Friday, July 28, 2006

Mass loaded vinyl Installation Instructions

This is a quick narrative on the proper Mass loaded vinyl installation instructions.
As you probably already know, MLV is very heavy. Installation is always at least a two man job. Adequate supplies of fasterners, washers or tin caps, Acoustical-Caulk, and MLV sealer seam tape should be on hand. For best results, apply caulk between the MLV and the top and bottom plates, at seams, and around penetrations such as electrical switches and outlets. Sound is air pressure: The more leaks you can eliminate, the better the MLV installation will perform for your customer.
Always install MLV across studs and tresses not parallel with them. This gives you leverage when pulling the material. Since you will be hanging the material horizontally it will take more than one piece to cover from floor to ceiling. We recommend you begin with the lower piece so you can become familiar with the installation process. After you become comfortable working with the material you may choose to start with the top piece and fill in the lower section.
When securing MLV material you have several choices. You can use nails, screws, or staples to secure material to wood studs. Most installers prefer to use an air stapler. Always use washers or roofing "tin caps" to spread weight and prevent tearing of the material. If using air to drive your nails or staples always run your pressure low enough so you do not shoot through your washers. When using screws, countersink into the washer. Remember that anything sticking up will put a dimple in the wall board, so keep material and fasteners as flush as possible. When installing on metal studs the screw method is the only one we recommend. When installing on metal studs, have a spacer available to keep studs in line.
Before you begin, take good notes on where electrical boxes are in the area and any other access openings which should not be covered up. Cut out all of these as you go, so you do not miss any. Seal these openings to prevent sound from penetrating your MLV barrier.

Recommended Installation Procedure:

1. Take a measurement from a corner to your first obstacle (i.e. window/door/wall). The weight of the MLV material determines if this piece would be too large to handle. If so measure back a reasonable size. Check for a stud and correct your measurement accordingly. Roll out and cut the measured piece using your T-square and razor knife. DO NOT unroll the entire roll. The best results are achieved by scoring the MLV material a knife.

2. Roll back the cut piece in the opposite way it came off the roll. This prevents the ends from curling up as you hang the material.

3. First place the cutoff piece into the corner to begin hanging. Be sure to fasten it so the material will unroll level. After securing the first edge at the corner with 5 fasteners, begin to unroll the material across the studs. Unroll the MLV far enough to place it between the studs and pull as necessary to position the material across the studs. DO NOT unroll the entire piece. The rolled up part keeps all the material rigid and prevents it from falling over until you can secure it. Continue fastening with 5 fasteners per stud in the same fashion. Be sure to secure the end of the piece to the stud in such a way that you are able to butt the next piece up to it, like joints in wallboard. Repeat this process until the entire area is covered Please note that ceiling application is the same but will require additional fasteners due to the weight.

4. Check the entire area covered to be sure all MLV material is secured properly, without bubbles or large bumps. Be sure that all fasteners are down flush and check your notes for any electrical receptacles or access panels that may have been covered. Cut out any that are found and add any fasteners to areas that need them.

5. Using tape and acoustical caulk (as recommended), begin to seal all joints and cut out boxes and access points. Be sure to put tape over all corners, seams and ends that are exposed like at window and door openings.

6. Do one final inspection of the entire job to be certain no part of the job was missed and nothing was covered up (i.e. light switches, outlets.) Your installation is now complete.

7. Once the MLV is installed and sealed, you simply screw up another layer of drywall and finish it as usual.
I hope this narrative reaches everyone considering installing mass loaded vinyl


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scott@soundproofingamerica.com
Call Toll Free (877) 530-0139

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