Soundproofing a room can be expensive when using specific soundproofing materials. Many people wonder if you can use less costly objects such as carpet and carpet padding to soundproof walls. The short answer is that carpets can be effective in soundproofing.
Carpet is good for soundproofing walls as it can absorb sounds and echoes. It’s a relatively cheaper option for soundproofing. According to home studio experts, using multiple layers of dense material such as carpet and carpet padding can effectively soundproof a room.
In this article, I’ll go into detail about how carpet is an excellent material for soundproofing walls. I’ll also cover the best types of carpet for soundproofing and the cost of the carpet.
Although carpet won’t completely block out the noise, it’ll help muffle outside sounds. When used on walls, it helps block out other noises like music, instruments, the T.V., and people’s voices. And when used on the floor, it dampens footsteps.
There are products made specifically for soundproofing that’ll probably give you better results. However, carpet padding is the best cheap option for soundproofing materials and will do an excellent job when done correctly.
Carpet padding is good for soundproofing walls as it increases the effectiveness of carpet by adding an extra layer of material under the carpet. It adds cushion and aids in muffling sounds. Carpet padding works best when used with the carpet but can still reduce some level of noise on its own.
To determine which carpet or padding is best for soundproofing, you must look at its noise reduction coefficient. This coefficient indicates how well a material absorbs or reflects sounds, on a scale of 0.0 to 1.00.
Materials closer to 1.00 have better soundproofing qualities, while those closer to 0.0 tend to reflect sound. These numbers are measured in an acoustic lab by professionals.
Most carpets have soundproofing capabilities, but the thicker the carpet, the better. You can get various materials such as wool, linen, nylon, silk, cotton, and synthetic fibers.
Wool is probably your best choice for soundproofing as it’s thicker, more porous, and heavier. That’s why it has a higher noise reduction coefficient than other carpet types.
Carpet paddings made of foam, rubber, and fiber are desirable for soundproofing. Each material is slightly different in its soundproofing properties, so some are more effective than others.
Rubber has a higher noise reduction coefficient, making it a better choice. Foam is also a common ingredient in soundproofing products often. So, you can always use foam and rubber carpet padding to maximize results.
People use carpet to soundproof because it’s cheaper than other materials made specifically for soundproofing.
Prices range from $1.00 to $12.00 per square foot, depending on the type and color you choose. Carpet padding will range from $0.50 to $5.00 per square foot, depending on the kind of padding.
Amazon has plenty of carpet options. The Koeckritz Peel-and-Stick Carpet Tiles (Amazon) are made of wool and recycled materials, making them an affordable and effective soundproofing option.
If you don’t want to do that, there’s also this XFasten Double-Sided Carpet Tape (Amazon) that can help you attach the carpet to your walls without damaging them. There’s also this XCEL Marine Roll (Amazon) to put underneath the carpet. These foam rubber pads are extremely durable and come in various thicknesses.
You’ll want to use carpet padding on the walls first and then layer the carpet on top of it for optimal results. The more layers, the better, so feel free to add several of each.
You’ll also need an adhesive to attach the squares if you don’t get peel-and-stick ones.
If you’d like to go the more permanent route, you can always staple the carpet to the wall, using a staple gun.
If you’re using adhesive tape for the carpet squares, this youtube video explains how to do that for the floor, which is similar to how it would be done on the wall.
You can also apply regular carpet glue used for carpeting floors if you want to go that permanent route.
Here’s a youtube video showing you how to do that.
According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, federal regulations have been in place since 1971 to ensure that all carpets passed what is called the Pill Test .
This test determines how flammable a material is and whether or not a fire will spread on that surface when there is no intervention. If a carpet passes the test, that means it will not spread a fire in its first stages.
This doesn’t mean the carpet is completely fireproof, but it won’t spread a fire or make a fire worse. So, you don’t have to worry too much about fires when soundproofing your walls with carpet.
Also, wool carpet has the lowest flammability rating out of the different types of carpet, making it very safe to use for soundproofing walls.
The most flammable fabrics are cotton and polyester, so I suggest not using those for soundproofing your walls.
Carpet is the best choice when looking for a cheaper option to soundproof your walls.
There are several options for carpet and carpet padding. The higher the noise reduction coefficient a material has, the better it can block out sounds. Wool is the best option because it’s thick and porous. Rubber padding will be the best option for carpet padding to pair with the wool carpet.
Carpet and padding can range in price per square foot depending on the fabric and where you purchase it from. Amazon has many options available for easy installation to soundproof walls yourself.
- Home Studio Expert: Is Carpet Padding Good for Soundproofing?
- Taylor & Francis Online: Tips on Shielding and Soundproofing
- ScienceDirect: Noise and autism spectrum disorder in children: An exploratory survey
- FlooringInc.com: Carpet Buying Guide
- Lowe’s: Carpet Padding
- RealTraps: Measuring Absorption
- Home Music Producer: Is Foam Or Rubber Good For Soundproofing?.
- Continuing Education Center: Rubber Underfoot
- SFGATE: How to Attach Flooring to a Garage Wall
- U.S. Department of Commerce: Flammability Testing for Carpet
- Goldenberg Law: Flammable Clothing