Resilient Channel Vs. Furring Channel – Key Differences

A resilient channel and a furring or hat channel are both effective for soundproofing. The reason is that they aid in improving a partition’s STC or sound transmission class. Since the two almost have the same function, it is a little harder to tell how they differ. 

Furring channels are a bit stronger than resilient channels due to their double attachment. But the double attachment gives way for sound vibration. Meanwhile, resilient channels are harder to install, especially if you do not have enough knowledge about them.

Resilient Channel Vs. Furring Channel

You must know how resilient channels and furring channels differ. But it is equally important to understand their pros and cons, so you know what to expect when you install them.

Also read:

Explaining the Differences Between Resilient Channel Vs. Furring Channel

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One of the most notable differences between a resilient channel and a furring channel is their appearance. A resilient channel looks like a baseball cap, only that it has a shorter back compared to its front.

You also attach it to the framing using a single brim or leg.

When you screw drywall directly onto your wall or ceiling, the studs will serve as a passage for more vibration transfer, allowing it to get into a room.

So instead of using screws, professionals recommend attaching resilient channels into your wall or ceiling studs before topping them with drywall.

Additionally, a resilient channel acts as a spring between the studs and drywall. So, when sound waves hit a wall that has a resilient channel, the drywall will vibrate independently. Meaning the studs will not receive any of the vibrations.

Resilient channels can also decouple structure-borne noise by providing airspace to a wall.

Meanwhile, a furring channel has a shape similar to a fedora hat. Unlike a resilient channel that you attach to the framing, a hat channel is connected to studs or joists through legs or brims.

A furring channel or a hat channel is a framing piece that resists corrosion. Its primary purpose is to fur out walls in ceiling and masonry projects.

You can see furring channels commonly used in renovating basements. Still, it has many other applications, such as on-wall projects.

Unlike resilient channels, there are two types of furring channels:

  • Wood
  • Metal

Moreover, hat channels also provide a high level of soundproofing. But for that to be possible, you will need to employ some decoupling methods on the framing from the drywall.

Hat channels create a smooth, raised, and level surface where you can attach sheathing. The gap that the hat channels make provides airspace. This space increases the insulation’s sound control effectiveness in the wall cavities from 36 to 46 STC.

The Pros of Resilient Channels

Practical and affordable

If you know how to choose wisely, resilient channels are relatively affordable. Installing it on the walls of your home will provide it with sound insulation.

Additionally, adjoining the walls of your home’s rooms can be very expensive. But resilient channels can cut the cost.

Resilient channels are even more beneficial for people who have apartments. The reason is that it acts as an excellent adjoining solution for the walls.

High STC rating

A high-quality resilient channel can possess an STC rating of up to 65. Such is considered very high. For this reason, resilient channels are incredibly popular for people who want to soundproof their homes.

However, it is essential to ensure that the company getting your resilient channel has proof for the STC rating that they claim. If they cannot provide you with any evidence, you should think twice about getting the material from them.

There should also be no contact between two resilient channels. If there is, the channel will be ineffective for sound absorption.

The Cons of Resilient Channels

They have less quality than they were decades ago

The major drawback about resilient channels is that their quality became lower than it used to be.

Decades ago, resilient channels had higher STC ratings compared to their rating today. For this reason, they work excellently in terms of soundproofing. Of course, they still work very well today.

The main reason for the decrease in quality is that many manufacturers started creating resilient channels. To compete with the growing supplies, they had to lower the cost of the materials, sacrificing the quality of the finished product.

Provides a possibility for a short circuit

Resilient channels are generally drawn upside down on construction plans. For this reason, a short circuit may happen when the resilient channel is not installed the right way.

Additionally, the drywall’s weight can push the resilient channel into the studs, precisely not what should happen. As a result, it may lead to a short circuit. It will also work poorly for sound insulation.

The Pros of Hat Channels

Easy installation

Compared to resilient channels, hat channels do not require professional knowledge for installation. Such is unlike hat channels that require a professional’s help during installation.

For furring channels, you need to look for an installation manual to know how to snap the hat channel into the clip.

Splits up interior finishes from moisture and fire

Hat channels create an airspace between the base and the interior finishes. For this reason, they provide your home with separation from any source of moisture and fire. So, it adds up to the safety of your home.

Since hat channels protect interior finishes from moisture, the interior does not rot quickly.

The Cons of Hat Channels

The double attachment provides passage for vibration

Hat channels have a double attachment to support more mass. While it adds up to the durability, the double attachment creates more passageways for sound vibration movement. This factor results in less effectiveness when it comes to soundproofing.

Sources

  1. Meg Escott, Soundproofing Solutions, House Plans Helper, https://www.houseplanshelper.com/soundproofing-solutions.html/
  2. How to Soundproof a Room, Family Handyman, https://www.familyhandyman.com/project/how-to-soundproof-a-room/

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