How to soundproof a wall cheaply? That’s an interesting question that should be answered because we live in a world where sound pollution is increasing day by day. Due to the increased disturbing noise, soundproof has become a common and popular thing people do nowadays.
One of the main reason why the unwanted sound is coming into or going out of your room or office is the thin walls. There are many ways to soundproof a wall. However, many methods are very expensive and need construction. So if you have a low budget or you live in a rental apartment and you don’t want to spend much because you will move to another place soon, then don’t worry, I will discuss some of the cheap, affordable and easy methods that you can use to soundproof your wall.
Also, check out: How to Soundproof a Doorway in 8 Easy Steps!
Did you find yourself in a situation where your neighbor screams at you for playing loud music or having fun with your friends and family in your room? Soundproofing your walls will not only block sound coming in from the other side, but it will also prevent sound to reach the other side of your walls. So if you use your room as a studio, recording, home entertainment room or your chilling place, soundproofing your walls are important to avoid complaints from your neighbor.
If you think that the affordable methods discussed are too inexpensive or you want a solid and pin drop silence, then stick around because, at the end of the article, I will discuss some of the expensive yet affordable ways to soundproof your walls.
H ow to Soundproof a Wall Cheaply:
- Fill up the empty space.
- Install drywall.
- Install foam mats.
- Add acoustic foam.
- The cheapest method.
1.Fill up the empty space:
If you have a large room and you have less furniture, then this may cause echoes and you may have a hard time recording or watching movies in your home theatre. The first thing you should do to reduce this echo is place furniture in front of the wall.
Thick and tall furniture like bookshelf, dresser or closet will work great for instant sound insulation. Also, placing furniture in front of the wall that you share with your neighbor will reduce the noise penetrating to the other side as noise bounces off hard surfaces easily.
If you live in a place where an earthquake is frequent, then don’t forget to secure your furniture with an earthquake strap. Earthquake strap can protect your furniture from falling during the earthquake and it can also save your life.I found Quakehold! 4161 Furniture Strap Kit, Oak to be one of the best earthquake straps for the money. Check out Quakehold! 4161 Furniture Strap Kit, Oak on Amazon.
Now you may ask me how come placing furniture be cheap. I would say it is free if you have spare furniture laying around that you are not using. Also, if you are a handyman and have some woods laying around, you can make a nice bookshelf and place it in front of your wall to soundproof your wall. Even refurbishing an old furniture can save money rather than buying a new expensive furniture.
Another cheap way to soundproof your wall is by hanging wooden wall art or picture frames. Wall art, frames, or large mirror are very affordable and will enhance soundproofing. Not only that, but they will also enhance the look and aesthetic of your room.
Filling your room with furniture and hanging stuff on the wall is the foundation of soundproofing your wall and room. Don’t expect much soundproofing from this method. They are great for reducing echoes and they will absorb some of the noise, but they are not the ultimate solution for soundproofing your walls.
2. Install drywall:
Most of the walls today are thin and can easily transmit sound from one room to another. To solve this problem, you need to install drywall. Installing drywall will increase the thickness of your wall and it will be difficult for sound to travel through walls.
Installing drywall needs some construction, however, they are not that much difficult to install. First, you need to buy a drywall from your local hardware shop. Before buying a drywall, measure the length of your wall and accordingly buy your drywall.
Before installing the drywall, look for any crack or gap in the wall, if the wall is not flat or contains any crack, then you need to make it flat or fill the gap with triple expanding foam. I have been using DOW CHEMICAL 157860 Triple Expanding Foam for a long time and found that this is one of the best triple expanding foam. Check out DOW CHEMICAL 157860 Triple Expanding Foam on Amazon.
After filling the gaps and flattening the surface, carefully place the drywall onto the wall and drill screws to secure it. To anchor the drywall, you can use Ribbed Plastic Drywall Anchor Kit with Screws and Masonry Drill Bit, #10-12 x 1″. Check it out on Amazon.
There is another way to install drywall which is Mudding and Taping Drywall. That method is not convenient and hard to do. Also, the thicker drywall you purchase, the more your walls will be soundproof. However, thicker drywalls costs more than thin drywalls, so buy the drywalls according to your preference and budget.
3. Use Foam Mats:
If you are a person who doesn’t want to take the hassle to install a drywall to soundproof a wall, then you should use foam mats. These are easy and convenient to install on your wall. They need no construction and these foam mats will work as a sound insulator and will deaden the noise.
If you want my suggestion on a cheap and good soundproofing foam mat, then I would suggest you purchase the uxcell 315mil 6.46sqft Car Cell Foam 8mm Sound Proofing Insulation Deadener Mat 40″x24″. Check out Uxcell Sound Proofing Insulation Deadener Mat on Amazon.
Although the name suggests that they are for the car, these can also be used for your walls. This foam mat is constructed with excellent sound reduction thermal insulation material and it contains materials as rubber foam. This is a thick yet lightweight mat that won’t absorb any water and it is resistant to oil and petrol.
Usually, foam mats release bad odor which is not good for your room. However, the Uxel car cell foam does not release any odor, unlike polyurethane foam. This mat is also super easy to put up against your wall. The back of this mat contains high-quality adhesive, so just stick it to the wall and you are good to go.
If you think that this mat is a way too cheaper for you and you want a better soundproofing solution, then you can install mass loaded vinyl which is quite expensive but very effective. I have discussed about the mass loaded vinyl at the end of this article. So keep reading to find one of the best mass loaded vinyl.
4. Add Acoustic Foam:
This article of how to soundproof a wall cheaply would be incomplete without talking about the acoustic foam. Acoustic foams are also very easy to install and there are tons of acoustic foam available on the market.
Acoustic foams are widely used and very popular for soundproofing. They are perfect for studios, recording and many popular YouTubers also use them.
You will be puzzled with the wide variety of brands and different quality of acoustic foam available in the market with a various price range. However, if you want a cheap yet good acoustic foam that will get the job done, then our suggestion would be to go with the 12 Pack- Acoustic Panels Studio Foam Wedges 1″ X 12″ X 12″ by Mybecca. Check out these Acoustic Panels Studio Foam Wedges on Amazon.
You are getting 12 pieces of acoustic foam and each of the acoustic foam is 1 square foot. The thickness of each of the acoustic panel is 1-inch. Although this is not a thick acoustic panel, however, they get the job done and are great value for the money.
The acoustic panels from Mybecca come in many different colors. So you can pick the one that looks aesthetic with your room. An important tip is that, the placement of the acoustic foam effects soundproofing. If you do not place the acoustic panel correctly, then it may not effectively absorb sound. If you place the panels according to the picture, then it can control the sound from reverb echoes more effectively.
This acoustic foam is great if you want your room for a recording studio, gaming room, vocal room, home entertainment purpose or any other purpose. The acoustic foam will control the sound of the room by reducing reverb and echoes.
One of the misconceptions many people have about acoustic foam is that they block the sound. This is not true. They don’t block the sound rather they absorb the sound and reduce reverb and echoes. So to soundproof a room effectively and to maximize sound dampening, you can use a combination of mass loaded vinyl or foam mats and the acoustic panel.
First, install the mat onto the walls to block the sound penetrating the wall and then install the acoustic foam onto the mat. One mistake many people do when installing the soundproof mat and acoustic foam is that they use normal glue.
Normal glue will not keep the mat and acoustic panel together for a long time and it can also damage your wall and mat and acoustic panel. To avoid this problem I suggest you to buy 3M General Purpose 45 Spray Adhesive. These are very affordable and easy to apply. Check out 3M General Purpose 45 Spray Adhesive on Amazon.
5.The cheapest method:
If you are very low on budget or are not willing to spend much money then you should try this method. First, you should know what level of soundproofing you want. If you want to soundproof your room’s wall for recording or vocal booth, then this method will not be effective. However, if you want to soundproof your room for chilling with friends and family or want to slightly reduce the noise so that you can have a better sleep, then this method will work for you.
The first thing you should do is find a box. It is better to use a cardboard box for this method as they are thick. I am pretty sure that you have some cardboard box laying around your storeroom. If not, then ask your friends or neighbor.
After gathering boxes, the next thing you need to do is to wrap the box with some sort of soundproofing or noise absorbing materials. Any item with dense texture will do fine. Carpets, blankets or even towel will do fine because they are a great absorber of the sound wave.
After selecting your preferred material, wrap and firmly attach that material around the box with glue. After that, use adhesive glue to install your DIY soundproof box on the wall.
Also, if you have some old blankets or drapes laying around, you can hang them on the wall to make your wall soundproof cheaply.
The expensive way to soundproof a wall:
If you feel that all the methods discussed above are very affordable and you have a higher budget and want to have a better soundproof wall, then continue reading to find out more ways to soundproof a wall.
The first method I discussed above is how to install drywall. You may know that there are various kinds and thickness of drywall out in the market. I would recommend you to purchase the thick drywalls which will block the sounds more effectively. Also, double the layer of drywall to further block airborne noises to go out of the room.
After installing the drywall, the next step is to install thick and effective soundproof acoustic panels along with mass loaded vinyl to the drywall.
Mass loaded vinyl is a great sound barrier and will not release unfavorable odor like foam mats. Our recommended mass loaded is the TMS Mass Loaded Vinyl 4′ X 25′ 100 Square Feet 1 Lb MLV Acoustic Barrier. This MLV is great for studio, home entertainment room, office and voice recording room. This is made by virgin material so there no odor will come out of it. Check out TMS Mass Loaded Vinyl on Amazon.
After installing the mass loaded vinyl, install a thick and high-end acoustic foam panel. One of the best acoustic panels I have come by is Auralex Acoustics Studiofoam Wedgies Acoustic Absorption Foam. Each panel is one square foot which is small and gives you better choice in placing and designing your room. The 2″ thickness will eliminate flutter echoes and standing waves. It also has an NRC rating of 0.80 which means this foam is better at absorbing sound. Check out Auralex Acoustics Studiofoam Wedgies Acoustic Absorption Foam on Amazon.
Now, soundproofing our walls have become a necessity due to the increase in noise pollution. There are many soundproofing materials that are cheap but not that much useful. However, I hope that by reading this article I have answered your question of how to soundproof a wall cheaply that really works.
To have a better soundproof wall, follow each of the steps mentioned above. If you wish, you can also try out the expensive way to soundproof the wall. However, it is not worth spending so much money if the reason for soundproofing the wall is to chill in your room with friends or have a good sleep. However, if you are a professional musician or want a studio then the expensive method of soundproofing the wall will be better for you.