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Showing posts from March, 2009

my own QuietRock story...plus someone else's

A QuietRock story....

At the end of this post, I'm going to link yet another YouTube video. It's a TV story about some people who tried using QuietRock to replace some of the original walls in their townhome, which was shockingly un-soundproofed, and they were featured on a home-improvement show -- so it's a bit slicker than my own photos.

First, here's my own story:

I live in a building that was built in the 1950s, and the contractors used the thinnest, cheapest materials with no real soundproofing whatsoever. For example, the building had no insulation in the walls or ceiling, the walls are built of 2x4 studs with a single sheet of 1/2" gypsum nailed on each side, and the floors are merely thin planks of hardwood nailed directly on top of a plywood sheet, which is nailed right on top of the wooden joists. In brief, it seems that I had moved into a wooden tent.

As a consequence--if you don't add any kind of soundproofing, noise travels easily from apartment…

soundproofing promo from the U.K.

This U.K. promotional video for a soundproofing company shows samples of some of their soundproofing products, which are similar to those in the USA. They also talk about some of their methodologies, though not in detail. But just looking at the products might give you some ideas. Note the example of the sheds near the end. It would have been nice to know what they used in the 60% soundproofed shed (it looked like mass-loaded vinyl and a Homasote-like product), as well as the 100% !!


"Soundproofing" that doesn't work

If you've read a lot of materials online already about what products to use in your own home – and horror stories about things that go wrong – then you probably already know some of the "solutions" that aren't effective. But I'll list a few of them here anyway. And while you're at it, here's an article on costly soundproofing mistakes that you might want to read, too.

What DOESN'T prevent outside noise from coming into your home (especially an apartment):

1) Carpets and rugsas the only solution. This adds some sound absorption in your own home (for example, it reduces the "echo" effect in a room) and absorbs some impact from shoes, feet, and furniture. I'm not saying you shouldn't use carpets: you should, especially as a consideration to your upstairs or downstairs neighbors. But carpeting alone will not undo some of the sound transmission in the framing of your home. Here's a quick overview from The Soundproofing Company…

One way to soundproof a ceiling

This video (from Quiet Solutions) shows one way to soundproof a ceiling. This involves removing the drywall that's already on the ceiling in a downstairs room and replacing it with soundboard, a resilient channel (to keep the new drywall from touching the ceiling joists), and a layer of soundproof QuietRock drywall.

I can't vouch for the soundboard he recommends in the video, especially because he mentions that there's wood in it (and wood is typically a sound transmitter), and I wonder if a layer of Homasote 440 would be more effective, but you get the idea: fill the hollow areas with insulation, separate the joists from the ceiling below, and use a sound absorbing material on the joists themselves.

My downstairs neighbor had something done on his ceiling below mine, but it was slightly more complicated in terms of labor, and a lot more expensive than this solution. Take a look....it shows you the basic concepts of how to keep sound from going upwards. Of course, you'd…

How to apply green glue to drywall

This video shows how to add a second layer of normal drywall to existing drywall using Green Glue. However, most people recommend that you use two tubes of Green Glue per 4x8 sheet of drywall, and the guy in this video used only one tube. So ...use two tubes and really slather it up!

Informative Green Glue soundproofing demonstration

This video demonstrates how effectively Green Glue dampens sound between two glued ceramic tiles. It's a much better demo than the one I made, and really shows you how a few tubes of this simple dampening glue, placed between two hard surfaces, prevents a lot of vibration and noise from passing through.

You really don't have to hire a construction crew to solve a lot of these problems anymore. These innovative products really do work. If you're not good with drywall, just hire someone who knows how to work with sheetrock -- but you might not need to tear off your existing wall.

Several people have asked me lately how to add soundproofing to their apartment on a small budget. Gluing another piece of sheetrock onto their existing wall might do it -- but you must use Green Glue (not any kind of glue)!

Sound comparison: standard drywall, QuietRock, Green Glue

REPOSTED FROM MY PREVIOUS BLOG:

By knocking on a wall, it gives you some idea of how well dampened it is for certain types of noise...or not.

I made a little video demonstration in my own home to compare the audible differences between making an impact noise on normal, uninsulated gypsum drywall and two alternatives. The first example shows how it sounds to knock on a hollow piece of 1/2" gypsum board -- typical for mid-century American homes. Then compare it to:

1) a second layer of sheetrock glued on top of the original drywall with Green Glue inbetween the two layers-- no demo required

2) a layer of QuietRock 525 that replaced the existing layer of gypsum -- demo required. Original 1/2" drywall was removed and fiberglass insulation was added before screwing the new QuietRock into the wall studs. One layer only.

Notice how "dead" the Green Glue wall and the QuietRock sound, compared to the original drywall!

Notes on Noise (repost)

REPOSTED -- AND UPDATED -- FROM MY PREVIOUS BLOG:
I live in a fairly dense urban area. So it's more common than not to have shared walls, ceilings, and floors with your neighbors. But most of the old construction in my city is made from wood: wood framing, hardwood floors, and hollow walls--and everything is nailed on top of the joists or directly onto the studs. The result? All your neighbor has to do is walk back and forth, talk, or open and close doors and drawers, and it ricochets through the building into your apartment.

So, I've spent a lot of time trying to find affordable ways to alleviate the noise. This is easier to do if you have a lot of money, or if your neighbors are amenable...and I had little money and my neighbors were not. I'm going to share some resources and some things I've learned about the products on the market today that can help alleviate some of these noise problems.

If you search the web for soundproofing, you'll find a number of great for…

New blog location

A lot of people I know have questions about how they can simply and affordably add some soundproofing to their apartments and homes, whether they're renters or owners. Because I live in an urban environment, and I've learned a lot through trial and error myself, I started blogging about it. But I realize that not everyone who reads my blog wants to read about soundproofing and noise issues every day, so I'm moving my soundproofing posts to this new blog. Feel free to share your stories and questions here about how, where, and why to soundproof or buy materials for soundproofing any part of your living quarters.