ceramic powder paint additive--really insulating?

13 years ago

Mentioned in Parade Mag today, in an article in reducing energy costs: adding a non-toxic ceramic powder to interior wall paint will insulate the room permanently.

Is this true? And if so, (how) does it change the look of the paint? Does it distribute evenly? When to put it in? What brand is the best/most accessible? Sounds like a wonderful upgrade, if it really is feasible.

All information/opinions/leads/caveats/how-tos gratefully accepted :)

Comments (74)

  • wisrose
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    This is the first that i have heard of this technology and i am certainly interested in lowering heating bills here in wisconsin. Am i able to buy this ceramic powder at a local home improvement store? are there other brands that are just as good or is this homeprotex the only place i can get it? how much does it cost?
    thank you for any information i can get

  • mikie_gw
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    I bought a bunch of the beads from at around $10 per gal for the beads only.

    But for me the better product & value too was buying 5 gal pales of paint with the beads already in it from at around $100 each.

    Did the exterior of the house and yes it made big difference on the a/c bill... considerably less. It also made a big difference in the winter heating bill too... its way more! - lacking that solar heat gain.

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  • texasrbs
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Lots of great discussions! I have seen many claims made by these companies but have yet to see proof.

    Customer testimonials are great but unreliable at best as most people want to believe a certain technology is going to work if they spend money, time, and effort on it.

    I have a large amount of experience with insulating ceramics and 'radiant barrier' paints. Some simple truths to clear the air about this topic...

    1) Any type of radiant barrier (Foil or Paint) does 100% of it's work on the surface. It REFLECTS heat, does not slow down conductive heat transfer. It's all about e-value or emissivity. Here is how I know...

    2) Ceramic material inherently has have emissivity and low reflectivity levels. Ceramic bricks on the shuttle are not 4 feet thick but they are about 4 inches thick. I know, I have one 2 feet from me now. They do work against conductive heat transfer as the air molecules are creating friction on the surface of the bricks and the bricks greatly SLOW DOWN the transfer of heat, not reflect it(the heat is already on the surface of the brick).

    3) Lets review. Company makes ceramic powder. Says it has a hollow center in these spheres but can't prove it. Says they have amazing insulating powers, yet has no testing to substantiate this (and no reason why they do not). I have a 16 page report from a college professor in Turkey that can't prove a significant reduction in heat transfer. He proves Ceramic Paints work better then Latex paint, but not 1' thick extruded foam board. I have a hard time believing that any object mixed in any paint could actually reflect heat as it is covered with paint!

    Go into your bathroom and paint your mirror. Can you still see your reflection? Ultraviolet and Infrared waves act in much the same way visible light waves act and react to surfaces.

    If anyone can provide me with proof that insulating ceramics work well enough to actually have an effect on residential or commercial energy usage, I will ship you 20 gallons worth of the Hy-Tech powder as that is about what I have left over after doing some very extensive testing on my own. I'll ship you the powder if you can even give me a reason why these companies cannot prove their products work with some kind of recognized test format.

    Thanks for the good debates and good luck.

  • mikie_gw
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    I'd speculate that it depends a Whole Bunch> on what the paint base consists of that you mix those magic beads into.

    Seems some paints retain heat much more than others, some tints probably hold heat even better.
    I wasnt thrilled walking around measuring temps with hytech beads in kilz primer... but was thrilled with NatCoat ceramic paint that supposedly all the ingreadiants where choosen with disapating heat in mind.

    Stuff works well on my house.

  • homeprotex
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    The properties of the paint have no effect on how true ceramics work to reflect heat and block its transfer. Surface temperature measurements will also show no difference. A measurement on the back side of the painted surface, however, will show a distinct difference.
    Surface temperature measurements are based only on color of the paint and the shortcomings of a non contact thermometer. The readings from these type of devices can be changed based on color, sheen, and texture of the surface. Your results most likely showed a positive result due to the fact that a new coat of white paint was applied.

    National Coatings does not use ceramics. They use borosilicate glass beads (if anything). This is a material that is manufactured from recycled glass and is usually used as an inexpensive filler for plastics and concrete.

    As far as the comments from texasrbs...
    Much of what he is trying to refer to has to do with radiant barrier coatings. This is a completely different type of product.
    The comments made are quite incorrect. Emissivity means nothing. It's a very complicated subject...and since we are not talking about radiant barrier coatings in this thread I'll not bore anyone with the details.
    The simple truth is that white paint has an emissivity of .9. Black paint has an emissivity of .9.
    Which one would you rather paint with?

    Another point that should be noted when considering these comments is that texasrbs is not an impartial open minded member of the forum.
    He is a former distributor for Hy-Tech. He paid a licensing fee for the rights to a territory after a great deal of research and even visited their facility.
    He was let go by the company due to questionable business practices.
    Just something that readers of this thread should be aware of.

    Again...all I know is that true ceramics work. They have lowered my personal bills, those of my family and friends, and because of that have become a large part of the services I offer my customers (all of whom are quite happy with the results).

    Since NASA and nationally recognized home improvement experts are on board...that's good enough for me.

  • brickeyee
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    "Since NASA and nationally recognized home improvement experts are on board...that's good enough for me."

    And that is pure BS also.
    The INDEPENDENT testing performed on this garbage has shown it is NO MORE EFFECTIVE than any other paint of the same color.

    Snake oil has always been expensive.
    It is very hard to extract oil from snakes.

  • homeprotex
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Really....brick...we get it.
    We ALL get it. You don't like the stuff. Don't think it works. Won't make the slightest attempt to educate yourself by reading a website. Won't take me up on my offer of sending me an email so that I can help. Know nothing of what you're talking about....

    You just want to keep screaming BS...

    The only thing that is BS and NOT EFFECTIVE is your uneducated opinion.
    The only thing you are doing at this point is embarrassing yourself.

    You must be great fun at parties ;-)

  • brickeyee
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    "We ALL get it. You don't like the stuff. Don't think it works. Won't make the slightest attempt to educate yourself by reading a website. Won't take me up on my offer of sending me an email so that I can help. Know nothing of what you're talking about...."

    i have reviewed all the site on this crap, and it remains just that crap.
    Guess all that time for a PhD was just wasted.

    You are the one embarrassing yourself by posting test results from sources that have NO specific knowledge what they are testing.
    I hire grad students to run tests, but would never stoop to trying to claim that the university "endorsed' the product.

    You claim NASA support, yet NOTHING indicates NASA tested an evaluated the product.

    When you can post a cogent explanation of what the product is in physics and engineering terms, and HOW it works in the same terms you can gain some credibility, until than all you have is "Billy Joe Bob says it works."

    You have yet to post a SINGLE fact that explains anything.
    You sound just like the fools selling magnets to 'soften' water; do you have a franchise for that also?

  • homeprotex
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    And brickhead says...

    "i have reviewed all the site on this crap, and it remains just that crap.
    Guess all that time for a PhD was just wasted."
    Well...apparently it was...if grammar and syntax had anything to do with the curriculum.

    Really dude...don't type angry. Slow down and preview the post first. That way...they might make more sense. I doubt it...but there's always the chance.

    All of our differences aside...I do have to thank you.
    Your posts have driven a great deal of traffic to the Hy-Tech site...and these people have actually read and grasped the concept. They have purchased the product and experienced lower utility bills.

    The owner of Hy-Tech was kind enough to share the wealth that you if your ears are burning around 8p.m.'s because the wife and I will be toasting you with a good red wine over a great Angus steak.

    Best of luck to you....and the floor is now yours for the "last word" that you seem to desperately require.

    I'm out....

  • sierraeast
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Sitting on top of a hill, there was an old wise bull and a young bull. Down in the pasture below was a bunch of female cows grazing. The young bull jumped up and said to the wise old bull, "lets RUN down the hill and get us ONE"! The wise old bull turned to the young'n and said, " no, lets WALK down the hill and get them ALL"!

  • mikie_gw
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Standing out in the dark shooting the wall temps, NatCoat's recycled glass bead in their paint worked better than the HyTech ceramic beads in Kilz.
    Light beige painted oncrete block wall, that retained heat all the way up to sunrise, were at ambient temps a couple hours after sundown with NatCoat, where the ceramic beads in kilz was above ambience until around 2 am.
    Same west wall, same night, same two or three coats.

    Measuring temps on interior of an inside wall that was a heat generator - stucco over wood, cubby holes and bookshelfs on the inside -no insulation. The inside showed surfaces at the indoor ambiant temp with NatCoat and a slight rise with HyTech/Kilz.

  • sierraeast
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Mikie, does national coating make a product for interior use, ceilings and inside of the exterior walls, or does it matter interior vs exterior application? Thanks!

  • mikie_gw
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    They have seperate, interior & exterior.

  • sierraeast
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Thanks again,mikey. We have an exterior stucco w/ an acrylic color coat tha hasn't been put on yet. Im told that the additives can be used in the acrylic color coat as well. I was thinking of the inside and doing the walls and ceilings. We already have radiant barrier for heat retention on the walls put on before the exterior wall sheathing and on the ceiling put up before sheet rock. This method is somewhat contoversial so i thought the additives interior might be extra insurance.

  • texasrbs
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    "As far as the comments from texasrbs...
    Much of what he is trying to refer to has to do with radiant barrier coatings. This is a completely different type of product.
    The comments made are quite incorrect. Emissivity means nothing. It's a very complicated subject...and since we are not talking about radiant barrier coatings in this thread I'll not bore anyone with the details.
    The simple truth is that white paint has an emissivity of .9. Black paint has an emissivity of .9.
    Which one would you rather paint with?"

    You are correct....this is a completely different type of coating.

    It bothers me greatly when a company like Hy-Tech is spending a LOT of advertising money on advertising their Low E coating when it is not a low e coating. As PROVEN by independent testing!!!
    Search google for radiant barrier paint, you will see this companies ad stating "low e coating"
    That sure looks like this company is outright lying to it potential customers to me!

    All I am asking for is PROOF. It's that simple! Can ANYONE give me ANY proof. I can give you proof the coatings I install everyday for people works. Even if it isn't a Low E coating or suppose to work like a radiant barrier does, can you show me proof it does what you say? So far the answer has been no!

    "Another point that should be noted when considering these comments is that texasrbs is not an impartial open minded member of the forum.
    He is a former distributor for Hy-Tech. He paid a licensing fee for the rights to a territory after a great deal of research and even visited their facility.
    He was let go by the company due to questionable business practices.
    Just something that readers of this thread should be aware of."

    Again, you are correct, we paid for territory. Unfortunately, our agreement was not honored. We no longer distribute for Hy-Tech Thermal Solutions because of this and the fact that I have yet to receive any actual proof from the company like was originally promised. If anyone would like to know more, please email me, this forum is not the proper place to argue the details. I will be open minded as I have always been and can only hope to always be. I absolutely understand that I am not the end all authority on this subject. Please help me to understand your points by showing me something proving that these ceramic technologies work like the manufacturers say they do.

    After doing a lot of research into companies selling ceramic paint and powders, I have found that every single one claims great results with no proof. Only "NASA" marketing that I can pay for and testimonials.

    Offer: great savings and heat transfer reduction.
    Proof: ???

    Do not accept customer testimonials and marketing as a substitute for proof.

    Again, Does anyone have proof?

    Heat savings ceramics have been highlighted in NASA Spinoff Magazines.

    True Low E coatings have their own classification by the department of Energy. One of these, you can submit your own article and have it published. The other one requires actual proof.

    Enough for now...Thanks for reading and making up your own mind.

    Chris -

  • homeprotex
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Chris writes:
    " this forum is not the proper place to argue the details. "

    Good point. Then why do you go on to not only do that, but then invite people to email you directly? Is it possible that it's much easier to lie and slander when no one else is watching?

    The thread is about ceramics. You jump in and want to talk about radiant barrier aluminum coatings. That is what I meant by 'different type'.

    You talk a lot about "proof". This test you refer to sure seems to mean a lot to you. So why don't you answer some questions? Let's see what value your "proof" has.

    The test for emissivity, are the results affected by things like the gloss, texture, and color of the surface?
    If emissivity means so much, why does both black and white paint have the same number (.9)?
    Has a real world study of radiant barrier coatings ever been performed?
    What is the ASTM study for reflectivity of heat?

    You also talk about things being "honored".
    Here's what I KNOW.
    I found the website and contacted Hy-Tech for more information. I was told that there was a distributor, not in my area, but close. They sent me to you and I'm not even in the territory you "bought".
    I met you at your makeshift "office" and shook your hand. You did not tell me about Hy-Tech products. You told me you had switched and were just doing a radiant barrier spray. No ceramics, no other options, just a chemical based spray. I called Hy-Tech after our meeting and told them. Even talked to the owner, and he had no idea you were doing things like that when they sent you potential business.

    I bought their product (ceramics) direct. Spent my money and put it on my home. 114 whole dollars for a test. Not much to lose in case it was nothing. It worked really well. I put 45 dollars back in my pocket the next month from lower bills. Bought more. Painted my parent's house. More great results.
    What have you painted with ceramics? Your house? Do you have one? Anyone's house?

    You showed me what you're made of when we met. The people you want to email you don't have that option.

    You might also want to tell them that your extensive background in coating and ceramics is based on being the "cable guy". Isn't that where you came from, not that long ago?

    Anyone with a brain will see you for what you are.
    All the others will email you.

  • mahatmacat1
    Original Author
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    homeprotex, you said:
    "The owner of Hy-Tech was kind enough to share the wealth that you if your ears are burning around 8p.m.'s because the wife and I will be toasting you with a good red wine over a great Angus steak."

    Ahem...if you want to be that way about it, *I'm* the person who started the thread and provided the first link to the site; if you say that traffic was driven to the site, and you got remunerated for it, I say that's a bit sleazy on your part. I see you very differently now. I also see the owner of Hy-Tech differently, now, too, unfortunately. Says nothing good about either of you.

    (quote from my second post on this thread that *I* started:) "Here's one I found...WOW re the claims/testimonials...anyone here have any experience with this?

    Here is a link that might be useful: hytech additives/paint"

    I don't want money for having linked to the site, but your motives have suddenly become extremely clear. Promotion/advertising is not allowed on this site for a good reason. I wish now I'd never started the thread.

  • mikie_gw
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    A good forum exchange of unpleasantries is always a good thing. Gives you somewhere to go to when you're boored.

    I caught that too,, the wow,, the dinner with hytech,,, laughing at everybody. Speaks poorly of posters in general. Hard to put much faith the words from someone like that. Good for some chuckles ;)

    Think we all know, hytech,, has too many pages with too much hype,,, too many web names and search submissions which makes many have more than a slight loss of trust in the company,,the products, and their prices.

  • homeprotex
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Reading comprehension seems to be extremely difficult for some people.

    Let's take this slowly so you can follow along...

    Fly made a posting. Asked if anyone had used a product. Nothing out of the ordinary there...

    The FIRST reply was from someone who had not read the website, knows nothing about the product, and has never used it. responded with something about R value. This means that you did not read much of the site and never even saw the FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS. R value is NUMBER ONE!

    I posted for one reason. I have used the product (that's what you asked for, right?)

    I found a website last year. Products sounded interesting, but too good to be true.
    I read the site. Followed the links. Contacted NASA about the Spinoff article.
    In short...I did my homework. Just like I do when I buy *anything*.
    I bought product. Spent a whole $114. Not much to gamble, I figured.
    I painted my house. Two coats...just like they tell you to.
    My electric bill dropped by $45. Simple enough.
    I bought some more. Another $114. Painted my parent's house.
    The next month...their bill went down too.
    Their neighbor was curious but skeptical. When he saw their two bills (before and after) he bought some and painted. His bill went down as well.
    Seemed like it was working to me.

    I am a contractor will 4 crews and I work in several states. I am always researching products and anything related to the building / renovation industry. I am a member of several trade organizations and regularly attend trade shows around the country. It's my business.

    So I liked the product so much I wanted to include it in my offerings to customers. Not really a big deal. I sell lots of products. Can't build or renovate without products, right? I purchase every couple of months...just like I do with LOTS of products.

    Here's the simple read slowly..

    The person who continues to post with an amazing amount of negativity about something he knows nothing about and has never used...has actually driven people to ask about the products. Both to me and the company. They mention his name and quote his posts. Why negativity motivates people is beyond me...but it does.
    People have read the website, called the company, ordered, and experienced lower bills. Simple facts.

    So I call the company to place another regular order (I buy in pallet quantities because product is cheaper).
    The owner (who is well aware of this thread) tells me he'll ship this order for free. His way of saying thanks for continuing to respond and try to educate someone who has not used the product...and has no idea what they are talking about. It was said in a joking manner...and we laughed about it.
    I bought 30 thousand dollars of Hy-Tech product in the last year...and he sends me a shipment with no shipping cost.

    Tell me how that's wrong! How is that "sleazy"?

    My motives are to run a very successful business, offer quality service and products to my customers, and provide a good living to the families of the 32 people who work for me.

    You asked if anyone has used the product because you saw it in a national publication. It was in there because a nationally recognized home improvement expert has used it. They interviewed her and asked for energy saving tips. She mentioned it.
    You asked...I've used it...I answered.

    I sell Pella windows, Armstrong flooring, and CertainTeed shingles as well. I guess I shouldn't respond to any threads about them either...according to your "logic".

    And mikie...
    You must be "boored" a lot. Walking around your house at 2am with a thermometer...
    You complain because a company has "too many pages" on their website? Because they have more than one site?
    I see Home Depot ads on more than one TV station...I guess I should have "more than a slight loss of trust" in them too.
    It's called advertising....genius.
    But of course YOU'RE the one who should decide how that should be done. How many business have you run? How many people do you provide a living for?

    You don't even know what you painted your own house with. First you said ceramics (because that's what the company said)...then you said glass (because I corrected you).
    I researched Nationwide as well. I know the guys there. I've toured the plant. Have you?
    I know what's on *your* don't.
    You are the proud owner of plain white paint.

    You should flip-flop back to your corner and just watch the show.

  • mikie_gw
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    you havent a clue
    pat yourself on the back

  • shidev
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Hello all,

    It has been interesting reading the posts. Can anyone tell me if this ceramic powder paint additive is effective for sound reduction? I was thinking of painting it on a concrete ceiling which acts as the floor of the apartment above to block footsteps and furniture scraping across the floor. Thanks.

  • JRinPDX_hotmail_com
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Wow! What a thread!

    I'm a homeowner, doing a big renovation and as things are winding up, I'm finally thinking about paint. I'm in a 50+ year old house that never had any insulation until I put it in.

    I'm seriously thinking about using the Hy-Tech products. Compared to the total project cost, it's immaterial and if it doesn't work, it won't be doing any harm.

    My question is about the aluminum radiant barrier. Wouldn't that block wireless internet and cellphone signals?

    Does anybody have any experience with that?

    One more item re/the debate last fall:

    If I were a Hy-Tech guy, I'd use this thread to identify where people are conused or misled, or just have questions and then provide clear answers via the Hy-Tech website. An evening's worth of work might really pay off. Just think of the people who have similar questions that aren't posting here.


  • mikie_gw
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Buy some of the HyTech magic beads and put them in the NatCoat primer. Or just have NatCoat add extra recycled glass(same stuff your oven window is made out of).

  • homeprotex
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    @ JRinPDX

    Re: the aluminum barrier paint
    I've got it in my attic and some interior rooms as a base coat. There haven't been any problems with wireless internet, cordless or cell phone reception. I also contacted the company and was told they have never heard of this being a problem in any application.

    Re: information on a website
    I mentioned that to my contact at the company.
    It's pretty much impossible to make any website that will make every single person happy. The frustrating thing (according to a web developer) is even when the information is there, some people refuse to look. When questions come up that are clearly listed in the FAQ it's obvious.

    People can always post here or start a new thread if they want to. They would just have to put up with some incorrect and uninformed opinions. That is the nature of the internet age we live in.
    Fortunately there is a percentage of people who, although they don't jump into the posting fray, will send email either to me (because I've offered) or the company directly.

    Good luck with your renovation!!

  • jpss
    13 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    What this Florida company is still in business?
    I actually TRIED the HyTech 'insulative' paint last year
    and ... it does not work!
    Ordinary white paint works much better, my flat roof is now
    much cooler than with Hy Tech (I'm glad i did a small 'test
    area' with HyTech first, so my roof is not completely soiled)
    I still remember the warm touch underneath the Hy Tech area
    As much as i want to greenify my house and believe in the
    idea of ceramic additives thermal insulation, HyTech roof guard
    does not work and seems to be a BIG SCAM
    Just look at these dozen same websites with all the colors
    and NASA logos everywhere, i should have been suspicious
    right there

  • hairymary
    11 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    does it still work under subsequent layers of paint?

  • User
    11 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    I want to try this concept myself, just on the personal experiences detailed above. Do I have this correct:

    Add the ceramic beads to my paint of choice and apply two coats to

    A. The interior walls and ceilings on the north side of the house and the upper rooms (converted attic of a cape)
    B. The exterior walls of the south side of the house.

  • homeprotex
    11 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Absolutely yes, you understand completely correctly.
    For better results, you can use the radiant barrier coating (the one with aluminum, #85) first. It provides the radiant barrier properties of aluminum with another layer of ceramics.
    You can paint just the areas you mentioned, but obviously you will get the best results possible if you paint more areas.

    Best of luck with your painting project!!

  • brickeyee
    11 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    This crap is still around?


    You should market power factor correctors as long as you are selling this stuff.

  • greengirl_2010
    11 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Installing real insulation in an existing house is tough. That is, actual between-the-wall fiberglass insulation. Not many options exist for you.

    If you're tearing out plaster or drywall--well, go ahead. Walls are open, so it's just as easy as installing it in a new construction building. Roll it out, cut it, staple it, and there you have it. If you're not opening walls, blown-in insulation is a distant second. This entails opening holes in your exterior and pumping in with a blower. But even the experts can't ensure 100% fill. Wall interiors have all sorts of funny things inside that are difficult to anticipate: firestops, criss-crossing wires, oversized plaster "keys" that invade the space. So how about insulating paint?

    Nansulate, Insuladd, and Other Insulating Paints
    There are several types of insulating paints, the prominent of which are Nansulate, Insuladd, Hy-Tech, and others. The way they work is that you either apply the insulating (or thermal) paint to the interior walls or you mix an additive into your existing paint. Multiple coats are recommended. The first and most important point to note is that any kind of paint coverage will add insulating properties to your house--insulating or thermal paint just takes it beyond. Far beyond.

    Insulating Paint's Properties

    Hy-Tech says that its ceramic-based paint creates a tight, thin vacuum layer that deters the passage of heat or cold. Microscopic ceramic beads no bigger than a grain of flour form this vacuum surface. As you may now, vacuums hinder thermal properties. That's why double-paned windows often have a vacuum layer between the panes, or a gas such as argon or krypton.

    Insulating Paint: Does It Work?

    I always get suspicious when a product claims that it was "developed by NASA." But after closer inspection, it does appear that insulating paint additive really was developed by NASA's Ames Research Center. So the product exists and it does work. Exacty how well it works is debatable. Different manufacturers claim different results. Hy-Tech says that since "R" values can only be measured on materials one-inch thick or greater, paint cannot legitimately be compared. They say that in their own tests, comparing their additive with one-inch thick insulation, both hindered heat transfer by 35%. Insulating paint will not replace a good thick layer of R-19 fiberglass between your walls. But if you have no other choice--and if you have a fat wallet, because thermal paint and additives are expensive--you may want to try it.

  • earthworm
    10 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    I've read enough. Brick is using a ton of common sense.
    The argument is won when the other side resorts to insults.
    Snake oil salesmen are smarter than ever, but its still snake oil.
    I have yet to hear from an "independent lab", funded by us taxpayers.
    Labs paid for by the business cannot be trusted.

  • halskinner
    10 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    If you add an additive to any paint, you just voided the warranty.

    There are a whole lot of underperforming coatings out there but the EPA has recently changed the requirements for them to earn the Energy Star as a 'Roof Coating'. No more self-certifications as of January 1st, 2011. Third party certifications only.

    Heat energy travels by three modes; Conduction, Convection and Radiation. Radiant heat travels towards cold in every direction, including straight down.

    Our ceramic coating is also used as an interior and exterior paint. It is a heat barrier against all three forms of heat transfer nd it is extremely effective and versatile. It applies and looks exactly like paint.

    Where many companies offer huge claims and zero proof, we have 25-years worth of statements, energy calculations and pictures.

    We are the real deal.

  • simbars_aol_com
    10 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Scientific American

    What Are the Benefits of "Insulating" Paint?

    Do these products actually save energy or do more harm to the environment?

    : July 15, 2009 : 9


    Insulating paints should merely be the icing on the cake of an otherwise well-conceived plan to cut heating and cooling costs, and not be used in place of traditional bulk insulation. Image: Getty Images

    Dear EarthTalk: Do insulating paints actually insulate and save energy? If they do, are they environmentally friendly to use?
    -- Bob Dibrindisi, Easthampton, MA

    Paint additives that claim insulating qualities have been marketed since the late 1990s, but energy research organizations have not confirmed their insulating value. For its part, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) does not recommend using paints or coatings in place of traditional bulk insulation. "We haven�t seen any independent studies that can verify their insulating qualities," the agency reports. The federal government does rate roofing paint for its energy efficiency, but such findings only take into account a substance�s ability to reflect heat off the roof�not its insulating properties per se�to keep the building cooler.

    According to the Department of Energy�s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the use of so-called insulated paints is in most cases "difficult to justify on the basis of savings in energy costs alone." Meanwhile, the non-profit EnergyIdeas Clearinghouse, a partnership between Washington State University and the nonprofit Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, found that under ideal circumstances insulating paints can achieve a "reduction in heat gain" of around 20 percent on freshly-painted sun-exposed walls, but notes that such walls will only face direct sunlight for a limited part of even the clearest summer day. Also, the clearinghouse reports that "heat gain reductions�are significant only for sun-bathed surfaces" and that the "reflectivity of the painted surface generally declines considerably with time."

    Alex Wilson of the website is not a fan of insulating paints: "To say that there is a lot of hype about insulating paints�is an understatement," he tells the website "The Internet is rife with claims of paints that dramatically reduce heat transfer�usually based on some technological magic spun off from NASA. While these products may have some relevance in the extreme conditions of outer space, manufacturers of paints containing [insulating additives] are making claims that defy the laws of physics�when they claim they can save significant energy in buildings."

    Nevertheless, for certain applications, especially in concert with traditional forms of insulation underneath, insulating paint can help reduce energy expenditures and air conditioning bills accordingly. For those who want to forge ahead with insulating paint despite the limited benefits, some of the leading brands to look for include Insuladd, Hy-Tech, Therma-Guard and Eagle Coatings� SuperTherm.

    Adding insulating paint should merely be the icing on the cake of an otherwise well-conceived plan to cut heating and cooling costs. Installing a traditional form of insulation would be the first defense. A reflective, radiant barrier on the roof structure in the attic also could offer significant help, according to the Florida Solar Energy Center. Thermal-pane windows and energy-conscious practices will contribute to the effort. Finally, consider trees and other landscape shading, which the U.S. Department of Energy recommends as an effective way of passively cooling your home. For more ideas, visit the "do-it-yourself energy audit tool" on the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory�s Home Energy Saver website.

    CONTACTS: U.S. EPA,; EnergyIdeas Clearinghouse,; Insuladd,, Hy-Tech,; Eagle Coatings,; Therma-Guard,; Home Energy Saver,

    EarthTalk is produced by E/The Environmental Magazine. SEND YOUR ENVIRONMENTAL QUESTIONS TO: EarthTalk, P.O. Box 5098, Westport, CT 06881; Read past columns at: EarthTalk is now a book! Details and order information at:

  • hollis2008
    9 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Okay, you might find plenty of fault in my testing methods but here's what I did. Also please forgive typos as I'm using a voice-recognition software because as I have very little time today to do this, and the software has not been fully trained yet and makes mistakes,... and I will probably not be going back over this to do any corrections.

    I wanted to test these products as it certainly would be a very simple way of saving energy in the apartments that I own. Actually I really wanted them to work. I have used a number of products many of them that have been mentioned here.

    My rudimentary testing consisted of using aluminum soda cans of the same brand. On each product I coated the outside of the aluminum cans with two coats of the product on one can and 10 coats of the same product on the other. I coated them completely including the bottom and the tops.

    I inserted electronic probes on the inside 3 inches deep that would suspend same at the same level in each can. These probes are pretty sensitive and usually register on the same 10th of a degree if left into a sealed box when reopened.

    I used Cerama Tech, Insulaid , Hy Tech, Super Therm, and Nano Tech. Two cans each, coated with the 2 and 10 coats. I also had one can coated with plain flat white paint and another with gloss white paint.

    In the summer I would have the cans indoors in relatively cool air conditioning until they registered the same temperatures. A few times I had them in freezers. I would then bring them outside and put them in the sun. Sometime I would also do the same and bring them outside and leave them in the shade. I also compared them to cans painted in flat white, and gloss white.

    There was virtually no difference in the rate of heat gain and any of the products and no heat gain difference in the flat white can. There was a slight slowing down of heat gain in the white gloss paint which did a tiny bit better than any of the so-called insulative paints.

    I repeated the same test although I couldn't be as certain with the paint films by repeating a swirling around paint several times on the inside of the can and then letting it dry with the help of a blow dryer but as far as I could tell by trying to look into the cans with a small light,.. they looked well coated.I did this several times and feel that they were well coated with a fairly thick layer

    In the winter I did virtually the same thing taking them out from a hot room to the outside which was below freezing. They lost heat at all the same rate including the gloss paint. By the way all the cans were very well sealed so no air could get in or out.

    I was told by one manufacturer that "Oh well That's why it didn't perform well it was probably because you had too little air volume" however I don't see how that would make any difference.

    And more of a real world test I did the same with several identical apartments the same wall space facing outward and both having electric heat. Both on the same floor with the same window space and orientation. It happened to be the both of these apartments were vacant the months of January and February.I set the electric heat temperature at 70 degrees. I used two coats of Super Therm and two coats of Cerama Tech (4 all together) on the insides of the outside facing walls in one apartment. There was no appreciable door openings in either apartment during that month.

    Electric heat maybe expensive but it's 100% efficient when it gets to your house. it's much more accurate for measuring heat loss than oil or gas.

    The month of January the electrical usage in kilowatt hours was virtually identical in both apartments. In February after one of the apartments were coated with the so called insulative paints applied, the electrical usage was again identical in both apartments.

    You can argue how unscientific and crude my methods are but I don't think I want to waste anymore time trying to make insulative paints work.

    This seals it for me.

  • hollis2008
    9 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Oh BTW I have use of a 22,000 dollar Infrared camera and have had training on how to use it. Accurately shows heat loss or gain and I see no difference in the two apartment units with it.

  • Matt2235
    8 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Has anyone ever used the Insuladd insulating paint additive brand of paint additive?

  • roncr
    7 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    I just painted a shipping container using white paint with Insuladd added to it. It made quite a difference. Don't know how much of a difference it would have made with the white paint alone, (it was brown before), but before painting it it was like an oven inside when the sun was out. When the sun is out now It's still a little warmer than the air outside but nothing like it was before. It think this is a pretty good test because the container is sealed with only two very small air vents, whereas in a house or appartment you are probably not going to get 100% coverage and there might be a great deal of air leaks.

  • jst1man69
    5 years ago

    Naysayers never change their color. Brickeyee is just that. Ignorance is bliss in our case...

  • jst1man69
    5 years ago

    NASA Ceramic Additive

    The link leads to NASA's website and the story of the Ceramic. If you understand how the ceramic works, then you understand its benefits.

  • marthawilkie
    5 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago

    Interesting discussion! Would love advice. We have a 1940s house where the 2nd floor is a converted attic; very low ceilings and crazy angles (five dormers). There is old insulation. We originally thought to take the ceiling down and replace with new insulation and drywall, but 4 contractors advised against this (expensive and not necessary). Just had an insulator in for estimates and, among normal things like caulking and blown-in where needed, he recommends radiant barrier paint on the 2nd floor ceiling. I'm not convinced it's the magic bullet he claims, but since we have to repaint the ceiling anyway, it could help a bit, right? Or is it nonsense as claimed here? Here's the company:

  • jst1man69
    5 years ago

    marthawilkie To be honest Thermal Ceramic should be used outside. It is great outside because of the sun and heat. The effect on heat is impressive, though the effect on cold not so much. If you want to keep the heat in then it would work wonders. If you insulate the floors with regular insulator that should be fine. Sounds like he's just trying to over self you, unless something was left out. Sealing all the cracks and opening should make a serious difference. As for the attic Hmm... New Insulation can have a major effect specially if you spend a lot of time there otherwise, not really worth the effort. The alternative is to put up some foam insulation on the wall inside 1 or 2 inch DIY. Thermal Ceramic is good for heat reflection and retaining heat, but cold hardly any. Hope that helps.

  • hollis2008
    5 years ago


    I'm afraid I'm still in the camp of this stuff not working very well. And maybe not at all.

    See my prior post on this. Believe me,.. I really, really, really wanted this stuff to work. I must've tried five or six different companies that Hawk. the stuff. Think about it,.. if it did work nearly as well as they said it did ,the Department of Energy and a whole lot of other state departments for conservation would be singing its praises telling people to use it.

    Someone not 10 miles from here did their interior and the ceilings of his whole house with several layers of the stuff. He thought he would get away with not doing conventional insulation and it performed so badly he had to tear up walls and ceilings to eventually add regular insulation. Looking at the data it didn't look like it worked any better than a house that had absolutely NO insulation.

    Notice my little experiments in my old post. This stuff is been around long enough to prove itself and yet it's only popular to those that are hopeful.

    Now I will grant you that if you use it say,... on the outside of your house it might have some effect if and only if it's a very bright color. However I have seen some studies that say that it's the very bright color that reflects the heat rather than the ceramic beads.

    The people who sing its praises here in the past,.. I really wonder if they have a dog in the fight. I would listen to my contractors. A really important thing to use I believe is a blower door as so many houses have much more leakage than you might think

    . We have tried to tighten up older houses and despite heroics, we seldom get them as tight as the EPA says we should . They want you to have a complete air exchange every two hours. Many houses have an air exchange every half an hour. In some houses this is equivalent to having a 3 x 3 window open at all times in excess of what you need for proper ventilation in the house. If you don't think that counts,.. just try opening up a window that size and try to keep your house warm.

    A blower door works even better if you combine it with someone who knows what they're doing and coupling it with a infrared thermal camera to show air pets coming in to your house. The blower door also will give you a read out to just how leaky or not leaky your house is. The better energy auditor companies will do both. I think it's really worth it as once you seal them you probably won't have to do that again for very long time or ever.

    We do both to all our rental units and are tenants always say that they appreciate the low energy bills and in many cases say they've never been in a unit that didn't have a lot of drafts. Go to YouTube and look up both blower door examples and infrared camera examples, and you should be able to find some links that show both being use together.

  • Faron79
    5 years ago

    Geez...this thread is 9 years old.

    Other than this thread, I never hear ANYthing about this stuff. If it REALLY worked, for a reasonable price, it would be ALL OVER THE'd think....;-)


  • jst1man69
    5 years ago

    The thing about Thermal Ceramic is that the Power and Gas companies wouldn't like it cutting into profit. Sure like one person said, this thread is 9 years old and back then it was still questionable about how it would work. Now we know it can be a thermal spacer to keep keep in heat with insulation in the walls and on the outside on hot days it reflects the light away. I hear the guy that was a exec of some kind in the company, put this only on his walls without insulation. Well surprise when he had hot and cold spots EVERYWHERE. So it is how you use it that makes a difference.

    The product works, but use wisdom. I live in an area that can reach 100+ so this stuff work great.

  • Randy
    5 years ago

    One of the smartest things ever written is "The product works, but use wisdom".
    The problem that arises is when people talk with zero experience of a product, or have used it incorrectly, or have done "tests" that are completely illogical and not properly thought out.

    Anyone who uses ceramics in place of standard insulation is the highest level of fool. Responsible ceramic coating companies would never suggest such a thing. They will tell you , for example, that ceramics can and will help insulation or building materials work more efficiently. Energy conservation is more often than not built on multiple approaches as opposed to just one single do-it-all method.

    Ceramics can be used in both hot and cold climates. In hot climates they reflect heat away from the outside and minimize the amount of heat the building materials absorb. If used inside they also minimize the amount of cold air wasted to cool building materials (walls and ceilings). In cold climates, when used inside, they reflect heat back into the room and minimize the heat being wasted to warm building materials (walls and ceilings). In the winter you want your room warm. You aren't really concerned with how warm the air cavity inside the wall is. Keeping the heat inside the room prevents it from heating up the wall materials and transferring into the wall cavity.

    As mentioned far above, and many years ago, I've used every single product on the market. Tested in dozens of ways, used on my own home, used on customer's homes. The only thing I've found to work extremely well (some others had some effect but not as much) are the products from Hy-Tech Thermal Solutions. My go-to guy there is Ted, and there's yet to be a question or situation that he can't help with (they have others, he's just the one I've dealt with for years). This is what happens when you deal with people who truly know their stuff....and not people who just think they understand or make things up.

    Ceramics, if used properly, can and truly have made huge differences in energy consumption and comfort. The science is there, and the history in use is there.

  • bean1860
    4 years ago

    Wow! I'm still a little confused on the issue of using ceramic additives to paint. I recently heard of this method and wanted to use one of the products.

    I live in Illinois, about sixty mile west of Chicago and our winter temp. differs about ten to fifteen degrees lower.

    I just had my home tested by my energy company with the door blower test and fall within range of acceptability. But there are a few bad spots that need to be addressed; one is the attic hatch way and the other is the ceilings along the exterior walls ( I actually tested better than expected). The FLIR gun shows several areas of large cold spots.

    I've read all of the comments and have decided to try to paint with one of the products. Maybe the only constructive thing I can say, is that I've read people are adding it to primers. Somewhere in my research I read or heard that the ceramic additives are not to be added to primers; or am I mistaken.

  • bean1860
    4 years ago

    I know that I am at least one year late for this forumm but I just received an email from one of the manufacturers of ceramic insulating additives

    Insuladd Environmental Products) (214)

    This was the first product I ran into and found out that there is an Insuladd sold on Amazon. I was confused because of the two products having the same name and references. For those of you that are still researching, Mr. Pyle states that he have about 20 independent tests that I can send to you if you are interested.

  • Pyewacket
    4 years ago
    last modified: 4 years ago

    Of course he does. Every snake oil salesman has hundreds of testimonials as to how great their snake oil works.

  • HU-554418645
    4 months ago

    What about the Bob Vila video where he had a torch held to a thin strip of metal covered with Supertherm a ceramic treated paint and put a torch to it? He apparently held the piece in his hand shortly after the heat was applied. It appeared to be genuine.