Creating a Noise-Free Retreat: How to Soundproof a Bathroom
There is one request from customers that I love to help out with because it is an underrated aspect of everyday life: soundproofing bathrooms. The bathroom is a uniquely important part of any dwelling. It’s where we dispose of refuse – not the most glamorous activity, but hey, it’s important! It is also where we go to clean and refresh ourselves, to get ready for the day, and have moments of relaxation and downtime in the shower and bath.
All of these unique activities make unique sounds – many of which would preferably be contained within the bathroom. For example, it would be preferable if the flushing of a toilet and the sounds that go along with that activity be inaudible to those in adjacent rooms and on the other side of the door. Likewise, it would be nice if when taking a bath to relax, sounds from the kids’ bedroom next door or living room on the other side of the wall with a loud TV could be silenced for peak serenity.
The answer for all is clear: soundproof the bathroom! In this article, I will go over the live acoustics and sounds common to the bathroom and explore in detail how we can soundproof appropriately.
Understanding Sound Sources in a Bathroom
The unique sounds coming from the bathroom are best left for the privacy of the bathroom, meaning our soundproofing objective is to keep those sounds contained within.
Internal Bathroom Noises
Whether running a bath, a shower, or the sink, running water – although certainly not the most unpleasant sound in the world – is the key background noise in a bathroom that we’re looking to eliminate.
Let’s face it – we all have to go to the bathroom and there’s nothing embarrassing about it. That said, guests and even residents of the home may want to keep the goings-on in the bathroom to themselves, and the only way to achieve that is for no one outside of the bathroom to hear the toilet flush.
Ventilation Fans and Heaters
A critical component of a well-run bathroom is ventilation fans. Depending on the climate, or just the wishes of the home’s occupant, heaters are also routinely featured. Both – especially in conjunction – can create a lot of noise that penetrates the doors, walls, and windows, which adds an annoying hum to the atmosphere outside and near to the bathroom.
External Bathroom Noises
Now let’s talk about the noises we want to block from the outside when in the bathroom.
A bathroom is unique in that while it is on one hand where we go to relieve ourselves and clean up, it’s also a place of relaxation where we can relax in the shower and refresh ourselves, or maybe enjoy a glass of wine and a book in a hot bath with epsom salts and bubbles! It’s great to block out the rest of the world if only for a short little while.
Sounds from the Home
Kids, TVs, kids, guests, music, kids, dogs, cats, you name it! There are multiple lives all going on together outside of the bathroom door, and sometimes it’s nice to have a moment of silence in the bath and block all of the noise.
Outside Sounds from the Window
The more urban the residence, the more this will be an issue. Cars and trucks, honking, banging, sawing, mowing, there’s a lot going on out there! Best to block all sounds coming from the window to truly create your own private space.
How to Soundproof a Bathroom the Right Way
Now that we’ve explored the problems, let’s solve them! When it comes to soundproofing, there is one thing that should be understood upfront: for the best results, it’s best to do some renovation. We can absolutely achieve some measure of soundproofing goals without redoing walls, floors, and ceilings, but it really helps to do so. Fortunately, the bathroom is the most commonly redone room in a residence, and they are typically small changes, so adding new drywall and/or flooring may not be that big of a deal.
Let’s take a look at the options with some mild renovation:
Soundproofing Walls and Ceilings
Combining the power of AudioSeal® Mass Loaded Vinyl (MLV) Soundproofing Barrier, Resilient Sound Isolation Clips (RSIC-1), and Green Glue Noiseproofing Compound is all that is needed to properly soundproof the bigger areas of concern – walls and the ceiling. To install these products, the drywall will need to be removed, the soundproofing products installed, and then new drywall installed and painted.
While not “easy,” this is a powerful soundproofing treatment that with a little bit of effort will keep sounds from coming in and going out. It may just be the perfect time to update the paint anyway, or maybe add tile.
Windows and Doors
Soundproofing the bathroom windows and doors is a bit easier, and simply involves adding a PrivacyShield® Window Seal Kit to the window and installing a PrivacyShield® Soundproofing Door Kit with Acoustic Threshold to add jamb seals, a threshold seal, and an automatic door bottom to seal the door acoustically. Depending on the material and make-up of your currently installed door, it may make sense to replace it entirely with a PrivacyShield® Soundproof Door.
If you’re lucky and the walls and ceilings are already dense enough that sound isn’t coming in or going out through them, treating the windows and doors with the above products could get your bathroom soundproofed in a simple afternoon of labor!
Additional Options for Walls and Ceilings
If you aren’t enthused by the idea of renovating your walls and ceilings, we offer PrivacyShield® Soundproofing Composite Foam that can be adhered to the walls to provide significant soundproofing. Sometimes being creative with this product within your unique scenario could be the answer you need without a huge overhaul.
For an even more refined look, our AlphaSorb® Barrier Acoustic Panels can provide some soundproofing that also provides an aesthetic to the bathroom.
No Matter Your Bathroom, We’re Here to Help
At Acoustical Solutions, we pride ourselves on understanding a customer’s unique scenario and developing a unique, effective solution. I love speaking to client’s about bathrooms and how we can transform them acoustically into calming, serene places
For more information about soundproofing a bathroom, please reach out today and we’ll find exactly what you need!
To learn more about how Acoustical Solutions can solve your noise control problems, use our contact form, call one of our Acoustical Sales Consultants at (800) 782-5742, or visit us on the web at acousticalsolutions.com.