Car Soundproofing: 7 Methods for Vehicle Sound Deadening

A man driving a soundproofed car

Last updated: March 16, 2022 at 11:53 am

Loud and noisy car rides can be a huge headache during a daily commute and being unable to talk to family and friends riding beside you in the car is dreadful. Thankfully there’s no longer any need to deal with such dreaded sounds because there are many different (and easy) ways to effectively slash outside noise in half.

There are several ways to soundproof your car, resulting in a safer driving environment and a more comfortable ride. There are three areas of the car to focus on when soundproofing; the floor of the car, the doors, and the tyres. Within these areas, there are different ways of tackling the noise entering your vehicle.

We have compiled six ways to soundproof your car. And you may not believe that the most impact you can have on soundproofing your car starts in the front seat.

6 Ways to Soundproof Your Car

1. Floor Damping Mats

You might be surprised to hear that most outside noise comes from right beneath your feet. Car floors have a surprisingly thin barrier between the cabin and all that lie beneath. Bumpy roads, loud tyres, a spinning axel, wind, traffic, and many other factors create a massive amount of noise.

Installing damping mats on your car floor can significantly decrease the volume of outside noise brought into the cabin, cutting it by up to half. Floor damping mats are a thick foam shield that absorbs sound from the vibrations that come through the floor of your car.

Top brands include Silent Coat, Dodo Mat, and Dynamat, which can be purchased online and require simple self-installation. We’ve went into more detail on brands with our Silent Coat vs Dynamat article.

2. Insulating the Doors

If you are still looking for greater soundproofing after having added floor damping mats to your car, then the next best improvement is insulating the car doors. Here is another thin barrier between the cabin and outside, and in most vehicles, it is a rather empty space. Thus, you will see a significant improvement in muting outside noise from insulating the car doors.

However, this upgrade requires a more complex installation. The doors must be taken apart thoughtfully, and you must be careful not to obstruct any of the door mechanisms, such as those for the car locks and windows.

That being said, the materials are readily available, at the very least. Foam insulation, such as the material used in soundproofing floor mats, is also the best choice for the vehicle doors. There is even insulation with adhesive backing, as well as all-in-one kits designed to ease the process.

3. Change the Tyres

a quiet tyre being installed on a car

It may come as no surprise that the tyres on your car can transfer a significant amount of sound inside while driving. As the only part of the vehicle touching the ground, every vibration that passes through the tyres from bumps, holes, rocks, and the tyres themselves can create disturbing noise.

Switching your tyres for a higher quality product can be a great improvement to the volume inside your car. There are a few key traits to pay attention to when searching for soundproofing tyres. The first factor to look at is the size of the tyre. Larger tyres have more rubber to cushion between the ground and the metal of the tyres, which absorbs more vibrations before they are even able to reach the vehicle.

The width of the tyres also plays a role in soundproofing. The wider the tyre, the more contact with the road and more vibrations that will be picked up. Consider narrow tyres that can still properly support your vehicle’s make and model.

Additionally, many tyres feature a noise rating these days. It’s represented by a three-wave symbol, so look out for tyres sporting a single line. These tyres have got minimal noise while still providing great performance.

4. Insulate the Boot and Backseats

While installing foam insulation is the most helpful way to cut the noise coming through the floor of the car, it doesn’t hurt to place in the backseat floor and boot as well. As with the front floors of the car, the back floors and boot have similarly thin barriers that do little to block out noise.

By adding sound damping material to these areas as well, you can expect an improvement of comfortable quietness. It is simple enough to install in the back and boot, as it is in the front, and the same or similar material can be used. Rear insulation is one of the more simple fixes for improved car soundproofing.

Also read: Van Sound Deadening: How to Soundproof Your Van

5. Insulate the Roof

Another ergonomic solution to soundproofing your vehicle is insulating the roof. Similar to the doors, there is very little insulation in the roof. And unfortunately, wind can create a lot of disturbing and uncomfortable noise while driving.

By adding sound deadening material, such as foam, wind noise will be reduced. Material with adhesive peel-and-stick backing makes the job even faster and more convenient. As an added bonus, insulating the roof allows for better temperature regulation within the car, creating an overall more enjoyable driving experience.

6. Improve the Exhaust

A noisy exhaust system can add to the unwanted volume inside of your car. Sudden, uncharacteristically loud noises coming from the exhaust should be checked thoroughly, it’s never a good idea to let those go unnoticed.

However, the everyday noise can be helped in a few simple ways. Investing in a quality muffler will make the biggest difference in dampening sound coming from the exhaust. Checking for and fixing minor holes, cracks, and rusty patches can also help to properly seal the exhaust and decrease overall noise.

7. Use an Engine Soundproofing Blanket

An engine soundproofing blanket is a blanket which covers your engine, with the idea it should reduce engine noise by around 50%. The blanket has to fit properly and cover the noisiest of parts like the radiator and alternator.

There is a slight risk of the engine overheating if you use one however, so bear that in mind.

Conclusion: Soundproofing Your Car Made Easy

Soundproofing your car isn’t as challenging as it may seem. With just a few adjustments, a noisy drive will be drastically improved. Moreover, installing floor damping mats to your car is by far the easiest modification that will yield the most dramatic results.

Pay attention to the three main areas of the car for soundproofing; the floor of the car, the doors, and the tyres, and you are sure to see results. Focusing on improving these areas will give you a more comfortable and quieter ride.

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About the Author: AJ

AJ is a self-confessed soundproofing nut. He has written full-time on Quiet Living for the past 4 years, and has a wealth of knowledge about living a quieter life, soundproofing and fixing loud noises.