Improving the soundproofing of your home can be conducted in many ways, but the windows are a problem area. This is because an average home lets more sound from the outside in via its glazing – on both doors and windows – than it does through its floor, roof and walls. If you live close to a noisy bar, a busy road or in the vicinity of an industrial site, then soundproofing your windows makes a lot of sense. In addition, people who are noisier than average at home – for example, musicians who practice their instruments in their dwelling – may like to consider soundproofing their glazing for the reverse reason: to stop sound leaking outwards. Either way, you can take the following steps.
Install Tertiary Glazing
Tripled glazed windows are much more efficient at blocking noise transference from one side of the panes to the other than either single or double glazing. The glazing itself traps the energy of the sound waves that hit it and disperse the vibrations towards the frame. Simply put, three layers of glass do this better than two. In addition, the air that is trapped between the layers of glass – two of them, in the case of triple glazing – have a muffling effect. If you cannot afford new window units throughout your home, then just replace those which face the noisiest areas. Alternatively, opt for soundproofing plugs which act like an additional third layer of glass that can be added to conventional double glazing units.
Shutters are the stylistic way of preventing sound from make its way into your home. External shutters look attractive, and when you pull them shut at night, they will block a phenomenal amount of noise. This is the ideal way of blocking sound getting into an upstairs bedroom, for example, helping you to get a good night's sleep. Furthermore, internal shutters can have the same effect on a living room. When you have louvred slats on an internal shutter, you can still allow light into your home during the day but create enough of a physical barrier such that the noisiest sounds are diminished. They're good if you overlook a main road because they afford your home a certain amount of privacy as well as helping to soundproof it.
If you have lots of reflective surfaces around a window, then noises from outside can bounce around and seem amplified, in some cases. Hang heavier curtains at either side of a window to reduce the amount hard surface area and to create sound baffles. Place a rug underneath a window, especially floor-to-ceiling ones or glazed patio doors, to soak up the sound and make your window act less like an acoustic resonator.