Soundproofing Drywall Ceilings
Blocking Airborne Noise
If the primary source of noises above are airborne (voices, television and stereo), there are two very reliable methods of soundproofing your ceiling. We can block airborne noise by combining materials that are hard and heavy (sheetrock, plaster or wood) with materials that are softer and thinner (MLV or Green Glue).
Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV) is a very good option for soundproofing your ceiling. MLV is a thin, flexible, heavy material that comes in rolls. Combining Mass Loaded Vinyl with layers of sheetrock will create a “sandwich” that blocks and absorbs noise waves before they pass through the ceiling. Simply staple MLV over your current ceiling, then add another layer of sheetrock. Finish it off with a coat of paint and your ceiling looks just like it did before!
Green Glue Damping Compound is another good option for soundproofing your existing ceiling. Like Mass Loaded Vinyl, Green Glue will remain flexible and absorb noise rather than transmit it. Green Glue is applied to a new layer of sheetrock in a completely random pattern, then the layer of drywall is screwed over your current ceiling. Finish the installation with paint and you are on your way to less noise and more peace and quiet!
Blocking Footstep Noise
Footstep noise is vibration from above traveling through everything that is hard and nailed together in the floor and ceiling below. Unlike airborne noise, footsteps will not be blocked by combining layers of dissimilar material. We must break the mechanical connection between the floor and ceiling to prevent vibration travel.
Sound Isolation Clips are the most effective ceiling soundproofing solution for blocking footstep and airborne noise from above. Sound isolation clips are attached to the floor joist, then a simple metal channel snaps in and new sheetrock is screwed directly to the channel – not to the floor joist itself. Sound isolation clips include a rubber isolator that prevents direct contact between the screw and the floor above, breaking the mechanical connection and the vibration path for footstep noise. Building a new floated ceiling is the right choice for superb footstep blocking.