Usually, people dedicate more time to soundproofing rooms and neglect other important parts of a house or building. When you start thinking of how to soundproof your hallway, it’ll become more obvious that it is one of the often-overlooked areas in a home. You probably didn’t know a hallway could be soundproofed.
Well, it can.
Perhaps it would help if you likened a hallway to another room. With that in mind, similar methods can be used to control noise levels and ensure sound is properly controlled in the hallway.
If you have a lot of neighbours around, a shared hallway usually generate a lot of irritating noise. You may clearly hear shoe noises or chattering as people walk by. I’m sure you would keep such noise away if you could. Good news, there’s actually something you can do about it.
This article provides you with some helpful tips on how you can control noise in your hallway. Look out for obvious spots in the hallway and work your way from there.
Soundproof Hallway Doors
There’s a minimum of one door in every hallway and some may even have multiple doors. This is where you should begin soundproofing from. Spaces within or around the door will facilitate the movement of sound. Observe the gaps or spaces underneath the door. Usually, there’s a space between the door and the floor so it’s easy to open and close.
You can take care of this space by plugging the gap between the door and floor. To do this, purchase a door sweep which you can slide underneath the door. While it’ll help block out sound, the door remains fully functional. This is a simple way to remedy the door space close to the ground.
Using weighty bags or any other material to close up the gap may also work as well. Basically, you need a material to absorb and dampen sound. You can place some weather stripping around the door for a more effective. This will help protect you from hallway noise.
Naturally, closing and opening a door will generate some amount of noise, so you might not be able to avoid that sound. However, when they are closed, the doors are supposed to act as a blockade preventing the inflow and outflow of sound.
Another helpful tip for soundproofing a door is putting up blankets or curtains. That works well for windows, but can be used to cover up doors as well. The curtains will conserve noise in a room and preserve some quiet in the hallway.
A sound-absorbent blanket is also an excellent choice, especially for bedrooms. If you need to soundproof your room door so that sound doesn’t leak into the hallway to reveal your activities even when the curtains in the hallway are pulled.
Limit Echo in the Hallway
Echo is a characteristic of empty rooms and hallways of course. Usually sound travels in the air and in empty rooms it bounces off of hard surfaces to create echoes. Summarily, noise is reflected in empty rooms from the ceiling, floors and any other hard surfaces.
This means that you get more noise when you talk in a bare room because there’s enough space for the sound waves to bounce off hard surfaces. No matter how little noise is made, it echoes because there are no softer surfaces or furniture to absorb the sound.
To solve the echo problem in the hallway, you may need to fix it up like a room itself. There a few features you can add to your hallway to make it look sophisticated and also reduce the reflection of noise-causing echo in the hallway.
A rug is a nice option for your hallway floors. It helps with soundproofing and also looks good. Softer surfaces help to absorb sound thereby preventing the occurrence of echo in your hallway. The rug will cushion sound effects from squeaky floors as well.
A rug will definitely be worth the investment for your hallway.
Of course, a thicker rug will perform better at sound absorption than the not-so-thick ones. For a bit quieter and some style on your hallway, consider purchasing a rug.
You’ll kill two birds with one stone.
The next thing you should look after sorting out your floors – are your walls. Every wall can often be described as hard surfaces that reflect sound. It is not uncommon to find hallways with bare walls which gives it a boring appearance and perpetrates echo as well. You can add some objects to your wall to fill it up a bit.
You can hang up some pictures or paint on your wall for decoration and sound absorption. If you’re up for it, put up a bookshelf and it’ll go a long way to dampen sound especially if you fill it up with books.
There’s also the option of going for acoustic panels. You can get some and place them on your walls too to help prevent echoes. Acoustic panels are sold by a number of companies, so you can easily get access to it. It also does a decent job of dampening sound.
Acoustic panels can be easily installed and they can be fixed behind hung up paintings or pictures if you decide to. This might actually be a nice option because acoustic panels aren’t the most decorative features so they aren’t exactly appealing to the eye. Either way, they’ll still do their job of absorbing sound.
While some hallways lack windows, some may have one or two small ones. If your hallway does have windows, then this tip will prove useful to you. A window is also an avenue for sound to travel, so it needs to be taken care of as well. There are a few ways to deal with this.
The first and probably the most common will be using soundproof curtains. Soundproof curtains look no different from the conventional curtains you’re used to. However, they are thicker and fully cover the window to prevent sound travelling in and out.
Curtains are nice; they make your wall even more aesthetically pleasing. Also, if you deem necessary, you can always pull the curtains to get some light. Some people may prefer curtains for these reasons.
There’s also the option of window inserts. They are more conspicuous compared to curtains. However, they do a good job of controlling sound. Window inserts may serve as a temporal sound control method for some people.
If loud noises from the surrounding area perhaps even close by keeps bothering you, quickly insert your window inserts. The effect will be instantaneous and you’ll be glad you had something to help. Hopefully, you have a perfect fit for your window around.
That’ll be really convenient.
The final option for you will be to completely replace your windows. A difficult choice, but sometimes getting completely new windows is the only choice you have.
Replace with a glass that completely blocks out sound. You can get a single or double pane window. However, you should know that the latter will do a better job and you’ll be pleased. But, be ready to shell out a bit more cash if you want to enjoy the benefits of a double-paned window.
If you’re lucky enough to find that the windows in your building are made with soundproof glass. Well, that means you have one less thing to worry about. They’ll prove really useful to you because usually, the window aids sound travel.
Soundproof Rooms connected to the Hallway
The hallway tends to be overlooked because people don’t spend much time in there. Still, it is part of the building and people will move around or even have a chit chat there from time to time.
A good way to limit sound travel to and from the hallway is to soundproof rooms leading to it.
The steps taken to soundproof the hallway can be used to soundproof the rooms themselves. Since the rooms may be larger in size, it might require more materials for soundproofing compared to working on a hallway. Work according to your budget and what you desire.
Rearrange Adjacent Rooms
This tip is specifically for people who feel the hallway is really noisy and disrupts the serenity of their rooms. If you need some more quiet in your room and want to block out sound coming in from the hallway, try rearranging the room or at least start from there.
For instance, if you have a desk and a chair very close to the door, that’s not going to help your troubles. Instead, you’ll hear sounds from the hallway easily. It will help if you arrange your cushion, chairs and desks to be at the further end of the room. Basically, make little changes that’ll limit the amount of sound that gets into your little sanctuary.
Is soundproofing a hallway worth the trouble?
Well, most people don’t pay much attention to the hallway. But, if you’ve spent a ton of time and even money trying to soundproof rooms in a building, then I don’t see why the hallway should be neglected. It’ll take some time and effort to get your hallway properly soundproof, but it’ll be worth it.
You may not necessarily need to completely block out the sound coming from the hallway, but a few changes will limit things to a very bearable minimum. That will work for a lot of people as well. After all, it is true that people don’t spend much time in the hallway especially in a place of business.
Summarily, while the hallway may not be the best converging point for people, it is wise to control and conserve noise that’ll be made in there and prevent disrupting others’ peace and quiet.