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Sound Proofing in Victorian Terrace

(9 Posts)
BalaBot Wed 04-Jan-17 21:18:57

Looking for any good suggestions on how to minimise the sound of our waking children with our neighbour.

We are both in small Victorian terraces, and bedrooms are on the adjoining wall with one neighbour who is able to hear our child (DS with SN) and the noises he makes when he wakes early. Moving him to a different room hasn't helped as still in an adjoining wall.

Anyone got any good ideas on affordable ways to reduce the travelling noise. Our house is floorboards throughout and there are chimney breasts in each of the adjoining rooms.

Our neighbour is very kind about the noise but I hate knowing she is being constantly woken. Due to DS SN we can't explain to him that he has to be quiet when he wakes. I also don't want to have to get him up as soon as he wakes as often 0500 and he is quite happy staying in bed just won't do it quietly.

We will eventually move but looking for ideas to make life more comfortable whilst we are here.

herewecomeawassailing Wed 04-Jan-17 21:25:09

Bumping and following!

PigletJohn Wed 04-Jan-17 22:05:18

A continuous row of built-in wardrobes or cupboards with solid closing doors will help a lot. If the wardrobes are filled with clothes or bookshelves that will improve it. They need not be very deep, but have to go floor to ceiling. A foot-deep cupboard can take clothes on hangers facing out, not sideways. The frames should be fixed to floor and ceiling, not the wall.

Take up the floorboards against the party wall. As well as unbelievable dust and dirt, you will see that the brickwork is very shoddy, and where it has not been plastered, and around the joists, you will see gaps. Poke mortar in to fill them, or expanding foam (I'd use the pink Fire Foam which one day may be useful). Then pack the space between the joists tightly with dense mineral wool batts which you can get from a builders merchant. It is like loft insulation but heavier and less airy. It muffles airbourne noise. Do the same with the wall above the ceiling in the loft. If you can, take off the skirting and you will find more gappy brickwork behind it.

if the fireplace is open, block it up with something heavy and solid. The brickwork between adjoining fireplaces and chimneys in terraced houses is very thin, and probably cracked.

PigletJohn Wed 04-Jan-17 22:07:53

btw you mention bare floorboards.

Carpet is much better for muffling noise. If there is an allergy problem, fibreboard underlay and vinyl cushionfloor is very hygienic and easy to clean

Findmeinthekitchenatparties Thu 05-Jan-17 07:10:34

I have this problem too. Mid terrace, so noise from both sides as well as from our DC.

We need to decorate which will include plastering and removing laminate so will have no problem with PigletJohn's suggestions but, can we use soundproof plasterboard too? We are unable to have built in wardrobes and as the rooms are small can't build a cavity wall so I guess I want to know if the plasterboard will help too?

Also, what do we block the chimney with?

Mcnorton Thu 05-Jan-17 07:19:52

We live in a similar property and because it's so small, the walls and alcoves are crammed with stuff (wardrobes, bookshelves etc). Yet noise from students next door is quite loud. At night when traffic noise reduces (we're on a busy road) you can neighbours yawning! The sound seems to travel through the chimneys so even if they're downstairs it funnels into our bedrooms upstairs hmm

Millionprammiles Thu 05-Jan-17 10:46:51

We've had two kinds of soundproofing installed in our 1920s Edwardian property - a 'false wall' downstairs (which is the most effective and only reduced the room width by 5cm) and soundproofing panels upstairs (due to chimney breasts, the walls aren't at right angles so a false wall couldn't be installed - less effective but still significantly muffles sound).

I'd recommend a specific soundproofing company rather than using a general builder.
Neither option was cheap and I second PigletJohn's suggestions.
For max results your neighbour should also soundproof their adjoining wall...

BalaBot Thu 12-Jan-17 09:48:59

Some really useful information here thank you.

Apologies I disappeared but DS been unwell and off school for a week. Interestingly apologised to neighbour as he's been awake crying a lot at night and she said she hadn't heard him!

In an attempt to keep costs down think will consider carpeting those bedrooms and putting sound board on the wall. Someone please shout at me if this is just a false economy and really won't make any difference. I'd consider building cupboards in the alcove bit the worst one is by a window so wouldn't have enough depth.

shazkiwi Thu 12-Jan-17 20:23:18

I came across this stuff when I was searching online for wallpaper - might be worth considering

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