Acoustic comfort

When it comes to noise reduction in your new home, the first step is to think about what your home will be used for:

  • Will you have a playroom for kids?
  • Does anyone need space to practice an instrument?
  • Are you having a home cinema installed?
  • Do you read in the evenings while your other half watches films in another room?

A noisy home environment can have a serious effect on your health and wellbeing, so good sound insulation is key. For more information, click here: https://multicomfort.saint-gobain.co.uk/how-important-is-acoustic-comfort-at-home

What are the regulations?

Part E of the building regulations applies to all residential properties and aims to reduce noise transmission between neighbouring homes, as well as between internal spaces.

To comply with Part E of the building regulations, residential buildings must use sound insulation systems.

Most building professionals believe the regulatory standard for sound insulation is low and advise self-builders not to settle for the bare minimum. You can find out more about the regulations here: www.gov.uk/government/publications/resistance-to-sound-approved-document-e

Toy house

What sound insulation techniques are there?

There are three methods of reducing sound transmission in the home.

  1. Add layers which naturally absorb sound better. Carpets are one of the most effective but there are also different types of underlay that can be laid between the chipboard and floor cover. Some underlay is designed to reduce sound transmission.In some spaces, acoustic ceiling and wall panels can help to create the best possible acoustics. New product innovations mean there are now a range of shapes, colours and styles to choose from.
  2. Provide separated layers producing a sound-dampening air gap. One technique is to fix resilient bars to the underside of the joists (a length of timber or steel supporting part of the structure of a building). You then fix the plasterboard to the bars, creating a sound-insulating void.
  3. Design the home so that noisy rooms are as far from the other rooms as possible. For example, you can put noisy appliances in a sound-dampened utility room if you have the space. Also, be sure to look for appliances with low noise ratings.

    Acoustic flooring and external noises

    Acoustic flooring is designed to improve upon the acoustic performance of a traditional timber floor. This innovation combines timber I-beams with an anhydrite (a mineral that has acoustic insulation properties) screed covering.

    Most noise comes in through 'weak links' in the exterior such as the doors, windows and roof. You can find out about the acoustic properties of doors and windows from your supplier.

    A hall or lobby behind the front door can help ensure external noise does not directly disturb other rooms in the home.

    Flooring in living room
    Ecophon solo acoustic ceiling panel
    Ecophon Logo

    Sound absorbing panels for quieter rooms

    A complement to acoustic ceilings, Ecophon Akusto solves acoustic challenges whilst also providing opportunities to follow current trends in design and installation. An array of colours and different textured finishes ensure that Akusto is suitable for a range of uses. 

    Akusto wall panels by Ecophon

    Isover insulation
    Isover Logo

    Insulation designed to dampen sound

    Isover Acoustic Partition Roll provides high levels of acoustic insulation in partitions, walls and floors. The easy to install rolls are part of a system lifetime performance guarantee when used in British Gypsum SpecSure warranted drywall and floor systems. 

    Acoustic Partition Roll Insulation by Isover

    Glass panels
    Saint-Gobain logo

    Laminated glass for noise reduction

    SGG STADIP SILENCE combines two sheets of clear glass bonded together with a totally transparent plastic interlayer. The interlayer absorbs sound and reduces the level transmitted through the glass helping to keep both unwanted noise out, or to keep noise in.

    SGG Stadip Silence by Saint-Gobain Glass

    Did you know?

    Reducing noise and improving room acoustics can be easily achieved. Ecophon, one of the experts in managing building acoustics offer a wide range of solutions that you can consider. Available in different sizes and colours they are even printable to create a striking feature!

    Ecophon's panels can be hung from the ceiling or mounted to the walls and on their website - aptly called 'That sounds better' - they offer easy installation videos and a range of advice on where and how to mount the panels. Our favourite was: mount the panels on adjoining not opposite walls!

    Ecophon panels in room