9 DIY hacks to Soundproof a Floor easily

Let me tell you why soundproofing the floor is so crucial when it comes to removing unnecessary noise or echos from any room. We all know sound travels in the air and the more it travels, the more it disturbs you. The noise that enters the room beneath the door, travels along the floor around the room. So, if we soundproof the floor then such noises that travel along the floor or bounce back from the floor would get destroyed.


Let’s first understand the type of noises we need to deal with when it comes to soundproofing.

Airborne Noise and Impact Noise 

The mentioned methods in this article will include measures to reduce airborne as well as impact noise. 

Airborne Noise in a Nutshell: As the name suggests, airborne noise travels through the air. Television, music, dogs barking, and any other common source you can think of produces airborne noise. It’s relatively easy to contain airborne noise. 

Impact Noise in a Nutshell: Impact noise is generated when two objects physically interact with each other. For example- the squeaking sound that your floor produces when you walk over it. Other sources include footsteps and dropping things. Impact noise is relatively harder to contain as it travels through a structure. 

Cost of Soundproofing a Floor

Such projects don’t have fixed charges, it’s all about how much you optimize. It depends on the quality of materials you’re using, the area that needs to be soundproofed,  the existing condition of the room or floor and many other factors.

Cost of soundproofing a floor is $10 to $30 on average

Still, to give you an idea about the cost, according to homeadvisor.com, the average cost of soundproofing an existing house is around $10 to $30 per square feet.

You might need professional help, if you’re looking for a permanent solution and those labour charges also add up to the bill.

9 Easy Ways to Soundproof a Floor

1. Fit Acoustic Insulation Under Your Floorboards

Acoustic insulation under your floorboards is one great way to reduce the noise decibels in your space by superior levels. It involves the use of acoustic mineral wool, an excellent insulator of sound. The material deals with the reverberations of sound in timber joists or other sealed chambers in your space. Acoustic mineral wool is so thick that it doesn’t let the sound waves pass through it very easily.

acoustic insulation
acoustic foam absorber and bass traps for sound dampering background

Installing this thick and fluffy material under your floorboards will absorb most of the sound waves passing through timber floor cavities, making your room quieter than before. However, make sure to check the mass of the acoustic mineral wool before purchasing it as many manufacturers claim to have soundproofing properties in their products but they all tell a different story in reality. 

 2. Use Carpet Pads

Not only does carpet padding provide tremendous comfort to your feet, but it can also be extremely helpful in reducing decibel levels in your space as well. Depending on the thickness, carpet padding can help soundproof your space by tremendous levels. If you manage to get your hands on a rather thick carpet padding, the echo and extra noise are sure to reduce by a margin.

Carpet Pads

That said, the higher the thickness, the higher a carpet pad’s soundproofing capabilities are going to be, you can even take it as a rule of thumb in this case. Carpet pads can be installed under or over your carpet, depending on what type of floor your home has. 

 3. Install a Floating Floor

A floating floor, as the name suggests, isn’t attached to the floor by nails or glue. Sitting freely on the main floor, a floating floor allows movement for better sound absorption. However, installing a floating floor raises the height of the floor dramatically. You’ll need to adjust the doorways and other things according to the new height. Also, you can install acoustic grade underlay before finishing the top flooring for even better soundproofing. 

 4. Use Noise-reducing Compound

Using noise-reducing compounds to soundproof a floor is one of the easiest methods of all. However, it does take at least a month to deliver its sound-deadening effect. Compounds like Green Glue, Auralex Acoustics STOPGAP, etc. have proven to be effective against annoying noise and echo. To utilize this method of soundproofing, use a caulk gun to distribute the glue across the floor.

After that, lay a hardboard on the top and add your flooring or a carpet. That’s it, now all you need is patience as this method will take at least a month to reach its peak performance. You can even take it as a DIY project since the material is not hazardous in any way. Meanwhile, expect a tremendous increase in the durability and complete riddance of squeaking sounds of the floor after using this method for soundproofing. 

Check out this video if you want to soundproof the floor in an apartment or office.

 5. Interlocking Floor Mats

Unlike usual mats, interlocking floor mats are designed in such a way that the pieces interlock with each other. The edges of interlocking floor mats allow this interlocking, you may find a lot of similarities between padded tiles and interlocking floor mats just because of that. Also, as you might have already figured out, using interlocking floor mats for soundproofing is a piece of cake.

Floor Mat

All you need to do is to take precise measurements of the floor and purchase these floor mats in enough quantity to cover your entire floor. Unlike carpets, interlocking floor mats are easy to clean and durable. They’re also made of antibacterial materials, making them suitable for use in garages, gym rooms, and studios. However, don’t expect to see a dramatic decrease in decibel levels.

Interlocking floor mats sure work like a charm and involve less installation work, but they somewhat lack sound-deadening capabilities when compared to other soundproofing methods. You can use carpets or floor underlayment to make up for the less soundproofing capabilities of interlocking floor mats. 

Also read: Can you soundproof your room with Blankets?

 6. Utilise Additional Flooring

Installing additional flooring can be the most straightforward approach towards soundproofing a floor. However, make sure to use adhesive instead of nails for an even better soundproofing effect. Options like a hardwood floor, tiles, laminate wood, linoleum, etc. work like a charm in soundproofing your floor. Meanwhile, take note that installing additional flooring isn’t enough to produce a noticeable sound deadening effect.

You can go with carpet padding or other methods with additional flooring to enjoy a significant sound-deadening effect. However, installing additional flooring can be expensive at times, you should never go with this option for soundproofing your floor if you have a rather tight budget. 

 7. Insert Deck Screws 

Inserting deck screws is one great way to deal with the impact noise of the floor. The method is specifically effective if your floor generates that annoying squeaking sound when someone walks over it. This basic and straightforward process involves drilling a bit of screw, sounds too easy? Well, it’s not. First, you’ll have to mark the locations from where the squeaking sound is coming.

Or you can choose to remove the entire flooring and then reinstall it, this time with proper care to prevent those squeaking sounds from your floor. It sure is a pretty basic and easy process but taking a bit of precaution won’t do any harm either. Moreover, hiring a handyman for this job is what we highly recommend in this case. 

8. Use Rubber Floor Mats

Using rubber floor mats is another great way to marginally reduce impact noise. From the annoying noise of vibrations your machines and appliances generate due to the impact with the floor to the sound of your footsteps, rubber floor mats have got you covered. While rubber floor mats are practically ineffective against airborne sound, it delivers astounding performance against such impact noises.

It muffles the vibrations dramatically, therefore reducing the noise and its impact. 

9. Install Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV) 

MLV is the ultimate conqueror when it comes to reducing noise levels in a space. Whether it’s ceiling, walls, or floor, MLV works like a charm in any case. Just use glue or nails to install MLV as most tapes won’t stick, thanks to the tremendous weight and thickness of the material. The material is so effective that it can be used without the aid of any other soundproofing material. However, MLV isn’t very impressive aesthetically, it’s better to use it with a carpet on top. 

Must Read: Do Soundproof Curtains really work?

Mass loaded vinyl sheets

Conclusion

When we talk about soundproofing a floor, we should know that floor is one of the most important parts of the room that is responsible for reflection of sound. You can find a lot of options of soundproofing materials that could be used for covering the floor and reduce the echo or bouncing sound waves. These materials absorb sound vibrations and help in reducing the noise upto certain extent.

Let me know in the comment section below, Why are you trying to soundproof a floor and which materials are you gonna use?
Feel free to ask any questions, I would love to answer.