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Spray Foam Insulation

Difference Between Soundproofing And Sound Absorption


When you think about it, there are many similarities between sound and water. One can even say the sound is a lot like water. Same as water, sound doesn’t have a shape or form.

Sound shapes and moulds itself to its surroundings, and can be absorbed by some materials, or contained by others.

Nowadays, whenever you have a noise problem, your initial reaction is to search the internet for soundproofing and sound absorption solutions. But what is the essential difference between soundproofing and sound absorption? We have the answer, and we’re here to share it in the following article…

So, What is the difference between soundproofing and sound absorption

Whether you want to keep the sound in your room, or keep the sound out of your space completely, you need to understand the essential difference between both tactics, and install a solution accordingly.

The simplest way to describe the difference between soundproofing and sound absorption is that one blocks or stops the sound, and the other absorbs echo within a room.

What Is Sound Absorption?

For sound absorbing, products are usually designed to be soft, light, and fluffy. The goal is to soften up the surface within the room, and reduce the echo in that space with immediate effect.

Controlling noise through absorption is an effective way for lessening the echo and noise within your space. Usually, people end up with a sound absorption solution, even though they wanted a soundproofing solution.

One way to visually explain the difference between soundproofing and sound absorption is with a wall. Let’s say you have a wall between two rooms.

You’ve installed sound absorption material on both sides of the wall. And you and your colleague stand on opposite sides of the wall. If you start talking, you will be able to hear yourself. Remember the visual example, we will use it for soundproofing as well.

What Is Soundproofing?

Blocking sound, or soundproofing, on the other hand, is a more advanced method of preventing noise. Materials used for soundproofing stop the sound from entering or leaving the room completely. These materials are solid and heavy.

In some cases, soundproofing is a more suitable method of blocking noise. For example, theatres, cinemas, and TV or radio studios need to block unwanted sound from entering or leaving the room.

Sometimes, people need to create an acoustic environment and completely block sound from travelling from one room to another. Sound absorption will not help with that.

In the example with the wall, instead of sound absorbing materials, you install soundproofing materials. Now, you can yell if you want, but there is no way you or your colleague can hear each other.

Quick Summary

To summarise the main difference between soundproofing and sound absorption, we have to look at the overall goals for each one in turn:

The goal of soundproofing is to prevent external noise from entering the room, and keep internal sounds contained.

The goal of sound absorption is to reduce the effects of sound waves. In more technical words, you prevent the sound from switching from one side to the other, without creating reverberation.


With spray foam, you can enjoy the convenience of a house you call home. And the best part is, spray foam can be applied to different areas, and at different thicknesses, depending on the needs of the project

How Spray Foam Helps With Soundproofing

We mentioned previously that most people wind up with sound absorption solution when they wanted a soundproof. Now that we know the difference between soundproofing and sound absorption, let’s take a look at the best option for a soundproofing solution.

Open cell spray foam delivers high levels of sound insulation blocking both airborne and flanking noise. This includes music, telephone calls, conversations, outside traffic, train tracks, aeroplanes, and similar noise pollutants that are eliminated.

With spray foam, you can enjoy the convenience of a house you call home. And the best part is, spray foam can be applied to different areas, and at different thicknesses, depending on the needs of the project.

A case study backs up the claim that spray foam can effectively prevent sound from outside.

What is noise and why you need a soundproof solution?

With all the talk about the difference between soundproofing and sound absorption, we also need to talk about the root of the problem. And that is what is noise and how it can compromise your comfort.

Noise is part of our everyday life. Noise can come from all around you. In other words, noise is a way of communication between humans, animals, and everything in between. Sometimes, the noise comes in the form of alarms and shouting.

Noise pollution can cause a number of health problems. For starters, noise pollution will disrupt your sleep patterns, and in some cases, cause insomnia. As a result, you will suffer from a high amount of stress in your life, and stress leads to a number of other problems.

Another health issue caused by sound pollution is increased risk of cardiovascular diseases. And of course, constant exposure to noise pollution will eventually reduce your ability to hear properly.

6 Brilliant Benefits Of Soundproofing Spray Foam

  1. Absorbs 40% of the sound transmitted through air
  2. Prevents noise from clubs and pubs from entering your home
  3. Prevents machinery noise from industrial buildings
  4. Prevents animal noise from agricultural buildings
  5. In addition to preventing noise, spray foam also improves thermal efficiency of your home
  6. Best of all, spray foam is easy to apply and install to any surface; even in hard to reach places

Noise niggles driving you to distraction? We hear you, and we’re here to help! Simply call 0800 1700 636, or click the button below to start soundproofing your home today!