SPU heat insulation boards are made of polyurethane, which has been known as a high-quality heat insulation board for demanding applications for some 40 years. Refrigerators, freezers, cold storage facilities and refrigerated transport spaces as well as heavy-duty industrial pipe insulators are all applications in which polyurethane is almost the only heat insulation material in use today. Increasingly more is demanded of heat insulation for buildings also. Every product application and area of usage sets its own demands for the materials used. Therefore, SPU has developed separate specialty products and installation methods for industrial use, industrial and agricultural buildings, retail buildings and housing construction. SPU insulation boards are high-quality products produced in Finland, which have been manufactured for more than 30 years in SPU's factory in Kankaanpää.
In new building, SPU insulation boards help to achieve first-class insulation properties with normal structure thickness and costs. By using a heat insulation solution based on SPU insulation boards, highly energy-efficient solutions can be implemented at nearly the same cost as a normal building. Very easily and without additional, expensive and complicated structures, SPU insulation boards enable thermal insulation corresponding to the low-energy and passive building classifications.
SPU insulation boards are ideally suited to providing supplementary heat insulation for old buildings. Additional thermal insulation can be placed on the interior of the building without expensive exterior renovations. Especially in brick-lined and stone structure buildings, placement of additional insulation on the exterior is normally an expensive multiphase operation. SPU heat insulation products also include solutions for the thermal insulation of attic spaces. Thermally insulating an old, cold attic using SPU insulation boards is easy to implement, even as a DIY job. Since SPU insulation boards are very effective heat insulators, an insulation thickness much smaller than that of wool insulation is sufficient for the insulation of an attic. This allows much more headroom and useful capacity in the attic space. Installing SPU insulation boards is quick and easy. The insulation boards can be installed simply by following the instructions and does not require previous experience in construction.
SPU insulation boards do not become damaged by moisture or shrinkage, decay or mould, and their heat insulation qualities do not change over the years. SPU insulation boards are also fireproof - personal safety in an SPU-insulated house and a wool-insulated house is the same in a fire situation (further information). The effectiveness of SPU insulation boards has been tested in many independent studies conducted by, for instance, Tampere University of Technology (TUT) and the Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT).
Structural solutions for low-energy and passive houses
SPU insulation boards possess superior characteristics for low-energy and passive energy construction. The thermal insulation capacity of SPU insulation boards is better than that of any other insulation material. For instance, compared with a traditional wool-insulated solution, the same thermal insulation capacity can be achieved using SPU insulation boards at half the structure thickness, and no separate vapour or air barrier layers are necessary.
Low-energy and passive energy structures are not necessarily thicker than normal house structures, which means significant savings in both material and labour costs. If the walls are 200 mm thicker, this generates large additional costs for frame materials, the plinth, the exterior cladding and roof materials. The architecture of a passive house does not suffer from bunker-like appearances of walls and roof, either – slimmer structures leave more opportunities for architectural planning. After all, the appearance of the house is important in energy-efficient construction, too.
Because SPU insulation boards are rigid and their seams are sealed with sealing foam, airtightness is an intrinsic quality of the SPU structure. Using sealing foam, lead-ins can also easily be sealed to be airtight. The airtightness required by low-energy and passive houses (N50 value below 0.6) is extremely difficult to achieve in practice using soft insulation materials and plastic membranes, because air leakages are formed in the connecting seams between the plastic membranes, around lead-ins and in nail and screw holes. By using SPU insulation boards, the airtightness is retained over the years because the structure does not have, for instance, any taped plastic seams.
Using SPU insulation boards, low-energy and passive structures will reliably exclude moisture. Article on the effectiveness of moisture exclusion in SPU low-energy and passive structures (PDF)
SPU insulation boards are high-quality products produced in Finland, and have been safely used as insulation solutions for the most demanding applications, such as freezer warehouses and ice stadiums for over 30 years.