If you plan on hosting a couple of musicians in your basement studio, prepare for the racket. Even if they promise to be quiet, there is still a high probability of noise pollution – especially if they’re drummers. But with some egg cartons and rubber mallets, you can make your small space totally soundproof!

How does it work? Egg cartons are made of compressed paper that absorbs noise rather than transmitting it like most other materials. When they are arranged in tile-like fashion (and lined up tightly), the gaps between the egg carton creates an air-tight seal which prevents sound waves from propagating further into your home.

First, you will need to obtain the egg cartons (at least 20, preferably 30 or more), and make sure they are completely dry. You can use corrugated cardboard boxes as well – again, make sure they are completely dry before you start.

Next, you will need to puncture holes in the top and side of each egg carton (about half an inch in diameter). The smaller the holes, the higher the sound absorption rate – I went with 1/2″ for this project. Then, place all the sheets in a neat row and use a rubber mallet to gently tap them together. Be sure to use a rubber mallet or you run the risk of plugging the holes from the inside out.

The soundproofed egg carton panels. I used 30 sheets for this project, and each piece measures 30″ by 4 1/4″. Once you’ve made your panels, take a corner and fold it along the horizontal axis to make a right angle. Then, take another corner and fold it along its vertical axis so that it overlaps at a 90-degree angle with first fold. After making these first two folds, you will notice that your sheet will have a Z-shaped pattern – take advantage of this natural crease by spreading out 3 other corners so that they intersect with the middle portion of the Z.

The folding pattern. When you are finished, you will have enclosed an “egg” shape within each panel. Repeat this process with all your panels, and once you’re done, stack all of them up in a giant block.

Stack ’em up! Once the panels are all gathered together, place them on top of each other along their shortest side – then place a 1/2″-thick piece of wood or cinderblock on top to compress them together. You can either tie fabric straps around all the sheets to keep them in place, or use small pieces of wood to prop up the corners.

How to stick egg cartons on wall?

Use a painters tape or sticky-tack to fix the masking. Then, put a plastic bag on the wall and put the egg carton sheets inside. After two hours later, you can easy to take off the bag and stick the sheets on your wall.

The finished soundproof room divider – perfect for drummers!

How effective is to soundproof a room by using egg cartons?

Soundproofing a room with egg cartons is a very effective, but not necessarily a cheap solution. It will depend on your budget and what size the room is – the bigger the space, the more expensive it will be. Egg cartons are generally about $3/sheet, which is pretty cheap for soundproofing.

If you want to keep the cost down, you can make your own egg carton panels from corrugated cardboard boxes. This DIY version of egg cartons only cost me about $1 each – it’s a lot cheaper than buying prepackaged cardboard panels. The biggest disadvantage of using this technique is that it won’t acoustically “hold” together as well as the purchased kind.

If you want to go even cheaper, you can use these DIY soundproofing tips instead . Remember to seal the edges with masking tape or similar material so that it doesn’t unravel or “bleed” sound.

Do egg cartons actually work at eliminating noise?

From what I’ve read, they should work pretty well. The Wiki page seems to contradict this, though. Someone should fact-check this article.

What will happen if you build a room out of egg cartons and you still hear sound?

You will be able to hear it – just at a lower volume than before. If you’re reaallly serious about getting rid of all noise, your best bet would be to use materials that absorb more than just the “middle” frequencies – foam and rubber work best for this purpose. Egg cartons are primarily designed to absorb high and low frequency sounds, so they would not be as effective against midrange and low-range sounds – such as human speech. They also won’t do anything for structural vibrations (like heavy bass).

I’ve heard that egg cartons will turn yellow after a few months – is this true?

A lot of the online sources I found claimed that the egg cartons would yellow in a matter of days, but I personally have had my panels for several months and have not seen any evidence of color change. Theoretically, they should start to discolor from sunlight exposure within a couple weeks.

Are egg boxes really effective for soundproofing?

Yes and no – they work for blocking out certain ranges of sound, but not all of them. I’m not sure exactly how they work, but I know for a fact that they do not block sound at the long-wavelengths, such as human speech (at least not well). But it does seem to absorb noise well in the low -mid range frequency ranges.

What is “middle”?

It’s a term that describes frequencies that lie between higher and lower frequencies. From what I’ve read online, it seems like the higher end frequencies are blocked by egg cartons (not well), and the lower end frequencies (such as human speech) is absorbed nearly entirely.

But egg cartons do not absorb the longwave spectrum, which includes human speech. That’s why you can hear a person talking in a room with egg-box soundproofing, but their voices will sound muffled and strange. You would probably have to use a lot of them to block out a big area of human speech.

Why is soundproofing material often egg carton shaped?

I don’t know, but it seems to be the preferred shape for commercial soundproofing panels. Perhaps it has something to do with the materials being easy to make or store?

I’ve also heard that you can fill these up with water to help treat tinnitus. Is this true?

Yes it is true. Egg cartons are filled with tiny holes, which act as an “internal ear” for tinnitus sufferers. People who suffer from this condition report that putting their head inside the container (or equivalent object) can help “hear” the ringing frequencies more clearly.

Although I’ve heard that it does seem to quieten down the volume of vibrations, it’s not a permanent solution. It does not eliminate tinnitus – it just shifts the center frequency of ringings to higher notes, so they’re less distracting than before.

How to use egg trays for soundproofing?

I can’t find a good video of how to build a soundproof wall, but there are some decent soundproofing videos online that demonstrate practical applications of egg cartons. If you’re looking for something specific, you can type the following into your favorite search engine:

“soundproof wall construction” or “soundproofing wall video”.

Soundproofing with egg cartons is a pretty simple project, but can be used for sound isolation. This kind of soundproofing works by absorbing the mid-range frequency ranges, which stops noise from escaping through walls.

You can use egg cartons to build a room divider between your drum kit and your bandmates, or even use them to isolate your speakers while you’re practicing at home. This is by far my favorite type of soundproofing material because it’s so cheap and easy to build yourself.