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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  • 1. Q Can acoustical ceilings be repainted? How?
  • A

    Most Armstrong ceilings and walls can be repainted by spraying, for touch-up refer to Touch-up Paint. Please Note: Vinyl or Mylar or Bioguard laminated products should not be painted.

     

     
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  • 2. Q What are the painting precautious that I should be aware?
  • A

    Armstrong cannot guarantee that the published surface burning characteristics, fire resistance ratings, acoustical performance, dimensional stability/sag, or light reflectance will remain the same after repainting. Field painting will void the warranty.

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  • 3. Q Will it void the warranty?
  • A

    Armstrong recognizes that ceilings are occasionally repainted and will make recommendations for the type of paint that may be used. Armstrong is unable to be responsible for the finished appearance or performance for the ​ field-painted acoustical material.

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  • 4. Q What type of paint should we use in event minor 'touching up' work is required?
  • A

    A good grade of paint from a reputable manufacturer should be used. With the computerized color matching systems now available, it is recommended that a sample of the ceiling panel to be color matched be taken to the paint store.

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  • 5. Q Are there general instructions on the standard for installing a suspended ceiling?
  • A

    Actual installation method shall be in accordance with applicable local government or building construction codes or standards although Armstrong reference it's installation standard to ASTM C636. For general handling & maintenance instruction for Armstrong Ceilings, an instruction is available on general installation & grids method.

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  • 6. Q Why acoustic ceilings stain easily in event of HVAC leaks?
  • A

    It should be considered as a functional feature! The insulation of HVAC might be worn or ducting integrity are degraded overtime which results in leaks. Visible surface stains usually occurs after [a significant of leakage] x [ time ], and the symptom would suggest abnormal functionality above which lead to poor indoor air quality, possible encourage the growth of mold & mildew above plenum. All molds require water, dampness and high humidity to grow. Do you expect a FOREST of mold growing above the ceiling tiles without any pre-emptive symptoms?

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  • 7. Q Why RH99 and why 49 degree Celsius?
  • A

    Pre-construction; Temperature contrast when building envelop are up and HVAC is not running; HVAC are cycled.

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  • 8. Q What are the typical costs for Armstrong installed ceilings?
  • A

    The cost of an installed Armstrong ceiling will depend upon many factors such as the room's size and shape, ceiling height and any change of levels and, of course, the ceiling type selected. Our distributor will be able to give guide prices, for budget.  The typical install cost covers standard installation suspending not more than 1200mm from slab, regular day work and does not cover scaffolding cost (if required) and any other special request in order to project.

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  • 9. Q What is the estimated installation time for Armstrong ceilings?
  • A

    The installation time for any Armstrong ceiling will depend upon many factors such as the room's size and shape, ceiling height and any change of levels, ceiling type, if any furniture or other obstructions are present and how many fixers are used. The ceiling contractor employed for the project will be able to provide this information.

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  • 10. Q I do not want to see an exposed grid; what suitable Armstrong ceiling systems do you have for this?
  • A

    For a less cluttering visual, you can consider planks with either SL2 or K2C2 edges or Armstrong Techzone. Armstrong Plank systems (Fine Fissured, Dune, Ultima range) are also available with SL2 edges, while for metal tiles, the 'clip-in' or 'hook-on' systems do not does not expose the grids. Vector' edge tiles will also provide a neat solution with 6mm reveal between tiles without exposing grids.

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  • 11. Q How long can Armstrong hanger systems be?
  • A

    The maximum length of any wire hanger is governed by the ability to pre-straighten it. The length does not affect its tensile strength nor load carrying capacity. The maximum length of Armstrong other hanger systems is determined by the length of the components and any connection accessories available. If a wire or suspension angle hanger has to be joined in length, care should be taken to ensure that the failure strength of the mechanical jointing method used is not less than the admissible load of any of the relevant grid connector accessories, information for which is published in the Armstrong accessories manual.

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  • 12. Q Which hangers should be used for supporting a Metal Clip-in ceiling?
  • A

    Clip-in tiles are installed by pushing them upwards into the concealed spring bar. Therefore any hangers used must be sufficiently rigid to resist the upward forces and, in this respect, wire or similar thin hangers are not recommended.

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  • 13. Q What hanger top fixings should I use?
  • A

    Armstrong does not give recommendations for top fixings/soffit cleat as it depends upon the exact nature of the soffit material and construction, as well as the ceiling's applied load. In all cases, care should be taken to ensure that the pull-out strength of the top fixing used is not less than the admissible load for the hanger which is published in the accessories manual Further more appropriate advice may be available from the various manufacturers of top fixings such as Fischer, Hilti etc.

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  • 14. Q Should I offset the hangers on adjacent main runners of Armstrong exposed T grid system?
  • A

    Unless the specification requires this (perhaps because there are regular obstructions in the void), there is no structural or aesthetic reason for doing this.

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  • 15. Q What is the minimum void depth for installing suspended ceilings?
  • A

    The answer to this question is dependent upon two factors, namely the tile and grid system used, and the practical consideration of the installer being able to get his hands into the void to connect the hangers to the main runners. For 'lay-in' tile systems, where the tile is offered up through the grid before being dropped into place, and conversely removed, about 150mm from the soffit to the top of the main runner bulb, is necessary. For 'Vector' edge tiles which are installed from below the grid, less 'maneuvering' height is necessary, so grid installation considerations will dictate.
    Of course services in the void, such as ducts, pipes or electrical trunking may override these limits.

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  • 16. Q What are the centres of the cross-tee connection holes in Armstrong main runner?
  • A

    These vary depending upon the main runner type and length, so full details are given for the different types that we supply in the Armstrong suspension system brochure. In general, MOST slot rout are punched at 100mm centres.

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  • 17. Q What is the overall height of Armstrong exposed grid sections?
  • A

    This depends upon the section considered so all necessary dimensional details are given in each Armstrong suspension system brochure. The overall height will range from 25mm to 43mm.

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  • 18. Q How can I connect Armstrong suspended ceiling with a gypsum board perimeter margin?
  • A

    If both the ceiling and the perimeter margin are at the same level then Armstrong Axiom Transitions allow for perfect integration of both materials. If the plasterboard margin is above or below the ceiling level then Armstrong Axiom Classic Profile provide a very neat solution. If necessary, Armstrong Axiom Profile sections can be joined together vertically to provide the required difference in height. Alternative, Armstrong is also able to provide a DGS integration solution using normal flat 24mm tee grids.

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  • 19. Q At what centres should the perimeter trim be fixed?
  • A

    450  is normal practice but actual site conditions will dictate what is appropriate for the circumstances, provided that the trim's load/spanning capacity is not exceeded.

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  • 20. Q At room corners, I form dummy mitres on perimeter trims by cutting one side at 45° and lapping a square cut piece on to it. Is this OK?
  • A

    This is a practicable detail but you should check to see whether the specification or your customer allows or contradicts your proposal.

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  • 21. Q Should I reseal the cut edges of Armstrong mineral fibre products? If so what paint should I use?
  • A

    This may depend upon where the tiles are to be used. For example, in food manufacturing, preparation and eating areas, resealing may be appropriate to prevent loose fibres migrating into the atmosphere. You should consult further with the specifier if the written specification is not clear.
    If cut edges do need resealing on-site, we recommend the use of a PVA adhesive used for building applications, mixed with water in the ratio 1:1 or as is sufficient to make the solution suitably viscous for applying by brush. If the cut edges will be visible and need to match the tile's face colour, then the PVA will provide a good primer coat for the decorative coat.

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  • 22. Q How can I cut Armstrong tiles at perimeters?
  • A

    Armstrong mineral fibre tiles can be cut, and if necessary, a new tegular edge reformed, with a sharp craft knife. If required these cut edges can then be repainted. Armstrong metal tiles are best cut with shears or a band saw suitable for sheet metal.

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  • 23. Q Armstrong’s normal recommendation for exposed grid hanger spacings is 1200mm. Can this be increased?
  • A

    Yes, it may be possible depending upon the grid system used and the tile selected, so full details of grid load capacities for normal grid layouts are given for the different types that we supply in the Armstrong suspension brochure. For special 'nonstandard' layouts, your technical representative will be able to provide further information of possible hanger spacings.

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  • 24. Q What is the maximum weight of a sign that I can hang from Armstrong ceiling?
  • A

    This will depend upon how close together the signs will be located, where on the grid they are suspended and, of course, the grid type. Armstrong supplies specific accessories which allow fixing to exposed grids but you will need to contact your technical representative for specific advice on loadings.

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  • 25. Q What’s the maximum weight of tile that I can put into an Armstrong exposed grid?
  • A

    This will depend upon the type of exposed grid used, so full details of grid load capacities for normal grid layouts are given in the Armstrong grids brochure.

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  • 26. Q What is the maximum weight of lighting fitting that can be supported on Armstrong grid?
  • A

    There is no simple answer to this as it will depend on several factors such as: if the fittings are supported on the grid bulb or flange, supported on the main runner, primary cross tee or secondary cross tee? How ever Armstrong has a datasheet which gives detailed guidance and this can be calculated from your technical representative.

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  • 27. Q Can Armstrong ceilings support the weight of luminaires and air grilles?
  • A

    Luminaires can normally be supported on the ceiling grid subject to certain qualifications. Armstrong has a datasheet which outlines our recommendations that is available from your technical representative. Dynamic fittings such as active air grilles should not be supported directly onto the grid because vibration in the grilles could be transferred to the grid and generate unacceptable noise.

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  • 28. Q Can Armstrong ceiling tiles support the weight of a small diameter spotlight?
  • A

    There is no simple answer to this question as it is is very dependent upon the size and weight of the spotlight and the type of tile to be used. Essentially Armstrong tiles are designed to support only their own weight so Armstrong recommends that you conduct a trial, using samples of spotlight and tile, before the installation commences. If the weight of the spotlight causes excessive deflection or damage to the tile, you can consider using a plasterboard pattress laid onto the back of the tile to spread the load back to the grid flanges.

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  • 29. Q How can I establish if a tile is square?
  • A

    Measure across the face or back diagonals. Perfectly "square" tiles will have identical dimensions.

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  • 30. Q Can I use Armstrong tiles with another manufacturer's grid system?
  • A

    Armstrong tiles are specifically designed and manufactured for use with Armstrong Prelude suspension grid systems and all of Armstrong verifiable technical performance values, such as acoustics, fire, humidity resistance, loading, etc, are obtained under test conditions for our combined tile and grid systems. Therefore if you use Armstrong tiles with another manufacturer's grid you must determine their compatibility for yourself and please note that the system's technical and aesthetic performance cannot be warranted by Armstrong.

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  • 31. Q How do I install a thermal expansion joint into Armstrong ceilings?
  • A

    Armstrong do not supply expansion joints or provide specific details but recognise that they are sometimes required in larger building installations. Further technical information is available from your technical representative.

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  • 32. Q Which luminaires do Armstrong recommend for their exposed grid ceilings?
  • A

    Armstrong do not recommend nor endorse other manufacturer's products although we do recognise that certain fittings may be used with our ceilings. Armstrong understand that most major manufacturers have luminaires which are suitable for integration into modular demountable ceilings so you should seek further details from them about which fittings are compatible with the Armstrong tiles and grid that you wish to use.

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  • 33. Q Which Armstrong ceilings are suitable for use in wet or high humidity areas?
  • A

    Armstrong Ceramaguard Tiles and Metalworks tiles painted on both face and reverse surfaces, are suitable for use in conditions of up to 100% RH, which can occur internally in spaces such as swimming pools, showers, laundries and some manufacturing processes, although none of these tiles should be subjected to continuous direct water exposure.

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  • 34. Q Can Armstrong ceilings be used externally?
  • A

    The two main considerations relating to the use of suspended ceilings for external locations are humidity and wind loading. Two of Armstrong ceiling products, Ceramaguard and Metalworks (Exterior range) painted on both face and reverse surfaces, are suitable for use in conditions of up to 100% RH, which can occur externally, although none of these tiles should ever be subjected to direct precipitation. However, wind loading can potentially be equally as serious by exerting either a positive or a negative pressure on ceilings that could dislodge and damage both tiles and grid. Therefore, because wind forces can vary considerably depending upon both topographical and geographical locations, a thorough analysis should be undertaken by a structural/environmental engineer before an external installation is considered.

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  • 35. Q What causes "pattern staining" on a ceiling tile?
  • A

    Pattern staining on the face of a ceiling tile may be due to three adverse causes.

    1) Dirty water may have dripped onto the back of the tile and soaked through to the face causing discoloured stains. These will normally be yellow or brown in colour and probably due to ferric oxide (rust) contamination.

    2) Tiles in the immediate vicinity of air grilles or diffusers sometimes display black marks or streaks. This is due to dirt in the air being deposited on the tile's surface as the air emanates from or returns to the distribution system. Smooth tiles such as Plain or Orcal plain etc are less likely to be affected.

    3) Heat from a room will rise (due to convection) and migrate through a suspended ceiling towards the (normally) cooler ceiling void. Minute particles of dirt in the atmosphere will also rise and be deposited on the ceiling tile's surface. However if the thermal insulation of the tile is not consistent (as often occurs with metal tiles with mineral wool pads in the back, that are not carefully laid flat particularly at the corners) then the dirt will be deposited unevenly with a build-up at the "cold spots" and appear as straw, brown or grey coloured marks.

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  • 36. Q Can Armstrong tiles be repainted and if so what paint can you recommend?
  • A

    Armstrong do not recommend any paint for the complete redecoration of our ceilings. Armstrong do recognise that there are specialist companies who can offer a cleaning or redecoration service. However the decision to repaint Armstrong mineral fibre or metal tiles must be considered carefully because, depending upon the tile face pattern (fissures, perforations, scrim etc), the paint type used, and the thickness of the applied coat(s), the tile's technical performance, such as sound absorption, fire reaction, sag, light reflectance etc, may be adversly affected. If there is any doubt, then laboratory testing to assess any possible differences in technical and legislative performance should be conducted on repainted samples. It is unlikely that that the tiles will be able to be repainted while still in the grid but in all cases the advice of a professional paint sprayer should be obtained. It should be noted that the repainting of ceiling tiles supplied by Armstrong will invalidate any warranty.

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  • 37. Q I've got to do some touching up on a few of Armstrong mineral fibre tiles which the electrician has slightly damaged. What paint do you recommend ?
  • A

    Any formaldehyde free emulsion paint available from paint store may be suitable subject to colour matching.

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  • 38. Q My ceiling has become slightly soiled, how can I clean it?
  • A

    Armstrong recommended cleaning methods depend upon the type of tiles used and the degree of soiling encountered. Armstrong have a maintenance brochure which gives appropriate advice so please request a copy from your technical representative.

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  • 39. Q Which Armstrong ceilings provide good acoustic performance?
  • A

    This depends upon your definition of 'good' and whether it is sound absorption or sound attenuation that is your main application objective. Most Armstrong ceilings can provide acoustic control with balanced sound absorption and antenuation value.

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  • 40. Q I see a reference to NRC in Armstrong literature; what does this stand for?
  • A

    Noise Reduction Coefficient is a method for providing a single number rating of sound absorption. It is defined in ASTM C423 as the arithmetical average of the measured sound absorption coefficients for the four one-third octave band frequencies centred at 250, 500, 1000 & 2000 Hz, rounded to the nearest 0.05.

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  • 41. Q So what then is Alpha w (αw) as I thought this does the same thing as NRC?
  • A

    Alpha w (weighted sound absorption coefficient) is also a method for converting a wide frequency based range of sound absorption coefficient values into a single number but this is done using a curve fitting process. Although more complex to derive, Alpha w is considered to be more representative of how the human ear interprets sound. The method is fully described in EN ISO 11654 and has now become the preferred European unit for making a simple and rapid comparison of sound absorption performance.

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  • 42. Q Is there a direct correlation between NRC & Alpha w?
  • A

    No. Although they are both single number descriptors of sound absorption neither one can be deduced from the other as there is no direct relationship between them.

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  • 43. Q For ceiling tiles, how is Sound Absorption used?
  • A

    When applied to room surfaces or objects, sound absorptive materials reduce the reflection of sound that strikes them which helps to make a space seem less “echoey” or “lively” or, more technically, less reverberant. The ceiling plane is often the only one of substantial size, and relatively unobstructed, where sound absorption can be introduced. However sound absorptive materials are most effective at controlling reverberant sound when distributed between several room surfaces or objects rather than just being applied to one.

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  • 44. Q How can I stop a room being "echoey" ?
  • A

    Echoes are discrete sound reflections from a distant surface which, if they are of sufficient intensity and time delay, can be heard distinctly from the direct sound, ie you hear the same sound twice in quick succession. The expression “echoey” is often used to describe the sound heard in an enclosed space which is particularly reverberant or 'lively'. This is actually the wrong use of the term as, perhaps surprisingly, echoes are a rare phenomenon in most normal sized and occupied enclosed spaces. However excessive reverberation and noise can be controlled by the introduction of sound absorptive treatments, such as suspended acoustic ceilings.

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  • 45. Q What is reverberation time and how do Armstrong ceilings influence it?
  • A

     This is the time, in seconds, required for reflecting or reverberant sound in an enclosed space to decay to one-millionth (equivalent to a drop of 60 dB) of its original energy level after the cessation of the sound source. It is the most common, and easily obtained, measurement or predictor of a room’s potential sound quality. The reverberation time (RT) for any enclosed space will be influenced by the room's volume and how much sound absorption (which controls the reflection of sound) is present. Increasing the volume will increase the RT while increasing the amount of sound absorption will lower the RT. Because Armstrong suspended ceilings can provide a substantial surface area and can provide more or less sound absorption depending upon the product chosen, they can significantly influence the RT of a space. However any room will have an optimum reverberation time (RT) requirement depending upon its use and size and whether the main activity is speech or music based. Providing too much sound absorption, and hence having a very low reverberation time (RT), can be just as acoustically damaging and undesirable as having insufficient sound absorption when an excessively long reverberation time (RT) will result.

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  • 46. Q What is the effect of sound absorption on noise levels?
  • A

    Rooms with reasonable amounts of sound absorptive finishes appear quieter and less frenetic than those with little or no sound absorptive treatment. If the amount of effective sound absorption in a room is doubled (or halved), the noise level will be reduced (or increased) by 3dB (Decibels). However, it should be considered that a change of 3dB will only just be detected by the human ear, while a difference of 5dB is necessary to be really noticeable. In addition, sound absorptive treatments that are applied to the boundary elements (walls, ceilings, floors etc.) of a room, do not have any significant effect at enhancing the element’s sound reduction properties, ie when sound transmits through it from one adjacent room to another.

     

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  • 47. Q How can I calculate the reverberation time of space?
  • A

    By using a mathematical model based upon the 'Sabine' formula which takes into account the significant surfaces of a room, their respective sound absorption coefficients and the room dimensions. The acoustic module in "Estimate", provided by Armstrong to registered users, will enable a simple indicative calculation to be made. Alternatively, Armstrong website is also able to do a more detailed calculation which also considers specific user criteria.

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  • 48. Q What is a sabine and why would you use it?
  • A

    A sabine (also known as the equivalent absorption area) is measure of sound absorption afforded by a material which is defined as the product of its exposed surface area S (m2), multiplied by its random incident sound absorption coefficient alpha s. However the sabine is also specifically used to describe the total absorption provided by individual discrete objects, such as an acoustic canopy, cloud or baffle, where all of its surfaces may be influentially providing sound absorption and the use of as would not be sensible or realistic. Once the total sound absorption present in a room (from both planar surfaces and objects) has been calculated, an estimate can be made of the room's probable reverberation time. The installation of clouds and canopies in a reverberant space can significantly reduce the reverberation time and contribute to the reduction in background noise

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  • 49. Q Why would I use Armstrong acoustic canopies instead of a traditional wall-to-wall ceiling?
  • A

    Some trends in modern building technology, such as the use of concrete thermal slabs as heat-sinks, requires that the slab be exposed to the occupied space and therefore a continuous (wall to wall) ceiling, which could interfere with the airflow pattern, is not permissible. But the downside of not having an acoustic ceiling will probably result in higher reverberation times and increased noise levels above those which would be acceptable to the users. Also in many existing spaces, even though a continuous ceiling is present and has to remain in place for various technical reasons, it may provide insufficient sound absorption than is suitable for the activities undertaken. Therefore the installation of canopies in a reverberant space, in sufficient numbers and layout to satisfy both technical and aesthetic considerations, can significantly reduce the reverberation time and contribute to the reduction in background noise and improvement of aural comfort.

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  • 50. Q What is the speech frequency range and is it defined in any official standard?
  • A

    The speech frequency range is generally described as being between about 500Hz and 4000Hz. However it is not defined in any known national or international standard.

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  • 51. Q What is the difference between sound absorption and sound attenuation?
  • A

    Sound absorption relates to the control of sound reflections(Absorb) within a room while sound attenuation (Blocking) is associated with the sound transmission between adjacent rooms via a continuous suspended ceiling.

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  • 52. Q Will materials that provide high sound absorption also provide high sound reduction?
  • A

    Probably not. Materials that provide high levels of sound absorption are generally lightweight and porous which is the direct opposite of the qualities required for sound reduction ie massive and impervious.

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  • 53. Q Would repainting an Armstrong mineral fibre or metal tile change its acoustic performance?
  • A

    In terms of sound absorption there may be a small loss, depending upon the tile face pattern (fissures, perforations, scrim etc), the paint type used, and the thickness of the applied coat(s). It is unlikely that the ceiling's sound reduction or attenuation performance will be adversly affected but if the spaces where the ceiling has to be repainted are acoustically critical, then laboratory testing to assess any possible differences in acoustic performance should be conducted on repainted samples. It should be noted that the repainting of ceiling tiles could also adversly affect their other technical performance factors such as fire reaction, sag, light reflectance etc and the implication of such possible changes needs to be considered. Finally it should be appreciated that the repainting of any tiles supplied by Armstrong will invalidate any warranty that was provided when the tiles were new.

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  • 54. Q I thought decibels were for measuring noise levels so why do you use them for ceilings?
  • A

    The decibel is a unit used in acoustics to describe the magnitude of sound levels. These levels can either describe how loud something is (eg 85 dB due to a passing bus), or they can describe the ability of a product or system to reduce sound, eg a 35 dB suspended ceiling will reduce a sound level of 75 dB in one room down to 40 dB in an adjacent room. The bigger the number the greater is the sound energy level or sound difference involved.

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  • 55. Q Is there a difference between sound reduction and sound attenuation?
  • A

    Insofar that the terms 'reduction' and 'attenuation' both mean a decrease or lessening of something, then these expressions describe the same process and are usually interchangeable. In relation to the acoustics of suspended ceilings, 'sound reduction' is generally used to describe the 'single or vertical pass' decrease (typically from a ceiling cavity to a room below) while 'sound attenuation' is reserved for the 'double or horizontal pass' lessening in transmitted sound energy where the ceiling is continuous above two adjacent rooms.

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  • 56. Q What do your mineral fibre tiles consist of?
  • A

    Our mineral fibre tiles are made from a combination of the following naturally occuring, processed and recycled materials in varying proportions depending upon the tile type: mineral wool, clay, perlite, cellulose and starch mixed together in a water based process before being cured by heat. They are then finished with a water based paint, or laminated scrim and paint, decorative  facing. All these materials are environmentally safe and our factories comply with ISO 14001.

    Note: Asbestos, in any form, is not and never has been used in the manufacture of Armstrong ceiling tiles.

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  • 57. Q What is the difference between 'soft' and 'hard' mineral fibre ceilings?
  • A

    All of mineral fibre ceilings contain mineral wool in varying proportions. 'Soft' contain a high proportion and are therefore more porous, lower in density, and will be finished with a painted laminated scrim. This results in tiles with higher sound absorption (up to 0.9 NRC) although their sound blocking will be much more softer. In contrast 'hard' tiles will have lower proportions of mineral wool, higher proportions of clay, lower porosity and be higher in density. This still results in significant levels of sound absorption but sound attenuation can be exceptional ie up to 40 dB.

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  • 58. Q What RAL colour is the white paint on Armstrong mineral fibre tiles?
  • A

    Armstrong mix their own paint which is not an exact match to any RAL referenced colour although we recommend closest comparison for suspension system to be RAL9010. See question 70. below.

    We recommend that if precise colour matching between our tiles and other ceiling components is an issue, finished samples of all the critical elements should be compared before final orders are placed.

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  • 59. Q What is the RAL colour equivalent of Armstrong Peakform Steel grid?
  • A

    There is no direct RAL colour equivalent of Global White although the closest comparison is RAL 9010. We recommend that if precise colour matching between our grid and other ceiling components is an issue, finished samples of all the critical elements should be compared before final orders are placed.

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  • 60. Q What is the actual size of your 600x600mm mineral fibre tiles?
  • A

    The maximum dimensions should never be greater than 594x594mm although this would be subject to a small negative tolerance.

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  • 61. Q What does a 'nominal' dimension mean?
  • A

    Nominal refers to an approximate size, eg it does not take account of manufacturing tolerances. So a 15mm thick tile could be 14.6 -15.4mm actual. Similarly a 600x600mm tile refers to the layout module which includes the grid (bulb) thickness, so the maximum tile dimension will be 594x594mm but also subject to a a small negative manufacturing tolerance. 

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  • 62. Q What is the U value of your ceiling tiles?
  • A

    There is no such thing as the U value of an individual element, such as a suspended ceiling tile. The U value is a measure of the thermal transmittance of a complete element of structure (such as a roof construction) consisting of all its component parts. Our mainline brochure contains information on the thermal conductivity (λ) of our ceiling tiles and this can be used in the calculation of the U value of a structure by others (eg a M&E engineer).

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  • 63. Q What is the advantage of air movement through a ceiling void?
  • A

    It can remove moisture laden air that otherwise could condense out on cold surfaces and possible cause damage to the structure and suspended ceiling.

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  • 64. Q What is Relative Humidity and why is it important?
  • A

    This is a measure of the relative level of water saturation of the air (expressed on a 0-100 % scale) and is the ratio of the actual amount of water vapour in air compared with the saturation water vapour for a given temperature. Therefore %RH should always be quoted with a specific temperature.

    Within buildings humidity needs to be controlled in order to provide optimum conditions for:

    =- Human comfort and well-being

    =- Specific manufacturing/servicing processes

    =- Electronic equipment reliability

    =- Maintaining building fabric and materials in good condition

    =- Conserving energy

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  • 65. Q What is a vapour control layer?
  • A

    This is a construction material (usually a thin plastic membrane or similar) that substantially reduces the water vapour transfer through any building component in which it is incorporated. They may be found (or required) in ceiling voids that have little or no thermal insulation and where there is a danger of condensation falling onto the back of the ceiling and causing pattern staining or damage.

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  • 66. Q Can I use the ceiling void as a return air plenum? What's the best tile to use?
  • A

    In principle the ceiling void can be used as a return air plenum provided this is acceptable to the architect and/or M&E engineer. There is no "best" tile for this as it will depend upon the permitted air leakage through the ceiling. We have air leakage data for some of our ceilings. Our low density (soft fibre, eg: Optra range) ceilings are unlikely to be suitable because of their porosity.

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  • 67. Q What product do you recommend particularly for noise control in a high humidity area?
  • A

    Our Ceramaguard tile is suitable for use in conditions of up to 100% RH, and in addition offers sound absorption of 0.55 NRC. Such absorption, used in spaces where there is likely to be little or no other sound absoptive finishes, will make a substantial contribution in controlling middle and high frequency reverberant noise levels.

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  • 68. Q Should the ceiling grid be earthed or bonded?
  • A

    Armstrong have commissioned an independent report that concludes that in normal circustances our ceilings do not need to be earthed or bonded.

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  • 69. Q What do the clean room class ratings mean?
  • A

    The classes, according to ISO/TC209 14644-1, are a level of airborne particulate cleanliness. A Class 5 means that less than 3,520 particles (0.5 microns in size) are present per cubic meter, which equals 100 particles per cubic foot. A Class 6 indicates less than 35,200 particles per cubic meter. The higher the class number, the more particles present.The lower the class, the more stringent it is.

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  • 70. Q What product do we recommend for Cleanroom Application?
  • A

     CLEAN ROOM FL, CLEAN ROOM VL, Bioguard Acoustics are recommended for Class 4-5 clean room applications. PVC hold down clips are available but not required for clean room performance. Clean rooms Class 4 or less usually require 100% Hepa filter installations with the room design.

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