Tips from the Experts

Sometimes, there are things you just learn over time. Our team of experts have shared some of the trade secrets they have learned through successes and failures.

Jim Davidson

Jim Davidson is the Managing Partner at SprayWorks Equipment Group. He has 50 years of experience in the spray foam industry and has worked alongside many of the industry pioneers. Jim has designed and created industry equipment such as; Spraybot, Barrel Blazer, Roboliner and Polybot - among others.

John Davidson

John Davidson is the VP of Operations at SprayWorks Equipment Group and is an SPFA PCP Certified Roofing and Insulation Installer, Roofing and Insulation Project Manager, and Supplier Rep. With over 30 years of experience in the spray foam and polyurea industry, John brings a wealth of knowledge and hands-on experience. He has worked on commercial and residential buildings, bridges and infrastructure.

Dave Penta

Dave Penta is the VP of Sales at SprayWorks Equipment Group. For the past 30+ years, Dave has worked with multiple industries including; commercial and residential buildings, along with spray foam and coatings systems.

SPRAY GUNS

Cleaning A/B Filters

Sometimes chemical cleaning the A and B filters can leave too much residue and plug up the screen hole. My suggestion? Re-new your filter screens.

You can do it with a few tricks. Try using a light amount of heat from a torch and burn out any restrictions. Once the restrictions are burned off, use air to blow out excess from the screens. Finally, hold your screen up to a light to ensure it is clear and ready to use again.

Choosing a Screen

Machine screens and spray gun screens come in three different sizes; 80, 60, and 40 mesh. Using a larger mesh filter allows smaller particles to pass through your processing system and out the spray tip of the gun. For most polyurethane foam and polyurea, I suggest using 60 or 40 mesh screen to reduce filter clogging.

Filtering Chemical

Long ago (maybe 45 years) my old company evolved mostly into a spray foam roofing contractor from just an insulator. Because of the iso particles and small size screens, and yes, not doing a good job of sealing the iso drums. This was always a recipe for a pile of disaster. I kept shooting myself in the foot and no one would help to unload the gun. 

Continue reading

Ventilation at the Job Site

It may seem redundant but, when spray foaming, keep your job site ventilated and do it every single time you spray. Keeping the work area ventilated will prevent unnecessary exposure to fumes and particles that can cause damage to workers. Best practice is to be aware of the airflow and have a source of entry and a way for air to flow out of the work space. Also remember to keep the area ventilated until the re-entry time specified by the foam manufacturer.  

For more information on proper ventilation procedures review the EPA Spray Foam Ventilation Guidelines 

Properly Trained Team

Taking time to properly train your team will prevent losses in both time and money. By investing in your employees, you are able to have them run more efficiently and spend less time fixing costly mistakes.

Training doesn’t always have to take a ton of time out of your schedule. Taking one day to train a group of employees on proper equipment handling, maintenance or basic trouble shooting can prevent hours of lost time. Afterall, spending a few hours to train your crew on taking care of equipment can prevent having hours or even days of downtime due to a preventable mistake.

Keep Your Material Warm

Having warm material is very important for spray foaming, however, it is easy to think a few degrees won’t make a difference. It is important for the health of your equipment and the quality of your work to wait for those few extra degrees to get you the best quality 

Remember to always warm up material to the manufacturers recommended temperature to get the best spray! 

Remove moisture from your drums

The “A” component, while in the drum, will react with atoms in the air resulting in the formation of crystal like skin structures. The “A” material should be sealed properly to limit the potential of these formations that if allowed to form will contaminate the liquid. Contamination may make the liquid impossible to process, requiring disposal and wasting of the product. Once the drum is opened, the air needed to replace the displacement of the “A” material being removed should be dry. This is achieved be either low pressure nitrogen being let in the drum as the material is displaced or filtered through a desiccant dryer.

Changing Hydraulic Oil in your Spray Foam Machine

What you need to know before changing hydraulic oil is when operating in ambient temperature recommendations of 0 to 90°F (-17 to 32°C) frequency is about 1000 hours or 12 months, whichever comes first and/or in  90°F and above (32°C and above) 500 hours or 6 months, whichever comes first.

Recommended Oils: 

Citgo A/W ISO Grade 46 Amsoil AWI ISO Grade 46 (synthetic*) BP Oil International Energol® HLP-HM, ISO Grade 46 Carl Bechem GmbH Staroil HVI 46 Castrol Hyspin AWS 46 Chevron Rykon® AW, ISO 46 Exxon Humble Hydraulic H, ISO Grade 46 Mobil Mobil DTE 25, ISO Grade 46 Shell Shell Tellus, ISO Grade 46 Texaco Texaco AW Hydraulic, ISO Grade 46 *

NOTE: After changing hydraulic oil and upon starting motor, hydraulic pumps may make a screeching noise until primed. If this noise continues for more than 30 seconds, switch off motor control and contact your machine manufacturer.

HOSES

Cleaning A/B Filters

Sometimes chemical cleaning the A and B filters can leave too much residue and plug up the screen hole. My suggestion? Re-new your filter screens.

You can do it with a few tricks. Try using a light amount of heat from a torch and burn out any restrictions. Once the restrictions are burned off, use air to blow out excess from the screens. Finally, hold your screen up to a light to ensure it is clear and ready to use again.

Choosing a Screen

Machine screens and spray gun screens come in three different sizes; 80, 60, and 40 mesh. Using a larger mesh filter allows smaller particles to pass through your processing system and out the spray tip of the gun. For most polyurethane foam and polyurea, I suggest using 60 or 40 mesh screen to reduce filter clogging.

Filtering Chemical

Long ago (maybe 45 years) my old company evolved mostly into a spray foam roofing contractor from just an insulator. Because of the iso particles and small size screens, and yes, not doing a good job of sealing the iso drums. This was always a recipe for a pile of disaster. I kept shooting myself in the foot and no one would help to unload the gun. 

Continue reading

Ventilation at the Job Site

It may seem redundant but, when spray foaming, keep your job site ventilated and do it every single time you spray. Keeping the work area ventilated will prevent unnecessary exposure to fumes and particles that can cause damage to workers. Best practice is to be aware of the airflow and have a source of entry and a way for air to flow out of the work space. Also remember to keep the area ventilated until the re-entry time specified by the foam manufacturer.  

For more information on proper ventilation procedures review the EPA Spray Foam Ventilation Guidelines 

Properly Trained Team

Taking time to properly train your team will prevent losses in both time and money. By investing in your employees, you are able to have them run more efficiently and spend less time fixing costly mistakes.

Training doesn’t always have to take a ton of time out of your schedule. Taking one day to train a group of employees on proper equipment handling, maintenance or basic trouble shooting can prevent hours of lost time. Afterall, spending a few hours to train your crew on taking care of equipment can prevent having hours or even days of downtime due to a preventable mistake.

Keep Your Material Warm

Having warm material is very important for spray foaming, however, it is easy to think a few degrees won’t make a difference. It is important for the health of your equipment and the quality of your work to wait for those few extra degrees to get you the best quality 

Remember to always warm up material to the manufacturers recommended temperature to get the best spray! 

Remove moisture from your drums

The “A” component, while in the drum, will react with atoms in the air resulting in the formation of crystal like skin structures. The “A” material should be sealed properly to limit the potential of these formations that if allowed to form will contaminate the liquid. Contamination may make the liquid impossible to process, requiring disposal and wasting of the product. Once the drum is opened, the air needed to replace the displacement of the “A” material being removed should be dry. This is achieved be either low pressure nitrogen being let in the drum as the material is displaced or filtered through a desiccant dryer.

Changing Hydraulic Oil in your Spray Foam Machine

What you need to know before changing hydraulic oil is when operating in ambient temperature recommendations of 0 to 90°F (-17 to 32°C) frequency is about 1000 hours or 12 months, whichever comes first and/or in  90°F and above (32°C and above) 500 hours or 6 months, whichever comes first.

Recommended Oils: 

Citgo A/W ISO Grade 46 Amsoil AWI ISO Grade 46 (synthetic*) BP Oil International Energol® HLP-HM, ISO Grade 46 Carl Bechem GmbH Staroil HVI 46 Castrol Hyspin AWS 46 Chevron Rykon® AW, ISO 46 Exxon Humble Hydraulic H, ISO Grade 46 Mobil Mobil DTE 25, ISO Grade 46 Shell Shell Tellus, ISO Grade 46 Texaco Texaco AW Hydraulic, ISO Grade 46 *

NOTE: After changing hydraulic oil and upon starting motor, hydraulic pumps may make a screeching noise until primed. If this noise continues for more than 30 seconds, switch off motor control and contact your machine manufacturer.

TRANSFER PUMPS

Cleaning A/B Filters

Sometimes chemical cleaning the A and B filters can leave too much residue and plug up the screen hole. My suggestion? Re-new your filter screens.

You can do it with a few tricks. Try using a light amount of heat from a torch and burn out any restrictions. Once the restrictions are burned off, use air to blow out excess from the screens. Finally, hold your screen up to a light to ensure it is clear and ready to use again.

Choosing a Screen

Machine screens and spray gun screens come in three different sizes; 80, 60, and 40 mesh. Using a larger mesh filter allows smaller particles to pass through your processing system and out the spray tip of the gun. For most polyurethane foam and polyurea, I suggest using 60 or 40 mesh screen to reduce filter clogging.

Filtering Chemical

Long ago (maybe 45 years) my old company evolved mostly into a spray foam roofing contractor from just an insulator. Because of the iso particles and small size screens, and yes, not doing a good job of sealing the iso drums. This was always a recipe for a pile of disaster. I kept shooting myself in the foot and no one would help to unload the gun. 

Continue reading

Ventilation at the Job Site

It may seem redundant but, when spray foaming, keep your job site ventilated and do it every single time you spray. Keeping the work area ventilated will prevent unnecessary exposure to fumes and particles that can cause damage to workers. Best practice is to be aware of the airflow and have a source of entry and a way for air to flow out of the work space. Also remember to keep the area ventilated until the re-entry time specified by the foam manufacturer.  

For more information on proper ventilation procedures review the EPA Spray Foam Ventilation Guidelines 

Properly Trained Team

Taking time to properly train your team will prevent losses in both time and money. By investing in your employees, you are able to have them run more efficiently and spend less time fixing costly mistakes.

Training doesn’t always have to take a ton of time out of your schedule. Taking one day to train a group of employees on proper equipment handling, maintenance or basic trouble shooting can prevent hours of lost time. Afterall, spending a few hours to train your crew on taking care of equipment can prevent having hours or even days of downtime due to a preventable mistake.

Keep Your Material Warm

Having warm material is very important for spray foaming, however, it is easy to think a few degrees won’t make a difference. It is important for the health of your equipment and the quality of your work to wait for those few extra degrees to get you the best quality 

Remember to always warm up material to the manufacturers recommended temperature to get the best spray! 

Remove moisture from your drums

The “A” component, while in the drum, will react with atoms in the air resulting in the formation of crystal like skin structures. The “A” material should be sealed properly to limit the potential of these formations that if allowed to form will contaminate the liquid. Contamination may make the liquid impossible to process, requiring disposal and wasting of the product. Once the drum is opened, the air needed to replace the displacement of the “A” material being removed should be dry. This is achieved be either low pressure nitrogen being let in the drum as the material is displaced or filtered through a desiccant dryer.

Changing Hydraulic Oil in your Spray Foam Machine

What you need to know before changing hydraulic oil is when operating in ambient temperature recommendations of 0 to 90°F (-17 to 32°C) frequency is about 1000 hours or 12 months, whichever comes first and/or in  90°F and above (32°C and above) 500 hours or 6 months, whichever comes first.

Recommended Oils: 

Citgo A/W ISO Grade 46 Amsoil AWI ISO Grade 46 (synthetic*) BP Oil International Energol® HLP-HM, ISO Grade 46 Carl Bechem GmbH Staroil HVI 46 Castrol Hyspin AWS 46 Chevron Rykon® AW, ISO 46 Exxon Humble Hydraulic H, ISO Grade 46 Mobil Mobil DTE 25, ISO Grade 46 Shell Shell Tellus, ISO Grade 46 Texaco Texaco AW Hydraulic, ISO Grade 46 *

NOTE: After changing hydraulic oil and upon starting motor, hydraulic pumps may make a screeching noise until primed. If this noise continues for more than 30 seconds, switch off motor control and contact your machine manufacturer.

SCREENS & FILTERS

Cleaning A/B Filters

Sometimes chemical cleaning the A and B filters can leave too much residue and plug up the screen hole. My suggestion? Re-new your filter screens.

You can do it with a few tricks. Try using a light amount of heat from a torch and burn out any restrictions. Once the restrictions are burned off, use air to blow out excess from the screens. Finally, hold your screen up to a light to ensure it is clear and ready to use again.

Choosing a Screen

Machine screens and spray gun screens come in three different sizes; 80, 60, and 40 mesh. Using a larger mesh filter allows smaller particles to pass through your processing system and out the spray tip of the gun. For most polyurethane foam and polyurea, I suggest using 60 or 40 mesh screen to reduce filter clogging.

Filtering Chemical

Long ago (maybe 45 years) my old company evolved mostly into a spray foam roofing contractor from just an insulator. Because of the iso particles and small size screens, and yes, not doing a good job of sealing the iso drums. This was always a recipe for a pile of disaster. I kept shooting myself in the foot and no one would help to unload the gun. 

Continue reading

Ventilation at the Job Site

It may seem redundant but, when spray foaming, keep your job site ventilated and do it every single time you spray. Keeping the work area ventilated will prevent unnecessary exposure to fumes and particles that can cause damage to workers. Best practice is to be aware of the airflow and have a source of entry and a way for air to flow out of the work space. Also remember to keep the area ventilated until the re-entry time specified by the foam manufacturer.  

For more information on proper ventilation procedures review the EPA Spray Foam Ventilation Guidelines 

Properly Trained Team

Taking time to properly train your team will prevent losses in both time and money. By investing in your employees, you are able to have them run more efficiently and spend less time fixing costly mistakes.

Training doesn’t always have to take a ton of time out of your schedule. Taking one day to train a group of employees on proper equipment handling, maintenance or basic trouble shooting can prevent hours of lost time. Afterall, spending a few hours to train your crew on taking care of equipment can prevent having hours or even days of downtime due to a preventable mistake.

Keep Your Material Warm

Having warm material is very important for spray foaming, however, it is easy to think a few degrees won’t make a difference. It is important for the health of your equipment and the quality of your work to wait for those few extra degrees to get you the best quality 

Remember to always warm up material to the manufacturers recommended temperature to get the best spray! 

Remove moisture from your drums

The “A” component, while in the drum, will react with atoms in the air resulting in the formation of crystal like skin structures. The “A” material should be sealed properly to limit the potential of these formations that if allowed to form will contaminate the liquid. Contamination may make the liquid impossible to process, requiring disposal and wasting of the product. Once the drum is opened, the air needed to replace the displacement of the “A” material being removed should be dry. This is achieved be either low pressure nitrogen being let in the drum as the material is displaced or filtered through a desiccant dryer.

Changing Hydraulic Oil in your Spray Foam Machine

What you need to know before changing hydraulic oil is when operating in ambient temperature recommendations of 0 to 90°F (-17 to 32°C) frequency is about 1000 hours or 12 months, whichever comes first and/or in  90°F and above (32°C and above) 500 hours or 6 months, whichever comes first.

Recommended Oils: 

Citgo A/W ISO Grade 46 Amsoil AWI ISO Grade 46 (synthetic*) BP Oil International Energol® HLP-HM, ISO Grade 46 Carl Bechem GmbH Staroil HVI 46 Castrol Hyspin AWS 46 Chevron Rykon® AW, ISO 46 Exxon Humble Hydraulic H, ISO Grade 46 Mobil Mobil DTE 25, ISO Grade 46 Shell Shell Tellus, ISO Grade 46 Texaco Texaco AW Hydraulic, ISO Grade 46 *

NOTE: After changing hydraulic oil and upon starting motor, hydraulic pumps may make a screeching noise until primed. If this noise continues for more than 30 seconds, switch off motor control and contact your machine manufacturer.

WEATHER

Cleaning A/B Filters

Sometimes chemical cleaning the A and B filters can leave too much residue and plug up the screen hole. My suggestion? Re-new your filter screens.

You can do it with a few tricks. Try using a light amount of heat from a torch and burn out any restrictions. Once the restrictions are burned off, use air to blow out excess from the screens. Finally, hold your screen up to a light to ensure it is clear and ready to use again.

Choosing a Screen

Machine screens and spray gun screens come in three different sizes; 80, 60, and 40 mesh. Using a larger mesh filter allows smaller particles to pass through your processing system and out the spray tip of the gun. For most polyurethane foam and polyurea, I suggest using 60 or 40 mesh screen to reduce filter clogging.

Filtering Chemical

Long ago (maybe 45 years) my old company evolved mostly into a spray foam roofing contractor from just an insulator. Because of the iso particles and small size screens, and yes, not doing a good job of sealing the iso drums. This was always a recipe for a pile of disaster. I kept shooting myself in the foot and no one would help to unload the gun. 

Continue reading

Ventilation at the Job Site

It may seem redundant but, when spray foaming, keep your job site ventilated and do it every single time you spray. Keeping the work area ventilated will prevent unnecessary exposure to fumes and particles that can cause damage to workers. Best practice is to be aware of the airflow and have a source of entry and a way for air to flow out of the work space. Also remember to keep the area ventilated until the re-entry time specified by the foam manufacturer.  

For more information on proper ventilation procedures review the EPA Spray Foam Ventilation Guidelines 

Properly Trained Team

Taking time to properly train your team will prevent losses in both time and money. By investing in your employees, you are able to have them run more efficiently and spend less time fixing costly mistakes.

Training doesn’t always have to take a ton of time out of your schedule. Taking one day to train a group of employees on proper equipment handling, maintenance or basic trouble shooting can prevent hours of lost time. Afterall, spending a few hours to train your crew on taking care of equipment can prevent having hours or even days of downtime due to a preventable mistake.

Keep Your Material Warm

Having warm material is very important for spray foaming, however, it is easy to think a few degrees won’t make a difference. It is important for the health of your equipment and the quality of your work to wait for those few extra degrees to get you the best quality 

Remember to always warm up material to the manufacturers recommended temperature to get the best spray! 

Remove moisture from your drums

The “A” component, while in the drum, will react with atoms in the air resulting in the formation of crystal like skin structures. The “A” material should be sealed properly to limit the potential of these formations that if allowed to form will contaminate the liquid. Contamination may make the liquid impossible to process, requiring disposal and wasting of the product. Once the drum is opened, the air needed to replace the displacement of the “A” material being removed should be dry. This is achieved be either low pressure nitrogen being let in the drum as the material is displaced or filtered through a desiccant dryer.

Changing Hydraulic Oil in your Spray Foam Machine

What you need to know before changing hydraulic oil is when operating in ambient temperature recommendations of 0 to 90°F (-17 to 32°C) frequency is about 1000 hours or 12 months, whichever comes first and/or in  90°F and above (32°C and above) 500 hours or 6 months, whichever comes first.

Recommended Oils: 

Citgo A/W ISO Grade 46 Amsoil AWI ISO Grade 46 (synthetic*) BP Oil International Energol® HLP-HM, ISO Grade 46 Carl Bechem GmbH Staroil HVI 46 Castrol Hyspin AWS 46 Chevron Rykon® AW, ISO 46 Exxon Humble Hydraulic H, ISO Grade 46 Mobil Mobil DTE 25, ISO Grade 46 Shell Shell Tellus, ISO Grade 46 Texaco Texaco AW Hydraulic, ISO Grade 46 *

NOTE: After changing hydraulic oil and upon starting motor, hydraulic pumps may make a screeching noise until primed. If this noise continues for more than 30 seconds, switch off motor control and contact your machine manufacturer.

PROCESS & DOCUMENTATION

Cleaning A/B Filters

Sometimes chemical cleaning the A and B filters can leave too much residue and plug up the screen hole. My suggestion? Re-new your filter screens.

You can do it with a few tricks. Try using a light amount of heat from a torch and burn out any restrictions. Once the restrictions are burned off, use air to blow out excess from the screens. Finally, hold your screen up to a light to ensure it is clear and ready to use again.

Choosing a Screen

Machine screens and spray gun screens come in three different sizes; 80, 60, and 40 mesh. Using a larger mesh filter allows smaller particles to pass through your processing system and out the spray tip of the gun. For most polyurethane foam and polyurea, I suggest using 60 or 40 mesh screen to reduce filter clogging.

Filtering Chemical

Long ago (maybe 45 years) my old company evolved mostly into a spray foam roofing contractor from just an insulator. Because of the iso particles and small size screens, and yes, not doing a good job of sealing the iso drums. This was always a recipe for a pile of disaster. I kept shooting myself in the foot and no one would help to unload the gun. 

Continue reading

Ventilation at the Job Site

It may seem redundant but, when spray foaming, keep your job site ventilated and do it every single time you spray. Keeping the work area ventilated will prevent unnecessary exposure to fumes and particles that can cause damage to workers. Best practice is to be aware of the airflow and have a source of entry and a way for air to flow out of the work space. Also remember to keep the area ventilated until the re-entry time specified by the foam manufacturer.  

For more information on proper ventilation procedures review the EPA Spray Foam Ventilation Guidelines 

Properly Trained Team

Taking time to properly train your team will prevent losses in both time and money. By investing in your employees, you are able to have them run more efficiently and spend less time fixing costly mistakes.

Training doesn’t always have to take a ton of time out of your schedule. Taking one day to train a group of employees on proper equipment handling, maintenance or basic trouble shooting can prevent hours of lost time. Afterall, spending a few hours to train your crew on taking care of equipment can prevent having hours or even days of downtime due to a preventable mistake.

Keep Your Material Warm

Having warm material is very important for spray foaming, however, it is easy to think a few degrees won’t make a difference. It is important for the health of your equipment and the quality of your work to wait for those few extra degrees to get you the best quality 

Remember to always warm up material to the manufacturers recommended temperature to get the best spray! 

Remove moisture from your drums

The “A” component, while in the drum, will react with atoms in the air resulting in the formation of crystal like skin structures. The “A” material should be sealed properly to limit the potential of these formations that if allowed to form will contaminate the liquid. Contamination may make the liquid impossible to process, requiring disposal and wasting of the product. Once the drum is opened, the air needed to replace the displacement of the “A” material being removed should be dry. This is achieved be either low pressure nitrogen being let in the drum as the material is displaced or filtered through a desiccant dryer.

Changing Hydraulic Oil in your Spray Foam Machine

What you need to know before changing hydraulic oil is when operating in ambient temperature recommendations of 0 to 90°F (-17 to 32°C) frequency is about 1000 hours or 12 months, whichever comes first and/or in  90°F and above (32°C and above) 500 hours or 6 months, whichever comes first.

Recommended Oils: 

Citgo A/W ISO Grade 46 Amsoil AWI ISO Grade 46 (synthetic*) BP Oil International Energol® HLP-HM, ISO Grade 46 Carl Bechem GmbH Staroil HVI 46 Castrol Hyspin AWS 46 Chevron Rykon® AW, ISO 46 Exxon Humble Hydraulic H, ISO Grade 46 Mobil Mobil DTE 25, ISO Grade 46 Shell Shell Tellus, ISO Grade 46 Texaco Texaco AW Hydraulic, ISO Grade 46 *

NOTE: After changing hydraulic oil and upon starting motor, hydraulic pumps may make a screeching noise until primed. If this noise continues for more than 30 seconds, switch off motor control and contact your machine manufacturer.