Noise pollution is a serious issue, particularly when living in an area with high levels of air traffic or busy roads. Too much noise can be damaging to health (increased stress, disrupted sleep). It can also hinder academic learning and concentration.
Noise levels are measured in decibels (dB).
A comfortable sound level is around 35dB in daytime and 30dB at night.
Acoustic insulation glazing cuts out excess sound and the harmful effects of noise and is particularly effective in buildings near to high streets, urban traffic, motorways, train stations and airports.
The acoustic glass within a double-glazed unit comprises a special interlayer which acts as a dampening core to prevent sound frequencies from vibrating from one pane of glass to the other. This absorbs and weakens sound energy, helping to act as a barrier to noise.
This plastic interlayer also has the additional safety and security properties of laminated glass (see “safety and security glass” section).
Many people would advise that triple pane glass would have a greater sound deadening ability. Unfortunately, triple pane glass only offers a very slight enhancement over standard double pane at lower frequencies due to the additional density of the additional pane of glass. Overall there is very little difference in the Sound Transmission Class rating between triple and double glazing providing overall airspace between the panes is constant between the two constructions.
For example: Consider a triple pane with two 6mm airspaces and double glazing with single 12mm airspace, both using 3mm glass. The sound transmission will be identical if the IGU’s are the same dimensions.
Using one thicker (e.g. 6mm) and one thinner (e.g. 3mm) pane of glass in an IGU may also help deaden sound because each pane of glass is “transparent” to a different frequency and each piece of glass will then attenuate the frequency that the other pane of glass “passed”.