Window soundproofing film is a practical solution for the problem of high noise penetration inside buildings near busy streets and other industrial applications. Continuous exposure to high noise levels for a long time is irritating and even creates health problems. Therefore, finding the proper soundproofing technology for windows is essential. Let’s find how to reduce noise from windows.
Is it unhealthy to live near a noisy road?
If you are living in a busy urban area, you might be having trouble with unwanted noise. The streets are always full of vehicle sounds and traffic noise. Sometimes this can be irritating that you would need to seal up yourself from all these sounds. Continuous exposure to loud traffic noises can create negative health effects. The results may vary from cognitive and psychological diseases to physiological effects. The psychological conditions are stress and poor concentration, while the physiological results might cause physical conditions like insomnia and fatigue. Noise pollution is also harmful to the cognitive development and academic performance of children.
Does window film reduce noise?
Unnecessary traffic noises can be eliminated using acoustic dampening window films. These noise-canceling window films are usually made of plastic vinyl or environmental PVC. They are adhered to using the static cling method. Therefore, no adhesives are used, and the film can be removed easily and is reusable. As a result of these films, the vibrating ability of the glass panes reduces and effectively absorbs noise. It blocks the unwanted noise and creates noise-control windows effectively.
What is Window Soundproofing Film?
You should have a solution to this problem of noise. You may not be able to stop the noise, but you can choose to avoid hearing the noise. As most of the sound penetrated through windows and other similar spaces, using a proper method to seal the windows can control or eliminate the noise. Hence, the technology of soundproofing films comes into use.
The technology of soundproofing film works like the noise cancellation in headphones. There is an inner layer, located between two layers of material. This combination is responsible for the blocking of sound and makes you work and sleep better. This inner layer is defined as the core layer and significantly reduces the noise penetration.
This soundproofing film also works the other way around. No one passing by can hear your private conversations inside the house. The best method to install this film is to apply it on a double-layer window which consists of internal and external glass. Then the film would act as a dampening film to reduce noise by a considerable amount. Since most people have a single-layer window, the film would be applied on one side.
Does window soundproofing really work?
The windows are a major source through which sound from the outside gets to the inside of your home or office building. Therefore, using noise reduction window films on the windows really helps reduce the sound penetration. The Sound Transmission Class (STC) of a film determines the efficiency at which it reduces the sound waves. If this factor is supportive, then other soundproofing methods would not be required.
The polymer materials used in this film are strengthened by transparent lamination. The external sound is absorbed by the first layer of polymer while the second layer prevents it from being transmitted inside. So noise-canceling window films do work and it really blocks the noises. Some innovative forms of window soundproofing films have an additional feature that creates music from built-in speakers in the middle of the film. This is a very modern, futuristic product that may not be commonly available in stores. But this would be an ideal product that would enhance the lifestyle of people.
How can I make my windows soundproof?
To make your windows soundproof with this window film, you can either get it done by an experienced professional or opt to do it yourself. If you are planning to install your window films, you can go for convenient DIY film kits. You can even make your own noise reduction window film by applying a layer of Environmental PVC or plastic vinyl films. This would reduce the intensity of sound waves that travel through your window. This is a cheaper method that you can try as a remedy. But it is always a better option to get proper soundproof films installed by a technician for best results.
Why should you use a soundproofing film?
The windows are made of comparatively thinner material, unlike the walls of a building. Therefore, most of the light, heat, and sound pass into the building through the windows. Installation of noise reduction window films has many advantages. Let’s find what these are.
- The sound dampening is the most prominent advantage and the main purpose of these window films. As the surface of the film is softer than glass, the sound waves would not be reflected in the same path and create obstruction. It would also cover any cracks and gaps on the window. Thus, it helps to create a peaceful interior.
- Reduction of external noise from getting inside would help to improve the health condition of the occupants. People suffering from insomnia and other sleeping disorders can get highly benefited through this. It also improves the quality of sleep of the residents.
- There are some health conditions where people are extremely sensitive to noise. If you keep getting unwanted extreme noise inside your home, such health conditions can get even worse. To avoid this effect, installing proper soundproof films would be a good idea.
- Soundproof films work with almost all types of glass. So, it would save you from replacing your windows with acoustic glass to reduce noise.
- The energy-saving ability is a common feature in soundproof films. It is all about blocking heat from entering during hot seasons and preventing heat from escaping during cold seasons. This helps the internal temperature regulation of the building and hence saves electricity. As most window films have additional UV protection ability, it also helps reduce harmful effects on skin and interior property.
- These window films are available in colored or tinted nature. Therefore, you can even choose a film that secures your privacy. This is beneficial if you are in an apartment with windows facing each other. You can also enhance the aesthetic appeal of your windows by choosing a proper design.
Other options to soundproof your Home or Office
There are other options to soundproof your home. However, these methods would be less efficient than using a soundproof window film.
Install Clear MLV
If you cannot install noise-canceling window film, you can try Mass-Loaded Vinyl as it has really good soundproofing properties. However, you would have to use transparent tape to attach the MLV to the window panes.
Add Another Layer to the Window
One reason for inefficient soundproof might be that your window glasses being too thin. So you can install double-layer windows. Adding an extra acrylic layer to the window would reduce the noise getting inside, but would not cancel the noise completely. For best results, the window needs to feature acoustic glass or laminated glass. Since acrylic glass shout be fitted right over the window, perhaps you might need to install a new window frame. This is an expensive task. But it is popular among users as it allows abundant sunlight to get inside through the windows.
Use Window Plugs
Using window plugs is a convenient option for anyone who needs maximum silence. This is ideal for music studios. But, people don’t like having layers of window mats, foam, and wood going over the window as it blocks not only sound but also light. This is a major drawback as the occupants can’t have access to sunlight. This might even harm indoor plants and pets. The advantage is that it can be removed easily when not required.
Weather-Stripping and Draft Stoppers
Even a small space between the glass and window frame is enough to let a lot of noise pass inside. So, even the best window film would not work well with the required efficiency if there are any cracks or gaps in between. You can use weather-stripping tape and DIY draft stoppers to fix this and seal the openings. Weather-stripping tapes are available in different materials such as silicone, foam, and rubber. They are directly useable.
You can choose the material of tape based on the friction you will be subjecting the tape to. The intensity of sunlight would also affect this, as materials like rubber lose their efficiency faster than closed-cell foam and silicone tapes. For best results, the weather-stripping tape should be applied to well-cleaned surfaces.
Adjust the Frame
Even if you are going to apply weather-stripping tape, all gaps should be eliminated. For this, the window frame should be adjusted properly. Acoustic caulk can be used to fill the gaps between the window and its frame to prevent the passing of both air and sound inside. As acoustic caulk is flexible, it does not need to be replaced often. This can be installed around the window and would be in function for a long time.
Rearrange the Furniture
You can dampen the sound that comes inside by rearranging some furniture pieces around the window. If you completely block the window with a cupboard or so, you can eliminate sound further. However, it might not be a good solution as it blocks the sunlight as well.
Does Noise Blocking Curtains Really Work?
Soundproofing curtains are another good method used to block outside noise. You can also increase your privacy at the same time. You get to choose from a wide range of designs and patterns to suit your home or office interior. These curtains are thick than normal curtains. They would reduce the echo of noise as the surface is soft. The sound would not be reflected, as when they hit the walls. However, they would not completely block all the noise. This can be used as an additional step to reduce noise.
How to Choose the Best Soundproofing Method
There are many soundproofing methods that can be used in both residential and commercial buildings. However, identifying the best method for your requirement is important. Making the right choice depends on certain factors.
- Identify your soundproofing requirement. Decide the level of noise reduction or elimination you need. The soundproofing films can reduce the noise level up to 5 decibels. In medical terms, a person should not be exposed to sound over 78 decibels. Therefore, if the interior is still noisy even after installing proper window film, additional soundproofing methods would have to be followed.
- Decide whether you need a temporary or permanent solution. Especially if you are not the owner of the building, you might not need to go for permanent solutions. If you are looking for a solution for your permanent residence, then it is better to go for a long-lasting solution.
- Find the exact number of windows that requires to be soundproofed. Knowing the exact windows that should be sound-proofed would give you the best results. It would also be cost-effective.
- Finally, decide whether you are planning to hire a professional technician or try doing it yourself. The technicians might be able to do the work with a better finish. But doing it yourself would save you from the additional cost of labor.
- The budget is a major concern as you need to decide on the amount of money you wish to spend on the task. Before you get the work done, make sure to calculate all the costs. This should be done in the initial stage of planning.
How Much Do Window Soundproofing Film Cost?
The high-quality noise reduction window films with added security would cost somewhere around $2 to $7 per meter. However, the general soundproof film with decorative features would cost less than that, probably around $1 per square meter. The soundproof glasses would be much expensive. They would cost over $1,000 for a 3 by 5 foot window.
The Do’s of Installing a Window Soundproofing Film
There are some things that you need to do to get the soundproofing done correctly. These tips would help you make it a success.
Determine the noise that bothers you
There are certain levels of noise that can be tolerated depending on the occupants. So, you can find the correct method depending on your personal needs. You might even need to make some adjustments before the window soundproofing film is installed. Maximum noise cancellation is required for people who need to concentrate on their work. This would also be an ideal solution for people who study and work from home.
Personalize the solution
Check out the ideal design or pattern that suits your decoration. Choose the film based on your light preference and aesthetic appeal. You can even add curtains to increase the efficiency. Choose the film on your preference as it’s you who will be living in the space.
Don’ts of Installing a Window Sound Proofing Film
Just as the tips that you need to follow, there are some things that you should avoid in the installation of the soundproof film.
Don’t pick low-grade material.
Do not choose low-quality material for your windows, whether it is glass or film. If the glass is too thin and poor, then it should be replaced before installing the window film.
Don’t ignore the gaps.
Do not install the window film while there are spaces and gaps between the window frame and glass. This would reduce the efficiency of soundproofing.
Are These Window Films Worth The Investment?
The window soundproofing films are used mostly in buildings facing busy streets. They are very effective in the reduction of noise that penetrates the buildings through windows. However, sound may still get inside other cracks and spaces left between doors. Considering the overall benefits offered by these window films, it can be recommended that installing soundproofing films are worth the investment. So you can also try out these window films if you live in a noisy area and need to make your interior more calm and peaceful.
The noise level inside the home can affect the quality of life. This is especially important for people living in busy neighborhoods with heavy traffic. If you cannot move to a distant area that is quieter, the best option is to reduce the noise that comes inside. This is where the window soundproofing films come into use. So choosing the right product with optimized preparation of the window can give you the best results. As there are various types of window films available in the market, picking the right choice is essential.
The most exciting fact is that these window films are still being observed, studied, and researched. Therefore, there is a very high probability that more advanced products would be developed in the industry. At the moment, you would have to go for the currently available products. So we hope the facts discussed here helped you learn all that you need to know about window soundproofing. You can find similar solutions for your home window tinting and commercial window tinting.