12th July 2017

The importance of Acoustics in today’s busy family home

Today’s average family home can often be a rather loud environment – something which housebuilders should consider when designing and specifying for residential properties.


Building insulation is often viewed as solely impacting the thermal integrity of a property. However, high performing products – such as Isover’s glass mineral wool solutions – also play a vital role in terms of boosting acoustic performance.

In new properties, this is crucial, not only to just meet the requirements of UK Building Regulations (England and Wales – Part E 2003 & Scotland – Section 5), but also to protect occupants from the effects of noise disturbance.

Excess levels of noise can have a significant and detrimental effect on overall comfort levels. In fact, according to a 2016 Saint-Gobain study, unwanted noise is in the top-ten list of residential concerns when it comes to health and wellbeing in properties. In addition, the Government’s most recent National Noise Attitude Survey suggests that almost half (48 per cent) of people feel their home life is spoilt to some extent by noise. This isn’t surprising as a person’s concentration, productivity, mental and physical health
can all be affected by sound.

In the last decade, the number of British people choosing to work from home has risen by a fifth, reaching a record 1.5 million. With this in mind, sound control is becoming increasingly important to home owners and a building’s level of noise transference is often used as a measure of quality.

Building for comfort

Today, the living room is no longer the only prevalent location of noise in the modern home. Surround-sound systems, voice-controlled speakers and noisy pets in other rooms can all contribute to higher levels of sound transference between floors and through walls. So, how can housebuilders ensure multi-generational families living in residential environments maintain their modern lifestyles without disturbing people in other rooms or vice versa?

Isover’s range of specialist mineral wool acoustic insulation is manufactured to be at the optimum density for effectively dampening sound and reducing its transfer between walls and floors. It is also available in thicknesses and widths which are appropriate for residential applications, ensuring effective performance and easier to install solutions.

Isover’s Acoustic Partition Roll (APR) plays a major role in reducing the transmission of airborne sound from one room to another and features in internal walls systems that offer acoustic performance up to 70dB (Rw). When used between a property’s joists, the product will also significantly dampen noise transference between floors, ensuring comfort for occupants on different levels.

For separating walls, RD Party Wall Roll (masonry) and Timber Party Wall Roll/Timber Frame Batt (timber frame) are designed to reduce the transmission of airborne sound between connected properties, whilst contributing to effective thermal and fire separation.

Futureproofing buildings

Making the right decisions about acoustic insulation during the early stages of a development eliminates the need for costly retrofits and is an effective method of futureproofing a building.

Isover’s acoustic solutions are also covered by British Gypsum SpecSure® Warranty when used as a part of British Gypsum drywall. This means housebuilders can have peace of mind, knowing that the insulation installed in a residential development has lifetime performance guaranteed.

The ambitious Government housebuilding targets will undoubtedly mean the next five years will be very demanding on the sector. However, by making use of the most effective acoustic insulation products, housebuilders can ensure these buildings contribute positively to the health, wellbeing and enjoyment of millions of UK residents.

For more information about Isover’s acoustic product range, get in touch with your local Technical Advice Centre by calling 0800 032 2555.