How to reduce noise in your backyard

Reduce Noise in your Backyard | ModularWalls

In our busy world, investing in your peace and quiet is a crucial step toward a healthy, happy home. From loud traffic to reducing neighbour noise, here are the insider tips on how to reduce noise in your backyard!

 

Why you should reduce noise in your backyard

Noise has been suggested to affect our mental and physical well-being. It’s been linked to increased risk of hearing loss, generalised anxiety disorder, stress, disturbed sleeping patterns and can even reduce life span. Noise reduction, therefore, can positively affect more than just your Sunday morning sleep ins.

A 2003 study by Brown and Bullen found that up to 20% of dwellings in Australian cities were exposed to traffic noise well above the recommended by the World Health Organisation. This percentage has likely increased, due to Australia’s expanding population, advancements in infrastructure and the residential housing boom.

 

How to reduce noise in your backyard

The first step is to understand noise source and noise type, so you can decide if you need to absorb the noise or reflect it. Our handy guide to acoustic fencing goes into that further, but generally, common airborne noise like traffic or neighbours can be reduced with an acoustically rated boundary fence solution.

 

What to look for in a noise barrier or acoustic fence

Height: Acoustic barriers should be around 2m high to sufficiently block out traffic noise and prevent noise from rolling over the top; block the line of sight to help block the noise.

Note: Be sure to check local council regulations about height specifications.

Density/rigidity: The denser the material, the more likely it’ll absorb noise. A highway-adjacent home with semi-trailers rattling past will call for a denser barrier than a smaller residential street.

Full coverage: A noise barrier should extend all the way to the ground; gaps at the base or in between sections will allow extraneous noises to enter underneath.

Proximity to the sound: Sound protection barriers should be constructed as close to the source as possible, such as by the road or around an A/C unit. Alternatively, the barrier could surround a spot where you frequently sit, such as your courtyard.

 

Which fences are best for noise reduction?

It can be tricky enough to decide on a fence type, let alone finding one to solve your noise issues. To simplify things, we’ve listed the most common fencing types — in order of the highest noise reduction, to the least!

700x450-Reduce-Noise-Backyard-Brick-Wall

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1. Brick walls

PROS:

  • Up to 50% noise reduction
  • Highly durable

CONS:

  • Very expensive
  • Long and difficult installation
  • Susceptible to cracking over time

2. Modular walls and fences

PROS:

  • Up to 50% noise reduction
  • Up to half the price of a brick wall
  • Sleek, modern aesthetic
  • Rapid, easy installation
  • 15 year warranty

CONS:

  • More expensive than timber or metal.

How To Reduce Noise In Your Backyard | ModularWalls

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3. Brushwood fences

PROS:

  • Found to reduce noise if 600mm or thicker
  • Can last up to 30 years

CONS:

  • ‘Rustic’ aesthetic may not work with modern architectural designs
  • Aesthetics perish and become ragged over time
  • Not suitable for bushfire zones

How do I Reduce Noise in my Backyard | ModularWalls

4. Hedges

PROS:

  • Aesthetically pleasing
  • Psychological benefits
  • Studies show plants can reduce stress/anxiety

CONS:

  • Maximum noise reduction is about 25%
  • Plants need to mature to reduce any noise
  • High maintenance

The 10 Different Types of Fencing - Timber Fencing | ModularWalls

5. Timber fences

PROS:

  • Easy to install — DIY friendly
  • Cost effective

CONS:

  • Not much noise reduction, unless you pay for premium, thick wood
  • Susceptible to rot and termites
  • Heightened maintenance
  • Not suitable for bushfire zones

How To Reduce Noise In Your Backyard | ModularWalls

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6. Metal fencing

PROS:

  • Cost effective
  • Easy to install — DIY friendly

CONS:

  • Least effective noise barrier — almost no acoustic properties
  • Aesthetics are not long-lasting or versatile
  • Damages easily and unsuitable for high wind or coastal areas

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Go on — see what all the fuss is about and invest in your peace and quiet.

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