There are many times in life that you’ve probably wished a room was soundproof especially true if you are living in an apartment complex and share walls with neighbors. You might have various reasons and scenarios for wanting this.
But maybe you’ve stopped yourself, because you assume that it’s too costly and difficult to soundproof your room and that only professional recording studios can install sound insulation.
But soundproofing a room is easier than you might think, and there are a variety of creative ways to do it. Below, we’ll take you through a variety of different scenarios so that you can find the one that works best for you. We’ll give you what you need in a way that will be easy to understand and implement if you’re a DIY’er that needs soundproofing your house.
Soundproofing a Wall
Let’s start with something basic since we know a lot of you will be apartment residents who can hear neighbors and other noises through walls. One of the best and simplest DIY sound insulation techniques is adding mass. While it seems obvious, there are a few things to keep in mind before you start this procedure:
Add the Mass on the Noisy Side
When insulating the wall from sound, remember to check which side of the wall from which the noise is coming. A noisy neighbor actually means you need to treat your side of the wall to stop excess noise.
Seal Cracks and Gaps
The sound is sneaky, and always leaks through any cracks it can find. Heighten your sound absorption rates by checking for gaps or spaces around switch boxes, door frames and the like. We recommend acoustic caulking for this.
Consider Acoustic Sound Panels
While you can add mass in a number of ways, fabric-wrapped acoustic panels not only deaden exterior noise, they enhance the apartment acoustics so you more clearly hear what you want. Bonus, they’re also customizable with home decor.
You can add specialized soundproof panels, but you can also use thick blankets, a series of bookcases, or other items in lieu of sound panels. Be sure to mount shaky items to keep them in place.
Covering a Floor
Dealing with noise from a floor is sometimes necessary to prevent either sound traveling to the ceiling of the apartment below, or simply to eliminate the vibrational noise that is common in your apartment or home–squeaks, and other noises that are made and travel throughout the rooms. Soundproofing a floor typically focuses on the latter. Some popular ways to reduce sound from floor movement include:
These are commonly used in conjunction with carpeting when trying to absorb sounds. Lay them first and then lay your carpet over them for best results.
These joists help by decoupling flooring from supports in order to reduce the transmission of low-frequency sounds, which can be notoriously hard to control.
Underlayments work by being primarily designed for hardwood, stone or tile floors, and reducing all footfall noise. We recommend such things for areas where moisture might be a concern, as well. Be sure to check what types of underlayments are best for your flooring type.
Dealing With the Ceiling
One of the most popular and easy ways to deal with noise issues from above is to get some ceiling tiles. These soundproof materials for ceilings are typically made from very dense materials like polypropylene that contain things like hollow-core beads to guide sound into panels for absorption.
Using ceiling tiles is a great choice because they not only dampen noise, they’re also very low maintenance and easy to clean. In addition, they can spruce up possibly unsightly ceiling areas such as basements and the like.
Other Things to Keep in Mind
Using these and many other ideas out there, many of which you’ll find on our site, we make it easy to soundproof your house in all of the major areas of walls, floors and ceilings.
However, there are a few additional tips to keep in mind when doing these projects, and it’s best to know about them before you begin, to save time and effort.
Fix “Leaking” Areas
We touched on it briefly, but all of the soundproof panels in the world aren’t going to make a difference if you have a bevy of areas where sound can still get through. Seal windows, caulk all gaps and fill in all holes before you begin. This in itself will greatly reduce unwanted noise.
Sound Absorbing vs. Blocking
Decide how you want to tackle the sound issues and choose the right soundproof materials for the job. Sound absorption soaks up the sound waves in order to sound quality within a room.
Sound blocking is about trapping the sound to prevent from moving to other parts of the area, and keeping unwanted sound out. If the noise is in the same space as you, get sound absorption products. If it is in a different area from you, get blocking products.
Keep these things in mind and you’ll have everything you need to deal with noise issues in the major areas of your apartment or home.