Hope you can help/advise on best option. ( we have answered in Blue)
I live in a 1930’s semi detached house and have problems with noisy neighbours, although I don’t believe they mean to be noisy, I feel the party wall itself is rubbish, as I can hear them just talking in the room adjacent, and can understand their words (not muffled).
My living room consists of a fireplace and two alcoves. The sound seems to be coming through both alcoves.
1. Ive been told by have buried sockets in alcove of party wall that is basically reducing my party wall by half, and this would be were sound gets through… Is this true?
No this is an exaggeration. A good rule of thumb is the following . If you left a complete air gap of 1% then the soundproofing would be diminished by 10%. If an air gap was 10% then the soundproofing would be decreased by over 50%. So in your case the buried sockets are reducing the performance possibly a bit. But not by 50%. In reality you probably have a poorly constructed party wall with gaps in the mortar and possibly even bricks missing covered by a superficial layer of plaster work. So don’t worry to much about a couple of buried sockets.
2. Sockets – does this mean upon installation I remove back box and glue to back of sound proof drywall and fill space made in old location?
We would recommend that when you move them forward you fill the gap with a little sand cement mix. ( or with some of the soundstop or SS20 panel if you don’t want to bother with sand cement mix). Some people move the location of the electrics to a side wall or replace with a surface mounted socket. Again with a couple of sockets you should be OK.
3. When you talk about applying your products to party walls, are you saying that I should remove the original plaster on the wall back to brick?
No the original plaster stays with all our solutions. They are designed to go on in a quick and painless fashion. The plaster should be even and not flaking or cracking
Or can I just install on top on existing plaster? maybe just remove wall paper?
If the paper is peeling then remove if its on very firmly you can leave it.
4. I have a suspended floor, are there any additional considerations to block out sound?
The suspended floor may raise the possibility of sound coming down through the floor and through the party wall and up through the floor. To get around this we recommend stuffing acoustic mineral wool in the void between the joist and wall. This should be to the full depth of the joist. Normally to 100mm blocks on top of each other will fill the void. Ideally the wool should be 400-500mm deep off the wall. Normally a couple of bags will do an average wall.
My alcoves are 101″x44″ x2 alcoves
Using our ready reckoner for soundstop panels or for the SS20 panels you will get a price.
Based on your sizes the the Soundstop panels work out at £320 and the SS20 work out at £ 525. This includes all the materials you need. The price differential does not necessarily reflect a big performance difference ( of nearly twice as much) as we get good results with the Soundstop panels. However the tested performance of the SS20 is higher than soundstop panels and hence it sells at a premium price. We find that soundstop panels perform best in a Victorian party wall situation for reasons we cannot explain!
Can you recommend the best solution for me?
This is based on your budget. Both should provide improvement of over 50% with many sounds disappearing and others being muffled to a tolerable level. The M20 panels perform that bit better
I’m thinking, sound panels of some type then 15mm Soundshield or similar.
I’m stuck between ss20 solution and Soundstop.Losing space isn’t a majar concern 3/4 inches ok.
The choice is yours. See our customer feed back for Soundtop panels if it will help you decide, case studies.
My DIY skills are moderate. Both these solutions are eminently DIYable!
Sound Stop team.