Excessive noise within a room can be caused by several sources, such as outside traffic, the proximity of other dwellings, the use of noisy household appliances or the presence of people talking or walking noisily. This noise can cause stress and interfere with the ability to concentrate or rest.
Soundproofing a room can significantly reduce the noise level, improving the acoustic well-being of the environment. This can lead to many health benefits, including stress reduction, improved sleep and concentration.
What exactly does soundproofing mean?
Soundproofing a room leads to reducing the amount of sound entering or leaving the room. This is done by adding sound-absorbing materials to the walls, ceiling and floor, or through specialised acoustic panels.
The physical principle behind soundproofing is the reduction of sound transmission through air vibrations (reduction of reverberation, i.e. avoiding the ‘echo effect’).
When a sound source emits sound, air vibrations propagate through the surrounding environment, including the room’s walls, ceiling and floor. These vibrations can then be perceived as sound by those in the room or others nearby.
How soundproofing a room works: the steps
To achieve acoustic well-being in a home or workplace, applying sound-absorbing material to the walls is not enough. Before soundproofing the room, it is important to identify the noise source. This can help determine the most effective sound-absorbing materials and where they should be placed.
The type of room and its intended use may influence the type of soundproofing required. For example, meeting rooms in an office may require more careful soundproofing design than other rooms.
The technicians must then inspect the building, testing the room volume and background noise level to determine how much soundproofing material will be needed to achieve the desired soundproofing.
To do this, soundproofing experts measure reverberation, echo and the perception of noise from outside, check the condition of walls, ceilings and floors, and identify the most suitable soundproofing techniques for the individual case.
To meet any soundproofing requirement there are several techniques.
Typically, adding sound-absorbing materials such as fibreglass or acoustic foam panels to the walls, ceiling and floor can help reduce echo and reverberation effects within the room. These materials can absorb sound waves and prevent them from being reflected on hard surfaces.
However, sometimes you might prefer to use sound-absorbing panels, which are easier to apply and remove and are designed to absorb sound waves effectively.
Along with these measures, other aspects must also be taken into account to achieve the desired results: doors and windows can be the main sources of external noise entering a room, so it is necessary to purchase modern, high-performance windows and doors, or to apply specific sound-absorbing materials around doors and windows to reduce sound transmission further.
Finally, another somewhat more challenging but still effective soundproofing technique is to build sound-proof walls to create an interior space completely separate from the exterior, made of materials such as concrete, stone or plaster.
Sound insulation: how to do it sustainably
There are more than just traditional materials for soundproofing a home or workplace. Modern construction is implementing radical changes in the choice of construction techniques and measures to improve living comfort to embrace a more sustainable approach and reduce the impact of this industry on the environment. After all, the construction industry is among the three most polluting in the world.
Cork is one of the most commonly used materials for soundproofing a room due to its sound-absorbing properties. This natural material consists of a mixture of air cells and rigid cell walls, which makes it an excellent sound absorber.
Cork can absorb sound waves thanks to its porous structure, which dissipates sound energy and reduces its intensity. It can be used to make sound-absorbing panels and added to paints that act as thermal or acoustic insulators.
In addition, cork has other advantageous properties that make it a popular choice for soundproofing, such as moisture resistance and fireproofing. Last, but most interestingly, it is a natural and renewable material. It is made from the bark of a special oak tree, and its treatment for use in construction has no impact on the environment.
No harmful chemicals are used, and no water is wasted. Once exhausted, the cork can be recycled or disposed of environmentally and human-safe.
Final considerations on acoustic insulation of a room
When soundproofing a room, it is also important to consider the aesthetic impact of the intervention on the interior environment. Although the main objective is to reduce noise, soundproofing should not compromise the overall appearance of the home or office.
Many soundproofing options are also aesthetically pleasing, such as coloured or decorated acoustic panels. The soundproofing material could also be applied inside the masonry, making the soundproofing completely invisible. The same applies to floors and ceilings: there are very thin, but also efficient, sound-absorbing panels that can be applied under floors, disappearing completely.
In addition, soundproofing the room may affect ventilation and lighting. If soundproofing reduces the entry of fresh air into a room, installing an additional ventilation system may be necessary. Similarly, if soundproofing covers windows or other sources of natural light, it may be necessary to increase the artificial lighting in the room.
Anyone carrying out soundproofing work must consider all these aspects, so that the convenience and comfort of a home or workplace is not compromised. It is therefore a good idea to avoid do-it-yourself and turn to soundproofing experts.
In conclusion, soundproofing a room can offer many benefits, such as stress reduction, better sleep quality and improved concentration. It is important to assess the source of the noise and the type of room in order to choose the most appropriate soundproofing techniques, such as adding sound-absorbing materials or sealing doors and windows.
Among the materials used for soundproofing, cork is a popular choice due to its sound-absorbing properties, resistance to moisture and fireproofing, as well as being environmentally friendly and sustainable.
We at Diasen are always ready to supply the construction industry with our cork products, which effectively absorb any noise, maintain living comfort, and respect the environment. We also offer efficient cork-based finishes that are acoustically and thermally insulating.
We are experts in using cork in the building sector and are convinced that this material can make a big difference in everyone’s life. Contact us for more information and to discover our products.