Are you tired of unwanted noise seeping through your internal bifold doors? We’ve all been there, and it can be quite a nuisance. Due to their design, bifold doors will “leak” more noise than traditional doors. In this guide, we shall explore different ways to soundproof internal bifold doors.
Do bifold doors reduce noise?
Bifold doors are effective in isolating sound. The highest sound insulation is offered by laminated glass. Sound waves are decreased using a special layer between the laminated glass sheets. Another important factor is the glazing’s thickness.
Solid-core exterior or interior doors effectively block noise because of their solid construction. Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF), which is more affordable than expensive hardwood, is one of the many products manufacturers offer. Use a high-quality silicone lubricant. Always keep a cloth nearby, and don’t go overboard. The door panels should be moved back and forth until unhindered and silent.
The best method to reduce sound is to use a thicker laminate unit. Multiple glass thicknesses and an acoustic interior laminate are used in the construction. Bifold doors with sound-absorbing glass absorb noise inside the glass while reflecting sound.
Soundproofing Internal Bifold Doors
1. Seal Gaps
Sealing gaps around your bifold doors is a fundamental step in effective soundproofing. Sound waves can easily penetrate these gaps, so addressing them is crucial.
Start by inspecting your doors for any visible gaps. These may occur along the edges, between panels, or at the bottom where the door meets the floor. Here’s how you can tackle this:
Examine your doors thoroughly to identify all the gaps. You might want to do this during the day to check for any incoming light or at night to see if any light escapes from the inside.
For smaller gaps, weatherstrip tape can work wonders. This adhesive-backed tape can be easily applied along the edges of the door to create an airtight seal. It’s a simple yet effective solution.
If you have bigger gaps, consider using caulk. It’s a durable sealant that can be applied to any gaps that weatherstrip tape can’t handle. Ensure the caulk is dry before moving on.
2. Install a Door Sweep
A door sweep is a simple yet effective solution to reduce noise infiltration through the gap at the bottom of your bifold door. By sealing this gap, you can significantly enhance your soundproofing efforts.
A door sweep is a flexible, usually weather-resistant strip that attaches to the bottom of your door. It creates a seal when the door is closed, preventing drafts and sound from traveling freely.
Start by measuring the width of your door to ensure you get a door sweep that fits perfectly. You may need to cut it to the correct size.
Open your door and position the sweep to extend just beyond the door’s edge. Ensure it’s centered for even coverage.
Secure the door sweep in place using the provided screws or adhesive. Make sure it’s snug against the door.
After installing the door sweep, close the door and test the seal. Run your hand along the bottom to ensure no gaps or openings. If done correctly, you should feel a noticeable difference.
3. Apply Weatherstrip Tape
Weatherstrip tape is a versatile and cost-effective solution for closing gaps around your bifold doors, ensuring a better seal and improved soundproofing. This step is particularly useful for sealing the gaps on the bifold door edges- especially where the door meets the frame.
Weatherstrip tape is a self-adhesive, flexible, rubber or foam strip. It’s designed to seal gaps and prevent air and sound from passing through.
Before applying weatherstrip tape, ensure the surface around your bifold doors is clean and free from dust or debris. This will help the tape adhere better.
Measure the length of tape needed for each edge. Cut the tape to the appropriate length, leaving some excess for adjustments.
Peel off the backing of the weatherstrip tape to expose the adhesive side. Carefully stick it along the edges and gaps of your doors. Press firmly to ensure a good bond.
Close the doors to check the seal. Run your hand along the edges to feel for any gaps or inconsistencies. Adjust the tape as necessary.
Using weatherstrip tape, you can close those smaller gaps and prevent sound leakage, creating a quieter living space.
4. Draft Stopper
A draft stopper is a practical and versatile solution for soundproofing your internal bifold doors. Not only does it block drafts, but it also reduces noise transmission, making it an excellent addition to your soundproofing toolkit.
Draft stoppers, door snakes or draft blockers are typically fabric or foam-filled tubes that you place at the bottom of your doors. They effectively block drafts and, as a result, help in soundproofing.
Please measure the width of your bi-fold door and cut the draft stopper to match its length.
Place the draft stopper on the side of the door where the noise source is coming from, if applicable.
Some draft stoppers come with straps or fasteners to keep them in place. Ensure it’s securely fastened to the door. Close the door and check if the draft stopper effectively blocks gaps and reduces sound transmission.
Draft stoppers are efficient in reducing noise and serve as a barrier against drafts and temperature fluctuations, improving energy efficiency.
5. Soundproof Blankets
Soundproof blankets, also known as acoustic blankets or moving blankets, are a versatile solution to reduce noise from your bifold doors. These thick, heavy blankets effectively absorb sound and are portable and easy to install.
Soundproof blankets are designed with multiple layers of dense materials that can absorb and block sound waves. Their mass and thickness make them effective in reducing noise transmission.
Choose a soundproof blanket that matches the size of your bifold doors. You can find these blankets in various sizes and thickness levels. Drape the blanket over the door, ensuring it covers it completely. You can use hooks, grommets, or adhesive strips to secure the blanket.
Close the doors and assess the effectiveness of the blanket in reducing noise. You should notice a significant difference in sound levels.
Soundproof blankets offer a flexible solution, allowing you to remove them when not needed and use them for various soundproofing purposes in your home.
6. Hang Mass Loaded Vinyl Over the Door
Mass-loaded vinyl (MLV) is a dense and effective soundproofing material that can be hung over your bifold doors to reduce sound transmission. Its dense composition makes it excellent at blocking noise and a valuable addition to your soundproofing efforts.
MLV is a heavy, flexible sheet that you can hang over doors, walls, or any other surface that requires soundproofing. It’s designed to block sound waves and vibrations effectively.
Measure the dimensions of your bifold doors and cut the MLV to fit. It’s important to have a snug fit to maximize its soundproofing capabilities.
Use hooks, screws, or other suitable fasteners to hang the MLV over the door. Ensure it is securely fastened. Close the door and test if the MLV effectively reduces sound transmission. You should notice a considerable improvement in acoustic comfort.
Mass-loaded vinyl is a versatile solution used in various soundproofing applications. It’s known for its high density, which effectively blocks sound and makes it a valuable addition to your bifold door soundproofing project.
7. Hang Soundproof Curtains
Soundproof curtains, also known as acoustic curtains, are an excellent choice for those looking to dampen noise from their bifold doors while adding an aesthetic touch to their living space. These specialized curtains are designed to absorb and block sound effectively.
Soundproof curtains are typically made from thick, dense materials with sound-absorbing properties. They are lined with materials like mass-loaded vinyl, which effectively reduces noise transmission.
Choose soundproof curtains that match your decor and the size of your bifold doors. They come in various styles and colors.
Install a sturdy curtain rod over your doors and hang the soundproof curtains. Ensure that the curtains cover the entire door area.
Close the doors and evaluate the curtains’ effectiveness in reducing noise. You should experience a noticeable improvement in sound insulation.
Soundproof curtains provide soundproofing benefits and offer visual appeal, making them a versatile solution for your bifold door soundproofing project.
8. Replace with Acoustic Bifold Doors
If you want a more permanent and comprehensive soundproofing solution for your internal bifold doors, consider replacing them with acoustic ones. These doors provide superior sound insulation and create a peaceful living environment.
Acoustic bifold doors are engineered to minimize sound transmission, making them an excellent choice for rooms where noise reduction is crucial. (Source)
They come in various styles and finishes, allowing you to maintain the aesthetic appeal of your space. Acoustic doors are built to withstand wear and tear, ensuring long-lasting performance.
In conclusion, soundproofing internal bifold doors can be a rewarding and practical home improvement project. Whether you aim to create a quieter and more peaceful living environment or want to maintain your privacy, the techniques and tips outlined in this guide can help you achieve your goals.
Remember that soundproofing is a multifaceted project, and combining several techniques can often yield the best results. It’s crucial to assess your unique situation, identify the primary noise sources and select the appropriate materials and solutions accordingly.
Additionally, regular maintenance and inspection of your bifold doors are essential to ensure that your soundproofing efforts remain effective over time. By promptly addressing any gaps, cracks, or wear and tear, you can maintain a quiet and serene atmosphere within your living spaces.
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.