sound insulation testing guide

the no.1 resource for passing the Building Regulations requirements



home > help! I failed a test; what should I do?

First of all, don't panic... There are many possible reasons for "failing" a sound test, ranging from the builder simply not being aware of the current requirements to a simple mistake during the design of construction phase.

The first step you should take is to compare your construction to the guidance provided on this website regarding wall of floor acoustic insulation. Once you have done this you will probably face one of the following two options:

1. your wall or floor construction seems similar to our guides for passing the tests - in this case, you should,

for wall tests

  • Try and see if there are any gaps at the head or the feet of the wall.
  • Make sure you properly seal them with silicone mastic.
  • If the wall is a cavity masonry wall, make sure that there is no debris/mortar within the cavity.
  • Make sure that any external cavity wall is stopped with a flexible closer at the junction with the separating wall.
  • Stagger the position of sockets on opposite sides of the separating wall.
  • For framed walls, ensure that each layer of plasterboard is independently fixed at the stud frame and that not fixings bridge the two leaves.
  • The junction between the ceiling and the wall lining should be sealed with tape or caulked with sealant.

for floor tests

  • Make sure that you have isolated your ceiling by use of resilient bars.
  • If mineral wool is used as absorption, ensure that it is not tightly packed within the main void of the floor. About ¾ of the void depth with loosely placed mineral wool quilt are sufficient for effective airborne sound insulation in conjunction with other measures.
  • Make sure that a flanking strip is used around the edges of the floor to isolate it from walls and skirtings.
  • Have you used any resilient layer for impact sound insulation?
  • Make sure that the floating floor treatment that you have used for impact sound insulation is not mechanically fixed to the existing floor system by use of nails/screws. Please follow carefully manufacturer’s details.
  • Beams should be properly boxed-in by a plasterboard case along their length. Fire/acoustic insulation such as Corofil should be used to seal any gaps between the web of the beam and the surrounding structure.
  • Any pipes/services should be completely wrapped with insulation. If boxed-in, the- plasteboard box should not come in contact with the pipe or pipe fixings.

2. your wall or floor construction seems too "lightweight" when compared to our guides. In this case, you should seriously consider upgrading your systems to comply with the sound insulation requirements.


Sound Testing