Mostly, people use their basement for storage but if you want to make it more functional, you can soundproof your basement. This will enable you to utilize the space for other purposes like watching television, doing office work, listening to music, home studio or any other activity without having to worry about disturbing others in the house.
It is not difficult to soundproof your basement and you can achieve this by using different materials to cover the floor, walls, and ceiling of your basement.
But the main question arises, how to soundproof a basement? The good news is that there are a few effective ways to soundproof your basement.
10 Ways to Soundproof a Basement
There are various tested methods that you can apply to soundproof your basement and make it a more peaceful and quiet place.
By taking some simple steps, you can reduce the amount of noise that comes through the walls and ceilings and make your basement a more relaxing space. Here are 10 effective ways to soundproof your basement.
First and foremost, to reduce the sound coming through your ceiling or basement walls, you’ll want to consider insulation. It is an excellent way to keep the noise level low and make your basement more peaceful.
It not only reduces the noise you hear from outside, but it also helps to keep noise from inside your basement from traveling up to the main living area.
You can install blown insulation in between the ceiling and the floor above, or in the walls themselves. It is the fastest way to soundproof your basement and you don’t need to remove any other elements to do it. But you need to hire a professional and it is costlier.
The best time to install the insulation on basement walls is when you’re in the middle of your basement finishing. Keep in mind that you’ll want to use batts insulation between the to ensure that the space is properly insulated.
A single layer of drywall can’t keep the noise out and it is recommended to have two layers. The two layers will help to reduce the amount of noise that enters or leaves your basement.
Start by adding another layer of drywall and then use Green Glue Compound as acoustic insulation on the back side of the drywall. The Green Glue Compound is a cheap, readily available compound that will help to decrease the sound even more.
Acoustic Foam Tiles
You probably have seen acoustic foam tiles before and not even realized it. These tiles are commonly seen in movie theatres, music studios, and other places where sound needs to be controlled.
The sound in the basement can be quite loud and echoey, which is why these tiles are essential in order to keep the noise down. Installing these tiles in your basement is a great way to reduce unwanted noise while also improving the quality of sound.
You can apply these tiles to basement ceilings or walls in order to create a soundproof barrier. This is designed with a sticky back side and if your acoustic foam tiles don’t have the sticky side, we recommend applying this by nailing it.
Mass Loaded Vinyl
MLV (Mass Loaded Vinyl) is a type of vinyl that is infused with small metal particles which makes it heavier than regular vinyl. Therefore, it will not allow outside noise to disturb the inside environment of the basement.
In order to install MLV in your basement, you will need to measure the space and cut a piece of sheet to fit there. It is important to get an accurate measurement so that the MLV will fit properly and not leave any gaps.
Once you have the MLV cut to size, you can begin attaching it to the surface. The MLV will need to be attached with nails or screws in order to secure it in place. You can also apply Green Glue for added soundproofing.
Seal Up Any Gaps
While soundproofing the basement, you may find some gaps that are letting in outside noise. These gaps can be filled with caulking or green glue compound to help block the noise.
Green glue is a type of compound that helps to create a better seal and minimize noise transfer. That will create an even more inviting atmosphere in your basement without any unwanted outside noise.
You can use a standard caulking gun to apply the green glue and it will usually take about 24 hours for it to dry. Just make sure you don’t paint or sand over it during that time. You will notice a big difference in the overall soundproofing of your room once the glue has dried.
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Carpeting and Rugs
Decrease the amount of outside voice that comes through your ceilings by adding carpets or rugs for the floors above. Opt for a thicker pile to increase the sound-absorbing abilities.
According to our experience, people choose thinner carpets because they are cheaper, but those are not as effective in soundproofing your basement.
Installing Rugs and Carpets is a time-saving and easy way to reduce noise in your basement. Just by adding these to your floors, you will notice an impressive decrease in the noise that comes through your ceilings. Not to mention, they also have the added bonus of softening footsteps- so you’ll hear less noise overall.
Soundproof Underlayment is just an additional life-saving material when it comes to soundproofing for the floor above. It is an extra layer of protection for the floors above your basement and it will not only muffle the footsteps but will also reduce the vibrations.
You can find different types of materials in soundproof underlayment as per the type of flooring you want to install. The only struggle you might face is the installation process because you need to remove the old flooring first and then install the new soundproof underlayment.
We would suggest you hire a professional for this task to avoid any damage.
Soundproof Blankets or Curtains
Basement soundproofing is super easier if you utilize soundproofing materials such as soundproof blankets or soundproof curtains. These fabrics not only reduce noise but also help to keep the basement looking more elegant.
Also, it deflects any unwanted sounds that might be irritating, thus, giving you peace of mind whenever you’re working or relaxing in your basement.
Cover your windows with these materials by installing curtain rods on the top of the window frame and then hang the curtains. Place soundproof blankets over the doors. You can also add soundproof curtain around the door area to further soundproof your basement.
The best about this fabric is that it is not a permanent solution like the other soundproofing methods, so you can easily remove or open them when you feel the need for some ventilation or sunlight in your basement.
Rearrange the Furniture Above
Think about the noise coming down from above. If you can, rearrange the furniture in the room above the basement to create more of a sound barrier. This option will not be applicable to everyone because not every person has access to the room above their basement.
But if you have the option, start by going downstairs and spending some time analyzing the noise that comes in through the ceiling. Further, put painter’s tape on places where you identify sounds.
So that you can more easily find out which room above ground connects with the noise and which furniture in that room may be responsible for the noise. After that, you can go up into that room and start by shifting that furniture to the spot where it is less likely to make noise.
In that way, you can soundproof your basement without actually spending any money.
HVAC and Pipes
You might be surprised to know that your home’s HVAC and pipes could be contributing to sound problems. Take into account the positioning of mounted air conditioners, plumbing pipes, and furnaces.
Next, analyzing how the sound or vibration is getting from one point to another also matters. Then insulate the HVAC ductwork and pipes with soundproof wraps or liners or install duct silencer to reduce noise before it can penetrate other areas in your home.
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The Bottom Line
So, those are some of the most popular methods for soundproofing a basement. All the above methods are totally dependent on your budget and needs.
Some methods are more affordable than others and some are easier to install. However, all of the methods we’ve discussed will help reduce the amount of noise that travels from your basement.
Whether you’re looking to soundproof your basement to use it as a home theater, recording studio or just to reduce the amount of noise that comes from upstairs, these methods will surely help you achieve that goal.