What Types of Windows Are Soundproof?

When you’re looking at upgrading or replacing your windows, you have many options, including single glazed, double glazed, impact windows and soundproof windows. If your primary concern is blocking neighborhood noise, let’s see how these selections stack up.

Are Double Glazed Windows Soundproof?

No, double glazed (or double pane) windows are not soundproof. While they do stop more sound than single glazed windows, they don’t block as much as soundproof window inserts.

Usually single glazed (or single pane) windows have an STC rating of 26 to 28,and double pane windows have an STC rating of 26 to 32. This means you can easily hear loud talking through the window.

STC ratings (which stand for Sound Transmission Class ratings) are an objective way to measure how much sound an object blocks. The higher the number, the more sound the object stops.

Double pane windows have two layers of glass with an air gap in between them so they block more sound than single pane windows. Thicker windows, in addition, to stopping more sound, also provide more insulation because they have more mass.

Are Impact Windows Soundproof?

No, impact windows are not soundproof. An impact window has an STC rating of 32 to 35.

Impact windows, or hurricane impact windows, are designed to withstand storms, high winds or falling objects and to stay intact without spraying shards even if they break. They’re usually made of two pieces of tempered or laminated glass held together with a plastic membrane made of polyvinyl butyral. They also have frames generally constructed from heavy-duty materials such as aluminum or vinyl, and they’re more strongly affixed to the glass with a silicone glazing process.

Impact windows also provide more insulation than single pane windows.

Install Soundproof Window Inserts to Stop the Noise

Our soundproof window inserts have an STC rating of 42 if you currently have single pane windows and 48 if you have double pane windows.

While STC rating increases may seem small, each increase of 10 in an STC rating halves the sound. With an STC rating of 48, loud speech is largely inaudible.

The laminated glass we use for our soundproof window inserts is made from two 1/8-inch thick pieces of annealed glass, held together with a flexible adhesive membrane. The flexible membrane keeps the glass from vibrating with sound waves, and the greater mass of the glass helps absorb and block sound.

When we install these soundproof window inserts, we place them about two inches away from your existing windows to make sure we create a sufficient sound trap. We also ensure that we make a good seal to block sound waves. Together with the higher mass of the windows, the solid seal and the air gap mean that we block as much sound as possible.

Our windows block noise from street traffic, airplanes, construction, lawn equipment, loud music and air-conditioning units so you can enjoy quiet in your home. Unlike impact windows, they don’t change the look of your home (and are approved for historic houses), and we can usually install them in just a day with no mess.

Talk to us about getting a free quote for your windows in any shape and size.