A treadmill machine is a great way to stay fit at home, but the noise can be disrupting.
You’ll probably get complaints from your neighbors or roommates because of it — especially if your apartment has thin walls.
In this guide, you’ll learn:
- The different types of apartment noise
- The different causes of treadmill noise
- How to reduce treadmill noise in an apartment
- How to properly maintain your treadmill
With these easy tips, you won’t need to give up your daily workout!
Causes of Treadmill Noise
Treadmills produce structural noise due to the machine movement, and we can’t really avoid that. The vibrations from the treadmills can move into floors and walls and can LEAK THROUGH to another room.
The problem gets even worse if your treadmill isn’t positioned properly. If it’s not placed on a completely flat surface, the amount of noise is increased as it wobbles and creates impact noise with the floor.
Treadmill noise is pretty manageable, but what if it’s unusually loud? You might want to check the treadmill itself, especially if it’s an old model.
There are several reasons why your treadmill makes a loud noise, but the most common ones are:
- Clogged treadmill motor: Motors of older treadmills tend to be clogged with debris and collected dust. You should probably check and clean the motor for it to run smoothly.
- Treadmill belt is not adjusted properly: Before using your treadmill, you have to make sure that the belt is adjusted accordingly. Follow the instruction manual when setting it up. More often than not, this is the cause of treadmill noise.
- Treadmill components failure: Some treadmill components may be loose or malfunctioning. Make sure you TIGHTEN THE BOLTS upon set-up to reduce treadmill noise.
These are only the common causes of a noisy treadmill. Sometimes your treadmill just creates a lot of noise. Luckily, there are different methods on how to reduce treadmill noise in an apartment for a quieter treadmill!
Best Ways on How to Reduce Treadmill Noise in an Apartment
Soundproof Your Treadmill
Reducing treadmill noise starts with choosing your workout equipment. You should ALWAYS LOOK FOR machines that have noise reduction features.
You might also end up choosing lightweight treadmills as they’re ideal for moving to an upstairs apartment.
Despite its benefits…they’re more prone to movement.
Your fitness equipment should have a stable base. A wobbling treadmill creates a lot of impact noise.
It’s ideal to pick a machine as they have LESS NOISE AND VIBRATION compared to a lightweight one.
Though you should keep an eye out for a key feature called “shock-absorbing belt.” This helps reduce the noise of each step you take.
You should also be cautious of the motor power of the treadmill that you use. Most machine treadmills used in a gym have powerful motors. These can generate a huge amount of noise, especially if you use them for running.
You have the option to choose a manual treadmill instead.
They cost less and don’t contain any electric components. The downside of this is it generates more noise and vibration when stepping on the non-motorized belt.
- Lightweight treadmills generate more sound
- It’s always best to ENSURE your treadmill HAS a stable base
- A more powerful motor means a noisier machine
If you can’t afford to purchase a quieter treadmill, here are some solutions in reducing treadmill noise:
#1 Treadmill Isolation Pads
These isolation pads are specifically designed for treadmills. They EFFECTIVELY REDUCE the vibrations coming from the machine by acting as shock absorbers.
NOT ALL isolation pads work, so you have to check carefully before purchasing. They don’t fully soundproof your treadmill, but they do reduce the sound coming from the machine drastically!
All you have to do is place them UNDER EACH CORNER of the treadmill to lessen the impact on the floor.
#2 Treadmill Anti-Vibration Pads
Anti-vibration pads might be more effective than isolation pads. While isolation pads are made out of porous cork material, anti-vibration pads are made out of PURE, DENSE RUBBER.
It compresses the treadmill corners against the floor, effectively absorbing and preventing impact noise and vibrations. Have anti-vibration pads at least HALF AN INCH THICK to absorb the sound.
They’re mostly used for soundproofing various home appliances. You can also see it used in a gym that doesn’t have interlocking floor mats.
Make sure the pads are BIGGER than the corners so they stay in place when used.
#3 Treadmill Rubber Mat
Compared to the pads, a treadmill rubber mat covers the ENTIRE FLOOR under the machine.
Here’s how a treadmill mat soundproofs your treadmill:
- Its dense rubber material can absorb vibrations, impact noise, and has great shock absorption. These effectively minimize noisy treadmill sounds.
- The rubber treadmill mat also protects your floor from any scratches.
- Its grippy surface also keeps it steady, keeping it from disturbing your downstairs neighbors.
Before purchasing, make sure you measure the entire space of the machine. Choose a treadmill mat that is several inches larger on all sides.
Soundproof the Room
Chances are, in an apartment, you don’t have a specific workout room. Most of the time, people place their treadmill in the living room, which is an open space.
So what if you’ve soundproofed your treadmill already? The structure of the area where the treadmill is placed can still amplify the noise and disturb your neighbors.
One way to remedy this is to SOUNDPROOF THE ROOM:
#4 Treadmill Positioning
Where you place your treadmill can influence its noise levels.
Make sure to place the treadmill in a location NOWHERE near your neighbors’ bedroom or living room. The ideal location for a quiet treadmill that won’t disturb your neighbors is the center of your home, away from the walls.
This way, you can MINIMIZE the echo from the walls. It doesn’t fully eliminate noise, but it’s something you can do to minimize it.
If you have children roaming around your place, it might not be ideal to place it at the center. Remember, safety comes first!
#5 Soundproof Floors
Having your treadmill placed directly on concrete or a wooden floor can create a lot of noise. One way to soundproof your floor is to have a thick carpeted area or a thick rug.
REMEMBER: The thicker your carpet is, the more noise and vibration it will absorb.
You can also choose to use interlocking floor tiles to absorb the vibrations. These are mostly used in gyms.
Another option is to put acoustic underlayment beneath. Although, you might have to pick apart the floor structure of your apartment to apply it.
But if you’re willing to take the extra mile, you could always do a remodeling project! Just make sure to ask permission from your landlord.
READ MORE: How to Soundproof a Floor in a Apartment
#6 Soundproofing Blankets
Some walls of apartments can be thin and porous, which can be a big nuisance. Sound can easily pass through it and leak through your neighbors’ rooms. More so if the treadmill is close to the wall.
You have the option to put soundproofing materials either inside or outside the walls. However, you should probably check with your landlord FIRST if you can.
If you don’t want to ruin or damage your walls, you can use soundproofing blankets. There are different options to secure them to the wall:
- Glue or tape them on the wall like how you would with a poster. Make sure to use industrial adhesive to hold the weight of the blanket.
- Nail it against the wall.
- Install a curtain rod and hang them from there.
- Use a mounting putty or tack if you don’t want to damage your walls.
You can also opt to use this for your floors!
#7 Foam Mats
Others choose to use foam mats instead. These mats are made out of rubber, and they work as insulators. It’s a better choice than blankets because they’re resistant to moisture.
Plus, you won’t need any extra construction work with it! You can just stick it on the wall, and you’re good to go! Again, make sure you discuss it with your landlord.
Get a Good Pair of Running Shoes
One thing you can also do to reduce noise is to get yourself a pair of LIGHT running shoes. The heavier steps you do on the belt, the more noise you produce.
It doesn’t really soundproof your treadmill, but it helps lessen the noise. It’s also ideal to have lighter shoes so that your steps wouldn’t damage your knees and the treadmill belt.
Maintenance is essential to keep your treadmill running smoothly. But also, keeping it in mint condition can drastically lessen its motor and belt sounds.
Lubricate Treadmill Belt
Treadmill belts should be lubricated EVERY 3 – 6 MONTHS. If the belt is dry, there’s an increased amount of friction that can produce more noise.
The treadmill belts simultaneously interact with your feet and the rollers, and they can get very loud when they’re not lubricated regularly.
Make sure you use the right lubrication made for treadmills. Using just any other lubrication can damage the belt and the insides of the machine if you’re not careful.
Here’s a trusted treadmill lubricant that works well with treadmill brands like Nautilus, Life Fitness Horizon, and others.
Regularly Clean the Treadmill Motor
Most noise problems occur because of a dirty motor.
These parts of the machine suck in dirt and debris. When left unclean, it can lead to more noise and eventually damage the treadmill.
You can check the user manual for specific cleaning instructions. You MIGHT need to disassemble the treadmill when cleaning the motor.
Common Apartment Noise: Why Does the Sound Echo From My Treadmill?
There are two reasons why: Impact and Airborne Noise.
Together, these create that god-awful noise you keep hearing. Let’s discuss each further below.
It’s also known as footfall noise as it is produced by the IMPACT of any object or action on the floor. This is very common in apartments, especially if the walls and floors are thin.
Examples of this are footsteps, moving furniture, or dropping an item. These tend to have a HIGHER NOISE LEVEL due to the direct interaction.
The vibrations from impact noise penetrate through the floor or wall onto the room below or next door.
Airborne Noise, as it is named, is noise transmitted via air.
An example of this is the structural noise coming from your treadmill that can be heard throughout your apartment building.
Other examples can be sounds of people talking, toilet flushing, and TV static that can travel through vents and doors.
Wrapping It All Up!
Purchasing your own treadmill pushes you to regularly workout and take care of your health. Living in an apartment shouldn’t stop you from doing so!
Though you do have to be considerate to your neighbors. Without a doubt, the different soundproofing solutions mentioned will help lessen the noise.
You can combine different methods together to make noise reduction more effective! Just don’t forget to let your landlord know about any major modifications.
On the other hand, you can also consider getting quieter treadmills instead. Pairing these up with any of the soundproofing tips we mentioned will be even MORE effective!
We hope this guide was able to help you lessen your treadmill noises!
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