Q: How can I soundproof my bedroom? It has two exterior walls and shares one wall with the living room. The fourth wall is a closet. - Lee Bubb, North Charleston, SC
A: Depending on your budget and preferred degree of complexity, you can take many approaches to reducing sound transmission and increasing sound absorption. Soft materials (bedding, mattresses, upholstery, carpet, curtains) help to dampen noise within the room. A thicker carpet and pad, more pillows and sound-blocking drapes are effective additions.
Products such as resilient channels or dampening compounds installed between the wall surfaces and a second layer of 5/8-in. drywall will help to deaden sound transmission. (To take this step even further, you can first add soundproof batting or spray-in foam insulation to the interior walls.) If your door has a hollow core, replacing it with a solid-wood model would enhance soundproofing, but adding seals to the jamb and bottom of the door (see illustration) is an easier, less expensive option. - HANDY