Now, with newer, more efficient technology and a huge boom in construction of multi-level residential and commercial units such as apartments, condominiums and high-rise office buildings, contractors and builders are finally taking notice. They see the clear need for effective sound-reducing barriers and also recognize it as something homebuyers, renters and office tenants now expect.
The increasing popularity of tile flooring has accelerated the demand for a proven acoustic underlay system that reduces sound transmission through sub-floors for tile installations. Leading companies in the flooring-related businesses are now developing effective noise-reduction solutions in a wide range of technologies. It’s important, however, to select a product that bonds efficiently, dries quickly, installs easily and meets all of the relevant codes.
Companies such as Mer-Krete are offering sound-reduction products that have the ability to diminish both airborne noise and impact noise, from TVs and stereos, to human voices, loud appliances, people walking on hard-soled shoes and objects moved or rolled across the floor. Installers are using a wide range of materials, including foam, fiberglass, various types of wood, rubber and even glass.
Floor Underlayment Products, for instance, offers a three-dimensional core of extruded nylon filaments that has the ability to convert and store vibrational energy. Cerazorb, from Impacta, is a synthetic anti-microbial cork underlayment for ceramic tile that is touted for the fact that it will not rot, swell or absorb water. AMI’s Proflex™ MSC90 product consists of a rubberized membrane that reduces noise transmission and also works to eliminate the transmission of cracks from the concrete slab base.
Sound Shield 7000, at just 1/8” thick, is thinner, lighter and stronger than conventional underlays. The 4’ x 3 1/2’ panel sheets eliminate the problem of curled edges and make the product simple to install…even for do-it-yourself enthusiasts. A polyester fabric on both sides of the mat gives it extra adhesive strength.
Today’s business offices and residential structures, particularly those of multi-unit design, should utilize some type of effective sound reduction system. The choices are much more diverse than in the past, yet the concept remains virtually the same…shut off the noise to create an aesthetically-pleasing atmosphere where people can live, work and play without distraction. Responsible companies such as Mer-Krete and others who blend solid engineering, environmentally-friendly technology and a full systems approach provide the kinds of solutions that are music to every installer’s ears.