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In some areas, people prefer to use XPS foam panels all the way for insulation. They may think XPS is flexible in thickness or it looks beautiful. Is it considerate enough? Here we can learn about 3 types of insulation materials for panel choices.

Foam Panel Types for Insulation-PIR

Polyisocyanate Foam Panel

PIR, or ISO, is a thermoset plastic product typically produced as a foam and used as a rigid thermal insulation panel. Its R-value averages from 6 to 6.5 per inch. It endures more heat than coldness. As of about 15°C, its performance starts to deteriorate.

Suggested application:

It is not suggested to use if your winter is too cold (10°C or below). But it can be a great material as long as you keep it warm.

Foam Panel Types for Insulation-XPS

XPS Foam Panel

Rated at R5 per inch, extruded polystyrene foam is known for its moisture resistance. But recent findings show that in below-grade applications, XPS damages quickly and loses its performance of impermeability.

Suggested application:

Careful to use in below-grade applications (e.g. basement insulation). Various XPS foams perform irregularly.

Foam Panel Types for Insulation-EPS

EPS Foam Panel

A little different from XPS, EPS stands for expanded polystyrene. Its R-value is at R4 per inch, a little lower than XPS. But it is more permeable to air and moisture. EPS is additionally more stable in performance as it does not tail off so quickly with time like XPS. The performance of EPS may drop slightly when it’s wet (reports I’ve seen indicate somewhere in the area of 10-15 %, so nothing too catastrophic), it will also dry out just as quickly as it got wet and return to its original performance. But there is nothing wrong with putting a little effort into keeping it dry if you can.

Suggested application:

It seems that EPS is generally better than XPS among their common application fields. In addition, EPS is also vying for the most Eco-friendly insulation material.