Commitment to Training: Building Strong and Dedicated Crews
Spray foam is a professionally installed product; it is not a “do-it-yourself” product. It requires special training and most often a certification by a licensed company, like InsulRight, to install it. Experience, education, and training are the key core elements a professional installer should have.
InsulRight has 18 full-time spray technicians who have experience working with major manufacturers of spray foam insulations, including DOW, BASF, Bayer, and Icynene. There are usually 3 to 4 members on each spray crew. At any given time, InsulRight has six crews working at various job sites.
According to InsulRight Production Manager, Ken Hagerich, all of the technicians begin working on a spray crew for about three months so they can learn the basic installation techniques. Some of the basics include safety, job site etiquette, site preparation, and demobilization.
After mastering these basic techniques, they learn about the envelope concept of foam insulation. Following their initial training, the trainee goes to a finished project site.
“We always want to start with the end in mind,” said Ken. “Once they see the finished installation, we’ll take them to an active job site where we walk them through the entire process.”
They’ll observe the crew working that day and ask any questions. Spraying techniques are demonstrated at this point and explained to the trainee. The following day, they’ll go with that same crew as an extra and start to help. After 90 days of working with the crew, his foreman will conduct a review.
“We’ll key in on his strong points and some of his weaknesses,” said Ken. “It’s a basic review process.”
In about six months, the vested installer will then begin a thorough education process involving the mechanics of the spray foam equipment. In about a year’s time, the InsulRight trained team member will be ready to take on any project as a crew chief and perform any project to provide an energy-efficient, comfortable InsulRight home.
The training does not end there, however. Ken added that further instruction on foam products and applications are part of the continuing education process at InsulRight.
The most critical component to all of this training is safety first.
“We highly stress the importance of safety,” said Ken. “While we make sure that the trainees understand the concept of spray foam insulation and how to apply it, we address the safe handling of the materials as well.”