Author Topic: Basic Soundproofing For Basement Ceiling  (Read 30069 times)

Edward Dageforde

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Basic Soundproofing For Basement Ceiling
« on: May 24, 2003, 10:11:20 AM »
I have been reading information about resilient channels, and even some of the FAQs, but what I am trying to do is just something basic.  Much of the information deals with really trying to soundproof to the max, such as using a double layer of drywall with the resilient channel, when I am just looking for a basic, reasonable solution for soundproofing the ceiling.



I am in the process of finishing my basement (1000 sq. ft finished, 500 unfinished). The reason for finishing it is to give my boys (12 and 16) a place to hang-out with their friends.  It is going to have a home theater system to watch movies, plus a game room (air hockey, foosball, pool table). The reason I am considering soundproofing is to keep their loud noises and music from being too annoying above.



One friend used 4x8 sheets of sound-board to finish his basement which I was at first considering.  In visiting a friend of a friend's house, he introduced me to resilient channel, which began me on the search to learn more.



The home has 3 levels.  The basement, the main, and the bedrooms.  The basement is accessed by a door on the main level.  The stairs go down 1/2 flight where there is a landing.  Turn left on the landing and the stairs take you down the remaining way. There is not a door at the bottom.



There are some restrictions I have to deal with in soundproofing in the basement.  The basic ceiling height is 7' 8".  Underneath the heating ducts it is more like 6' 8".  I don't mind losing 1/2" height under the 7' 8" ceiling using either sound board or resilient channel, but underneath the heating ducts I consider that precious space. Also I don't want to use a double-layer of drywall.  In between the ceiling joists there are various obstacles, including wiring and vents.



Around the heating ducts there is a wood frame to hang the drywall to.  When I installed the frame I did put soundboard between the frame and the ducts. There is empty space between the 2x2s around the ducts that it might make sense to fill with something.





So now the questions.  Based on the above configuration:



- What should I do for soundproofing?

- Will it matter much if I do anything?  

- Will the use of resilient channel on the ceiling be of enough benefit over soundboard, or will they be about the same?  

- What should I do about the area underneath the heating ducts?

- Should I put anything in the area between the joists (Silent-Floor Type)? Insulation? Foam? Just leave alone?

- Should I put anything in the area between the 2x2s around the duct work?





Finally, if resilient channel is the answer for the high ceiling, I have some other questions based on my reading about it.  They are:



- Do you keep the drywall on the ceiling from touching the edges of the frame (leaving a little gap) or does it matter?

- Do you keep the drywall on the walls from touching the drywall on the ceiling or does it matter?

- So you need to fill in the gap between the drywall on the walls and ceiling (assuming there is one) with anything?

- Can you tape the joints and corners as normal?

- Anything I miss?



I guess you could say I am looking for the installation steps on the ceiling for the resilient channel (although I have read some, things are not always clear).



Looking forward to hearing back.




Bill Chapman

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Re: Basic Soundproofing For Basement Ceiling
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2003, 07:29:13 PM »
In general resilient channels do work very well assuming that what is attached below them has good sound proofing qualities.  My friend has just redone  basement similiar to your basement.  His ceiling were fairly low but he managed to isolate his room very well.  He used lead sheeting, which is an excellent soundproofing material.  Lead however can be very expensive to put up, considering that one 4' by 8' piece of lead-lined sheet rock can weigh up to 80 lbs.  It can also cost up to $200 per sheet.  A more cost effcient method that works very well (in my experience with it) would be lining the ceiling will Firestone APP 170 Smooth which is a type of roofing rubber.  A roll of 33' by 3' costs about $40.  Actually I found out how good it was when I used it in my summer home living room.  I put 2 layers of it back to back and the sound proofing properties are tremendous.  The thing with this type of roofing rubber is that it is also made up of vinyl (10% vinyl, 90% rubber) which is also very good for sound reduction.  Glue the rubber onto sheetrock and attach the ceiling In terms of connecting the walls and the ceiling, you should make sure all air pockets are closed and all cracks are sealed as  much as possible with chalking, and don't worry about making a slit between the wall and ceiling.  If you find that the resilient channel is too expensive use chalking to break up the ceiling layers.  As a matter of fact use chalking for everything you can because it breaks up frequencies well and it also makes the room air-tight (and in effect sound-tight) Fill the gaps between the beams with Certain Teed insulation or better yet Rockwool insulation (Canada).  rock wool is cheaper and more dense.  Remember to leave room between the floor.  If you have 10" high beams, than fill it with 3" insulation (30% of the height of the beam).  When you attach screws to the walls and the beams of the ceiling, make sure that you put some caulking around the screws and on the studs to eliminate any other transferable sound.  I hope I helped you. Bye.        

Edward Dageforde

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Re: Basic Soundproofing For Basement Ceiling
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2003, 08:40:47 AM »
Hello Bill,

Thanks for the reply to my posting.  Your information gave me some good things to think about.

I don't think I will use the lead sheeting due to the cost.  I have 1000 sq. ft. of finished space.  If it was one room maybe, but not the whole basement.  The cost of the resilient channel, however, is not an issue and I am so far leaning that way.  However I will have to look into the roofing rubber.  Do you know how thick it is?  

I did like your suggestion about filling the beams with some insulation (thanks for the brand suggestions, and the note to only fill 30%, something I did not know about).  I think I will do that.  

I also like the suggestion to caulk everything, but would like a clarification. Are you suggesting that where the drywall comes together put caulk in the gap before tapping?

Once again, thanks for your help.

Daniel Szalay

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Re: Basic Soundproofing For Basement Ceiling
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2003, 08:20:55 AM »
I'm doing something similer and your info was great. One question; I'm planning on putting rockwool insulation between the upper floor joists. Which side does the air gap face; the lower studio side or upper floor side ?

Thanks

Dan

Daniel Szalay

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Re: Basic Soundproofing For Basement Ceiling
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2003, 09:41:11 AM »
top   ;D

Boborther

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Re: Basic Soundproofing For Basement Ceiling
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2003, 01:49:57 PM »
Bill, Ed, and Daniel,

A great way to soundproof the ceiling with or without the use of resilient channels (RC-1) is to staple up a material called mass loaded vinyl (MLV). I feel this is a much better material to use than the Firestone APP 170. Now granted it is a little more costly, but is is a 100% vinyl material impregnated with barium salts and silicas, which give it the same properties (soundproofing wise) as lead sheeting.
Bill was right about the cost of lead lined drywall, however, you can always purchase the lead foil (sheeting) and glue it with industrial adhesive or contact cement directly to the back of the drywall, and you have virtually the same thing at less than half the price. The vinyl is as good a soundproofer as the lead, though the lead is a little bit better at blocking low frequency noises, (bass sounds etc.)
If you don't have the room to float using the resilient channels, because the duct work is too far beneath the floor joists, you could always use the (MLV) stapled to the joists and  seam taped at the seams, and then simply drywall over the (MLV) with a layer of 5/8" fire code rock. If the main concern is keeping the sound down stairs, then this is the ticket. Please feel free to give me a call if you need further information. Thanks Gents.


Bob Orther
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