Frequently Asked Questions
A: Most code jurisdictions will require a certain level of “R Value” to meet what is known as the Prescriptive Path of the Code. This, until now, has prevented the PCM industry from presenting our products as “Insulation.” As a result, what we have seen to date has been a push to pair PCMs with traditional R Value materials to enhance the “Performance” of the insulation in place. This certainly can be demonstrated and proven to be helpful. PCMs do not resist heat flow. Therefore, they are not “Insulation” in the literal sense of the word. Thus, in the case of what we call “low-hanging fruit” existing attic space, we, in most cases, suggest simply laying the blanket down on top of the existing insulation. In this configuration, depending on actual attic space conditions, the “PCM enhanced insulation” can perform as if the existing “R-Value” is 2, 3, or even 4 times the manufacturer’s stated values. Imagine an attic space with R 20 on the floor between the conditioned space below set at 75f and attic air at 135f. That scenario has a delta (Difference) across the insulation of 60 degrees, which the R 20 is resisting. Now place a blanket of PCM on top of the r-20. The PCM absorbs the heat but stays at 80f… You have now reduced the delta (The heat that your insulation tries to resist) from 60f down to 5f. The performance effect would be the same as more than doubling the existing R-Value… and it’s done with a blanket ¼ inch thick… The beauty is that the more extreme the conditions, the greater the effect the PCM has on the insulation package. Syndego PCMs, with their PATENTED IR REFLECTOR, changes the game. We can demonstrate an “R-Value.” Therefore, in new construction, the question will be similar to the one posed by the foam industry in its infancy. Spray foams have an R-value, but because of other attributes, arguments saying It was unnecessary to meet the “Prescriptive Path” “R Values” of the code were made. Some jurisdictions require “Rs” in the high 30s, 40s, and up! Ridiculous! With foam, those kinds of numbers are unnecessary and, in fact, potentially dangerously counterproductive. This is the same path that Syndego PCM Products will take in getting code approval. While we can demonstrate R 8 or higher under certain conditions because of the reflector, we can also demonstrate that the R8 combined with the PCM can provide performance that cannot be achieved by any standard insulation alone.
A: Yes, we can and do manufacture zone-specific PCMs. Several criteria are used to determine which PCM to recommend to a client. Some of those are ambient weather conditions, sunlit hours, weather patterns, elevation, diurnal temperature swings, and expected overnight low temperatures. The primary focus is overnight lows. For example, a 72f PCM would be largely useless in Phoenix, AZ, because it never drops below 72f for months. The PCM would never passively refreeze! We use the NOAA website for our weather and temperature information. The site provides all necessary data for virtually every area code in the country.
A: We offer a 20-Year Written Warranty and have every expectation that as long as the moisture content within the film packets stays constant, it will continue to perform for generations…
A: Neither the PCMs inside the packaging nor the package itself is food or nesting materials for any vermin. The packaging itself is a multilayered film laminate with aluminum and polymer blends.
A: No, typical suspended ceiling applications use less than a pound per sqft and are easily supported by suspension rigging.
A: Our product does everything people love about radiant barriers; however, we also utilize phase change technology. This means you get the best of both worlds. It is a product that controls all three forms of heat transfer: Convection, Conduction, and Radiation.
In residential homes, it lays directly on top of existing insulation.
Can be stapled under roof deck - Can be stapled under crawl spaces.
In commercial settings, it lays directly on suspended ceiling tiles.
A: It is possible to incorporate PCM into new construction, however, feasibility is incumbent on meeting with architects and code officials.
A: We do not operate like traditional - R-Value-based insulation. Instead, we control heat flow across the insulation layer. That being said, we have data that suggests a 2-3x improvement in existing R-Value when paired with traditional insulation.
Context: Keep in mind, R-Value is measured per inch.
Traditionally, limiting heat flow means placing resistance (“R” Value) in its path. In buildings, the “R Value” is usually ordinary thermal insulation, such as fiberglass, cellulose, or spray foam.
These traditional forms of insulation operate passively and with limited effectiveness. In contrast, Syndego PCMs controls heat flow in a different way. Syndego PCMs has little “R Value” because it doesn’t resist heat flow. Rather, it INTERCEPTS and DOWNGRADES the heat to its phase change temperature, then gradually releases thermal energy.
In the case of cooler climates where heating is the primary focus, the PCM will communicate with the internal climate-controlled space to capture and hold heat in the building.