How to Construct Soundproof Walls Using Gypsum

Written by sharon sweeny
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If you have noisy neighbours or just a noisy neighbourhood, you don't have to move. You can soundproof your walls with a special type of acoustically enhanced gypsum board drywall. These are sold under various brand names--all of which refer to the soundproofing qualities they possess--and are available at home improvement centres everywhere. The amount of soundproofing you can achieve with gypsum drywall board varies according to which of the following installation methods you choose.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

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Things you need

  • Electronic stud finder
  • Fibreglass insulation
  • Soundproofing gypsum board drywall
  • Drywall screws
  • Drywall mud and joint tape

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Install a brand new double wall. Use this method with new construction or remove the drywall from your existing wall down to the wood frame studs. For maximum soundproofing, install fibreglass bat insulation between the wood frame studs. Then install soundproofing gypsum board onto the roughed in studs with dry wall screws. Install another roughed-in 2 x 4 frame wall, covering up the first layer of gypsum. Locate the first layer of studs with an electronic stud finder (follow manufacturer's directions to use correctly). Build the second wall by placing the second layer of studs exactly on top of the first layer of wood frame studs. Place fibreglass insulation between the second set of wood frame studs. Install the final layer of gypsum board over the second layer of studs and attach with drywall screws. Use drywall mud and joint tape to seal the seams between the sheets of gypsum board. This method will reduce the interior space in the room because of the double-wide wall.

  2. 2

    Build a second wall over an existing finished wall. Choose this method if you don't want to remove your existing interior wallboard. Locate the existing wood frame studs using an electronic stud finder by following the manufacturer's directions. Build a second wood frame wall with 2 x 4 lumber placed directly over the existing wood frame studs (which you located with the stud finder). Install fibreglass insulation between the wood frame studs of the new wall. Install gypsum board over the second layer of studs, attaching with drywall screws. Use drywall mud and joint tape to seal the seams between the sheets of gypsum board. The trade-off with this method is that the thicker wall will decrease your existing floor space.

  3. 3

    Install a layer of gypsum board over an existing finished wall. Locate the existing wood frame studs with an electronic stud finder. Install the gypsum board directly over the existing drywall by attaching it to the wood studs with drywall screws. Apply drywall mud and joint tape to seal the seams between the sheets of gypsum board.

  4. 4

    Apply paint or wallpaper. Regardless of which method you used to soundproof, finish the new interior walls with paint or wallpaper.

Tips and warnings

  • This method can also be used to soundproof a ceiling.
  • Locate and be aware of existing electrical wiring. Disconnect the electricity to these wires before demolition or construction. If unsure how to do this, consult with an electrician.

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