When sound transmission is an issue, the specification and installation of tile flooring systems is often a complex task. The process can now be simplified, however, with an innovative new sound reduction matting system.

Two central issues surrounding sound control in multi-level buildings are the construction height of the finished floor and the level of sound reduction achieved. While several products, such as honeycomb boards and nylon matrix systems, offer satisfactory sound reduction, their use imposes on the designed space with increased construction heights. To alleviate this problem, Custom® Building Products of Seal Beach, Calif. has introduced SoundGard Sound Reduction Mat Underlayment.

Available in 2.5 mm and 6 mm thicknesses, SoundGard is thinner than alternative sound control products. As a result, construction heights of the finished floor systems are lower, eliminating the added expense and labor involved with ramped thresholds, extended doorjambs and taller cabinets.

Made from recycled tire rubber and certified by the U.S. Green Building Council under the LEED program, SoundGard has been successfully incorporated into a wide variety of flooring systems. Impressive impact sound reduction and acoustical control have been achieved with ceramic tile, marble, brick, hardwood, laminate, vinyl and carpet.

Despite its thin profile, SoundGard meets or exceeds building code standards throughout North America over concrete and wood joist constructions. Independent third-party testing (ASTM E989 and ASTM E2179) revealed that 6 mm SoundGard mats raise the Impact Insulation Class (IIC) of a 20 cm (8 in.) concrete slab from IIC 35 to IIC 55. The 2.5 mm SoundGard mat increases the same concrete slab to IIC 50. In the field, 6 mm SoundGard reached IIC 56 (ASTM E1007). SoundGard is also manufactured to customized thicknesses upon request to meet specific IIC requirements.

While SoundGard mats are lightweight-the thinner mat weighs 1.7kg/sq.m. (0.35 lbs/sq. ft.) and the 6 mm weighs 4.4kg/sq.m. (0.9 lbs/sq.ft.)-they are strong and resilient. Both mat thicknesses offer a minimum tensile strength of 7kg/cm (100 PSI) (ASTM D412) and minimum tear strength of 18.14 kg (40 lbs/in.) (ASTM D624). When 6mm SoundGard was compression tested, under 25% constant deflection (ASTM D395) or 1.5mm, resulted in a maximum compression set of 0.6mm or 10% of he original value.

SoundGard is offered as an affordable and easily installed single-ply, direct-bond system. Roll sizes of 22.9 m (75 ft) for the 2.5mm mat and 9.1 m (30 ft.) for the 6mm mat, each at 1.2 m (4 ft) wide, allow for easy handling and straightforward measurement and installation. SoundGard flooring systems are covered for up to six years when installed according the Custom Building Products specifications.

SoundGard Sound Reduction Mat Underlayment can be a simpler option when developing specifications for sound reduction and acoustic control in multi-level homes and buildings. It is a thin, durable solution that is easy to install and proven to be effective, both in the laboratory and in the field.

Custom Building Products is a respected leader in the tile and stone installation industry with trusted products like the WonderBoard® backerboard, the most widely used backerboard in the world, and the company has a complete understanding of the construction process. For more information about the company and its products, please call (800) 272-8786 or visit the company's web site at