Every day we experience sound in our environment such as the sounds from television and radio, household appliances, power tools and traffic. Normally, these sounds are at safe levels that don’t damage our hearing. However, when we’re exposed to harmful noise—sounds that are too loud or loud sounds that last a long time—sensitive structures in our inner ear can be damaged, causing noise induced hearing loss (NIHL).
Loud noises not only irritate you during the day, but they can ruin a good night’s sleep. Did you know that your brain continues to register noise even as you sleep? Research from the National Sleep Foundation indicates noise can disturb your sleep, making you prone to restless nights.
That's why most manufacturers of domestic appliances are constantly striving for quieter noise levels, we know we all use our appliances during the day but, increasingly with delay start functions, also very often at night. Noise levels of running appliances must therefore be a tolerant level.
This level will ultimately depend on your personal preference, but 40-50 db is generally accepted to be a quiet machine.
Next time you are near your washing machine on full spin, or your dishwasher in mid-wash cycle, compare the noise you can hear with the handy graph above.