Does Soundproofing Work Both Ways? (Discover the Secret)

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Whether it’s your recording studio, office, room, or anywhere else, one frequently asked question is, “does soundproofing work both ways“?

Does Soundproofing Work Both Ways

Proper soundproofing helps block external noise while keeping your conversion confined. However, it’s tricky to say it works both ways because we need to define proper soundproofing.

Soundproofing a room requires mass, a lot of it, to prevent sound from migrating into and out. Usually, this works theoretically, but your experience might differ from what you expect for several reasons.

Thus, in this post, we’ll consider how soundproofing works in both ways and effective methods to achieve this quest.

Does Soundproofing Work Both Ways?

Soundproofing materials can block or absorb sound going through it – either in or out. Hence, these materials should stop sound from moving in and out of your room – technically. But some situations prove this theory wrong, which we’ll discuss later in this post.

Does Soundproofing Work Both Ways

Also, it would be best to keep in mind that it’s nearly impossible to have a perfectly soundproof room, which means you can only get a perfectly soundproof space to some degree. However, this does not mean you cannot achieve a near-perfect noise-free room.

When it comes to soundproofing a room, many factors are in play, from windows to doors and walls. Therefore, it’s essential to employ several principles to ensure the room is effectively soundproofed. This included understanding what blocks sound waves in both ways and what to ignore for a cost-effective soundproofing project.


Walls with air cavities tend to reduce the density of the walls, which act as loopholes for sound to pass through them and irritate you. The amount of sound reaching you hinges on the scale of the air cavities in the walls. The more holes in a wall, the lesser its absorption capability.


Sound passes through walls and can also be reflected off of the walls. This is another nuisance you might face if sound reflection is not contained. Therefore, it’s imperative that you dampen the sound or noise to increase sound absorption and reduce noise reflection.

The best way to go about this is to increase the wall’s mass. We’ll explore this principle in detail in the coming session.


Another effective principle in soundproofing is decoupling. This process requires you to keep the floors and walls separated, and this partition ensures noise and other vibrations are isolated from the different sets of floors and walls.


As said earlier, adding more mass to the walls increases their absorption ability. MLVs (mass-loaded vinyl) and drywall are two examples of the effect of additional mass. Increasing the mass of the wall helps reduce the sound wave’s resonance.

This is the most important for soundproofing a room among the key principles we’ve discussed so far. It helps soundproof your room on both sides. However, you might want to isolate the noise from the other side by putting a barrier between both walls for the best results. This way, you can trust sound not to migrate from or into your room.

Unfortunately, this won’t be the solution to all acoustic management problems. For instance, acoustic foam is excellent for damping the sound in a room since it’s a perfect material for reflecting rather than absorbing sound waves.

Another example is an acoustic foam with a smooth and textured side. The side with a textured surface offers a perfect solution for sound reflection since noise won’t bounce off of its surface easily. In short, the textured surface of acoustic foam is much more effective for the dissipation of sound waves.

All in all, most soundproofing methods will work both ways. Decoupling isolates the sound in the confines of your room while increasing the mass of your wall will help with sound absorption. The most important takeaway is that not all soundproof methods effectively Keep/ block out the noose on both sides.

Best MethodsTo Soundproof Both Ways

There are many options out there, and they differ from one another in terms of cost-effectiveness and efficiency. If you are looking to soundproof your room both ways rather than blocking out the external noise from traffic, lousy neighbors, home appliances, etc., it’s vital to pick the best soundproof method available.

What’s more? It would be best to remember that this method comes with some limitations. For instance, trying to decouple a shared wall might pose problems since you have to get consent from the other party.


One of the best ways to soundproof your room is by decoupling. This method involves separating the rooms physically, and Detaching the rooms minimizes the transmission of sound and other vibrations. On the other hand, decoupling can be expensive and requires professionals to install it.

Also, if the wall is shared, you might have to get your neighbor’s consent before proceeding. To avoid this, you might want to settle for stud walls. When using this method, you should leave an air cavity between the walls and include insulation on the top. Sadly, this increases the cost of decoupling your room, albeit it’s an efficient solution.

Furthermore, another option involves having a single cavity and insulating the space between them to block noise. Keep in mind that this option is not as effective as double-studded walls.

Still, on its downsides, decoupling tends to cause acoustic resonance, especially with bass. To tackle this issue, it’s best to increase the wall’s mass to help attenuate and prevent the vibration from traveling through the wall.

Increased Mass

If you don’t want to knock on your neighbor’s door for permission, then the best way to do this is by increasing the mass of the floor and walls, including your side of the shared border. Adding more mass makes the wall thicker to prevent sound waves and other vibrations from traveling through.

When it comes to increasing the mass, drywall is the right pick. Drywalls increase your existing walls’ bulkiness. This comes with its pros and cons. While it might help solve your invading noise issue, it takes up space in your room.

Another decent option to try out aside from drywalls is the mass-loaded vinyl. It’s versatile and suitable for use just about anywhere. It comes in different sizes and forms.

Also, you can paint over them to add exciting visuals or improve your home’s overall aesthetics without losing their soundproofing properties.

Also, you can fill or stuff your wall’s cavities with some of the best acoustic materials like denim and fiberglass insulation. Both options are easy to maintain and handle and offer an impressive soundproofing rating of 52 STC.

Ceiling Insulation

Are you living with a stomping neighbor? Insulating your ceiling might be what you need to regain your peace and quietness. Ceiling insulation provided the much-needed barrier between you and the noise from your neighbor upstairs. You can add a denim or fiberglass insulation to your ceiling to help block out more noise.

Floor Insulation

Similar to ceiling insulation, insulating the crawl space and floor can improve your soundproofing result. There are several options you can try to insulate the floor like placing heavy rugs on the floor.


Does soundproofing work both ways? Yes, it does to some degree. Unfortunately, not all soundproofing methods are effective on both sides. However, they will help reduce the transmission of sound waves and noise. Therefore, combining more than one method is better for the best soundproof result.

David Briley

David Briley

My name is David Briley, a soundproofing expert with a burning passion for curating and creating audio since adolescence. The need for a quiescent working and living environment cannot be overemphasized.

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