Whether you are a light-sleeper, have noisy neighbours who karaoke, or are the noisy neighbour (musicians who rock out at home, we’re talking about you!), acoustically-treating or soundproofinga home is popular amongst new and old homeowners.

Here are some soundproofing solutions you can get for your HDB:

Soundproof Doors

Air movement — whether in and out, and from windows doors, or vents — allow sound leakage. To ensure there are no air gaps, acoustic consultants Soundzipper recommends buying a draft block or door sweep.

“Though this can only muffle sounds and not a complete soundproof solution, it is an easy DIY method. Alternatively, you can drill a thick/sturdy sheet of rubber to the door (on one or both sides); it should be able to sweep on the floor and minimise air gaps,” says the team at Soundzipper.

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To make the door completely air-tight and more “soundproof”, Soundzipper recommends a drop seal for the space under the door. A drop seal releases a mechanism to seal the gap between door and floor; this occurs only when the door is closed, and features a material that will not scratch the surface of the floor. When the door is opened, air pressure is released again.

The type of doors matter, too. Different types of doors have different acoustic properties. “It is not recommended to go ahead with the previous two steps if the door is lightweight or hollow. If you want to convert your room into a studio or home theatre, it would probably require an acoustic door,” says the Soundzipper team.

Soundproof Ceilings and Floors

Noise and vibrations from chairs being dragged, items being dropped and so on will travel easily through the concrete slab that is your ceiling and your upstairs neighbour’s floor.

So if the height of your ceiling permits, you could install a plasterboard drop ceiling or a false ceiling, then fill the gap between it and the slab with a material such as Rockwool to reduce noise transmission.

You might also want to consider using a gypsum board ceiling material of a higher grade such as the Soundshield from Knauf — this high-density material helps absorb sounds.

Ikea also suggests opting for a high pile rug like the Adum rug; the dense, thick pile helps to dampen sound to help create a peaceful environment.

Soundproof Windows

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Changing the windows to laminated windows or acoustic windows will greatly increase the soundproofing. The latter is expensive, says Soundzipper, but specially designed with vacuum in between non-parallel sheets of glass. You can also check out this window, which cuts noise even when it is open.

Soundproofing your bedroom windows will be costly but worth it. Standard windows have a single pane of glass, so noise and light can pass through it. You need to install double-glazed windows (i.e with two panes of glass), which effectively trap sound in the vacuum or empty space between the two panes.

Top-quality double-glazed windows also have a good sealant all around the glass and rubber flanges edging the window frames. This ensure there are absolutely no gaps anywhere, and hence noise cannot filter through.

A low-cost, although less effective, way to soundproof windows is to hang heavy, full drapes with a velvety texture. The curtains should hang from ceiling to floor and be lined to fall well. The thick, velvety fabric traps and deadens noise in the multiple folds.

Soundproof Walls

Plasterboard walls or partitions are ineffective for soundproofing. An inner plasterboard wall that features a cavity in between layers, is a better option.

This is so the sound vibrations transmitting through the other wall is reduced. The heavier and denser the wall, the better it will be at soundproofing; a masonry wall is more effective than a plasterboard.

An even better option to acoustically treat your walls is a cavity with insulation. Placing insulation such as rockwool and fibreglass into he cavity will mitigate this effect and provide more sound and heat insulation. Yup, this keeps the home cool, too!

Have time on your hands, or prefer a cheaper alternative? With picture frames and thick wadding, you can block noise from outside (like traffic) and inside (like a game or movie room)