The Polar Advanatge

Jim Nugent, Regional Sales Manager

The primary function of rigid insulation on a building is to thermally protect the building envelop and provide energy savings and comfort to the occupants. Energy codes and experience are driving the growing of placing insulation on the outside of the building rather than inside the building. The new International Energy Code Conference (IECC) now has new standards for use of continuous insulation on the outside of a structure.

Products with higher vapor permeance like Foam-Control® Plus+® are proving to be ideal for perimeter foundations, under-slab, and cavity walls applications. Foam-Control® Plus+® has shown the characteristic to shed moisture in drying conditions which helps insure long-term R-value retention.  Less permeable insulation products like extruded polystyrene and polyisocyanurate have shown to retain moisture longer which impacts long-term R-value. Rigid insulation is not intended to be a waterproofing product, but in “real world” conditions, exterior insulations will be exposed to moisture.

Architects are starting to design certain wall assemblies where the air, water, vapor and thermal protection are all achieved with the insulation layer on the outside of the structure. In these assemblies a  product like Polar-R®, with low permeability, would be preferred. Polar-R® laminated sheathing is your solution for this application. Polar-R® is a composite of EPS rigid insulation thermally laminated on 2 sides with a film facer. Polar-R® with the appropriate detailing, provides thermal protection in addition to an air and moisture barrier in a single layer.

The versatility of the Polar line of film laminated EPS insulation products extends into the commercial roofing market with Polar Fold® roof recover board. Polar Fold® roof recover board is now the preferred insulation material when rebuilding over an existing roof with a new mechanically attached thermal plastic roof membrane. The lightweight moisture resistant insulation comes in a continuous 4’x50’ sheet (folded every 2’). The facer is specifically designed to be compatible with both TPO and PVC membranes.


Roofing contractors appreciate the lightweight yet very durable insulation and the large sheet that speeds installation and building owners appreciate the cost savings when the existing roof does not need to be removed but but a new roof can be installed directly on top.  The versatility of the Polar line of film laminated EPS products are giving contractors and owners new options to insulate and protect their building.

Construction details for using Polar-R® as a weather resistive barrier and Polar Fold® roof recover board can be found at

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