Tag Archive: soundproofing insulation

  1. The depth and dynamics of Acoustic Panels

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    The ability to perceive sound is a gift. Like all senses, it can produce immense pleasure and it can annoy you like crazy. There is a big difference between the volume produced by your favorite band in a classic venue and the volume produced by a house full of screaming family. It has less to do with the fact that your family is speaking in conflicting tones and more to do with the fact that the music venue was designed to sound great, whereas your kitchen, loaded with hard surfaces, handles sound much more poorly.

    But why doesn’t your home sound great? It’s just an oversight. Most homes aren’t designed to handle sound, but you can take care of that by yourself, quite affordably. There are simple things you can do to take care of the noise pollution in your home and create a much more comfortable gathering space. 

    Acoustical panels in the Living Room

    In most modern houses, the living room is the largest room in the home, making it a natural gathering spot. You’ve got a big TV and couches in there. What’s not to love? Open spaces with hard walls may look inviting, but they don’t handle sound well, and if you have hardwood floors to boot, you may have a bit of an echo chamber on your hands. Some well-placed acoustic panels will go a long way. You want to cover the hardest, most reflective surfaces, so the walls and ceiling are obvious targets. Keep in mind, you don’t want to completely soundproof the room, as that creates a silence that can be equally unsettling.

    soundproofing living room


    Sound bounces around the room like a racquetball, so by treating adjacent walls with acoustic panels, you can effectively reduce the amount of reverberation and echo. Since the majority of noise bouncing around the room comes from peoples’ mouths, it’s a good idea to focus wall treatments at mouth level, or somewhere in the range of 3-7 feet above the floor. You don’t want to completely cover the walls, but mixing them up on larger surfaces is sure to create the desired effect.


    Not all acoustic panels are created the same. Make sure any acoustic panel you choose to hang are wrapped with acoustically transparent fabric, which allows the soundwaves to penetrate the sound-absorbing material behind it. If the fabric reflects sounds, it doesn’t do a whole lot of good to you. If you can blow air through the fabric, it’s likely transparent. This is a spot where you want to make sure to purchase high-quality products since lower quality panels don’t absorb and trap sounds as effectively.


    Since sound travels in more of an expanding cone than a straight line, a few acoustic panels made for the ceiling, paired with a nice rug will help keep noise a little further at bay. If you have a textured ceiling, it may help a little, but adding a few ceiling panels adds a whole new level of texture to the ceiling, and makes it much more impressive to look at. When you incorporate sound-absorbing materials, you won’t find your conversation competing with the music, so you can set the mood without creating a shouting match.

    soundproofing kitchen


    The Kitchen

    People also love to gather in the kitchen. It smells good. That’s where the drinks are. There’s usually a table and chairs somewhere. It also has lots of smooth surfaces that are easy to clean. That means it also tends to get loud when you start getting close to capacity. A nice set of designer acoustical curtains could be helpful here. Since the walls are usually lined with reflective appliances, cupboards, and countertops, you likely have less room to work with. The curtains can help with windows, which can be large and are very acoustically reflective. This is another great room for ceiling panels, which give your ceiling a great new texture and add dimension to your kitchen.


    Acoustical panels for the Bedroom

    Do you or your partner snore? Does the noise seem to echo and amplify when the other is trying to sleep? It probably does. Think about adding a few acoustic panels to your decor. They look great in the bedroom, and they come in enough styles that you’ll have no problem finding something to match your space. Again, make sure they are wrapped with acoustically transparent fabric, and you’ll find new peace that will help you relax and sleep better. The fabric also pulls a little double duty with absorbing some of the light in the room, making it feel more tranquil.


    The Utility Room

    Whether your utility room is in the basement or on the main floor, chances are, some of the large machinery in there makes noise that you may have to compete with. You can quiet the machinery with moving parts, like your washer and dryer, with things like pads or mounts. The less the machine moves, the less noise it will make. Another issue arising out of the utility room is noise associated with your HVAC system. There are many different products for quieting a noisy HVAC system, so bring your questions, and we can devise a plan that works for your unique situation.


    The Conclusion

    Adding quality acoustic panels wrapped with acoustically transparent fabric is a great addition to any room where you are gathering, listening to music, or just want some peace and quiet. They look great, are easily matched to your decor, and they create the kind of attention to detail that affects you and your guests on a subconscious level. They create a mood that you can achieve with a few other products. Try some out in the common areas of your house, and you’re sure to pick up a stack for the rest of the house.

  2. Soundproofing a Wall

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    how to install green glue in walls

    Soundproofing a room or an office is all about keeping unwanted noise out and keeping sound inside. Like thermal insulation, soundproofing a space means structurally isolating it – separating the outside from the inside.

    There are any numbers of reasons why you may want to soundproof a room. You might require professional confidentiality – such as in a lawyer’s or doctor’s office. Perhaps you want

    to create an entertainment room in your home, or maybe you’d like to seal the wall of sound in your teenager’s bedroom as they blast their tunes.

    In any scenario, you can structurally and acoustically isolate rooms by soundproofing internal walls. The goal is to increase the mass and the density of a wall, and ensure that all gaps are properly sealed. Below, we’ll show you at least one method of soundproofing an internal wall.

    Soundproofing an Internal Wall

    We will assume that you have already completed a wall frame using standard 2″×4″ studs spaced on 2′ centers.

    Determine the square footage of drywall you will need based on the measurements of the wall you’ll be soundproofing.

    Note: you’ll need a double-order of the 5/8″ drywall.

    A Few Notes on Soundproofing Materials

    Soundproofing Insulation

    For great sound blocking insulation, we recommend our UltraTouch™ Denim Insulation. It’s made of 80% post-consumer recycled denim, it doesn’t itch, and it’s easy to handle. It’s also a Class-A building material which offers maximum R- and high NRC values to reduce noise.

    Another option for wall insulation is our CFAB Cellulose Insulation Soundproofing. A first of its kind in our industry, we make our CFAB panels with a cellulose-based material consisting of 65-75% recycled content. CFAB cellulose products also represent a very highly environmentally-responsible solution for acoustical materials.

    Sound Blocking Gypsum Board

    If you’re seeking the highest value on your soundproofing investment, we also recommend that you use our SOUNDBREAK® XP® Acoustically Enhanced Gypsum Board. This innovative gypsum drywall achieves high STC ratings and lets you construct walls that are thinner, more cost effective, and very reliable. In addition to deadening sound, it’s also resistant to mold, mildew, and moisture.

    Inter-Layer Sound Blocking

    In this application, you’ll be creating a double layer of drywall, so we also recommend that you use Green Glue, sandwiched between the two layers of drywall. It’s easy to apply with a standard caulking gun, and it delivers additional damping levels as high as 30%.

    Acoustical Gap Sealant

    acoustical sealantFinally, every system is only as strong as its weakest link, so make sure that you completely seal all gaps at the edges of your new wall – walls, floors, and ceilings included. Did you know that even a 1 percent gap in a wall system can decrease its sound blocking ability by as much as 50 percent?

    We have two products which you can use for this purpose: AcoustiSeal™ Acoustical Sealant and GREENchoice™ Acoustical Sound Sealant. Each of these products is easy to apply with a standard caulking gun, and contribute to higher STC ratings for your wall(s).

    Materials and Equipment

    Standard carpentry resources: measuring/marking, drywall saw, power drill, drywall lift, caulking gun et

    Installing Drywall On the First Side of the Wall

    1. Install 1/2″ SOUNDBREAK® XP® Acoustically Enhanced Gypsum Board on the first side of your wall frame, using 1½” drywall screws.

    Installing Insulation

    1. Install 3″ UltraTouch™ Denim Insulation or 2″ CFAB Cellulose Insulation Soundproofing.

    2. Cut the insulation so that it fits snugly within the 2″×4″ wall frame leaving no gaps between the wall studs and joints where vertical pieces meet.

    Applying the First Layer of Drywall on the Second Side

    1. On back side of the wall, install a layer of 5/8″ SOUNDBREAK® XP® Acoustically Enhanced Gypsum Board.

    NOTE: Leave a 1/4″ gap around the entire perimeter of the wall.

    2. Use your acoustical sealant to seal the entire 1/4″ gap – including the ceiling and the floor as well as the vertical edges of the wall.

    Applying the Second Layer of Drywall

    1. Once you’ve measured and cut your drywall, generously apply Green Glue to the backside. green glue

    NOTE: Use 2 tubes per standard 8′ sheet of drywall – or 2-1/2 tubes per 10′ sheet of drywall

    2. Screw in the second layer of drywall using 2-1/2″ drywall screws (you’ll have to penetrate two layers of 5/8″ drywall which = 1-1/4″). Remember to stagger the seams when you apply the second layer of 5/8″ gypsum board on top of the first. This will prevent any leakage due to doubled-up seams.

    3. Again, use the acoustical sealant to seal the entire 1/4″ gap – including the ceiling and the floor as well as the vertical edges of the wall.

    NOTE: The 1/4″ gap around the perimeter of the wall, once sealed, will de-couple the whole wall from the frame, thereby “isolating” it.

    4. Finally, tape, sand, prime, and paint your new wall.


    While you could get even more sophisticated in terms of building fully de-coupled walls, this method will provide you incredible soundproofing quality for your investment.

    Of course, there are many strategies for every budget, so for more information and a wealth of resources, please visit https://www.acousticalsurfaces.com/.