Currently I'm living in an apartment that has poor soundproofing. My upstairs neighbors get up at 4:30 am to go to work. They have two dogs. So there's a lot of noise between 4:30 am and 5 am. Like any sane person, I don't want to wake up at 4:30 am.

I've had many issues with noise in this apartment so I'd like to solve the issue at the source.

Is there an effective way to soundproof a ceiling that's not permanent? Inexpensive would be great too. I'd like to put less than $200 into the whole endeavor if possible.

  • I hate to say it, but the solutions are going to be stop-gap as best. Have you considered sleeping with ear plugs? It could suck, but is cheap to try... Feb 9 '11 at 18:06
  • @Alex: already doing that
    – jcollum
    Feb 9 '11 at 19:55
  • Look into your apartment contract ... I once had one that required tenants to have a run that covered 80% of the floor ... of course, no one did. But it's easier to slow the noise from above than below in this case.
    – Joe
    Sep 1 '11 at 19:12
  • 2
    Solving the issue at the source would involve talking to your neighbors about the noise. Sep 6 '11 at 2:52

Ridged foam insulation might work here. It comes in large pieces and is lightweight enough that it won't take many fasteners to hold it up (so you'll have less nail holes to fill when you leave). The downside of course is that it isn't very pretty.

  • Another solution might be, gray foam eggcrate, much like they use in recording studios. Turn them backwards against the ceiling in keep noise out of your room instead of in your room. Never used it before, but that's my educated guess-timate.
    – joshmax
    Oct 27 '11 at 19:34
  • The down side is when your ceiling is on fire and dripping napalm on you.
    – Mazura
    Feb 8 '20 at 3:55

You need to put up a layer of sound absorbent material between you and the source of the sound.

A permanent solution would be to add a false ceiling of "sound proof" plasterboard with possibly additional sound absorbing material between it and the real ceiling. However, this isn't suitable in this case.

The only non-permanent thing I can think of is that you attach some reasonably heavy duty material (curtain or blanket type) to the ceiling. You'd still might need to attach some form of battens to the ceiling to anchor the material though.


First find out the areas that are the most noisy, then you can think about investing money on soundproofing. Better solution is, put down area rugs in your highly trafficked surrounding.

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