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Street Race Truck More... The Toolbox

Installing Insulation & Loop Carpet on a Car Floor

3/18/2019

I often find that some of the subtler advances in automotive technologies go over looked, and one that would be immediately noticeable if it were to be removed is sound / heat insulation. Perhaps time has faded memory, but those of us with hot rods and muscle cars will know that there is a huge difference between hopping in your cruiser and driving a modern vehicle. They’re loud and boisterous, but we like them that way.

However, sometimes there is such a thing as too much. To anyone who has worked on cars for a period of time can tell you exhaust drone can be a terrible thing especially on long drive. It can hinder your excitement to take your car out and enjoy it. Well, I didn’t have an issue with drone on my personal vehicle, but it was just a little noisy inside the cabin for my liking. Conversations were held as shouting matches and the radio was nigh on useless unless cranked all the way up. So, I decided that combined with the scorching heat we had this summer I would go about insulating the floor of the car making it quieter and cooler to boot.

Now, anything that goes in is an improvement as the cheap economy cars of the 60s were designed as simple grocery getters that got good gas mileage. Frills were kept to a minimum and ease of maintenance and cost cutting were on the forefront of production. My car came with a molded rubber mat that covered the floor there was no insulation. It was like gluing a welcome mat to the floor. That was swiftly removed as the years had taken its toll and it was prone to cracking / crumbling, and was rather unsightly.

I had removed that previously and had taken the cheap route as a teenager, installing a makeshift carpet from all thing indoor/outdoor carpeting from the local hardware store. This is going to be fixed shortly. I had used double sided carpet tape to attempt to stick the carpet to the floor, which worked to an extent.

First, I set about removing the seats, carpet and cleaning off any remaining gunk that was attached to the floor. There were some things that were missed. After that I gave the whole floor a clean with wax and grease remover to make sure it was clean and what I was about to do next would work.

I started by laying out the Aluminized Heat and Noise Double Sided Insulation in the vehicle trimming here and there to fit for transmission tunnel and seat mounting points. Make sure to cut reliefs for any bends or tight curves in the floor. I made sure to cover all the way back to the area underneath the rear seat to cover as much as possible, now is a good time to mention to be aware of the location of your seat brackets, seat belt mounting holes and any other holes or components that need to be clearanced.

With the remaining material I insulated the fire wall and behind the kick panels. I then removed the insulation and one last time wiped down the floor. Next, I took the Heat Resistant Contact Adhesive and started in the front and only sprayed a small section at a time. Working my way from the corner out, I paid special attention to the hole I had cutout for the shifter I used DEis Cool-Tape to tape the circumference of the hole to cover the metal edge and help keep from cutting myself and hold the insulation tightly to the floor.

Now you can use a Boom Mat Installation Roller or a Dynmat Pro Roller to help apply the insulation and get the insulation to form to the floor better. I repeated the procedure for the kick panels but since I can remove them from the car was a little bit easier of a process. After finishing I followed up with a Loop Carpet from ACC, I wanted the molded carpet for the best fitment but had to modify it for the hole I had made for my shifter. This is harder than it looks, there is still extra material that needs trimming and my suggestion is to use a very nice set of scissors intended for fabric.

After that was complete, I reinstalled the seats and admired how much nicer the interior looks. I then took it out for a drive and a noticeable reduction in noise and heat input was made. And now it’s that much easier to enjoy driving my car.

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