Complete Green Glue Review: All Your Questions Answered
Most people who have dabbled in home soundproofing projects would likely have come across Green Glue. For those who have not, let me quickly clear up a misconception. Green Glue is actually not a glue, but rather a damping compound which can convert sound waves into heat, thus reducing noise.
If you are curious if Green Glue is good for soundproofing, the answer is yes. It works well as a sound dampener and is especially effective when it comes to low frequency sounds such as the rumble of construction from a distance, waves, or musical instruments like the tuba.
In this Green Glue review, I will share with you all you need to know to make this an effective soundproofing solution and what are some of the products you can use for this purpose.
Tip: Check out this post for the Best Green Glue Alternatives.
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What is Green Glue?
Green Glue is a viscoelastic dampening material.
To put it simply, it transforms a small quantity of sound energy into heat and is commonly used to isolate sound going from one layer to the next between two solid layers of material.
Because it does not dry, it cannot be utilized as a long-term adhesive like other popular glues. It’s built to be adaptable over time, and it’s this flexibility that makes it so powerful.
Green glue, to be clear, is neither a sound diffuser nor a sound absorber.
It only prevents sound and vibrations from propagating between two solid materials, such as walls and drywall, which is the most common use case.
Green Glue Sealant, Joist Tape, and Sealant Clip are some of the green glue products available on the market which we will look into in the sections below.
Another benefit of using Green Glue is that it is environmentally friendly and does not contain any hazardous material. That said, it does have a smell that might be unpleasant to some, but it will dissipate very quickly.
Not only that, they are also mold and moisture resistant, thus ensuring durability and low maintenance.
Ideally though, you would use Green Glue with other soundproofing materials or techniques in order to have the best effect.
Hey, quick one. If you intend to start a soundproofing project soon, check out our Best Materials for Soundproofing post to get a headstart. Most projects require similar materials, so this post will save you a ton of time researching.
How Does Green Glue Work?
Green Glue is a sound dampening glue that serves to prevent sound waves from traveling between two hard layers of wall.
Sound passes through any medium by vibrating the molecules within it, which then transfers the sound.
Some mediums are better at transmitting sound than others, and so the best thing we can do is to turn a surface or area into one that transmits sound poorly, effectively soundproofing it.
The bottom line is, it all boils down to the ability to stop sound vibrations. This can be accomplished in a variety of ways, including:
- Using Green Glue to create a damping layer
- Decoupling walls so there is no direct contact
- Adding mass such as furniture or Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV)
So how exactly does Green Glue help in soundproofing?
When sound travels through a wall, it causes the molecules in the wall to vibrate perpendicular to their initial location, very much like how after a spring has been pressed, it moves upward and downward.
This up-down force, also known as the ‘shear’ force, causes neighboring molecules to vibrate in a similar manner, resulting in a ripple effect which causes sound energy to be transmitted through vibrations.
Green glue prevents this upward-downward motion by resisting shear strain and preventing vibration of the material on which it is placed. This is what prevents sound from being broadcast.
The act of resisting the shear force generates heat on a microscopic scale, which is dissipated inside the wall.
Does Green Glue really work?
There is no absolute answer to this as it really depends on what you want to accomplish with it. Green Glue is not a complete soundproofing solution but it can certainly dramatically minimize unwanted noise.
Green Glue will typically reduce unwanted noise by up to 75 percent, which is fantastic and will make a noticeable impact. Here is another example:
You may reduce noise by around 12 decibels by gluing a layer of drywall on one side with Green Glue. This effectively eliminates more than half of the noise (57 percent).
A layer of drywall on both sides with Green Glue will provide around 15 dB of noise reduction or about 64% perceived noise reduction– which isn’t much of a difference compared to a single drywall layer with Green Glue.
The majority of people recommend it, and rightly so; it is unquestionably one of the best on the market and really dependable.
It will dampen sound and reduce vibrations between rooms, with visible results.
Types of Green Glue variants
There are 5 different products from Green Glue that you can use for different soundproofing projects. I will go into a bit of details of each variant in the section below.
1. Green Glue Damping Compound (tube and bucket)
Starting off with the most popular and commonly used Green Glue product is the damping compound. This flagship product comes in 2 different types of packaging, in tube form and in a 5-gallon bucket. Economically speaking, a bucket would be better value if you are carrying out a big project. According to the Green Glue website, here is an estimate of the quantity you would require based on surface area:
“Each case of our Green Glue Noiseproofing Compound contains 12 tubes and covers approximately 192 sq. ft. at the recommended 2 tubes per 4’ x 8’ (3 m²) sheet coverage. Each 5-gallon pail of Compound covers approximately 365 ft² (33.9 m²), or approximately 22 tubes worth of product.”
The ones in tube form is also known as The Green Glue Tubes. Two cases of the tubes (24 tubes) equal to one 5 gallon bucket.
There’s no need to buy an applicator gun (which is around $30) since the tubes themselves act like it.
The product offers basically everything that the compound bucket does. The only difference is that smaller groups of workers often use it for smaller surfaces (under 300 square feet).
The 5-gallon bucket holds roughly the same quantity of Green Glue tubes as 24 Green Glue tubes. The Green Glue Compound bucket is appropriate for areas greater than 300 square feet. When it comes to cost, if you use it on larger projects, you can efficiently preserve the cost-quantity ratio.
The product appears to be a great value. Many construction workers, however, who have had the opportunity to use the product, claim that it has drawbacks. They grumbled about having to keep reloading the applicator pistol. That is somewhat correct, as it slows down the construction process and causes you to become more tired. The applicator, too, requires upkeep (you must clean it on a regular basis to minimize leakage), which could be time consuming.
- 5 Gallon bucket covering approximately 385 square feet
- Each box comes with installation instructions (in English and Spanish) and data sheets.
- Green Glue is the simplest, most effective and affordable soundproofing product currently on the market.
- Green Glue is also one of the few products that greatly reduces both, impact and airborne noise.
2. Green Glue Noiseproofing Sealant
This is a paintable polymer that has been created to hide flaws and gaps when your remodeling is complete. You can also use it as a finishing touch after using the dampening compound.
This product is one of my favorites because it doesn’t have a strong odor, and it does not crack even after a prolonged period of time.
It’s simple to install, and it takes around two days for the sealant to dry entirely after it’s been applied. From here on, you are free to paint over it if you desire.
3. Green Glue Noiseproofing Joist Tape
Green Glue Joist Tapes are available for those who are concerned about floor soundproofing. The primary goal of this distinct product is to address the problem of squeaky flooring and noisy footsteps.
It is made of foam and works by forming an airtight seal around the perimeter to reduce total foot traffic. For those who are experiencing such issues, this product offers a quick and simple remedy. The good news is that you won’t need to use any other items once you have this.
Installing it is very straightforward. All you need to do is to roll the tape across the floor joists and replace/install the subflooring on top.
4. Green Glue Clips
Green Glue noiseproofing clips are components that are used to physically isolate two sides of a wall.
This allows one side of the wall to carry sound waves independently of the other, reducing vibrations between them.
Green Glue Noiseproofing Clips are specifically designed for use with hat channels. Sound energy will be reduced when these two are added to the ceiling joists, making your home quieter.
This is the product to use if you have a problem with high frequencies or impact noise.
Steps are a good example of impact noise, and this was the issue we had in our house, which we solved with Clips and Joist Tape.
Just take note that this is not meant to be installed over drywalls!
What are the Pros and Cons of Green Glue?
Green Glue is an innovative product that is good at reducing noise and vibrations significantly, and is one of the best things out there (in my opinion).
If you bother to look around, you will discover that it generally outperforms its competition and the fact that it can lower noise levels by up to 56 decibels is pretty solid.
In this section, I will share the biggest advantages and disadvantages Green Glue offers.
Benefits of Green Glue
Outside noise is minimized. This is one of my favorite aspects of soundproofing. You won’t have to worry about outside noise interfering with your work. You may do a terrific job of keeping noise out of your living space by using a combination of laminates or boards around the wall and include a sealer around the cracks.
Makes Life More Convenient. It is much easier to live in a peaceful atmosphere than it is to live in one that is noisy. It’s easier to hear discussions with fewer vibrations from the walls and roof, and you won’t have to strain your hearing when speaking with someone in another room.
A more secure environment. Noise pollution is a major environmental issue, and doing your part to minimize noise levels in your apartment or house could be a great way to contribute to a greener lifestyle.
Keep in Touch with Your Neighbors. Soundproofing can help you avoid a fight with your neighbors, especially if you listen to loud music too regularly. Nobody wants to live in a noisy neighborhood, and you don’t want to be the cause of a landlord’s meeting, so keep things civil.
Easy to use. All of Green Glue’s products are very easy to install, even if you think that you are not a handy person. In this respect, you can DIY many soundproofing projects without the need to engage a professional.
Disadvantages of Green Glue
It can get quite pricey. If you intend to undertake a large project, you might notice that Green Glue can quickly become a big part of the budget. For reference, a 5 gallon bucket costs roughly more than $400, and that will cover approximately 365 ft² (33.9 m²).
It takes a fair amount of time to cure completely. Actually, using the word ‘completely’ might not be super accurate as Green Glue remains fluid and never really dries. That is one of the reasons why it is so effective and long lasting. You need to give it about 30 days for best effect.
How to use Green Glue?
Green Glue is mostly as easy to use as aiming it at a surface and squeezing the trigger.
The technique should be simple if you have an applicator gun and the compound.
All you have to do now is spread the compound evenly throughout the drywall layers with the gun. The first layer of drywall should then be hung, and the green adhesive should be applied.
There are two options for accomplishing this: Apply it to the layer that will be hung or to another layer that will be hung later.
The procedure is the same if you’re going to use tubes. Just make sure you have a caulking gun on hand to make the job go faster.
It doesn’t matter what pattern you draw—as long as you cover the entire surface, any pattern will do.
There are some helpful tips that make the procedure go more smoothly.
Here are my primary suggestions for using Green Glue:
- Because Green Glue is nearly impossible to wipe up, make sure you have enough of newspaper or dustsheets on hand.
- Apply it to the back of a drywall sheet for optimal results, then seal any gaps between sheets.
- While it isn’t poisonous, make sure your workspace is well ventilated and you’re wearing the appropriate safety gear.
- For the easiest application, get a dispensing gun (optional)
How to Maintain Green Glue?
Green Glue is an acoustic sealant and soundproofing material that is made from a non-toxic, water-based polymer. It is used to reduce noise transmission between rooms and to seal cracks and seams in walls and ceilings. Green Glue is easy to use and can be applied with a standard caulking gun.
One of the great things about Green Glue is that it is very easy to maintain. It does not require any special care or cleaning and will not degrade or lose its effectiveness over time. In fact, Green Glue actually gets better over time as it continues to seal cracks and seams.
Where to buy Green Glue?
It seems that there are a few sites online where you can purchase Green Glue, but my preferred option is to get it from their Amazon store. You can a wide variety of products and there is the occasional price mark down.
And if you have Amazon Prime or the credit card, you might even enjoy free shipping or some other perks.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is Green Glue worth it?
While it will not be the cheapest soundproofing product you will ever buy, Green Glue is a worthy investment for its effectiveness and ease of use. You will need to weigh the importance your soundproofing project versus your need for a space to be quiet. That being said, I find that Green Glue is high up there when it comes to performance.
Is Green Glue removable?
Green Glue is not an adhesive, but rather a noiseproofing compound. If you do need to get rid of it or clean up, using 70% Isopropyl Alcohol would help.
How Long Does Green Glue Take To Work?
According to the manufacturer, Green Glue needs about 30 days to cure and to extract its maximum benefits. Take note that it does not dry completely and that is normal.
Does Green Glue Work For Impact and Airborne Noise?
Applying layers of Green Glue Noiseproofing Compound to the floor above reduces airborne noise but not impact or other structure-borne noise. As sound waves travel through a building, the compound dissipates the vibrations they cause. Unlike other noiseproofing alternatives, the compound is put between two stiff materials (for example, OSB subflooring) and lowers noise at all frequencies.
Does Green Glue Go Bad? How Long Can You Store Green Glue Without Using It?
Green Glue claims that the product has a one-year shelf life from the date of manufacturing. However, many individuals have shared their experiences online, claiming that if you keep it cool and out of direct sunshine or heat, it can last for 5-6 years before turning bad!
The best way to tell if the glue is safe is to examine its consistency. If it’s clumpy, it’s expired; but, if the consistency is free-flowing and clear, it’s safe to use.
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