How to Soundproof a Dorm Room

Living in a dorm room is one rite of passage involved with pursuing a college degree.

A thick rug is a helpful tool in soundproofing a room.A thick rug is a helpful tool in soundproofing a room.
Often small and relatively bare, dorm rooms are blank slates for you to make your own. One unfortunate aspect of living in a dorm room is that in many, the walls seem paper thin. It is often possible to hear your neighbors clearly from your own room, which means they can probably hear you. There are ways to insulate some of the sound from your dorm room to maintain some of your privacy and keep you from disrupting your neighbors.

Invest in a heavy rug to cover the floor. The heavier the material of your rug and room fabrics, the more sound they will absorb. A rug helps to minimize echoing and reverberations from sound that may bother your neighbors, especially those who live below you. If possible, lay a mat beneath the rug to further absorb excess sound.

Arrange fabrics on the walls to absorb more sound. Again, this will help to reduce noise that may cause a disruption to your neighbors or violate your privacy. Foam or fabric-covered corkboard are great ways to hang fabric on the wall without violating fire codes. Check with your resident adviser for fire regulations in regard to wall decorations.

Install removable window coverings. Because you are living in a temporary environment, it is doubtful you will be able to seal off the window with plywood and caulk, nor would you most likely want to lose all natural sunlight. Instead, you can install window screens that can be attached to the inside of the window frame with Velcro strips. This can reduce 5 to 35 percent of noise.

Things You Will Need

  • Heavy upholstered rug
  • Fabric
  • Upholstery foam
  • Corkboard
  • Window covering

About the Author

Liza Hollis has been writing for print and online publications since 2003. Her work has appeared on various digital properties, including USAToday.com. Hollis earned a degree in English Literature from the University of Florida.