Sounding great in your own living room and not bothering the neighbors is easier than you think. Acoustic foam insulation reduces sound by up to 50%. But problem is, how to hang acoustic foam without damaging walls?
To make sure that it works as a practice studio, there are steps to take:
- Soundproof the walls and ceilings with acoustic foam insulation
- Cover any other hard surfaces with sound-absorbing materials such as carpets or sound blankets
- Install sound dampening curtains on windows so that noise doesn’t escape through them
Hanging acoustic foam can be done in a few different ways depending on the surface and the adhesive.
For instance, spray adhesive is one of the most popular mounting methods for installing soundproofing insulation panels but it’s by no means the only option.
without further or do let’s get started.
Table of Contents
Why Use/or Not Use Acoustic Foam to Soundproof a Room?
A popular way to treat a room acoustically is with acoustic foam.
Available online and inexpensive, this can be an affordable and effective treatment for musicians who want to soundproof their practice space.
Acoustic foam comes in many colors, allowing you to choose one that suits the interior décor of your home studio.
However, there are some things you should know before I continue.
For instance, these are fire hazards and release a lot of smoke when burned. They also emit toxic fumes.
Furthermore, the acoustic foam will not soundproof a room completely.
Because sound can still bleed through the edges of the panels and around seams where gaps exist between two or more walls that are being sound-treated with it.
additionally, it won’t work if not installed correctly, and instead, it will bounce back the sound.
What this means is that if soundproofing your room, you have to use acoustic foam in the right way.
If you follow the steps in this guide, it will work. Alternatively, hiring a professional is an attractive option for improving DIY skills.
But before I take a look at how to hang acoustic foam without damaging walls, let’s cover some background information like What Is Acoustic Foam For?
What Is Acoustic Foam For?
Acoustic foam panels help eliminate echoes and reverberations inside a room.
- Acoustic sound foam is used to reduce sound from one area of the room, which prevents sound leaks in and out.
- Being a large piece of insulation has many uses around your home or apartment building – it will help keep noise levels down by reducing sound transmission outside the room that you are trying to dampen.
- It’s often found on walls near windows where there may be traffic
noises or in homes with close proximity to neighborswho don’t want their conversations heard through the wall.
- If you want to convert a room in your apartment into a recording studio, removing reverberation is important. Acoustic panels can be used for this, but note they will not soundproof the space entirely.
How to Hang Acoustic Foam Without Damaging Walls?
There are different methods on how to hang acoustic foam using a variety of techniques. Let’s examine them in detail.
For smooth surfaces and drywall
- For acoustic foam, use Loctite or 3M general purpose spray adhesive to make sure your acoustic foam stays in place.
- Use strong double-sided tape such as Gorilla Mounting Tape or Adhesive Squares to fix the acoustic foam.
- You can also use long T-shaped pins to hang your acoustic foam.
- Alternatively, use 3M Command Strips to hang it without damaging the walls.
For concrete surfaces
- You’ll need to use construction adhesive, such as liquid nails to hang the acoustic foam on the wall.
How to Hang Acoustic Foam with Minimal Damage
If you plan on hanging acoustic foam and don’t want to make holes or leave adhesive residue, your best option is 3M command strips.
These hooks are made to hold up to two pounds of weight and will also function on a variety of surfaces including wood, plaster, vinyl, drywall, or paint.
You can get these command strips in varying lengths (between 12-inch long) depending on the height you want your foam soundproofing suspended at.
This will not only protect your walls from damage but allows you to easily move or remove the panels when it is time.
When hanging acoustic soundproofing with minimal damage, make sure that it doesn’t cover any electrical outlets along the wall surface.
By making sure there is an appropriate distance between the soundproofing and anything else plugged into an outlet like lamps or speakers makes for a safer installation process as well.
Hanging Acoustic Foam with Adhesive Squares
In order to hang acoustic foam without damaging the wall, you need to position the panel by using a pencil or masking tape.
Start by thoroughly cleaning the surface with denatured alcohol or isopropyl.
Then clean it with paper towels or rags and let them air dry.
Avoiding common cleaners is important because their ingredients typically can affect the strength of a sonically-bonded adhesive.
With a ruler, measure the length and width of the acoustic foam panel.
Then mark these measurements on the adhesive liner with a pencil or marker to indicate where to place it back onto its backing sheet.
After that, remove one paper liner at a time but keep them nearby in case you need to replace any of them later.
Put one soundproofing panel face down over each marked area on the mounting squares and press firmly until they stick together for about 30 seconds.
Use your fingers or hands if necessary. The sound-absorption material will be applied even if there are small air bubbles left.
To mount the panel, remove 2nd paper liners from the back and attach it to their desired location. Hold pressure on it for at least 30 seconds so that the adhesive will stick properly.
Number of adhesive squares needed per panel
- 1 inches = 2 adhesive squares
- 2 inches = 3 adhesive squares
- 3 inches = 4 adhesive squares
- 4 inches = 4 adhesive squares
Hanging Acoustic Foam Panels with Spray Adhesive
There are different ways to mount acoustic foam without damaging walls. Spray adhesive works best with smooth surfaces, while textured surfaces like wallpaper won’t hold the panels well.
Using a backer material like cardboard or thin engineered wood will allow you to use spray adhesive on it instead of directly onto your wall.
- You want to make sure you’ve marked the parts of the wall, floor, or other surfaces with masking tape or a pencil.
- The surface must be thoroughly cleaned with isopropyl alcohol. This prevents the adhesive from sticking.
- Clean the area with a damp paper towel.
- When applying adhesive, make sure the room temperature is around 70°
- If your studio space is a little smaller than the acoustic foam and you can’t get it to be completely flat against the walls, make sure that attachment points are at least 2″ away from the wall with a minimum 6” gap on edges.
- To properly install the acoustic foam, apply the spray adhesive to both its back and the areas it will cover.
- Wait 10 seconds for the adhesive to set.
- Place the foam panel at (or near) the desired location and firmly press on it for about 30 seconds.
Install additional acoustic panels to cover the entire surface. You can install them as long as you maintain room temperature at 70 degrees for 2 days.
Best spray adhesives for acoustic foam:
- 3M Hi-Strength 90
- 3M Super 77
- Auralex Acoustics Foamtak
Recommended Acoustic Foam Products
There are five different acoustic foam products that we recommend. They all work well, especially when it comes to noise.
The quality is not the same for each product, so here are the five best products on the market today.
Auralex Acoustics Studiofoam Wedges
These acoustic foam panels are available in packs of 18 and 24.
They offer great performance at a low price and have an NRC (noise reduction coefficient) of 0.80.
This product can be used for soundproof ceilings, walls, and doors.
The sound quality is clear enough for recording vocals or instruments, making it a great choice if you want the best bang for your buck!
Auralex Acoustic SonoFlat
This is another foam panel from the same brand as before.
One advantage of these panels is that they have a high Noise Reduction Coefficient of 0.95, which means that you get excellent noise isolation because the sound can’t travel through them.
So when soundwaves hit it, they are absorbed and don’t get out.
Apart from acoustic insulation, these panels have many other uses too-
whether you want to reduce noise for your home or office space or need privacy in an emergency room.
Auralex Acoustic SonoFlat is available in various sizes so no matter how big your room is, there will be a panel sized just right for you!
Audimute AcousticColor Tile
These panels come in different sizes, you can get 36”x36” with NRC ratings of between 0.55 and 0.95. which is perfect for sound-absorbing panels.
They are also very lightweight, making them easy to hang and install on your walls without damaging the paint or leaving marks that can’t be removed easily.
Pro Studio Acoustic Foam
This acoustic foam is 2 inches thick, 12 inches wide, and 12 inches long with an NRC rating of 0.65.
This roll of soundproof foam is heavy so it’s best to have two people when hanging.
Auralex Acoustic Roominatior Foam Kit
This is another great product from Auralex, but with a slightly lower NRC rating of 0.6-0.65—slightly less effective than the other products discussed above.
It still has a sound absorption rating of 30-36dB, which is perfect for quiet practicing.
On How to Hang Acoustic Foam Without Damaging Walls In conclusion
When it comes to acoustic foam, the method you use to hang and attach your panels will depend on where in the room they’ll be located.
If they are going up against a wall or ceiling that is made of drywall, then using nails or screws makes sense.
You can even drill through sheetrock walls with a ¾-inch bit without any problems at all!
For those who want to soundproof
Above are different ways of hanging acoustic foam without damaging your rental unit.
Sometimes, you might need to hang acoustic foam. Read the following questions for help:
How Long Does It Take to Mount Acoustic Foams around the room?
It depends on the size of the foam you are mounting.
Yes, it is really simple, and yes, it won’t take you long before you have mounted all the acoustic foams.
The process of installing acoustic panels/foam is not an arduous one to begin with, regardless of how many panels or foam pieces need to be mounted.
Obviously, if there’s too many to count then obviously this question would not apply,
but for those with a few or even just a couple, I can assure them that they will be able to complete this project in no time and without hassle at all.
Can I use this Method to Install Acoustic Foam in a rented place?
Definitely. You can use hanging strips instead of adhesive or t pins to hang up the foam if you’re renting a property because hanging strips are removable and won’t leave a residue when you move out.
Installation is easy as placing the acoustic foam in-between furniture and heavy objects to hold it up while it dries.
Once dry, lightly push pins through the corner edges of foam panels, into heavy objects in your room such as bookshelves or dressers.
Where do you put acoustic foam in a room?
Acoustic foam is an absolutely necessary material in any room in order to reduce echo, and it blocks and absorbs sound waves.
If there are specific hard surfaces that need to be treated with acoustic foam, then apply the foam across the entire surface area.
There’s no need to stick it directly on the wall or tile; instead use an adhesive such as a sticky Velcro sticker and adhere the pieces of foam to each other where you want them positioned within your room.
If you have a concern about unwanted noises, then we recommend adding acoustic floor tiles where they may be needed.
How much does it cost?
Acoustic foam can range in price depending on factors such the length, density, and whether or not you’re willing to buy it by the yard and cut it.
However, estimates put it at about $20 per square foot for a piece of 2″ thick acoustic foam.
To be sure, if you are looking for inexpensive acoustic foam we recommend getting either Audimute AcousticColor Tile designed to be used as sound panels (costing roughly $8 per tile).
Or going with a fiberglass wood chip board which only costs about one dollar more than regular drywall.