If you are a resident of an urban town then you know exactly how loud it can get at times. Every sound from all sides of the fence probably makes your backyard a chaotic and noisy place with no chance to enjoy some respite.
While it is not entirely possible to achieve a soundproof backyard, there are things you can try to reduce the noise that comes from outside the fence, so that you can at least get some peace and quiet.
The first place to start will be to get a fence if you don’t have one. After that, you can try out these methods that you are about to read to make your backyard less noisy.
7 ways to soundproof Backyard
Here are some effective fixes you can try for soundproofing your backyard :
Install a noise reduction fence/wall
The most basic step to reduce noise in your backyard is obviously to put a barrier between the noise and yourself.
Fenced or walled backyards have less noise than a backyard with an open plan. The better course of action is of course to get a soundproof fence or wall.
Soundproof fences act as sound barriers and reflect the noise that tries to enter from the outside.
The material used to build a soundproof barrier is usually brick, stone, or stucco covered concrete. These materials provide a hard exterior and help to block the sound waves instead of passing them.
Plants some shrubs and bushes
Another effective solution for backyard noise reduction is filling the edges of the property boundary with vegetation. Plants with dense growth and leaves with a large surface area act as a great backyard sound barrier and can reduce the incoming noise by as much as 10 decibels.
This method can be tried in areas where the incoming sound is not too loud. Plants are also a good aesthetic choice given you trim and take care of the plants from time to time.
Make sure to choose plants that are evergreen throughout the year. This is a cheap and easy solution as compared to installing a soundproof fence.
However, do not overdo the planting of shrubs as dense vegetation can encourage infestation of small bugs and mosquitoes. You will reduce the sound but will be welcoming another problem.
Just plant the shrubs in a line along the edge of the fence and plant higher shrubs in the direction of maximum noise.
Install a water fountain
Well, this is not technically a method to soundproof your backyard, but more like to make the noise die out because of some other sound.
Installing a water fountain is a good way to do that as the sound of flowing water is scientifically proven to have a calming effect on human nerves.
Go for this method only after you have installed a solid fence and still don’t have a quiet backyard. With an extended budget, you can amplify the style of the water fountain as an aesthetic addition to the look of your home.
If you already have a fence in your backyard that does not seem very effective in blocking the noise but you don’t want to tear it down to build a soundproof one, then you can just make it soundproof by lining it with soundproof panels.
Before installing any soundproofing methods, you need to make sure that the fence or wall surrounding your backyard has no holes in it. Or else all of your efforts to reduce noise will fall through.
To make this method more effective, make sure that the fence is high. The higher the fence, the more effective it will be in reducing any kind of noise. A high fence is also good for privacy reasons.
Residential Acoustic Fencing
This method serves the double purpose of soundproofing the backyard as well as increasing the durability of the fence. While it can reduce the intensity of any incoming sound by as much as 32 decibels, it can also maintain the attractive natural look of a traditional backyard.
Acoustic fences are made with pressure-treated timber, design posts, and groove boards, usually fitted in an interlocking V pattern which eliminates any chance of gaps in between the fence.
The interlocking is weather-resistant, ie.,the fitted grooves will not come loose even when the fence boards made of timber shrink and expand due to changes in weather.
These timber boards or panels are mounted on either steel design posts or pressure-treated timber posts in the form of a “tuning fork” that provides continuous insulation from noise and sound. The fence is made durable with a capping and a counter rail finishing.
These installations cost a substantial amount to install but as they are very effective noise barriers, they are every bit worth the money spent.
Line your fence with Mass Loaded Vinyl
Another way to turn your fence into a noise reduction barrier is to cover the insides of it with Mass Loaded Vinyl, most commonly known as MLV.
MLV is a heavy vinyl sheet is filled with metal particles to increase its total mass. It is often added to walls and ceilings in order to add mass to them and as a method to insulate a place from sound.
Fences can also be lined with MLV. If the fence is considerably high then the use of MLV is going to be more effective. You can install the sheets onto your fence as a DIY project as there is nothing complicated in the process at all.
All you have to do is measure the dimensions of your fence in 3 or 4 sections and get enough MLV to line them with. Thin strips of the material can be applied on the corners of the fence to leave no gaps in soundproofing.
MLV is widely used to block noise indoors and outdoors and while the degree of usefulness will not be the same inside a room and in your backyard, it will still be a great noise barrier.
After the installation is complete, you can attach a thin plywood sheet to the MLV layer to make the fence look more natural and to make it weather resistant.
Build a Berm barrier
Before we move on to the details of a berm barrier, you should be aware of the two necessities for building this sort of barrier. They are- manpower and space.
You cannot build a berm as a DIY project, it takes a lot of time and effort and can only be done in a backyard with a lot of space.
Berms are nothing but a sort of raised ground between two areas. It is like a small hill that you will have to create to build your fence. Most people cannot build a berm only because they do not have enough space. To build you might even have to bring extra soil from somewhere.
A 7-8 foot fence on top of a berm will require a huge base and a lot of soil, but the mere distance that will be created will be enough to make sounds die out before they reach the interior of your backyard.
The Bottom Line
The bane of modernity is pollution and noise and that is affecting a peaceful home life.
People living in rural areas probably don’t even have to consider getting a soundproofed backyard because of how peaceful the whole setting is.
Urban cities do provide a lot of opportunities but also a lot of noise. Well, the good thing is that now you know how to enjoy a quiet time resting in your backyard.
These were some of the most effective residential noise barriers and solutions to reduce noise in the backyard. Hopefully one of them is sure to work out for you!