Apartment noises

Unfortunately, one negative aspect of NYC apartment living has reared its ugly head: the neighbors living below us are getting all kinds of uptight about noise coming from our apartment.

Granted, in some cases I can completely understand and sympathize… But this is getting ridiculous.

The first night of the season that the building heat came on, the boiler was making a bunch of loud, mechanical banging noises in the middle of the night. Few things are more frustrating than being woken up at 4:30 in the morning by strange, loud noises from the building machinery.

One thing that IS more frustrating, by the way, is having your neighbor accuse you of having made those noises, with vague suggestions that we might have been “working” or “unpacking” or something. Especially when you had already said that you had been woken up by it also, and had wondered what was causing it.

What’s even worse is when that suggestion that you were behind it comes up twice more in the same conversation.

Still, a simple misunderstanding… And when I ran into one of them a few days later at the entrance to the building, we discovered that we had apparently both later talked confirmed the source of the noise with the superintendent about it.

But then, problems persisted.

It’s an old apartment, and walking on the uncovered hardwood floors makes noise to the apartment below you. Walking heavily – or in Nala’s case, bounding around on the floor – can be heard by your downstairs neighbors.

So yeah, we’re shopping for some area rugs to cover sections of the floor where there’s a lot of foot/paw traffic. The fact that Sal now works at West Elm and gets a discount will help with that.

Charlotte friends may remember those metal wire kennels that we got for the dogs, because they collapse into a neat pile for easy storage or transportation. Unfortunately they also make one hell of a ruckus when the dogs are excited at seeing that they’re about to be let out, and plain ol’ rustling around in there makes a bunch of banging noises also.

So, we’re going to have to look for other kennel options to replace these, ’cause they’re just too loud. Sucks, because they were convenient, but it’s a sacrifice we’ll have to make in an effort to be considerate to our downstairs neighbors.

I’m starting to get paranoid, jumping at the slightest squeak of a floorboard or footfall on the floor. And if one of the dogs so much as twitches in a kennel and I can hear it, I’m terrified that the downstairs neighbors are going to be pissed.

There are times that I miss living above a small law firm, which was closed at night!

One Response to Apartment noises

  1. Kevin, my apartment on 35th and Broadway had the same banging radiators. It was absolutely horrible. I complained enough to where the landlord had maintenance drain something (my dad explained it to me as he is a plumber, but I don’t remember the details). This helped for a short while. The truth is that the system is so old it would probably take lots of money to fix the problem as opposed to treating it. So in the end I resorted to a really loud sound machine and ear plugs. I know what you are going through…

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