Does sound deadening work in cars?
If you’ve used high quality sound deadening products, you know the answer is “Yes, 1000 times yes”. There are two types of noise in a vehicle: structural and airborne. Properly treating both sources of noise is the key to getting the most out of your stereo system or enjoying a quiet ride to work. Anyone who’s tried to ignore a rattling trunk or door panel knows the vibrations when the bass hits are real and annoying. Fortunately, those rattles are also easy to get rid of with a little help from Second Skin’s Damplifier Pro!
We know that the people who find their way to this page on our website are not current Second Skin customers! You may be someone who has skipped sound deadening in previous builds or maybe you used mediocre products (that you thought were good) but weren’t impressed by the impact. That’s completely understandable, because if you’ve been on Amazon – all the products look the same! How is a reasonable person supposed to know the difference between two pieces of rubber with foil attached?
What is sound deadening?
In a vehicle, sound deadening specifically means to stop structural noise by damping vibrational energy. Stopping the metal from vibrating is absolutely key to any car audio sound deadening build with good sound quality or any daily driver without a loud cabin while driving on the highway. If you stop the vibrations, you’ll stop the noise. For more information on sound deadening check out our article on CLD sound deadening.
There are a handful of products you can use to stop this structural noise, but the most commonly used one is a product that uses a process called constrained layer damping (CLD). In this process, a viscoelastic material is sandwiched between two stiff materials that would vibrate if left on their own. The vibrations of the “constraint layers” is dissipated by the viscoelastic middle layer.
This is where the difference in sound deadening materials comes in. If the manufacturer uses cheap sound deadening material like peal and seal sound deadening, asphalt or a butyl that is not viscoelastic (high in cheaper “filler” material), you will not see a substantial reduction in NVH. If the manufacturer uses cheap, flimsy foil, you will not see a substantial reduction in NVH. You’ll do the same amount of work and get 10-40% of the noise reduction you’d get from using better materials.
Which Sound Deadening Material Should I Get?
We formulated our two leading sound deadeners to be the best possible solutions to stopping structural noise. Go with Damplifier Pro if you’d rather the peel and stick mats, or pick Spectrum if you’d rather apply your deadener with a brush or roller. Both are awesome products, and you can’t do wrong with either of them. For extremely situations, like an SPL build – you may even want to use both!
At the beginning of the article, we mentioned airborne noise, which is mostly engine, exhaust, tire, and road noise. When we are soundproofing a car, we recommend combining your sound deadener of choice with Luxury Liner Pro to also block these airborne sounds. When both products are used together, a loud vehicle will have noise reduced by 10-15 db. That’s a complete game-changer for your ride to work, and it means your stereo will sound just as loud at a way louder at a way lower absolute volume level.
Once you’ve experience the Second Skin difference, you never go back!