Proper acoustical management is essential in both residential and commercial buildings. Unwanted noise from external sources such as construction sites, nearby highways and the general neighbourhood can limit peace and diminish comfort. The sounds will also affect the ability to communicate efficiently and even lower awareness and safety in the interior spaces. In addition, high noise levels can destroy hearing and increase tension in the body. There are diverse types of soundproofing products in the market to suit different requirements and budgets, and acoustical consultants can help you determine how much soundproofing might be needed. One of the popular choices for standard buildings is the batt insulation. This type of product is made from thin fibres which are spun and woven to create a thick layer with sound abatement qualities. Here is a short description of common materials used to form these insulation batts.
Glass wool insulation batts are made from fibreglass. The thin fibrous materials are held together with binding agents which gives the batts strength and resilience. This material is most commonly used for thermal insulation because it can trap air which prevents conduction of heat. However, the products are also important in acoustical management. They have relatively good sound attenuation properties particularly when the batts are installed in walls. Unfortunately, standard glass wool batts have low density so this type is not your best choice for high-performance soundproofing. You should look for high-rated batts to achieve acceptable levels of acoustic attenuation.
Natural wool from sheep provides a unique and safe solution for mitigating the effects of external noise. The batts are manufactured by bonding the fibrous wool with polyester adhesives. This choice is sustainable and relatively environmentally-friendly. The natural fibres do not damage the skin or cause irritation to the eyes like the glass wool alternative. These wool batts are great acoustic insulators since the density of the material is high. However, you should note that the effectiveness of this measure will rely on the thickness of your installed product.
Rock wool, which is also known as mineral wool, is manufactured from materials such as basalt or slags produced during iron processing. The acoustic insulation products are normally purchased as batts, but you can also acquire rolls or blankets. The material is ideal for light soundproofing especially in residential areas with low-range noise levels. You can install the batts in the wall cavities to mute most of the general sounds. You should note rock wool batts release minute fibres which can cause respiratory issues and skin irritation so hire a professional for installation.