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BOB’s guide to… sound insulation myths

When it comes to purchasing acoustic materials for a project, it can be difficult to understand how they differ to other materials you commonly use.

Some most definitely do, but if you are looking at a simple conversion project, or “Material Change of Use” (MCOU) – as it’s referred to in Building Regulations, you may be able to use products that you’re more familiar with.

Example: a timber floor upgrade

How do you upgrade a timber floor in a house that’s being turned into flats?

It is a common belief that you need a Resilient Bar to provide insulation for a new ceiling, but that isn’t always the case: there are alternative options.

The three elements for creating a sound build are essentially mass, isolation and air tightness.

For this particular project, mass can be achieved by using the correct plasterboard and the correct density of mineral wool.

Isolation doesn’t need a specialist Resilient Bar as some may try to recommend. It can be achieved via new ceiling joists hung off wall hangers meaning the new ceiling is completely isolated from the existing one.

Air tightness can be improved by filling all the large gaps in the existing floorboards and the perimeter of the wall floor junctions with acoustic sealant.

Now, this may not be suitable for all projects as the starting point may be different – for example depth of the existing joists, type of original ceiling, lathe and plaster or plasterboard – but it’s certainly a viable alternative.

How do you know which exact products to use though?

Well we can help here too.

Build Aviator, available at Jewson, can offer an acoustic desktop study and material specification, while also providing acoustic testing on your project upon completion. Because, let’s face it, all (MCOU) projects need one.

Build Aviator’s services are designed to make the build process smoother, from design and planning through to procurement and completion.