Street noises can be hateful when you are trying to relax at home. See below for noise reduction curtains.
Do you live in the city and are tired of the street noise during the rush hour? Perhaps you live on a street where your neighbors on the left decide they need to throw a loud party every weekend night. Perhaps your neighbors on the right are going after a loud house renovation project every other week. Or maybe a garage band across the street keeps the garage door open while they rehearse, “for a better sound”. And you just wish some peace and quiet to unwind after a tiresome week.
When the above situation describes you then buying noise reduction curtains can be the best investment you will ever make.
How To Find Noise Reduction Curtains
Often times noise reduction curtains are termed noise blocking curtains. The designation “noise blocking” is a bit over the top. You will never be able to find curtains that would both look good in your home and completely block the noise from the outside.
Reading through this article, however, you will be able to reach a great compromise. You will find here advice to get beautiful looking and very effective noise absorbing / dampening curtains for the home. You’ll get workable directions to pick such curtains on your own. You will know how to select your noise dampening curtains. You will know the right height and width of these curtains.
As soon as you receive your curtains delivered to your home and install them you will immediately experience added peace and quiet. You will realize how easy it is all of a sudden to relax in your home. You will be astonished at how much difference a well selected and properly sized (or, rather, oversized) curtain can make in your house.
How To Maximize Noise Reduction With Curtains In Your Home
Noise reduction is relatively hard to achieve in home curtains. Thus, it will be difficult for you to find noise reduction curtains by searching on Google. There are no curtains named “Noise Reduction Curtains” or “Noise Blocking Curtains” or even “Noise Absorbing Curtains”. But there are other qualities that you should look for to make sure that your curtains will reduce the noise significantly. These qualities are: The Weight, The Width, The Length, The Materials Used, and finally, The Hanging Rod.
Best Weight For Noise Reducing Curtains: Heavy
When you are buying curtains, just the weight alone per panel can tell you a lot about their sound absorbing quality. The higher the weight, the more outside noise the curtain will reflect, and the more it will also absorb. So, overall, there will be less outside noise in the house. In addition, the heavier the curtain, the more absorbing it will be for the lower frequencies of the sound, or noise. This will additionally remove some of the low frequency noise. Examples of low frequency noise include heavy machinery noise, large car and low frequency motorbike noise.
Find more information on curtain weight on the Best Heavy Curtains For Soundproofing Home page. That page will explain how doubling the weight of a curtain can reduce the noise two or even three times. This is a huge noise reduction.
Best Width For Noise Reduction Curtains: Extra Wide
What does it mean for curtains to be extra wide? The total combined width of the curtains needs to be two and a half to three times wider than the width of the window. Why are such extra wide curtains the best? Simple. You can only achieve the curtains to look “wavy” or “full” when they are closed if the total width is twice the window width. 2 1/2 to 3 times wider curtains will be “super wavy” or “extra pleated” or “super full” when they are closed. Pleated or wavy curtains have been shown to as much as double noise reduction, which is awesome.
In addition, our recommendation is to allow curtains to extend 10 – 20 inches to the left and to the right of the window. The extra curtain on the side of the window will cause more sound absorption into the curtain. The sound will not “leak” into the room on the side of the curtain.
Bottom line, your curtains should hang to look “super wavy” or “extra pleated” or “extra full” even when they are closed. Thus, we recommend the total width of curtain panels to be between 2 1/2 to 3 times the width of the window.
Best Curtain Length: Buy Them Tall, Hang Them High
You can just about guess now what I was going to say. Yes. To maximize sound reduction, you want the curtains to cover the area well beyond the top and the bottom of the window. The best solution would be to simply get floor to ceiling length curtains. That way you would completely prevent any “leakage” of sound through the space between the ceiling and the curtain or the floor and the curtain.
If floor to ceiling length of the curtain is not feasible for you, go for the Plan B. Don’t buy the curtains that only cover the window height. Get the longer/taller version of the curtains. It should stretch from well above the window top to well below the window sill. We recommend at least 10-20 inches or more overhang of the curtains above and below the window opening. This will achieve a reasonable noise reduction.
Best Materials For Noise Absorbing Curtains: Extra Fibers
There are three ways curtains can add fiber to increase noise absorption:
First, velvet or suede: velvet curtains and suede curtains naturally contain extra fibers protruding out of the curtain. This extra fibers gives the curtains a special “soft”, or “velvety” touch. It just so happens that such fibers cause extra sound absorption. This is why you will find velvet curtains in theaters, media rooms, and vocal booths. But they can be just as easily used in your living room and bedroom. They will really help you reduce the noise.
Second, extra curtain filler: the fiber can be added inside the curtain as a filler. The “Thermal” or the “insulated”, “thermalayer” or “thermaweave” or the “energy efficient” curtains will have a layer of extra fiber. That extra fiber will increase the noise reduction of the curtains. That is in addition to providing thermal insulation, that is, preventing the heat from escaping and entering through the window.
Third, extra lining: the extra fiber can be added in the form of extra lining. Look for “curtain liner”, or “window liner” or “blackout liner”. All of these will reduce the thermal losses but they will also reduce the noise protruding in through the curtains.
Best Curtain Rods: Wraparound Rods And Double Rods
By far the best curtain rods you can get, if you want to maximize noise absorption from the sources outside, are the wraparound rods. A wraparound rod will curve into the wall at the ends. It will attach itself with a few screws to the wall.
Why is wraparound rod the best for the noise reduction? Because that way, you will be able to avoid the gap on the side of the curtains between the wall and the curtain edge. You will be able to curve the curtain on the sides and allow it to touch the wall. That way sound will have no direct air path into the room on the sides of the curtain, between the curtain wall and the curtain. You will maximize sound absorption into the curtain material that way. As an added benefit, the blackout effect and the thermal insulation will be enhanced as well.
Double rods are also a good alternative. When you double up on the number of panels as described above, you can use both rods. Using double rod will also reduce the gap between the curtain and the wall and prevent noise and light from escaping to the sides.
Bottom Line, What Noise Reduction Curtains Should You Look Into?
When you follow the above recommendations for oversizing the width of the curtains, you can make even a regular blackout curtain into a curtain that removes a significant amount of noise. Quite likely it will be enough for you to enjoy your day and sleep undisturbed.
If you want to go all out and achieve home theater level of noise reduction and blackout, then Absolute Zero Velvet Curtains, reviewed here are the curtains to look into.