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I’m going to show you how to soundproof a room with blankets. It’s simple and easy, and after reading this guide, you’ll save a lot of your time, effort and of course, avoid some common mistakes DIY soundproofers face.
Acoustic blankets make a very big difference to the acoustics of a room if properly installed. They are one of the affordable methods of dealing with the noise problem.
If you live in rented accommodation or student halls, or any rented unit where the landlord wouldn’t allow you to undertake any project that would mean structural changes, then moving blankets are the only option you can rely on to reduce unwanted noise from the neighbors. My girlfriend and I ordered a few blankets on Amazon, and within two days, our noise problem was solved.
I have also another article where I explain other possibilities to utilize moving blankets for soundproofing. I should say “sound dampening”, because moving blankets do not soundproof.
Can Moving Blankets be used for soundproofing?
Well even though we wanted a permanent soundproofing option, moving blanket couldn’t handle heavy bass coming from next door neighbor. So we had to deal with the bass problem using these five of the ten bass noise reduction hacks.
But if you’re dealing with some simple noise problem, dealing with person next door conversation, television noise from next door or traffic noise in the house, then these blankets will effectively block out the unwanted problem.
The simple trick here is to go for ones that are too thick. The thicker the blankets, the more effective they will be in blocking sound. Below is a video to give you a better understanding of how these blankets work.
How to soundproof a room with blankets
Below is a guide on how to soundproof a room with blankets. If the particular room of interest is half-empty, then soundproof blankets are your best bet to prevent echo effect in the room. They will also absorb sound from outside from coming through.
The trick would be to add a couple of blankets on every surface in a room, and you will dramatically reduce outside noise. When noise-proofing a room with blankets are different areas of the room that you can cover, and they include:
How do you soundproof a door with a blanket?
The same sound barrier blankets can be used to cover doors. Acoustic blankets for doors are effective in not only reducing echoes inside a room, but they also help absorb outdoor noise trying to find its way inside the room.
Acoustic sheets on the door will dramatically reduce unwanted noise. This is because you will be adding more mass to the door and the rule of thumb is that the more the mass, the better the material in sound absorption.
1. Cover the windows
Any opening in your room is a possible culprit that allows outside noise. Windows, even when tightly closed, will allow some outside noise. You can hang acoustic blankets over the windows. However, you should note that these blankets will interfere with window view and appearance, but if you value quiet, then I see no problem blocking the window view.
Because it can be a bit tough to find the perfect sound absorption sheet that will fit the size of your window, you might need some tape and scissors to cut to exact lengths.
2. Hang some on the walls
One effective way of soundproofing with acoustic blankets is by hanging them on the walls. Modern buildings have thin walls, and such thin walls allow unwanted noise to pass through them. You can easily hear your neighbor’s squeaky bed.
Hanging some blankets will add more mass to the walls. I would recommend you buy moving blankets with grommets for easier installation.
I’m sure you’ve seen some acoustic blankets in recording studios- they help improve studio acoustics. They are also excellent insulators, but this factor doesn’t influence their effectiveness in soundproofing. You will not only benefit from soundproofing but also help you regulate room temperatures.
3. Hang them on ceiling
If you have noisy neighbors living upstairs, it might be worth it attaching some acoustic blankets on the ceiling.
And because it can be tough to install these soundproof blankets overhead, I would recommend you ask a friend to assist you with the process. You can use screws, nails, or glue to attach them over the ceiling. This way, you will be able to quiet the sounds coming through the ceiling.
4. Put the blankets on the floor
Now method won’t benefit you but those living downstairs. Sound barrier blankets can serve as a good alternative for the floor carpet. They are thick and soft, and they will reduce footfall impacts reducing the sounds transmitted to the rooms below you. You will also prevent the echo in your room.
5. Use them to soundproof the appliances
I’ve seen some of my neighbors use moving soundproof blankets to cover their noisy appliances. You could implement this technique at home, as well. You can cover your laundry machines, dishwashers or even fridges to reduce noise these appliances make. You need to cover the appliance with the blanket or add some aesthetic adjustments.
For example, here is a guide to help you soundproof a washing machine using acoustic moving blankets.
- Lay one moving blanket on the floor
- Place the appliance over the blanket
- Pull the sheet to cover the sides of the machine and then tape it up
- Place another sheet over the top
- Roll up the top blanket when you need to load or unload the washing machine
What to look for when shopping for a moving acoustic blanket
If you want to invest your money in sound barrier blankets, there are some certain features that you should keep an eye on. They include:
The most important factor that you should check when shopping for soundproofing blanket is the thickness. Sound absorption highly depends on the material thickness, and the same principle applies to moving blankets.
In my experience doing DIY soundproofing projects, lightweight materials don’t do much when it comes to sound absorption. It’s also important to note that acoustic blankets are different from traditional moving blankets. They have grommets for easier installation and are made of materials that are effective in soundproofing.
As the saying goes, you get what you pay for with soundproofing blankets. That’s true; cheap moving blanket won’t absorb unwanted noise effectively. But on the other hand, when compared to soundproofing your room using drywalls and other soundproofing techniques, well, you and I can conclude that moving blankets are cheaper soundproofing alternatives.
The most expensive acoustic blanket is far cheaper compared to other sound deadening products such as mass loaded vinyl, drywall, and so much.
Just like a thickness, density affects how effective the moving blanket will be in sound absorption. The denser the material, the effective it will be in blocking and absorbing unwanted sounds.
How much a material absorbs, depends largely on the density.
The area that you are planning to soundproof is a factor to consider when it comes to the choice of design. Blankets differ in sound absorbing capabilities and designs; that’s why there is a variety of blankets with different masses in the market.
For instance, if you want to soundproof a room that requires very low noise, then you will have to buy a blanket with a capability of blocking even the little sounds coming from outside.
When choosing, make sure you go for the design you will like most and the correct size. The reason for choosing the best size is that in case you buy a bigger acoustic blanket you will have to cut t down which may end up damaging it and the design. Know the correct size of the area to be covered before buying to avoid wastage of the design and surface of the blanket.
Grommets help you hang the blankets but not all have them. Blankets with grommets ease your work when hanging them on the walls or doors. In case you purchase a blanket with no grommets, you will have to put them yourself, so it’s wise to choose one that has the grommets in place to ease your work.
As you choose the best type of soundproofing blanket, you should ensure that you go for the one that it is enough for your space to make sure there is no space left uncovered. Buy a blanket that does not leave even a small gap since that can be a source of noise into your room.
* Types of Fabric
For an acoustic blanket to be useful, it should have an outer surface made of a fabric that sounds can penetrate in. This is because the main purpose of the blankets is to allow the sound waves to get in the fabric for them to be absorbed.
The inner side is made with materials such as cotton, vinyl materials, or fiberglass, which is dense enough to absorb and reduce the sounds. For the sound to reach this inner layer, the outer surface should be able to allow the waves to penetrate.
For you to determine whether the fabric is suitable for absorbing sound, you can try to blow air on the outer surface; if it passes through, then, a sound can penetrate.
Final thoughts on soundproofing using blankets
The above guide has acquainted you with some information you need to know about the soundproofing blankets. They are available at affordable prices and do not occupy much of your space, unlike some other soundproofing material, which makes it a convenient solution for your project.
Consider choosing a soundproofing blanket that suits your needs and taste since they work differently depending on the features.