If you live in front of a busy street or just need extra peace inside your home, you’re probably tired of the constant noise from blaring stereos, garbage truck rounds, the buzz from pedestrians, and bouts of squealing car horns. While you cannot control street activity, you can consider soundproofing your house to reduce the noise.
Whether it’s your study room, bedroom, or your living room, you need to relax in your house after a hectic day at work. However, with constant noise pouring in, it is impossible to relax in peace. Here are a few effective soundproofing solutions for your house.
1. Seal Cracks and Holes on Inner Surfaces
The crevices and cracks on your walls and floor let sound vibrations in. Start by inspecting your house with scrutiny to find as many cracks and crevices as you can. Pay attention to every element within your house, which includes openings, walls, ventilation grates, ceilings, electrical sockets, and window frames. Attach rubber sealants or treat the crevices with caulk. If you notice certain cracks that cannot be treated, cover them up with heavy furniture. In extreme cases, hire a professional to cover up the crevices with plaster.
2. Treat your Openings
Your doors and windows let a lot of noise in. Most of the time, these openings are hollow due to cheap construction. You can treat your space by installing a double-pane window or attaching weathering strips on the frames. If possible, install PVC frames on a triple-paned window opening. Consider comfort overlooks and opt for tight double-pane openings instead of the slider French windows during construction or renovation. If you have the luxury, install new high-quality doors around the house. These doors are usually made of solid wooden panels that effectively block sound and provide privacy.
3. Treat your Ceiling and Walls
Attach acoustic panels on your walls to reduce sound, and are usually made of layers of sound-absorbing materials such as fiberglass, open-cell foam, or mineral wool enclosed in a wooden frame. Another easy way to reduce noise within a space is by adding an extra layer of drywall. However, this is only possible if your house is under construction or going through a renovation. A drywall made with heavy materials will block the vibrational frequencies, thus making the space quieter.
To treat your ceiling, install perforated panels within your false ceiling. These sheets are known for their excellent sound-absorbing properties. If you have a higher spending limit, the interior designers at Silent Home Hub recommend looking for materials with acoustic ratings that provide a professional finish. Such retrofitting treatment styles are increasing in demand due to their exceptional properties. While treating your ceiling and walls is of utmost importance, treating your floor with an insulated material also helps. Get your hardwood floors checked and fix the loose boards to seal incoming noise.
4. Install Thick, Soundproof Curtains and Rugs
A simple and inexpensive way to block sound is to install a heavy layer of fabric within the room. Soundproof curtains are made with layers of fabric that absorb sound and reduce its transmission across rooms.
Thick rugs laid on the floor can also act as a protective layer that effectively blocks sound vibrations. It is an economical option that also provides a luxurious touch to your home. Since curtains and rugs can change the look of your space, make sure that they are aligned with your décor theme or color palette of your home interior.
5. Install a Bookcase
A bookcase is not only an effective way to make any space quieter but also acts as an accessory to enhance the décor of your room. It keeps noise down and acts as a partial divider between spaces. This trick is a quick fix if you are rattled by your neighbor’s daily rants and wish to sleep in peace. Make sure that the case is filled with books to tone down the incoming sound.
6. Get a White Noise Machine
If your baby is unable to sleep due to sound leakage, consider installing a white noise machine that effectively veils unwanted noise. While it is not exactly a soundproofing solution, it does shield undesirable noise by producing calming sound effects like a gushing waterfall or blowing wind. Lastly, if you are planning to strip your house down for renovation, consider installing resilient channels between the walls. These Z-shaped strips are excellent sound blockers that form a decoupled wall.
Types of Soundproofing Materials
You can select from a variety of soundproofing materials for a wide range of applications.
The ideal use cases for each of these materials vary, and they all function according to one or more of the above soundproofing principles.
Let’s go over them in greater detail to emphasize important elements of the information and how and when they should be used:
Acoustic Isolation Membrane
There are many “acoustic membranes” available, some of which are superior to others. The unique Acoustiblok Isolation Membrane, which is the thinnest and most effective material currently on the market, mm for mm, is the most advanced in its category. Because it is far lighter, it can convert more acoustic energy thermally into heat energy, which is less challenging to convey via itself.
This material, which comes in thicknesses of 3 mm and 6 mm, is frequently put inside floors, walls, and ceilings to lessen the impact and airborne noise.
remarkably, it is perfect for sound insulation and helps to stop sound transfer more effectively than a sheet of lead. Due to its polymer foundation, it is exceedingly flexible, adjustable, and simple to install.
It provides efficient acoustic insulation without, for instance, thickening the walls or ceiling or adding unnecessary weight.
Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV), a few other materials, is merely a rubber compound impregnated to increase mass and density. These materials are substantially heavier and heavily rely on the deflective concept.
Open Cell Cavity Insulation
This substance is frequently made of rock wool, stone wool, mineral wool, or fiberglass and is put in cavities. An example of stone wool is QuietFibre.
Their employment of the sound-absorbing concept and tight fit between wall studs, ceilings, and floors makes them ideal.
As a result, the airspace that is often present in these regions will be efficiently packed out, which will hinder or significantly restrict sound transmission.
Based on the idea of decoupling the materials used for sound transmission.
- Resilient channels – Simple wooden boards to aluminum metal rails that are specifically made to lie over soundproof insulation can be found in a variety of styles and are put across wall studs or ceiling joists.
- Acoustic Hangers – These isolation mounts serve as a seal between the main structure and the resilient channel or cross batten and are mechanically attached to the main structure.
Here, the decoupling principle is applicable. This substance is used to minimize noise transmission by separating the main floor surface from the subfloor.
For example, Acoustiblok, cork, felt, and rubber-based crumb are typical materials for acoustic flooring.
To lessen the sound that enters or exits a place where they are installed, certain types of soundproof windows use the decoupling concept. Typically, these windows have air trapped between each layer of glass and thick glass panes.
This is an additional kind of architectural soundproofing method. Similar to soundproof windows, soundproof doors are made with the intention of reducing sound transmission by increasing depth and bulk as well as decoupling.
These panels, also known as AcoustiCloud Panels and AcoustiWall Absorber Panels, are another type of sound-absorbing board that are always positioned on or near the surface of ceilings and walls. Again, these are primarily used to equalize and calibrate interior acoustics.
When properly positioned, they cover enough volume and surface area, are aesthetically beautiful, and are moderately effective.
As a decorative substitute for acoustic foam, acoustic panels are available in a variety of colors, forms, and patterns.
Acoustic fabrics are a very thick sort of fabric that are effective when it comes to dealing with acoustics in large rooms or halls. They are frequently used for theater curtains, blackout curtains, and studio blankets. Additionally, they are utilized as a wall lining in spaces like theaters to improve acoustic equalization.
Wall mounted foam panels that can be flat, chamfered, convoluted, wedged, or have pyramidal shapes projecting from them compose acoustic foam, also known as studio foam. They primarily aid in enhancing audio quality in recording studios and music rooms.
Since acoustic foam relies on the idea of sound absorption and readjusting interior acoustics, it is less effective at blocking sound than other materials.
Internal acoustics and audible values should be significantly altered by them, but if you’re seeking a soundproofing solution, there are far superior materials to take into consideration.
It’s important to keep in mind that these foams come in different thicknesses and densities, and that, together with proper location, has a big impact on how well they work and perform. The kind and size of the surface area that needs to be covered should also be considered.
Best Soundproof Materials
As we’ve already mentioned, soundproofing materials come in a wide variety of shapes and types. For the finest outcomes, it’s important to understand how and where to use them.
To get the finest effects, it goes without saying that you should also take into consideration the caliber of the specific soundproofing material you intend to employ.
The top soundproofing products on the market are listed below, along with suggestions for how to utilize each one:
Different types of acoustic membrane are available; some are greater performing and significantly heavier than others.
These come in a variety of thicknesses and are rated by various dB reduction values at various Hz frequencies.
It’s crucial to make wise choices because their application and efficacy will be impacted by the thicknesses and weight.
- Uses: It performs well when it comes to decreasing sound transference, making it excellent as a sound insulation membrane.
- Pros: Low impact on already-existing structures like walls and ceilings, simple installation, and long-lasting.
- Cons: Some are quite heavy due to increased bulk, which has the opposite effect. Although some brands are more pricey, you generally get what you pay for, as that saying goes.
Acoustic mineral wool cavity insulation
Mineral, rock, or stone wool insulation, like QuietFibre, is essentially an open cell insulation material that is excellent at absorbing both thermal and acoustic energy.
This very hard material, which is generally utilized in stud walls and other cavities, is available in a variety of thicknesses and densities and is employed in both residential and commercial constructions since it is reasonably priced.
In addition to being excellent at absorbing thermal and acoustic energy, it is also quite helpful for filling cavities—perhaps even more so. This keeps the cavity from being an open, resonant hole that resembles a cave and could cause acoustic energy to be amplified. It is simple to cut even though it is fairly hard.
- Uses: To create acoustic panels, bass traps, and soundproofing insulation in a variety of settings, including residential and commercial buildings.
- Pros: Natural, inexpensive, and resistant to dampness and fire.
- Cons: To be effective on its own, the subject matter must be quite in-depth. Cutting creates slivers that can lodge in the skin or be breathed and irritate the lungs. Therefore, protective breathing equipment must be worn.
Soundproof fiberglass is available in boards or slabs rather than rolls, and it can be employed in a variety of settings and contexts, including the creation of acoustic panels for use in commercial buildings, theaters, and home recording studios.
In addition to improving interior acoustics, this soundproofing material is particularly excellent at reducing noise that enters or exits a room.
You can select from a variety of varieties with varying thicknesses, densities, and strengths. For instance, boards in the 703 and 705 series are better suited to eliminating high-frequency disturbances than low-frequency bass noises.
- Uses: Extremely adaptable; used in theaters, home theaters, recording studios, and anywhere else where soundproofing is required.
- Pros: Suited for a number of frequency ranges, available in various thicknesses, and simple to cut.
- Cons: When handling, safety equipment must be worn because it is known to be irritating.
The major method for separating drywall from interior building structures is via resilient sound channels.
In order to further lessen vibration, this system can also be equipped with acoustic hangers or gaskets.
Resilient sound channels are strips of metal or wood that are placed to the walls in order to maintain the integrity of the soundproof insulation within the walls and to serve as a foundation for all finishing systems.
The direct contact that would ordinarily exist through the levels of the structure—walls, ceilings, and floors—is eliminated as an outcome.
These channels are simple to install since they have multiple holes or gaps that screws can travel through to ensure easier screwing.
Any sounds that enter the room will essentially continue to vibrate against the resilient sound channels, isolating them from the surrounding space.
- Uses: Due to their ability to achieve excellent soundproofing in a building using decoupling principles, they are frequently used during construction.
- Pros: Comparatively simple to install, with useful gaps and holes
- Cons: Despite being inexpensive, installation may take a while if a large surface area needs to be covered.
Acoustic hangers (mounts)
The purpose of sound isolation clips is to enable a decoupling separation between the walls, ceiling, and supporting joists and studs.
These moulded rubber and steel isolation clips are used to control sound and are designed to reduce vibration through a structure.
- Uses: For treating impact and airborne noise in wall, ceiling, and floor applications.
By minimizing unwelcome noise coming from both inside and outside of your home, effective soundproofing solutions can significantly improve its comfort and privacy. There is a multitude of soundproofing options described above. You may create a tranquil and calm living area that you and your family can enjoy by choosing the right solution depending on your unique demands and budget.