Using Your Spray Foam Trailer For the 1st Time: What You Need to Know + How-to Steps

Use this guide and step-by-step video to learn how to safely use a new spray foam trailer for the first time. Then, learn crucial SPF trailer best practices that could mean the difference between a long-lasting rig (and ROI on your investment) and costly errors.

Don’t have a spray foam trailer yet, but considering investing in one?

An SPF rig can bring immense value to your business by upping your ability to take on more insulation contract work and larger projects!

Learn how to build your own spray foam rig to industry-leading standards and let our experts help you along the way! Get more information about our custom options to determine the best spray foam rig for your business.
Once you’ve got the right rig, make sure you know how to start it and use it properly to keep your investment in peak condition for the long haul.

Step by Step: How to Start Your Rig For the First Time

Follow along with the step-by-step video as our experts take you through starting a rig for the first time.

Then, before you start your spray foam trailer: make sure to read our expert-tested guidelines and trailer evaluation tips to ensure your rig is ready for product to run through it.

Evaluating & Preparing Your Rig Before Using It:

The most important piece of advice our experts can give our customers is to know your chemicals and what they do. Use this guide to teach your crew about the A and B-side chemicals they’ll be spraying and working with every day.

A-Side:

Often referred to as the ISO, MDI, or PMDI side.

Imagine a drum full of superglue — the A component is the same concept. It’s constantly seeking moisture and will react with any trace amounts it can find. So, your immediate and utmost concern should be keeping moisture away from it.

Greasing the A-Side:

In the video, you see our team installing the pump into the drum and wiping a thin film of grease onto the threads and on the collar. To prevent the chemical from supergluing itself to whatever it is touching, it’s imperative that you grease the collar before threading it onto the drum, each and every time.

Our experts can tell you from experience, it is NOT FUN getting your hose and drum unstuck from one another!

“I once put a cap back on the A-side drum and failed to grease it, learned my lesson when I eventually had to chisel a hole in the top of the drum to be able to use it again. Don’t be like me.” – Aaron Meissner, Spray Foam Technical Advisor, IDI Distributors

A-Side Desiccant Filter:

The desiccant filter dries the air going in (so that crystallization does not occur inside the drum) and vents the A-side drum while pumping material out. This keeps the A-side chemical clean and free of debris.

Ask your local IDI Rep about changing the desiccant filter cartridges and purchasing new ones to ensure your drum will stay consistently free of debris use after use.

B-Side:

Often referred to as poly or resin.

The B-side is usually a lightweight chemical that uses water as a blowing agent. This chemical performs best when it’s heated and mixed thoroughly before use.

B-Side Temperature:

The blowing agent in open cell B side is water. It can be (even likes to be) warm and well mixed, depending on the formulation.

The blowing agent in true closed-cell products is a chemical that boils at low temperatures, so maintaining a 70° to 80° temperature in the drum is ideal. It is also a chemical that gets agitated when it gets agitated, so it should not be mixed.

B-Side Contamination:

Another precaution is to not mix open-cell and closed-cell B-side resin. They don’t like each other, so keep the pumps clean during changeovers and avoid contaminating drums when purging or recirculating.

Filling the system properly with SPF chemicals for the first time:

Now that you know a little more about the materials inside each drum, there are a couple things to keep in mind while filling the system with SPF. Often times, the system comes pre-filled with a packing liquid of some sort. If this is present, make sure to initially purge the liquid into a waste container to avoid contaminating the drum with a foreign agent.

Packing liquid present also usually means the system was pressure tested prior to heading out the door to you, so all of the hose connections and fittings should be tight already. But, if the packing liquid is not present, that means there is solely air inside it and the unit was likely not pressure tested. Make sure to check that all fittings are tightened down to avoid nagging pressure issues that can cause chemical leaks and leave you with a messy hose to clean up.

No matter what, always come prepared with equipment for spills, leaks and accidents. To start, ensure your rig and team are equipped with gloves, suits, masks, rags and waste containers. Watch our video to learn more about the crucial spray foam rig equipment and supplies every trailer should carry!

Prepare Your Team:

The more prepared you and your crew are, the faster you’ll work and the more projects your team will be able to take on. If you think you and your crew may benefit from a hands-on rig training or evaluation, contact your local IDI Distributors to get a one-on-one training set up or sign up for an IDIREV Rig Evaluation event near you.

Interested in a Spray Foam Rig or Have Questions About Yours?

That’s why we’re here! At IDI we work for you, so please feel free to reach out to any one of our knowledgeable technical advisors. As always, IDI is your one-stop shop for materials, equipment, training, and guidance. Let us earn your business and make you profitable. Contact our team today!