Noise can be a source of everyday stress for many people. You may find it difficult to relax in your home and you may even be kept awake at night. If you have kids or pets, they could also be distressed by it.
There are so many different sources of noise. The annoying noise could be coming from inside your home (e.g. creaky floorboards or noisy roommates) or it could be an external source (such as traffic or neighbors). In all cases, there are ways of reducing these noises. Below are just a few tips for making your home less noisy.
Soundproof your walls
There are several measures you can take to stop noise travelling through walls. A simple option could be to muffle sound by placing furniture against the wall such as wardrobes or sofas. A more effective option is to use soundproof acoustic plasterboard or soundproof mineral wool. This can be installed inside the wall or on the wall (the latter option is the easiest option).
Soundproof your windows and doors
Noise ranging from traffic to wind can often travel through windows and doors. As with walls, there are lots of different ways to make your windows and doors soundproof. With windows, you can muffle sound by filling gaps in frames, using acoustic window inserts, using soundproof glass, hanging up thick curtains or installing shutters. With doors, you can muffle sound by sealing gaps or by upgrading the material of your doors. Make sure that doors are not a source of noise by keeping hinges lubricated to prevent sqeaking or by adding felt pads to reduce slamming sounds.
Fix up your flooring
Certain flooring materials like stone tiles and laminate can create a lot of noise when people walk over them. It’s possible to use acoustic insulation to stop noise travelling down to rooms below. Switching to carpet or using rugs is another popular option for muffling sound. Make sure to fix any creaky floorboards – these can often be a source of noise in old homes.
Install outdoor ‘noise buffers’
If external noises like traffic, crowds or trains are keeping you awake at night, consider whether it’s possible to muffle these sounds with noise buffers. Fencing installation could be a simple option – consider installing thick wooden fencing to help block out noise. You can also use trees to block out noise. Brick walls can also help to deflect noise.
Confront/report noisy neighbors
It’s important to tell your neighbors if they are being noisy. In most cases, neighbors will make an effort to be less noisy whether it’s turning down the music volume or moving a drum kit into another room. Some sources of noise can be more awkward to confront such as arguments – calling the police may be a better option if things are getting very hostile. Similarly, you should make a noise complaint to your local council if neighbors are continuing to play music loudly or ignore your requests to be quiet.
Wear earplugs to bed
If you can’t sleep because of traffic noise, noisy neighbors or overhead airplanes, another option could be to simply wear earplugs. In some noisy areas, it is impossible to block out all noise (especially if you rent property and cannot renovate it) and so earplugs are the best option. Explore different types of earplugs.
Choose quieter appliances
You can also reduce noise around the home by switching to quieter appliances. A quieter tumble dryer or washing machine could give the option to use it at night without the risk of waking up kids. Most modern appliances tend to be quieter than older ones – if you’ve got very old appliances, consider upgrading them.