How to Soundproof Your Apartment – Today!

There are lots of reasons why it’s a good idea to soundproof your apartment.

You may have noisy neighbors who keep on partying even late at night. You may be close to the traffic and it keeps you from having a good night’s sleep.

Or maybe it’s the other way around — you have kids or you’re a part of a band and you would like to control the noise coming from your apartment.

Whatever your reason is, we’ve prepared this article for you. In here you’ll learn how to soundproof your apartment (if possible, today).

Mikkel Holm, Founder of TheDIYClub.com

Let’s get started! 😊

Introduction to soundproofing your apartment

Let’s discuss first your apartment and soundproofing in general.

Most residential buildings, especially those in the city, have thin walls and light doors. Because of that, it’s easy for the constant noise from the outside to come inside.

By nature, sound travels in the form of soundwaves through a medium like air or solid objects. Soundwaves are able to penetrate your home because of the holes, gaps, and cracks found on your doors, windows, and even ceilings.

Mikkel Holm, Founder of TheDIYClub.com

There are two common principles involved: sound blocking and sound absorption.

Sound blocking is achieved when soundwaves can’t enter because there are objects on its path that blocks or deflects it. Such is the case in using solid objects. However, vibration can still be felt and heard as soundwaves can still travel via solid objects.

Sound absorption is done by trapping the soundwaves and converting them into heat energy. This dampens the noise resulting in a much quieter space.

The common areas in your apartment that you need to be concerned are the following:

  • Walls
  • Doors
  • Windows
  • Ceiling
  • Floor if you’re on a multi-story building

We’ll be tackling each area and discuss what materials and solutions can be used to soundproof them.

Soundproofing the apartment walls

Due to the thinness of your walls, it’s easy for soundwaves to pass through. The main task in soundproofing your walls is to cover the walls or block the soundwaves from entering either by reinforcing the wall or putting up materials in it.

Here’s how you can soundproof your walls:

Move your furniture to block the sound path

Contrary to what others believe as a “myth” in soundproofing, using your furniture to block off the path of soundwaves do work to an extent.

When a soundwave hits an obstacle, it loses some of its power and energy as it will bounce off and die down.

Surely, this is a cost-free method. However, manage your expectations. Moving your furniture won’t completely kill the noise. But it may reduce it to an extent.

Mikkel Holm, Founder of TheDIYClub.com

Dampen the noise with soundproof panels

Adding a soundproof panel is a good way to add mass and density to absorb more vibrations and dampen the noise.

This is a good way to block low-level noises like conversations and background noises from the outside.

luxhive soundproofing acoustic foam panels

There are lots of available soundproof foam panels on the market. You could buy a 12 pack acoustic foam panels from different brands like Foamily and Mybecca for less than $20.

Seal holes and gaps using sealants

The cracks and gaps in your walls are spaces where soundwaves can easily pass through.

You can seal them using caulks or sealants. If you have sealants in the house already, feel free to use them.

If not, you can buy acoustic sealants like Gorilla or Loctite to seal those gaps and holes.

Put insulation materials on the wall

If you can buy the materials today and you have knowledge and experience in opening your walls, you could probably do this in a day or two.

But if not, you would need to hire a professional for this. We have included this solution since this is one of the most effective ways of soundproofing the walls in your apartment.

owens corning fiberglass board insulation material

There are lots of soundproof insulation materials. But the best of them is batt insulation which are rectangular panels or rolls made of fiberglass, cotton, or mineral wool.

They are a bit pricier, around $40-$60. But they are worth it. Some notable brands include Rockwool, Owens Corning, and ATS Acoustics.

Install new drywall

If you’re ready to spend more, you can also replace your drywall with a soundproof one.

This is an expensive solution and would require you to hire a professional. But it’s pretty effective especially when coupled with insulation material.

quietrock 545 drywall

If you’re curious, you may have to spend more than a hundred dollars on drywall. You might want to throw in a few sealants as well to cover the holes that can’t be covered with insulation and drywall.

Brands you can trust are QuietRock and National Gypsum.

Mikkel Holm, Founder of TheDIYClub.com

Soundproofing the apartment doors

Some of your doors are probably not made of wood but instead hollow and lighter materials. Due to this, soundwaves can pass through them, not to mention the gaping holes around the door frames.

Soundproofing your apartment doors is easy. Here’s what you can do:

Seal the spaces with weatherstripping

To reduce the sound that’s coming through your door, you obviously have to cover areas like the door frame, door jambs, and the gap under the floor.

Weatherstripping is pretty easy to find. Most of them are “all in one kit for the door”. However, they do work in insulating the air and the noise.

When choosing, make sure to select the thickest. Weatherstripping foams from Magzo have varying thickness

Install a soundproof door sweep

When it comes to the gap under the door, door sweeps are more effective than weatherstripping tape.

Choose soundproof door sweeps that are adjustable, versatile, and self-adhesive. Remember, the door is a moving part of your apartment. You can’t seal them the same way you seal door frames.

suptikes huge gap door draft stopper sweep

There’s an additional benefit in installing a door sweep — keeping away bugs and insects inside your apartment.

Fortunately, these materials don’t cost that much. Check out the door sweeps from Baining, Suptikes, and Pro Grade USA.

Mikkel Holm, Founder of TheDIYClub.com

Apply soundproof paints

If you like to paint, you can apply soundproof paints to your door.

These paints are thicker than your average paint. They’re made up of latex and sound-absorbing fillers.

acry-tech-acoust-x

Soundproof paints can help dampen noise by 30%. They’re effective against low and faint noises like murmurings.

They’re pretty easy to apply. You can paint them like regular paint or use a spray. Most of the popular choices are paints from Second Skin, Hy-Tech, and Acoust-X.

Mikkel Holm, Founder of TheDIYClub.com

Cover the door with soundproof blankets

It’s not surprising (or weird) to cover doors with soundproof blankets. Recording studios do this.

Soundproof blankets are denser and thicker than your ordinary blankets. Technically, most soundproof blankets are moving blankets.

us cargo control quilted microfiber door cover

When companies knew that moving blankets like US Cargo Control can be used for soundproofing, they started creating ones designed for studio use. Examples of such are blankets from Audimute and Singer Safety.

You can simply hang them on a curtain rod or find a way to stick them to your doors.

Mikkel Holm, Founder of TheDIYClub.com