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Acoustic Floating Floor

Acoustic Floating Floor

Architects, engineers  and sound insulation contractors are very familiar with the challenges of creating acoustically optimised spaces. One innovative solution that has gained prominence in the field of sound insulation is the acoustic floating floor. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the technical intricacies of an acoustic floating floor, highlighting its unique characteristics, working principles, and optimal applications.

What is an Acoustic Floating Floor?

An acoustic floating floor is a specialised construction technique designed to minimise airborne and impact sound transmission between floors. Unlike traditional acoustic floors, which are directly connected to the structural base, an acoustic floating floor is intentionally decoupled or isolated from the floor’s foundation. This decoupling is achieved by utilising resilient under screed acoustic insulation  materials and specific installation methods, allowing the floating floor to operate independently.

How Does an Acoustic Floating Floor Work?

  1. Resilient Underlayment: At the core of an acoustic floating floor is a resilient underlayment, which serves as a crucial element forwhat is an acoustic floating floor sound insulation. This underlayment is typically composed of materials with high-density, viscoelastic properties that absorb and dissipate sound vibrations. It effectively disrupts the transmission of airborne and impact noise by converting the sound energy into minimal heat energy. Products such as Grei – Underscreed Impact Sound Insulation, Upgrei – Acoustic insulation for high thickness floating floors or Roll Acoustic Under Screed Insulation from the Isolgomma range have these properties and meet all government regulations in the UK
  2. Decoupling Techniques: Another essential aspect of this  is the implementation of decoupling techniques. These techniques involve introducing an air gap or resilient layer between the structural base and the flooring system. The air gap acts as a barrier, preventing the transfer of sound vibrations from the floor to the structure. The resilient layer, composed of acoustic floating floormaterials like neoprene or rubber, further isolates the flooring system from the building, reducing the transmission of noise. The Highmat floating floor system from Isolgomma is a high performance acoustic product developed for floating floors
  3. Mass and Density: The acoustic performance of a floating floor is enhanced by incorporating materials with higher mass and density. Materials such as gypsum, concrete or high-density fiberboard (HDF) are commonly utilised to increase the weight and density of the floor assembly. This added mass helps to dampen vibrations and reduce the impact noise generated by footsteps or other sources.

Benefits of an Acoustic Floating Floor

  1. Exceptional Sound Insulation: The primary advantage of  is its ability to provide outstanding soundproofing capabilities. By decoupling the flooring from the structure and employing resilient materials, it effectively minimises the transmission of airborne and impact noise, creating a quieter environment.
  2. Enhanced Privacy and Comfort: They significantly improve privacy levels by reducing sound transfer between rooms. This is particularly beneficial in residential, commercial, or educational settings where confidential conversations or focused work is necessary. Additionally, the reduction of impact noise ensures a comfortable and tranquil living or working environment.
  3. Versatility and Adaptability: Such floors can be seamlessly integrated into various settings, including new constructions or retrofit projects. They can accommodate different types of floor finishes, such as hardwood, laminate, carpet, or tile, making them highly versatile for diverse architectural designs.
  4. Compliance with Building Regulations: Incorporating an acoustic floating floor system ensures compliance with building codes and regulations related to sound insulation. This is crucial in projects where stringent noise control measures are required, such as hospitals, theatres, gyms, or recording studios.

Optimal Applications:

  1. Residential Buildings:

They find wide application in residential buildings, including apartments, condominiums, and single-family homes. They effectively minimise noise disturbances between floors, ensuring a peaceful living environment for residents.

  1. Commercial Spaces:

In commercial settings, such as offices, conference rooms, libraries, and hotels, they provide excellent sound insulation properties. They create acoustically controlled environments, enhancing productivity, concentration, and customer satisfaction.

  1. Educational Institutions:

Schools, colleges, and universities can greatly benefit from acoustic floating floors. These floors help establish quiet study areas, reduce noise distractions, reduce the effect of external vibrations on sensitive equipment and promote a conducive learning environment. We recently worked with the University of Ulster to achieve just such an affect of a conducive learning environment.

In recent years the use of Cross Laminated Floors or CLT for short has grown. and While this material offers many benefits but due to its lack of mass CLT needs insulation and an acoustic floating floor is added to increase mass and increas impact and airborne insulation.

Overcoming Challenges for Successful Implementation

  1. Collaboration and Planning: Effective collaboration between architects, engineers, and sound insulation contractors is essential to overcome challenges associated with acoustic floating floor implementation. Early involvement in the design process allows for a thorough assessment of project requirements, identification of potential challenges, and development of appropriate solutions.
  2. Site-specific Solutions: Each project presents unique challenges, and a one-size-fits-all approach may not suffice. Architects, engineers, and sound insulation contractors must consider the specific site conditions, structural constraints, and performance objectives to develop customised solutions. Conducting on-site evaluations, including structural analysis and noise measurements, can aid in determining the most suitable combination of materials and decoupling techniques.
  3. Compliance with Building Regulations: Adhering to local building codes and regulations is crucial for successful implementation of an acoustic floating floor. Architects and engineers must stay updated on the relevant standards to ensure that the chosen flooring system meets or exceeds the required sound insulation criteria. Collaborating with knowledgeable sound insulation contractors helps ensure compliance and prevents any regulatory issues.


As architects, engineers, and sound insulation contractors, you now have a comprehensive understanding of acoustic floating floors. Their unique design, focused on decoupling the flooring system from the structure, enables superior sound insulation and impact noise reduction. By incorporating resilient material solutions for minimising noise transmission, creating peaceful and comfortable spaces and utilising effective installation techniques, acoustic floating floors provide exceptional acoustic performance. Whether in residential, commercial, or educational applications, acoustic floating floors offer a reliable solution for minimising noise transmission and creating peaceful and comfortable spaces.

Buildtec Acoustics have years of experience working with professionals in this area. if you have any questions do not hesitate to call us on +44 7553 473877 or email us info@buildtecacoustics.co.uk

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