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Soundproofing 101: Take These Steps to Block Out the Noise
Posted By Anthony Fontana On January 28, 2013 @ 3:55 pm In Home Improvement,Homeowners Tips | No Comments
A lot has changed in the two years since I graduated from college. For starters, McDonald’s and Taco Bell are no longer two of my main food options. Clothing wise, sweatpants and sweatshirts aren’t tolerated in the “real world” like they were in the classroom. Perhaps most noteworthy is how much more my body depends on a good night’s sleep. Three or four hours just doesn’t get me as far as it used to. I feel like I need a minimum of seven hours or else I’m dragging.
What’s even worse is I’ve somehow become a light sleeper. No longer can I sleep through loud music, airplanes flying overhead, or trains passing by. The worst part about all of this is that there are train tracks just outside of my window. On some nights, I’m awoken by what sounds like a train only a few seconds away from coming right through my window.
While the majority of my problems stem from outdoor noises, indoor noises can also wreak havoc. Loud TVs and kids playing games can ruin a good night’s sleep just as easily as a train. Luckily for all of us, there are steps we can take to block out some of the noise. Read ahead and sleep in peace.
Protect shared walls
A well-placed item such as a bookcase or dresser can help block out noise from other rooms. The bigger the item, the more it can help reduce the amount of vibrations coming through the wall. In essence, it acts as a second defense after the noise gets through the shared wall.
Cover the gaps
This small step can go a long way. A door sweep can help block outdoor noise from entering while caulking the windows and any other small gaps you come across will also help. You’ll also lower the cost of your monthly energy bills, too.
A dropped ceiling is a secondary ceiling hung below the main ceiling. Also known as a suspended or false ceiling, it helps block out noise from within a home. Out ff the tips I’ve recommended so far, a dropped ceiling is the most expensive and time consuming. If you’re comfortable with DIY projects, you can install a dropped ceiling for a 15×15-foot room for $300-$400. If you’re like me and have no idea where to begin, prepare to shell out $600-$1,200, according to CostHelper.
Install new windows
Like adding a dropped ceiling, installing new windows isn’t cheap. It’s important to take into consideration your budget before deciding on new windows. If you elect to go with new windows, I recommend storm windows because they allow for tighter seals. Price depends on the size, although the typical range is $300-$700 for a storm window.
The idea behind soundproof carpet is pretty simple. All it involves is extra padding beneath the carpet. This tip is helpful to prevent noise from upstairs rooms spreading to midlevel rooms or midlevel room noise to the basement.
Extra drywall and insulation
As I mentioned in the first tip, the more mass you have, the better. In this step, the additional mass comes in the form of extra drywall and insulation. The more drywall and insulation you have, the less sound you’ll have to deal with. For insulation, consider blown in insulation, which is composed of loose fibers that are blown into walls using special equipment.
What other tips do you have for soundproofing your home? Let us know in the comments section below!
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