Attaching the Rigid Foam Insulation Between Studs

Is it possible to install rigid foam board insulation between studs, such as extruded polystyrene? Absolutely! This task is straightforward and manageable, even for those new to DIY projects, particularly when working on an interior wall. The key is to ensure the insulation panels fit snugly between the studs for optimal performance.

Unlike fiberglass insulation, rigid foam insulation can be a more user-friendly option for beginners. Wondering how to do that? You can find the answer in this article below.

Can You Put Rigid Foam Insulation Between Studs?

As mentioned earlier, you can install rigid foam insulation between studs, including in interior walls. The procedure, which involves using materials like extruded polystyrene that fit snugly between the studs, will be detailed later in this article.

Is it the right choice to use rigid foam insulation in your house? Well, it can be considered one of the easiest insulation options to be attached to your house. Plus, it is very easy to attach it.

rigid foam insulation between studs

Like other insulation materials, including fiberglass insulation, rigid foam insulation, such as extruded polystyrene, has advantages and disadvantages. These include its ability to fit snugly in interior wall cavities and other specific considerations:

  1. Pros

According to sources, there are many benefits of this insulation material. The benefits will include:

  • It has a high R-value. This is a good sign of insulation material. When insulation material is high in R-value, the material is efficient in insulating your house.
  • It prevents heat transfer well. Given the high R-value, you can expect this material to prevent the heat from escaping your house during winter.
  • It has good protection against moisture. Hence, you don’t need to worry that it will be molded.
  • It has efficient air leak protection. Given the excellent R-value, you can have this material to protect your house from escaping its heat during winter.
  1. Cons

Before purchasing your rigid foam insulation, you need to know its drawbacks. This will include:

  • This material is more expensive compared to several other materials.
  • To install it, you need to do it properly. Otherwise, the insulation effect won’t be as effective as you may wish. 
  • Then, it is also not that strong structurally, especially compared to OSB sheathing or plywood.

How to Install Rigid Foam Insulation Between Studs

Then, how do you go about installing foam board insulation, like extruded polystyrene, between studs? The process, which ensures the panels fit snugly in the interior wall cavities, is detailed below, including steps to cut the foam to size and secure it effectively.

  1. First, measure the rigid foam sheet itself. Using a measuring tool, determine your walls’ overall width and height. Remember, standard stud spacing is typically 16 inches on center, which is crucial for cutting the foam accurately. You don’t need to dismiss the size of the studs. For example, if the width of your wall is 3 meters and the length is 5 meters, then the minimum amount of rigid foam insulation you need will be 15 square meters.
  2. Then, you will need to measure the size of each bay (the size between one stud and another). Then, record it in a note. Use a number to differentiate one bay size and another.
  3. Now, measure the size of your rigid foam insulation according to each bay’s size. Continue to cut it according to the size you have measured.
  4. The next procedure is to attach it to the wall. To do so, first, make sure that the foam will fit the bay just right. Prepare a sealant to seal them and put it on the back side of each panel.
  5. Continue by attaching it to your walls. Press it a bit so that your rigid foam can be placed tightly.
  6. If extra foam you can find surpasses the stud’s size, you can trim it off with a utility knife.

To ensure a complete insulation system, especially in interior walls, consider using vapor barriers and rigid foam board insulation, such as extruded polystyrene. This approach helps prevent moisture accumulation, a key factor in maintaining the integrity of your insulation and ensuring it fits snugly between the studs.

Creating a thermal break is essential when placing the foam board between studs. This is achieved by ensuring the foam board fully covers the studs, thereby reducing the thermal bridge effect, which can lead to heat loss.

After fitting the rigid foam between studs, use expanding spray foam or foam sealant to fill gaps. This ensures an airtight seal, enhancing the overall effectiveness of your insulation.

Lastly, while rigid foam board insulation is an excellent choice for insulating walls, handling and cutting the foam with care is important. Always use appropriate tools and follow safety guidelines to achieve the best results.”

Be confident and start your DIY project if you think it’s easy enough to do. Otherwise, you may consider asking for help from a professional, although that’s not highly recommended as it’ll be pricey.

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Insulator is a skilled author and Insulation expert with years of experience in the field. He has authored several articles and books on various aspects of insulation installation, maintenance, and repair.