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Old 03-10-2013, 01:32 AM   #1
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Soundproofing Apartment Ceiling


Hello All,

My current ceiling is like a drum, if you tap it ever so slightly it creates a boom noise that echoes. My biggest issue is the impact noise coming from the neighbors above- I can even hear the footsteps of the cat above me. I need to do something, anything, so I'm thinking of slapping another layer of plain drywall to the existing ceiling with green glue in between the 2. I know it's been discussed over and over- but does anyone have any post-renovation results they could share? I know it's probably the cheapest soundproof option, and perhaps the least effective, but if my ceilings are so bad I can hear a cat walk- anything will help- right?

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Old 03-10-2013, 01:36 AM   #2
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Hello All,

My current ceiling is like a drum, if you tap it ever so slightly it creates a boom noise that echoes. My biggest issue is the impact noise coming from the neighbors above- I can even hear the footsteps of the cat above me. I need to do something, anything, so I'm thinking of slapping another layer of plain drywall to the existing ceiling with green glue in between the 2. I know it's been discussed over and over- but does anyone have any post-renovation results they could share? I know it's probably the cheapest soundproof option, and perhaps the least effective, but if my ceilings are so bad I can hear a cat walk- anything will help- right?
You could have insulation blown in the ceiling.

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Old 03-10-2013, 10:36 AM   #3
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Soundproofing Apartment Ceiling


I've read that insulation has minimal effect on noise, particularly impact noise. The ceiling is clearly hollow based on the sound it makes when I tap it, but since I'm planning on leaving the existing in place, my only option would be blown in insulation and I'm not sure it would be worth the hassle.

On the flip side, I wouldn't have to worry about the appearance of drilling small holes since i plan on adding a layer of drywall anyway.
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:28 PM   #4
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Soundproofing Apartment Ceiling


What is the ceiling now if your going to add drywall? If your going to add drywall anyway look at quiet rock. It is the same as adding 7 layers of drywall.
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Old 03-10-2013, 04:47 PM   #5
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To be honest- I'm not sure, but I assume its just drywall. I heard about quietrock- I wasn't sure if the cost will be worth the difference. Part of that is I'm afraid the entire concept won't make a bit of a difference and the ceiling needs to be displaced. If that's the case, I'd rather tear down drywall at a later date as opposed to expensive quietrock.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:09 PM   #6
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Soundproofing Apartment Ceiling


This may be something to look into http://www.roxul.com/stone+wool/sound-absorbent . Really hard to totally answer your question without knowing what is behind the ceiling.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:17 PM   #7
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Since it is an apartment, there is really nothing you can do, unless you 1) Own the apartment, 2) The Owner will allow you to hire your own licensed contractor to decouple the ceiling, by ripping down the old, then install the new with decoupling clips, a layer of 5/8" OSB, then a layer of 5/8" drywall Green Glued to the OSB, or 3) You just move out and find a better building that was not so cheaply built.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:30 PM   #8
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Thanks for posting. Are you suggesting using their version of drywall instead of quietrock? Do you happen to know if its less expensive than quiet rock?

Regarding the posting from gregzoll- I should've clarified- it is a condo apt that I own. The building was constructed in the late 1800s and then converted to condos in the 70s. I am really trying to avoid tearing down the ceiling. The bass drum effect on the existing ceiling makes me think that green glue will have some sort of sound impact without breaking the bank.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:43 PM   #9
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With out tearing out the ceiling green glue seems like it may be the way to go. I have never used it so I really can't comment on it's effectiveness.
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Old 03-10-2013, 05:56 PM   #10
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Thanks for posting. Are you suggesting using their version of drywall instead of quietrock? Do you happen to know if its less expensive than quiet rock?

Regarding the posting from gregzoll- I should've clarified- it is a condo apt that I own. The building was constructed in the late 1800s and then converted to condos in the 70s. I am really trying to avoid tearing down the ceiling. The bass drum effect on the existing ceiling makes me think that green glue will have some sort of sound impact without breaking the bank.
They most likely suspended the ceiling off of the old, is why you are getting the drum effect. The only way to solve this, is pulling down the ceilings, and do the decoupling, OSB, Green Glue with the drywall/gypsum, other wise you will still have the issue.

There is no other way around it, but pulling down the old ceilings. Even if you blow up insulation in there, there is no way of telling without first inspecting the ceiling area, that there is no knob & tube, now much gap is between the old ceiling and the one they put up when the refurbed the building some time back.
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Old 03-10-2013, 06:07 PM   #11
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On the plus side- my bedroom is only 12ft by 10ft, so whatever I test out on the 1 room it should hopefully be inexpensive. It sounds like i just have drywall screwed directly into joists with an empty air cavity in between my ceiling and my neighbors floor.
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Old 03-10-2013, 09:25 PM   #12
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On the plus side- my bedroom is only 12ft by 10ft, so whatever I test out on the 1 room it should hopefully be inexpensive. It sounds like i just have drywall screwed directly into joists with an empty air cavity in between my ceiling and my neighbors floor.
You you have is a bunch of drywall most likely floating on a grid of 2x4's holding them up there, if your room is only 8 feet high.

Most old places of that age, usually had at least 9 to 10 foot ceilings, on the lower floors, some had 12 foot ceilings. So I bet you have a floating ceiling, not just one where they tore off the plaster & lathe & replaced with gypsum board. Because if they did, it would not sound like a drum.
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Old 03-10-2013, 10:25 PM   #13
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Soundproofing Apartment Ceiling


There is recessed lighting in some rooms, and the ceiling height is the same throughout. The fixtures are recessed about 5inches into the ceiling. Based on that, I'm hoping that there is more than 4 inches of space between my ceiling and whatever's behind it.

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