Author Topic: Soundproofing a party wall in a duplex  (Read 7622 times)


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Soundproofing a party wall in a duplex
« on: March 11, 2014, 04:57:07 AM »
We have new neighbors in our duplex who make a lot of noise. It is a family with 4 kids ages 6-16. We are looking into options for how to reduce the sound in our common walls - the master bedroom/bath upstairs and the living/dining/kitchen downstairs.

We had a contractor come out to look at it and he brought a friend from a local insulation company. It turns out the insulation guy actually worked on our neighborhood (two blocks of nearly identical zero lot line homes) while they were being built. He said that in between the units is a 6" double wall construction with R-19 fiberglass insulation and 1" dead space in between. We were SHOCKED to learn this because we hear so much noise from our neighbors. TV, conversation, cabinets clanking, dog barking, foot stomps on stairs, dresser drawers, etc. EVERYTHING.

I should also mention that we have added bamboo floors to our living room and master. I was told by the insulation guy that this could be adding to the amount of noise we are hearing.

We are really hoping for a peaceful living room and a quiet place to sleep again. Here are our questions:

1. Is it possible that we can hear this kind of noise if the party wall is in fact a double wall construction? We almost don't believe the insulation guy, because we have read that this is the best kind of construction to limit noise transfer between party walls.

2. What is the best way to reduce noise given the construction of our duplex? It seems like we shouldn't be hearing the noise we are hearing, so will anything help? Keep in mind that our main complaint is the low, loud impact noises of drawers and doors slamming, feet stomping, etc. We not only HEAR the noise, but it also SHAKES our house with the impact.

3. What are our options in the bathroom? Most of the wall is open except one side of the tub. This is the source of the most noise from our neighbors and we'd really like to reduce the noise so we can sleep. Kids are up at various hours using the bathroom loudly. So, we want to do a good job of making sure all the potential holes are covered, but is it possible to do this without removing the tub?

4. Will it be worth it to do some noise reducing work in the living room if we don't do anything in the kitchen? Or, what can we do in the kitchen short of removing/replacing cabinets?

5. Do we need to do anything with the floor joists or ceiling/roof? Or will doing drywall work reduce the noise enough?

Thanks for your help!

Randy S

  • Guest
Re: Soundproofing a party wall in a duplex
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2014, 03:12:22 PM »
ok there is something missing here...if it is truly a double wall construction with a 1" air gap and insulation in both cavities (a complex structure) you should not be hearing so much noise.
That system if done right is already rated at around 60 STC!

It would be best to call me direct and lets get to the bottom of the problem.

It sound like they might have done double wall construction but did not separate the subfloor.

Let find out...before we make the wrong decision.

Randy S.
760-752-3030 ext 104