Soundproofing a Condo

M.B. Writes

We have a beach condo that is an open floor plan – there’s a main space across the front that is all windows, wood floors and then drywall – when a movie is on the whole condo can hear is. If we’re in there talking, the kids’ pinball and pool games take over. Wondering about creating a track across the back with sound dampening curtains so that in those cases we can block off the room and otherwise it can be open for the views.

I am asked questions similar to this on a fairly regular basis, and unfortunately there is no easy answer. People come across our website by doing searches for things like ‘Acoustical Curtains’ and we do, in fact, have a product with those exact words as a title. People are commonly looking for something that can be easily pulled across an opening or over a window to block sound, and then easily retracted into a corner, similar to a hospital curtain. Unfortunately, this is MUCH easier said than done, there really isn’t a product to fill this void in the market.

The acoustical Quilted Curtains that we have are more of an acoustical panel than a curtain. They do not pleat up easily due to the core of the product. In order to stop or block sound, a product has to have a significant amount of mass or density. This is done by incorporating a very dense, very heavy layer of barium loaded vinyl into the center of the curtain. This vinyl weighs 1 lb. per square foot and will generally block as much sound as a typical 2′ x 4′ wall with sheet rock on either side. These panels can be installed on a heavy duty track, like a hospital curtain and can be rolled out of the way as a panel, but not pleated up into a corner. There is a decent write up that I did about a year ago here (//www.acousticalsurfaces.com/curtan_stop/pdf/testa/Black_Nexxus.pdf ) which shows the curtains installed.

So, in conclusion, we do have a product that would work for you, but we would be doing so by using a product with industrial roots in a residential situation. If you would like a quote or if you want to see some product samples, please feel free to contact me.


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