One of the problems of high-quality sound insulation of an apartment is the need to sacrifice space for arranging a sufficiently thick layer of noise-absorbing materials. As an alternative, you can offer composite boards, the effectiveness of which will be described in detail today.
Problems of apartment sound insulation
The cost of communal real estate is calculated by quadrature, so the loss of usable area for the installation of false walls is unacceptable. Because of this, it is believed that it is impractical to arrange full-fledged sound insulation in an apartment: in order to achieve the desired effect, you will need to build up the walls by at least 120-150 mm, which results in the loss of several square meters.
But what to do if the apartments are divided by absolutely cardboard partitions and every neighbor’s sneeze is clearly audible? Or, on the contrary, is the house not isolated from street noise in any way? In such cases, even a small layer of materials with damping properties can significantly improve the situation, especially if measures are taken in parallel to eliminate the acoustic transmission of sound..
What is ZIPS?
Soundproof panel system – a composite material consisting of a dense shell, which is covered with a layer of mineral wool on one side. This solution is called a system for the reason that, in addition to the panels themselves, the manufacturer offers special fasteners, sealing tape and sealant, as well as a proven installation technology.
ZIPS have a combined effect, creating a shell, fixed on the basis of the wall by means of elastic ties. The outer surface of the panels is suitable for most types of decorative finishes, although to improve the properties it is recommended to make a finishing cladding with plasterboard wall.
Cladding with modern composite panels makes it possible to increase the sound insulation properties of the enclosing structures by 12-14 dB, which is considered a good indicator with a thickness of only 50 mm. The panels can be used both for walls and ceilings, however, in the latter case, the installation of suspension systems is unacceptable, because the standard fasteners are not designed for additional load.
Will it work?
On the one hand, the ZIPS provides methods for blocking structural, airborne and constructional noises. The fixing of the panels is made on the basis of elastic ties: at each point of the fixture there is an elastomer lining, and the dowel itself is surrounded by a silicone sleeve. The composite structure includes three materials of different density, which expands the frequency range of absorbed vibrations.
After fixing the panel between it and the wall, an air gap with a thickness of 6–10 mm is formed, thus transmission of vibrations to the surface of the panels is possible only at the fastening points. In addition, due to the sealing system at the abutment points, the panels form a sealed circuit, which prevents the transmission of airborne noise.
But there are also problems. The first is fasteners that are not suitable for all types of supporting structures. Initially, ZIPS was developed for noise insulation in panel houses, so their fastening to concrete would be an ideal option. However, if we are talking about gas silicate walls or gypsum partitions, you will have to look for alternatives. It is possible to increase the strength properties of fasteners using chemical anchors or longer hardware without a plastic plug. But it is not known how this will affect the sound insulation properties..
Another problem is that the fixing points are predetermined by the panel design. If there are communications at the attachment point, for example, an air conditioner route or an electrical line, the panel mount will be loosened. The manufacturer allows the absence of fasteners in no more than two points, but even this is not enough.
When sheathing the walls of the ZIPS, difficulties arise with the laying of engineering communications. Where radiators and heating pipes are located, or where open wiring is made, panels cannot be used. There are problems with the installation of sockets: the insert of the installation box violates the sound insulation contour, so the only way out is surface-mounted electric points. With some effort, hidden sockets and switches can be installed, but this will require cutting out a niche in the support base, followed by filling the air cavity with vibration-damping material, for example, mineral wool.
How is installation done
The panels are not intended for leveling walls, elastic pads can only compensate for unevenness up to 2-4 mm / m2. Therefore, the wall must first be plastered. This is necessary both for aligning the main planes and for correcting the geometry of the room..
Before installation, the wall and adjacent areas of adjacent surfaces 10 cm wide must be primed. This will eliminate dust and improve adhesion around the seal contour. A damping tape is glued in two layers on the floor, adjacent walls and ceiling. It is glued to a special vibration-damping silicone, which is applied only in the area where the panel is adjacent to adjacent surfaces, so that the remnants of the composition do not impede the application of other finishing materials.
ZIPS installation is carried out sequentially, starting from one of the lower corners. From the first panel, it is necessary to cut off the protruding edges, due to which an overlap of the outer layer of the cladding is ensured. You also need to take into account the curvature of the adjacent wall so that when fastened, the panel becomes strictly vertical and tightly adjoins the sealing contour.
Attaching the panel to the wall, punch holes in the fastening points with a punch. After that, the panel must be moved aside, the plastic plugs must be inserted, then the sound insulation must be put back in place and the screws must be tightened. Be sure to check that all caps are recessed relative to the plane of the plate by 1–2 mm.
After installing the first plate, the vertical row should be completed. For this, the side protruding edge of the overlap is cut from the panels. For the manufacture of the top end, the panel is cut in two, the rest is used at the beginning of the next vertical row.
Before installing each next panel on the plane of the vestibule, it is necessary to apply a thin string of silicone sealant with a snake to seal the abutment. After fixing the new panel, the overlap at the joint should be fastened with 25 mm black self-tapping screws with a pitch of 15 cm.All seams between the panels should be filled with silicone from a syringe tube, wipe the rest with a spatula.
When the installation of the panels on the wall is completed, you should check again that the fastening heads do not protrude above the cladding plane. After that, the wall is sheathed with 12 mm plasterboard, for which self-tapping screws 40 mm long are used, stitching the outer shell of the panels and the gypsum fiber core.
Installation of ZIPS on the ceiling is carried out in exactly the same way. The only difference lies in the inadmissibility of excluding fixing points: dowels must be screwed in in all provided places. Also, for ceiling systems, it is permissible not to carry out the finishing plating of the gypsum board, if the installation of the stretch ceiling is subsequently carried out.
Plasterboard cladding should be mentioned separately. It not only performs the function of enhancing sound insulation, but also facilitates the application of finishing materials. The fact is that, although the surface of the panels is suitable for puttying or painting, the seams do not have a special cut, which is the case with gypsum plasterboards. In addition, the putty and paint do not adhere to the silicone, from which the damper sleeves are made at the attachment points. Therefore, in order to avoid the appearance of cracks and peeling, it is recommended to finish the finishing on pre-hemmed sheets of gypsum board.