I have a 10'x10' room in my garage that I use as a drum set practice room. I've been sealing it up better to provide some sound proofing. The sealing is not extreme, but I have an exterior door (like a front door) with no blatant air gaps, and there are no vents into the room. I don't want normal vents because the sound will pour out. There is also a normal, but quality window.

My question is whether I need be concerned about the lack of ventilation if the longest I'll ever be in there is 2-3 hours without opening the door. I'm not asking about building code, but whether a person could actually use up too much oxygen relative to what will seep in through the gaps in the windows and doors?

I know I can make a project out of building a muffled ventilation path, but want to avoid that work if not really necessary.

  • 1
    I’d worry more about smells after 2-3 hours of “working out” on drums than lack of oxygen.
    – Lee Sam
    Jan 20, 2019 at 16:43
  • You've got power, at least for a light? Since you're not doing a hermetic seal, I'd buy a 4" computer fan, 12volt, a suitable wall wart, and some dryer hose. Those fans run about 100cfm, so a 10X10X10' room per hour. Attach fan to dryer hose, and vent out window or wall. Put bug mesh over the hole, and be sure fan is higher than hole, it wouldn't do to have rain coming in there. a bendy hose should not let much noise out either. Jan 20, 2019 at 18:41
  • In a 10X10X8' room that'd give you roughly one turnover every 8 minutes, and use about 10 watts. Jan 21, 2019 at 8:25

2 Answers 2


This article, which looks at how long you'd survive in a 10' x 10' airlock, says you'd start to get carbon dioxide poisoning after about half a day. Then again, this discussion, which uses a 10' x 15' x 8' room for comparison, says that you'll starting having CO2 problems after six days. (Part of the discrepancy is due to the larger room size, although the size isn't different enough to account for all of it.)

These documents seem to assume a resting adult; you'll be inspiring a whole lot more oxygen, and expiring a whole lot more CO2, while drumming. However, the actual level will depend on your musical genre. If you're into acoustic jazz, you'll probably be OK; if you're a double-kick thrash metal kind of guy, you may find yourself in trouble.


Yeah, we drummers always have to worry about others complaining. We practiced in a storage building 20x20 for hours (4 guys) and we lived to play another gig. You should be okay. If you are terribly worried, just open the door or window every once in a while for a few seconds to let a bit of fresh air in.

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