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Sound is an audible vibration, and metal buildings tend to relay a considerable amount of noise. Whether you want to soundproof airplane hangars or industrial facilities, this article will share tips and tricks you can utilize to take care of the noise.
For efficient soundproofing of metal buildings, here are some tips and tricks to guide you throughout the process. More tips are covered below.
- Set some goals for your soundproofing project.
- Use the mass addition soundproofing method.
- Check the weight and depth of the elements.
- Maintain elements of the shed or building.
- Ensure correct soundproofing materials are chosen for each application.
This article will cover more tips and tricks and introduce you to other aspects of soundproofing that you may or may not have known. If you’re interested in effectively soundproofing a metal building, take a seat and keep reading for more information.
How to soundproof a metal building
In 2007, WHO, aka The World Health Organization, tagged noise as a health problem thanks to a survey held in several European cities. Metal buildings have a high noise production rate thanks to their design and light structure.
The following tips below are specialized solely for metal buildings. This article will proceed away from the science of sound and into the tips of soundproofing your metal building.
1. Set some goals for your soundproofing project
If you’re new to this skill set, you may disregard this tip entirely. The reason is that most people go into it with the thought process of simply getting rid of the noise. However, there is a science to soundproofing metal buildings.
Because of their design, build and structure, you must sit down and narrow down what goals you want to achieve. Your soundproofing project should have a plan of action and which elements will help you achieve those goals.
For example, if your metal building is a manufacturing building. You have a diverse number of machinery in the building. The noise coming from it does not meet the noise and vibration regulations of the EPA or the Environmental Protection Agency.
Most of the noise in metal buildings is a result of reverberation and sound pressure levels. Reverberation is the sound that reflects off of hard surfaces. Sound pressure levels refer to the overall strength of the sound.
One of your main goals could be to cut down on the sound pressure levels while also reducing the amount of reverberation in the metal building.
You can have two choices:
- Soundproof the entire building (the cause of this article)
- Soundproof the source of the noise
The choice is up to you and how you want to meet your soundproofing goals. Hence the reason for this trip. It’s a great idea to narrow down your problem and think of a plan of action that you will act upon to solve your noise problem.
Creating goals will also come in handy with other tips showcased in this article. Keep reading for more handy techniques.
2. Use the mass addition soundproofing method
This article is specifically on soundproofing metal buildings. As shared earlier, metal buildings are lighter compared to other buildings with much heavier construction.
The design and construction of metal buildings allow you to focus on the two main elements of this project. These elements include the surface of the metal building and the space inside the said building.
It may sound easy, but metal buildings tend to be on the larger side despite their weight. The reason for this could be their purpose. The purpose of the majority of metal buildings is more on the inhabitable functional side.
A good tip if you want to insulate your metal building is to use the mass addition method. This method allows you to insulate a lot better and faster. Here’s how you can create mass and allow for soundproofing in your metal building.
First things first, build a vertical framework known as a stud. On each side of the stud, you add drywall.
You have now created a form of mass through the stud and the drywall, and there lies a separation between the metal buildings’ wall and the new mass created with the stud framing technique.
The stud framing technique fits in on both ceilings and floors. By creating different masses on both the floor and the ceiling, you can create your lightweight form of soundproofing.
It may seem like the end, but you can add soundproofing material into the separated space should you want extra soundproofing benefits. It’s always a good measure, and it’s excellent professional practice.
3. Check the weight and depth of the elements in your metal buildings
Before getting into the nit and grit of this soundproofing project, part of the planning process is understanding the scale of things.
Before you can get to soundproofing, professionals recommend that you ascertain the weight of the metal building.
Additionally, check the weight of the elements in your metal building, such as the ceiling or the floor. Another tip to check on is the depth of the ceiling plenum. These elements are just some of the points you need to take care of before getting your hands dirty.
Here are some additional questions on your metal building’s ceiling that you should be asking before getting started:
- What is the weight of the ceiling?
- What is the suspension method used on the ceiling?
- What is the depth of the ceiling?
Please note that the depth of the ceiling is considered the most important on this checklist. It’s a piece of information required before anything else. After providing the answers to the questions, you are free to add the insulation of your choice.
4. Maintain elements of the shed or building.eilings and walls
If you decide to use the stud framing technique, professionals recommend maintaining the newly-added assets. One way to maintain the cohesion of the walls is by ensuring that you do not have wall outlets back-to-back.
If you do have the outlets back-to-back, it increases the risk of having a fire. When the outlets are back-to-back, the wall loses its fire-resistant ability. Not only is this a design choice but also a safe choice.
If you are insulating the ceiling of your metal building, numerous recessed lighting may not be the recommended lighting choice. The reason for this recommendation lies in the balance.
Ceilings not only consist of lighting but also other elements such as HVAC connections. All these connections and lighting may require numerous holes all over the ceiling. This design choice may not be pleasant in the long run.
Ensure that you have a game plan going in to have the correct number of lighting holes and the required connections. Maintaining the balance of these building systems will help in the long-run maintenance of your metal building.
5. Ensure correct soundproofing materials are chosen for each application
The soundproof industry is vast, and thanks to technological advancements, there have been numerous advancements in this industry.
As shared earlier, the best soundproofing material absorbs the sound waves and doesn’t let them bounce off the material. As shared in the first tip, one of the goals could be to use an ideal material for absorbing sound.
Choosing soundproofing materials can be done according to the goals you have set aside. What type of soundproof material do you need? Is it within your budget? Is it worth the long-term investment?
Here are some of the best soundproof materials for metal buildings:
- Acoustic Foam (commonly referred to as Studio Foam)
- Sound Insulation (this term is a general term for materials such as mineral wool, rock wool, and fiberglass)
- Acoustic panels or boards
- Acoustic Fabrics
- Floor Underlayment
- Architectural soundproofing
In the case of metal buildings, the sound insulation material fiberglass is considered ideal.
The reason behind fiberglass lies in its design. The fiberglass will fit between the stud framework as shared earlier stud framework is the most highly recommended soundproofing method.
Acoustic Foam is a good runner-up, but you want to base your choice on the efficiency of the material, durability, sound absorption, and price.
Please note that soundproofing is not an easy job. Soundproofing a room and soundproofing a building cannot be considered two sides of the same coin.
The job of soundproofing a metal building requires you to consider scale. The sheer size of metal buildings will require a lot of time, effort, and resources into your soundproofing project.
How do you reduce metal noise on metal?
The best way to reduce mental noise from metal or a metal building would be to soundproof the metal. Metal buildings come in shapes and sizes and serve different functions.
It is possible to soundproof metal or metal buildings despite their different design, structure, and construction.
Regardless, if you want to soundproof a metal roof, it is also possible. How do you do it?
Professionals recommend using a stud framework alongside drywall to reduce metal noise entirely. Not only that, but you can also add an insulating material in between for the bonus effect.
There are other methods, but soundproofing metals is quite a specific niche.
Can you soundproof a metal shed?
Yes, you can soundproof a metal shed. A metal shed classifies as a metal building and thus can undergo soundproofing similarly to other metal buildings such as manufacturing industries.
The best way to soundproof your metal shed would be to add mass.
This process of adding mass consists of using a stud framework technique. Metal buildings tend to be very light in weight compared to other heavier buildings such as concrete buildings.
The mass adding method will allow you to add a room within a room. The stud framing will require you to add drywall, and between these two elements, you can add some insulation material.
Currently, this method is the best long-term soundproofing method for metal buildings.
Professionals find this method effective and efficient. More so, if you’re looking for a permanent soundproofing solution to your metal building.
Please note that there are numerous other methods. You could also choose to simply soundproof a specific element or aspect inside your metal shed and not the metal shed alone.
This method is inefficient, but the job will get done in the end.
How do you stop a metal building from echoing?
The acoustics in a metal building is known to be uninviting. These echoes in metal buildings are because sound wave reflection occurs from the metal building’s surface.
The best way to stop the possibly infuriating echoes caused by metal buildings would be to use a sound-absorbing material. Sound-absorbing materials are just one aspect of the soundproofing process.
Sound absorbing materials will not allow the sound waves to reflect off their surface. Why? Because the surface of this material will be too dense, and thus the reduction of sound reflection is within reach.
For a metal building, professionals highly recommend the use of fiberglass. Fiberglass is the most recommended of the materials because its designed and made to fit in stud framework.
Fiberglass is also a great sound absorption material. It effectively reduces noise and improves the overall acoustics in a room.
Not only that, but fiberglass is incredibly versatile. Fiberglass can be used in other spaces and situations apart from metal buildings.
Regardless, it is the top sound insulation pick for metal buildings and would be an excellent soundproofing addition.
- Acoustiblok, 30 Types of Soundproofing material explained, Acoustiblok https://www.acoustiblok.co.uk/soundproofing-materials/#Types_of_Soundproofing_Materials
- Marc Asselineau, Building Acoustics, (CRC Press: New York, 2015) 248.
- USEPA, Clean Air Act Title IV – Noise Pollution, USEPA https://www.epa.gov/clean-air-act-overview/clean-air-act-title-iv-noise-pollution
- Marcy Marro, Sound Insulation and Noise Control, Metal Architecture, https://www.metalarchitecture.com/articles/sound-isolation-and-noise-control
- TM Soundproofing, Room Soundproofing, TM Soundproofing, https://www.tmsoundproofing.com/Room-Soundproofing.html
- iKoustic, Science of Soundproofing, iKoustic, https://www.ikoustic.co.uk/science-soundproofing