How to Dampen Engine Noise

by David Lipscomb
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new car engine with red trim image by Raxxillion from

One of the key differences between a luxury vehicle and a run-of-the mill car is the absence of ambient noise in the former. Luxury manufacturers go to great pains to not only dampen engine and mechanical noise, but also to restrict noise from the outside. Engines are obviously a source of noise and vibration and various manufacturers have heeded the call of vehicle owners to quell the noise emanating from under the hood. This is something that a do-it-yourselfer can emulate, providing that time and the proper tools are available.

Step 1

Pop the hood from inside the vehicle, then open the hood fully from outside the vehicle.

Step 2

Insert the opening of the panel popper tool under the plastic retaining clips that hold the fabric insulating material under the hood, Remove the material fully.

Step 3

Clean the underside of the hood and exposed firewall completely using the cloth and alcohol. Wait a few seconds for the alcohol to flash, or dry fully.

Step 4

Peel off the backing of the sound deadening sheets. Place the sheets in the area occupied by the heat shield fabric, overlapping slightly. It is important to achieve full coverage with no gaps.

Step 5

Press the dampening sheets firmly into place using the burnishing roller, so that the sheets form-fit with the various molds and ridges under the hood.

Step 6

Cut additional sheets to fit on open metal on the engine side of the firewall. Apply the dampening sheets to the firewall in any metal area.

Step 7

Re-attach the insulating material by pressing the attaching pins through the sound deadening sheets, back into their receiving holes.

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