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Best Sound Deadening Material For Cars

James Benchman
Last Updated on
by James Benchman

What’s your favorite part about car rides?

Whether it’s listening to music or enjoying the peace and quiet, getting out of the house shouldn’t add stress to your day.

But it’s not as simple as it sounds – a quiet car ride can easily be ruined by the loud noises of the road, and external sounds interrupting your favorite music is a total vibe killer.

Fortunately, there’s a solution much more simple than these situations: automotive sound deadening material.

Car sound deadening materials keep unwanted road noises out, cancels vibrations, and even improves thermal insulation.

If you’re ready to make your car a more enjoyable place, then continue reading to find the best automotive sound deadening material, what you need to know about them, and the answers to your questions.

Automotive Sound Deadening Material
  • Best heat rating and vibration damping
  • 80 mil thick
  • Made in USA
Second Skin Spectrum Deadener
  • Water based acrylic polymer
  • Easiest to spray on
  • Temperature rated at 400 F
Dynamat
  • High resistance to heat
  • Blocks out all external noise
  • Very easy to install
  • 80 mil nominal thickness
  • 5 times more efficient than leading brands
  • Extremely affordable
  • Fast and easy installation
  • Comes with installment kit
  • Easy to remove and customize
  • Odor-free
  • Extremely affordable
  • Allows you to cover more space with 34 easy-to-use sheets
  • Thermal insulator and sound deadener in one
  • Protects your car from radiant heat
  • Applicable to nearly every part of the vehicle

Best Automotive Sound Deadening Material Reviews

1. Second Skin Damplifier Pro Sound Deadening Mat

Second Skin’s Damplifier Pro has the best specs and performance of any sound deadening mat we reviewed. It’s made in the USA, includes free shipping, and even has an Adhesion Guarantee. There’s a lot to like about Damplifier Pro.

Each sheet is 12” x 20” and comes in packs ranging from 6.5 square feet all the way up to 120 square feet. Larger packs will treat even the biggest vehicles and include significant discounts.

Second Skin is all about quality and it shows with their Damplifier Pro sound deadening mat. Damplifier Pro is 80 mil thick of a butyl compound with enhanced elastomeric properties. No asphalt, tar, or other cheap fillers. The thick foil constraint layer has a black protective coating with a ghosted logo, which is a nice touch if you want a more discreet mat.

Quality materials lead to quality results. Damplifier Pro has the highest heat rating in the industry (450 F!), making it safe to install even in performance vehicles and other high heat applications. Apply the self-adhesive mat anywhere you have vibrating metal to reduce road noise and increase speaker sound quality.

Damplifier Pro is easy to work with – requiring no heat gun and guaranteeing adhesion for the life of the vehicle. If the sheets are too stiff, just leave them out in the sun for 5 minutes before applying.

You only need to cover 25% of the metal (Second Skin recommends 60%) to enjoy damping performance that outclasses asphalt based mats by 3x to 10x.

Specifications:

  • 80 mil thick
  • Each sheet is 12 x 20 inches
  • -75 F to 450 F thermal rating
  • No asphalt or tar means no odor and no outgassed chemicals
  • Made in the USA
Pros
  • Engineered for performance
  • Adhesion guaranteed for life of vehicle
  • Highest heat rating in the industry
  • Black matte coating with ghosted logo
  • No odor
Cons
  • Difficult to remove
  • Roller must be purchased separately

2. Second Skin Spectrum Sound Deadening Spray

Second Skin Spectrum Deadener
Second Skin’s Spectrum Spray on Deadener is one of the most popular liquid sound deadeners.

This water based viscoelastic polymer comes in 1 gallon and 5 gallon containers and can be applied with a spray gun, brush, or roller.

If you’re more comfortable with a paint gun or brush than a hand roller, a sound deadening spray is a good alternative to the various mat products. Spectrum is a water based acrylic polymer formulated by Second Skin for excellent damping and adhesion.

Just like everything else we’ve seen from Second Skin, its specs are through the roof. Spectrum’s temperature rated up to 400 F, so it’s safe to use on the firewall and hood as well as anywhere else metal is vibrating.

Spectrum is non-toxic, waterproof, rustproof, flame resistant, and dries with a seamless, black finish. It’s very easy to clean up with water for the first 30 minutes, but after it’s dried Spectrum is stuck. Second Skin recommends two 1mm layers for a total thickness of 2mm.

No primer is required for metal or wood, but you should use one if applying to fiberglass, plastic, or a high gloss surface.

Specifications:

  • Water based product
  • Highly resistant to heat transfer
  • Odor free
  • Apply with a spray gun, brush, or roller
  • Made in the USA
Pros
  • Great for hard to reach parts of your vehicle
  • Non-toxic
  • Easy clean up with water
  • Will stick to just about anything
  • Very fast install with a spray gun
Cons
  • Requires plastic masking
  • Must wait 30 mins to dry if doing multiple layers

3. Dynamat 10455 Thick Self-Adhesive Sound Deadener

Dynamat
One of the most popular soundproofing materials, the Dynamat 10455 Thick Self-Adhesive Deadener is flexible and heat resistant, thanks to its aluminum coat.

It comes with 9 sheets of high tack permanent adhesive that completely soundproofs any space you apply it.

Dynamat Xtreme offers a simple solution to a rumbling engine, rattling speaker, buzzing car parts, and annoying road noise by applying it to the resonant surfaces of your vehicle.

The material blocks out rattling and external noises while also boosting the clarity, volume, and bass of your car’s stereo.

Compared to the Dynamat Original, Dynamat Xtreme is lighter, four times more effective, and the installation process requires no heat.

Not only can you apply it to your car’s tops, sides, and contoured areas, but also to firewalls and floors due to its aluminum coat, which allows it to perform well even in remarkably high temperatures.

Specifications:

  • 9 sheets, each 18 x 32 inches
  • High tack permanent adhesive
  • 085 inch nominal thickness
Pros
  • High resistance to heat
  • Blocks out all external noise
  • Very easy to install
Cons
  • Difficult to remove
  • Hard to cut once applied

4. Noico 80 Mil Sound Deadening Mat

Incredibly thick, these sound deadening mats are perfect for soundproofing automobiles.

With their butyl construction and lightweight nature, they play an impactful role in the efficiency of sound insulation that gives other materials a run for their money.

When looking for a high-quality soundproofing material, thicker always means better in terms of insulation and efficiency.  Thanks to its butyl composition, this material is thicker than most other sound deadeners and promises maximum sound quality.

Best suited for vehicles, the sheets fit perfectly can be applied to almost every space, such as the engine hood, trunk, and below the seats.

Even though the mats are comparably thick, they are still very lightweight, making the installation process a piece of cake.

Similar to Dynamat Xtreme, the Noico mats are also consist of automotive self-adhesive insulation, allowing them to perform their best regardless of temperature.

Specifications:

  • Self-adhesive butyl insulation
  • 7 pounds per square foot
  • 80 mil nominal thickness
  • 36 square foot total coverage area
  • 9 sheets in a stack
  • Sheet size: 29.5 x 19.5 inches
Pros
  • 80 mil nominal thickness
  • 5 times more efficient than leading brands
  • Extremely affordable
  • Easy to install and remove
  • Comes with an indicator to tell if the sheets have been properly installed or not
Cons
  • Design is quite different from other deadeners

5. FatMat Self-Adhesive Rattletrap Sound Deadener

If you’re looking for a thick, efficient, and easy-to-install soundproofing material, then the FatMat Self-Adhesive Rattletrap Sound Deadener will suit your fancy.

Designed to block out automotive noise and absorb all unwanted heat in your vehicle, this sound deadening material serves a variety of purposes.

The FatMat Self-Adhesive RattleTrap Sound Deadener isn’t just a soundproof material for your car — not only does it deaden unwanted noises in automotive, but also trucks, homes, RV’s, and marines.

Its design makes it an effective solution to keep sound in and block noise out, and does so with its 80 mil thickness.

Plus, its vibrational damper reduces distortion while boosting the bass, and the volume can range from a comfortable, casual sound to loud and heavy bass drops.

Coated in aluminum, the sound deadener is also heat-resistant. However, it doesn’t just resist the heat, it absorbs it.  FatMat absorbs the unwanted heat in your car and works as a heat insulator.

Specifications:

  • Set of five 18 inches (width) x 40 inches (length) self-adhesive RattleTrap sheets
  • 25 square foot total coverage area
  • Install kit, roller, knife, and FatMat Sound Control Decal included
  • 80 mil nominal thickness
Pros
  • Fast and easy installation
  • Comes with installment kit
  • Easy to remove and customize
  • Pliable and easy to cut
  • Wide variety of usage
Cons
  • Expensive
  • Constant pressure must be applied in order for it to stick well
  • Smell of adhesive is quite strong

6. Kilmat 80 Mil Car Sound Deadening Mat

This sound deadener manufactured by Kilmat is on the affordable end of the spectrum while still outperforming several of its biggest competitors.

Being universal, it can fit any car and not only works to expel outside noise but to also retain heat.

Designed with universal materials, the Kilmat 80 Mil Car Sound Deadening Mat works just as well outside as it does inside, meaning you can apply it to internally within your car or externally on the wheel well or hood.

Installing the mats is made easy with the product’s adhesive, which is extremely strong and long lasting.  As a result, the adhesive sticks the mats in place with a firm, secure grip while also providing it with durability.

Not only does it deaden road noise, but these soundproofing mats also work as the perfect thermostats.  In the summer, they insulate against heat, whereas in the winter they retain it.

Whereas most sound deadening products come with only a few sheets, Kilmat comes with 34 that are small, manageable, make installation easy, and allow you to cover more space than the average material.

Specifications:

  • 80 mil nominal thickness
  • 36 square foot total coverage area
  • 8 x 15.7 inch nominal sheet size
  • Roller is not included
Pros
  • Odor-free
  • Extremely affordable
  • High quality
  • Allows you to cover more space with 34 easy-to-use sheets
  • Long-lasting adhesive
Cons
  • You have to buy a roller separately
  • Installment is a bit time-consuming

7. Thermo-Tec 14620 Heat and Sound Suppressor

What sets this sound deadener apart from others is its ability to not only block out unwanted noise but to also insulate against heat, thanks to its polyethylene surface.

With 70 mil nominal thickness and its anti-heat insulation, this material promises to make your summer car rides enjoyable and peaceful.

If you’re looking for a product that will deaden unwanted noise and keep your car insulated from heat, then the Thermo-Tec 14620 Heat and Sound Suppressor is worthy of consideration.

The foil surface and polyethylene work together to protect your car from radiant heat, which not only makes summer drives more comfortable but also keeps your car from overheating.

No matter where the unwanted noises are coming from, Thermo-Tec is applicable to nearly any part and works ideally in areas such as firewalls, floorboards, and doors.  Plus, it’s easy to trim in case you need to apply it in areas with unique sizes or shapes.

Not only does the suppressor contain an impressive thickness of 70 mils, but it also has a high-temperature adhesive backing.

Specifications:

  • Polyethylene film
  • Foil surface
  • 70 mil nominal thickness
  • 5 x 3.9 x 3.8 inch dimensions
Pros
  • Thermal insulator and sound deadener in one
  • Protects your car from radiant heat
  • Applicable to nearly every part of the vehicle
  • Easy to trim
Cons
  • Difficult to remove
  • Polyethylene surface can unglue under extreme heat

Pre-Purchase Considerations

Automotive sound deadening materials not only have their fair share of individual specifications, but they can also be quite expensive.  Because of this, buying materials that don’t end up working for you can be a frustrating and costly mistake.

Fortunately, these problems are easy to avoid with the right amount of research.  Below, you’ll find everything you need to take into consideration before spending your money on a soundproofing material.

How Thick the Material is:

When it comes to sound deadeners, thicker materials provide better sound insulation.

So if you pay extremely close attention to every sound, or the slightest bit of road noise bothers you, then finding a material with a high amount of thickness is ideal for you.

Most sound deadeners consist of about 50 mil thickness, with 80 mil being extremely good.  However, the amount can get even higher.

There are some materials with thicknesses of over 100 mil.

Does Heat Impact the Material?:

Several sound deadeners don’t react well with the heat, which makes them big no-no’s for people living in warmer climates.

When these deadeners come in contact with high temperatures, their materials can melt, leave behind bad odors, or more.

However, soundproofing materials with adhesive tend to work well in hotter weather, with the heat not having a significant impact on their effectiveness.

Is it Odor-Free?:

As mentioned earlier, materials that don’t do well in high temperatures tend to leave behind foul odors when exposed to the heat.  However, that doesn’t make them the only materials that can produce a smell.

Many materials produce strong odors during the installation process and even after the adhesive has been applied.  While this only lasts for a limited period of time, it still isn’t a comfortable situation.

Plus, some materials have a constant odor, even if faint.  For example, a few are known to have the scent of a newly paved road.

Rollers Aren’t Always Included:

To ensure sheets will perform at their best, it’s important to roll them out before applying them to the vehicle.

While several products include these rollers, many others don’t, which means you’ll have to buy one separately before you’re able to use the sheets.

How To Soundproof A Car

Questions & Answers

Now that you know what to ask yourself when shopping for sound deadening materials, you probably have a few questions about how to use it and where it can be used.

We’ve put together a collection of commonly asked questions and answered them so you know exactly what you need to know when your sound deadener is delivered.

How to Install Sound Deadening Material?

Sound deadeners come in four different forms:

  • Insulation
  • Mats
  • Foam
  • Sprays

Each form has a different method of installation, and are best fit for different areas and spaces of the car.  For example, insulation is made mostly of fibers and works best for the roof and doors, whereas mats are ideal for the panels, floor, and doors.

The amount of material you use depends on how much noise you want to deaden.  If you’re hyper-sensitive to road noises, you’d want to use more materials than someone who simply wants to make them a bit quieter.

The method used to install the material depends on where you’re putting it.

Floor – remove the carpet, then clean the floor thoroughly.  After the floor is cleaned, apply the deadener.  Once applied, put the carpet back on.

Roof – remove the cloth headliner and clean the roof with rubbing alcohol.  Apply the sound deadener.  Put the headliner back in place.

Trunk – remove any items you have in the trunk and any floor fabric or carpet.  After cleaning the trunk, apply the material.

Firewall – dismantle the dashboard and then clean.  Apply the deadener and then reassemble the components you dismantled.

How to Remove Sound Deadeners?

Just because a sound deadener is easy to install doesn’t mean it’s easy to remove.  In fact, this is the case for many products, especially those that boast easy installment.

While the amount of time it takes to remove the material depends on the type of car, the process shouldn’t take more than an hour when using the proper tools.

Using about 20 pounds of dry ice, sprinkle enough to cover the tar.  Afterward, lightly tap it with a rubber mallet or small hammer.

Many people result to heating and scraping the material.  However, not only does it take a lifetime to remove, but it also makes a huge mess.

Concluding Thoughts: 

Car rides should be enjoyable and peaceful, and a fun time listening to your favorite music shouldn’t be interrupted by road noise.

And the great thing is, a high-quality solution doesn’t have to expensive or difficult to install. Investing in an automotive sound deadening material is one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to soundproof your vehicle.

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About James Benchman
James Benchman
James is an Automotive Mechanic with over 20 years experience and 300+ car repairs. He is an expert with cars and has worked with different models from the biggest brands.James is a Mechanic , Husband , Father of 3 , and head of content at Caraudiologic. Learn more about us
2 Comments
  1. James,

    Love the article, but I found myself left in the middle of the street scratching my head wondering after all is said and done, does the entire process of noise reduction work? At 65 years of age, my ears have taken a beating already. Road and wheel noise destroys my driving experience in my 2019 Toyota 86. As a music lover, I don’t even think of having my Entune factory junk radio blaring as whats the point? Adding more decibels to my worn ear speakers between my bald head!?!

    I purchased the car because, for the first time in my life, I wanted a toy I’ve never had. I wanted to break out of my practicality mode an feel life inside me again. I won’t bore you anymore with my ramblings on.

    Guess I’m seeking some pro advice as here in Bakersfield California all I get is total complete disinterest as in Nope, can’t say that I’ve ever done a complete interior matting job.

    Too expensive, my customers cannot afford.

    Figure that?

    1. Hi Gary, I appreciate your comments … and ramblings 😉 Hey, I totally get you, stuff happens when we get older and there’s no doubt. That said, just like your purchase of the 86, there’s a heck of a lot to be said about just enjoying yourself. Congrats on the car. Let me guess, you’re loving it, right? That’s also my attitude with car audio or any of my audiophile stuff. Ultimately, you have to do what you can appreciate and makes you happy. That’s what we’re here for, life and this website.

      Sound deadening makes a lot of difference, there’s no argument about that. Anybody that tells you otherwise is just uninformed. Check out what any higher end car manufacturer does after you get past their economy models. Quieter equals better sound. Check out what any good earbuds or in-ear monitors do. That’s right, they provide better (db) isolation. Again, there’s no argument, so I won’t waste your time saying more. Especially as we age, we are going to appreciate quieter as it gives our old … erm … well-used ears an opportunity to not have to work as hard to interpret what we’re trying to hear, compete with the road & tire noise, etc. So, even more reason to get deadening done in your car!

      Now, as far as getting it done in your car. You know, if you have time in your life, there’s no reason to rush it. Read up on the materials and the process and see if you’re willing to make it a fun project and just jump into it. I guarantee you’ll have a lot of fun, if you’re interested in a cool project. Otherwise, I know closer to LA, there are a ton of shops that can do it for you. By the way, we’re going to be launching significantly more content for this topic area (which I love and am a big fan) really soon. We’re just about to put that together and start publishing that in the coming weeks. Thanks for reading and let us know how you do!

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