If modern houses and flats are built using the correct materials, they should be insulated against normal noise nuisance from neighbours. However, loud noise produced from stereo systems etc. will always be heard and is more of a nuisance at night when other daytime background noises have ceased. The intensity of loud noise, although cannot be eliminated, can be reduced to a more acceptable level by using our Acousticel M20AD recycled rubber wall insulation. This insulation is used by construction companies to upgrade party walls to comply with the current Building Regulations for noise and is ideal for upgrading poorly insulated party walls. M20AD is easy to install and can be undertaken by most competent DIY people. It is simply glued to the party wall with a further two layers of plasterboard stuck on top. Our M20AD page gives more information and application instructions.
If modern houses and flats are built using the correct materials, they should be insulated against normal noise nuisance from neighbours. However, loud noise produced from stereo systems etc. will always be heard and is more of a nuisance at night when other daytime background noises have ceased. Apart from the airborne noise nuisance already mentioned, noise from above is often caused by footfalls and furniture such as chairs being moved (impact). Both of these noise problems can be reduced by installing a separate ceiling beneath the existing (if height allows). To gain the maximum reduction in noise nuisance from above, a separate ceiling installed on new joists beneath and not connected to, the existing ceiling and supported by wall mounted joist hangers will give the best results. The joists should be infilled with a 100mm of our Acoustic Mineral Wool (AMW100) and clad with 25mm of 12.5mm thick plasterboard Soundblock. This method can only normally be installed into Victorian houses with higher than average ceilings.
More usually, good sound reduction can be achieved by screwing 50mm timber studs directly to the old ceiling being sure to fix through to the joists above. Ensure there is enough electrical flex for the new light fitting in the ceiling beneath and seal the hole through the old ceiling with mastic. Infill with 50mm of our Acoustic Mineral Wool (AMW50) before screwing our Resilient Bar system to the battens. 25mm of plasterboard Soundblock or 31.5mm of plasterboard is then screwed to the Resilient Bars. Our Resilient Bar page will give you more information.
Modern houses and flats are built using the correct materials and should be insulated against normal noise nuisance from neighbours. However, loud noise produced from stereo systems etc. will always be heard and is more of a nuisance at night when other daytime background noises have ceased.
Many people find squeaking floorboards extremely irritating and htey are best dealt with before adding any soundproofing materials to a floor. This noise is usually caused by boards rubbing against boards or the joists they are fixed to. The most common problem we find is due to poor nailing when undersized nails have been used or the nails are spaced too far apart. The best way to sort this out is to screw, rather than nail, the boards down securely.
We have also found that defective materials are another cause of this. Warped or twisted joists, bowed subfloors/wood sheathing can all cause the materials to rub against each other. Wherever floor materials move against each other squeaking will result. Sometimes all that is needed is to add some mineral oil around the squeak but this tends to wear off after time as the problem can re-occur. This however can be useful for tongue and grooved flooring that has weak or broken T&G links.
If your flat has been built with a floating floor, airborne noise from below may not be such a problem. For those of you that do not have a floating floor, there is a lot of room for improvement. Flats that have been converted from large houses nearly always have timber suspended floors. The best sound insulating results can be achieved if the floorboards are lifted to install 100mm of our Acoustic Mineral Wool (AMW100) between the joists. The flooring is then replaced and screwed to the joists so as not to squeak when walked on before a floating floor can be installed. Insulation between the joists and a floating floor is now required by Building Control for all new build and conversion projects for flats. Our floating floor insulation is used by contractors to meet the regulations and so is the best option to achieve good separating floor sound insulation. Acousticel R10 is loose laid over the base floor and a new t&g floor is placed on top. For best results, our Quietboard can be used which is also used for new build separating floors. This floating floor system also works well on concrete floors where a floating floor has not previously been installed.
Our Acousticel R10 and Quietboard pages give more information including application instructions.
Installation of a floating floor will entail an increase in floor height of approx. 29mm so all doors will have to be adjusted accordingly.
Square edged floorboards are notorious for allowing sound leakage through their joints. This can now be easily addressed by installing two layers of our SBM5 Sound Barrier Mat with the second layer overlapping the joints of the first. No fixing is required. The mats are heavy enough to lie flat without the aid of any mechanical fixings. SBM5 is often used beneath both our Acousticel R10 floating floor insulation and Acoustic Underlays described below.
If it is impractical to fit a floating floor, another option is to swop any existing carpet underlay for one of our Acoustic Underlays. Our Acousticel A10 underlay is designed to reduce impact noise which will benefit the neighbours but will do little to reduce airborne noise nuisance. To reduce airborne noise, an acoustic underlay incorporating sound barrier materials such as our Quietfloor should be used. At only 12mm thick, this insulation is effective at reducing airborne noise in both directions therefore, benefitting yourself and the neighbours below.