Loud music, kids screaming, movie surround sound on full blast and dogs barking have all lead to sour relationships between neighbours. This is why including acoustic layers between floors to minimise the transfer of noise is becoming increasingly common – however, this can create a challenge when installing underfloor heating. So here at Ambiente, we’ve put together a guide on what you need to consider before installing wet underfloor heating with acoustic layers.
Are there different types of acoustic flooring?
Acoustic and soundproofing solutions can take many different forms, although those that are designed to be used within a floor construction are typically a sheet material made from foam or rubber. There are two main types of noise protection, airborne noise which can be music, voice and TV or impact noise which can be footsteps or heavy items dropped on the floor.
Acoustic products will often focus on either airborne or impact noise, however, there are some that can deal with both. Most acoustic floor solutions are suitable for all types of floors and can be installed in new build or renovation scenarios.
Acoustic layers cannot be penetrated.
A key challenge with acoustic layers within a floor construction is that they cannot be penetrated. This is because any form of penetration will create a gap and a connection which sound can travel through, greatly reducing the sound-deadening performance of the acoustic layer.
So, for a screed UFH system we recommend the use of our AmbiCastellated system, as this requires no downward clipping to the insulation layer. Most floating and low-profile UFH systems by nature do not require downward fixing, so work with acoustic layers well.
Acoustic layers can affect the integrity of the floor construction.
Another key factor that needs to be taken into consideration when incorporating acoustic layers, is the effect it can have on the integrity of the floor construction. For example, if a floor construction includes a large acoustic foam layer with low compressional strength, the whole floor structure could be subject to movement, causing the floor finishes to move and even crack. Therefore, when planning the installation you need to consider the compressional strength of the acoustic layer and the effect this will have on the strength of the floor construction and finish.
Will an acoustic layer affect floor build up?
We also need to consider the effect an acoustic layer will have on the overall floor build up. Acoustic layers can come in a variety of thicknesses and you will need to ensure that the overall floor build up of the acoustic layer and the underfloor heating system does not lead to excessive compromise with the floor-ceiling height.
What are Part E Regulations?
Part E regulations cover the performance requirements in England and Wales for sound insulation in dwelling-houses, flats, rooms for residential use and schools. These regulations introduced pre-completion testing for sound insulation as a means of demonstrating compliance, therefore you should consider these regulations when installing underfloor heating with an acoustic layer to ensure compliance, for example, a key element for residential dwellings is separating walls and floors between dwellings and internal partitions within dwellings.
Ambiente underfloor heating systems have been installed and tested with many different acoustic products including rubber, foam and fleece products. We can offer advice on the most suitable acoustic layer for use in conjunction with wet underfloor heating systems.
If you would like more advice on installing underfloor heating with an acoustic layer and which of our underfloor heating systems would be best suited to your requirements, get in touch with Ambiente today by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 01707 649 118.
Did you find this article useful? Check out ‘UFH Pricing – How much does wet underfloor heating cost?’.
This article was written by Robert Tuffin.
Robert is the General Manager at Ambiente and has been working in the underfloor heating industry since 2012.