Best Sound Deadening Material

Finding the right sound deadening materials for your car can be a sticky situation sometimes (literally). There are a ton of options out there! We set out to find the cream of the crop and which ones are made in the USA. A good sound deadening setup can help you eliminate rattles, block noise, and absorb the natural vibrations in your car. Below are our findings, top recommendations for different types of sound deadening materials, and tons of details about what to consider when you’re making this type of purchase.

Our Findings

Overall, we found 4 brands that are making sound deadening materials in the USA and stood out from the competition: Second Skin Audio, Dynamat, HushMat, and LizardSkin. Each company has a variety of products that solve for a few different use cases, so we decided to focus on the two most popular types of sound deadening materials: mats and sprays.

Mats vs. Sprays

So, what’s the difference between getting a sound deadening mat vs. spray or liquid solution? In most use cases, they are actually pretty similar in terms of quality and many people choose to use them in tandem. The best mats are made from butyl rubber, aluminum, and a strong adhesive. They can be use anywhere there’s metal on your car. Sprays and liquids are typically used for those hard to reach places like wheel wells, under the fender, and under the car. When used in the vehicle’s interior, the car should usually be stripped down to the metal. Both are viable options, and it really just comes down to your personal preference on application.


Sound Deadening Mats

3 of the 4 best manufacturers we found sell sound deadening mats: Second Skin Audio, Dynamat, and HushMat. Our recommendations for their best products are below! What you really want to consider here is material quality, thickness, ease of application, and price per square foot, which we will get into plenty of details a little later.

RankBest Sound Deadening MatsThicknessMaterialPrice/Square Foot
1.Second Skin Audio Damplifier Pro (36.67 sq. ft.)80milelastomeric butyl + aluminum$5.59
2.Dynamat Xtreme (36.0 sq. ft.)48milelastomeric butyl + aluminum$9.44
3.HushMat (38.7 sq. ft.)60milviscoelastic polymer + aluminum$8.53

Second Skin Audio Damplifier Pro


We were super impressed by the Damplifier Pro product from Second Skin Audio, which is offering some of the best value in the industry in our opinion. The take their material quality seriously – all of their products are 100% butyl rubber. Damplifier Pro is one of the thickest foils we saw and has the highest heat rating among all of the products we looked at (450 F), which makes it safe to use them even in high heat applications like your engine’s firewall. We were also super impressed with their customer service – they were quick to respond to all of our questions and we were pleased to find that they ship directly from their U.S. factory super frequently, so their mats aren’t just sitting in a warehouse for months at a time before they get to you. The process for installing Damplifier Pro mats is pretty easy, it just takes a long time, depending on the amount of square footage you need to cover. And you also have to wear gloves – the edges of the foil are a little sharp. Overall, a really quality product that performed super well when we tested it out.

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Things we like:

  • 100% butyl rubber
  • Comes in sheets, not rolls
  • Highest heat rating in the industry
  • Meets car safety standards
  • No heat gun required

Things we don’t like:

  • Takes time to install
  • Need to wear gloves when installing

 

Dynamat Xtreme


Dynamat Xtreme is a solid elastomeric butyl and aluminum mat option for sound deadening, coming in 2nd place in our mat showdown. Dynamat offers a lot of the same benefits to Second Skin Audio in terms of material quality, but they fall short in heat rating (only 300 F) and thickness (32mil less than Damplifier Pro). The price per square foot is also a lot more expensive. That being said, the performance of their Xtreme mats is still good – it deadened the metal well in our testing. In terms of installation, it takes a while, but the process is pretty simple. You’ll want to do some surface cleaning beforehand to make sure the foil sticks well, but cutting and placing the mats in the right spots didn’t give us much trouble.

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Things we like:

  • Good material quality
  • Ease of application
  • No asphalt
  • Solid performance

Things we don’t like:

  • Thickness
  • Heat rating

 

HushMat


Hushmat is another sound deadening mat option that prides itself on ease of application. Their foil has smoother edges than other mats, it sticks fairly well, and it’s easy to cut with a simple pair of scissors. One of their bigger selling points is they offer tons of sound deadening kits for various makes, models, and years of vehicles. So, if you don’t want to spend time calculating the square footage you need to cover your car, HushMat might have an option for you. We weren’t overly impressed by HushMat’s sound blocking performance, but it gets the job done. Hushmat is thicker than Dynamat Xtreme, but their foil is thinner, which likely hurts the mat’s performance some (the advantage being the edges are the foil are smoother).

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Things we like:

  • Quicker application
  • Smoother edges on foil
  • Plenty of specific car make/model kit options
  • Sticks well

Things we don’t like:

  • Thinner foil
  • Doesn’t block noise as well as competition
  • Couldn’t find detailed performance data on their website

Sound Deadening Sprays

We only found 2 American manufacturers that are making high quality sound deadening sprays and liquids: Second Skin Audio and LizardSkin. Our picks for their best products are below. Make sure to check out the factors we considered in our research below as well.

RankBest Sound Deadening SpraysThicknessMaterialPrice/Square Foot
1.Second Skin Audio Spectrum Liquid (20 sq. ft.)1 gallon = 10 sq ft @ 2mm thickness (79 mil)water based viscoelastic polymer (mica, talc, calcium, crushed rubber)$3.74
2.LizardSkin Sound Control (20 sq. ft.)1 gallon = 20 sq ft @ 1mm thickness (40 mil)water based composition of high grade acrylic binder + sound damping particles$4.66

Second Skin Audio Spectrum Liquid


Once again, Second Skin Audio impressed us with the quality and value of their liquid sound deadening product: Spectrum. Like we talked about earlier, you can use this in tandem with mats to cover some of the harder to reach places around your vehicle, inside or out. Spectrum Liquid comes with a lot of same heat rating and quality characteristics as their Damplifier product, and as also a lot thicker than the competition, which matters a lot for sound deadening performance. When you’re applying this product, we recommend that you use a spray gun, which will be easiest. You can also use a brush or roller, and we also found it surprisingly easy to clean.

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Things we like:

  • Heat rating up to 400 F
  • Strong performance
  • Easy to apply and clean
  • Thick (although you can choose your own thickness with the amount of layers you apply)
  • Odor free after drying

Things we don’t like:

  • Takes more prep time, but actual spray installation can be quick
  • Can get messy if you’re not careful (don’t get it on fabrics)

 

LizardSkin Sound Control


LizardSkin is another American made sound deadening spray option. We found their Sound Control spray to work pretty well. It’s relatively easy to apply, easy to clean with soap and water, and gets the job done in terms of sound deadening performance. Their product is non-toxic and class-A fire rated as well. Overall, LizardSkin is a very quality American made option, and only got edged out by Second Skin Audio because of the price. LizardSkin also sells a “SuperPro Application Kit” that comes with everything you need for installation, including a spray gun. Note: if you’re also using their Ceramic Insulation product, you have to apply their Sound Control spray first.

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Things we like:

  • Non-toxic
  • Performs well
  • Can get an application kit with it

Things we don’t like:

  • Price
  • Can get messy, don’t apply around fabrics

Factors We Considered

Material Quality

Material quality is super important when it comes to sound deadening materials. We mentioned it briefly before, but you want to avoid products that include asphalt at all costs. A lot of low-quality manufacturers will include to save on cost, but it doesn’t perform as well and has significant health concerns. Asphalt has been labeled a class 2b carcinogen by the IARC, because of chemicals it releases when heated. Cars get hot – seems like a bad combo! This is a clear case of avoiding the cheaper, overseas made alternatives if you can afford to. Why turn your car into an asphalt lab test when there’s real noise (get it?) out there about the risks? Pick one of the high quality options.

The best sound deadening materials are made with a base of butyl rubber. You’ll typically see that paired with aluminum for mats, and a water based viscoelastic polymer for liquids and sprays.

We also considered the heat rating of all the products we researched. It’s a well known fact that cars get hot, so you want to protect your investment and hard work with a sound deadening material that is protected to at least 300 F, well out of the range of peak engine and exhaust temperatures.

Thickness

The thickness of a sound deadening mat or spray has a direct correlation with the amount of structural and airborne noise you’ll be able to block out. In most applications, you’re going to want at the very least 40mil, but as a general rule – thicker products yield better results.

Application Process

Having an easy application process was a big consideration for us. Most of you are going to be installing these materials yourself, so we don’t want that process to be overly complicated and put you at risk to damaging your car.

More specifically, we looked at how easy it was to:

  • Unpackage the products
  • Prep the surface of the vehicle
  • Cut the mats and stick them to various surfaces
  • Brush on and spray the liquid products
  • Clean up residue

Price Per Square Foot

Comparing prices for these types of materials can be super confusing – every manufacturer offers different square footage packages and pricing models. In our tables above, we broke down all of our top picks into a common per square foot calculation. We found that many of the non-American made products had a much lower price per square foot, but we also were unimpressed and sometimes concerned by their quality. We felt like we found a pocket of really good value with Second Skin Audio and some other top picks when we compared them to the competition.