While Mass Loaded Vinyl has been a dependable and competitive product to improve STC in industrial settings for decades, there has been little improvement in the product itself in recent years. As we’ve discussed before, Mass Loaded Vinyl is a PVC-based product that adds a cheap filler, usually Calcium Carbonate or Barium Sulfate, to provide superior sound ratings. The initial versions of MLV included Lead as well but was replaced over the years due to health concerns.
The focus on product development has been on how to make the product cheaper, and thus more applicable to residential and commercial settings. This has led to a number of improvements in manufacturing and a search for cheaper filler alternatives.
However, the PVC-base of the product has not changed – until recently. After several years of product development, followed by 18 months of fire and acoustical testing, Commercial Acoustics has developed an EVA-based Mass Loaded Vinyl soundproofing membrane that has improved the performance without sacrificing cost competitiveness.
One major difference is that PVC is a naturally rigid material (think exterior panels for housing or fences). In order to make it flexible, you need to add a softening agent, known as a “plasticizer”. The downside of this is 1) added cost, and 2) the plasticizer migrates out of the product over time, causing the PVC to become brittle. This is why older plastic toys break easily if left outside for a few weeks.
While Wall Blokker is equally heavy as other types of Mass Loaded Vinyl, the improved flexibility also improves the sound-blocking capacity, on both Wood and Metal stud walls.
Regardless of your needs, Commercial Acoustics has years of experience installing Mass Loaded Vinyl and Wall Blokker products, to offer our a clients a full range of solutions for their unique problems.