How to Manage the Shoulder Months

Warm weather is right around the corner. This time of year, often referred to as ‘shoulder months’, is when it’s not warm enough to fully switch over to summer foam, and not cold enough to just use winter foam. Balancing inventory shouldn’t be too hard though, because IDI has the proper material in our warehouses for you at all times. So, if all you have is winter foam, it may be time to order a few drums of summer blends to have on hand. A good rule of thumb is that once the temperature has been at or above 55 degrees for 2-3 weeks, it is ok to start using summer foam. Here are some things to keep in mind during these transition months:

Ambient and Substrate Temperature:

As long as you are staying within the guidelines of the technical data sheet for ambient temperatures you shouldn’t experience any problems. Why are these ranges important? Winter foams react faster than summer foams. If you spray winter foam in temperatures outside of what is listed on the technical data sheet, you could experience some frustrations and down time trying to determine the root of the problem. Keep in mind, that while the ambient temperature might fall within the appropriate range, the substrate temperature could still be too cold for summer foam (if in the shade), or too hot for winter foam (if in the sun). Be sure to take readings of the substrate temperature as well. This is another good reason to keep technical data sheets for every product you spray on the rig. Each product will have a slightly different temperature range for application. If you have any questions on the temperature range of the product you purchased from IDI please don’t hesitate to call your local IDI rep or one of IDI’s spray foam technicians.

Machine Settings:

To quote one of IDI’s spray foam techs, “this is not a set it and forget it” type of application. You could start the day at 55 degrees and as the day goes on the temperature could get into the 70’s or 80’s. Making sure you are adjusting your machine settings to reflect the current ambient temperature is key. You may have to make several adjustments throughout the day to keep spraying good, quality foam, so keep that in mind as you plan out your day.

Drum Storage:

Storing your drums in a climate controlled environment is essential for spraying good foam throughout the year, no matter the temperature outside. These shoulder months are no exceptions. Temperatures can drop 20 to 30 degrees at night and maintaining a storage temperature between 70 and 80 degrees will make sure that you are starting the day off right once you arrive at the jobsite.

As long as you follow these guidelines, you’ll be handling the shoulder months with ease, but if you run into any issues, your local IDI rep or one of our spray foam techs are standing by to provide assistance, whether it is equipment or material related.


Have a question on anything insulation, pricing, or want to place an order? With hundreds of products and countless services, our experts will help walk you through the process of getting ready for your next project. Get in contact with our team today for help and guidance on the right products and best techniques for you and your business.