Photograph of  . Guide to Sound Control in Building Floors & Ceilings
     

  • SOUND CONTROL for FLOORS - CONTENTS: Quiet floors: how to control floor noise transmission in buildings. STC: Sound transmission class ratings for different floor or ceiling structures. Principles of floors ound transmission in buildings; Ceilign & floor noise or sound deadening underlayment for laminate floor installations; How to make a building ceiling or floor quiet: floor & ceiling sound isolation strategies; Sound insulation designs for building ceilings & floors, List of ceiling-floor soundproofing materials
  • POST a QUESTION or READ FAQs abouut how to control sound and noise transmission through floors
  • REFERENCES

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Sound control or repairs for noisy, squeaky floors:

This article explains methods and materials used to control sound transmission in or through building floors or ceilings - how to build quiet ceilings & floors, how to prevent noise transmission between apartments or rooms in buildings.

This article series presents methods and materials used to control sound transmission in buildings: how to make a quiet home, office, or place of business using sound isolation for ceilings, floors, walls, plumbing, etc.

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Sound Control Methods for Building Floors

Table of Sound Ratings for Floor & Wall Assemblies (C) J Wiley & Sons Best Practices Steven Bliss

The page top photo shows floor re-framing in process in an older building where no sound control details had been applied. Details of floor soundproofing designs are given below.

Air-bourne sound vs structure-bourne sound

The sound transmission class (STC) rating of a floor measures only the reduction in airborne sound transmission. A floor, however, also transmits structure-borne sound, such as footsteps or a slammed door, directly through the materials.

The ability to reduce impact sound is rated by the Impact Isolation Class (IIC) rating.

The most cost-effective technique to reduce impact noise is to add a carpet and pad.

For example, adding a carpet and pad to a conventional plywood subfloor over a gypsum ceiling increases the IIC rating from 37 to 65. By comparison, it increases the STC rating by only 4 points.

Where higher STC and IIC ratings are needed, a resilient channel can be added to the ceiling below.

Where this is not possible, for example when the joists are exposed below, you can use a floating floor over a layer of soundboard or a high-mass floor over a layer of sand or lightweight concrete. (see Table 5-19).

See our Table of STC and IIC ratings for Typical Floor Assemblies shown in the table above. [Click to enlarge & see detail]

IIC levels are of greatest concern in stacked multifamily dwellings or in a single-family dwelling with bedrooms below other living spaces.

Acoustical experts recommend a minimum IIC rating of 50 to 55 in ceiling/floor construction, separating living units in multifamily construction.

IIC levels are of greatest concern in stacked multifamily dwellings or in a single-family dwelling with bedrooms below other living spaces.

Acoustical experts recommend a minimum IIC rating of 50 to 55 in ceiling/floor construction, separating living units in multifamily construction. HUD recommendations for bedrooms under living spaces are shown in Table 5-20. While these recommendations were developed for multifamily dwellings, they provide reasonable targets for single-family homes where sound privacy is desired.

Recommended Levels of Floor Sound Insulation

HUD recommendations for bedrooms under living spaces are shown in Table 5-20 our Table of Minimum Sound Insulation for Ceiling/Floor Assemblies Above Bedrooms.

Table 5-20: Minimum Sound Insulation for Ceiling & Floor Assemblies Above Bedrooms  (C) J Wiley, S Bliss

HUD recommendations for bedrooms under living spaces are shown in Table 5-20 our Table of Minimum Sound Insulation for Ceiling/Floor Assemblies Above Bedrooms.

-- Adapted with permission from Best Practices Guide to Residential Construction.

Horrible Noisy Ceiling Notes - Restaurant Ambience?

Sound control measures in a CIA restaurant ceiling (C) Daniel FriedmanOur photo (left) shows reflected ceiling noise control measures taken by experts, managers of a restaurant at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York.

Even though the ceiling is hard-surfaced, simply suspending a draped cloth was enough to reduce the noise level enough that people could enjoy dining and talking.

In contrast to the successful noise reduction provided by the CIA's draped ceiling shown above, a futile attempt to make a restaurant bearable can hurt business.

In a large open room in a restaurant in Guanajuato, Mexico, is built with hard surfaces on floors, walls, and ceilings.

The noise level when just a few tables are occupied is so unbearable that added to kitchen noises, many customers dine at this business only once - or insist on outdoor seating where even the nearby highway noises are more tolerable.

Use a Sound Control Underlayment for Laminate Floor Installations

Our photo (left) (from a Home Depot® display) shows Roberts Consolidated Industries AirGuard™ laminate flooring underlayment product used for "click-lock" and laminate floors.

AirGuard laminate floor underlayment (C) D Friedman AirGuard laminate floor underlayment (C) D Friedman

This flooring underlayment incorporates raised foam beads that add sound-deadening cushioning below the laminate floor while also, according to the manufacturer, permitting some air movement below the flooring material. The underlayment is also treated with Microban® to reduce mold growth.

Our building sound control articles begin at SOUND CONTROL in buildings.

Other noise and sound diagnosis and control articles are found at NOISE / SOUND DIAGNOSIS & CURE.

This article series discusses noise and sound control in buildings, and includes excerpts or adaptations from Best Practices Guide to Residential Construction, by Steven Bliss, courtesy of Wiley & Sons.

 

 

Continue reading at SOUND TRANSMISSION CLASS RATINGS or select a topic from the More Reading links shown below.

Or see FLOOR WOOD, DAMAGE DIAGNOSIS

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SOUND CONTROL for FLOORS at InspectApedia.com - online encyclopedia of building & environmental inspection, testing, diagnosis, repair, & problem prevention advice.

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