Author Topic: Wood floors in second-floor condo  (Read 11676 times)

Berry Bolger

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Wood floors in second-floor condo
« on: July 08, 2003, 11:56:41 PM »
I live in a second-floor condo. The CC&R's state that all rooms except the kitchen, entry and baths in second-level units must be carpeted. Obviously this is to control noise to the unit below. I would like to install hardwood floors in the living/dining area and hallway. I was told that floating a wood floor gave as good or better sound control than carpet. Does anyone know anything about this?


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Re: Wood floors in second-floor condo
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2003, 07:41:47 PM »
I don't know the answer but as someone who lives below people with cheap, thin carpets over squeaky plywood I can bet your downstairs neighbors will be very unhappy if you put down anything but thick carpeting. Would you be prepared to rip up the floors if they complained to the condo association?

Mark Wilder

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Re: Wood floors in second-floor condo
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2003, 07:12:34 PM »
If you want to improve the sound isolation of your floor from footfalls, you have to add mass. All the acoustic pad is going to do is dampen some of the high frequency "clicking" on the harder wood surface.

Mass is added by pouring a cementitious layer (e.g. gypcrete) over the subfloor. It takes at least an inch of this to make a difference.

Then you could "float" your floor on a resilient pad. That would give you the best sound isolation from below.

I'm working on a renovation and am facing alot of these issues. A great resource is the Canadian Industrial Research Council (IRC).

Good luck!


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Re: Wood floors in second-floor condo
« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2003, 09:13:31 PM »
Barry and Patsy,

The floated floor concept will work if the sub floor is completely isolated (detached) from the new floated floor, however, I have to agree with  Patsy, that installing a wood floor in a second story unit should be a against the law. It is absolute Hell for the downstairs occupants. You'll never understand until you live beneath a person who has hardwood floors in their upper unit.
 Granted it could hurt  business a bit, but I know what it is like to live beneath an apartment or condo dweller who has hardwood floors. It is not fun!
 Mark's suggestion about the gypcrete is a good one, although I feel that the thickness would need to be at least 3"  to 4 " thick to be at all effective.
Barry, please think long and hard about the wood floors in your condo, and ask yourself why your condo association and the CC&R's do not allow hardwood , ceramic tile, or linoleum floors in areas other than  kitchens and bathrooms?
I deal with this on a daily basis, and there are no easy answers.  All I can say is that quiet neighbors make happy neighbors. I rest my case Your Honor!

Bob Orther
Super Soundproofing Sales/Technical Associate.
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