If you work in a noisy industry, making your place of work soundproof will allow you to have a more amicable relationship with your neighbors and will make sure that you don’t violate any sound level laws and regulations. Here are five ways you can make existing work premises soundproof.
1. Install metal ceilings
Certain types of metal ceilings are designed to absorb sound. The kinds of metal ceilings which will help you soundproof your space include ceiling rafts, suspended ceilings, linear ceilings, polynodal ceilings, open cell ceilings and ceiling baffles. This last type is effective not only at deadening background noise but also at making speech clearer, which is why they are particularly popular in educational settings and conference centers.
2. Install acoustic wall panels
The ceiling is not the only place where you can install soundproofing materials, and another common way to increase soundproofing is to install acoustic panels on the walls. These panels are typically made of fabric or foam, as soft materials tend to absorb sound much more effectively than hard surfaces. Acoustic wall panels are a good way to reduce echo, so you should consider installing some—possibly in conjunction with a metal ceiling—if you need to soundproof a music hall or a conference room.
3. Hang up some curtains
As mentioned above, soft furnishings are an excellent and inexpensive way to absorb sound. Therefore, a good trick to improve the soundproofing of your business premises is to choose curtains over shutters or blinds. Blackout curtains are particularly effective for this purpose, and will have the added bonus of allowing you to make the room dark at any time of the day, which is often useful in performance spaces and in situations where projectors might be used, such as conferences and lectures.
4. Use soundproof doors
The door is usually the thinnest point between a room and another room, or between the building and the street. It is very important, therefore, that you choose soundproof doors for your space for the best sound isolation results. A soundproof door may be made of wood, steel, glass or fiberglass, which means that you can achieve a wide variety of aesthetic looks for your space while ensuring that it remains soundproof. One of the most important things when installing a soundproof door is to ensure that there are as few gaps between the door and the doorframe as possible, as noise will obviously escape through any gaps. You can also use weatherstripping to improve soundproofing—this is a self-adhesive strip you apply to the edges of your door to seal air leaks, and it will also help you control the temperature in the room by eliminating any drafts.
5. Soundproof your floors
Finally, sound will escape through the floors as much as through the ceiling and the walls. To minimize this, you can cover your floors in rubber mats similar to those used in a gym, install carpets or use rugs, which will make your space look cozy and homely.