Bathrooms are not the first rooms you think of soundproofing. The need arises when you realize that noise from within distracts people in other rooms. It’s more embarrassing when the bathroom is adjacent to the dining room or living room.
Sometimes, you can postpone your bathroom use until everyone leaves the living and dining area. However, you can have a less stressful life if you soundproof your bathroom. You can employ several soundproofing methods of doing your business silently
There are several steps you should take to soundproof your bathroom and toilet. It may take you several hours or days.
Also, you can choose affordable methods or costly methods. Ensure all the methods you use are effective. Let me take you through the effective methods you may consider to soundproof a bathroom.
1. Use Bathroom Mats and Rugs
Bathroom floors are durable, cost-effective, and waterproof. They are constructed of ceramic, porcelain, concrete, natural stone, vinyl, cork flooring, etc. Most of these materials produce loud noise on impact. Thus, they distract people outside the bathroom.
However, it would be best only to place the rug on a dry floor to enhance the non-slip ability. The carpet should be soft and warm to soothe your feet after using the bathroom.
Get the fluffiest and thickest mat or rug that you can get. Also, it should be large enough to cover a large space. Besides other bathroom benefits, the rug will help absorb some bathroom noise.
The advantages of rugs and mats are that they are affordable, convenient, and easy to install, and save time. You can also select colors and designs that match your bathroom decor, thus, maintaining beauty in your bathroom.
2. Build a Floating Floor
There are limited options for dealing with noisy bathroom floors. However, you may consider replacing the floor with a less noisy one. It will cost you a larger budget than installing mats and rugs. However, the results are satisfying.
Floating floors are easy to install: You don’t need to glue or nail the floor to the subfloor. The floor materials use a puzzle system to interlock.
The floating floor adds mass to the bathroom floor. Also, most materials are soundproof – such as vinyl and hardwood. The flooring is useful when you need silence in the room beneath the bathroom.
Apply other methods if you want to stop floor-based noise transfer to rooms on the same floor as the bathroom.
3. Change the Floor Material
The last option is to change the floor material. Wood corking, rubber, vinyl tiles, and wood-plastic composite are some materials you can use to soundproof the bathroom floor. You can get the materials at a local store or source them online.
Most of the flooring ideas need some handy work. Thus, you should source an expert and ensure they fix the floor perfectly. Besides making the floor soundproof, they should also maintain waterproof properties. It ensures your bathroom is mold and mildew free to prevent bad odors.
4. Weatherstrip the Door
There’s a high possibility there’s a gap between the door frame and the door panel. You can seal the gap with weather-stripping tape. However, not all weatherstrip tapes are suitable for bathroom use. Get Fowong weatherstripping rubber since it has the best material for bathroom use. You can use the same tape to seal bathroom windows.
Clean your door frame before installing the weatherstrip rubber tape. Then, measure the door to know the length you need to seal. vCut 45 degrees at the corners to prevent overlapping the rubber strip. You can cut a strip one or two inches longer than the door measurements.
You’ll cut the extra length during installation. The trick helps in sealing the door properly without leaving any gaps accidentally. After installing the weatherstrip, you should check if you have sealed the door properly. Sound finds the tiniest gaps and takes maximum advantage to sneak through. Thus, it would be best if you didn’t ignore any gap between the door panel and the frame.
You can do a light test to check for any gaps in the bathroom. Switch on the lights across the room and lock yourself in the bathroom. Switch off the bathroom light and check if any light passes through. Seal off any space that leaks light into the toilet.
5. Sound Blocking Door Sweep
Constructors and engineers ensure that all interior doors open and close smoothly. Thus, they leave a gap below the door. That gap is the main culprit that lets noise sneak into other rooms. Also, the gap is too wide for a weatherstripping tape to cover. It needs a better solution that won’t interfere with the free movement of the door.
There are plenty of draft stoppers in the market. But the materials won’t necessarily fit the bathroom environment. Revitalizaire’s soundproof door pad offers you the service you need to block the gap. This soundproof door pad is triple-layer polyester wool, iron powder, EPDM rubber, and a waterproof PVC coating. It’s easy to install and large enough to fit a gap of up to 2.5 inches wide.
6. Caulk around the Frame
One of the cheapest and easiest ways to soundproof a bathroom door is sealing the cracks and gaps. Check the molding and the frame for the openings. Take a regular sealant or acoustic caulk to seal the gap. In some cases, you may consider filling the gap between the door panel with some soundproof foam or fiberglass. Then seal all the unnecessary cracks with acoustic caulk.
7. Hang Soundproof Blanket
If you don’t mind so much about the aesthetics of your bathroom, you can use soundproof blankets behind the door. Audimute Soundproof Blanket will absorb noise within the toilet. Its outer material is made of polyester blend and woven cotton.
It’s filled with 100% recycled cotton. It has nine grommets across its 80 inches width, which you use to hang the blanket. Use hooks to hand the blanket so it’s easy to install and remove. Get a neutral-colored blanket so it doesn’t interfere with bathroom decor.
8. Replace the Door
You can opt for the most expensive and reliable method to soundproof your bathroom door, replacing the door. If your bathroom door is hollow, you can consider replacing it with a solid door.
Hollow doors are affordable. However, they are also thin and light. The space between the panels allows sound to vibrate, transferring noise to other rooms. You can eliminate this problem by installing a new solid door.
After installing the solid door, you’ll need to seal the gap between the frames with weatherstripping tape. Also, you should add a draft-stopper at the bottom to seal the gap between the door and the floor.
9. Use a Joint Compound to Seal the Walls
Bathroom walls are subject to frequent water and moisture. It makes the walls more vulnerable to cracks than walls in other rooms. Thus, you need to do regular checks and repairs on any cracks that develop.
Frequent checkups ensure that wall cracks do not develop into massive cracks before you notice. Thus, you can use US Gypsum Joint Compound to seal off the cracks. Since it takes a long time to dry, you can check after 24 hours if it needs another layer.
Once you are satisfied with the sealing, you can sand the excess out until it’s smooth. Then, finish the repairs with paint. Alternatively, you can cover the area with wallpaper.
10. Thicken your Bathroom Walls
Adding thickness to your bathroom walls is sure to block noise transfer to other rooms. Thus, adding a layer of drywall is a sure way to dampen the noise.
You can sandwich the walls with Noise Grabber MLV Barrier. The product is high quality with high sound ratings. If you don’t have a budget to add another layer of drywall, this MLV barrier can dampen the noise within the bathroom.
If you add another layer on top of the MLV barrier, you should use Green Glue RGG400200 sealant to seal the gaps between the drywall boards. Remember to choose waterproof drywall for your bathroom.
11. Towels to Absorb Sound
You may be low on budget but need to dampen the noise from your bathroom. You can apply a cost-effective method to reduce the mouse. Arrange your towels strategically on the shelves. The more the towels, the more the sound dampening effect.
You can make this method effective by having several shelves across the walls. You can also hang some towels on walls that don’t have shelves. The soft material will absorb some noise, reducing the noise that escapes through the walls.
12. Install Soft-Closing Toilet Seats
Most toilets have noisy toilet seats. It’s annoying when you have a large family, and the lid crushes against the bathroom. In the construction phase, you can opt for quiet toilet seats. But when the toilet already exists, you don’t need to install a new toilet seat or lid.
You can use DMI Raised Toilet Seat cushion to ensure the toilet cover closes silently. The cushion will also help relieve pressure on your bums. You can also try an unorthodox method like using Vivesole Shoe blister pads. They are designed to protect sore spots on your feet. The pads are self-adhesive; hence, they are easy to use. You can use the blister pads on your toilet seats to prevent the annoying crushing of the toilet lid against the seat.
13. Soundproof Pipes and Plumbing
Bathroom and toilet pipes may make rattling noise when in use. You can tighten the clamps and mount clamps that hold pipes in place. If you can access the pipes, you should use sound-absorbing materials to wrap the pipes. Alternatively, you can fill the pipe materials.
Pipe wrapping is easy. You should use materials like polyurethane to wrap your PVC, copper, cast iron, etc. Copper pipes tend to expand due to heat. You can’t tighten them when they expand as it may damage the pipes when the heat subsides. Thus, you insulate them to prevent heating up when temperatures go up.
14. Change the Plumbing Lines
If the plumbing lines are old and damaged, replacing them with new ones is wise. You’ll need to hire a plumber to do the work. When replacing, buy soundproof materials like plastics, PVC, and others. If not, you can soundproof the lines during installation.
15. Reduce the noise of toilet Flush
Toilet flush usually announces you are done with your toilet business. It is embarrassing. You can reduce the shame when you apply methods that reduce the noise.
First, you can replace your toilet with a low-flow one. The method is expensive compared to other options. However, it’s very effective as these toilets have low flushing noise. Alternatively, you can use adhesive to cover gaps between the top of the toilet and the tank. Also, ensure the toilet is far from the door
When you soundproof all parts of your bathroom, you’ll have a more peaceful time conducting your business.
Remember to use the right tools and materials when soundproofing. The recommendations in this article are cheap and effective. You can get them at a local store or order them online. Remember to check the reliability of the seller and the after-sale services that they offer.
If you are building a new house, remember to integrate steps to soundproofing a bathroom. It’s cheaper and more effective than soundproofing during renovations. Use durable materials that don’t need replacement after a short time. Also, remember to weatherstrip the door edges and fill all the gaps and holes in the door.
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.