What Is Perlite?
Perlite is a type of volcanic rock that was formed when lava cooled and solidified into a hard stone. When it cools again, it becomes magma. Magma is molten rock containing dissolved gases such as hydrogen sulfide (H2S), sulfur dioxide (SO 2 ), and potassium carbonate (K 2 CO 3 ). These gases are released during the cooling process. They cause the rock to become very porous, which allows them to escape through cracks and pores. Perlite is composed mostly of silica, with small amounts of other minerals. Silica is a common mineral found in rocks such as granite or basalt. It’s main function is to make up glass, but it also plays an important role in many other industries including cement production and firefighting foam. Perlite is not only useful for its use in concrete, but it can also be used in making various products like flooring, windowpanes, roofing materials and even medicine.
How Does Perlite Work?
Perlite acts as a good insulator. That means it keeps heat from escaping from your home or office. You may have noticed that some types of insulation do not work well with certain kinds of heating systems due to their poor thermal conductivity properties. This means they do not keep heat from escaping the building. However, perlite is a great choice because it is a good insulator and has excellent thermal conductivity properties. The ability to keep heat inside your building is vital for keeping your energy costs low. This type of rock is made up of tiny, closed cells which fill up with water and air. This small space in between these cells acts as an insulating barrier by stopping the transfer of heat to colder areas. This means your home or business will stay warm in winter and cool in summer, helping you to save money on your bills. You can also use this type of rock as acoustic wall insulation by installing it between studs. The closed cells become soundproof rooms by eliminating the transfer of vibrations.
What Are the Advantages of Using Perlite?
Most types of insulation have to be installed by professionals because it is very dangerous to work with due to its flammable nature. However, you can easily and safely work with perlite by installing it yourself. This type of rock is also more effective than some other types of insulation because it can be molded into any shape. It’s also easy to clean up and dispose of after its installation. There is no risk of toxic fumes and no harmful off-gassing either.
How Can You Use Perlite?
This type of rock can be used in many different ways in your home or office. It’s very easy to cut, drill, paint and glue which means you can easily mold it into any shape you like. You can use it as a filling material for window and door frames, around pipes, under flooring, around the chimney, between joists and under the subfloor of suspended floors. Many people also use it as an effective acoustic isolation layer between rooms. You can also line a bathtub or a fireplace with the rock, especially if you live in an old house that has no insulation.
How to Install Perlite
If you want to save money on your energy bills and improve the insulation in your home, you should definitely consider using this type of rock in your next home improvement project. The best way to do this is to use it as a soundproofing layer between walls. This works by creating a barrier to sound, rather than absorbing or blocking it. It can be installed as a layer between wooden studs or as a replacement for fiberglass in many different types of walls.
For best results, you should always install the layer between two layers of sheetrock and start from the top down. You should also make sure the layer is at least three quarters of an inch thick. Most types of perlite are very lightweight, so this shouldn’t be a problem unless you’re using a particularly large amount.
Another great way to use perlite is as a replacement for sand in your garden. Perlite is actually good for the soil and helps to aerate it, which is great for plants that like a lot of air around their roots. This also helps to keep moisture in the soil rather than allowing it to drain away, which is obviously very important if you live in an area that experiences a lot of droughts. You can also use it as a mulch in your flower bed or dig it around the base of trees to improve the health of their roots.
You can even use perlite to make a handy weed suppressing ground cover in areas that you don’t want anything to grow. The rock is non toxic and is not harmful if consumed by animals or humans so you don’t have to worry about that. It’s also very inexpensive, so it won’t cost you a lot of money to buy enough to cover the area that you want to use. And, as an added bonus, perlite will help to insulate any area that you put it in.
Installing the rock is very easy and can be done in a few different ways. One of the most common is to place the sheets on the ground and then stomp on them until they break down into smaller pieces that are no larger than three or four inches. You can also use a mortar rake to pull the chunks apart if you want to make them even smaller. One thing to remember is that the rock breaks down very quickly when it’s exposed to moisture, so if it’s rainy out, it’s going to break down a lot faster.
The material should be placed up against what you want to protect and create a barrier. You can use a wooden or plastic barrier to contain the perlite if you want to create a border around an area.
Perlite is a pretty amazing product that can be used for a wide range of things. It’s also very affordable and can save you money in the long run when used properly. Whether you’re looking to improve the insulation in your home, want to expand your garden or just want to keep animals out of certain areas, perlite can help.
If you want to learn more about perlite and how it can improve your home, contact a company like Sipic USA Inc. today.
Sources & references used in this article:
Defects of perlite as a medium for plant growth by WJ Wilson, J Tunny – Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture, 1965 – CSIRO
PERLITE BASED SOILLESS CULTURE SYSTEMS: CURRENT COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS AND PROSPECTS by M Lucas, E Bardopoulou, S Sarafopoulos… – … Symposium on Growing …, 1999 – actahort.org
Mark Your Calendars for the Perlite Institute Annual Meeting by S Lucas – 2014 – infigro.co.za
NMR imaging shows water distribution and transport in plant root systems in situ by PA Bottomley, HH Rogers… – Proceedings of the …, 1986 – National Acad Sciences