In this blog post, we will talk about “how to soundproof a fridge”, soundproofing a fridge, and how to differentiate between different noises of a fridge. We will also discuss 7 creative tricks to soundproof a fridge.
How To Soundproof a Fridge?
Soundproofing a fridge can be made easy if you know these 7 creative ways to do so;
- Balance the Fridge
- Place a Mat underneath
- Put the Fridge in an Alcove
- Soundproof the Backward Wall
- Soundproof Fridge’s Inside
- Reduce Compressor’s Noise
Different Types of Noise in Fridge
The most important thing is to identify the noise source in a fridge to solve the noise problem. A fridge normally does creates a sound and this usually comes from the compressor. The sound of the compressor can range between 32 to 47 dB.
However, not all fridge noises are okay and some are also a cause for concern. Let’s breakdown different noises of a fridge and where they come from;
The most common noise in the fridge is the vibration noise. We all know the fridge vibrates but this gets amplified when the fridge is not placed on a level surface.
Besides this, this vibration noise also gets intensified if the fridge is in contact with the surrounding walls or any other object. It is always best to make sure no trolley, wall, or shelf is in contact with the refrigerator.
Hissing Sound or Dripping Noise
This is a normal sound that comes from refrigerant flow or oil compressor flow. It is usually not particularly loud but can be amplified at certain times or due to an ongoing issue.
Water-Running or Gurgling Noise
During the refrigerator defrosting cycle, ice tends to melt and this makes a slight water-running or gurgling noise.
Clicking or Buzzing Noise
Clicking or buzzing noise usually comes from the valves in the fridge. There are two kinds of valves in a fridge; Water valves and evaporator valves.
This sound generates when the water valves in the fridge open or close. Buzzing noise is also produced when evaporator valves operate to regulate the cooling.
Whirring and Pulsating Noise
This is the normal sound of a fridge’s compressor and can be heard 80% of the time. The compressor doesn’t run continuously and switches on and off as per the operational need.
The refrigerator’s inside walls tend to contracts or expand with time and this may produce popping noise.
Other Fridge Noises
You may also hear clattering, grinding, creaking, or cracking noises from a fridge. These are usually not a serious cause of concern until they exceed beyond a normal level.
These aren’t incredibly loud noises but can disturb your peace and make it difficult to relax. The best way to cancel or minimize these sounds is to use simple and creative soundproofing techniques.
7 Creative Ways to Soundproof a Fridge
Balance the Fridge
There are many moving parts in the fridge from a fan to a compressor and many more. These moving parts create vibrations and these vibrations get amplified if your fridge is placed at an imbalance surface.
Leveling the fridge holds pivotal importance if you want to stop it from making any extra noise. A properly leveled fridge also improves its functionality and life.
Even a single misplaced leg can cause it to vibrate vigorously and make unnecessary noise. Furthermore, these vibrations aren’t harmless and can disrupt the operations of the fridge in the long run.
Most modern fridges have adjustable legs that can be lengthened or shortened as per your needs. Sometimes, floorings aren’t completely leveled, and adjusting the fridge legs appropriately can help you minimize annoying vibration noise.
Placing a Mat Underneath the Fridge
If balancing legs doesn’t fix the problem and minimize vibration sounds then you probably need to get a mat. Placing a mat underneath the fridge is one quick, effective, and cheap fix to soundproof your refrigerator.
There are special mats designed for this purpose and these are usually a little thicker than a normal rug. There are many colors, types, and quality fridge mat available online and you can easily choose one that suits your needs the best.
Some floorings are bad at absorbing sounds and often act as an amplifier. They enhance the intensity of the noise and make it seems the fridge is overworking.
A hardwood floor is one prime example of flooring that amplifies the fridge’s vibration sound. You certainly need a soundproof mat if you have a hardwood floor to prevent the fridge from rattling and making extra noise. These mats also minimize the sounds from the fridge’s compressor and fan.
Put the Fridge in an Alcove
If you have already tried leveling the fridge and placing a mat and aren’t still satisfied with the sound level then your best bet is to relocate the fridge.
A good solution to this sound problem is to place the fridge in a location where there’s natural soundproofing. An alcove is an excellent location to place it
Some homes have built-in alcoves and small places for appliances. This will do nothing more than distancing you from the sound source but is still worth it.
Alcoves are built to trap sounds and stop them from escaping to the rest of the house. So, placing a fridge in an alcove is worth a shot if you have one.
Soundproof The Fridge’s Backwall
Relocating the fridge is usually not possible and your best to minimize the sound is to use soundproofing. In terms of the fridge, minimizing the sound at its source is not possible but we can cut it down before it reaches the other rooms.
Using acoustic or soundproof panels at the back wall of the fridge is an effective way to absorb the majority of the fridge’s noise. These panels absorb the vibration and effectively soundproof the fridge.
Covering the wall behind the fridge is an ingenious way to stop the fridge’s sound from echoing or bouncing off the walls. Make sure to leave more than 3 inches at the back as placing the fridge too close to the wall will overheat it.
For better sound insulation, you can also wrap these around the edges of the fridge. Textured Rockwool is a popular soundproofing solution for minimizing the fridge’s noise.
Clean the Fans and the Condenser
The fridge’s fan and the condenser are where the main sounds come from. A well-maintained fridge makes relatively fewer sounds than ones with dirty fans and clogged-up ice maker.
Giving the fridge a thorough cleanup usually does the trick and cuts down a lot of noise. You can easily clean the fridge in 6 simple steps;
- Unplug the Fridge
- Rest it against the wall for support
- Clean the fridge with a cloth and fans with a paper towel
- Empty the ice bin and scrub the ice maker with a toothbrush
- Spot and remove jammed pieces of ice
- Take the fridge back to its place
Soundproof the Inside of the Fridge
Soundproofing the fridge’s inside is not a bad option as most of the annoying sounds come from there. To many, this is the perfect solution that helps cuts down the fridge’s sound.
As for the soundproofing product, mass-loaded vinyl is what you need to effectively soundproof a fridge. Despite having high mass and good density, MLV is incredibly flexible and thin.
The thin layers of MLV can be easily glued to the fridge’s inside and it takes up around an inch of space on all four sides. Here’s how you can soundproof your fridge with MLV;
- Turn off the refrigerator and let it defrost
- Empty the fridge, remove all shelves, and clean the inside
- Measure the back, top, bottom, and sides of the fridge
- Cut 5 pieces of mass loaded vinyl in the desired size
- Stick the pieces with glue
- Make sure not to cover the drip tray hole or shelves’ grooves
- Refix the shelves and turn on the fridge
Try to make the Compressor Less Noisy
The majority of the sound in a fridge comes from the compressor. Even the quietest compressor does make some sounds and these sounds can then be amplified by the surroundings.
However, there are some cool tricks to quiet down the compressor’s noise and soundproof the fridge. The first thing you can do is place rubber on the compressors’ motor.
Rubber is a natural insulator and it simultaneously absorbs and dampens the sound. Using a rubber at the compressor’s motor can minimize the sound at its source.
Besides this, you can also try a sound deadening mat to wrap the parts of the motor that vibrates the most and make the most sound. This is an effective trick to soundproof a fridge’s compressor and can help you minimize the overall fridge sound.
In this blog post, we talked about soundproofing a fridge and how to differentiate between different noises of a fridge. We also discussed 7 creative and cool ways to soundproof a fridge.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): How to Soundproof a Fridge?
How do I quiet a noisy refrigerator?
- Level the legs and keep the fridge balanced
- Place the fridge on a mat
- Soundproof the wall behind the fridge
- Place the fridge in an alcove
- Construct a shelving unit next to the fridge
- Regularly clean fan and condenser
- Place soundproofing materials inside the fridge
Why is my fridge making a loud humming noise?
The fridge usually makes a loud humming noise when the condenser coils get clogged up with dust. This makes the fridge do extra work to keep it cool and that’s where the loud humming noise comes from. This noise is also a warning sign that you need to clean up your fridge before it causes any further problems.
How can I soundproof my appliances?
The most effective way to soundproof or insulate appliances is by adding MLV paddings on the fridge legs. Sound needs a pathway to transmit and diffuse.
Using decoupling techniques by adding padding between the fridge legs and flooring is an effective way to soundproof appliances. Furthermore, always try to make sure that appliances are not in contact with the walls as it intensifies the sound.
How many decibels is a refrigerator?
Modern fridges are anywhere between 32 decibels and 47 decibels. Decibels or dB is a unit to measure sounds.
Is It Normal for Fridge to Make Noise?
Yes, it is normal for the fridge to make a sound. This sound comes from the fridge’s compressor and it runs about 80% of the time. The compressor switches on and off automatically to regulate the temperature.