Car cabin noise has always been one of the main reasons for driver and passenger discomfort. In order to reduce noise and create a more comfortable driving experience.
Vehicle noise is a problem for several reasons. First, it can be extremely loud, making it difficult to hear other sounds and preventing people from enjoying peace and quiet.
Second, vehicle noise pollution can cause or contribute to health problems such as hearing loss, high blood pressure, and stress. Finally, vehicle noise creates an unpleasant environment that can make it difficult for people to concentrate or sleep.
There are several things that can be done to reduce vehicle noise. First, let’s understand the four kinds of noises that leak inside your car’s cabin. They include:
- Wind noise
- Road noise
- Engine noise
- Exhaust noise
- Suspension noise
Car cabin noise decibels (Quietest)
|Year||Make||Model||dB at 50 MPH|
|2018||Genesis||G80 3.3T Sport||67dB|
|2014||GMC||Sierra Denali 6.2L||67dB|
|2017||Ford||Raptor Super Cab||68.5dB|
Car cabin noise decibels (Loudest)
|Year||Make||Model||dB at 50 MPH|
|2017||BMW||i3 Range Extender||75dB|
|2017||Fiat||124 Spider Lusso||75dB|
|2017||Mazda||MX-5 RF Manual||75dB|
|2017||RAM||1500 Crew Cab Short Bed V8||74dB|
Dynamat is a material used to dampen noise and vibration. It is often used in vehicles to reduce road noise and vibrations from the engine.
It can also be used in homes to reduce noise from appliances, HVAC systems, or outside traffic. This sound deadener is available in sheets, rolls, or kits and can be cut to fit any area.
It is made of a thin, flexible, self-adhesive material that can be applied to the inside of a vehicle body.
Dynamat absorbs vibrational energy and converts it into heat, which dissipates quickly and does not build up over time.
Because it is a self-adhesive it can be used on floors, doors, trunks, and roofs. Installing Dynamat is not difficult, but it does take some time and patience.
Tools needed for installation:
- utility knife
- straight edge or ruler
- clean rags or towels
- soap and water (for cleaning surfaces)
- hairdryer (optional)
Start by cleaning. Use soap and water to remove any dirt, grease, or grime. Allow the area to dry completely.
If the area is very cold, you can use a hairdryer to warm up the surface before installation. This will make the Dynamat more pliable and easier to work with.
Use a utility knife and straight edge to cut the Dynamat to size. It is important to get a clean, straight cut so that the edges of the Dynamat will lay flat and not peel up.
Peel the backing off of the Dynamat and apply it to the surface. Start at one end and work your way across, pressing down as you go. Smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles.
Allow the Dynamat to cure for 24 hours before installing anything over it. This will give the adhesive time to set and ensure a strong bond.
2. Change Tires
All tire types produce noise. Because of their tread patterns, winter tires (especially ones with spikes) and off-road tires make a lot of noise.
Furthermore, the run-flat tires will make more noise because their sidewalls are stiffer.
Performance tires are much less noisy, and not silent because of their purpose – provides good grip and responsiveness.
Tires that are new, used, or have low rolling resistance tend to be the quietest.
Tires that are bigger or smaller tend to make more noise. A 265/ tire, for example, has a bigger contact patch than a 235/ tire. This is because more rubber touches the road, it will make more noise.
There is less space on the sidewalls of smaller tires, like the 40-series, to absorb noise. So, if your vehicle sounds loud, check their aspect ratio.
When a tire tread is more aggressive and symmetrical, it makes more noise. This is because the grooves let air flow through them. Some air enters the channel and becomes compressed between the car tire and the ground.
As the air goes out, it makes a sound that keeps repeating each single time air comes in. So more space between the tread blocks, the more air gets trapped. This makes the tires sound loud.
3. Sound Reducing Weather Seals
4. Inspect your Car Engine
Some of the noise you hear while inside your car may be coming from the engine. It is normal for an engine to produce a low sound when the car starts, but some may produce unusual noise that can be annoying.
The reason for the unpleasant sounds may be old and dirty oil in the engine or use of engine oil that does not suit your car. Old and dirty oil does not lubricate well compared to fresh oil, which makes the engine to be noisy.
When the moving parts in the engine are not lubricated and come into contact, they produce some sounds.
Ensure your car is using the right oil. Unsuitable oil that does not suit your car and is less or heavier than what car needs. Most engines get quieter when they use synthetic oil than when they use mineral oil.
If the oil is okay, check whether the engine parts are worn out since they tend to produce noise. If they are worn out, consider taking your car to an experienced mechanic to replace the worn-out parts.
5. Inspect the Exhaust and Suspension
Most cars are designed with stock exhausts that do not make noise. If your car is using a free flow muffler, it will produce more sound compared to the stock exhaust.
The exhaust system over time rust and may develop small holes, making them noisier. Repairing or replacing such exhausts will bring a big difference in the noise levels in your car.
Car’s suspension includes ball joints, suspension –link rods, shocker bolts, and steering ends. These parts can be the primary source of noise in your car. They need to be re-torqued after some time.
The bearings should be greased often to avoid friction, which later leads to wearing out, and finally, they start producing some noise. If you can do the work yourself, then consider taking your car to a mechanic to attend to the suspension parts.
6. Add a Partition
If you have a larger car, you can add a partition to separate the noise from the front and back seats. This will help to keep the noise level down in the cabin so that you and your passengers can enjoy a quieter ride.
Partitioning is a process of dividing the interior space of a car into separate compartments. Besides reducing noise, this process can be done for a number of reasons, such as to increase storage space, to improve safety or to make the car more comfortable.
Partitioning a car is not a difficult task, but it does require some planning and measuring in order to get the job done correctly.
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7. Use Soundproof Sprays
The soundproof spray is a liquid soundproofing material. They mainly used in parts you cannot reach in your car, for instance under the car. They are cheaper and easy to use and work effectively.
The sprays are heat resistant and should be applied in multiple layers for better results. They can be used to block tiny holes in your car, which may be an entrance of noise into your car.
8. Regular Car Maintenance
Like any other vehicle, a car needs regular maintenance. If your car does not get regular servicing, then it is likely to produce noise. All the moving parts need to be lubricated from time to time.
Inspect the exterior car body to check if there are any damages, especially after an accident. Take your car to a professional mechanic frequently to check whether there is something that is not working properly.
It is important to keep up with regular car maintenance in order to avoid larger, more expensive problems down the road. Here are some tips on how to maintain your car:
- Check your engine oil level regularly and change it when necessary.
- Have your tires rotated and inflated to the proper levels.
- Get your brakes checked regularly.
- Inspect your hoses and belts for wear and tear.
- Keep your cooling system clean and free of leaks.
- Change your cabin air filter regularly.
- Wash and wax your car regularly to protect the paint job.
- Take your car in for a tune-up as recommended by the manufacturer.
- Get your car’s emissions tested as required by law.
- Keep an eye on your car’s fluids and have them changed when necessary.
By following these tips, you can help keep your car running smoothly for many years to come.
A lot of budget cars have poorly designed parts that cause rattles. The biggest culprits are parcel trays as well as interior trims and dashboard fitments.
Eliminating all rattling noises is a must if you want a quieter car. First, start by identifying them and consulting a professional mechanic to help you fix the problem.
Joints also need to be lubricated regularly to eliminate squeaking and rattling.
Above are different ways on how to make your car quieter inside. The key is to ensure that all these ideas work simultaneously.
Meet Mike O’Connor, (a DIY enthusiast), living in Cincinnati, a city ranked as the noisiest in the USA.
As a work from home dad, I have a first hand experience of how noise can truly affect your well being.
Soundproofing isn’t something that should be taken as a hobby, it should be a skill that every homeowner should be equipped with.
Most of the work documented on this blog comes from purely first hand experience, and the products recommended work as indicated.