Sound-proof: Basement Insulation
LESLIE: Jim in Ohio is on the line with a question about insulation. What are you working on?
JIM: I’m looking at remodeling my basement and I’m looking for something with – that’s going to help insulate it plus soud-proof the basement.
TOM: So, a couple of things. First of all, do you want to insulate the foundation walls or do you just want to insulate the basement ceiling?
JIM: Actually, both.
TOM: So there’s a foil-encapsulated fiberglass-batt insulation that’s designed specifically for basement walls. The foil has a water resistance to it, so it stands up to the moist, damp areas. So that’s something that you could do there.
JIM: OK. Great.
TOM: In terms of the insulation, you could use standard fiberglass insulation. But contrary to popular belief, fiberglass insulation by itself is not a material that’s going to be sound-proof. If you want to block sound, you probably should use a sound-resistant drywall. There are different types of drywall products. I think one’s called QuietRock.
There are others that once you apply it to the ceiling – you apply it like normal drywall but it’s a lot heavier and it has sort of a sound-proof batten structure to it. It’s also much more expensive. But you can special-order it at a home center and use that on the ceiling and that will make it quieter.
But the devil is in the details when it comes to quiet construction. And wherever you have a ceiling fixture or light fixtures or any kinds of perforations in that ceiling, they have to packed, also, with a soundproofing material, which kind of looks like a clay that sort of fits behind it. But if you just want to try to do the best you can without going to that level of detail, then maybe just apply the sound-resistant drywall and it’ll be probably the quietest basement on the block.
JIM: Great. Thank you. That works.