So, I've owned my Crosstrek for a little over 9 months now and I have enjoyed the ride quite a bit. I regularly drive between Seattle and Yakima, a trip that takes you through some hairy conditions in the winter which this car has always tackled like a champ. There have only been two issues I've found with it that I wish could have been addressed in the design, 1) it's susceptibility to crosswinds and 2) general road noise. I can't really do anything about the crosswinds issue but a little research revealed the many products out their for making one's ride quieter.
Being a bit of a stickler I got an app for my phone that measures and records noise levels in my car.
Riding on the stock all-season tires I recorded the following baseline noise data on a rough patch of I-90.
This seemed pretty loud and after many hours on the road, can be pretty wearing. OSHA certainly wouldn't recommend it.
So, I opted for Noico 80 mil noise dampening material purchased off of Amazon and made in Russia!
YouTube offers many guides for installing this material and theoretically it was pretty straight forward. Just remove the panels and roll on the material... fool that I am, ate it up!
I ended up having to do this project in two phases because I initially ran out material.
Phase 1: Doors and reach hatch
Phase 2: Rear wheel wells and area under spare tire.
Phase 1: Unexpectedly Easy, Unexpectedly Laborious
Phase 1 involved removing the door panels which proved very, very easy. Two screws, some gentle prying later, boom, prepping done. (I've removed doors from other vehicles and it has required tracking many screw types, fragile binding clips, etc.)
The hard part came in sizing and applying the material. If you haven't worked with this material you'll quickly find that it behaves in unexpected ways. For example, when you remove the adhesive backing, the material goes limp and proceeds to stick to everything. Or, when you cut the pieces to shape, the edges of the nice aluminum backing become razors that leave your hands lightly bleed...everywhere. Okay, so you put gloves on but then the material sticks to the gloves and the gloves stick to the inside of the door cavity.
Damned if I do, damned if I don't I opted for a slow death of a thousand cuts and hand dexterity. Six hours and a few thousand cuts later I completed phase 1.
My test ride following showed only modest improvement!!!
Average noise at 85 dB...
Much cussing and a lot of frustration later I proceeded to phase 2 hoping that maybe the trunk area is the REAL source of noise in the cabin. This phase was much quicker(no cavities to reach into
), maybe an hour and I am encouraged by a discernible reduction in noise! I'll be driving to Yakima this weekend and will collect some post-installation data along the same stretch for some finalish results.
Anybody else had an experience like this?
Any recommendations for further measures to take that don't involve removing the seats or headliner?