Sound insulation over laminate flooring?

Lifehacks Asked by Elitza Dimitrova on December 5, 2021

We recently moved in a new property it’s a two bedroom flat with laminate flooring in the entrance hall and in the lounge. I bought a rug but downfloor neighbors complain when our children play, run around etc especially now when we all spend days at home. So the question is what else can I do to minimise the noise? Can I buy underlay and put it between laminate flooring and the rug? Or any other ideas please?

3 Answers

I have exactly that problem - the one of your neighbors. They must have hard flooring, and the children play in the most original and noisy ways. It is maddening. While I did not do anything to solve my problem, the solution should be quite simple.

The best thing is to prevent noise from happening, instead of trying to hide it. The easiest way is to lay on the floor some kind of carpet, regardless of how cheap. It will absorb most of the noises - at least the really bothering ones.

When you need the hard-floor itself (for whatever reason), just roll the carpet and move it away. Do your thing. Re-install the carpet when you finish.

Wearing socks can help. Applying a thin sponge on the sole of the shoes / slippers might help. But it is impossible to "hack" all toys, to not make noise when they are dropped.

I bought a rug but downfloor neighbors complain when our children play, run around etc especially now when we all spend days at home.

I suspect one of the following:

  1. the rug is actually too thin, or the wrong material / make, and it does not actually dampen noises. For example, a simple plastic sheet will not be useful against noises, even if it protects the floor.

  2. The rug is too small and it does not cover all hard-floor. Maybe you need to buy bigger rugs, or even more rugs - depending on the exact details of your apartment. Children will find it very easy to play exactly on that spot of hard floor not covered by a rug.

  3. Some people are simply very sensitive, or are actually sick, and they need silence - to have their much needed rest. In this case, you should have an open chat with the neighbors, to understand what exactly is bothering, so you can fight the problem better. Worst case, you need to talk to your children to be more careful - which is not very bad in itself either.

Answered by virolino on December 5, 2021

A thick underlay will help, but only when that is the surface being played on. If there is a bare floor nearby, you can bet it will generate footstep noise when it gets walked on. You did not mention what the floors in the rest of the unit are like, but if they are thin carpet they also have a similar problem.

Answered by Chris K8NVH on December 5, 2021

The answer is really a matter of getting your children to play around the apartment wearing stockings or even while barefoot.

We naturally use the cushioning of shoes or running shoes and plant our feet further apart and land harder on our heel when we step or run. Barefooted, we tend to take smaller steps and land on the balls of our feet which is more flexible to absorb the shock. Barefooted walking and playing is healthier for us than wearing shoes according to what I've read about it. My podiatrist agrees—unless you step on a Lego™ brick.

Did you know that naturalists and explorers try to walk silently so as to see more wildlife? Nature photographers also try to make no noise as they walk so as not to scare tiny animals. Ask your children if they can try to imitate them.

Good luck.

Answered by Stan on December 5, 2021

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