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Soundproofing an Apartment Floor

It’s widely known that apartments are notoriously noisy places to call home. You’d have to put up with yelling kids on the upper floors, arguing neighbors, blaring music systems, wild house parties, infants in distress, and much more. Sometimes you can be doing things that are loud, too, which could be an issue for your neighbors. It’s for this reason that soundproofing is so crucial. You may use it to muffle outside sounds and dampen the tremors caused by activities within your home.

Although there are many advantages to apartment living, one disadvantage is the increased noise pollution that results from being so close to many neighbors. Doors, windows, gaps, and floors may all be soundproofed to prevent noise from traveling between rooms and flats or contained if you’re a music lover. It’s undeniable that soundproofing an apartment is difficult. If you also have the same issue and want to soundproof your apartment floor, you have come to the right place.

Ask Permission First

Before beginning to soundproof your apartment floor, check with your landlord to be sure you have permission. No one wants to break their lease for whatever reason. Your landlord may help you out because doing so can increase the worth of their property. But if not, you should be alright. Make sure you won’t make any changes that will cause you to break the terms of your lease on the unit. Temporary soundproofing measures will be addressed if the landlord does not permit permanent ones. But if you legally own the apartment floor, you may skip this step instead.

Seek Professional Assistance

Close up detail of manual worker hands working with a measuring tape and pencil.

For the right price, you may have your floors professionally soundproofed. They will be able to advise you on the finest method and material for soundproofing your floor. You should only worry about finding a professional and affording their services. The cost of seeking professional help may be significantly more than the cost of purchasing the necessary supplies and completing the work on your own. The process of soundproofing a floor using this method is straightforward.

Basic Soundproofing Techniques

Suppose your landlord has forbidden you from installing a soundproof layer under your flooring. In that case, you should look into simple soundproofing measures that won’t alter the look of your floor and can be removed if necessary. 

One option is to simply place a layer of interlocking floor mats over the floor area you wish to quiet down. Beginning in one corner lay the mats like a giant jigsaw puzzle covering the floor. Even though it’s the simplest and least expensive method of soundproofing, it’s not particularly effective at reducing ambient noise. 

You can also use sound-absorbing rug paddings by placing them below your carpet. It’s a thicker and denser alternative to the standard carpet pads available. They look lovely when used alone, but they really shine when placed beneath your regular carpet. Nail or glue the edges of the paddings to ensure they stay down, then lay your carpet or rug on top.

If nothing else worked, you could also resort to flooring underlayment. The term “flooring underlayment” refers to the thin layer of insulation often installed beneath a carpet or floor mat to increase its soundproofing properties. Hardwood or vinyl flooring is ideal for placing it over. 

More Complex Soundproofing Technique: Installing Deck Screw

Installing deck screws is a more complex approach to soundproofing. You will also want a bit driver, deck screws, a drill, a countersink drill bit, and a pencil. You could always hire a handyman to do it for you if you find it difficult.

First, you’ll want to eliminate your existing carpet, linoleum, tile, or hardwood flooring. The purpose of this process is to reach the area under the floor. You may either do this locally, in the spots where the noise is coming from or take off all the flooring.

Second, determine where the noise is coming from and note it. Make pilot holes at each spot using a drill bit with a countersink sized to accommodate the screws you’ll be using. You need a bit that’s just a little smaller in diameter than the screws.

Then, insert the pointy end of the deck screw into the pilot hole you bored in the subfloor. Apply steady pressure with the bit driver as you work the screw through the sheet and into the framework.

This technique should be repeated until all floors have screws firmly fastened into the pilot holes bored previously. Rather than using nails, drill holes in the joists. By the end of it, the squeaking will have stopped, and the floor will be much more stable.

The Last Resort: Soundproof Flooring

Installing a soundproof floor is the last resort in reducing noise pollution. It helps quiet things down as well. The floor might be tiled, hardwood, laminate wood, linoleum, or carpet.

All of these options reduce ground noise to acceptable levels. Nails may seem like the obvious choice when attaching flooring to the underlayment. Still, the adhesive is the more professional choice and should be used before the final flooring is installed. It helps with noise reduction, and it doesn’t take much to have an effect. It is best to seek professional help for installing soundproof flooring.

Precautions Before Soundproofing

Wear protective gear, including gloves and eyewear, when working with tools like saws, screws, and dampening chemicals.

If you want the full benefits of soundproofing your floors, offer to pay for your downstairs neighbor to do the same. Assuming, of course, that you can reach an arrangement with them to have it installed.

Before making any modifications to the floor, you should definitely visit a flooring or hardware store for advice. Take measurements and pictures of the floor and subfloor with you to the hardware shop so the staff there can assist you in choosing the right equipment, materials, and approach for the job.

Most notably, if you are not the building’s owner, you should not make any alterations to the floor. Before making any alterations to the floor, get the building owner’s approval, as mentioned earlier. As a result, some landlords may insist on hiring experts to complete such tasks before approving them.

The only way to completely hush that annoying background noise is to soundproof the room. You may turn the chore into a pleasant activity by asking for a friend or family’s assistance. Spend as much time as you need gathering the supplies you will need.

Even so, there’s no need to top oneself. If you prefer or the building’s owner needs expert assistance, that’s fine. Seeking help if you start this activity and encounter difficulties is essential. 

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