Along with the many other types of insulation, a common form is foam. This can come in three types: flexible elastomeric, rigid and polyethylene. Let’s briefly go over these options and what they are normally used for, with best quality for each.
These are rubber based foams that have high resistance to water vapor and don’t generally need a water vapor barrier as some others may need. In addition to having the rubber surface, it allows this foam to prevent surface condensation with relatively small thickness to it. This type of foam is normally used on refrigeration and air conditioning piping. They may also be used on heating and hot water systems.
This type is common in some countries, but not in others. This has a minimal acoustic performance but can show low thermal conductivity values. This can be used to help energy savings be met while not having the insulation be extremely thick.
This is a flexible plastic based foam that is widely used to prevent freezing of water supply piping and to reduce heat loss from heating pipes. Typically coming in 1 inch thickness, it is surprisingly a good source as a sound barrier as well if this is insulation that is used within your home or businesses walls.