5 Cheap and Easy Methods to Sound and Light Proof Any Bedroom


Living with roommates in a house/apartment that isn’t particularly well-constructed is kind of an inevitable part of renting. The major upside is that you save a ton of money on rent, but the downside is that all roommates like to time their loud music and door slamming to coincide perfectly with that moment right before you fall asleep. While you can’t control what they do there are a few things you can adjust in your own room that will help make any bedroom a place where you can easily fall asleep.

1. Thin walls

Your walls are thin, and the noise levels in the house are high. No matter how many times you ask, your roommates insist on slamming the microwave at 3:00 a.m. and blending their morning smoothie at 7:00 a.m.

Solution: There are a lot of things you can do here! First of all, if your bed is against the wall that’s adjacent to noisy areas move it immediately. Next, put up shelves and other furniture on/against that wall, which will muffle all incoming sound before it gets to you. Finally, you can lay down cheap area rugs outside your door and wall, which will muffle any foot traffic outside your door if you have a roommate who likes to stomp around in the middle of the night, 

2. You have a rattling door

Your door rattles when someone else in the house shuts a different door loudly. This happens when the door doesn’t fit perfectly in the frame, and makes a loud banging right near you that’s almost impossible to ignore.

Solution: Stick a t-shirt in the door frame. Seriously. Fold over any t-shirt once and close the door with it between the door and the frame, and your door will stop trying to explode out of its frame every time someone else in the house uses a different door.

3. Unwanted lighting

Your bedroom door faces a hallway with a bright light that gets turned on and off at really inconvenient times, and the light leaking in either wakes you up or keeps you from falling asleep at all.

Solution: The first step here is to get two cheap hooks that you’d normally use to hang keys on, which you can find at any Walmart. Attach those hooks on your wall a couple of inches above and to the sides of the corners of your door. Next, take an old blanket of reasonable thickness (we don’t recommend a normal sheet, as that will be too thin to effectively block light) and cut holes in it that will let you hang it from the bedroom door. Finally, take a storage bin or other tall basket and push it against the door to keep the bottom portion of the blanket in place. No more light issues!

4. Light and noise leaks from your window

Light and noise leaks in from your window, but you don’t have power tools necessary to install a sturdy rod and/or your landlord won’t let you put one up.

Solution: Look for a good tension rod that will let you put up thick curtains without having to drill any holes or do any annoying construction work. You can also cut out sheets of foam you’d find at any craft store to fit your windows, which might look a little strange from the outside but would serve to help block both light and noise.

5. You’re noise sensitive and can’t sleep

Despite all this great advice, you’re extremely noise sensitive and still having trouble sleeping. Is there anything else that you can do or are you just doomed to never sleep again?

Solution: Start training yourself to be able to sleep with earplugs in and white noise going. Any ear plugs from your corner store will do, though we do recommend picking different ones based on whether you have larger or smaller ears. A small fan going on high combined with a free noise app will drown out just about any sound that might leak in, and the earplugs will keep you from hearing most of the noise that’s being generated.

A great free app for sleeping noise is “Sleep and Noise Sounds,” it lets you choose from several different kinds of noise. We found that pink noise generally works better than white noise at keeping out intrusive sound, but feel free to experiment and find what works for you.

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