Noise Blocking Window Film: What Is It and How Does It Work?

Noise is an inevitable part of our lives. It’s everywhere around us. That’s why we try to think of as many solutions as possible to control the sound level in our homes.

If you have been with me reading my various tips on soundproofing, you have seen that practically every part of your house can be treated for soundproofing. Doors, windows, machines etc, whatever comes to your mind, you can make it sound more silent.

Here I shall tell you more about noise blocking window film. You will find out what it is and how it works. Moreover, I have found some interesting scientific discoveries on this subject to share with you.

noise blocking window film

What is noise blocking window film?

You are probably familiar with the fact there are many different types of windows based on their material and number of layers. These are the factors which significantly influence the sound properties of that window. Some of them will be more, some less soundproof.

Speaking of noise blocking window film, it’s an interlayer film sandwiched between two external layers. The layer in the middle is the one with sound insulation properties and it is known as a core layer. The “main task” of this core layer is to reduce sound transmission.

How does noise blocking window film work?

The whole process is pretty much simple. The sound travels and comes across an obstacle, in this case, window. The window with sound-blocking film absorbs the sound and the moment the sound is inside the room, it’s already significantly less loud.

Just to mention, there are also films with different insulation properties. So, you can also find films which reduce the heat and the light. They can come either as one, or multipurpose (such as heat and sound insulation or heat and light insulation).

noise-blocking-windows

Speaking in terms of frequency, a human most distinctively hears ranges from 1000 to 4000Hz. As for the noise blocking window film, it can reduce the noise up to 5 decibels. That’s something a human ear can hear as a significant difference.

It’s very important to note that not all the windows can be made as multi-layered. If this option sounds attractive, look for manufactures which are specialized in making such windows.

Benefits of noise blocking window film

As you can see, this surely is an interesting mechanism for noise reduction. Making the world a bit quieter place gives each one of us much needed peace. Here's why noise blocking window film is an excellent solution:

  • Reduces the noise significantly.
  • Gives more privacy.
  • Can be used with different types of glass.
  • Some of them are thermally efficient.
  • It’s perfect for offices and meeting rooms.

Of course, these positive sides are more or less general. When one decides whether noise blocking window film is the solution he/she needs, few aspects should be considered:

  • Budget
  • Number of windows you want to treat
  • The level of noise you want to reduce

The amazing science behind noise blocking film

Some people decided to push the limits and make this already fantastic invention even more outstanding.

A group of scientists in Singapore, I may freely say, made the pure art out of noise blocking film for windows. Their idea was to create a transparent film which will not only block undesired noise but play music as well. That’s right! You will not only eliminate the nerve-wracking sounds but you get to enjoy the most relaxing music.

This window film is made of polymer strengthened with transparent lamination. It uses the same principle as noise-canceling headphones. This means that the film moves in response to changes in electrical voltage.

do-noise-cancelling-headphones-damage-hearing

However, there’s even more than this. There are two layers of windows in staggered position and their task is to channel the outdoors noise. The noise goes through a short passageway between the layers and before it gets into the room, the speakers lining the window “destroy” the noise.

This means that the window can remain open. It’s a significant breakthrough, particularly during warm summer days!

An innovative technology like this is indeed promising. It’s not only technically innovative and superb but financially acceptable. The scientists are so far worried that perhaps it will be a bit difficult for people to accept it, as this window is a bit complicated than the normal one.

Cost to Soundproof a Window

However, when things are practical such as this one is, and above all- when they solve the issue, accepting them shouldn’t be a problem!

The importance of STC ratings

If you are already into soundproofing tips and tricks (after all, you are reading this), you have surely seen STC ratings mentioning rather often. What is it about?

Simply put, Sound Transmission Class (STC for short) is used to determine the ability of a certain material to reduce the sound waves. Materials with high STC can block more sound.

Why do I mention this here? Believe it or not, a window is where the noise comes through the most, so it is of vital importance to be familiar with STC ratings for materials the window’s made of.

Moreover, find out at least the approximate values of materials you are planning to use for soundproofing windows. And finally, doors, walls, etc, they all have some STC rating, and it’s important to take them into consideration as well.

stc ratings for windows

Only when you know all these, will you be able to determine how useful will certain material be, and what to expect from it.

Alternative solutions for soundproofing windows

When you start looking for different ways of soundproofing a window, you will see that solutions are numerous. They differ in price and materials used. Some of them are more some less aesthetically appealing.

Noise blocking window film is an excellent thing, however, it may be a bit pricey.

If you want to find the most appropriate solution both in terms of money and the specific way to soundproof a window, you need to answer a few questions:

  • What’s the frequency of the sound I am trying to eliminate/reduce?
  • Do I need to soundproof only one or multiple windows?
  • How much money am I willing to spend?
  • Am I going to have it done by professional or by myself?

Once you answer them, you will definitely be a step closer to finding the right solution. Mind the aspect of aesthetics. Some solution may compromise the elegance of your space, and that’s not what you want. You want both things to be balanced, to work in harmony.

double pane windows

Here I shall list you a few more ideas to have in mind:

  • Use noise reduction curtains
  • Seal all the gaps in your window
  • Replace the windows completely
  • Use acoustic foam
  • Install external storm windows

Final Word: On Noise Blocking Window Film

Whatever does the job in reducing the annoying noise, I say, try it, it’s worth it!

As we all live too fast, surrounded by constant noise, having it silenced even a bit means a lot. And if your budget allows you so, you can even enjoy having that amazing discovery - a window which blocks the unpleasant sounds and plays music!

A noise blocking window film is really a great thing. Is it the right one for you, see for yourself. Not all of us have the same problems regarding noise, therefore different things work for us.

Have you had any experiences with this? Share them if so!