Soundproofing is a complicated process that a lot of people don’t quite understand until they take on a project of their own. One of the most complicated parts of the process is going through and fully understanding decoupling.
The goal of decoupling is to reduce vibrations as much as possible between the existing construction, and new construction. To help with decoupling, people use sound isolation clips and resilient channels. They both provide value, but is there an ultimate option for people to count on? Let’s take a closer look at the two options to help with the coupling, and figure out which is best.
Sound Isolation Clips
The goal of sound isolation clips is to insulate the wall studs as much as possible. These clips are attached to wall studs and then used to help out with screwing into drywall.
Sound isolation clips do not conduct sound, as they usually consist of some type of rubber. This helps with the isolation of sound significantly, and many swear by them as the most consistent option.
Resilient channels have been around for a little longer, and some people have counted on them for decades. These happen by installing a channel that is perpendicular to the studs on the wall and drywall.
The goal is to form a T-shape, and then install the other layer of drywall after that. This makes drywall not come in contact with the studs, isolating the sound quite a bit.
Comparing The Two Options
Even though both methods are different, they both strive to help out quite a bit with soundproofing. They both help with the coupling quite a bit, but is there one option that is better than the other?
For people who are looking at the overall expense, resilient channels are the way to go. They are very inexpensive for nearly any type of set up, and most people try them out first because of that.
The downfall of resilient channels is that installing them is a little trickier than some people realize. If the installation process does not go exactly as it should, the resilient channels are going to make an impact. That is why some people will either shy away from using resilient channels, or they will spend extra money on having someone professionally install everything.
Professional installation certainly has benefits, but it eats into the savings that some people are really looking forward to. It does make sense though, because not only are resilient channels sometimes tough to install properly, but there is not the same type of uniform standards from a manufacturing perspective like there is with sound isolation clips.
That is not to say that sound isolation clips aren’t a little challenging to install as well. It does take some technical knowledge to take care of everything, but the process is usually a bit more straightforward. This is good news for people who want to take care of everything themselves instead of relying on a professional to help out.
Quite a few studies have shown that sound isolation clips do a better job with insulation than resilient channels. A lot of that comes down to a lower residence point that they can rely on. Once the frequency of sounds gets a little low, it is tougher to hear sounds that might be distracting without any soundproofing going on.
Of course, for better soundproofing, it does cost a decent amount of money to invest in sound isolation clips. Anyone who is looking for professional levels of soundproofing feels like it is worth the investment. Still, people not worried about having the best might not consider the investment worth it.
How to Maximize Effectiveness
Sound isolation clips and resilient channels both help with soundproofing, but they can’t take care of everything themselves. To maximize the effectiveness of both, there are some other tips to keep in mind.
The first thing to always be aware of is making sure there is enough mass added to the walls. It is a pretty simple concept, but a heavier wall is going to provide better soundproofing. That is why people try to add thicker layers of drywall when they are working on construction.
While adding a lot of mass helps, there comes the point where people don’t want to add so much that it is taking up a good amount of space. Soundproofing really works best when substantial, dense mass fits without shrinking the walls too much.
Counting on Good Damping Options
A significant key to soundproofing involves using a suitable damping compound. The goal of a damping compound is to reduce significantly the amount of sound transmitted by converting standard sound energy into heat.
Green Glue is just one standard option in this category. Damping works very well in conjunction with sound isolation clips and resilient channels. The beauty of Green Glue is that it is applicable in so many different ways.
Maximizing the Effectiveness of the Air Chamber
Every single person who is decoupling a wall is looking to build an air chamber that helps with soundproofing. There is a balancing act of making sure the walls are not too thick, but also maximizing the size of the air chamber.
This is where everything gets a little complicated, so make sure to take the time to understand better how to maximize the effectiveness of the air chamber, how to use decoupling properly, and more.
Why Sound Isolation Clips and Resilient Channels Help With Decoupling
In order to get the most out of decoupling, people are always looking for extra benefits. It might seem like a challenge at first, but decoupling pays off hugely if done well.
Some people will take on a project and feel like they have everything under control themselves. Others will hire a professional to help out with the process, and that usually goes a lot more smoothly.
The simplest way to describe decoupling is that the goal is to build a room within a room. That means creating two separate stud walls and then eventually connecting them. It is very useful from a soundproofing perspective, but it does take up significantly more space. If the room is already small, shrinking it a bit by adding a room within a room might not be the way to go.
To save space with construction, some people will go with staggered stud walls instead of double walls. This can reduce the amount of space taken up by more than 50%.
The soundproofing might not be at the highest level possible, but most people are willing to make that sacrifice if they need the extra space. Unless the room needs the ultimate amount of soundproofing possible, the difference will not be noticeable.
How do sound isolation clips and resilient channels come into the picture? During decoupling, adding either one of these devices to a wall will act a lot like a mount. By using either one of these options as a mount, sound is absorbed and no longer can travel through the wall.
If the entire set up is done properly, it can completely eliminate sounds heard. In other cases, it will significantly make an impact, but not to the completely quiet point.
Why Picking One Option Ultimately Matters
Soundproofing is a pretty long process to get just right. People are always looking for methods that work in the right ways, and sometimes, it comes down to trial and air.
Sound isolation clips and resilient channels are both going to provide some value for people when they are looking to make an area a little more tolerable. Ignoring the opportunity to use either of these options is only going to limit just how much sound is eliminated in a room.
Make sure to price both options before making the ultimate decision. If people have the money for sound isolation clips, they are probably going to provide better value in the long run. Just do not make a project more expensive than it needs to be by heavily investing in sound isolation clips over resilient channels.