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Author Topic: Installing acrylic outside the frame of an interior window, or inside?  (Read 5962 times)

jds

  • Guest

I am installing acrylic over the inside of my bedroom windows to cut down outside noise and was wondering what the best method would be. 

I could use up to 1/4" or 3/8" on the inside of the frame with caulk or magnetic tape and L bracket rails, or any thickness outside the frame with either the same method or rest the acrylic on the bottom of the sill and caulk the rest (also caulking the sill). 

My thoughts are to install them on the outside of the frame since no critical measurements would be necessary, not to mention squareness of the frame.  Is the inside the frame method any better?

Also, I work for an acrylic fabricator so I can get any thickness of material.  Is 3/8" adequate for a good deal of noise reduction?  Would using 1/2" or 3/4" greatly increase noise reduction or just give me a little more.  I worry about the weight of material that thick on 38" X 50.5" windows.

Thanks for any help!

PS - this is my first visit and first post...I am very glad I found this informative forum!

johnbergstromslc

  • Guest
Re: Installing acrylic outside the frame of an interior window, or inside?
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2007, 07:19:24 PM »

Sounds like you have a good handle on the situation.  Use as thick as acrylic as possible, and make sure it's sealed up good.  Try to get your hands on some silica gel (the same as in the 'do not eat' packets you find in clothing and shoe boxes) and put it in the window cavity.  As the temperature gets colder, the silica gel will absorb moisture and cut down or even eliminate the condensation between panes.

bjnash

  • Guest
Re: Installing acrylic outside the frame of an interior window, or inside?
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2008, 03:45:47 AM »

Sounds like you have a good handle on the situation.  Use as thick as acrylic as possible, and make sure it's sealed up good.  Try to get your hands on some silica gel (the same as in the 'do not eat' packets you find in clothing and shoe boxes) and put it in the window cavity.  As the temperature gets colder, the silica gel will absorb moisture and cut down or even eliminate the condensation between panes.

We have found in our testing that any thickness over 3/8" have minimal improvement.  See
http://www.soundproofing.org/options_sound_control_for_windows.htm
for your options.

BJ

johnbergstromslc

  • Guest
Re: Installing acrylic outside the frame of an interior window, or inside?
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2008, 08:53:47 PM »

I think I need to slow down while I'm reading the original post so I don't give an ambiguous answer.

I take it back, don't use as thick as possible.  1/2" is do-able, but 3/4" is too much.

3/4" vs. 3/8" would certainly yield a lot more than 'minimal improvement', especially in the lower frequencies but it's impractical as hell.  The weight and cost would be ridiculous and visitors to your house would probably get freaked out.  They'd think you're bulletproofing your house for some kind of shoot out.  It would look weird.

I have no concrete numbers for you, but 3/8" probably offers almost as good as performance as 1/2".  Go with as thick as you can afford, that's what I should probably say.  Since you work for a plastic company, I'm not sure what that is.

Before you do anything, you might want to invest in a good sound level meter.  A 35 dB ambient noise level is a pretty quiet room.  Shoot for that and don't go too overboard. 

joel

  • Guest

Many people have gotten good results installing a cheap storm window on the outside and an acrylic or laminated glass panel on the interior.  This gives you two dead air spaces instead of one.