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Soundproof Blankets for Doors

How Effective are Soundproof Blankets for Doors?

How Effective are Soundproof Blankets for Doors?

If you have ever tried to hang a blanket over a door in hopes of blocking sound from entering the room, you’ve realized that what seems like a good solution doesn’t work nearly as well as you’d hoped. But how can this be? There are so many articles on the internet saying to soundproof a door with blankets! It must work! Right?!

 

Let’s start with some basic physics. There are two absolutely NECESSARY components to block sound through a doorway:

- The barrier needs to be dense. The more mass, the more noise is blocked. That’s why concrete or bricks block more noise than paper.

- The seal needs to be airtight. Sound travels really easily through any air gaps, so any open spaces will allow sound to leak around your barrier.

 

Once you’ve got your head wrapped around those two basic facts, you start to see the challenges of soundproofing a door with a blanket. If you’re grabbing the wooly blanket off the couch and nailing it to the door, you’re not going to see any results. It’s not dense enough to block any noise. If you use a denser, heavier blanket and create close to an airtight seal – you’ll see some results. And then if you use proper soundproofing strategies, you’ll see significant results. Keep reading to learn your options for each so you can decide what solution is right for you.

If you have ever tried to hang a blanket over a door in hopes of blocking sound from entering the room, you’ve realized that what seems like a good solution doesn’t work nearly as well as you’d hoped. But how can this be? There are so many articles on the internet saying to soundproof a door with blankets! It must work! Right?!

Let’s start with some basic physics. There are two absolutely NECESSARY components to block sound through a doorway:

- The barrier needs to be dense. The more mass, the more noise is blocked. That’s why concrete or bricks block more noise than paper.

- The seal needs to be airtight. Sound travels really easily through any air gaps, so any open spaces will allow sound to leak around your barrier.

Once you’ve got your head wrapped around those two basic facts, you start to see the challenges of soundproofing a door with a blanket. If you’re grabbing the wooly blanket off the couch and nailing it to the door, you’re not going to see any results. It’s not dense enough to block any noise. If you use a denser, heavier blanket and create close to an airtight seal – you’ll see some results. And then if you use proper soundproofing strategies, you’ll see significant results. Keep reading to learn your options for each so you can decide what solution is right for you.

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Popular Products for Door Soundproofing


Sound Lock™ Door Seal Kits
Quiet Quilt™ Soundproof Blanket
SoundLock™ Soundproof Door

What an Effective Soundproof Door Does

In order to soundproof your door with a blanket or any other solution, you need to first understand what a soundproof door does well. It starts with the first basic principle of all soundproofing jobs: eliminate air gaps. No matter how dense or soundproof your door is, if there are air gaps on any of its sides, noise will “leak” through those openings. As whatever noise is annoying you (TVs, people talking, music playing) travels through the air (ie airborne noise), it behaves a lot like water - it finds a weak point and leaks through.

You can take a bite out of airborne noise by creating an airtight seal around the door itself. We go deeper on solutions to seal the door in our door soundproofing guide. We’ll come back to it later in this article too.

The second key for soundproof doors is to have a lot of mass. The denser and thicker the soundproof door is the better, as you want a very heavy barrier between you and unwanted noise. Even if your door is sealed very tight, if it is a hollow-core door, sound is going to easily transmit through the door panel itself.

Hollow doors are very common in residential homes, especially for interior doors. They are economical and lightweight, but they are not effective for soundproofing. Dense, solid-core doors are what you need for blocking sound, especially if you are trying to soundproof an exterior door or soundproof french doors.

soundproof door cover

How to Use Soundproof Blankets on a Door

We generally only recommend a soundproof blanket for a door in two scenarios:

      • The door is a hollow-core door that you do not want to replace with a solid-core door
      • The door does not need to be used regularly while the barrier blanket is up

If that does not describe you, you may just want to jump to the next section. Or if you just want to learn stuff – keep plowing on ahead!

Ok, so you’re set on using soundproof blankets on your door. The first thing you need to do is select a type of blanket that’s actually rated to block sound. You’re looking for something called an STC rating, which means the product has been professionally tested to block sound. If it’s not rated for STC, it’s not a product that was designed for soundproofing. If you have a hollow-core door, the STC rating is especially important because your current door is a poor barrier.

The key is for the blanket to be as thick and heavy as possible, and seal it at the edges. The only blankets we ever recommend are our Quiet Quilt soundproof barrier blankets (indoor/outdoor) or our Quiet Quilt 2-Sided Blanket (indoor only). These blankets are 2” thick with a density of 1.5 lb/sq ft. Both of these blankets come standard with 1 lb mass loaded vinyl and a sewn on absorptive quilt face. We can upgrade to 2 lb MLV if you request it. This is similar to picking out the right soundproof curtain.

Both versions of the Quiet Quilt blankets are rated for both STC (sound blocking) and NRC (sound absorption). They are durable, long-lasting, and come in several colors depending on the look you want. When installing the blankets, always face the absorptive face towards the door and ensure the blanket is as well sealed as possible around the doorway for the best performance. The blankets come with Velcro on the two sides and grommets, making it easy to hang them on hooks or seal them to each other.

Benefits of using a Soundproof Door Blanket Downside of Using Soundproof Blankets on a Door
  • Professional STC and NRC ratings
  • Install over a hollow core door without upgrading it
  • Choose between 4 colors
  • Easy to install
  • Removable
  • Blocks doorway while in use
  • Less effective than permanent solutions
soundproof curtains for doors

Alternative to Soundproof Blankets for Doors

If you are considering using a soundproof blanket, we always want to make sure you are at least aware of other options. As we stated earlier, a huge factor in how soundproof the door is the door itself. The best thing you can do is to soundproof a hollow core door by replacing it with a solid-core one. If you have a solid-core door, you have a proper base for professional soundproofing treatments.

  1. Use a Sound Lock Door Seal Kit. This solution is the best way to create an airtight seal around the door. The door seal kit comes with 3 perimeter seals for the jamb and then a bottom seal which drops when the door is closed. The perimeter seals are adjustable, because no door is perfectly square. And then the bottom seal’s dropping mechanism allows the door to open and close easily while sealing below the door. The kit will add up to 20 STC points over a standard solid-core door. For more information on the cost of this, check out our article on the cost of soundproofing a door.

  2. Use gasket seal tape. The adjustable jamb seals don’t fit around the perimeter of all doors – sometimes you have oddities like an arched top or an unusual handle. In those cases, we recommend our Sound Lock gasket seal tape around the entire perimeter of your door (two layers side-by-side if possible). The seal tape is the next best way to create an airtight seal when the door is closed. If you combine this with the Sound Lock bottom seal, you’ll get almost as good of results as you will with the adjustable kit.

We also have many customers who are looking for a true soundproof door. These tend to be commercial buildings who need serious sound reduction (office, military, schools) or for recording studio soundproofing. For scenarios like this, we recommend our STC 56 Sound Lock Soundproof Door. It’s a beautiful door that is the best performing interior wood door on the market.

While there’s nothing wrong with a homemade, half-baked soundproofing solution, we find it’s helpful to understand the principles behind WHY something works to give yourself the best chance at success. Hopefully this article helped you understand a bit better why if you’re attempting to block out noise with a blanket you found around the house or in the back of your moving truck, the results are modest or non-existent. As always, please reach out to us at Second Skin Audio if you’d like help coming up with a custom soundproofing solution

Have questions about your project?

Call us at 1.800.679.8511