FoamOrder’s Ultimate Guide to Sound Absorption With Egg Crate Foam

As the name suggests, egg crate foam has one side that features ”dips and points” reminiscent of an egg crate. Also known as convoluted acoustic foam, this foam type is a popular and widely used option for sound absorption for home and professional use. FoamOrder has compiled this helpful guide to give you everything you need to know when choosing egg crate foam.

What Is Sound Absorption?

Sound waves travel roughly 332 meters per second — that’s 0.21 miles per second. This is an ideal situation where there are no obstacles to impede sound waves on their journey into our ears. As the sound wave travels and bounces into a variety of objects, including walls, the wave loses strength and sound starts to dissipate. Therefore, sound absorption is defined by how much energy is removed from the sound wave as it passes through or encounters any given material.

How Sound Absorption Works

When the sound wave encounters a hard, nonporous surface, it rebounds and continues to reverberate around. A softer, porous surface such as egg crate foam allows the sound wave to flow into it but due to the foam’s design, the wave is significantly deadened. When the sound wave comes out of the porous surface, it is significantly slower — therefore, dampened and quieter.

The Difference Between Soundproofing and Absorption

When the overall goal is to reduce sound coming in or out of a room, there are different levels of sound diminishment to choose from, depending on your needs.

Soundproofing

Soundproofing completely prevents sounds from coming in or out of a room. To achieve this, the room or building is built with the intention of soundproofing it. Deadening materials form the foundation of the walls to truly make the room soundproof. A common misconception is that by adding egg crate foam panels to your walls, you can make a room soundproof. This is not the case.

Sound Absorption

Sound absorption can be achieved after a room or building is already constructed, and is used to diminish the amount of sound that is heard inside or outside of the room. By using acoustic foam panels such as egg crate foam, sound waves are partially absorbed and the room or area is quieter.

Why Egg Crate Foam?

The unique concave/convex design of egg crate foam increases the surface area of the foam, making it better suited to absorb sound waves. In addition to dampening sound coming out or into the room, egg crate foam is also excellent at improving the sound inside the room, which is excellent for recording studios or theater rooms. Egg crate foam is also a cheaper alternative to other options on the market.

There are other benefits to using egg crate foam, including: 

  • Higher density, for better sound absorption 
  • Easy to install where needed
  • Excellent flame-resistant qualities, which makes them efficient and safe

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Rates and Absorption

To determine the effectiveness of acoustic foam, it is measured by the noise reduction coefficient (NRC), which represents the amount of sound energy that is absorbed when it strikes a particular surface. 

Perfect soundproofing has an NRC of 0, while perfect absorption has an NRC of 1. To reach this number, sound decibels are tested in a concrete room with and without foam panels. The change in octaves based on sound frequencies is rounded to the nearest multiple of 0.05 to get the final number

  • A 1-½” egg crate foam has an overall sound absorption score of 0.45
  • A 2-½” egg crate foam has an overall sound absorption score of 0.60

Installing Egg Crate Foam Without Damage

When installing egg crate foam in your space, follow these methods for protection against wall damage. 

To begin, purchase an adhesive spray. Spray the smooth side of the foam in a back-and-forth motion to ensure the surface is properly covered. Note, if your foam already comes with an adhesive backing, you can skip this step. 

Next, press the foam adhesive side down onto a piece of cardboard and hold it in place — with adequate pressure — for at least 30 seconds. Allow the foam to dry on the cardboard for one to two hours. 

Once the glue is dry, trim off the excess cardboard without cutting the foam. Ensure that when you are looking at the foam panel from the egg crate side, no cardboard is visible. 

Finally, add removable adhesive like command strips to the back of the cardboard and attach it to the wall.

Where to Use Egg Crate Foam

There are many places that egg crate foam can be used, including:

  • Computer and server rooms 
  • Utility rooms
  • Recording studios
  • Compressor enclosures
  • Music/band practice areas
  • And more 

Questions to Ask When Choosing Sound Foam

When you are looking to add egg crate sound foam, there are a few questions you should ask before choosing a foam. 

  • Are you looking to block sound or absorb echo?
  • What are the dimensions of the hard surfaces in your room?
  • What is the room used for?
  • Why types of sounds are you looking to block or absorb?
  • What type of finish or colors are you looking for?
  • Are aesthetics important or do you need to do this on a tight budget?
  • What is the rate and level of the egg crate foam?

Shop FoamOrder Acoustic Foam

When you’re looking for foam experts, FoamOrder is the place to go. Foam is what we do! We offer three choices of egg crate acoustic foam for all of your sound absorption needs:

  • Aresto acoustic foam: Flexible Ester foam (polyester polyurethane) is your basic, light acoustic foam
  • 3002ch acoustic foam: More rigid Ester foam (polyester polyurethane) resists degradation and extreme temperatures.  Best for outdoor applications. 
  • CD30 acoustic foam: Designed for environments where anti-static properties are important

Order a sheet to cut yourself (it’s easy and can be done with household scissors or a serrated knife) or enter youryour dimensions and have our team do the cutting for you. If you need help or advice, get in touch with our highly experienced and dedicated foam professionals today to get started with egg crate foam sound absorption panels.