10 Tips to Control Noise While Working at Home

10 Tips to Control Noise While Working at Home image
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Noise controlling tips to help combat the daily challenges with working from home and help you to work more productively. 

Unless you have a dedicated working space with soundproof walls, chances are you have been subjected to distracting noises while working from home over the past year. Whether from your pets, kids, or neighbors, these interruptions compounded with daily stress can often hinder your productivity.  

As many continue to work remotely indefinitely, the Institute of Noise Control Engineering of the USA (INCE-USA), the leading authority on noise control in the U.S., aggregated helpful tips from their members on how to control the noise level in the home office. These varied and inexpensive noise reduction tips may help you create a quiet home office and enhance your productivity.

1. Invest in headphones.

Especially if there are multiple people working in the home, ditching your laptop mic and speakers can be helpful if there are several people on calls.

2. Add absorptive materials to your workspaces.

This can be anything from stuffed couches to thick curtains and pillows.

3. Add rugs to highly trafficked areas in your space.

Rugs provide for even more acoustical absorption.

4. Take time to go into a “silent” space.

Moving into a quiet place throughout the day introduces a calming effect on the brain, which will allow you to focus on the tasks at hand.

5. Set your office up on the opposite side of your major noise source.

If you have kids at home, try to keep space between you and their screens.

6. Seal your doors tightly.

Rolled towels at the bottom of your door can work well.

7. Invest in a white noise machine.

These machines block out environmental noise, and may also calm you and help you focus. Some noise-canceling headphones also play white noise such as waves crashing, rain, or streams.

8. Make sure your appliances are up-to-date and well maintained.

A lack of maintenance could be the reason why your dishwasher sounds louder.

9. Incorporate weather stripping and draft stoppers on your doors and windows.

This will help create more acoustical privacy and reduce distractions from outside of your home.

10.Remove your visual access to the source of unwanted background noise.

Not being able to see the distraction can help with your perception and concentration.

While you cannot always control the various noise factors that coincidentally seems to increase during your most important Zoom calls, you can control how you manage the noise. We hope these noise controlling tips help combat the daily challenges with working from home and help you to work more efficiently.


To learn about more tips for working remotely and how the FCS team has transitioned to working from home, check out our blog HERE.

About the author

Phil Ault

Phil Ault thumbnail

Phil has over ten years of experience in noise and air quality environmental impact analysis, and prepares stand-alone noise and air quality studies, as well as studies in compliance with CEQA and NEPA requirements. Phil has conducted extensive research in environmental and energy topics, including energy efficient project design, sizing of wind and solar PV hybrid generator systems, and project greenhouse gas emission impacts related to global climate change. He has also conducted extensive research into LEED for Neighborhood Developments, a tool developed by the U.S. Green Building Council as a standard for sustainable community design and development, and how such tools can blend with CEQA requirements.

Phil leads the air quality and noise impact assessment team for FCS and manages the Fresno office.

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