How to Apply Acoustical Sealants
Acoustical sealants are primarily used as sound inhibitors, preventing voices from traveling from room to room, or outside noise to come inside. But, it also acts as a vapor barrier. It is basically non-hardening rubber used between drywall panels to create sound barriers. The application process is simple and is easily incorporated in your ongoing construction process. The sealant is available for both commercial and domestic use, for domestic purposes the sealant tube is easily fitted into any standard glue gun.
Step 1 – Construction of the Frame
Construct the frame of your project (room, partitions etc) as planned in advance. For effective sound barriers many people go for decoupling of the drywall, this is entirely optional depending on your budget.
Step 2 – Installing Drywall Panels
Install the first dry wall panel according to standard procedure. Before applying the acoustical sealant clean the area removing any saw dust etc, than use the sealant around electrical boxes and sealing any open corners.
Step 3 – Adding a Layer of Acoustical Sealant to Adjacent Drywall Panels
Apply acoustical sealant between two adjacent panels of drywall using a gun. It acts both as glue and a sealant; therefore you will not have to use any other adhesive.
Step 4 – Cleaning Excess Sealant and Continuing with the Process
Clean away any excess acoustical sealant using a putty knife. You don’t want extra sealant everywhere as it does not dry up completely and maintains an elastic viscous consistency which means it can stick to almost anything and affect the finishing if dabs of it are put on the panel other than the joints. Continue the panels after panel process of applying the acoustical sealant between drywall panels until you are done.
Step 5 – Sealing and Caulking
Cover the joints with drywall tape and caulk over carefully. As mentioned before, the acoustical sealant doesn’t dry out completely therefore the sealing, taping and caulking job has to be done carefully for a perfect finish and holding the acoustical sealant in place. You can also use joint compound as caulking agent. Finish up by letting the caulk dry up and then sanding it to a smooth finish.
Step 6 – Tips and Advice
Before starting with the construction of frame, wear a pair of gloves to protect your hands. If you go for decoupling the drywall use damping material at the back of the second drywall layer. If the weather is very humid postpone the process, its best done in slightly colder temperatures, which also means you have to get this job done before the heating system is activated.
You cannot use acoustical sealant on an exposed surface as it is always sticky as it does not completely dry up. Always clear away dirt and particles before application as they might affect the adhesive quality of the acoustical sealant. Priming before sealant is applied is often not needed, so consult the literature of the sealant you have purchased to check these details.