Acoustic Foam & Glueing

Written by steve smith
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Acoustic Foam & Glueing
Foam is often used for sound dampening. (pink foam image by laurent dambies from Fotolia.com)

Installing acoustic foam in a car will improve your stereo sound by dampening noise from the road and silencing vibrations. It is also a way to soundproof a home recording studio or a duplex. There are several ways to install acoustic foam, but one popular method is by gluing. Foam rubber is glued with a special adhesive that comes in a spray can or bottle.

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Types of adhesives

There are several adhesives made especially for foam rubber sheets. 3M Company makes a spray on adhesive for foam called Fast 7. Gorilla Glue is also used for gluing foams. Quick Stick is another product used for foam. Acoustic foam may be installed with any one of these glues. They glue the foam to wood or another foam surface.

Why use glues?

Glue is used because it seals the foam directly to the surface of the wall or panelling. Nails or screws would puncture the foam and affect the soundproofing of the material. Foam is easily compressed as well. A nail or screw will not provide a secure installation without compacting the foam at the point of installation.

Considerations

Gluing acoustic foam with an adhesive of any kind will provide a permanent solution. Before you glue the foam to a wall or your car interior make sure the foam is cut to the proper length and width. Also make sure you want to have foam in place for a considerable length of time. Removing the foam is difficult, and some adhesives leave residues behind.

Gluing tips

When installing acoustic foam using adhesive, a spray-on glue is the easiest to use. This adhesive is simply applied to the surface of the foam, then the foam is pushed into place. Wait until the adhesive "sets up" for about a minute and becomes tacky before you press the foam into place. The foam will hold faster to the surface and the installation will be easier, especially on a ceiling or tough-to-reach surface.

Where to find foam glue

Foam glue is sold at craft stores, hobby stores and some home-improvement stores. Gorilla Glue is available at nearly every hardware store. Speciality glues are available online by conducting a search for "foam glue." For gluing acoustic foam to metal or fibreglass, search marine stores for speciality epoxies. Glue guns are another alternative. Hot glue sticks may provide a better foundation for foam to be installed over drywall, fibreglass or plastic.

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