- Types of noise and solutions
- Features of soundproofing apartments in houses of various types
- Noise insulation materials
- Ceiling soundproofing
- Acoustic suspended ceiling
- Vibration suppression suspended ceiling
- Noise insulation of walls
- Plasterboard buildings
- Decorative noise insulation panels
- Roll sound insulation of walls
- Elimination of construction defects
- Electrical outlets and boxes
- Pipe risers
- Joints between ceiling and walls
At home, even quiet sounds from neighbors or from the street do not allow you to relax and make you look for ways to protect yourself from noise. We offer recommendations for soundproofing walls and ceilings of a residential apartment, which can be applied in practice independently.
Types of noise and solutions
There are two groups of noises – internal and external. Internal noises are created by technical equipment located in the house, as well as sounds associated with the life of residents. 70 percent of them spread through floor slabs.
Sources of external noise are located outside the building – these are transport, work of enterprises, noise from public places.
By the method of formation, internal noises are classified as shock and air.
Mechanical effect on the floor creates impact noises, for example, when moving furniture or during repair work.
Airborne noise is transmitted from the source to the ceiling through the air, for example, from a loudly switched player.
Often, noise is transmitted through the ceiling to the walls and is carried throughout the building, this method of sound transmission is called indirect..
The problem is solved by full or partial revision of all walls and ceilings of the apartment.
Complete soundproofing involves the completion of the ceiling, walls by various methods, but requires a full-scale renovation of the apartment and significant costs.
Sometimes the problem can be solved by partial sound insulation, for example, by eliminating construction defects at the joints of walls with floor slabs or in the locations of wiring accessories. It is also possible to soundproof only the floor or one of the walls..
Features of soundproofing apartments in houses of various types
It is impossible to single out the type of house whose sound insulation is better than others, everyone has a common problem – poor sound insulation of floors.
The peculiarity of panel houses is that the massiveness of floors and walls is the same, so the indirect transmission of sounds is very high. Sound in panel houses is transmitted from the upper floors down the walls, and the sound insulation of floor slabs is ineffective. In panel houses, it is recommended to carry out complete soundproofing of rooms, including the floor.
In brick houses, walls are thicker than floor slabs, and sound is damped in more massive structures. To reduce the noise level, it is often sufficient to modify only the ceiling.
In monolithic-frame houses, the overlap is more massive than room partitions, and the outer walls are often made of lightweight material. As a result, noise from floor slabs is transmitted to the apartment through partitions and load-bearing walls. In houses of this type, noise control begins at the construction stage. Partitions are not built up to the ceiling, but a gap of 10–20 mm is left, which is subsequently filled with sound-absorbing material. They are protected from noisy neighbors from the side by partitions built using frame technology using sound-insulating guide profiles. It is recommended to reduce noise from above by using a suspended soundproof ceiling..
Noise insulation materials
Noise protection materials are divided into two groups:
- Soundproof – to protect the noise coming from outside the house. Material properties are enhanced with increasing thickness. Usually used in special designs.
- Sound absorbing – prevent the spread of noise outside the room. They have a fibrous or cellular structure to absorb sound. Used to prevent sound (e.g. music) from spreading outside the room.
The noise level will drop sharply if you first fix the sound-absorbing material to the wall, and then – the noise-insulating material.
To isolate apartments, the following insulators are most often bought:
Mineral wool – absorbs more than 90 percent of all types of noise. Sold in rolls or slabs. The disadvantages include the loss of their abilities after getting wet..
Cork is a natural sound-insulating board material. Delays shock noises well. The downside is the high cost.
ISOPLAAT – sound insulation boards made of coniferous fibers to reduce all kinds of noise. Thickness – 10–25 mm, slab dimensions 2700×1200 mm. One side is smooth, for finishing.
ISOTEX – lightweight flexible coniferous fiber boards for airborne and impact sound protection. Easy to install, align walls.
ZIPS – panels made of gypsum fiber and mineral wool with a thickness of 40 to 130 mm. They also buy it because of the possibility of using it instead of finishing the walls.
An insulating material for use in apartments is chosen with a dense structure, about 60 kg / m3.
For sound insulation, it is not recommended to use polystyrene, polyurethane foam, polyethylene foam. These materials protect the room well from impact noise, but they cannot reduce the airborne noise level..
For noise insulation of ceilings, it is recommended to assemble an acoustic suspended ceiling or a suspended ceiling on vibration suppression hangers.
Acoustic suspended ceiling
The design is efficient thanks to the use of special soundproofing plates that absorb sounds. This method can be used if the ceiling height is within 3 m, because the thickness of the structure is 120–170 mm. The procedure for installing the system:
- Soundproof suspensions are fixed to the ceiling according to a previously developed scheme, to which the elements of the suspended ceiling will be connected. For fastening, use anchors or dowel screws and vibration isolation fasteners.
- Soundproof guiding profiles are attached to the suspensions. Rail length – 10 mm less than room size.
- The space between the guides is filled with sound-absorbing plates.
- Completion of work – fastening drywall sheets to profiles.
Vibration suppression suspended ceiling
The construction uses construction suspensions for a suspended ceiling with built-in vibration damping blocks. The product prevents the propagation of impact noise from the ceiling to the metal profile of the suspended ceiling. Vibration suppressing ceilings occupy 170-190 mm in height, so they are installed if the distance from the floor to the ceiling is from 3 m.
Construction installation procedure:
- Vibration suspensions are attached to the ceiling according to the instructions.
- Metal profiles are fixed to vibro suspensions.
- Fill the space between the profiles with mineral wool to increase sound insulation.
- Special soundproof panels are attached to the profile.
- First, a thin sheet, for example, Wolf Vlies, is fixed to the panels, and then drywall. There is a small gap between them, which increases noise isolation.
Noise insulation of walls
A frame from a profile is attached to the wall, stepping back a couple of centimeters from the surface. Sound insulating elements made of rubber or cork are placed in the gap.
The frame is filled with soundproof mats.
The last stage is fastening drywall to the profile.
The main disadvantage of the method is that each design reduces the size of the room to 10 cm.
Decorative noise insulation panels
The soundproofing properties of the finished panels are similar to those of drywall products. These are lightweight products, their weight does not exceed 4 kg. During installation, they are fixed to a flat surface. If necessary, a crate is made on the wall and the slats are set in one plane. The panels are fastened to the crate with liquid nails, and are connected to each other using the “thorn in the groove” method. After installation, no wall decoration is required – the surface looks very beautiful thanks to the fabric or paper finish. In this way, it is recommended to insulate the apartment completely, and not one wall..
Roll sound insulation of walls
The roll insulator is fixed to the surface with wallpaper glue. The noise level after work is reduced by only 60 percent. This method is used, for example, while living in a rented apartment..
Elimination of construction defects
You can reduce noise from neighbors if you follow simple recommendations for eliminating builders’ flaws.
Electrical outlets and boxes
In apartment buildings, for the installation of electrical accessories, through holes are sometimes punched in the walls. The result is a channel between neighboring apartments through which noise enters the room.
The problem is solved as follows:
- Dismantle the electrical outlet and back box.
- Measure the hole diameter and cut to size the rock wool, asbestos or basalt board spacer.
- Install the gasket in the opening until it stops, seal with putty. It is forbidden to use polyurethane foam for this purpose due to its high flammability.
- Install the socket.
In a similar way, holes for mounting (junction) electrical boxes are closed. They are closed with plastic lids and are located under the wallpaper, they can be found by knocking on the places of their intended installation..
For the passage of heating and water pipes through the ceilings, vibration-insulating pipe sections are used. Their diameter is larger than the diameter of the pipes, so a gap remains between them, which must be filled with sound-absorbing materials and sealed from the outside with putty. To check the quality of installation work, remove the top cement layer and inspect the sleeve. If there are voids between the sleeve and the pipe, clean the gap of debris as deep as possible. Wrap the pipe with soundproofing material and grout the joint. Cover the outside of the joint with silicone sealant.
Joints between ceiling and walls
If the house is old, cracks may appear between the floor panels and the walls. They are not visible under the wallpaper and do not spoil the interior of the room, but they let the sounds pass. Cracks must be filled with putty as much as possible or smeared with acrylic sealant on top.
It is impossible to provide 100% noise isolation, but it is not necessary. Enough to reduce noise to at least a non-irritating level.