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Industry Trends

Reducing Noise Pollution at Home

4 min read

Cities like Joliet come with plenty of conveniences: easy access to shopping, entertainment and plenty of local events. The downside to living in even a small city is the accompanying noise. It’s an inevitable part of living close to others, but you can take steps to leave noise pollution at your doorstep. Keep reading if you want solutions for living life at your preferred volume. 

Understanding Noise Pollution

Noise pollution is sound that exceeds 65 decibels. While not harmful at this level, it’s still intrusive and can disrupt the peace of day-to-day activities inside your home. Noise pollution can be caused by anything from traffic to construction sounds. These may seem harmless, but continued exposure to noise pollution can worsen your health and well-being. Poor sleep habits and increased stress are common reactions, but noise pollution is even linked to an increase in cardiovascular events. Taking preventative steps to lower your exposure through soundproofing is your best bet for a healthy, happy household. 

To understand soundproofing measures, you have to understand Sound Transmission Classes or STC ratings. These ratings are an agreed-upon system that measures a construction piece’s effectiveness at reducing sound transmission. The higher the number, the more effective the material is at soundproofing your home. You’ll learn about the STC ratings of single-, double- and triple-pane windows below. 

Federal and Local Standards on Soundproofing

The US has standards in place to protect households against excessive noise through the Noise Control Act of 1972, though it has been unfunded since the 1980s and left to state and local governments to create individual ordinances. The Illinois EPA includes state-level noise provisions and regulations for local governments, including Joliet’s, to follow. Joliet’s city ordinances include the Noise Pollution Control Ordinance, which directly defines different types of noise pollution (such as construction and older cars) and penalties for violating the ordinance. 

Do Single-Pane Windows Hold Up to Noise?

Single-pane windows are usually only found in older homes at this point since modern homes generally include double-paned windows as a standard feature. If you’re unsure if your windows are single-paned, hold a light up to the window. If you see only a single reflection, it’s single-paned. Noise reduction is minimal with single panes, with an STC rating of about 18. Single-pane windows are not particularly effective at blocking outside noises. There’s no extra barrier between your home and the outdoors, meaning virtually every outdoor sound easily travels inside your home.

Benefits of Double-Pane and Triple-Pane Windows

Window seat features double hung window.

Double-paned windows are common in modern homes or those with quality window replacements. Learn more below about the benefits you’ll see with double-paned windows, and how triple-paned windows build on that foundation. 

Double-Pane Windows

Triple-Pane Windows

Between the Panes: Argon Gas Inserts

The argon gas found between the panes in double- and triple-pane windows brings major benefits to your home. Argon is a colorless, odorless gas with high density that insulates your windows. It also has very low thermal conductivity, so outdoor temperatures won’t impact the inside of your home. 

Additional Strategies for Noise Reduction

house exterior with stone siding

With double- or triple-pane windows, you should immediately notice a decrease in outside noise levels. However, there are a few other easy ways to aid in peace and quiet inside your home. 

Invest in Peace of Mind with Window World

If you live in a noisy area, you know exactly how much outside noise can affect your day-to-day life. Take the needed steps to protect your well-being—double- or triple-pane windows will counteract the worst of the noise pollution and prove a smart, energy-efficient upgrade you’ll appreciate for years to come. Get in touch with us today for your free quote