Not many people know how to soundproof a room. But most people also believe that you need to hire a professional to soundproof a room. The truth is that you can soundproof a room on your own in just one day.
That said, calling a professional should never be out of the question. If you can afford it, then having a contractor soundproof your room can save you a lot of time, effort, and headache. So go for it! Otherwise, follow these instructions.
Why To Soundproof Your Room
There are many reasons to soundproof a room. If you live in an apartment, you probably want to soundproof your room to prevent disturbing the neighbors and vice versa. If you own your home, there are still many reasons to do so.
If you are planning on recording songs, playing music, or doing another hobby that requires silence, soundproofing a room is a must. But it can also be used for recreational reasons, such as giving someone privacy.
Soundproofing a bedroom can help with outside noises getting in, and give you the freedom you seek. You won’t disturb anyone outside of a room that is completely soundproof. This can be quite liberating.
How To Soundproof A Room
Now it’s time to get into the details of how to soundproof a room. Soundproofing a room works much better in rooms with four walls and a door. So avoid trying to soundproof open concept homes.
You can still try to, but unless weather-proofed well, it simply won’t keep outside noises out. The more closed in the space is, the easier it is to soundproof. That’s why soundproof pods are so popular.
You can build them outside your home in a storage building for some private space. The space can be used to take naps, play music, or work on projects. It’s a safe place to spend alone in a relaxing way.
The easiest way to soundproof floors is to put a rug pad under your rug. But to do that, you need to add a rug that covers your entire floor. This is a quick way to reduce sound incoming and outgoing.
However, there is a more effective way. But it does involve redoing your floors. You can add a soundproof layer, or underlayment, between the baseboards of your floor and the flooring you choose. This is usually a mat or interlocking tiles.
Finally, make sure that there aren’t any holes or gaps along the edge of the floor. If there are, fill them with caulk.
If you need to soundproof the lower story of your home, then insulate the lower ceilings. This is the easiest and most efficient way to soundproof your ceiling. You can try using floor methods but try this first.
You can also soundproof the upper level of your house by adding more standard insulation. You can also add a layer of thin sound insulation board. But soundproofing an upper level isn’t as effective as a lower one.
Soundproofing walls is the most common type of soundproofing. Most sound travels through walls rather than floors and ceilings. The best way to soundproof walls is to make sure windows and doors are sealed.
Then, make sure that all walls, even inside ones, are insulated. You can also add a sound insulation board between the base wall and the drywall or other outer wall. This comes in two pieces. One that absorbs sound, and one that insulates it.
Soundproofing Your House
If you do have an open concept home and still want to soundproof, it is possible. Follow the instructions above but focus more on doors and windows than walls and floors. Weatherproof your door for best results.
Make sure that it is airtight. This can help with both soundproofing and heating/cooling your home. So even if you’re not soundproofing, take steps to make sure around windows and doors is airtight.
How To Soundproof A Room In An Apartment
Soundproofing a room in an apartment is no different than soundproofing any other room. The only difference is that you have to ask your landlord before changing anything. Only temporary things are allowed without consultation.
How To Soundproof A Room Cheaply
While a full soundproof can be expensive, there are plenty of ways to soundproof a room on a budget. They may not be as effective as full-blown soundproofing, but it can be helpful in the end if you can’t afford anything else.
Soundproofing Floors On A Budget
The cheapest way to soundproof a floor is to lay down layers of floor mats and rugs. This is a reliable way to partially soundproof a floor. You should lay the floor mat underneath the rug and cover it with the rug.
Soundproofing Ceilings On A Budget
There is no easy way to soundproof a ceiling. Adding a drop ceiling is the easiest way, but it will cost you. Getting acoustic foam may be cheaper but it usually needs something to cover it to be appealing.
Soundproofing Walls On A Budget
Soundproofing walls can be easier. You can start with simple steps like putting bookcases against the wall. If you can afford something a bit more, then you can add a simple wall covering which will help minimize sound. Every layer helps.
Products To Help You Soundproof A Room
You can buy most soundproofing products at a hardware or music store. But there are a few deals that are hard to pass up. Here are some soundproofing products that are must-haves.
These foam tiles are perfect for that music room. They can reduce incoming sound, but their main purpose is to absorb sound being thrown in the room. There are six colors to choose from. Do a solid color or mix and match.
This rug pad is made to go under your rug. It can help reduce the sound being sent to the floor below you and vice versa. There are twenty-one sizes, so you never have to worry about cutting your own.
This may be the cheapest thing you can soundproof your walls with. They are vinyl tiles that stick on your wall in seconds. There are three colors to choose from and each tile is under ten cents a piece. That’s a steal!
These foam tiles are a little more expensive than the wall paneling, but they are worth it. They come in eight different wood grains. Though they are foam, they look almost like the real thing so you don’t have to cover them.
This cork roll can be put underneath floors, walls, and ceilings. So you can sue it for your entire room. There does need to be a layer over it, so it’s best to use this roll when building your rooms and putting up walls.
If you want curtains that reduce incoming light, noise, and disturbances, you won’t find any that are better than these. They darken the room and come in three colors so you can have the warmth or coolness that you want.
Here are the most frequently asked questions about soundproofing.
What’s The Difference Between Acoustic Treatment And Soundproofing?
Acoustic treatment is designed for playing music. The point is to not only prevent the sound from entering the room but from traveling around the room. The focus is to control sound within the room.
But with soundproofing, the point is to control the sound coming into or leaving the room. Acoustic treatment increases the quality of sound while soundproofing reduces the sound altogether, focusing on minimizing disturbances.
What Is Airborne And Impact Noise?
Airborne sounds travel through the air. Sounds like these include people talking, dogs barking, and trains whistling. Impact sound is made through contact and vibrations through objects. Footsteps, balls bouncing, and banging pipes are impact noises.
What’s The Difference Between Insulation And Absorption?
Sound insulation is used to block sound and stops it from entering a room. Sound absorption absorbs sounds within a room, stopping them from echoing. Use both for recording studios and insulation for blocking incoming sounds.
Can I Partially Cover A Surface To Soundproof It?
Of course, partially covering a surface can help. But you can’t completely soundproof a room without giving it the full treatment. If your goal is to reduce sound then go ahead and partially cover it with an added layer.
How Can I Test A Soundproof Job?
You can easily test exactly how much sound is in a room by getting a decibel reader. A decibel is a unit of measurement used to measure sound. A 20 on the scale is a whisper while a 170 is a shotgun. Most sounds will be between these two.
For best results, test a certain sound both before and after soundproofing.