Note: Installation instructions and illustrated drawings are recommendations only, while proper local construction methods are the responsibility of the installer.
Reflectix® RAP (Bubble) is an alternative to conventional sheet metal and corrugated aluminum panels for return air ducts. In wood frame construction, it may be used to enclose the bottom of return air plenums, between the joist spaces, stud cavities, and wall and ceiling cavities.
The Reflectix® RAP (Bubble) consists of one outer layer of highly reflective film (96% reflectivity) and one outer layer of white polyethylene. Two inner layers of insulating bubbles resist conductive heat flow while a center layer of polyethylene provides our product with high reliability and strength (nominal thickness 5/16″). The product has a tape running the length of the roll for easy identification by code officials. The tape identifies the manufacturer and ASTM testing: Reflectix® Return Air Panning • ASTM E84 • Class A / Class 1 • ASTM C411 Passed
- Reduces noise through plenum
- No shop fabrication required
- Class 1 / Class A Fire Rated
- 30 to 40% less costly than sheet metal and corrugated aluminum panels
- Staple to floor joists and stud cavities
- Easy to install
- Saves labor cost of installation
- Lightweight and clean
- Non-toxic / non-carcinogenic
- Resists growth of fungi, mold and mildew
- Not affected by moisture or humidity
Part Numbers and Sizes
- HVRDBW1602503 – 16″ x 25′
- HVRDBW2402502 – 24″ x 25′
- HVRDBW3202501 – 32″ x 25′
- Temperature Range: -60 to 180 F
- Nominal Thickness: 5/16 inch (.312)
- Weight: 0.771 oz./sq. ft.
- Flame Spread Index (ASTM E 84): Less than 25
- Smoke Developed Index (ASTM E 84): Less than 50
- Fire Rating: Class A/Class 1
- Linear Shrinkage: None
- Reflectance (IR): 96%
- Water Vapor Transmission (ASTM E 96): 0.02
- Puncture Resistance: 60 lb./in.
- Mold and Mildew: No Growth
- Emittance: 0.04
- Tensile Strength: 3.7 N/mm
- Pliability: No Cracking
- Hot Surface Performance: Passed (250 F)
- Note: Not for use in direct contact on surface temperatures that are 180 F or greater.
Important Information for this Duct Panning Application:
1. In the 2018 International Mechanical Code Commentary – Section 602.3; sheet metal has traditionally been used for both stud cavity and joist space plenums. Code does not specify types of materials allowed for panning the bottom of open joists to create joist plenums. Traditionally, sheet metal has been used, however, composite materials have and are used. 2. Check local codes before installation for compliance in your area. 3. Installation instructions and illustrated drawings are recommendations only, while proper local construction methods are the responsibility of the installer.
Testing and Certification
- Thermal Performance ASTM C518
- Hot Surface Performance ASTM C411
- Heat Transfer (Heat Flow Up, Down, Horizontal) ASTM C1363
- Flame Spread and Smoke Density ASTM E84
- Mounting Method ASTM E2599
- Fungus Resistance Mil-Std 810B Method 508
- Pliability Test ASTM C1224
- Water Vapor Transmission ASTM E96
- Tensile Strength ASTM D751
- Emittance Testing ASTM C1371
- Thermal Performance of Water Heater Jackets
- Intertek: Surface Burning Characteristics of Building Materials ASTM E84 (Taped Joint Detail) Test Report # 3166908SAT-012
- Intertek: Surface Burning Characteristics of Building Materials ASTM E84 (Unslit) Test Report # 3166908SAT-011
- R&D Services: Resistance to the Growth of Fungi ASTM C1338 Test Report # RD072713FR
- State of California
- State of California Licensed Insulation Manufacturer
- State of Minnesota: Filed with Minnesota Insulation Standards Program
- State of Wisconsin: Wisconsin Material Approval, Safety and Buildings Division Approval # 920088-1
- R&D Services Emittance Testing
- R&D Services: Physical Properties Sheet Width, Length, Pliability, Water Vapor Permanence and Aged Water Vapor Permanence
- R&D Services: Water Vapor Transmission Test ASTM E96 (Dessicant Method)
- Always install the product with the reflective side facing out. This allows code officials easy access to code information on the product.
- Staple Reflectix® RAP (Bubble) between the floor joist, or to the side of the floor joist. Open web trusses are acceptable.
- Start at the end of the house and staple Reflectix® RAP (Bubble) to the sub-floor just behind the return air grate.
- Staple Reflectix® RAP (Bubble) to the bottom of the floor joist every 2″ to 3″. Additional approved attachment methods include: steel staples, sheet metal screws and roofing nails.
- Seal the seams with a UL 181 approved tape.
Sheet Metal has traditionally been used for both stud cavity and joist space plenums. However, code does not specify types of materials allowed for panning. Check your local codes before installation for compliance in your area.
Review These Important Safety Guidelines Prior to Installation:
- ALWAYS check local building codes before installing Reflectix®.
- ALWAYS check the area you are insulating and make any needed repairs. Any worn wiring should be replaced before you begin installing Reflectix®.
- ALWAYS make sure work areas are well ventilated and well lighted.
- ALWAYS use eye protection when operating a staple gun.
- ALWAYS use caution and common sense when using a staple gun. Be aware of electrical wiring locations. Stapling into a wire can cause severe shock or death. NEVER staple into electrical wiring.
- ALWAYS be careful when working with large pieces of Reflectix® on windy days.
- When installing Reflectix® on bright sunny days, it is best to wear sun glasses.
- Do not work in areas such as attics when temperatures are too hot.
- Please Note: The intention of these Installation Instructions and 3-D renderings are for the sole purpose of illustrating the correct location and relative position of the Reflectix® products in specific building assemblies. The correct construction methods and techniques are the responsibility of the installer or contractor. The methods outlined are recommendations on location of the Reflectix® products as a guideline. There are no claims on the part of Reflectix, Inc. that these building assemblies are finite standards or meet building code requirements (as they can vary by region).
Pictured: Reflectix® RAP (Bubble) Return Air Duct Panning