What is Polyurethane Foam?

Polyurethane is a type of polymer offered in both solid and foam form. Specifically, polyurethane foam has an open cellular structure to achieve this form and it can be rigid or flexible.

Some of the common types of polyurethane foam are memory foam, high resilience foam and high density foam. It is also often used as an insulating foam.

The experts at Adfast give you more information on polyurethane foam and its uses.

How polyurethane foam is made

High quality polyurethane foam is made by combining polyols and diisocyanates, by-products of crude oil, with various additives. These additives will depend on the intended use of the polyurethane foam being made.

Polyurethane foam uses

You probably encounter polyurethane foam more than you think. It is used in a wide variety of everyday items, such as mattresses, car seats, kitchen sponges, soundproofing systems and more!

Here are just a few of polyurethane foam’s many uses.

Auto industry

Flexible polyurethane foam is used in the car and transportation industry, especially in seat cushioning. This foam is appreciated in this industry due to its durability, even under severe conditions, and design freedom and versatility.

Polyurethane foam also helps with noise reduction and safety for passengers due to its sound and vibration-absorbing properties.

Building insulation

Polyurethane foam is used to make buildings more energy efficient. It can be used to insulate foundation walls from the interior and act as a high quality waterproofing, thermal and acoustic insulation. It can also be used to seal holes used for electrical cables, plumbing pipes and air ducts.

Rigid foams are typically used for thermal insulation, but different products can be used for different applications. For example, Adfoam 1850 was specially formulated for bonding thermal insulation panels and drywall.

Using polyurethane foam for home insulation can also prevent pest infestations, unlike other insulation materials that are perfect for their nests. This is because polyurethane foam will not deteriorate, shrink or create gaps after application.

Finally, it is also highly beneficial for building insulation due to its ability to limit flame spread with certain additives.


One of the most known uses of polyurethane foam is in mattresses. This material has been used in mattresses since the 1960s. It is often used as a base layer instead of spring coil. Polyurethane foam is inexpensive and lightweight, meaning mattress manufacturers can even save on shipping costs.

Is polyurethane foam safe?

Polyurethane foam, just like almost any other substance, releases gases and compounds known as volatile organic compounds into the air. Fortunately, this does not mean that your mattress or home is causing you harm while you sleep.

The released compounds are only harmful in very large quantities, but most polyurethane items you come in contact with release miniscule quantities. Some household items that contain polyurethane foam have also been tested and certified for safety.

Need polyurethane foam for your manufacturing assemblies?

In short, polyurethane foam is a polymer with a wide variety of everyday uses, including for home insulation. Polyurethane foam can therefore be purchased through different specialty companies depending on the type of foam you are looking for.

Adfast has various polyurethane foam products that can be used in many different manufacturing assemblies. Contact us for more information on polyurethane foam or our products. Our experts will gladly help you decide which product best suit your needs.