Do Soundproof Curtains Work?
Most people don’t think that soundproofing curtains really work. If you shop around for soundproof curtains online, you can see lots of very negative reviews by angry customers. And the problem with this is that people don’t quite understand what soundproof curtains really are. You can’t expect to put up some curtains and live in complete silence. Soundproof in the case of curtains really means ‘sound dampening.’
The difference is that soundproof curtains will not block all the sound in the world. It’s just not going to happen. But soundproof curtains can work to dampen the sound and reduce what you hear significantly. If you have some construction going on outside your house, closing the soundproof curtains is not going to make the sound go away. But it will work to dull the noise so that it doesn’t make you want to claw your eyes out.
It’s more of a muffling effect. Remember that curtains are still fabric, and they’re built out of a plushy material that helps to absorb sound and minimize it. Think of it like screaming into a pillow. The pillow is going to muffle all that sound, but if you scream loud enough it’s not going to block it. But it’s definitely going to make it a lot quieter than if you just screamed at the ceiling.
And so, the answer is yes, soundproof curtains do work. The problem is that they work in a way that isn’t satisfactory to everyone. They dampen the sound and are excellent for negating a lot of the noisy street ruckus, but they won’t completely soundproof your house.
Do Curtains Absorb Sound?
Normal curtains will not absorb sound. Normal curtains are thin, silky fabric and have absolutely no effect on blocking sound. However, if you have a quality pair of soundproof curtains, they can indeed absorb sound.
This is because most soundproof curtains are crafted from layered vinyl, which is compressed to make it as soundproof as possible. When soundwaves hit the curtain, some of them get through but a lot of them are blocked and absorbed by the material.
The good thing about soundproof curtains is that they typically stretch from the ceiling to the floor and cover the entire window.
This means even as the sound is seeping inside through the thin cracks around your window, it has nowhere to escape because the curtain completely seals the area around the window. It then effectively absorbs the sound coming in from outside like a trap.
Are There Curtains that Block Out Noise?
There are certainly some curtains that are great for blocking out noise. But you need to know which curtains to purchase. While they all look very similar, there are a few ways you can tell if the curtains will block out noise or not. One of the best methods is to use a flashlight.
Hold the flashlight to the curtain and see if the light passes through. If it does, the curtain is probably too light and it won’t block out noise. If it’s an effective soundproof curtain, it should be able to absorb both light and sound.
You also want to check the size of the curtain. If your curtain is dangling just below the windowsill, it’s not going to block out any noise. The noise from outside will simply go under the curtain and into your house. You need to make sure that the curtain has a little bit extra length so that it covers from the ceiling to the floor. When sound comes in, it will get trapped in a secondary enclosure, meaning the space between the curtain and the wall. This will make sure that the curtains are blocking the noise from outside.
You may be looking to block noise from coming into your garage, or blocking noise from exiting your garage, say if you have a sound system in your garage and don’t want to bug your neighbours.
How Can I Soundproof My Curtains?
If you’re looking to soundproof the curtains you already have, it’s not actually that hard. You just need to add an extra layer of fabric onto the interior part of the curtain. Leave the part that faces into your room alone and add an extra layer to the side that faces the window. You don’t even need a needle and thread. You can use pins and clips, but you will need to cut your own fabric. And to be quite honest, it’s a lot of work and it’s going to cost more money to soundproof the curtains you already own than it would to just buy an actual set of soundproof curtains.
If you want to go the DIY route, we suggest using a thermal window liner. This is a special liner built out of a sound-dampening fabric that will add an entire layer of soundproofing to your otherwise thin curtains. This stuff is great and affordable. It easily attaches to your curtains with grommets for quick installation – no pins or needles required!
Do Blackout Curtains Help with Sound?
We can answer this one pretty easily. Blackout curtains are not soundproof curtains. Blackout curtains are designed specifically to block out all the light that enters a room. Soundproof curtains are designed to block traffic noise, the racket from your neighbours, and barking dogs. Soundproof curtains are thick enough that they can work as an extra layer of insulation for heat or cold. But blackout curtains are only designed for light. These are not the same thing. Blackout curtains typically come as a simple fabric with a unique liner that keeps out sunlight. They are not made from the same fabric as soundproof curtains.