January 23, 2023

The Best Ways to Soundproof Your Hardwood Floors

Young woman walking in the house on the warm floor. Gently walked the wooden panels.

Hardwood floors are timeless and elegant additions to any home. In 2022, they were one of the top flooring choices across the US due to their durability, appearance, and low maintenance. Despite their notable benefits to homes, hardwood floors aren’t soundproof. Although they can be less noisy than floating floors, they’re louder than tiles and carpeted flooring. But fret not, as dealing with this disadvantage isn’t as challenging as it looks. Get to know the best ways to soundproof your hardwood floors.

Flooring Noise Categories

Different kinds of noises can affect how you can soundproof your hardwood floors. Without soundproofed hardwood floors, music, TV, and other noises can carry down to the floor below and drift through the ceilings to the rooms above. There are two flooring noise categories remodelers need to know about before soundproofing their wooden floors.

Impact Noise

Impact noises are the ones caused by objects falling, feet stomping, and other noises that come in contact with your hardwood floor. Hardwood floorboards have a dense composition, making them durable against wear and tear. But this composition also creates loud, annoying sounds when something hard or heavy hits them.

Impact flooring noises often come from homeowners with pets inside the house or households with young children who tend to throw stuff around. They’re also a common problem in apartment buildings. Despite that, these types of noises are easy to soundproof.

Airborne Noise

Airborne flooring noises are the sounds that travel across the room or house. Some of its common causes are playing music on players and radios with heavier bass, loud pets, and TV noise. Unlike impact noises, airborne sounds travel further and echo throughout the place.

When you have hardwood floors without soundproofing, airborne noises travel faster. Adding more furniture in the room can help absorb the noise, but it will still seep through the other areas. In general, this flooring noise category is harder to soundproof.

Adding Insulation Between Floors

One of the best ways to block sounds is to separate the surfaces. You can make this happen by installing any continuous material between hardwood floors. These materials can work as an acoustic bridge that moves vibrations from one place to the next effortlessly.

Making structural separations of hardwood surfaces is also a costly solution. In most cases, putting them in home recording studios or high-end home theaters is the best option. Insulating between floors means placing a dense sound barrier in the open joist spaces. This becomes an effective way to slow noise transmission.

The process starts by removing the ceiling drywall and filling the space with fiberglass or rock wool. Because of the complexity of its installation, hiring a professional hardwood flooring service is essential.

Installing Underlayment Under the Hardwood Floor

Installing underlayment before laying out your hardwood planks is one of the first steps in soundproofing your floors. Putting them when you have new floors is easier, and unless your floorboards are quick to install and reinstall, underlayment is better to add during renovations.

An underlayment cushions your hardwood flooring while it rests on a soft surface instead of concrete or plywood. They come in different materials, but foam and cork are the most common. Here are some materials you can choose as your underlayment.

  • Polyethylene foam
  • Acoustic foam
  • Felt
  • Plywood
  • Cement board

Hardwood flooring installers lay these textiles before the planks, helping the floors suppress any impact and airborne noises.

Carpets and Rugs

Insulation and underlayment are ideal but expensive soundproofing methods. Not all homeowners and remodelers can afford them, especially for homes with hardwood flooring. While they soundproof the area better, you can still protect your home from the noise with affordable options.

Carpets and pads are some of the most effective ways to reduce the noise on your hardwood floors. Thicker carpets and pads absorb more noise and dissipate it before it enters the structure. While carpets, pads, and rugs are inexpensive and helpful options, not many people like to use them.

Hardwood floors are beautiful to look at, especially if they’re clean and glossy. Soundproofing them with carpets and rugs will cover the floorboards and their appealing wooden design. But you can remedy this concern by placing them in sections where noise is prevalent.

Adding fabric in other parts of the house, like wall decor, tapestries, and wall panels can help absorb unwanted airborne noises. Carpets can also protect your hardwood floors from sun damage if you put them in areas often exposed to sunlight.

Soundproofing Your Hardwood Floors the Best Way

Creating a peaceful and relaxing place in the comforts of your home is a major trend in 2023. To achieve this quiet room or area, dealing with noises is essential. While hardwood floors offer a fresh, calming look to your home, they’re not good at keeping out sounds. Many ideal methods for soundproofing hardwood floors are expensive, but carpets and rugs work well, despite covering sections of your beautiful wooden flooring.

Find expert hardwood flooring services in Austin at Kelly Hardwood Floors today!