Persimmon Homes Noisy Floors

New Build Inspections

Nick

New Member
I would really appreciate advice on whether I have a problem. When the kids are playing upstairs and/or adults walking around there is a lot of noise from the floor structure that is very audible from the down stairs rooms. (This design characteristic seems to be common to all new build houses that I have been in).
In all the bedrooms modest footfall/walking causes significant vibration to other parts of the bedroom structure.
Construction on the house was completed October/November 2004. We have occupied house since December 2004..
 

Tony

Administrator
It is difficult to say without experiencing the noise and the vibrations. However, new houses often use I-beams for joists these are light and cheaper than solid wood. The vertical section is a piece of fibreboard and the bottom and top of the "I" is real wood. This is actually very strong, but it has to be stored carefully and installed according to the manufacturer's guidelines. If it gets wet there can be problems, holes for pipes and cables can weaken the structure too.

Regarding the flooring, this is often installed using nail guns and these do come loose - this could be part of the problem. Nailing these loose boards down, or ideally screwing them down will solve this problem, reduce movement and noise. Bodgers might blow talk between the boards act as a lubricant and reduce noise too, but this will only last for a while.

Secondly, trades will holes in the floors to access pipework and cables, they may not adequately repair these holes.

Ask the developer what they think. They may try to fob you off by saying that kids are not supposed to jump around, but most developers will fix this kind of problem, especially as you have only been in a few months.

Hope this helps
 

Nick

New Member
Tony,
Thanks for your comments. I will try to look at adjacent houses under construction to try and see the exact construction of the floors. I will also ask the Site manger to have a look/listen.
Two of the upstairs bedrooms are definitely much noisier with the noise being akin to loose boards.
It may be that the large sheets of fibre board used for floors have not been secured to all cross beams. Are there any building regs/ standards that specify the degree of fixing between boards and beams?
 

Tex

New Member
, Hi Nick,
I can hazard a guess here to what noise you're hearing when there's other's walking around the first floor.
You're either hearing the flooring making contact on the joist's when walked upon, or a amplified effect from the void between the ceiling and upstair's floor!
Your flooring may have been laid in a floating system and the partition walls are contructed upon them, in which case, a screw gun and screw's will solve. This isn't a problem, more of a pain to rectify as you have to lift carpet's etc.
Or, it could be that the void is amplifying the movement of the joists.
You stated that it vibrates around the bedroom, i guess you can feel and see objects move when your in motion. So with this in mind i guess it's the latter.
Nothing you can do about this, nor will anybody listen. It's part of the save money on materials problem! They've used joist's that just hit the specification for the job with no insulation in between your ceiling void!
If this is the case, you'll have to learn to live with noise!
Hope i've helped.
 

Nick

New Member
Hi Tex,

Thanks for the comments. Is it worth while lifting the carpet/underlay to have a look? Would putting more nails/screws through floor to joists help? The builder is very unlikely to rebuild these noisy floors so what can I do to help myself?

It is also very unlikely that my kids will stop jumping around.
 

Tex

New Member
Hi Nick,
it could solve the problem and it's certainly worth a try!
Lift the carpet & underlay, You must establish the directions of the joist, usually front to back direction, you must also locate each individual joist, pipes or cable's that could be affected!
Chalk line the joist centre's from wall to wall, this will act as your guide.
A good powerful screwgun is recommended or a cable drill with screw capability.
I would personally use 30mm drywall screw's. Any wickes store etc should have them in stock.
Right, with preperation done, fix the screws with centre's of 400mm apart the whole lengh of the chalk line, and torque down until screw head is sunk flush to the floor!
Relay underlay/carpets!
WHAT OUT FOR PIPES & ELECTRIC CABLE'S!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

Nick

New Member
Hi Tex,

Finally got a chance to look at some of the other houses under construction.

Persimmon have used I-beam joists. There are 3 sizes used small(6cm) , medium(8cm) and large(10cm) by aaprox 20cm height for each joistat approx. 60 cm centres. Floor boards are laid at 90 degrees to joists.

Will follow your fixing advice but need to check with builder so I do not affect NHBC rights ( as small as they may be)
 
G

Guest

Guest
Tony,

Ive lived in my persimmon home for just over 4 moths now and had my bedroom floor adjusted 3 times, but still there is very loud noises which can be heard in the lounge whn we walk on it, Persimmon say to leave it a further 6 months until the house has properly settled down and then call them back again to screw down. Its a pain in the butt having to listen to the ceiling / floors making a creaking noise and also when we open the lounge door it mmakes the bedroom floor/lounge ceiling creak too.

thanks
 

Nick

New Member
Tony,

I will be writing to Persimmon shortly.

Hi E. A. Tay,

Your problems sound very similar. What did Persimmon adjust? Were Persimmon prepared to admit that there was a problem?
 

karen

New Member
Dear Nick,

I have a George Wimpey home and have been in 12 months, I too have had very noisy foorboards in all of the upstairs rooms. The worst room was bedroom 4 which had an horrendous creak, which luckily they have fixed by taking up the carpet and skirting board off and putting a wedge and some nails in. On the landing they couldn't fix it so they had to cut out a piece of floorboard and strengthen it and then apply more nails, this did seem to rectify it but after a week I still have a slight noise. Bedroom 1 they have fixed one creak but this seems to have made other areas worse so I may have to call them back again or live with it!. Bedroom 2 had a bad creak in the middle of the floor so in order for them to roll the carpet back further enough I had to remove everything out of the room apart from the bed. This was a massive job, as it was my daughters room full of toys etc. This is better but there are still noises when you walk - the maintenance team has told me these noises now are probably coming from the ceiling downstairs so there's not a lot they can do about it.

I also have creaks in my bathrooms - when you walk on the tiles, in the shower tray, and when you sit on the toilet. Apparantly the can't do anything in these rooms as we have tiled floors and they wont take these up!

The work took 2 days to do, which wasn't too bad but you can do without the hastle of moving all of your furniture and just the pain of having builders in and out of your house all of the time.

Have you had other problems with your house? I suspect you have.



Karen
 

twub

New Member
Dear Karen,

Just to confuse things Nick is now twub.

It sounds like your problems are much worse than mine.

I have two very active kids who bounce around upstairs so I have lots of noise coming through to the rooms below. I guess this would be the case for any type of house construction.

Persimmon have looked/listened to my floors and do not consider them too noisy to require remedial work. Persimmon claim that the floors are constructed to be creak free under normal walking loads but not kids jumping off beds. However this creak free status only applies to people walking around like angels not the normal crash and bang of daily family life.

I have decided that 3 of the bedrooms are just ok and I will put up with occassional foot fall noise but I will continue to chase on bedroom 3.

twub
 

Chuck Sidfrum

New Member
Noisy, Bouncy, Unlevel Floors - Using Semi-engineered I-Beam Joists

I have two very active kids who bounce around upstairs so I have lots of noise coming through to the rooms below. I guess this would be the case for any type of house construction.

Persimmon have looked/listened to my floors and do not consider them too noisy to require remedial work. Persimmon claim that the floors are constructed to be creak free under normal walking loads but not kids jumping off beds. However this creak free status only applies to people walking around like angels not the normal crash and bang of daily family life.

twub

The NHBC writes an interesting document (propaganda?) for the builders, which claims noisy floors, deflection etc are normal. However, privately to the builder, they advise them the common causes of this very common problem and tells them how to avoid it, as well as informing them (as they know) how very expensive these issues can be to fix after occupation.

Vibration - aka bouncy, springy.
Deflection - from floor board, or from floor joists - they are different things.
Noisy - ignoring lack of insulation, cracking, squeaking sounds, especially those heard from below.
Unlevel - usually only spotted under a door.

These issues can often require floor strengthening, usually in the form of joist bridging. Having spent nearly 4 years, just to get the builder to admit to the issue onsite, I suspect it to be a long time before they actually fix it.

Investigations have been delayed, we have been misled, and unsurprisingly the builder in our case has a 10 year history (of denial, delay, and fixing whole estate). Every site I visited had the same issue. Now on our estate, 80% are being fixed or due to be fixed - although we await proper methodical professional action. The other 20% covers the show home (strange it was the only home unaffected), and home that were already fixed or settled, or were not interested in the hassle of pursing a fix.

I will be posting detailed information in the near future to help others with this type of issue.

My suggestion is to get it fixed, and use someone other than the builder (e.g. NHBC or your own surveyor) to give the professional opinion.

The lowest specification of I-Beam Joist has a Serviceability Index of 1.00, the builder used an SI of 1.06 on ours, yet they claimed 'highest specification', amongst other things. Buyers and Surveyors are starting to be more aware, certain floor issues should not be present, despite what the builder claims.
 

Gabalini

New Member
Open the floor in noisy area ( decent size hole to work in approx 600x400mm )

Cleat from top of I beam to bottom while mate pushes up the ceiling from below, use expanding wood glue and 2 inch spax. You're welcome p.s don't let anyone scam you into big messy fix, buy a battery drill, jigsaw, gorilla glue, 2x4s ( to replace hatch with cleats ) D I Y.
 
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