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The drummer is probably the most unrecognized professional in the music industry. However, it is not easy to master the art and become an elite drummer. You need several hours of practice to improve as a drummer.
But where do you practice without your neighbors calling the police for disturbance? While a soloist, lead singer, and guitarist can practice at home without problems, a drummer needs to soundproof the room to be at peace.
So, how much does it cost to soundproof a room for drums? Depending on the labor and materials used, DIY drum room soundproofing projects cost between $2000 to $4000. On average, you can expect to spend between $10 and $30 per square foot to soundproof a room properly.
You can hire a studio for your practice, but that could be expensive and unattainable for most aspiring drummers. Therefore, you are left with one option- soundproofing your home.
How much will it cost to soundproof a room for drums in an apartment or home? This article will answer that question and much more.
If you are looking for the cheapest way to soundproof a room, I wrote a whole article that I encourage you to read.
The Cost Of Soundproofing a Room For Drums
Soundproofing a room for drums is costly and may involve building a room within a room. Simple tricks like using blankets and egg cartons will not help you.
One way to soundproof a drum room is to build a high-end one. It may seem costly, but if you rally your friends with carpentry tools, you can significantly reduce the cost.
In addition, building a room within a room would be a worthy investment if you are a professional drummer earning your income through recording or teaching.
The Drum Room Design
Let’s assume you live in New York and want to soundproof a 12′ x 16’x 8′ music room. This room can hold a full kit, an extra one or two musicians, and a small recording setup.
What do you need to soundproof this room for drums?
If your room is modular, you will not need to construct anything into the loft structure.
With the help of a contractor, you can build a raised floor in your drum room. The raised floor is fitted with rubber to carries the drum. It also has U-shaped vibration isolators fixed on the wooden floor without touching the walls.
The inner walls should have thick layers and a soundboard between the inner and outer walls. You will probably install two doors- the inner industrial-insulated metal door and the outer door. There should be airspace in between these doors to enhance soundproofing.
How much can you spend on all these? Approximately $4,000. Although you will still hear the muffled sound of drums from outside, it is a major improvement. You can be sure you cannot hear anyone speaking or singing in the next room when you close both doors. While the people in the house may hear the faint sound of someone drumming, your neighbors next door will not hear anything.
However, you may want to check with the relevant authorities before modifying the existing structure if you have rented an apartment, a basement, a condo, or a loft.
Additionally, you should take care not to interfere with the house structure. Increasing excessive load on the ceiling, floors, and walls of an old building can be dangerous. You should consult a structural engineer to ensure it is all clear.
Cheap Ways To Soundproof Your Drum Room
If you don’t have the budget to build a room within a room, you can go for cheap alternatives. However, these methods may not be as effective.
1- Soundproof The Doors
You can replace the existing hollow core doors if you have the money. But if your pockets are dry, apply a vinyl adhesive material to add mass to your door. A 4×10 foot of this material will cost approximately $114.00.
Hollow doors can be frustrating as they amplify sound through them. The cheapest way to fix a hollow or solid door for soundproofing is to seal cracks and gaps. You can invest in a self-adhesive weatherstripping seal to cover the gaps.
Alternatively, you can use Green Glue soundproofing sealant to seal around your door casing. Since these sealants don’t crack, they will prevent sound from passing through.
2- Soundproof The Windows
Sound from the drums will likely escape from the windows. You can reduce this noise by soundproofing them. Here is how:
- Hang heavy and thick sound absorption curtains on the windows when playing.
- Use old blankets in layers and hang them by the windows.
- Seal any gaps to reduce sound vibration from escaping.
3- Focus On The Underneath Routes
Since the drums are placed on the ground, focusing on reducing noise from the ground will help solve the problem. You can use special sound-absorption rugs under the drum set to soak up the sound. They are relatively cheap and can be rolled up for easy carriage on the road.
The rugs help with killing the noise and prevent accidents from drum movements. Your drum stand will likely dig into the rug rather than slip on the surface.
Additionally, you can carpet the floor with some special drum rugs. These rugs can be bought on Amazon or another eCommerce store and used with homemade ones. The noise from the drum needs all the resources you can get to kill.
4- Consider The Walls And Ceilings
While the walls and ceiling may not be problematic with drum sounds as the areas we have addressed, you should soundproof them. Installing acoustic foam is ideal for soundproofing the ceilings and the wall.
Beating the drum will generate noise as the sound bounce off hard surfaces. If you can reduce the hard surfaces, you can limit the transmission of sound energy, thus limiting the noise.
You can install foam that can easily be attached and removed on the ceiling and wall to absorb the sound. Sound foams are often light and will not add unnecessary weight to the ceiling.
They are also perfect for temporary setup, allowing the drummer to practice away from home. It also means you can install it on an apartment and move with it if you change houses.
Factors To Consider When Selecting Drum Room
If your current house cannot host a drum room, you are probably searching for a suitable house. Here are some factors that will make soundproofing drum rooms cheaper.
The location of the soundproofing room is very vital to your success. A room with many open spaces, windows, and doors is good for relaxing, not drumming. It may take a lot of materials and money to soundproof such a room.
Also, ensure the room is not near the living or bedroom. Many drummers prefer the basement if the house has one.
The basement is ideal for practicing your drums because the walls and the floor often have some soundproof elements. You will only need to focus on the ceiling, which means you can considerably reduce the cost and time of the project.
You should also ensure the room is big to accommodate soundproofing materials. A large space will also come in handy if you want to build a room within a room.
2- Available Gap
As you separate the room, some parts of the soundproofing materials will not fit well. You may be left with a room with gaps that need extra attention.
Gaps should be sealed using green glue because it can help join two materials. You can hire a professional to help you seal them up. A professional can help you identify gaps you could not see or seal.
3- Building Materials
The drumming room should be in a house built with concrete. A wooden or iron sheet house will be challenging to soundproof for drums unless you live alone in that area.
You can easily soundproof concrete walls and floors with DIY materials. The walls will reduce the amount of sound that reaches the outside world.
Can You Soundproof a Room 100%?
Unfortunately, you cannot have a 100% soundproof room with sound treatment. You need an airtight construction and a decoupled room from the main structure.
Since drums can produce up to 120dB, you need a lot of mass separating the sound room from the rest of the building. The air pockets between the sound room walls and the main wall will also help with sound isolation.
Even then, you will still have drum sound escaping through flanking paths. You can create a recording studio-like room where the foam or panels absorb sound drum resonance. But if you don’t have a budget for that, you can still add practical DIY treatment to make playing the drums bearable.
What to read next:
The best way to soundproof a room for drums is to construct a room with a room. This approach creates a mass-air-mass environment where the inner wall, air, and outer wall stop sound from the drum.
The greater the air pockets between the walls and the wall masses, the better. It can easily dampen higher sound frequencies from the drum.
However, that does not mean you cannot use other soundproofing alternatives to soundproof your drum practice room.