Whether you reside in a high-rise apartment with noisy neighbors or want to jam out without waking your neighbors and children, soundproofing a room can be an ideal solution.
You can deaden sound in any room you want to use for a specific purpose. Whether you want to block the interior, exterior, or other types of noise, soundproofing can benefit everyone in and outside the room.
But what is the cheapest way to soundproof a room? The cheapest ways to soundproof a room include curtains, rugs, and blankets. In addition, you can rearrange your furniture to dampen sounds by positioning bookshelves and other large pieces of furniture against shared walls. Upholstered sofas and chairs can lessen the noise coming from downstairs.
Popular soundproofing materials like acoustic panels are sometimes expensive. You may admire soundproofing your room for whatever reason, but the price could put you off.
If that is your concern, worry not. You have several affordable options to keep the noise out and the money in the bank. Let’s get into the discussion and unearth sound-deadening products that offer the best value.
If you wonder whether soundproofing works for noisy neighbors, I wrote a whole article that I encourage you to read.
Why Is Your Room Noisy?
Before you think of the cheapest way to soundproof a room, it is vital that you know what makes your room noisy.
Where is the noise coming from? Let’s examine potential reasons for the noise.
1- Sound Source
Unwanted sounds in a room can come from a television playing in the sitting room, an instrument played in the house, or motorists using the road next to your house.
If you are a musician, you probably make a lot of noise during your practice sessions. You will need to soundproof your room; otherwise, you can make noise to your family members and neighbors.
It is essential that you identify where the sound comes from to block it. And sometimes, you would do the trial and error method until you correctly establish the sound source.
2- Entry Point
Your room could also be noisy because it has several entry points. Sound can enter your room from the adjacent wall to the sound source.
If the noise comes from outside your home, it could enter through doors and windows.
3- Reflection Point
Sound travels in waves and gets into a room at a certain angle; however, it bounces back at the same entry angle.
And because it enters the room in a straight line, it will continuously reflect from one object to the other until the energy is spent. The reflection causes more sound in the room.
The Cheapest Ways To Soundproof Your Room
Let’s determine what you can do with a small budget to have a noise-free room.
1- Arrange Furniture Next To The Sound Source
If the sound source is adjacent to the wall you want to soundproof, you can arrange your furniture like a bookcase or bookshelf on that wall to block the sound.
Using your furniture is a cheap soundproofing option, especially if you already have the furniture to use. You will only need to rearrange them to add more mass to the wall adjacent to the sound source.
You can also leave a space between the wall and the furniture and then fill it with soft clothes that can absorb the sound.
2- Use a Blanket And Soft Materials
Blankets and soft materials can help absorb airborne sounds. Sound energy travel in waves that creates vibrations. The sound is amplified when it hits hard materials like hardwood and metal.
However, soft materials like blankets can absorb that energy and keep your room quiet. Heavy blankets will do a better job of blocking airborne noise.
Where can you place the blankets? Hang them on the windows, doors, or places with gaps.
3- Use Curtains
While some houses have tinted windows and may not require curtains, you can use them to keep your room quiet. You can use heavy and thick curtains to absorb sounds that penetrate window and door gaps.
Furthermore, curtains come in different colors that can improve the aesthetic appearance of your house.
Most sound-deadening curtains and blankets are filled with dense wool or fiberglass, perfect noise absorbers. You can hang the curtains when your neighbors play loud music or when the noise comes from your room.
But when everything is quiet, you can tuck them away ad allow natural light to come in.
4- Use Rugs
If you have rugs in your room, they can act as sound absorbers. Neighbors playing loud music or making noise downstairs can cause disturbance when you need concentration.
However, if you cover the floor with rugs, they can help reduce the noise without giving the impression that the room was treated.
Floor soundproofing can be expensive and time-consuming, but with rugs, you can attain a similar result at a cheaper price.
Rugs are also advantageous because you can put stuff underneath without any problems. It allows you to muffle the sound even more as you pile soft material below the rugs.
There are different types of rugs in the market, but with patience, you can find what fits your sound-control needs.
5- Install a Carpet
A cart can also reduce noise that vibrates through the floor. If you have home workout equipment, you will likely make noise when dumbbells and other body-building equipment hit the floor.
This can be unpleasant to those sleeping or concentrating on other important things. You can install an EVA foam carpet to help with noise absorption. These foams are laid to form puzzle pieces on the floor but do not stick to the ground, which means you can remove them when you move.
Additionally, you can install sound-absorbing underlayment if you decide to renovate your floors, and because they are foamy, sound waves will not easily penetrate them.
You can use them with a wooden or tiled floor, and if you are into DIYs, you can install them yourself.
6- Install Cheap Soundproofing Foam
Cheap soundproofing foams can prove helpful to anyone on a tight budget. Soundproofing foams are relatively cheap on eCommerce platforms like Amazon.
You can buy and install affordable soundproofing foam at a relatively low cost. They also come in different colors to provide your room with nice aesthetic touch while achieving soundproofing goals.
7- Use White Noise
Did you know that background noise can help alleviate unpleasant sounds from outside? So, you can reduce unwanted sound in your room by investing in high-quality background noise.
You can invest in a fan, a sound machine, or an air purifier to provide you with white noise. These machines have double benefits, performing their traditional function and soothing the room.
White noise machines are ideal for people looking for something close to a silent environment. Sound machines are good alternatives that can drown out exterior and interior sounds without breaking the bank.
Air purifiers ensure the air you breathe is clean and also deal with unpleasant sounds. Sound machines make some noise, but the noise only helps to cancel out outside noise.
8- Buy Upholster Seats
You can upgrade your seats to upholster or cover the existing seats with soft materials. Soft seats are not only comfortable to sit on, but they can also help reduce sound or noise in a room.
The soft materials on the seat help to reduce reverberation and echo in the room. When sound vibrations hit the seats, they are swallowed, and the transmission cycle is cut off.
However, your seats’ capacity to absorb sound depends on the thickness of their foam and fabric. If the cushions have soft and thick foam, you can expect them to add an extra sound absorption layer.
Chairs with wool and velvet can also absorb sound in your room. Besides having a luxuriant appearance, the soft surfaces of these fabrics are ideal sound absorbers.
Now let’s consider some frequently asked questions
How Do Soundproofing And Acoustic Treatment Differ?
Soundproofing involves controlling noise or sound leaving or getting into the room. The goal is to reduce the sound people inside or outside the house hear. On the other hand, acoustic treatment is especially used by musicians. The goal is to prevent the sound from traveling around the room.
While soundproofing reduces disturbance, acoustic treatment focuses on improving sound quality.
What Is The Difference Between Impact And Airborne Noise?
Impact noise travels through object vibrations like ball bouncing, footsteps, and door banging. Airborne noise travels through the air, such as people talking, trains whistling, and dogs barking.
What Is The Difference Between Sound Absorption And Sound Insulation?
Sound absorption is a technique to absorb sound in a room, thus preventing echo. On the other hand, sound insulation blocks sound from entering the room. Sound insulation and absorption are often used in recording studios.
What to read next:
If you want to soundproof your room but pay nothing, you can use DIYs like blankets, curtains, and rugs. Nowadays, you can purchase cheap soundproofing foams and door sweeps to stop sound from outside.
You can also rearrange the furniture in the room, ensuring that heavy upholster seats or bookshelves are placed leaning on the adjacent wall to the sound source. You don’t need to break the bank with these cheap soundproofing alternatives.