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In this guide, I’ll be showing you different ways of reducing echo in a room cheaply.
With the costs of soundproofing spiking high as $3000 to $8000 in big cities such as New York, not everyone is ready to spend such amount for a project that could be DIY. (Source)
If you’re ready to get your hands dirty, then DIY soundproofing is a great way to save some bucks and seem unwanted noises and echoes at bay.
Soundproofing and reducing echo in a room mean that you have to deal with all surfaces of your room- floors, walls, ceiling, windows, and doors.
Echo is a result of sound reflection after hitting hard surfaces such as walls, floors, or ceilings. The basic concept in reducing echoes is creating a soft surface or creating a pattern in your room that prevents sound waves from hitting the walls.
Reducing Echo in A Room Cheaply: A List of Practical Ways
Below are simple and yet practical ways of reducing echo in a room cheaply. For the best results, you can implement two or three methods. Let’s get started.
1. Fill the Room with Furniture
There is a difference between a room filled with furniture and that without when it comes to the amount of echo.
Noise bounces off from the floor or the walls back to the source resulting in echo. Too much furniture in a room absorbs those reflections, thereby minimizing echo.
Good furniture to consider is a couch. You can get several of them depending on the size of the room then push them against the walls.
A bookshelf such as Sunon Collection 5-Shelf Wood Bookcase is also another furniture you should consider. Make sure you fill them with books that you can buy secondhand.
You can also add wall art or any other accessories that you prefer.
Stock towels and neatly arrange them on the towel bars on the bathroom wall or door. The towels fabrics also absorb reflection and minimize echo.
2. Acoustic Foam Panels
Apart from adding furniture, you should also consider acoustic foam panels to minimize echo. The panels are made with sound-deadening properties that reduce echo in a room.
Panels such as Foamily 12 Pack- Acoustic Panels Studio Foam Wedges can be installed in any room. You can install them on the walls or the ceiling.
The installation process is pretty simple, and you won’t need to ask for a professional’s help. You can make this your DIY project and save up some money.
Apply an adhesive on the panels before installing them on the walls or ceiling. Remember to clean and dry the surfaces first before installation.
Acoustic panels come in different shapes and colors so you can choose the one that goes well with the room.
If you have a bigger room, the panels can be costly to purchase, so you should consider building them yourself.
3.Use Curtains to Cover the Windows
A window made of glass reflects sound in a room, adding to the amount of echo heard. So the best way to minimize that noise is by covering the windows with acoustic curtains.
These curtains help minimize echo thanks to its material, which is made of sound insulation properties. The material is thicker than the regular curtains, which explains why it is effective at minimizing noise.
Its ability to absorb noise makes it a useful item to have in a room prone to echo.
The curtains are also elegant, and they also come in different colors and designs. You can also get customized curtains to fit your room desires.
Choose acoustic curtains like NICETOWN Bedroom Full Blackout Curtain Panels, Super Thick Insulated Grommet Drapes, Double-Layer, which has an extra noise deadening property.
You can also hang the curtains on the walls since the idea is to leave no surface that allows sound reflection.
Installing them is easy, and you won’t even need a professional’s help. Simply purchase drills and rods from a hardware store if you don’t have any at home.
4. Rugs for Your Floor
Since sound waves bounce off from a bare floor, you should consider getting thick rugs to cover them.
A thick and shaggy rug is much effective at noise reduction because the fibers on the carpet absorb the echo. In addition, the rug provides extra feet comfort and also improves the appearance of the room.
Use KKONION Ultra Soft Long Plush Shaggy Area Rugs to cover many areas of the room as possible. This will ensure there is no surface for sound to bounce off.
If the rug is not enough, consider installing a carpet. Rugs come in smaller designs, and they may not cover as much area as you would like. You can also get a customized carpet for your room.
Remember to purchase one which has acoustic properties. A good example is Acoustic Liner- Modern Day Carpet Underlay (19.4sqft).
Installing a carpet is pretty easy if you have the time, just make sure you clean and dry the floor before the installation.
5. Install Floor Underlays
A better alternative to carpets or rugs is installing floor underlays. The underlays are thick, which makes them effective at noise reduction.
These underlays are placed beneath the floor and the carpets or mats. The process requires much effort, which is why you should consider hiring a professional.
The process involves removing the original floor then installing the underlay before installing the existing floor.
An underlay like Floor Muffler UltraSeal Underlayment (100 sq. ft Roll) is designed with acoustic and moisture protection that effectively minimizes reverberations.
6. Get Fabric Instead or Metal Blinds
Metal or wood blinds increase the amount of echo produced in a room. Even though a home or an apartment may come with these blinds, you should consider replacing them with fabric blinds.
A softer fabric blinds are much effective at absorbing echo in a room. For better results, pair the blinds with acoustic curtains.
Get fabric blinds like Chicology Cordless Magnetic Roman Shades, which are pretty easy to install.
A benefit of these blinds is that they don’t produce noise from rustling due to the wind.
7. Use Plants
Vegetation is also a good option when it comes to minimizing echo in a room. Besides adding to the room’s greenery appearance, vegetation helps in clean air circulation.
A room filled with plants has less noise from the echo compared to a room without.
Place the plants at comers of the room for effective results.
8. Install Mass Loaded Vinyl on the Walls
One great material for noise reduction is mass loaded vinyl even though they can be rather expensive.
Mass loaded vinyl have noise-canceling properties that manage to absorb and minimize echo in a room. Choose an MLV like Arrowzoom New Black Mass Loaded Vinyl for your room.
Final Thoughts on Reducing Echo in A Room Cheaply
Above are some of the best tips on reducing echo in a room cheaply. Most of these tips you can implement them using readily available material in your home.
You can also use household items to soundproof a room, and this will help you get rid of echoes and unwanted sounds from leaking in and outside your home.