Soundproofing a garage, especially when it is being used as a drum room or band rehearsal space isn’t the easiest of tasks, but you can significantly reduce noise escaping with some soundproofing measures – which I am going to go into in detail here.
The reason it’s hard to completely soundproof a garage is due to the way in which garages are built – they tend to have flimsy and lightweight doors, windows, and structures, which are hard to work with.
But don’t let that put you off.
You also might have already read on forums where various construction experts will tell you that you need to spend thousands of dollars building some insane interior wall structure or even a “room within a room”.
Is this true?
Granted, there will be benefits to doing so, but it’s not always necessary to spend a load of money on soundproofing your garage for drums of band rehearsals. Some cheap and quick tasks might actually be all you need to do, and could give you the sound reduction you are looking to achieve.
I will list the cheap ways in which you can soundproof a garage for drums, with steps listed below. These are alternative ways for low cost soundproofing which could mean you can avoid having to pay builders and soundproofing specialists to construct something more permanent.
Try my methods first, as you could save yourself a heck of a lot of money.
Believe me, it is possible to get great results without spending thousands of dollars, and in the steps below, I will show you how you can soundproof a garage for drums in some very simple steps.
I will start off with the doors and windows as these will be the main areas where noise will be escaping.
Soundproof a Garage for Drums or Band Practice
As I’ve mentioned, garages will have very poor sound and acoustic insulation. The windows will typically leak 80% of noise so it’s imperative that you address these first up.
Step 1: Soundproof the Windows
I have written extensively on the website about how you can soundproof a window. When it comes to garages though, my recommendation would be a little bit different, as in many cases you might not even require the light coming in.
If you aren’t bothered about light coming through the windows into your garage, then simply brick the windows rather than soundproofing them.
By bricking up the windows completely you will get the best soundproofing results, as they are one of the main areas where the sound of your drumming will leak through. Depending on your expertise, this could be something you could do cheaply.
If that isn’t an option, then you should triple glaze them – both options are going to require a lot of disruption and hard work though, and possibly a lot of expense.
There is another way though.
It’s called a removable acoustic window plug.
But you will need to make it yourself, as it will need to fit the exact dimensions of your own window. You can read how to do it here where I lay out step-by-step instructions for making a soundproofed window insert. It will look something like the illustration you see below.
The benefit of using an acoustic window plug is that you simply put it in when playing the drums or during band practice, and then take it once you’re finished.
If you do decide to build one of these then make sure it’s completely airtight, otherwise it’s rendered kind of useless.
Another item you can use to treat the windows would be acoustic blankets or soundproofed curtains. In fact, you can use these to complement the plug, or use them independently. You might want to use all 3 – see what works for you.
You can pin up acoustic blankets temporarily over the window space, or permanently place soundproofed curtains.
My recommendation for acoustic blankets would be the Singer products. View the latest prices on Amazon to find out more.
You can cut them to size, but always cut them a couple of inches either side of the window space to ensure maximum coverage for soundproofing the window in your garage. You simply then tack them up to cover the window space.
Also known as sound absorption sheet, acoustic blankets are designed to absorb sound. In acoustic tests, some of the better products on the market have been shown to absorb as much as 80% of sound escaping a room – which could be ideal if you are playing drums loudly in your garage!
You can read more about soundproofed curtains here, or purchase these recommended ones on Amazon.
For drummers and bands practicing though, they have another benefit.
Because acoustic blankets or curtains absorb sound, this means they they will also reduce echo coming back into the room so you get less distortion when playing.
A hard window will reflect sound back into the room, by using an acoustic blanket covering the window space it will soak up sound, reduce the noise leaving the room, and absorb the amount of echo.
Step 2: Soundproof the Garage Door
Next would be the garage door.
As a moving part, and typically a very large area, I would look to use acoustic blankets or sheets to cover the entire interior of the garage door.
You will need to cut them to size, but also make sure that they do not prevent the garage door from opening and shutting during normal everyday use.
A cheaper alternative to acoustic blankets would be moving blankets that are used when moving to a new house. They won’t work as well, as they are not designed to absorb sound. It will save you money but make sure you buy the thickest ones possible, and perhaps even double or triple them up.
The best thing to do is look at the items on a website like Amazon, measure up, and then see how much you will be spending depending on your own budget.
Here are my recommended products from Amazon, click the links below to see the latest process and calculate how much you will need for the garage door.
When fitting them use grommets on both sides but make sure that the hooks you place to hang the material are very sturdy.
Step 3: Soundproof Standalone Internal and Entrance Doors
Standalone doors will also need soundproofing. There is a professional and expensive solution which involves buying an expensive soundproofed door – that costs a lot of money though.
There are cheap alternatives to soundproofing an internal door – for example you can read how I did this with a laundry room door in my own home.
In simple terms though what you need to do is eliminate any cracks or gaps around the door that will be leaking out sound. Chances are it’s a hollow door too, so the surface of the door will also need to be soundproofed. Here’s what you can do:
- Fix a soundproof door blanket to the door – buy on Amazon.com
- Fix a door sweep cover at the bottom of the door – buy on Amazon.com
- Fix weatherstripping inside of the door frame – buy on Amazon.com
The aim is to pad the door and to ensure that any gaps or cracks are completely covered and airtight where possible.
Step 4: Soundproof the Garage Walls
Many garages will already have thick walls, but if there are any holes or gaps then make sure that you plug them. Even small drill holes will let sound escape.
If you don’t have thick concrete walls, then my advice would be to use acoustic blankets again, similarly to how I recommended you soundproof the garage door.
You can hang them by using rods or hooks from the top of the walls, and by doing so you can absorb a lot of the drumming sound or band noise.
The acoustic blankets will also help you to reduce echo coming back into the room, with the benefits the same as I described in the earlier window section.
Step 5: Soundproof the Garage Ceiling
This might not really be a consideration to you, as most noise from speakers will be pointing outwards rather than up, so you might give this aspect a miss altogether.
You could use soundproof blankets again, or a better solution would be sound absorption sheets or tiles, which can be stuck to the ceiling.
My recommendation would be the excellent Pro Studio Acoustics product, which you can buy on Amazon.com – click that link to see what their latest prices are.
Step 6: Soundproof the Floor
It’s possible that you haven’t even considered soundproofing your garage floor if using it as a band rehearsal or drumming room.
After all, who will it effect?
The answer is “you”.
The sound from your drums and speakers will bounce off a concrete floor and cause absolute havoc with acoustics, echo, and distortion.
Lay some old carpet and the thicker the better to absorb sound.
Don’t feel that you have to take all of the above steps when soundproofing a garage as a drum or band practice room – just a few of the tasks laid out above could be all you need to reduce the sound enough to produce the required results.
You could alternatively spend thousands of pounds on building up soundproofed walls with additional layers including dry walling, soundproofed padding, double doors, bricked up windows and loads more.
Before you do that though, try the steps above and see how it gets on.
Hopefully you are now ready to lay down some serious drumming sounds in your garage!