Imagine trying to catch some much-needed sleep or get some work done in the peace of your bedroom, but your child is running around the house yelling, or noise from your neighbors’ house is keeping you from doing so.
It would be great if you had a way to muffle the noise, right? Luckily, it’s possible! You can soundproof your walls to finally get the peace and quiet you need.
This article will give you all the necessary information about how to keep the indoors of your home quiet, the importance of soundproofing and all the materials you’ll need to soundproof your room.
What Is Soundproofing?
Soundproofing is preventing sound from entering or leaving a room or building. It involves making changes to the physical structure of a building to allow for the efficient absorption of vibrations and sound.
How Soundproofing Works
Before dealing with noise control, you must first understand how sound works. Sound travels in two ways, by air or impact. Airborne sound is sound transmitted by air; for example, speech or music from a television or radio, barking dogs, etc. The sound waves are carried through the air until they hit something solid, like a wall, causing it to vibrate. These vibrations travel through the wall, and then get radiated out on the other side of it.
Impact sounds, on the other hand, are transmitted when sound is created by the impact of solid objects on a building. This could be the sound of footsteps, an object hitting the floor or the sound of a nail being driven through a wall by a hammer.
There are two main reasons for wanting a soundproof home: to block sound from entering a room and to prevent sound from leaving a room.
Soundproofing works in three major ways. These include:
- Sound Absorption: One way of making a room soundproof is by using soft materials, such as dense foam, to absorb the sound in the room. The sound will travel directly into the surface of the soft materials, which then absorb it; as a result, it gets significantly reduced. The foam or other soft materials can be placed on the inside or the outside of a wall. Either way, you’ll get the results you want!
- Sound Reduction: Reducing sound in a room is achieved through the use of very thick permanent walls, temporary walls, room dividers or even foam. Most soundproofing materials that are meant for reducing sound are made of wood and fiberglass. These, however, aren’t the only materials that can get the job done. You can also reduce sound by doubling up on doors or walls. The extra airspace between the two doors or walls will act as a bubble, which helps keep the sound out.
- Soundproofing Specific Parts Of The Room: Sound can travel through gaps, doors, windows, roofs and even thin walls. Before soundproofing your room, determine the specific points where the sound gets in or out before installing any soundproofing materials.
Why Should You Soundproof Your Bedroom?
Privacy: As mentioned earlier, one of the main reasons for soundproofing the rooms in your home is to prevent sound leaks. This ensures that your neighbors and visitors can’t listen in on your private conversations. You’ll also get to carry out your daily activities without bothering the other members of your home as they go about their own activities.
Health and Safety: Too much noise is not only bad for the environment, but it’s also bad for the human body, too. It has been known to cause an increase in blood pressure, an accelerated heart rate, stress, hypertension, etc. Soundproofing might be costly, but it’s totally worth it, as you won’t have to deal with all the extra costs associated with too much exposure to noise.
Neighbors’ Comfort: Same as you, your neighbors also deserve comfort in their homes. Soundproofing your house will offer you comfort and ensure the same for your neighbors. Sounds from your home will stay in, and noises from outside will stay out.
Noise Regulations and Policies: Today, most countries have regulations and policies in place to deal with noise pollution. Even though they aren’t strictly enforced in some jurisdictions, adhering to them by soundproofing your home will ensure that you don’t fall on the wrong side of the law.
Best Materials For Soundproofing
a. Mass-loaded vinyl (MLV)
b. Fiberglass insulation
c. Insulation Foam
d. Soundproofing curtains
e. Natural cotton fiber
f. Vibration pads
g. Acoustic panels
How To Soundproof a Bedroom
1. Install Thick Carpets
The sound of footsteps can be really annoying, especially when you’re trying to sleep. Installing thicker carpets will help reduce the sound of footsteps by absorbing it.
Also, carpets have the ability to absorb reverberation and echoes by trapping the sound waves in their fibers. When placing carpet in your bedroom, make sure you cover the entire floor for the best result.
Another method that will enhance the effectiveness of your carpet is to install cheap acoustic underlay beneath it.
2. Use Soundproofing Foam
Soundproofing foam is the perfect material to use on a budget. It helps keep out a good amount of sound and can also add to your bedroom’s flair with its different designs and styles.
The sound absorption you’ll get from foam is an important part of any soundproofing process. It may not completely block all the noise from entering your bedroom, but it will certainly make a huge difference by reducing the echoes. You should also keep in mind that soundproofing foam products are very cheap and easy to find.
3. Seal The Bedroom Door
Most doorframes have a gap at the bottom. This is more often than not an entry point of sound into your room. For peace and quiet, install a seal or a draft stopper at the bottom of the door to seal the gap and prevent sound from passing through.
One of the first things I did was install a door sweep. They’re relatively cheap and do a pretty good job of blocking unwanted noise. Mine was really easy to install and it seems to be very durable.
Another effective product you can use is weatherstripping tape to seal all the gaps around the door. It’s commonly made as rubber tape or plastic lath that you can easily attach to your door with adhesive.
4. Seal the Windows
Along with the doors, windows are another common culprit when it comes to noise pollution, so you can use the weatherstripping tape that’s left over from the door to seal the windows as well.
Each self-adhesive seal strip is extremely easy to install. I really love the fact that this tape can withstand just about any weather, and you can easily cut it to fit whatever dimensions you need.
If you don’t think this is the right product for you, then you can try this window insulator kit. Just like the weatherstripping tape, these are also easy to install and the rolls come in a variety of sizes.
5. Install Acoustic Windows
Acoustic windows are the perfect replacement for regular windows in your bedroom. They’re specially made to withstand the vibrations caused by the sound waves coming from outside. Regular window frames always rattle due to loud sounds, such as the vibration of trucks or really loud music. Acoustic windows are always a worthy investment.
Installing acoustic windows will help reduce the amount of noise significantly (by up to 50 percent), which is impressive. Other than sound dampening, these windows will reduce heat transmission as well.
6. Use Ceiling-Mounted Drapes
Another way to soundproof a bedroom is by using ceiling-mounted drapes. Install one on one side of the bedroom wall where the head of your bed is. This will reduce the sound coming towards you and create a beautiful feel in your bedroom.
Check out my guide about the best soundproof curtains.
7. Add Your Own Background Sound
This works best for people living in apartments with thin walls and ceilings. Playing soothing background sounds, such as soft nature sounds or soothing music neutralizes the noise. This doesn’t completely muffle out unwanted sounds, but it’s an effective go-to when you’re working on a budget.
For this, I recommend getting a Marpac Dohm-DS White Noise Machine. This is an effective sound machine that doesn’t feature an electronic or digital recording. Instead, it uses a fan that creates the sound of rushing air. The device is compact, portable and perfect for all environments. I strongly believe that it’s worth every penny.
You can also check out my post on the best white noise machine for bathrooms.
By following this guide carefully, you should be able to reduce all unwanted noise inside your bedroom. Even if the noise isn’t completely eliminated, you’ll certainly notice a difference. If you’re on a tight budget, you don’t have to worry, because all these steps are relatively cheap and shouldn’t take you much effort, either.