Acceptable Noise - dBA - Levels

Acceptable noise - dBA - levels at some locations

The main advantages with dBA - the A weighting in noise measurements - are

  • adapted to the the human ear response to sound
  • possible to measure with low cost instruments

Maximum acceptable Equivalent Sound Level - Leq - at some common locations are indicated in the table below:

Location Effects Maximum Leq (dBA) Time (hours) Time of day
Bedroom sleep disturbance, annoyance 30 8 night
Living area annoyance, speech interference 50 16 day
Outdoor living area moderate annoyance 50 16 day
Outdoor living area serious annoyance 55 16 day
Outdoor living area sleep disturbance, with open windows 45 8 night
School classroom speech interference, communication disturbance 35 8 day
Hospitals patient rooms sleep disturbance, communication interference 30 - 35 8 day and night

Related Topics

  • Acoustics - Room acoustics, acoustic properties - decibel A, B and C - Noise Rating (NR) curves, sound transmission, sound pressure, sound intensity, attenuation and more

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