How to Soundproof a Boiler Cupboard (Kitchen or Hall)

a boiler cupboard

Last updated: April 27, 2022 at 7:55 am

Boilers, whilst essential in a home, can be incredibly frustrating. They are often much noisier than expected, and the noise can travel throughout properties, disturbing you whilst you try to relax – or worse, whilst you try to sleep. A noisy boiler can ruin a good night’s sleep easily, especially in smaller or older properties.

In this article:

There are generally two types of boiler cupboard. The first is a hanging cupboard often seen in a kitchen beside the sink, and the other is a solid cupboard usually in the hall. We’ll look at 9 ways to soundproof both of these boiler cupboard types including weatherstripping, plasterboard and even soundproof panels.

Why Would You Soundproof a Boiler Cupboard?

If your boiler cupboard is making a lot of noise, don’t fret. It is completely normal for a boiler to make noise. Sometimes this is due to the pressure rising too high or air getting trapped in the system, causing bubbling and humming noises to emanate from the boiler itself.

Noises may also be caused by water travelling too fast or by the moving parts within the boiler. To tackle this noise, you can soundproof your boiler cupboard, reducing the amount of noise that your boiler makes.

Soundproofing a Boiler Cupboard (8 Different Ways)

There are a few different ways that you can soundproof a boiler cupboard. Some involve very minimal effort, whereas some involve much more work and DIY. If you try some of the easier, more inexpensive methods and they aren’t soundproofing your boiler cupboard enough, try one of the more costly methods.

1. Store Sheets/Towels to Block Boiler Noise

Best for: Solid hall cupboard

storing towels in boiler cupboard

One of the easiest and more common methods of soundproofing a boiler cupboard simply involves storing your sheets, towels, and other soft furnishings in the cupboard. Many boiler cupboards have shelves, and using these to store things such as duvets, towels and blankets can help to absorb the noise created by your boiler.

The soft furnishings create a barrier for the soundwaves coming from your boiler and can also work to reduce any reverberations travelling through the floorboards and door.

As a bonus, this is also a great way to keep your soft furnishings warm! If you’re ever cold, take a blanket from the boiler cupboard and cosy up!

2. Work on the Door

Best for: Hanging kitchen cupboard or solid hall cupboard

If you’re looking for something more permanent, it is worth considering doing some DIY work to soundproof the door. These are relatively simple jobs, but they can really impact the amount of noise coming from your boiler cupboard.

Door Sweep

A door sweep seals the gap between the floor and the bottom of the door. Door sweeps are often used on front doors and back doors to reduce drafts, but they can also be hugely beneficial in reducing noise. They are usually a simple piece of aluminium or plastic that can be attached to the bottom of a door to prevent air and sound movement from one side of the door to the other.

Door sweeps are generally easy to attach to your door. They usually come with instructions and everything you need to install them and compared to other soundproofing methods they are inexpensive to purchase. Since they stop all noise and air from travelling through the gaps in the door, they can substantially reduce the noise disturbance created by your boiler.

However, you might still notice creaking through the floor or walls, as the door sweep will not combat this noise.

Weatherstripping

Weatherstripping involves sealing gaps in doors or windows with specific weatherstripping tape. Usually, weatherstripping is done to protect homes or cars from the elements, reducing drafts and keeping homes warm.

However, weatherstripping also works as an effective soundproofing tool. Like door sweeps, weatherstripping tape blocks the gaps in your boiler cupboard door where sound and air are escaping. This keeps the noisiness of your boiler within the cupboard, ultimately reducing its impact on your day-to-day life.

The tape used for weatherstripping is usually cheap and it is easy to install, as it works just like any other tape. This also means it’s renter-friendly!

3. Soundproof Curtain or Blanket

Best for: Hanging kitchen cupboard or solid hall cupboard

Another simple and relatively inexpensive way to soundproof your boiler cupboard is to hang soundproof curtains or blankets across the door of the cupboard. This way, the sound is met by a barrier before it has time to travel under or around the door and disperse into your home.

Soundproofing curtains and blankets are usually made of multiple layers of fabric that are tightly woven and knit together. This creates a dense barrier for the sound to travel through.

4. Lay Carpet Inside

Best for: Solid hall cupboard

A lot of homes have wooden floorboards, and boiler cupboards are rarely carpeted. This in addition to wooden doors and gaps around the door can lead to rattling sounds coming from the boiler cupboard. The vibrations and noise coming from the boiler will reverberate through the cupboard and through the floorboards, causing it to be heard throughout the building.

Putting carpet tiles or a rug in the boiler cupboard will help to reduce this noise. Carpet absorbs much more sound than wood – estimated 10x more on average – preventing any noise travelling through your home.

5. Stud Wall Out and Fill With Acoustic Insulation

Best for: Solid hall cupboard

One of the most involved methods of soundproofing your boiler cupboard involves building stud walls within your boiler cupboard and packing the walls with acoustic insulation. You can build a stud wall easily using just timber, plasterboard, metal studs, nails and glue.

Once you have built your stud walls, you can fill the gaps between each stud with dense acoustic insulation. This provides a very thick, almost impenetrable layer for the soundwaves to try and pass through. This method of soundproofing does take more construction than other methods, but it is also a great long-term fix for your noisy boiler cupboard.

6. Invest in a Quieter Boiler

Best for: Both boiler cupboard types

There are some quick fixes that you can do to quieten your boiler, like bleeding your radiators regularly and checking the pressure, but if your boiler is so noisy that it is causing you regular disturbance it may be worth investing in a quieter boiler.

There are plenty of quiet combi boilers on the market, and whilst it may be a lot of money to pay in one go, it will improve your life by reducing any disturbance caused by your noisy boiler.

7. Fix Acoustic Plasterboard

Best for: Solid hall cupboard

Plasterboard is an easy-to-attach material that is often used in a range of DIY jobs. Acoustic plasterboard is just as simple to use but it is much thicker than other plasterboards, making it a much better soundproofing material. Its density makes it harder for the sound to escape the boiler cupboard.

When shopping around for plasterboard, you should try to find acoustic plasterboard with a high mass, as this will work the best for soundproofing.

8. Install Soundproof Panels

Best for: Hanging kitchen cupboard or solid hall cupboard

Soundproof panels, sometimes known as acoustic panels, are two sheets of foam with a sheet of fibreglass in between. The panels deaden and dampen soundwaves, stopping them in their tracks. This helps to prevent any reverberation, reducing the noise levels significantly.

Soundproofing panels can be costly, but they are easy to attach to walls and are a very efficient way to soundproof your boiler cupboard. You are unlikely to need many of them for a boiler cupboard, so the cost should not be too high.

9. Build an Airtight Enclosure

Often when a boiler cupboard is hanging beside the sink, it’s either open at the top, bottom or both. This obviously lets any noises easily escape and doesn’t offer any sort of soundproofing.

An easy way to solve this is to add additional mass (plywood) to fill any gaps where noise can escape. This can then be reinforced with some methods above like soundproof panels and weatherstripping.

Conclusion

There is a plethora of ways you can choose from to minimise the noise coming from your boiler cupboard. If you’re looking for a low-budget and easy fix, something like storing your soft furnishings in the cupboard or adding carpet tiles and/or a soundproof curtain can really reduce the noisiness of your boiler cupboard.

Alternatively, for those with a bit more money to spare or more DIY skills, something like acoustic panelling or a new boiler may be a suitable option.

Soundproofing your boiler cupboard can make your property feel much more like home, and for landlords, it can even help to increase the appeal to prospective renters! Long-term fixes like stud walls are most ideal for landlords, as they will require minimal maintenance during tenant leases.

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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 3 years, and has a wealth of knowledge about living a quieter life, soundproofing and fixing loud noises.

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