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Insulation and Sound Deadening - Cork Spray/Paint?

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Wondering if anyone has experience in using cork spray/paint as a sound deadener? As I want to go as non-toxic and sustainable as possible, I am going with Havelock wool (yes, I am aware of the potential challenges, but I am making a well researched calculated risk - there is no perfect insulation as far as I can see....if there was, there would be no debate!), and I was looking at a sound deadener to use in addition when I came across cork spray - but I cannot find any reference to it in the forum.
Here are a few links:

It is non toxic (uses water based resins), a thermal insulator, water repellant and mould resistant - so, if I was to use this on the inside of the van and then overlay with wool insulation, do you think these could work in synergy to both dampen the sound as well as increase insulation potential? Do you think there would be any negative effects of doing this? If anyone knows of anyone who has done this, please point m in their direction. Right now, it all seems like it could really make sense...but I have been down the build rabbit hole for quite a few hours so may be missing something!

Thanks in advance for the input! :)
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There's no such thing as "environmentally friendly" when it comes to anything man-made.
So, no reason to stress about or make that a consideration.
As far as it's use, I haven't heard of it used in a van before (possibly someone has). So, no reports on longevity, how well it adheres to metal and stays adhered, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
There's no such thing as "environmentally friendly" when it comes to anything man-made.
So, no reason to stress about or make that a consideration.
As far as it's use, I haven't heard of it used in a van before (possibly someone has). So, no reports on longevity, how well it adheres to metal and stays adhered, etc.
It's all relative I suppose - in my opinion, there is a big difference between using sustainable and renewable materials over petrochem based ones - particularly from an indoor air quality perspective. If I can choose the lesser of 2 evils that has a less negative impact on the environment and my health, then that is a step in the right direction and one worth taking. The irony of driving a big hunk of metal that runs on gas is not lost on me, trust me, but here we are!
On one of the sites, I saw it was used on the outside of a food truck - similar to lizard skin I guess, except cork spray seems to have been used in Europe for well over a decade with great results - so assuming it adheres well to metal. Hopefully someone will have experience with it.
Thanks for the input!
 

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You probably won't get much/any feedback from folks who have used it.
If I had to guess, I'd say it will be a good all-in-one product, but won't be great at any one thing. R factor is probably relatively low for the thickness that will be applied.
But I don't see it hurting anything.
I say go for it.
Let us know how the application goes and how it performs and holds up over time.
 

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It's all relative I suppose - in my opinion, there is a big difference between using sustainable and renewable materials over petrochem based ones - particularly from an indoor air quality perspective. If I can choose the lesser of 2 evils that has a less negative impact on the environment and my health, then that is a step in the right direction and one worth taking. The irony of driving a big hunk of metal that runs on gas is not lost on me, trust me, but here we are!
On one of the sites, I saw it was used on the outside of a food truck - similar to lizard skin I guess, except cork spray seems to have been used in Europe for well over a decade with great results - so assuming it adheres well to metal. Hopefully someone will have experience with it.
Thanks for the input!
Hi Holisticvanlife

I live in Victoria & worked in the local construction industry since the very early 80s. I looked at the “cork” website you posted. I could not find the technical specifications (Im not looking all that hard, but I cant find them). Can you find the technical specs and post them here? This would be the first step in analyzing your request. If manufacturers do not post performance specs & building science testing to specific to specific testing standards then in my opinion they get red flagged & placed into “snake oil” sales category. Manufacturers know that they need to test and produce these technical results so Architects & Engineers will consider their products and incorporate them into their designs (hence the red flag if these are not front & center).

I could run this past several “Building Envelope P.Eng.“ that owe me favors to get an engineering review, but I am suspect of this product as the “pedigree“ the tech data is not “readily” presented (at least I cant find it).

I’m going to assume building construction is not your forte as if it was you would have posted what anyone that knows anything in construction would need to provide an expert or pseudo expert opinion (the tech data).

So if you can help us help you, post the cork tested data here & we can review.

Here is an example of “technical product testing specifications“;
64049
 

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It's easy to get overwhelmed by all the conflicting opinions, especially when you are just getting started down a new path. Sound-deadening and insulation are usually the first decisions we are confronted with. Many of us have installed both sound-deadening and insulation (me included) because "lots of people do it, and it couldn't hurt", not because of any objective evidence. Remember people advocating one method over another generally have no real basis for comparison. They didn't try more than one method. Plus, once we've committed to something, we try to convince ourselves and others that it was the best choice.

From my own practical experience, Noico sound-deadening makes a big difference all by itself, but not when combined with poly-iso insulation. I found Poly-iso to be a really great sound-deadener all by itself. I have not worked with wool, but I suspect it may also be a good sound-deadener, based on similar claims for other batting materials, like Thinsulate. Personally, I would not bother with sound-deadening again, but it also didn't hurt anything except my pocketbook. Your call.
 

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Hi,
Certainly an interesting product that I had never seen before.

I'm curious as to how much they would charge to spray the inside of your van?

I wonder what is in it besides cork? There must be some kind of binder to make it hold up as well as it does to abrasion, weather etc. If you just mix ground up cork with water and spray it on surfaces, its would certainly not hold up nearly as well as their material does. So, if there is some kind of resin binder, is it still going to be the environmentally friendly and non-toxic material you are looking for? I could not even find an MSDS sheet on their website.
I'd definitely ask them what is in the stuff, and if they won't tell you, I'd be very suspicious.

They talk about its insulating properties, but if they are only going to spray on (say) 1/8 inch, the R value of cork is R3.6 per inch, so 1/8 is going to get you about R0.5 -- not much. You would have to spray it an inch thick to begin to get to a level of insulation that would be good for a van.

I have to agree with RV8R that the lack of much of anything on material specs for the product is a red flag for sure.

Gary
 

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[Many people do things] because "lots of people do it, and it couldn't hurt", not because of any objective evidence.
Plus, once we've committed to something, we try to convince ourselves and others that it was the best choice
1000% true.
Worded perfectly. I think I might save this quote because I'm sure I can find a place to insert it in 99% of the threads I read.
Another one I hear a lot beside "it couldn't hurt", is "I haven't had any issues".
One of my personal favorites.
 

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Cork is an amazing sound deadener when put on top of concrete, but it's not easy to find references with quantification for other uses. It's a renewable resource with an R-value of about 4 per inch. So it's not a bad thought to incorporate cork into an insulation plan. A roll of 1/2 inch underlayment in your insulation layer is probably the most affordable way to use cork. Others have said, however that a layer of Polyiso already provides excellent sound absorption ... so it might not be worthwhile. Remember that as long as you have any open window or vent fan those will be letting in a lot of noise already. It might be hard to notice the difference of a cork layer in that situation. I think if the Polyiso is decoupled from the van skin, it might provide even better sound deadening, so I'm looking at that as an option.
 
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