Soundproofing a floor seems like one of the easiest things a person can do. Unlike the walls or ceiling, there is no permanent attachment needed to soundproof most floors in a way that is considered good enough. All that needs to be added is some material on the ground, and everything else works out from there.
While the options are plentiful, finding quality carpet and flooring materials to help with soundproofing is another step altogether. Some people struggle to find precisely what they need, and this can lead to quite a bit of trial and error.
Reviews online can tell part of the story, but people are always looking for different things out of their flooring to make it all work. Knowing what to look for and the materials out there that make the most sense is the best way to go.
Types of Floor Soundproofing Materials
Every person has a different situation, but understanding some of the main aspects of soundproofing goes along way. A lot of people starting out might not know exactly what direction to go in, but it just takes a little bit of basic knowledge to start getting a better idea.
A lot of soundproofing comes down to adding mass. The thicker a flooring material is, the better it will be at absorbing soundwaves and soundproofing an area in general. If possible, thicker is always going to be the best way to go.
Density also matters to a certain degree, so pay close attention to reviews online to figure out what material has that as well. Generally speaking, thickness and density go together.
Impact Insulation Class
There is a lot of impact noise that goes with the flooring, so it is important to understand how the material is rated with Impact Insulation Class.
Also known as ITC, this is a huge deal when looking at hardwood flooring. A higher number means it is better at soundproofing. (source)
Sound Transmission Class
This rating is used for a variety of products to show just how good it is at providing soundproofing effectiveness. If a number is high, it does a great job of controlling and even eliminating sound.
Materials For Soundproofing Flooring
Flooring options are plentiful with any type of home or business. There has to be a balance between not only soundproofing but also looking good. Most people try to find the perfect balance that works for them.
1. Mass loaded vinyl
As far as overall soundproofing is concerned, mass loaded vinyl is one of the best products out there. It is a very thin piece of material, but its density makes up for it. It does a great job of overall sound absorption, and most people use it underneath carpets on the floor.
Mass loaded vinyl is used for many different products. All it takes is a little bit of effort to cut things precisely to fit, and everything else falls in the place. There are even ways to add different layers of a person really wants to. (source)
2. Sound deadening floor insulation
The tricky part about sound deadening floor insulation is that it goes underneath the flooring instead of on top. Think of it the same way as soundproofing a wall. It is usually a very dense material, so sound waves have a hard time echoing when in use.
The good news is that it is out of sight, so a person does not have to change up how things look in a home or office. Some people ultimately want to make sure that they keep a specific look, so this is definitely an option worth looking at if that’s the case.
3. Soundproof carpet underlay
There are a lot of possibilities with soundproof carpet underlay, so pay close attention to see what might work best. It can sometimes be challenging to find the best of the best, but they all help to reduce noise in a little.
Carpet does a pretty fine job by itself at helping to control sound, but most people want something more than that. That is why there are people who, generally speaking, turn to an underlay that they will be able to use for an extended period of time. They are protected well enough that it should not really make too much of a difference.
4. Acoustic floor tiles
Acoustic floor tiles help a little bit with reducing not only echoes but all sounds coming from the floor at times. Some people like how these look, so they are willing to overlook how they might not be the absolute best for sound absorption. They still do a pretty steady job, just not at the same level as others.
What people seem to like best is that they can still get the look they want while having sound controlled a bit more.
Best Products to Soundproof a Floor
Whether it be carpet or flooring, there are many different situations where certain materials work better than others. This is a look at the best product out there right now, and what they work best for.
1. Soundsulate mass loaded vinyl
This might be the most effective soundproofing material on the market right now for an affordable price. Mass loaded vinyl is very versatile, and this is some of the best products a person can buy.
With each roll from the company, a person gets mass loaded vinyl that is 4 feet wide, 50 feet long, and 1/2 inch thick. The weight breaks down to one square foot is about half a pound, meaning that it is very lightweight for any type of floor.
Massive vinyl does more than just show off is effectiveness whenever a person goes through the installation process. It is very easy to cut everything the size, making it a dream for people who are tackling things themselves. It should be noted that this material is fairly expensive, so while mistakes are possible, minimizing them will usually be best.
Try to use as much as scraps as possible after cutting everything to size. Not everything is going to match up perfectly, but most people can maximize a roll of mass loaded vinyl reasonably easily. Remember, one roll should be good enough for a standard room. Buy as much material as necessary, and work from there.
2. Dynamat car soundproof mat
People think of flooring as mostly indoors, either at home or the office. The flooring inside a car needs a particular type of material so that everything stays as quiet as possible. There are a lot of noises a person can hear in a car, and older models can really become a massive hassle as time goes on.
Adding just one sheet of Dyanmat can make a huge difference. It is going to be a little thicker than the usual underlay, but people still find a way to make it worthwhile. The good thing about this material is that it actually works just fine for other projects as well. I can squeeze into smaller gaps that may need attention, and the fact that it does a great job with heat helps as well.
There are a lot of companies out there trying to offer the same thing, but Dynamat is the leader in this industry. Some people invest in a lot of this material to help in different areas. Reducing noise pollution by ten or more decibels is undoubtedly nothing to gloss over.
3. Stalwart Foam Mat Floor Tiles
If these look familiar, they are almost always found in places like gyms. They have a lot of uses, and they are trusted by a lot of people who are trying to soundproof flooring quickly and without spending much money. They might not look as good as some of the other options, but people love all the different options out there.
Stalwart might be the best company when it comes to offering these floor tiles. Not only are they easy to put together, but they easily go over any type of flooring that already exists. Some people will put it down for special occasions, and remove them later on.
Most people put these tiles over hard floors, but they can also sit over carpet if a person wants. They are dense enough to do a very good job with soundproofing, and the fact that they help with weights in a gym should tell a person all they need to know.
Anyone who is heavily into any type of sport should consider using this as a way to soundproof the floor. It can always be moved somewhere else if a person ultimately does not like the location. Do not be afraid to take a few chances with something inexpensive and easy to move around.
4. Roberts quiet cushion acoustic underlay material
An acoustic underlay material needs to have at least somewhat of an impact on impact noise. Some products just do not do as much as they should, but Roberts has a very trusted option for people to consider.
Not only does it help with sound waves, but it protects against moisture as well. Each roll of this material is about 100 square feet, and that will work for most rooms. Getting it to lay flat and work exactly as it should is a little bit of a hassle for people who are not used to working with this material. The good news is that once it is figured out, it should last a very long time.
Use this type of underlay in those more difficult rooms that need special attention. It works specifically well in bathrooms and kitchens because those are very prone to building up moisture in some way.
Some materials will not be able to hold up all that well in those situations. The same goes for people who have a basement that floods a little easy. If the floor needs some soundproof help, this material might help in other ways as well.
5. Cleverbrand neoprene carpet roll
This might seem like a pretty standard carpet roll for the most part, but the neoprene used by Cleverbrand makes this something worth looking into a bit more. Some people might not exactly know how neoprene works as a soundproofing material, but it is very relatable to EVA foam and other options like that.
The sponginess of this material has a great impact on absorbing any type of noise. Some people will put it directly under floors, and since it is thin enough, it will not make that much of a difference.
Neoprene is a very dense material, and most people think of it as a way to keep heat inside and moisture out. It does a similar thing to sound waves, which certainly helps people looking for some type of answer.
A neoprene carpet roll is very similar to a mass loaded vinyl roll in a lot of ways. The good news is that neoprene can sometimes be just a little bit cheaper as well. Do not be afraid to try something new, even if it might seem like it will not be that effective.
Enough people have been using neoprene these days that it seems to really be making a difference. It is one of those true challengers to mass loaded vinyl for those who are paying close attention to a budget.
Making a Final Decision
Individual needs are always changing when it comes to handling the floor. Carpet by itself is always going to make somewhat of an impact, but most people are looking for more than just minimal improvements. For a small investment, some materials work very well at helping people hear a little bit better inside.
If possible, try to find a way to test out a few of these products at home or in stores. Some companies also offer ways to hear from themselves the difference that their product can make. Each individual will know exactly how much they need their room to be soundproofed.