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Setting up the home theatre system is really cool. Right?
But when I first set up my home theatre. The sounds from the house were easily coming to the room. That’s why my movie experience was not that good. When I tried to suppress that sound with the increased volume of the movie then my neighbors were complaining about the sound the other day. I was feeling like Justin Bieber that the police would arrest me for throwing a massive party, which I was not doing by the way. But I was afraid!
That’s why I wanted to soundproof my home theatre room. Now I succeed in achieving this goal.
I will share with you how exactly I did that in this blog post by answering your question of how to soundproof a home theater room.
At A Glance: Well, A home theater can easily be soundproof in simple steps like stuffing the holes in the door, installing soundproof blankets on it, removing the ductwork from the room, making the walls soundproof, and installing specialized curtains.
Keep reading. We will be discussing each one with step-by-step instructions.
Treating The Home Theater Sound (Step By Step)
Now here comes the practical step-by-step procedure of how to soundproof your home theatre room.
To make it short and effective, I have to share 4 steps with you.
1. How To Make Home theater soundproofing walls?
Home theatre walls can be soundproof in 4 simple steps.
1. Wall Decoupling
This can be understood easily if you bring the picture of a nice sandwich in your mind.
In this process, you build another wall next to the existing wall, and between them, you add soundproofing material such as Mineral wool, Polyurethane, cork, spray foam, or wood wool.
2. Furnish The Wall With Sound Absorbing material
Cover the whole wall with sound-absorbing material and furnish it. I have a friend in Michigan, she covers the whole wall with a soft carpet. Now her home theatre looks really nice and also that carpet absorbs sound rather than reflecting it back to make unwanted noise.
Such a great idea she implemented. Isn’t it.
If you are planning of installing acoustic panels on the walls then follow my this DIY acoustic panels installations. It is very important to calculate the height and width of each panel.
3. Restricting the vibration of impact sound
Thin doors and walls vibrate too much upon hitting by impact sound. To eliminate this problem you have to add huge mass to the wall and doors so that it does not vibrate so easily. You can add mass to the wall by insulation material, material like foam, or anything you like that will stop the vibrations. You can do this in the decoupling process.
The same technique should be followed while following my guide to building a home theater seating platform.
4. Fill the possible passages of sound
There can be a lot of possible leakages for sound to go through. This can be cracks and empty places in anything like walls, doors, or windows. Fill those up to soundproof the room even more.
2. Soundproofing home theater doors
You can make any door soundproof in five different ways.
1. Fill in the hollowness
If your room door is not solid and empty from the inside, the sound will likely pass through. How to find out that your door is empty from the inside? just knock on your door and listen if you hear the echo of that knock. Now you know that the door is empty and you have to fill it.
It can be done in two steps:
- Make the door solid with some kind of cork or wood.
- This second method is easy. You will have to fill the door with insulation spray foam. you will need a few cans of those. Check this Amazon choice foam spray on Amazon.
How to apply spray foam to a Door?
- Just drill a hole in the door
- The hole must be the size of the spray straw that comes with the spray.
- Started from the bottom and go up
- You have to drill holes when you are going from bottom to top and fill the door with the foam
2. Install door sweeps
There are gaps at the bottom of almost every door. Sound can easily go through those gaps.
You can fill these gaps in two ways, one cheap and the other will cost you a few dollars.
- Cheap method
Place a beautiful rug that you have already in your house, close to the gap of the door. Now the gap will be filled and the area will also look beautiful.
2. Cost you a few dollars
Buy a sweep for your door. This sweep can easily be stuffed into the gap. There are even more pro types of sweeps that can be screwed to the door. Check this Amazon choice door sweep on Amazon.
3. Install weather strips across the Door
The soundproofing ability of a door can easily be improved by these weather strips. These strips are used to stop the air but they can also be used for soundproofing.
It can best be used to fix the wobbling of the door too. Just attach it to the area of a frame where the door comes into contact when it is closed. This will fix the wobbling of the door and will also stop the sound from coming in. Check this Amazon choice weather-strips on Amazon.
4. Fill the gaps In the Door
You have to fill all the gaps in the door. In order to detect these gaps, you have to turn off all the lights inside the room and keep the lights on at the outside of the room.
Now you will be able to see the light coming through these gaps. You can fill these gaps with some soundproof sealant.
The best practice will be to apply this step before installing weatherstrips.
5. Install Soundproof Door blankets
There is a reason why I am going to explain about Door blankets at the end. Because this might be the only thing to soundproof your door. if it is installed properly you may not need anything above from the list. But these blankets don’t come cheap. They are a little bit expensive.
They are made with sound-absorbing material like fiberglass. Check this soundproof blanket on Amazon.
3. Soundproof Home Theater Floor
You know! A lot of people suggest using very expensive methods for soundproofing the floor. Those methods also require a construction process too. But here I am going to share a very cheap and DIY method for that. It can be done in 3 simple steps.
This will also solve one audio problem out of the 17 Frustrating Home Theater Problems
1. Reducing the sound by Carpeting The Floor
We all know that the tiles and wood flooring is becoming luxury and also feel nice to have in your house. But the sound beneath you can easily travel to your room from the room below. Soft and very thick carpets can reduce this sound to some extent.
2. Sound-stopping rubber mats
These types of rubber Mats are usually seen in the gym. They are very effective in stopping the sound from coming through the floor.
You can reduce the sound even better By furnishing the floor with these mats and after that carpeting the Mats with soft and thick carpet. These will dramatically reduce the sound.
3. Using mass-loading vinyl
These mass-loading vinyls are very dense and can be a really good sound barrier. Many people used it both on the wall and the floor.
The only negative thing about this is that you have to screw them to the floor.
4. Combination of all these three materials
You can use all these three in combination to reduce the sound effectively. Just apply the vinyl to the floor then the rubber mat and carpet on top of both the mat and vinyl.
This will help you, even more, to win against unwanted noise.
4. Installing Soundproof Curtains For Home Theater
The soundproofing curtains are much bigger, thicker, and denser than the normal curtains. These curtains are thick and dense because they can observe the sound and stop it from bleeding into the room.
Many online stores will want to fool their customers and they will give soundproof tags to any thicker than usual curtains.
But be careful.
Soundproof curtains should be long enough that they can reach the floor. These curtains should cover the whole window and should exceed 3.5 inches beyond the window to the surface of the wall. According to experts, only 1% of the gap or uncovered area can easily allow 50% of sound to bleed in.
These curtains will also help you to not repeat this one newbie mistake out of the 17 Fun Killer Home Theater Mistakes
How effective are these curtains?
If your theatre room is close to a noisy street or close to your neighbors that play loud music or partying usually. Then honestly speaking, these curtains won’t help you that much. Yes, it will still help you to stop some of that sound from coming in but not all of them.
In this case, you really need good quality soundproofing Windows.
If the theatre room is away from Noise Street and neighbors then yes these curtains do help you stop some of the sounds from coming into the room.
Check this Amazon choice soundproof-curtains on Amazon.
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What about home theater soundproofing panels? Can they be used for soundproofing?
Look Soundproofing panels are a myth. People searching for soundproofing panels are actually searching for sound-absorbing material such as sound acoustic panels.
Let’s clear the confusion of many.
There is a big difference between soundproofing and absorbing.
Song proofing materials (like decoupled walls ) don’t bleed the sound out of the theatre room on the other hand, these acoustic panels absorb the sound to contain the reverberation of sound.
Although these acoustic panels do help in the acoustic treatment of home theater.
Now another question arises.
What is home theater acoustic treatment?
When a supervillain in the movie says “why so serious?”. one ray of that sound comes straight to you. Here everything is good and you hear it very well.
But speakers usually don’t work that way. Speakers splash the sound in a spherical shape. Other rays of the same sound go and hit the wall and reflect everywhere it hit the wall again. These several reflections somehow end up in your ears and you hear why so serious several times again. At this stage, your brain is really confused.
To stop the reflection of the sound, You have to do the acoustic treatment.
- You have to install acoustic panels on the walls of the room
- The first Ray of sound will come straight to you and you will hear “why so serious” clearly
- When the other rays travel and collide with the panels. The panels will absorb the sound and will stop it from reflecting back.
- hence you will not hear any echo of the sound.
Now, your brain will not be confused by several echoes of “why so serious.” it will improve the movie experience drastically.
Now I hope your mind will be clear that these are not soundproofing panels but they are sound acoustic panels.
Now if you don’t want the sound to bleed out of the home theatre, Then you really need to focus on wall treatment rather than these panels. But if you want to stop this echo then you are good to go with it.
Can a room be completely soundproof?
You can have a completely soundproof room. But to achieve that goal you should make that room airtight.
what do I mean by airtight?
There should be no air coming to the room from outside, and no air should leave the room. Wherever air travels, the sound Travels. To stop the sound, you must stop the air.
This goal can be achieved by creating another room within a room. Don’t be scared. It just has to create another wall next to the existing wall.
How to do that?
I have explained this in the sound treatment section of this article. You should follow all those steps to make the theater room soundproof.
Pro Tip: Remove ductwork from the theatre room. Because sound will easily pass through that. if you apply all the steps above and do not remove the ductwork, all our efforts will go in vain. You have to install a separate heating system or cooling system within the theatre room.
After that, you will see an effective soundproofing treatment.
Which soundproof material is best for theaters and why?
You will have to soundproof many areas of the theater room that’s why you will need separate suggestions for each one.
The best material for floor soundproofing is a nice huge-mass carpet. Why? Because this will also give a nice decorative touch to the room and will also absorb a lot of sounds.
For the wall, I will suggest going for blow-in insulation. Why? Because this is easy to find and also easy to install between the two walls that we have talked about in this article.
For doors, I will suggest you use soundproof door blankets. Why? Because this can cover the whole door easily.
For the ceiling, I will suggest designing decorative ceilings below the existing ceilings and stuffing them with blow-in insulation.
Helpful Resources For The FAQs To Read More
- Read my this guide to know more about acoustic panels installation to figure out the height, and width of the panels, and also to know different types of acoustic panels. (Resource for the first answer)
- To learn more, you can read this discussion. (Resource for the second answer)
- This was my opinion, You can learn more from this website. (Resource for the third answer)
Soundproof Home Theater Room Checklist For Your DIY Action
Note: Understanding the article is mandatory for this checklist