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Soundproofing Using Drywall, Does it Work?

If you live in a noisy neighborhood or keep on getting complaints from neighbors about your noise, soundproofing is definitely something you have considered. There are so many methods you can use to soundproof your home. One of the best options is that of using soundproofing drywall products.

You will be spoilt for choice when searching for the right soundproofing drywall brand to use. One that comes highly recommended is the QuietRock drywall. Building experts claim that using QuietRock drywall can give soundproofing qualities that are equivalent to 8 layers of standard drywall. This is definitely a product you should ask for from your drywall supplier Toronto.

Composition of soundproofing drywall

Traditional drywall panels are made of layers of rigid mineral gypsum which are sandwiched between paper layers. As a result, they are great conductors of sound. Soundproofing drywall, on the other hand, uses an inner layer that is made up of gypsum, ceramics and viscoelastic. These materials make the drywall more robust and it significantly reduces sound transmission.

QuietRock product

This product was introduced back in 2002 by PABCO Corporation. The current DIY product comes in 8, 9, 10 and 12 foot long panels. It can be cut and be installed in the same way as traditional drywall. The drywall products rely on a 3 layer design in which two layers are gypsum drywall that is sandwiched around viscoelastic sound-absorbing polymers. The gypsum layer is approximately ¼ inch thick.

Evaluating soundproofing drywall

Drywall panels, both for conventional and soundproofing, are rated for STC (Sound Transmission Class). The higher the STC rating is the better the soundproofing. You should, however, note that STC rating is for a whole wall construction including surface panels and not for a single drywall panel. This translates to insulation, framing studs and 2 layers of soundproofing wallboard. Even though soundproofing drywall panels are great in sound dampening, you will not get their true benefits until they are integrated into your complete wall system.

Being one of the best soundproofing drywall, QuietRock has a much higher STC rating. When installed properly, standard drywall has an STC rating of 34 whereas at the same thickness QuietRock has an STC rating of 52.

Multiple layers of standard drywall

Thanks to the high STC rating, QuietRock and other soundproofing drywalls can be used as a single layer to provide the same level of soundproofing as 8 layers of standard drywall. But does this mean using multiple layers of standard drywall will offer the desired level of soundproofing? Theoretically, the answer is yes. The problem is that the walls will be too thick leading to the following problems:

  • Higher labor costs
  • Lost floor space
  • Increased weight on the ceiling and walls
  • Higher ancillary materials costs
  • Receptacles that have to be bumped out

All things considered, it will not be practical to use multiple drywall layers to achieve soundproofing. This is despite the fact that at the current cost of one QuietRock sheet you can buy 7 sheets of standard drywall. You should thus contact your drywall supplier Toronto for soundproofing drywall instead. If soundproofing is not a priority, go for standard drywall.