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Why should you soundproof your home? What benefits will it bring to you?

As the population continues to grow there is less and less people living in rural areas so therefore noise pollution plays a major problem in communities.  There is a greater need to soundproof your home in order to create that tranquil and peaceful environment you so dream for.  Why limit soundproofing to your home there are lots of benefits to soundproofing schools and businesses.

We look at the main reasons why you would benefit from soundproofing your walls:

Noisy neighbours in the flat above

If you live in a flat then you are more likely to suffer from noise pollution as you have a resident directly above and directly below you.  Noisy neighbours can be an invasion to your privacy and can affect the quality of your life.  By installing acoustic insulation you are en route to saying good bye to this noise for good.  It will create a barrier between you and your noisy neighbours.

Traffic noise from passing cars and bikes

If you like thousands live on a main road you are likely to be fighting a constant battle with high levels of traffic.  Although cars have to comply with noise standards themselves unfortunately there is no specific legal limit in place on noise pollution in the roads.  Noisy traffic can be somewhat worse at night when you are trying to sleep.  It is a proven fact that noise pollution from ongoing traffic can cause an increase in stress levels and high blood pressure.

Ongoing exposure to a consistent type of noise

Frequent exposure to lots of noise can in some extreme cases cause a loss of hearing.  You do not need to be old to lose your hearing as noise pollution can affect people of all ages.  Just because you feel it is not causing you harm when you are young, the pressure on your ears will gradually increase over a period of time.  Dependent on the type of noise that you are exposed to it will cause short term and long term issues.  You do not have to expose yourself to this as there is something that can be done about it.  Soundproofing your walls and floors will ensure that the insulation absorbs the sound waves so that your ears don’t have to.

Also listening to constant noise can affect your ability to concentrate.  If you are a home worker then you will want the peace and quiet to get your work done.

Loud music

Perhaps your neighbour sees themselves as a keen musician and plays their guitar or drums for long periods of time without any consideration to their neighbours.  If this is the case soundproofing walls and floors will create a sense of harmony between neighbours and then your neighbour can play his music to his heart’s content.

Previously people have moved home in order to avoid noise problems.  But acoustic insulation means that this can be avoided.  Speak to a professional soundproofing company who will provide solutions and offer advice.

Soundproof your floors to minimise your stress levels

How many times have you been in the unfortunate position where you have been woken up by your noisy neighbours from the flat above you?  Or a member of your family forever getting up in the middle of the night to go to the toilet?  Maybe you work in an office that is in the same building as a gym and the noise from the aerobics session is stopping you from being able to concentrate.  Alternatively you are just a light sleeper and would love for your bedroom to be really really quiet if that is at all possible.

Noise pollution can be a huge problem for people especially if the source of the noise is a constant drown.  Not only does it interrupt your sleeping pattern but it can bring stress upon your life as it battles with your thought process.

How is noise transmitted?

All types of noise cause a vibration and will vibrate through every type of wall including those made out of brick or wood.  It will even radiate outwards from the same solid material.  For this reason your ceilings and walls are built with an air cavity and two types of outer solid surface.

As previously mentioned if you live in a flat then it is inevitable that unwanted noise from neighbours will break through the floors.  The most common complaints by people living in flats are kids running around, the sound of music from a stereo and television noise.  The great news is that there are ways in which you can soundproof your floors so that this need not be a complaint for you.

If you think you can try and block the noise yourself by using pink batts you would be wrong because the noise can and will travel around the insulation.  In order for your insulation to be effective you need to break the sound connection.

A professional company with experience and expertise will work with you to find soundproofing solutions that are needed to get the stress of noise out of your life for good.  Stress can come in all shapes and sizes and can be made worse when your mind can not relax.  If background noise is causing you unnecessary strain on your life contact the professionals today who will look at ways to reduce noise pollution in your home.

There are two types of soundproofing available to you.  These are acoustic matting and floating flooring.  Both options have the capabilities of reducing noise transmission through your floors.

How do you decide which type of floor you need?

A professional soundproofing company will work with you to decide which types of floor insulation are required for your home or office space.  It will all depend on the types of floor finish you currently have, such as carpet, laminate, tiles or solid wood.  Other factors to take into consideration are the height of the room and whether there are any restrictions.   As well as any building regulations that may be in place that prevents you from having one type of soundproofing material.

The end result being a peaceful night’s sleep and a relaxed mind!

Noise: What is it?

We are all familiar with what noise is but we often struggle with the ability to describe it.  We know what it is when we hear it and most of the time it annoys us.  But if we can’t get a proper appreciation of what noise is, how it travels through the air and what happens when it hits a surface then we can’t answer the question why it annoys us and more importantly what we can do to control it.

We will look at noise in more detail and what we can do to combat it.

How do we measure noise?

Noise is measured in decibels.  Any noise that is higher than 80 decibels is classed as being uncomfortable on the ears and can cause potential problems to our hearing.  Examples of those types of noise over 80 decibels include the noise of being inside a sports car.  When noise reaches over 100 decibels it will start to cause you problems.  An example is the sound inside of a factory.

Noises below 80 decibels can be extremely annoying at times but they should not cause you any physical long term damage.  But if left it can cause a mental strain as it is proven to increase anxiety and stress levels.

The only way you can reduce these sounds is by eliminating the sound at source or by soundproofing your property.  Eliminating the sound at source in most cases is impossible because we do not have control of the sound, such as noisy neighbours from the flat above or traffic outside.

How is noise transmitted?

Sound will travel through the air and cause waves.  Think of the ripples that are caused in a pond when a stone is thrown in the water, sound works in exactly the same way.  As the ripples get further away from the source they get smaller, decreasing in intensity.

Soundproofing your floors work in two and completely different ways.  They will either reduce the noise or absorb it.  Noise reduction will block the sound waves by putting objects in its path whereas noise absorption will transform the sound wave into heat.

What types of noise are there?

There are two types of noise, airborne and impact.  Airborne as explained in the title is noise that travels through the air carrying noise such as people talking or loud instruments.  Another type of noise is impact.  Again as the name suggests this is when two objects come together such as a door slamming or a ball being smashed into a window.

Soundproofing will massively reduce the level of airborne and impact noise.  Noise can rarely be silenced but it can certainly be massively reduced.  The purpose of soundproofing is to create a sound barrier and break the density of the sound.  A door can be described as a sound barrier and by closing a door it reduced the amount of sound that can pass through it.  Soundproofing materials will help screen the sound in a similar manner.

How to soundproof your floors

Are you looking for ways in which to stop airborne or impact sound from travelling through your floors?  If you are facing the sound of furniture being moved around from the home below you or a kid playing with a football then you are dealing with impact noise.  However if you have a contending battle with a neighbours TV or constantly overhearing your neighbours chatting below then you are dealing with airborne noise.

This article will help you determine what is the best type of soundproofing for your floors to hopefully remove these types of sound.

Are you dealing with airborne noise or impact noise?

AIRBORNE NOISE: This is when the sound travels from the source directly to the recipient of the sound.  This is likely to be through small holes or ceiling cavities.  Airborne noise is typically the sound of a TV, the barking of a dog or loud music.

IMPACT NOISE: Impact noise is caused by the sound vibrating through a surface.  Typically a sound will hit the floor and the impact will cause the noise to vibrate through the structure of the building.  The general path of noise is for it to go to the ceiling of the flat below.  Impact noises are typically the sound of children running across the floor, an item being dropped on the floor or someone playing with a football.

Typically floors are constructed using plasterboard and plaster with timber joints underneath.  Unfortunately this kind of material provides no insulation and does not absorb any of the sound.  This means that both airborne and impact sound can travel very easily from floor to floor and room to room.

How can you stop airborne noise from going through the floor into the ceiling below?

Insulating with acoustic insulation will reduce the impact of airborne sound.  Building regulations advice that 100mm insulation is used but a professional soundproofing company will be able to provide more information on what is suitable for your home or office.  The higher the density of the insulation the less likely airborne noise will be able to travel.  Do not confuse acoustic insulation with thermal insulation which is lower in density meaning it does not cover the same level of sound insulation as acoustic insulation does.

How can you stop impact sound from going through the floor into the ceiling below?

In order to stop the impact noise from travelling you need to effectively reduce the vibration that is caused when an impact sound hits the surface.  How the sound travels will always depend on the force of the impact.

Two types of flooring that are proven to reduce impact noise are acoustic matting and floating floors.  Both of these will reduce the impact but the one that will work for your home or office will depend on the flooring finish you have.

If you have carpet, vinyl tiles, laminate or even solid wood flooring then a professional soundproofing company will determine what soundproofing floor best suits your needs and requirements, ultimately having the highest outcome.

How acoustic foam can reduce your stress levels

Our ears are very sensitive and a build up of noise in our ear drums can cause both short and long term damage.  Not only is noise pollution proven to damage your ears but it will have an impact on other areas of your body.  Noise pollution can cause an increase in stress levels, a strain on your heart and inevitably increase your blood pressure.

If you are a victim of noise pollution you can complain to your local council especially if the cause is due to noisy neighbours or pollution from trading estates.  Alternatively if you are being kept up at night due to the constant drown of cars going past outside or even a railway at the end of your garden it is possible that you can apply for a grant to cover the cost of acoustic insulation.  Yes, help is available to you.  Don’t put up with noise pollution when you don’t have to.

Did you know that individuals can face a fine of up to £5000 whilst businesses such as a factory can incur a penalty fine of up to £20000?  While you would think that the threat of these fines would discourage our noisy neighbours and noisy factories, unfortunately our homes are still being invaded with unwanted noise from nearby properties and streets.  Unless you are fortunate enough to live in a remote location with no other house around you, you are not going to avoid this reality.

Have you heard of acoustic foam?  Fitting this form of insulation to your walls and ceilings will prevent any unwanted noise from entering your home.  The acoustic foam will absorb the sound and prevent it from bouncing and travelling around your room.  This foam is available in a range of sizes and thicknesses.  Contact a professional soundproofing company who will work with you to find the right size of material for your home.  Acoustic foam can be customised to meet the size of your room.

How does acoustic foam work?

This material has an uneven surface with jagged edges which will absorb any sound that hits it.  It will allow for the sound waves to enter the material but then these waves are converted to heat.  To avoid the risk of a fire due to the build up of heat caused by the conversion of sound to heat this material is flame retardant.  You may think this won’t look attractive in your home against your nicely plastered walls but think again, acoustic foam is available in a range of colours and fabrics to blend in perfectly with the rest of the surroundings in your home.

Maybe it is you causing excessive amounts of noise as you like playing a musical instrument at the small hours of the morning.  Acoustic foam works perfectly for you too as it will ensure that the noise does not escape from your home and annoy your next door neighbours.  Leaving you to play your music to your heart’s content.  As previously explained the uneven surface will absorb the heat so that the noise does not escape your walls.

Why should you invest in sound proof insulation?

If this is a question that you are asking yourself you need to consider the return on investment you will get in the long run.  Sound proof insulation will not only keep the noise from rippling through your walls, such as your neighbours chatting or your kids arguing in the next room but it will also provide energy savings.  Yes that’s right, a reduction in your energy bills. Continue reading

What is sound proofing?

Sound proofing can be defined as being able to reduce the ability of sound to travel between two points and it can achieve this by either adsorbing the sound or reducing it.  Due to increases in technology and the popularity of home professional recording studios, sound proofing a room in residential homes has become very popular especially in properties where tenants share walls such as flats, terraced and semi-detached homes. Continue reading

Benefits of soundproofing your room and more importantly using a professional

Depending on the use of your room, you may consider having it soundproofed so to reduce any unnecessary noise.  If you are a regular homeworker then the answer to increase your productivity maybe to soundproof your study so that you have a quiet part of the house for you to concentrate.  Alternatively if you are someone with a set of drums that can’t resist banging them in the small hours of the night you may consider soundproofing in order to keep you on the right side of your neighbours. Continue reading