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in Problem solving
First post here so I really hope someone can help.
We're looking at buying a house where the garden backs on to a busy main road. Currently, there is a wall with top half being wooden fence between the garden and the footpath that goes along the road, however, when viewing the house, this appeared to be totally inadequate.
I've read that planting a dense hedge of treas, etc, will help, but the garden's not really big enough to accommodate that, so I was just wondering if anyone could advise a possible solution?
Hi, I would go along to the local garden centre and see what they can advise.They can show you different trees and hedges. And being local they could help you with what grows well in your local soil.
If you want to save on space, try attaching some roofing or sound insulation blocks to your fence and then put another fence or trellis panels in front of that. That would be about 6 to 8 inches thick in total. We've recently had a new roof done and they took off the old tiles then attached slabs of insulation about 10cms thick and 1m20 by 4m on the outside of the beams and framework then put the new tiles on that.
It would be quick and easy and you could always top it with decorative planks of some sort to finish it and protect the insulation from rain.
However sound will rise above the fence so you may want to consider taller posts for the inside fence so you can attach trellis or wires and train climbers up there or support a hedge on stilts to give you privacy from the road - and any passing double deckers - as well as cut down noise.
There is a noise reducing fence (acoustic barrier fence) and they do make a difference. About 8ft tall and solid wood. The cost depending on length is much higher than adding hedging. The acoustic barrier will take up little less room than a wall does.
Is it possible to build up the wall to 2 metres? That should reduce some noise and you will get used to the road noise after a few weeks.
It all depends on what size garden you have gazfocus but i recommend a row of Dogwood with Himalayan Silver Birch in front. The red contrasts with the white and looks fantastic in the winter months. The other months are just as amazing.
I am 200 yards from the A52 where it joins the M1. Its very useful for work, because I can access Notts, Derbs or Sth Yorks quickly. However, 20 years on, I am not still used to the noise. The house is double glazed, which reduces noise in the house, but the garden is another matter. An ipod and Bose noise cancelling headphones work.
If you don't like the noise now, (and visit it again during peak traffic flow,) I wouldn't buy it, but look for somewhere else if you like peace and quiet.
I've read somewhere that bamboo is very good at sound muffling. Maybe you could google it and see if you can find out if it's true?
I have to agree with fidget. You may be able to reduce the noise but there will never be peace.
I can cope with a busy road at the front of our house, but couldn't cope if noise spread to the back where most of my garden is. My OH always complains about traffic noise but I think he decided it was noisey from day one. In the back I hear birds, grasses blowing, bamboo etc. I don't hear the traffic unless H talks about it.
Will say, that if you have doubts don't buy.
Mental attitude to the noise is more important than the number decibels. If you don't like traffic noise, don't buy
I would suggest you also visit the house at night, before you buy and see what the noise is like. Park in the road and listen. Will you be able to stand the noise when you have the windows open in the summer? When you want to be in the garden?
Hedges (much better at filtering noise than walls) are a possibility, but they do take time to grow and thicken up.
Thanks for all the really useful thoughts and opinions.
The issue with not buying is that my wife has fallen for the house (she fell for it before we even viewed it), so not buying it really isn't an option. The same house would also cost us approx £50k more in a quieter area.
When we viewed the house, it was 12noon on a Saturday so is expected to be busier than normal. I am not expecting to be able to remove the road noise completely but if I can reduce it by 50% somehow, that would make the garden much nicer.
Perhaps you should think of using noises in your garden to counteract the noise from the road. Bamboo does have a rustling sound, wooden wind chimes are more pleasant than traffic, there are various grasses that make rustle sounds etc.
To be honest the sound of wind chimes is not pleasanter than any sound. They are an abomination.
Would you have room for a water feature of some sort? It might help to mask the road noise a bit.
gazfocus, soz to be unhelpful but I think 12 noon on a Sat was a quiet time. What about 7am on a weekday morning and 4.30pm to 6.30pm in the week? Hopefully you will be off to work at those peak times. Do hope you don't eventually think the 50K wasn't worth the noise.
Please go back at a peak time and see what traffic is about.
I have lived next to a busy main road and I have to say in the end it started to affect my heatlh as there was never any let up from the noise. It was also difficult to open the windows in the summer as well
One I think I also noticed that when it rained, the noise of the tarmac was incrediable I had a lovely garden but the traffic noise spoilt my enjoyment of it. I do think it would be worth another look at a different time of day. In my time at the property I did notice an increase in the traffic so that might be worth having a think about as well. Sorry to be negative