It is often said that sound escapes much like water, if there is a crack or hole, sound will escape. Preventing this sound from escaping can be solved with a number of solutions and products on the market.
One of the more simple ways to reduce sound penetrating a wall is to add a product such as Silent Wrap. This mass loaded vinyl product is an effective sound barrier. During the construction phase of a house, Silent Wrap can be added to the studs before the drywall is installed. What if you are beyond that and you are looking to solve the noise within an existing structure or room? On existing homes where there is already an installed drywall, the product can be mounted directly to the drywall and then cover over with a new layer of drywall.
The mass of Silent Wrap does a lot of work deadening the energy of the sound waves that hit it. Although sometimes with all the hard work of the install, sometimes cracks and gaps in the wall will show up and still allow sound to escape. To combat this, there are a few tricks of the trade that can be used with great success.
Acoustical caulking should be the next line of defense. Applied wherever two different planes meet, ie wall and floor, acoustical caulking will go a long way to halt sound getting through spaces that are almost impossible to get rid of.
Another area that is a common area of concern is electrical outlets and boxes. These are often overlooked but a simple fix is possible. A product such as SilentPutty Pads is the answer. It is flexible, pliable and can be contoured for a perfect fit. These are installed over the junction box during wall construction while the studs are still accessible.
Lastly, adding an absorber between the studs is an excellent way to dampen sound and reduce any sound waves that penetrate the installed Silent Wrap. Probably the quickest and easiest way to add sound absorption between the studs on a wall is to use Handi Foam Sound Barrier Spray Foam. This expanding foam will not only add a layer of absorber in the wall but will also fill cracks and crevices that may go unnoticed.
The variety of products available on the market to combat noise problems can make it confusing for the DIY’ers. The products listed above are just a few that can help. However, with careful research, cost-effective solutions can be found and with minimal work, you can be on your road to creating a space that is much quieter.