10 Easy Ways to Soundproof your Basement Ceiling

Soundproofing a basement ceiling may seem like rocket science, but it’s certainly not! With correct information and procedure, you can also soundproof your Ceiling and achieve a tranquil basement that blocks all sound vibrations.

We are not talking about creating a hundred percent isolated basement here because it is not practically possible. In fact, in this article, we’ll see how we can reduce or block the sound entering the basement through the Ceiling.

In this article, we’ll use both sound blocking and sound-absorbing measures to reduce the intensity of sound entering through the Ceiling. Blocking noise requires creating many effective sound path-breakers, and we’re here with a beginner-friendly guide to make your research much easier. So continue reading below and get to know the A to Z of soundproofing your basement ceiling. 

What kind of noises travel through the Basement Ceiling?

To block the sound vibrations, we first need to know what kind of noises are there so that we can take proper measures to tackle them. Basically, there are two types of noises:

  • Airborne noise

The name itself explains a lot for this one; this kind of noise is transmitted through the air and includes the sound created by your children arguing upstairs or the music system at the max volume. 

It is a high-frequency noise that can easily pass through a basement ceiling.

  • Impact noise

Impact noise is usually created when surfaces hit each other. This includes the thumping sound of footsteps on the floor above or the noise generated while adjusting the furniture. This type of noise is a low-frequency noise that seems to have a lower impact, but it can still be heard in your basement. 

How do you Soundproof an already Finished Ceiling?

Redoing an already finished ceiling for the purpose of soundproofing could prove to be overwhelming for your budget. It would not produce as good results as for an unfinished ceiling, but you can still soundproof an already finished basement ceiling.

You can install a ⅝” drywall to your Ceiling. It is the cheapest option but only produces minimal results like reducing sound in the basement and little improvement in sound quality. You can use an acoustic sealant (green glue) to install another layer of drywall on top for better results.

For best results, add sound isolation clips to your Ceiling with metal furring or hat channels which would decouple the Ceiling. Install two layers of drywall on top of it. This is the best option at hand to soundproof a finished ceiling. However, this process is also rather expensive.

soundproof ceiling
soundproof unfinished ceiling

How to Soundproof an Unfinished Ceiling?

An unfinished ceiling is the best prerequisite to soundproof a basement ceiling. The basic process includes insulating, installing resilient channels for decoupling, installing layers of drywall, and finishing with plugging all the remaining air gaps

The cost of the process can vary with the different types of materials you use. Using high-quality materials like mineral wool insulation would be more expensive, giving the best soundproof results. You have to make a decision based on the extent of noise you want to block and your budget.

How to Soundproof the Basement Ceiling?

Now we arrive at the most important section of the article. There are various ways to go about the process using the different materials and processes available right now. You can create your silent haven with the help of the methods mentioned below:

1. Insulating the Ceiling Joists

The first step to soundproofing a ceiling would be to stuff the space in the wooden joists. Adding mass would be an effective start as it would block a lot of air space which is the transmitter of noise. 

The popular choice to insulate the ceiling joists is primarily fiberglass which is widely available and affordable. It has been used for the longest time and is a great choice for thermal insulation as well.

However, mineral wool insulation has seen recent popularity due to its three times more density than fiberglass, which makes it a better sound deadening product. It is also a better environmentally friendly product, which is made of 70% recycled material.

All these perks of mineral wool insulation come with an increased price as well. You can choose the insulation that matches your needs and pocket the best.

2. Resilient Channels

Before you move to the next step of installing a blocking surface, you need to make arrangements for the decoupling of these surfaces. Decoupling means creating an additional barrier between the two surfaces to further reduce the transfer of noise.

how to install resilient channel

This process of decoupling can be done by installing resilient channels across the wooden joists at a 90 degree or right angle. These channels will make a noticeable difference in the soundproofing process and are an essential step in creating a strong base.

3. Install Drywall sheets

While a half-inch drywall is best left unspoken of in this matter, a ⅝” drywall can actually work really well in soundproofing. This drywall sheet needs to be installed as an additional preventive surface on the resilient channel.

The most important point to note here is that the drywall must not be in contact with the joist, or else the whole purpose of the resilient channel would fail. The drywall sheet must only be drilled into the resilient channel to be able to function properly.

An additional layer of drywall can also be installed on top of the existing one to create a double blockage. This can be done with the help of an acoustic compound such as green glue, which is cheap and widely available. It will create a strong dampening effect and reduce the sound vibrations traveling between the two drywalls.

The green glue should be applied all over the first drywall sheet surface, and the next sheet should be carefully placed after that.

How to install drywall on a ceiling

4. Seal the gaps with Acoustic Caulking

As most of the work is done now, it all comes down to the details. If you mishandle this part, the whole process would all be in vain. After installing the drywall, you need to check the remaining small holes that would still let sound pass through.

We know that every small air pocket can be a huge hindrance to soundproofing. Acoustic caulk is a non-flammable rubber-like sealant that can be used to plug the gaps that remain within the drywall sheets. It is widely available and inexpensive. Carefully examine the whole Ceiling and apply the sealant.

5. Acoustical Ceiling Tiles

These drop ceiling tiles work more for absorption of sound than blocking. You can install these on your Ceiling to have an additional sound-absorbing layer that is also aesthetically pleasing. However, keeping in mind its cost versus effect factor, you can skip this part if this is something that won’t be feasible for you. 

6. Acoustic Panels

Acoustic panels are another option to check out in this regard. They’re usually used on the walls but can be installed on the Ceiling as well. These panels are available in different materials such as fiberglass, wood, or the most widely used “acoustic foam panels.”

The foam panels are the cheapest, but they only have sound-absorbing qualities, while the other options offer sound absorbing as well as sound blocking qualities. Foam Panels can be used in place of ceiling tiles as they nearly serve the same purpose.

7. Mass Loaded Vinyl sheets

Mass Loaded Vinyl sheets are another great option for blocking impact as well as airborne noises. They are dense sheets that can be laid on the floor above the basement ceiling or onto the Ceiling. 

These work better than the acoustic foam panels but are used more for interior use than an upper decorative layer in a room. As these only come in black colour, you might not want to install them in your basement. 

How can I Soundproof my Basement Cheaply?

It could be possible that you want a hushed basement but don’t want to burn a hole in your pocket. In that case, don’t sweat it, as you can follow some of these cheapest ways to soundproof your basement ceiling!

8. Heavy carpeting on the floor above the Ceiling

From what we’ve understood till now, soundproofing is to not let the sound travel through and block its passage as much as possible. So you can use heavy and dense carpets as well as rugs on the floor above. These carpets and rugs would absorb the sound before it travels to the basement through the Ceiling. 


This would certainly be less expensive than breaking down and rebuilding your whole basement ceiling. It won’t be that effective in completely blocking all the sounds but will improve the conditions to a great extent compared to before.

9. Rearranging the furniture 

You can strategically place the furniture upstairs in such a way that it prevents the noise from transmitting downstairs. You can place big armchairs or shelves at a position where most of the noise comes from or at the place where you want the most stillness in the basement. 

You won’t need to spend a penny to do this, and it would work well in plugging noise from upstairs.

10. Soundproofing paint

You can also apply soundproof paint to your basement ceiling as an additional buffer. These paints are inexpensive and can reduce around 30-50% exterior noise. You should apply at least three coats for the best results. It can also be a colorful addition to your basement, giving it a beautiful new look.

How much would it Cost to Soundproof a Ceiling?

Well, the cost of soundproofing a ceiling differs based on the quality of products you use and the method you choose to soundproof your Ceiling. Still, to give you a better idea, here’s a table that shows you the exact cost of materials you’re gonna need for soundproofing your Ceiling:

S.NoProduct NamePrice
1.Caulking Seal$10 – $20
2.Floor Mat$34 per 3/16 inches
3.Acoustic Panels$70
4.Mineral Wool$0.63 – $1.10 per square feet
5.MVL Sheets$50 – $100 (varies with dimensions)
6.Resilient Channel$300 – $400
7.Green Glue$20 per tube
8.Soundproof Paint$46 for 128 Fl oz
9.Drywall$15 per 5’ x 8’ Panel
10.Soundproof Foam Panels$50
List of all the products required for soundproofing a basement ceiling

All of these products are available on Amazon.com.


To repurpose a basement and soundproof the Ceiling, one needs to understand the different ways sound waves can transmit through it. Soundproofing can best be done on an unfinished ceiling, and you can also use different soundproofing materials such as MVL sheets for soundproofing your Ceiling. 

Some cheap options are also available, like we discussed in the article, such as placing rugs or using carpets. Let me know in the comment section below why are you soundproofing your basement ceiling and which process do you find the best for the same?

Please feel free to ask any questions. I would love to answer your queries!


1. Can you Soundproof a Concrete Ceiling?

The answer is YES; we can soundproof a concrete ceiling. We can do this by adding mass to the Ceiling with the help of drywall and insulation. It helps in blocking the sound waves entering the basement through the Ceiling.

2. How can I soundproof my Basement Ceiling from footsteps?

Noise generated from footsteps is called Impact Noise, which can be blocked by either insulating the Ceiling and adding mass or by installing carpets and rugs on the floor above the Ceiling.

3. How to soundproof the Ceiling between floors?

The Ceiling between floors can be soundproofed by adding two five by eight inches of drywall onto the Ceiling with the help of an acoustic sealing in between. Green glue could be used as a soundproofing sealant.