DIY Methods to Reduce The Noise of Your Upstairs Neighbors
Do you have incredibly loud neighbors who live above you? Maybe they’re a family of instrument players or maybe you’ve got ignorant people who love to blast their ghastly music when you’re trying to relax.
We’re guessing if you’ve found yourself upon this article then you’re going through something similar or you’re just sensitive to sound and looking to soundproof your home.
If you’re renting accommodation then you’re going to have to be prepared for some regular disruptive noise as it comes with the territory, however, there does come a point where neighbors are just making a nuisance of themselves and causing everyone who lives around them to suffer.
Not only could disruptive noise be causing you to have interfered with sleep, but it could also just make you more annoyed daily, causing you to be a miserable person to spend time with.
So not only is it important to reduce the noise coming from your upstairs neighbors for your health and wellbeing but also good for your sanity as well.
These DIY methods will help you with some solutions to reduce the noise levels of your noisy neighbors who live above you so you can live a more peaceful and less agitated lifestyle.
Please be aware that these methods may not be applicable for renters whose lease state that they cannot make any structural or more changes to their accommodation, so you’ll need to check with your landlord.
7 DIY Methods to Help Reduce The Noise of your Neighbors Upstairs
1. Ask Your Neighbors to Politely Keep The Noise Down
Your first port of call should always be to speak with your neighbors directly about the noise that is occurring and you’ll also need to find out what the source of the noise is.
You’ll need to be certain of these before you start making accusations at your neighbors and burning any previously built bridges between you.
Sometimes neighbors can be completely unaware of the noise they are creating or don’t quite realize how thin the floorboards are. Whether it be a dodgy loud bathroom extractor fan that’s being used at abnormal times of the day, or your neighbor watching action moves on their surround sound system, approaching the situation in a non-aggressive manner will help you resolve some of the issues.
Locate the source of the noise and pay a visit to your neighbors upstairs to explain the problem. Whilst some may think a firm ‘SHUT THE HECK UP’ may do the trick, we’d recommend politely explaining that the noise coming from their accommodation is very disruptive and starting to affect you.
Try to come to a solution instead of telling them to be completely silent. If your neighbors are musicians and do need to play their instruments to practice, then discuss your work schedules and find a time of day that is least disruptive to you for them to play.
Most people will be quite understanding, but prepare yourself for some outliers who may even try their hardest to be extra noisy to agitate their nagging neighbor below them. If this is the case and you’ve asked numerous times, then you always have the right to call the relevant authorities, especially if they’re being loud at unsociable times of the day.
It’s important to be open-minded in these situations - remember if you can hear everything your neighbor is doing, then chances are they’ll be able to hear you as well, so don’t go to them guns blazing.
2. Use Green Glue to Reduce the Noise
Green Glue is a good soundproofing solution and works most effectively when combined with another one of these methods from our recommendations.
It works amazingly as a noise dampener and is particularly effective at reducing the noise of low frequencies - so perfect if you have a man with a deep voice or someone who loves playing the drums as a neighbor.
You can find Green Glue at your local hardware or improvement store, but if it’s easier for you can you order it online here.
You can either remove your current ceiling to apply Green Glue on the areas that need sealing, or if you’re choosing to install another layer of drywall to help reduce the noise then you’ll need to install it with the Green Glue.
This may not be one of the best options if you’re restricted to what work you can do to your accommodation as Green Glue can prove difficult to remove.
3. Consider Installing Drywall to Your Ceiling
As we just previously mentioned in the last recommendation, installing drywall into your home can help significantly reduce the noise levels of your neighbors.
The more dense your ceiling is, the less noise that’ll be able to come through, so even if you already have one layer of the drywall as a ceiling, installing another would reduce the noise even more.
Installing a drywall ceiling is fairly inexpensive and can be done by yourself and anyone else who is willing to give you a helping hand. Make sure to find a strong adhesive to keep the drywall to the surface and keep it supported to the surface until it has completely dried.
4. Invest In Some Acoustic Foam For Your Home
There’s a reason why musicians and music studios use acoustic foam to cover their walls, and that’s because they’re so effective at soundproofing.
If you don’t mind the slightly unaesthetic look of having a foam ceiling in the comfort of your home, then it's a reasonably inexpensive and non-permanent method to reduce the noise levels coming from loud neighbors upstairs.
You’ll need to clean your ceiling thoroughly to make sure to remove anything that may cause the application of your foam to go wrong, for example, any spotlights you may have on your ceiling.
The foam tiles can be applied with adhesion if you live in a rented property and your landlord won’t let you use anything more permanent. However, if you own an apartment, you could consider using screws or nails to keep the foam tiles in place on your ceiling.
This pack of 50 Soundproof Foam Panels will work great for both rented and permanent properties and may be able to cover more than just one ceiling if the noise problems are intense.
5. Find Yourself Some Acoustic Tiles
Similar to how acoustic foam works, acoustic tiles are a great non-permanent option to help keep the noise levels down in your home. These tiles are attached to the ceiling using an adhesive or nailed in and can be done all by yourself without the need to hire a professional.
Acoustic tiles are a better option if you want something that’ll still keep your home looking like a home and not a music studio as they come in a variety of colors that’ll blend in with the vibe of your interior.
They won't be able to completely eliminate the noise problems from above, but they’ll help to reduce the sound to make it more bearable for you. For extra soundproofing, you could install your acoustic tiles to an additional layer of drywall in your home.
6. Rearrange Your Rooms In Your Home
If the noise from your neighbors above is only an issue in one room of your home, then you could consider rearranging the rooms so you cannot hear the noise.
For example, say your bedroom is directly below their living room and they watch loud movies every night, then you could consider moving your living room underneath so your bedroom can be further away from the noise so you can have a more peaceful sleep.
This is obviously not always a successful solution especially in smaller apartments, as the noise may still be as prevalent from the next room.
7. Weigh Up Your Final Options
You’ll need to be aware that these methods above will not completely block out all noise problems from your neighbors above, but simply reduce the noise levels so they are more manageable to live with.
The best solution is to combine two or more of these methods above to create a more comfortable living environment for yourself.
Another recommendation would be to invest in some soundproof earplugs and also a white noise machine to drone out the disruption from above.
If you’ve exhausted all these methods, or maybe your landlord will not allow you to make some of these changes to your home, then you’ll need to consider your options in regards to your living situation.
If the noise is having a severe impact on your sleep schedule and your well-being, then maybe it would be best to start looking for somewhere else to live, at least you might have the chance to have some more considerate neighbors?
If you do decide to look for a new place to live, then make sure you ask the landlord or the agent about the neighbors who live around you or maybe even know on the doors of the people who live in the accommodation and ask about what it’s like to live there, this way you’ll know about any issues before you move in.