Nothing ruins a sweet-sounding ride more than a trunk that vibrates and doors that rattle.
While most cars come with some sort of sound deadening from the factory, the older the car, the lower the quality of materials used for sound deadening, and with the heavy resurgence of classic and muscle cars, this becomes a sizable problem.
To solve this, companies such as Dynamat offer sound-deadening material and products to fit practically every application — The problem is that these products are very expensive.
What Is Sound Deadening Material?
Sound deadening material is often mistakenly thought of as a shield from outside noises. It should more accurately be thought of as a sound absorber, affixing itself the surface to reduce the surface’s ability to vibrate.
Imagine an empty can sitting on a table. Now imagine flicking it with your finger and the tonnnng sound it makes afterward.
Now imagine holding that can firmly in your hand and giving it the same flick.
Where before it resonated and rang, now it merely gives out a short tink. This same principle is applied to sound deadening your vehicle.
The sheet of steel that forms the outermost body of your door acts exactly the same as an empty can.
Thick tar, supported by aluminum, which together makes up the sound deadening material, act the same way your hand does around that empty can.
Instead of trying to cover up all the spaces in an attempt to block out the noise, try to find spaces in your door’s body and frame where you can turn tonnnngs into tinks.
Literally, if you tap a piece of metal and you hear a low pitch ringing, apply the material to or around it.
Most luxury vehicles already offer a light dressing of rubber on the door body to absorb road-noise, but this too degrades over time, hardening with the hot and cold cycles until it has completely set.
If your vehicle is over five years old, it has seen thousands of hot and cold cycles, so it’s probably safe to assume your factory sound absorber has cured and is, therefore, less effective if not altogether useless.
Where Sound You Install Deadening Material?
Before purchasing sound deadening, you need to break it down and choose which areas you are going to deaden and what properties each section requires.
- Doors: wind noise, mechanical rattles, and audio vibrations
- Floor: road-noise, drive-train, and thermal reduction
- Firewall: Thermal reduction, road noise, and engine noise
- Trunk: Road noise, mechanical rattles, and audio vibrations
- Rear Deck: Audio vibrations and mechanical rattles
- Roof: Wind noise and thermal reduction
DIY Budget Dynamat Alternative #1 ~ Peel & Seal
Peel & Seal is an inexpensive alternative to Dynamat and is available at most home improvement centers such as Lowe’s and Home Depot, as well as Amazon.
While this product is packaged for window and door flashing, it is essentially the same as the original Dynamat product, but a lot cheaper.
Peel & Seal is 0.045 inches thick with an adhesive rubberized asphalt sticky back, two layers of high strength polymer film over a reflective aluminum surface.
Our Experience with Peel & Seal
When we first tried this product, we were skeptical about its adhesive properties. We quickly found that this concern was unfounded.
As is always a good practice, clean the area to be sealed. We used a vacuum, compressed air, and finally a damp cloth to clean away debris and dusty residue.
With a clean surface, this product will adhere quickly and firmly.
Ensure you’ve pre-cut and fitted pieces before removing the protective backing.
Use a wallpaper seam-roller to smooth out the Peel & Seal — you’ll find that it takes the shape of where you put it.
This product was intended to be used for flashing and as a roof patch — any small holes you may have will be sealed over and will keep water out.
Consider an extra layer on areas that not only need sound deadening but thermal insulation as well, such as the firewall.
What About Durability?
We use this product on our own vehicles — the oldest project, roughly 5 1/2 years ago, was an Arizona desert truck.
The Peel & Seal has held up amazingly. In most areas, the product is still completely as adhered, and has not peeled away in any areas, including the underside of the roof and tonneau cover.
The doubled-up areas that were applied to the firewall and floor and above the exhaust also held up very well with no peeling edges or other compromises.
From the Manufacturer of Peel & Seal
Peel & Seal is a unique self-adhesive instant waterproof repair and flashing material. A super reinforced aluminum surface and rubberized asphalt adhesive that will instantly repair gutters and flashings, metal and flat roofs, RVs and mobile homes, trucks, and trailers, skylights, and anywhere leaks are a problem. Just remove release paper, and press in place for an instant permanent repair.
- Use for hundreds of repair projects
- Quickly and easily repair metal and flat roofs, gutters, flashings, skylights, trucks, trailers and anywhere leaks are a problem
- Self-adhesive for easy application
- Self-seals around fasteners
- 100% UV stable
- Made in the USA
- 10-year limited Warranty
DIY Budget Dynamat Alternative #2 ~ Frost King Duct Insulation
This product combines the properties of two popular insulating materials in one handy roll. It can be used on both heating and air-conditioning ducts, as well as on car and truck doors, hoods, trunks, and other areas.
YouTuber trucker 9000 installs Frost King Duct Insulation which works amazingly well in an automotive application as both a sound deadener and thermal insulator ~ A viable Dynamat alternative…
DIY Budget Dynamat Alternative #3 ~ Kilmat Car Sound Deadening Mat
The best price for 50 mil automotive butyl and foil sound deadening! You are not just buying an excellent quality sound deadener but also saving more than 20% comparing to Gtmat, Boom Mat, Dynamat Extreme, Hushmat, and Stinger RoadKill!
Now everyone can easily eliminate the annoying road noise in the vehicle. We’ve designed the product that pretty efficiently handles the rattle and reduces noise while being affordable to almost everyone.
Kilmat would deaden the entire car for the same money that would be enough to only insulate the doors using the expensive brands’ material.
Automotive self-adhesive insulation consists of butyl. KILMAT sound deadening has a total weight of 0.35 lbs/1sqft. This weight ensures optimum efficiency and sound insulation that could be possibly gained from 50 mil thickness material.
KILMAT 50 mil is light weighted sound deadening material!
KILMAT has a special indicator as to if it is installed correctly. The special embossing on the foil must be rolled out with a roller till it is plain smooth, then you’ll be 100% sure that the soundproofing is set correctly and professionally!
The sound dampening material comes in handy size sheets which make it easier in terms of cutting and installation process!