Living in a busy residential road has its pros and cons. One definite disadvantage is the irritating noise. Aside from the usual buzz inside your home, you get to deal with the daily noise disturbances from the outdoor. Traffic jams, honking, pedestrian lanes, shops, and people.
The clamor seeps into the cracks of your windows and doorways and penetrates your supposed to be peaceful afternoon. It is a round-the-clock noise phenomenon that happens all at once.
Constant exposure to noises is not only irritating, but it was found out to be unhealthy. According to a Harvard research in this link, subjection to loud dissonance promotes the development of anxiety. It also increases a person’s stress levels. This could lead to serious behavioral problems such as isolation and irrational fear of noisy places.
A world without sound is melancholic and unimaginable. But, an unpleasant one that disturbs your inner peace and tranquility is a form of noise. Luckily, there is a way to hinder these external rackets from entering your haven. That is through soundproofing.
How does soundproofing work?
Soundproofing works in two ways: you can either block the noise from coming out of a room or from coming in. Generally, sounds cannot be blocked 100% but it can be significantly reduced to a point where it is not anxiously disturbing.
Like light, sound energy travels in the form of wavelengths. But, they are much harder to block than light. As the sound energy is created, the air and the surrounding objects vibrate simultaneously. Then from its source, it will travel through several mediums until it reaches our home and gets picked up by our sense of hearing.
One way to stop it is to disturb its movement by adding a medium along its path. You need to place something that will absorb the unwanted sound or prevent the air from passing through in-between the two spaces.
In the case of your home, you can consider soundproofing the gaps in your entryways such as your windows. The internet is brimming with ideas on how to soundproof a window. There are acoustic caulks, fiberglass blankets, calyx interiors, and insulators. The most popular and affordable way is to use window inserts.
Soundproof your house with window inserts
The traditional double-pane installed in your home can only block less than thirty percent of the outside noise. It also depends on the glass thickness and the distance between the window panes. Window inserts are specifically made to provide comfort by shielding you from irritable sounds, direct sunlight, and outside dust.
Installing soundproof inserts blocks over ninety percent of outdoor noises. They can be easily installed behind your original window with a few inches of space. They are made up of laminated glass with increased insulation to stop noise vibrations from entering your home.
The 4-inch space adds another barrier to prevent unpleasant sound from coming in. The space will hold the dead air that contains the sound energy and ultimately eliminate it. Some inserts are not only noise-canceling, but they are also impact resistant and UV resistant.
Window inserts are easy to install. Hardware stores and home depots can assist you in choosing the right kind of insert for your house. They will need the exact dimension, size, and type of your window.
Then, they will create a custom-cut insert to your exact specifications. Professionals can install soundproof inserts to achieve correct and quality performance.
Other sound solutions for your windows
1. Use curtains
A convenient, easy, and cheaper way to address the noise problem is by using sound deadening curtains. These curtains are made up of thick material that can absorb vibrations and reduce the echo that enters your home. Buy curtains that can cover your windows from top to bottom.
Although it is not as effective as a window insert, it is better to have something than nothing.
2. Seal the gaps
Low-quality panel installation is sometimes the problem of why unwanted sounds enter your home. Small gaps and holes in your window frames allow sound-containing air to pass through it. Patch them up with adhesives or acoustic sealants.
3. Use insulation tape
If you love DIY home projects, you can opt-in using thick insulation tapes for your window. Buy the thickest one available and place them on its sides. Make sure to cover the region between your window and windowsill.
4. Add blinds
Pair up your sound deadening curtains with soundproof blinds. Soundproof or not, adding blinds increases your barrier against external noises. As the sound passes through your window glass, blinds, and then through your curtains, the sound decibel decreases.
Although extremely loud noises are hard to block, your double barrier reduces it to a more tolerable sound.
Benefits of a soundproofed home
- Health concerns – At first glance, environmental noises do not seem to pose dangers to our health. According to WHO, long-term exposure contributes to poor concentration, less productivity, stress, fatigue, and communication difficulties (See reference: https://www.who.int/quantifying_ehimpacts/publications/e94888/en/). This leads to serious mental problems, cognitive impairment for children, tinnitus, and hearing problems.
- Life quality – Who wouldn’t enjoy a quiet and peaceful environment during their sleeping hours? Soundproofing improves the quality of life by improving our sleep. Lack of sleep causes increased irritability and anger.
- Privacy – Aside from preventing outdoor noises from entering, it also prevents inside conversations from leaking out. Also, it avoids your neighbors from being disturbed by the noise you are making.
- Increased comfort – Our homes are supposed to be havens where we can rest, relax, and have a sound sleep. Coming home to a noiseless house is what you are craving for after long hours of stressful work.
- Communication – One overlooked benefit of a soundproof house is enhanced communication. Especially for people with hearing and speech difficulties. Communication is already difficult for these people, let alone in an environment full of excessive and unpleasant sounds. Even if there is no impairment, miscommunication, and confusion are likely to happen in a house filled with the outside hubbub.
With that being said, noise isn’t just plain old noise. You may be compromising your healthy life by tolerating unhealthy and unwanted dissonance. It is time to eliminate this particular pollution from your life.