Soundproofing in the ACT?

tidalik 11 February 2013 13

hi Rioters,

Does anyone know of a consultant or a company in Canberra that can give advice about retrofitting soundproofing for a residential home?

Finding the source of the problem would be really good (i.e. where in the house the noise is leaking through the most), as would suggesting a range of options rather than one single product.


Sleepless in the South

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13 Responses to Soundproofing in the ACT?
Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 5:39 pm 12 Feb 13

You can get a product called v-hush from viridian. It is a laminated glass with a thicker inter layer. It costs a bit more and I have never used it but according to viridian(lol) it is magic for sound, especially when used in a igu.

If you have timber frames then get a quote.

You can find the specs on the viridian website.

King_of_the_Muppets King_of_the_Muppets 5:04 pm 12 Feb 13

I would strongly recommend double glazing.

If you cant afford the real stuff and don’t mind potentially loosing the ability to operate your windows properly, or the look of ‘home brew’ solution go for it.

Assuming you have the standard brick veneer house you can get insulation which is thermal and accoustic installed. This will help with heating a cooling as well.

I would have some concern about the ‘blow in style’ of insulation though. It fills the timber studs but also fills the cavity. A cavity in brick veneer construction is both used as a thermal break and to allow any moisture that penetrates the bricks (they are porous), or finds its way in around windows etc, to run down the back face of the brickwork and our via the damp proof course and weepholes. I would hope that this insulation is water repelant but it could help water reach the back of your plasterboard lining. The thought of mold in there scares me. In newer homes insulation in the walls is protected by a lining between the cavity and studs.

I would love to hear any comments about this concern as this blow in type of insulation is the easiest to retro-fit an existing home with. Much easier than tearing down all the plasterboard!

AlexanderWatson AlexanderWatson 3:29 pm 12 Feb 13

You can get lucky with common walls if there’s a decent cavity in the middle. A pretty common type we find is a double brick wall with about a 50-60mm cavity in the middle. If this is the case we can pump rockwool into the cavity to absorb the sound that’s currently passing through. Rockwool is a great acoustic insulator and also provides great thermal and fire protection benefits.

Also, if you decide to go down the road of soundcheck gyprock, it’s a good idea to use the rubber mounts that CSR make to cut down the vibration that gets passed from the common wall to the gyprock sheet.

Happy to come out and give you some ideas if you like, even if you decide to go DIY

Sandman Sandman 8:54 am 12 Feb 13

Good luck if it’s coming through a common wall. We have one of those too. The sound tends to go through all the brick rather than being limited to just that one wall. There’s a soundproof mat a couple mm thick that you could line the common wall with and then put soundstop Gyprock over that. It might cost a bit though and you’ll possibly still get vibrations through other parts of the house.

I just went and told the neighbours that if I get kept awake too much, I’ve got power tools and audio equipment that can make a racket beyond their wildest dreams and wouldn’t hesitate to use them.

JC JC 7:29 am 12 Feb 13

You forgot one important downside with the DIY methods, which is once fitted it is impossible to open the window if you so wish. I believe Magnetite has similar issues, but change impossible to impractical.

Although not cheap at least a proper double glazed window can be opened (of course not if one has chosen a fixed window)

AsparagusSyndrome AsparagusSyndrome 12:47 am 12 Feb 13

Sorry tidalik. I’ve heard nothing.

OpenYourMind OpenYourMind 10:34 pm 11 Feb 13

We’ve gone down the DIY path and our double glazing has worked out well. Firstly, be aware that the requirements between soundproofing and temperature for double glaze. The easy DIY method is, depending on your window frame, measure your window then subtract about 3mm. Contact ACT Plastics and purchase a sheet of perspex/acrylic. Fit a timber bead in your window frame, then use some kind of clip to hold the perspex in. The depth of the timber bead will determine your double glazing space – we used 12mm bead. Before fitting the perspex, throw in a bunch of silica gel to soak up any condensation. Not all windows lend themselves to this solution. The benefits with perspex are it performs thermally as well as glass if not better, it won’t break, it’s easy to work with and it’s easy to resize. The downsides are it won’t last forever, it scratches more easily, it can distort a little and it makes some noise as it expands and contracts.

tidalik tidalik 9:07 pm 11 Feb 13

Thanks everyone for your suggestions. I’ll definitely give Alexander Watson a call.

Thanks for suggesting Magnetite too — I am actually getting some Magnetite put in this week, but mainly for heating/cooling reasons. It was organised long before the noise problem cropped up. I’m hoping it might help, but I don’t think the windows are the main problem. Not to go into too much detail, but it is a common wall (and whatever is going on behind it) that is responsible for me losing sleep.

xcskier xcskier 3:27 pm 11 Feb 13

I had noise issues too. I found the following measures were very effective. Double glazing (the wider the gap between the two panes the better is the sound proofing). Insulating ceilings and wall cavities. Installing solid doors for bedrooms and front door entrance. Rugs and heavy curtains (sound bounces off hard surfaces). Cladding water pipes under the house.
I also found it helpful to create my own ambient pleasant sounds (eg music, fish tank with filter and water fountain).
Hope this helps.

SupaSal SupaSal 1:54 pm 11 Feb 13

I would also recommend Alexander Watson, some great ideas!

FarrerGirl FarrerGirl 1:13 pm 11 Feb 13

zorro29 said :

windows are your most likely culprit and double glazing is the best way to fix that. i used magnetite when i was living in the burbs and found it reasonably effective (albeit pretty pricey if you have large/numerous windows)…but it’s easily retrofitted.

We have Magnetite on the front display windows – they certainly helped for noise reduction – the price was approx. $700 each (so quite expensive). For the back bedroom windows, I created my own double glazing using perspex cut to size at Plastic Creations (Fyshwick). For $100 a window, this was loads cheaper. This option only really works for smaller windows that ideally have a wooden frames (it is easier to attach the perspex to wood than onto aluminium windows frames).

We also had in-the-wall insulation put in – our main purpose was to improve our energy efficiency, however it has also helped with noise reduction.

zorro29 zorro29 11:33 am 11 Feb 13

windows are your most likely culprit and double glazing is the best way to fix that. i used magnetite when i was living in the burbs and found it reasonably effective (albeit pretty pricey if you have large/numerous windows)…but it’s easily retrofitted.

smallfishtony smallfishtony 10:52 am 11 Feb 13

Sleepless in the South,
Contact Jeremy at Alexander Watson they are energy efficiency consultants and advisers and there may be options such as double glazing, insulation types etc that might help.
Hope this helps…Tony

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