Monday, October 25, 2010

DIY: Cheap Basic Soundproofing using Insulflex ®

    For those of you with cars which aren't sound proofed, acquiring a better quality ride in terms of NVH (Noise Vibration Harshness) could be easily done. Note: This cannot be compared to auto foam or professional sound proofing specialists' work, but serves as a BASIC form of soundproofing only. For the price you pay and the satisfaction of DIY, it is actually a worthwhile project to undertake. However, if your really serious and willing to fork out more money for better quality, I recommend you take a look at AutoFoam; there are many wonderful reviews regarding AutoFoam around the net.

To be more specific, Insulflex does not really "soundproof" the ride but insulates and dampens outside noise from interior noise, hence the name Insulflex. Similar products include Superlon.Coupled with sound deadening product that reduces the vibration is essential for better quality NVH. For sound deadening, deadening soundproofing mats such as Dynamat could be used. In most cars they also have tar pads to absorb vibration. For wind sound, you can try those Bitumen strips for car door areas.

To remove the door panel, just remove any visible screws. For my case there is 2 screws (one at the arm rest holder, another at the door lock area). For Proton Savvy I know there is like 5 screws holding the panel. For front door, the tweeter speaker box can just be pulled out. After all the screws are removed, pry your hand along the edges and pull the panel. Usually it is held only by clips. After the clips are open, lift the panel up and you should be able to remove it.

Preparing the mat for application: simply cut it into rough sizes according to your panel size. Excess could be trimmed after the glue has been applied. Make sure you note down the clip holding areas and any screws or cables that should be passing through the mat, especially the arm rest holder and door lock. For cables I just cut a small hole to let the cable pass through. For me it is better to leave some areas, due to the nature of the panel, once you stick the mat there may be curves that demand for extra width.

To apply the Insulflex, use Dunlop Contact Adhesive (CA) glue and apply evenly on the smooth side of the Insuflex mat. For hood it is recommended you have 2 person to do it together, due to the nature of the glue it might dry before you manage to stick it.

Completion: Make sure the mat is properly glued to the panel by pressing it down. You should get some kind of shape for panels with contours. Trim away excessive Insulflex.

Recommended Areas for Application
1. Doors
2. Front bonnet
3. Rear trunk lid
4. Boot floor and walls
5. Floor pan
6. Front fender / wheel arc
7. Roof
8. Engine firewall

Personally I have applied the mat for doors and front bonnet. For the doors, the result is wonderful! Most external noise is significantly reduced. Instead, the noise comes from the tyre area. For the bonnet, both me and my friend have benefited from quieter engine revving sound heard in the cabin. Overall, for the cheap price of the material, it is an enjoyable DIY experience!

Finally for those of you in Petaling Jaya, (Malaysia) wishing to purchase Insulflex, I have purchased mine from this great seller @ Lowyat.Net : 012-3001933 - Kelvin