I'm comparing walk-in quotes. I need an oddball height for the box, so my usual Bally is out. So, I got a quote form Dade Manuf, US Cooler and Southeast Cooler.
Southeast uses urethane, which I've always thought was the best.
I was surprised to find US Cooler uses Extruded Polystyrene .....box is less money...and their website says it's better than urethane...hmmm
I know Bally uses urethane...but they're out.
I believe Dade uses urethane also.
Urethane...or Extruded Polystyrene ?
We're talking a very small box here - W/I freezer
If it's a freezer has to be urethane with a floor. That is all I will use anyway.
If you really know how it works, you have an execellent chance of fixin' er up!
Tomorrow is promised to no one...
h-doc, Give these folks a call http://www.harfordduracool.com/Home/Home.asp
They do the weird stuff the small stuff.
A division of Manitowoc Equipment Works.
Specify 5" walls the floor can be 4" though.
CES is slowly going to creep across the country.
I have no experience with US Coolers, but I have a few Dade boxes that are experiencing some severe panel failure with skin separation.
Go with Southest Coolers. They make a good box...and Bruce, the owner is a good friend of our own kfridge.
Poured-foam urethane insulation provides a panel insulation rating (or "R" value) of 29 - more than double the insulating value of fiberglass, polystyrene or cellular glass block.
And as The MoJo stated Harford Duracool's Walk-in is a Quality Box. It's parent company is Manitowoc, This is the box I use
If your not part of the solution, You must be part of the problem
US Coolers claim is that extruded polystyrene will not break down with use in the field as much as polyurethane. I have not sold their product but I do have four quoted and I will use them if the jobs are sold. They have been competitive in their pricing and their comments on R-value does grab my interest.
Here is a statement from their website.
"When buying a walk-in cooler or freezer ask what the aged R-value of the insulation will be 5 years after manufacturer and how resistant to moisture the insulation is. You will be surprised how these numbers vary from their published R-values.
R-values of different types of insulations are as follows:
Polyurethane: 1st yr R32....................5 yrs R6
Expanded Polystyrene: 1st yr R19........5 yrs R10
Extruded Polystyrene: 1st yr R32.........5 yrs R15 "
Here's the link to their website, check out the FAQ section.
EP or PU
Any company can claim their insulation has the highest R-value and technically be telling the truth. Extruded polystyrene does appear to be better the colder you're keeping the freezer.
But it does make sense that EP would hold up better than polyurethane. Poly-u looks like swiss cheese (pockets for water retention?), and comes out soaked upon turning it off and replacing it.
This is a subject I know a little about...
Urethane has the name, reputation and big money behind it. Stated R-values are only given for virgin product. Testing is only done under ideal conditions. Urethane production is something of an art form, which is not good from the standpoint of a consistant finished part. The mix of chemicals can also be adjusted by the OEM, with an end-user being none the wiser. A rigid-railed part can hide a multitude of sins.
Extruded foam block comes from either Owens Corning or Dow. The product is very stable and consistent. Fresh product R-value is just a hair away from fresh Urethane. I know cause I've done the testing.
Extruded or expanded polystyrene is hydrophoic by nature. It repels water. You want your life preserver to be made with it. Not so Urethane.
In a freezer wall, a dew point will occur at some point within the insulation. No problem with polystyrene, it doesn't absorb water. Big problem with Urethane, I don't care who's Urethane. The trucking industry knows this, when their urethane trailers gain thousands of pounds of weight over years of use.
You won't see Bally, southeast, Harford, any of the Urethane guys advertising what a 2 year old panel R-value is after use. The Poly's will be the same though. Expanded will rival, extruded will exceed.
Don't be afraid of the extruded product, it makes a fine panel. More companies then just US Cooler use it also (wink).
awesome post. That was extremely useful to me.
Just wanted to hold on to this thread for future reference.
SE Cooler uses polystyrene too since the new regulations came out.
Wow is this one old enough.....
The finest insulation in a structure is not urethane open cell or polystyrene.
The best insulation is used in the medical field.
The process is called VIP or Vacuum Injected Process.
The cabinets used are injected with very dense urethane in a vacuum condition which draws out 95% of the remaining open cell structure.
No moisture can form in the extremely dense foam.
A 2 1/2 " wall has about a R-42 factor.
And yes its damn expensive.
Everything I have researched shows a point of diminishing return in insulating properties with an increase of density. The insulating properties relied on the cell structure itself and what filled them, rather than the density, and there was an optimum point of return on investment.
Originally Posted by the mojo
Knowing the Mojo personally I have to respect his input. It is something I need to look at.
We have a long term vision of finding a product or process which leapfrogs current technology. Nothing I have seen shows in a cost investment vs long term return analysis that anything currently surpasses extruded polystyrene manufactured by Dow. Unfortunately I have yet to meet the customer where cost is not a factor in a buying decision.