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Thread: Great Stuff

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Kansas City (zip 66204)
    Posts
    50

    Does anyone know if it is safe to put Great Stuff around electrical boxes? I would like to take the front plastic plate off my outlets and switches and spray Great Stuff throught the cracks, so that the box is enclosed in Great Stuff.

    Thanks,
    Doug

  2. #2
    Senior Tech Guest
    You can buy insulators to put behind the duplex covers. If you try the great stuff make sure you get the minimum expanding or you'll be taking up wittling as a hobby.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Northern VA
    Posts
    512
    Code violation, and for a good reason. If you get foam IN the box, which is almost certain with expanding foam, it will be a fire hazard. The conductors need the empty space in the box to not overheat.

    Right off the top of my head, it's a violation of box fill 314.16 and "workmanlike manner" 110.12 - not to mention it could burn your house down.

    Just keep that expanding foam away from anything electrical. If you want to reduce infiltration from the outlet and switch boxes, you can get (UL listed!) foam gaskets that work fairly well. For outlets, put those child-safety outlet blocker caps in the unused outlets to block infiltration through the outlet holes.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Kansas City (zip 66204)
    Posts
    50

    WOW - Didn't Know


    If that is such a bad idea and aganist code, is the insulation that they pour into the outside walls also bad? I was look at a contractor to isulate the wall with an expanding foam (60x) that is poured into the walls (spellnig is bad ny Icyne.)

    Doug

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    88

    Re: WOW - Didn't Know

    If that is such a bad idea and aganist code, is the insulation that they pour into the outside walls also bad?
    Depends on age of house and wiring method. Romex is happy in an insulated wall. Knob-and-tube is not - those wires were rated for free circulating air in that space. Blowing insulation into a wall with knob-and-tube is a no-no.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Northern VA
    Posts
    512
    Unless your wiring is K&T, insulating over the wires is okay. What's NOT okay is getting insulation in the boxes. With expanding foam in a can, that's basically impossible to avoid. Icynene is supposedly different with a competent installer - I have no firsthand experience with it, so don't know for sure. So long as it doesn't get in the boxes it ought to be fine.

    With blown-in insulations, so long as the installer isn't sloppy you're fine. For either blown-in or Icynene, I would definitely check after install that there wasn't any insulation inside the electrical boxes, and make the insulation contractor do any needed repairs.

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