Multi-Family Soundproofing

soundproofing for luxury multifamily

In many parts of the country where acoustic tests are not mandated prior to completion, there has been a growing number of class-action suits and corresponding renovations to multi-family developments. Often, one of the most straight-forward mitigations developers and architects can make is adding a flooring underlayment to reduce structure-borne noise in units above; mainly, footfall.

We recently treated a facility in Austin, TX that experienced superior IIC and STC ratings in their Open Web Truss flooring system by implementing the Floor Blokker membrane beneath the hardwood floors. After installed, an independent acoustical consulting firm, BAI, performed fields tests and found an ASTC of 58 and AIIC of 52. The corresponding lab test values are 63 and 57, respectively.

75,000 square feet of Floor Blokker was installed at less than $1/sq ft and this luxury apartment complex was able to completely eliminate noise complaints and reduce long-term tenant turnover.

multifamily soundproofing

Common Wall STC Values

Commercial Acoustics Determine Target STC

When designing or building a wall partition, it’s critical to understand what benefits you’ll get out of the wall assembly, and the associated costs and complications that come with more complex assemblies. The first step is to determine target STCs – how much sound do you need your wall to block? This is often dependent on the use-case of the room, and the expectations of the tenants. Just as walls in a doctor’s office may vary with those of a daycare, you’ll also have different expectations at an affordable housing development than a high-end luxury condominium.

There are numerous tools across the internet to calculate the STC of your wall design. Be sure to compare apples-to-apples, since some products may advertise an STC, but change the underlying wall assembly.

Below is a list of STC values for common partitions and assemblies, along with their estimated speech privacy and ideal applications in the real world. By utilizing soundproofing membranes and other material on the market, you can achieve these STCs at prices that weren’t previously possible with conventional construction methods.

soundproofing walls stc values