Author Topic: Sound proofing a common wall  (Read 9536 times)

Silent Running

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Sound proofing a common wall
« on: June 04, 2009, 11:55:45 PM »
Greetings folks-

My handle is Silent Running and I am open to suggestions for a situation I have with mynext door neighbors that share a common wall with me.

Recently my neighbors have turned their apartment into their own personal night club complete with enough bass to make David Lee Roth's ears bleed. I am having building mgt talk to them but I am not very sure of the outcome.

I have decided to stage a preemptive strike and sound proof that wall. However I am unsure what options to utilize.

Here's some background on the common wall.

It is 8 feet tall and about 3-4 inches wide.
It consists of drywall and metal studs with a hollow interior.

I am looking at the following options.

Acoustical Wall Panels

Flexible Vinyl Barriers

Acoustical Wall Fabric

The last thing I would want to do is to fill the wall up with insulation in the wall or ceiling cavities and install a loaded vinyl barrier,isolation clips and one or two layers of 5/8" drywall.  This sounds like it would cost a lot of money.

Any recommendations?

Randy S

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Re: Sound proofing a common wall
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2009, 04:28:16 PM »
Silent Running,
I'll be the first to tell you,
Acoustical Wall Panels

Flexible Vinyl Barriers

Acoustical Wall Fabric 
will not work!

The quoted option below will be the solution if you want to get a quality reduction.

"The last thing I would want to do is to fill the wall up with insulation in the wall or ceiling cavities and install a loaded vinyl barrier,isolation clips and one or two layers of 5/8" drywall.  This sounds like it would cost a lot of money."

To decouple from the structure is the only option for reducing the LF (Bass)...also keep in mind you both share the same ceiling and floor system therefore once you have soundproofed the wall you will have the LF (Bass) remitting from the floor and ceiling so you most likely will end up having to address those areas as well.

Be aware you can still spend a lot of money and get no results if you dont apply the basic principles of soundproofing in this situation.
1) Decouple from the structure.
2) Add Barrier (Mass)
3) add absorbers (cotton fiber insulation or mineral wool)
and for serious LF (Bass) add a dampener like Green Glue.
Randy Sieg

Super Soundproofing Co
www.soundproofing.org
888-942-7723
Ph. 760-752-3030
Fax.760-752-3040

janu08

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Re: Sound proofing a common wall
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2009, 06:02:36 PM »
Challenge:  One common wall separates two rooms. The sound generated in both rooms carries between them. It is required to have an effective sound insulation barrier between them.

Solution: Disconnect your common wall structure and apply dB-Bloc prior to finishing off your walls for sound insulation . Call a NetWell consultant for techniques for blocking sound and applying an effective barrier to create sound proof walls.

DENSITY + DISCONNECTION = SOUND INSULATION

For blocking sound and effective sound isolation through a common wall, first understand that the noise transmitting through is actually energy. Energy vibrates through any common surface, whether it be brick, concrete, studded walls with drywall, etc. It's like talking into a coffee can that's connected by a string to someone at the other end. The string carries the vibration of your voice, and if you cut the string, you break the communication.

The same holds true for blocking sound transmitting through your common walls. The studs are actually conducting sound, so you need to split the wall apart so the studs inside the wall don't connect both sides together. Once you've done this, simply add our dB-Bloc into the wall to create sound proof walls. The density is the easy part here; disconnection requires more effort.
Creating Sound Proof Walls in a New Build Scenario

If you're in the initial building phase, you can choose from two different approaches for blocking sound. 1. You can build a double wall: Two walls standing side by side that do not connect, with dB-Bloc applied by staple gun to one or both sides. This creates sound isolation. 2. Build a single wall starting with a 6" wide floor plate. Then stagger 2x4 studs left/right/left/right so that the odd numbered studs support the drywall on Room A's side, and the even numbered studs support the drywall on Room B's side. No stud connects all the way through. Again, add the dB-Bloc to this framing structure and you'll generate a 15-20 dB drop on average. Note that every 3 dB is actually a 50% drop in pressure.
Blocking Sound in Existing Walls

In an existing wall scenario, for maximum sound isolation, you have to be more creative about blocking sound . First, can you frame a new wall as a sound barrier immediately in front of your existing wall? If so, do it, add the barrier, and finish off your new wall for a very simple way to sound proof walls. If not, you're like most of our clients and need a different solution for sound insulation.
The Next Best Technique for Creating Sound Isolation

First, staple dB-Bloc right to your existing drywall. Then secure thin firring strips or resilient channels horizontally up the wall. Then apply a second layer of drywall to the firring strips and finish off. This provides the density of the sound material, and the disconnection takes place since the only contact straight through the wall is where the horizontal firring strips overlap the vertical studs in the wall. You'll achieve 95% disconnection, blocking and isolation. You'll achieve 95% disconnection for blocking sound vibration and maximizing your sound isolation!

Other points to consider: First, stuffing the walls with insulation for the purposes of blocking sound actually does little. Why? No density; no disconnection. Second, no matter what blocking, isolation and insulation steps you take, some noise will leak through. Nothing you will do will create total isolation and blocking. Common wall scenarios also share outlet plates, vents, ductwork, pipes, windows and doors where noise escapes the sound block. On average, a standard wall has an STC rating of 38. A staggered wall/double wall with dB-Bloc boosts the STC rating above 60. Again, note that just a 3 dB drop in leakage through the sound block creates a barrier that reduces noise levels by 50%.

johnbergstromslc

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Re: Sound proofing a common wall
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2009, 10:26:56 PM »


Other points to consider: First, stuffing the walls with insulation for the purposes of blocking sound actually does little. Why? No density; no disconnection. Second, no matter what blocking, isolation and insulation steps you take, some noise will leak through. Nothing you will do will create total isolation and blocking. Common wall scenarios also share outlet plates, vents, ductwork, pipes, windows and doors where noise escapes the sound block. On average, a standard wall has an STC rating of 38. A staggered wall/double wall with dB-Bloc boosts the STC rating above 60. Again, note that just a 3 dB drop in leakage through the sound block creates a barrier that reduces noise levels by 50%.


I realize you probably just copied and pasted this article from some corporate site, but I have to take issue with the last paragraph.

'Stuffing the walls with insulation' absolutely helps reduce sound transmission.  It kills the sound bouncing around inside the wall, preventing a resonance effect between the drywall layers.  It generally adds 6 points to STC and helps attenuate low frequencies.

A 'standard wall' has an STC rating of 33, not 38.  If you add insulation, it jumps to 39...

A '3 dB drop...reduces noise levels by 50%' - Uh, no.  It actually takes a 10 dB drop to subjectively reduce noise by 50%.  A 3dB change is BARELY perceptible.