Soundproof windows can help out if you have trouble sleeping. Especially if the reason you can’t sleep is that the noises of the outdoors are too much for you, namely those street noises.
One of the easiest ways, yet often forgotten, to soundproof your house is to soundproof your windows. Soundproofing your windows is an important step so make sure you don’t forget them when soundproofing your home.
What Are Soundproof Windows?
Soundproof windows can refer to either a window that is soundproof naturally or windows that have been layered and sealed to cancel out sound. The methods are similar to the way one would soundproof a room.
You can seal it, put up barriers, and even use temporary means to get some relief from the sound. Some people simply move furniture in front of their windows as quiet is more important than a good view in their eyes.
But most of the time, something more than a dresser in front of the window is needed. We will go over both permanent and temporary solutions that can help you block out those street noises and get some sleep.
Installing Noise-Canceling Windows
One easy way to soundproof windows is to get laminated glass windows that are made to be soundproof. These windows can cancel nearly 100% of outside noises and block them from getting into your house.
This works because laminated glass has an extra protective layer of plastic that provides a sound barrier. Whereas other glass does not offer this soundproofing quality and sound can get through fairly easily.
So if you want a permanent solution that should be paired with sealing your windows, then get some good noise-canceling windows. You will probably need to hire a contractor for this job for practical reasons.
How To Soundproof Windows With Sealant
Soundproofing windows can mean a variety of things. But we are going to go over the surest way to soundproof windows in your home after you install new soundproof windows using caulk to seal the edges.
Here we have a short guide that will help you caulk your windows by first removing the old caulk and applying the new caulk the proper way. Don’t forget that this is just one step you can take, but it is the most important one.
Step 1: Ensure It Needs Re-Caulked
Unless there is no wind at all outside, you can hold a small flame up to the edges to find out if the air is passing through. If the flame moves, then air is passing through and the windows need to be caulked.
Another way to tell is if the windows ever rattle. Say, whenever the front door is shut or whenever it’s windy outside. While these are weatherproofing tips, they work for soundproofing as well because gaps let more sound in.
Step 2: Remove Old Caulk
There are a few ways to do this. You can either try scraping away any old caulk with a putty knife dry or you can use a softener to ensure it soaks for a few hours. Then, try to scrape it off and it should peel right up.
You can do the same thing for window glazing if your windows have been glazed before. Make sure you apply a softener that works for glazes to let it soften and it will peel up like glue, flaking as it does.
Step 3: Applying New Glaze
After you clean the window and the window seal, you can apply a new glaze and caulk. You can re-glaze the entire window if you like but make sure you buy the correct type of glaze for your window.
Then, apply the caulk by using a caulking gun and following the instructions on the bottle. The caulk will dry out after it is opened so don’t open it until you are ready to use it. It should take a day or so to dry completely after applying it.
Other Ways To Soundproof Windows
If you want to go with an easier route, there are a few things you can do. These means work well in most cases but aren’t ideal long-term because they do require you to use them every day you want soundproofing.
If you are only having a little trouble with sound getting in then these are perfect options because they are affordable and they are super easy to install. Most of them get rid of anywhere from 25-75% of sound.
Noise-reducing curtains are a great way to reduce the noise from outside without much work. You just buy them and hang them up. Just look for soundproof or noise-canceling curtains and hang them up.
Blinds naturally block out more sound than curtains. So another easy way to start soundproofing your windows is to install soundproof blinds. Because they are made with thick materials, they naturally soundproof windows.
This is a rarer option called a window inset. It is a pane that you can manually put inside your window that acts as a separate layer of soundproofing material. There are many reasons to use a window inset, and this is one of them.
Soundproof Window Panels
This is a really effective way to soundproof your windows but it does not look pretty. This is only for those who really want to soundproof their room but don’t care about looks. Soundproof panels come in vinyl, PVC, and carbon.
Using A Window Insulation Kit For Soundproof Windows
Another great option is to use a window insulation kit. This works very similarly to caulking and re-glazing but it is much easier to use. Window insulation kits are usually temporary and only used in the winter.
However, in hot climates, they are often used to block the heat of the sun. So they can work year-round. There are many different types of window insulation kits to choose from and each has its own advantages.
That said, window insulation kits in general have their own pros and cons. Here are the pros and cons of window insulation kits aside from their ability to soundproof a room if the correct one is chosen.
Window Insulation Kit Pros
While it may seem like a pain to install them, you’d be surprised how easy these kits can be. But that’s just one of the pros. Here are all the best things about these quick and efficient window insulation kits.
Installing a window insulation kit can reduce the cost of heating and cooling your house. This is because it blocks much of the air that gets into your house. This is perfect for windows with AC units.
Window insulation kits are surprisingly cheap. You can get one for anywhere from $5 to $50, but you likely won’t pay much more than that. So even if it doesn’t do you much good, you won’t waste much money.
This can work for accidents and for break-ins. Because whether it is a film, foam, or panel, it can help stop glass from shattering and halt it from falling into the floor. This can help keep those inside safe.
As great as the sun is, it can do damage to your floors, furniture, and even your skin. So block UV rays with a proper window insulation kit that can reduce the number of UV rays that get through your windows.
Window Insulation Kit Cons
Now that you’ve heard the pros, you may be thinking this is a dream. But all good things have their bad points too. Here are all of the worst things about temporary and difficult window insulation kits.
Can Be Hard To Install
While it can be easy to install window insulation kits in perfect conditions, if you have anything holding you back, things change. AC units, strange window sills, non-symmetrical windows, and other things can make things difficult.
Voiding Your Warranty
If you apply a window insulation kit to your window there’s a good chance it will void the warranty in place on your window. So check the warranty conditions of your window manufacturer before getting started.
Window insulation kits are great for the winter months, but they won’t offer long-term relief from the outside elements. Especially not for soundproofing. But it can offer relief while you are preparing for something more secure.
Hard To Uninstall
This depends on the type of insulation kits that you use, but in general, it can be tricky to remove them. Most of the time, the tape can leave marks on your paint or be difficult to peel off in the first place.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ
Is There A Fast Way To Soundproof Windows?
The fastest way to soundproof a window is to install window inserts. Installing inserts can reduce up to 70% of outdoor noises. They are quick to install so you can install them in an emergency or get some rest right away.
Does Caulking Windows Soundproof Them?
Caulking windows may soundproof them. It will soundproof the border of the windows if you caulk them, but it won’t soundproof the glass. So if your windows are thin, you’ll will need to add something else.
Do They Make Soundproof Windows?
Yes, you can buy soundproof windows. Start by looking for triple-pane windows. Triple-pane windows won’t always be tagged with the term “soundproof” but they are much more soundproof than single-pane.
What Can I Use To Soundproof A Window?
For the edges, caulk works. But for the glass, inserts, curtains, shades, and foam work together. You can also choose one or two options for soundproof windows. The more you use, the more effective soundproofing the windows will be.
How Do I Soundproof My Air Conditioner Window?
The easiest way to soundproof a window that has an HVAC unit in it is to use foam around the edges. Then install inserts on top and on either side of the HVAC unit. This is safe and simple to remove.
How Much Does It Cost To Soundproof Windows?
It costs around $1000 to soundproof every window in the average home. But this is to have someone else do it for you. If you do the work on your own, then you can cut the cost in half, and save more by using cheaper materials.
Should I Use Soundproof Windows?
If your windows are already weatherproofed, then you shouldn’t need to soundproof them. This is all up to your preference. Most people soundproof their windows to keep sounds out that keep them from sleeping.
But if you sleep well and the outside noises don’t disturb you then you don’t need soundproof windows. However, ensure everyone in the house agrees on whether to soundproof your windows or not before deciding.
If one person agrees that soundproofing would help them in their daily life or to sleep, then go ahead and take the first steps. Because it’s important that everyone gets a good night’s sleep for a healthier life.