When it comes to soundproofing in any type of area, the proper amount of insulation should be installed. This is perhaps the biggest component to soundproofing in the home in general, so overlooking insulation is going to prevent a person from experiencing the best results.
Insulation, along with soundproofing materials on the outside of the walls, can really make a person feel like they have very satisfying results. Understanding the best solutions for soundproofing insulation is going to take a room to another level.
Why is Insulation so Important for Soundproofing?
Whether it is a single-family home or an apartment building, just about every living space has cavity walls. That means that there are two solid layers on each side, and space in between for some separation. Empty space can be left alone, or there can be insulation put into the walls.
Cavity walls come in many different styles, so it is important to have insulation in some cases more than others. For example, a standard cavity wall usually has two brick walls with some type of insulation in the middle.
There is an increasing number of homes that are actually built as a prefab building. Prefab means that everything is made in factories to not only speed up the process, but save money. It might help the bottom line, but it does make a few sacrifices.
Prefab walls have a lot of advantages, but it does leave walls that are a bit too thin. This is when insulation is needed more than ever, and the right type of insulation makes a huge difference.
It might not have been important back in the olden days to invest in outstanding insulation, but now it is thanks to prefab walls.
Insulation is vital for soundproofing, but it is also responsible for some other things as well. Good insulation will trap air that is escaping out of a room.
This makes sure that a room stays warm when it needs to in the winter, and cool in the summer. This is mostly for walls that face outdoors, but it can be used for interior walls as well.
Interior walls normally do not get the same type of attention, but that changes when a person is looking to soundproof something. The walls as-is will do a decent job at soundproofing, but insulation takes things to another level.
What Are the Major Types of Insulation
Insulation options break down into three big categories, and the majority of people will gravitate towards one in particular. Even though it might seem like it is a process to look at the three types and decide a winner, that is just part one of figuring out the entire process.
From a soundproofing perspective, blown insulation is not really going to do that much good. The only time it might come in handy is if the room in need of soundproofing is in the attic.
That is about the only location that this insulation is used anymore, as it is distributed uniquely. The material, which is a combination of fiberglass and cellulose, is blown in chunks to fill up space.
Foam Spray Insulation
There are definitely some people who believe that foam spray insulation is the future. It is very easy to work with, and people put it inside brick cavities without actually having to take them apart.
This insulation is in a liquid form in the beginning. The polyurethane can go into a cavity by just using a small hole. It will start to form to the space, and the process goes by pretty quickly.
Once a person feels like the entire cavities filled, they can close off the hole and go from there. It is a pretty straightforward process, but it is expensive.
It is so much different as far as price is concerned that a lot of people will bypass this type of insulation purely because of that. (Source)
Without question, batt insulation is the most popular option for people who are looking to control sound and temperature.
This insulation comes in rectangular panels most of the time, and they can vary in thickness quite a bit. Most are going to look for something that fills the cavity as much as possible, and just overall makes life a little bit easier.
Batt insulation usually has a few different materials combined to make it up. There is cotton, mineral wool, fiberglass, and more that go into making this insulation.
Soundproofing might not be the first thing people think about with batt insulation, but it is versatile enough that it can help with multiple things at once. As the most cost-efficient option and a ton of brands competing for business, it just makes sense to invest. (Source)
How Batt Soundproofing Insulation Works
People like to compare batt soundproofing insulation to a concealed type of acoustic foam. They indeed have a lot of the same properties, and it allows people to have an extra layer that can always help. Combining batt insulation and actual acoustic foam on the outside is going to make a room have professional sound quality.
The reason why it works is that it can trap air inside of an area. Without air, there would be no sound. The batt insulation is so thick and dense that sound can’t pass through. This helps quite a bit with airborne noise in particular, and impact noise also is handled pretty well.
Since insulation is hidden from people who live in the home or building, this is going to last a long time. Just make sure to invest in the right type of insulation at the beginning so that it is not going to break down over time.
Best Soundproofing Insulation For Homes and Businesses?
Not all batt insulation is created equally. Some people find that out the hard way, but there are enough reviews out there now to get an idea on which brands are the most trustworthy.
All these options below are great for those looking for the right type of solution for their needs. They vary in price a little bit, so pay attention to see how much it might be to get a certain set up.
Most of the companies also have a few options to choose from, so go off of price, noise reduction coefficient, general fit to the wall cavity, and more.
There are quite a few people who have relied on Owens Corning 703 insulation as a great option for a home or business. It is a very versatile option that can be purchased at an affordable price. The density might be a little light for some, but it has an outstanding noise reduction coefficient. On top of all that, it also does a great job doing other insulation things, which certainly helps.
With a few different thickness options, people can fill a cavity with relative ease. Some people might be a little afraid that they are not getting the full table coverage if they skimped on with. If the cavity is pretty spacious, go for something as thick as possible. Some people even install two sheets together to help with the insulation.
Some of the products offered by Owens Corning also have foil on one side. If the foil is facing a certain direction, it helps with the blocking process as well. Foil help specifically for those higher frequencies, as the fiberglass in the insulation is more for the lower frequencies.
They are a very trusted company online, and they have products that will last a long time. People should not be too worried about investing in the company and having as many walls as possible filled with their insulation.
Most people who have done any type of research when it comes to insulation probably already knows about Roxul. They have many different options for people who are in need, and they have started to put out some insulation that is specific for acoustic needs.
One such option is the Rockwool Safe and Sound acoustic mineral insulation (Home Depot). This is a mineral wool option that has outstanding density for the ultimate protection. Its density is measured at 8 pounds per cubic foot, which means that a room will stay climate controlled and very quiet.
The high-end insulation options from Roxul are all definitely great, but they are also expensive. Some people might not notice much of a difference between the density of 8 pounds, and the density of 6 pounds. If that is the case, going with a slightly cheaper version makes some sense. This is especially true if the same type of insulation is going to be used for a lot of area, as the price starts to add up.
Thickness options are also there, which makes life so much easier. All in all, Roxul has shown that they are a very dependable company when it comes to insulation. They continue to cater to different types of needs out there, which is very exciting for those who do not want to settle.
The first two options are companies that have a lot of history when it comes to insulation, but the third one is more about soundproofing in general.
ATS Acoustics has some outstanding foam panels that have been used by people all over the world when it comes to soundproofing. The problem is, acoustic panels only on the outside of the wall make sense, but taking care of the inside is important as well.
They probably do the best job when it comes to providing a fiberglass insulation option for those who need it. It scores very well for acoustic purposes, but it is surprisingly good at being an excellent insulation option as well.
Some people might be hesitant at first that it is designed only for sound, and nothing else. They have shown that they can’t compete with some of the biggest names out there and not be too worried.
This is another company that does a very good job of inviting insulation options that help with soundproofing. They are fourth and final on this list only because they do not seem to have as much of a focus on helping with sound as the others.
There is a lot like about this insulation, as most of their options do a great job helping with everything else. It is not that they are terrible at soundproofing, they just do not seem to stress it as much as the others.
They do have some very affordable options, and might be sufficient enough for people who already have acoustic foam and other options on the outside of the walls.
Some people do not need the very best of the best when it comes to soundproofing insulation, so they might opt for this instead. For climate issues inside, it is also hard to argue with anybody who decides to go with this option.
Batt Insulation Installation Process
Once the proper batt insulation is purchased, the next step is actually installing it so that the house has plenty of sound control. There are always going to be some people out there who are not going to touch doing the installation process, but others want to tackle things on their own.
Fortunately, this is good news for people who are do-it-yourselfers. It is a pretty straightforward process, and there are a few opportunities to mess things up. It might take a little longer than hiring a professional, but some people feel like it is worth doing everything on their own.
For the do-it-yourselfers, the first step is preparing the room the same way everything is prepared when painting. That means moving the furniture out of the way, giving plenty of open workspace, and setting things up as efficiently as possible. Having anything in the way is just going to complicate the process.
Once space is available, measuring to fill the cavity as tightly as possible is essential. If there is some open space in the cavity, it is not going to be nearly as efficient. It might seem like packing up the cavity as much as possible with soundproofing material, but it takes proper planning to set everything up.
The insulation usually comes in a set form, so there will be some cutting needed. Make sure to take the time to cut everything properly so that it lines up the way it should. If everything is accurately measured and cut, actually putting insulation into the cavity is going to be a straightforward as possible.
Remember that working with insulation is a little different than other materials, and it can even cause some breathing problems in some people. The fiberglass especially is something that causes people issues. Instead of having to deal with that, look at having the right type of protection before going through any steps of the process.
Other ways with soundproofing inside the wall cavity?
The insulation is a great first step to soundproofing an area. There is an opportunity to do even more by adding some bonuses to the mix. One of the easiest ways is to add a layer of Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV) by putting it over the insulation. This becomes a little costly, so some might go with acoustic caulk instead.
Resilient channels are also great for soundproofing, as they are fairly easy to work with as a do it yourself often as well. Not everyone can try different things, but all of these are built-in soundproofing options anyway.
The truth of the matter is, if there is a will, there is a way. People can figure out ways to soundproof a room in particular if they want to. The insulation just makes it a little less complicated. By having a great base, it makes every other step the process that much easier.
A Final Look at Insulation for Soundproofing
It just makes sense to fill any type of cavity between two walls with something that can help in multiple ways. Anyone who is trying to take soundproofing to the next level should look specifically for insulation to help with that.
In reality, anything is better than nothing if the cavity is currently empty. Getting a quality option with that insulation just makes sense. It is a process to get everything installed, so there is no need to do it twice or even three times by trying to cut corners in the beginning.
There are always going to be some people who feel like they can’t do this on their own, but it is an option worth exploring. Soundproofing a room can be very satisfying for people once they finally get everything done. It provides a great spot for people to either relax, record, or just a joy the building and the way it sounds in general.