Soundproof Windows

lindalouokApril 7, 2012

I'd like to know people's experience with soundproof windows and the brands they used. I want to install soundproof windows to keep out the sounds of barking dogs, loud mufflers, and the highway that is 500 feet from my home. I have looked at the Citiquiet and Soundproof Windows sites.

I am looking for actual experience so that I can decide whether to make this huge investment and on what brand or type of window. Please list the brand you have used.

If you wish to speculate about soundproofing, please start another thread, as I am interested only in actual experience. Thanks so much.

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EcoStarRemodel

Since you are looking for anecdotal experiences, I won't comment. However, you would be well served to understand the science behind sound-proof windows. I would suggest you start by understanding what OITC and STC mean. From there, you can determine the different wavelengths of sound and if the windows you are considering will filter those particular frequencies. Might want to also learn about laminated glass and the effects that .30, .60 and .90 mil have on sound transmissions. Oh, you might also want to learn what installation techniques will result in the lowest sound transmissions.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 10:20AM
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windowsonwashington

What are your existing windows like?

I have used the QuietLine from Milgard with very good results.

You may also be a candidate for a good interior or exterior storm window.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2012 at 7:45PM
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toddinmn

Also remember the window is only as good as the wall you are putting it into.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 12:35AM
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SJ2012

Hi. I live in San Diego and had Sound Proof Windows.com install a window in my bedroom which is 50 feet from a busy street - 4 months ago.

Overall, I would say I am happy with them. It does definitely reduce the noise that is coming from the street. It is not 100% quiet or even 90% quiet - I would say these windows reduced my outside noise by 75%. That still was a very welcome reduction. They do a great job of reducing car and bus noise - now they are more "distant" and softer sounding. Much much more manageable. Not like before where they sounded like they were in my living room. The lower sound - bass like sounds are the ones that still get through.

I dont understand why it is not illegal or against building codes to allow a house near a busy street to be "acceptable" for sale without some type of double pane windows or some type of sound wall built in front. It is remarkably unfair to a unsuspecting home buyer and very unnerving. Unbelievalbe with all the damn building codes we have in California that this is overlooked!

I went from a very normal person to someone who was very unnerved and angry due to the 24 hour a day car and bus noise.

SPW customer service was good and the guy Ryan who installed the window was great.

Overall I am happy. They should though change their name to Sound Reduction Windows and shouldn't say "eliminate your noise problem". That's not true.

I would suggest to buy them. I think you will be happy with the difference they make. The difference is not 100% quiet but it does make things more manageable. Before, I was very much on edge and simply going into my own home made me very nervous and anxious. I would actually have to sit in my closet to get peace of mind. Unbelievably lame. I made a mistake of buying a townhouse close to a busy street. First time buyer mistake. Wont ever happen again.

Anyway, I would recommend purchasing from them if you are looking to significantly reduce the street noise.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2012 at 10:29PM
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toddinmn

I agree we need more laws. I bought a house next to the fire station, sure it was quiet the day I looked at it but who wudda thought those sirens are so loud?

    Bookmark   April 11, 2012 at 11:31PM
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WindowDog

Hey, that was just mean :) lol. I lived on a busy street once and it was hell getting used to it. After a while I could sleep in with the windows open! But the in between time is nerve racking. Funny :D

    Bookmark   April 12, 2012 at 12:43AM
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toddinmn

I now have to play recordings of sirens so I can go to sleep.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2012 at 12:49AM
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WindowDog

LOL! Now that's funny no matter who you are :)

    Bookmark   April 12, 2012 at 2:14AM
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SJ2012

Bump...

Anybody else have experience with Sound Proof Windows??

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 7:50PM
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millworkman

Why do you work for them?

    Bookmark   April 17, 2012 at 8:37PM
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GulfBreezeWindows

Sound Proof Windows, is a storm window with laminated glass.

Will they help? Yes.
Can you get them some were else? Yes.
Do they fib and say new windows won't help? Yes

Decide what you need first. New windows with sound glass or impact glass will do they same as interior sound windows, but you get new windows and don't have to open 2 layers of windows to get to the outside.

If you windows are good and you don't want to replace them, then interior or exterior storms with laminated glass will be the answer.

Good Luck.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 10:58AM
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windowsonwashington

Great post Andrew.

Dead right on all accounts.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 11:38AM
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SJ2012

Millworkman,

No, I dont work for them. Simply looking to get feed back.

    Bookmark   April 18, 2012 at 2:28PM
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DanEdwards

I live in Central California. I purchased two windows from Sound Proof Windows. They HELP - but I agree with above - they DO NOT eliminate your noise problem.

That is what it says when you google their site "Sound Proof Windows - Eliminate your noise problem".

100% NOT TRUE.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 8:38PM
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toddinmn

Storms can be better due to the air space between the windows.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 8:44PM
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WindowDog

Any double pane or triple pane window will eliminate most outside noise unless there is a train crossing on your block.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 9:35PM
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toddinmn

Most noise other than a train is pretty vague.If you have storms you may reduce your STC rating by replacing the window.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 1:37AM
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WindowDog

There is not a lot of vague between most noise and a train crossing. The reference is from a customer I talked to that complained that their windows weren't very quiet. I asked them what they could hear through the windows, and it was the train crossing 1 block away. Other than that, they could hear nothing through them.

So since a double or triple pane window is effective with blocking sound, I'm not sure what the difference is with the "sound proof windows" company, when people say they are not completely sound proof either. I would suggest that someone wanting to block the sound of traffic on their street would benefit from a triple pane vinyl window, very much so.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 12:23PM
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windowsonwashington

Depends on the level of noise and customer sensitivity to it.

Triple pane has not impact on sound attenuation in this case and can often times have a lesser STC than good double pane.

Best bang for the buck in a replacement window is going to be laminated glass.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 3:11PM
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toddinmn

I guess if you're going to only reference one customer I'm sure you're right.
They could only here the train 1 block away and nothing else? That is the best one I heard today. I think traffic noise would be between a train and vague?

    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 11:42PM
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WindowDog

toddinmn, i'm not sure what your point is. I'm quite aware that double and triple pane windows drastically reduce sound. In fact, many many times that's the first thing out of a customer's mouth, "I can't believe how quiet these windows are!". I have heard one (1) complaint about noise transmittance in over 35 yrs in the window business, and it was a customer than lived next to the train crossing. I concede that high traffic is noisy at varying degrees... but your point is what? That my contribution to this discussion is stupid? Or what? MOST noise will be drastically reduced or eliminated with double or triple pain windows, unless you live next to a train crossing. Train whistles are insanely loud. Again, what is your point in arguing with me over something so obvious? I do not have an argument to make, only experience to share. Please stick to stating your own opinions to the OP, and don't troll the thread.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 12:42AM
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toddinmn

My point is your posts could be very misleading.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 1:32AM
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windowsonwashington

Most customers will note a decrease in sound with new replacement windows. This very impression was voiced to me last night.

This is due in large part to the heavier thickness glass in most replacement windows and the often overlooked air tightness improvements with the new windows (sound is carried on air).

Be careful with the idea that all replacement windows will reduce sound as a standard. I have personally dealt with a situation where the customer had complaints about noise living very close to a major road and had a single pane/storm window combination.

In a majority of cases, a new replacement window will be an improvement, however, what was unknown to the salesperson in this case is that the storm window here was a very heavy gauge thickness and that original combination provided a better overall STC than the new windows did.

If the customer is concerned, the best upgrade in a standard replacement window is laminated glass.

As mentioned previously, triple pane provides no advantage (often lessened performance vs. good double pane) over double pane windows.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 8:04AM
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lindalouok

Thanks to SJ2012 for your honest and specific comments, which were exactly what I wanted to hear (for some reason, I was never notified that anyone had responded to this thread, which is why I haven't been back earlier).

Someone suggested just replacing the windows with new laminated glass ones. The thing about that is, with 2 sets of windows, you are getting a double barrier, and I know that Soundproof Windows' STC ratings are based on having the window OVER another window. The sound reduction will be markedly less without the extra windows, as a simple double-pane window has an STC of 26. With the Soundproof Window added, your STC rises to 36.

That said, I am very concerned about mold problems. My windows get tons of condesntation on them in the winter and spring, and the result is mold, not to mention the screws of these supposed lifetime windows rotting out (the company that made them is of course out of business). If I have 2 sets of windows, I am thinking that the condensation will form on my original window, and I am going to have a heckuva time getting rid of it.

Which leads to anothe question--with double-hung windows, how do you actually open both?

I would very much like to hear more from EcoStarRemodel about the thicknesses and about installation. I am also curious about the impact of different materials for the frame.

GulfBreezeWindows, can you also say a bit more about what sort of windows I should look for?

I have double-pane windows. Yes, they reduce sound. But when you live next to a busy highway, you need a lot more! I have experimented with closing the windows to my truck, then opening them. The sound reduction is phenomenal, and far beyond any house window I have encountered. The reason--the lamination!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 7:06PM
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