Tag Archives: windows

Sound Proofing and Absorbing

Difference Between Sound Proofing and Sound Absorbing

What will you do when someone suffering from noise problem could not search for soundproofing on internet? Many people ask me the ways to keep the sound within specific area. In such condition we usually talk about the type of noise and the room to deal with the problem.

Many people ask about the cost of soundproofing panels or foam as they think it can solve their problem. This is a common misconception as foam itself cannot stop the sound. In fact, foam absorbs the sound instead of stopping it.

Audio sounds can be controlled by two types of products- one that stops the sound and the other that absorbs the echo of the sound.

In order to make people understand this entire idea I suggest building an aquarium to put water in it. What will be the best material for it? Suppose they use sponges on the walls to restrain the water but it will absorb it. Similarly the sound in a room behaves like water in the aquarium. The water can be retained in the aquarium unless its walls are made of glass panels with seal as soft materials like sponges can absorb the water. In order to block the water or sound in a space, it has to be made air-tight from heavy and dense materials.

Noise absorbing

Foam from an anechoic chamber to absorb noise

Usually light, soft and fluffy products are used for absorbing the sound in a room to reduce its echo in that area. Suppose, while finishing your basement room you install studs to frame the wall with sheetrock. If you use 2” thick egg crate foam instead of sheetrock then you can clearly hear the sounds spoken from the other side of the foam as it has no or least mass or density.

Noise blocking

The products that do not allow the sound to leave or enter a space are installed while constructing the wall to decouple it and to obstruct the contact of its two surfaces. If, in the above example you use layers of sheetrock on either side of the wall instead of foam, you will not be able to hear the conversation on the other side of the wall.  


While constructing a standard racquetball court in a gym the walls are made two feet thick to produce consistent echo sound when you clap in the room or throw several balls in this room from various directions to bounce on its walls. Now suppose you finish the walls, ceiling and floor of that room with 2”thick foam and throw same number of balls in it to bounce again. You will see that now they do not bounce after hitting any surface because the energy of the balls will be absorbed by the foam insulating the room. Thus it proves that soft foam insulation on all the surfaces can absorb the echo instead of sound.

I am thankful to you if you got the idea I tried to convey about the difference between blocking and absorbing sound clearly through my raw examples, without using any technical thing. Non-technical people can be educated more easily about their noise problem through simple things as they are not going to be acoustic experts.  


Sound Insulation for Windows

For most people interested in soundproofing, they don’t know where to begin. Of course, the obvious solution is to hire professionals who know how to soundproof windows, but in most cases a go-getter attitude is all you need to do it yourself. Plus, by doing it yourself you’ll benefit by saving money and learning a new skill!

You should step aside to professionals when it comes to installing soundproof windows, but if this type of remodeling is not necessary for you, we may have just the sound proofing tips that you are looking for to get you started.

That being said, if DIY soundproofing is up your alley and in your budget, keep reading to find some fantastic DIY window soundproofing tips that we have compiled through our experience to get you on your way.

Why would you be interested in soundproofing windows?

With the growing problems of noise pollution, especially in densely populated areas or an apartment with many roommates, sound dampening or sound proofing is of growing importance. Common sounds like construction noises, the music your neighbor plays all throughout the night, children crying, or even just the bustle of every day life may seep inside your home and become a distraction or even worse, a health hazard. You can be left with interrupted sleep schedules, depleted concentrations, or business conversations being interrupted.

The purpose of your window is to let things such as light, air, and atmosphere into your home. If you live in a noisy area, it also lets sound in, even when closed. Taking steps to soundproof your windows and doors can go a very long way toward reducing the noises, allowing you to have a restful sleep throughout the night, reduce stress, and have a more homely feel.

A grey soundproof piece of tape was applied to a wooden window sill to dampen the noise allowed through.
Window sill which contains a thick sound proof tape

How to get started with DIY window soundproofing

The easiest wins in soundproofing a window come from sealing off any air gaps in the existing windows with foam or sealants such as caulk. In this step a properly installed window is critical to soundproofing. The addition of insulation tape to the bottom of the window and the bottom of the window sill (where the window touches the base when it is fully closed). After these easy areas are sealed where sound can get through are fully enclosed with caulk or the sealing tape, you should a dramatic decrease in noise pollution from the outside.

If after, this step you find that a reduction in noise is still necessary look into applying soundproof materials to the walls surrounding the window.  There are multiple options when ti comes to do this but the most common is adding sound proof acoustic panels and sound proof tape. If you are not comfortable or would like assistance installing soundproof insulation, it is recommended to contact your local window contractor to assist throughout this process.

DIY window soundproofing tips

Make sure your window is in acceptable condition (no cracks or breaks – that could be where the noise pollution is coming from!)

    • If your window is cracked, you can attempt to repair it, if it is small enough. Otherwise, the more reliable solution is to get the pane replaced before any sound proofing begins
    • After the window is insulated for sound, a cheap blackout curtain can further aid in the prevention of noise, as well as light.