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Expanded VS Extruded Polystyrene

Views: 119     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2024-02-20      Origin: Site

The difference between expanded polystyrene and extruded polystyrene

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) and extruded polystyrene (XPS) are two common types of rigid foam insulation materials used in construction. Here's a comparison between the two:

Expanded VS Extruded Polystyrene

Manufacturing Process:

Expanded Polystyrene (EPS): EPS is manufactured through a process where polystyrene beads are expanded using steam, which results in a foam material with closed-cell structure.

Extruded Polystyrene (XPS): XPS is made by extruding polystyrene pellets through a die, followed by a process of continuous extrusion and expansion using blowing agents. This produces a denser foam material with a more uniform closed-cell structure.

Density and Strength:

EPS: Generally has a lower density and lower compressive strength compared to XPS.

XPS: Has a higher density and higher compressive strength, making it more resistant to pressure and deformation.


EPS: Has a slightly lower R-value (thermal resistance) compared to XPS, but still provides effective insulation.

XPS: Typically has a higher R-value compared to EPS, providing better thermal insulation properties.

Water Absorption:

  • EPS: Can absorb moisture if not properly protected, which may affect its insulation properties.

  • XPS: Has a more closed-cell structure, making it more resistant to water absorption and moisture infiltration.


EPS: Generally more cost-effective compared to XPS.

XPS: Typically more expensive due to its manufacturing process and higher density.


EPS: Commonly used in insulation boards, packaging, and lightweight fill material.

XPS: Often used in applications where higher compressive strength and moisture resistance are required, such as below-grade insulation, roofing insulation, and insulating concrete forms (ICFs).

In summary, both EPS and XPS are effective insulation materials with their own advantages and applications. EPS is typically more cost-effective, while XPS offers higher compressive strength and better moisture resistance. The choice between the two depends on factors such as project requirements, budget, and specific insulation needs.

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