How to soundproof a Dorm Room (Easy Methods)

How to soundproof a Dorm Room
soundproof a Dorm Room

How to soundproof a Dorm Room: There are times when it’s tough to ask your roommates to lower their loud sound system’s volume. A disagreement or argument could ensue since everyone wants to play music in their own unique style.

How then can you handle this issue? The easiest way to do this is to soundproof your dorm room.

If you’re trying to study or sleep, all the noise from the outside, the neighbors, and the creaks and moans of the dorm can be deafening.

The good news is that there are solutions to soundproof your dorm room that doesn’t violate dorm rules. Take these actions only after you’ve learned the rules first.

Getting into trouble or breaching your contract isn’t something you want to happen. This article explain the various ways you can soundproof a college dorm, the types of noise and many more related to soundproofing a room.

Types of noise in a dorm room:

Airborne Noise:

Airborne noise is a sound that travels through the air, known as “airborne sound.” Speech is the most common source of airborne sound; Radio and television.

When something makes noise, it releases energy into the system (soundwaves). Sound waves are picked up by a medium, such as air, and in this case, the medium is the air itself.

Structure-Borne Noise:

When you hear a ball bouncing on the floor above you or a knock on the wall next to you in your dorm room, you’re experiencing noise that is carried by the building.

Impacting a ball on the floor produces sound waves. When an object hits a structure, such as a wall, ceiling, or door, sound waves aren’t carried by air, but rather by the structure itself, which is why this sort of noise is called structure-borne noise.

What is the difference between structure borne and airborne noise?

Air and solid objects are the primary sound-transmitting mediums in the built environment, according to the field of architectural acoustics (BA).

Airborne noise is a term used to describe the noise that has been transported through the atmosphere. It’s called structure-borne noise when it comes from a solid object.

How to soundproof a dorm room

1. Use a Carpet or Rug:

This is the most popular way to soundproof a dorm room. Although the carpet can reduce impact noise, such as footsteps, the sound of something dropping on the floor, or furniture being dragged around, it is not nearly as good as other noise-reducing materials when dealing with airborne noise.

Because of this, if you have a noisy neighbor below you, your carpeting may keep their home free of your footsteps, but it will do nothing to muffle the noise of their music or talk.

Your dorm’s floor also acts as a major sound conductor. The majority of college dorm rooms have bare floors and no carpets. Sound absorption isn’t going to be much better even if the carpet is a thin, plain one.

More so, add some carpeting on the floor to assist muffle noise and make the space look more stylish at the same time. Even if the room is already carpeted, you can reduce noise by placing an area rug on top of it.

Soundproofing your carpeted floor is a great way to reap multiple benefits. Of course, the most obvious benefit is the reduction of external noise, particularly that carried by air.

The carpeting may be made more pleasant by adding a thicker and more resilient layer underneath your bare feet by soundproofing it. This will not only make your carpet survive longer but also look nicer and provide more insulation.

2. Use Pictures to soundproof:

Another amazing way to soundproof a dorm room is decorate the walls with artwork or other artifacts. Placing these objects near doors or other potentially noisy entry points can help reduce noise in the room.

Even greater soundproofing can be achieved by filling the back of the room with newspaper, egg cartons, or Styrofoam.

While decorating your room won’t totally silence the noises that enter your space, it can reduce them significantly. And you may add some flair to your home, such as with the use of rugs.

Sound can be reduced by strategically placing pictures on the wall. Decorative wall hangings were big in college. Even though they’re out of style these days, soft wall decor like canvas prints can nevertheless assist (notably, without glass).

Artwork made of soundproof padding claims to be ten times more effective at absorbing noise than foam panels.

Egg cartons and Styrofoam are two low-cost options for sound absorption. Despite the fact that they are more affordable for the ordinary college student, these aren’t as beautiful and don’t reduce noise as well.

3. Windows + Curtains:

When it comes to soundproofing, windows are among the room’s most challenging features. Because they are made of hard materials, they not only transmit sound but also reflect it back into the room.

Unfortunately, soundproofing windows is a difficult task. In order to truly soundproof a college dorm, you must take into account the windows.

Hanging thicker window coverings is one of the best ways to reduce noise. In order to prevent or absorb sound, soundproofing curtains need to be dense enough.

Because they’re decorative as well as functional, soundproof curtains are an excellent addition to any area.

Read more: How to mount tv in a college dorm (Easy Process + No Holes)

How to soundproof a dorm room with windows:

1. Install window inserts:

Soundproofing window inserts are the most efficient approach to prevent noise pollution, such as honking car horns, wailing sirens, or music blasting from next door.

In the window frame, 5 inches in front of the inside face of your current window. It reduces noise more than double-pane windows because the insert prevents most sound vibrations from traveling through the glass (more on these ahead).

In addition to laminated glass, which effectively prevents vibrations, other materials such as polycarbonate and polyurethane are also useful.

2. Use double-pane equivalents:

A lawnmower or passing automobile may be enough of a nuisance to warrant upgrading to double-pane windows.

In contrast to single-pane windows, which contain only one pane of glass, double-pane windows have two panes of glass sandwiched between by an air space. In the absence of an air barrier, single-pane windows let in virtually all kinds of outside noise.

3. Use acoustic caulk to fill gaps:

Outside noise can enter your dorm through small gaps between window frames and inner walls, preventing your windows from functioning up to their STC rating.

Using an acoustic caulk, like Green Glue Noiseproofing Sealant, is an easy solution to cover these gaps. Maintaining windows’ STC while keeping the windows open and closed is possible thanks to this latex-based solution.

4. Use sound-dampening curtains:

In order to reduce the amount of noise that enters the room (soundproof a Dorm Room), heavier fabrics like velvet often include vinyl or similar material lining.

They also help to reduce echoes, so that any noise you hear in the house fades away fast and easily. If you’re concerned about sleep being disrupted by noises such as crickets and birds chirping, these drapes are a better option.

4. Use Noise Cancelling Headphones:

Using noise-canceling headphones is your only option if all else has failed. It’s best to wear them when the noise level is unbearable, such as when you’re studying for an exam or writing a term paper.

The noise-canceling headphones produce a sound wave that’s nearly identical to the noise that’s being absorbed by the headphones. Headphones emit sound waves that are 180 degrees out of phase with the incoming wave.

So, the noise-canceling headset generates one wave, and the ambient noise generates the other. Each one has the same amplitude and frequency, but their rarefaction and compression lines are aligned so that they cancel each other out.

One wave’s compression is aligned with the other, which is called destructive interference. As a result of this phenomenon, you can only hear what you want to hear.

5. Try a White Noise Machine:

Disturbing noise from the outside can be effectively muffled with a white noise machine.

A relaxing “whoosh” sound can be heard coming from it, masking the outside noise. The peaceful sound of the machine will be the only thing you hear.

To put it another way, you’re essentially utilizing sound to remove sound here. Because it masks outside noise, white noise is useful for concentration.

More so, because it “fills in” the gaps between the noises of the outer world, it reduces their volume.

Read more: Can you wear hats in College? (Quick & Best Answer)


Despite the fact that college dorms are noisy, they don’t have to ruin your time there. If you use a combination of these tips, you’ll be able to enjoy the benefits of living in a dorm while also getting some much-needed quiet time.

If you’re soundproofing your dorm, realize that you’ll never be able to entirely eliminate all noise. But if you’re able to turn down the volume on most of the noise, you’ll be able to focus better and fall asleep easier.

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