It’s no secret that the UK is in the midst of an ongoing housing crisis, and with the Government pledging in its manifesto to build one million homes over the next five years there will need to be a focus on building taller residential buildings, such as apartments and flats.
One area, in particular, that impacts the occupants of this type of building is noise pollution. Noisy neighbours from above or below can significantly impact the wellbeing of residents who may have to put up with loud televisions, music and excessive shouting. The problem is highlighted by the fact that as many as 25% of adults say they lose sleep due to noise from neighbours.
Exposure to prolonged or excessive noise has been shown to cause a number of health problems for residents. The most obvious issues originate from interrupted sleep with fatigue, stress and poor concentration impairing day to day activities and leading to productivity losses in the workplace. And even if a person does not wake up, continual noise sets off the body’s acute stress response, which raises blood pressure and heart rate, potentially mobilising a state of hyperarousal which can lead to cardiovascular disease. Other serious issues can also occur as a result of exposure to excessive noise including cognitive impairment, tinnitus and hearing loss. It is therefore crucial for housebuilders and developers to put in place measures to reduce noise pollution.
How can RecoLay acoustic underlay help?
One measure that can efficiently reduce noise is CFS RecoLay acoustic underlay flooring which is stocked by Carpet & Flooring. Sitting beneath the flooring, high quality acoustic underlay creates a barrier to sound, ensuring any noise is minimised. There are several options available, suitable for any project, so housebuilders and developers should work with flooring providers to specify the correct underlay.
For properties with carpet, wood or laminate flooring, triple layer RecoLay 12mm acoustic underlay is the most effective option when it comes to noise reduction. Made with PVC and PE foam, this type of underlay improves airborne sound insulation with an impact sound reduction of around 31 decibels. We also have underlay options designed to work with ceramic floors such as the RecoLay 6mm acoustic underlay which is made from cork and rubber.
For projects that will incorporate underfloor heating, the RecoLay 4.5mm option is perfect for laminate and engineered wood floors, whilst the RecoLay 3mm option is suited to carpet types, sheet Vinyl, click LVT and linoleum. We also have stick down 1.6 LVT options available which are ideal for use under luxury vinyl tiles and underfloor heating.
Are there any further benefits?
Whilst reduced noise is the key benefit of acoustic underlay flooring, there are a number of further advantages that come with RecoLay acoustic underlay. With the Government committing to reaching net zero carbon by 2050, for example, there is a growing requirement for the use of environmentally friendly or sustainable building products in the development of homes. We provide underlay which is made from recycled raw materials and in the manufacture of our RecoLay 10mm and 12mm we use waste from the major floorcovering manufacturers as well as PVC waste from old floors that have been uplifted. What’s more, over 200 tonnes of tyre waste is converted every month, giving the material a second life in our specialist underlays.
Another benefit of fitting underlay on wood or laminate ground flooring, in particular, is that it will help to keep moisture at bay for cold concrete or stone floors, protecting both the underlay and flooring from potential damage.
A sound solution
As more and more residential developments are built to help ease the housing crisis, housebuilders and developers have a responsibility to consider the requirements of future occupants. With noise pollution from above and below representing a particular issue for residents of flats and apartments, the use of CSF RecoLay acoustic underlay in buildings is becoming increasingly important and is likely to play a key role in future homes.