We tell you what is important for sound insulation and which materials are suitable – also for retrofitting.
Read on for our full guide on soundproofing against outside noise.
How does sound insulation work?
For effective soundproofing, it is important to know what type of sound is causing the noise. This is because there are three different sources:
- Speech, music, or television are airborne sounds. The sound waves are transported through the air. It helps to insulate against this with mass – for example, with airborne sound insulation for the wall.
- If the footsteps of your neighbors can be heard in your apartment, this is an impact sound. It already helps against this to suspend the ceiling.
- The third source is the transmission of sound through solid bodies. This includes, for example, washing machines or the hammering of nails. As a countermeasure, you separate components from each other acoustically.
Sound insulation: These materials are suitable
You can choose from a variety of materials for sound insulation. For walls, insulation wool, polystyrene, or foam boards are particularly suitable. With acoustic foam, you already avoid a variety of noise sources that generate noise by airborne sound. They are mounted on the wall as second formwork. There are special foam seals for doors and windows.
How to quickly implement sound insulation?
For example, so that your washing machine does not transmit structure-borne noise, it is often enough to put an anti-vibration mat under it. It also prevents the washing machine, once properly aligned, from slipping. You can dampen loud cabinet doors with a special Pneumatic Closer for Doors, Damper for Cabinet Doors, or Pads for Drawers. Simply attach these to doors or drawers. You can also use sealing tape to prevent sound from spreading through door slots.
Wrap loud water or heating pipes with glass or rock wool. Sound-insulated windows are usually helpful against disturbing street noise. These are usually triple-glazed. Inexpensive measures are soundproof curtains for your windows or additional insulation on the seals. Floors can already be soundproofed with a carpet. Additional carpet underlays are available for further impact sound insulation.
Subsequent sound insulation
For the wall
You will get better protection if you build an additional wall to the foam insulation. This is called a facing shell. It protects you from the noise of the neighbors, and you can work on the wall as usual. The disadvantage of this option is that you lose some space for additional soundproofing. In addition, the effort is higher. Decouple the new wall from the floor. In this way, it will not transmit structure-borne sound.
An alternative to acoustic foam is a wall unit or bookshelf. Simply place this in front of the wall facing your neighbor. However, do not attach it to the brickwork. Otherwise, the airborne sound can spread as structure-borne sound over the wall and the shelf. This will then be even louder than before.