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  • Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

    Hi,
    Almost all woodworking tools and machinery are noisy enough. What are the regulations in this regard, allowed noise levels and etc. If I setup hobby workshop in my garage, may I have troubles with complaining neighbors? Our house is in residential area in Edmonton, not acreage.

  • #2

    Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

    Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

    I have always had my workshop in my basement even when in a townhouse and never had complaints from the neighbors and I would think the garage is the same thing. As long as you are considerate I don't think you would have any problems. By considerate I am talking with the hours when you are making noise. I generally never started before 9:00am and usually quit by 8:00pm when I was using the noisier equipment (planer and router in my case).
    Jamie www.turneddesignsbyjamie.etsy.com

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    • #3

      Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

      Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

      I think you will find with the doors closed any noise will be quite muffled. Of course a couple hand made gift don't hurt either
      sigpic
      Jerome
      Canada's South Coast
      Port Colborne On.
      Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.
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      • #4

        Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

        Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

        I firmly believe your choice in equipment will make a huge difference as well.... The screaming noise made from those universal motors is deafening. Machinery using separate induction motors are a pleasure to use, and you can have a conversation with your neighbour while using the planer...

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        • #5

          Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

          Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

          If it's a hobby then there is nothing the neighbors can do once you follow local noise regulations. These usually regulate the time of the day when some extra noise is, or is not allowed. It's no different than running a gas powered mower, edge trimmer of power washer. They are very noisy so you don't use them at midnight.

          Having said that, I close the garage door before using my planer and jointer, especially when working with wider material.

          Originally posted by J. Vibert View Post
          Machinery using separate induction motors are a pleasure to use, and you can have a conversation with your neighbour while using the planer...
          That may be true if your are jointing a 3/4" edge on a 3/4HP 6" jointer. With my 12" j/p combo (yes, induction motor) there is no way you could scream through the noise for any kind of communication resembling a conversation. Add to that the dust collector, and the noise the air makes while rushing around the cutter-head. The motor is not that loud but those cutters hitting the material is not exactly what I'd call a nice background to a conversation.

          I hear that the spiral cutter-heads reduce the noise by 1/2 but as things are, just the noise of the spinning cutters and the air sucked in by the dust collector eliminate the possibility of a chat.

          A rather "quiet" dust collector produces around 70dB. Mine is rated at 74dB. Hearing loss zone starts at 90dB (some dust collectors are even louder than that). An average conversation is around 55-65dB. Hearing loss zone starts at around 90dB, but it could be lower as the correlation depends on the duration of exposure to the noise.
          In order to understand recursion, one must first understand recursion

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          • #6

            Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

            Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

            My table saw and dust collector do not make enough noise to waken my sleeping children who are both right above the garage, and even my wife doesn't think it is very loud. I doubt my neighbours can hear anything more than a low hum. I also typically don't work past 9 or so, and most definitely do not run my router or planer in the evening.

            Originally posted by raviln View Post
            Hi,
            Almost all woodworking tools and machinery are noisy enough. What are the regulations in this regard, allowed noise levels and etc. If I setup hobby workshop in my garage, may I have troubles with complaining neighbors? Our house is in residential area in Edmonton, not acreage.

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            • #7

              Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

              Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

              Thank you for replies!

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              • #8

                Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                In my neighborhood on a Saturday morning you can usually hear about 4 or 6 tablesaws going between all the yard equipment.

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                • #9

                  Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                  Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                  Originally posted by darius View Post
                  That may be true if your are jointing a 3/4" edge on a 3/4HP 6" jointer. With my 12" j/p combo (yes, induction motor) there is no way you could scream through the noise for any kind of communication resembling a conversation. Add to that the dust collector, and the noise the air makes while rushing around the cutter-head. The motor is not that loud but those cutters hitting the material is not exactly what I'd call a nice background to a conversation.
                  My apologies... The last time I fired up my 15" stationary planer, it was completely outside, and I was having a converation while boards were being worked. That's not a good comparison to a enclosed shop. However my contractor tablesaw is very quiet while running either indoors or out.
                  Last edited by J. Vibert; 06-19-2012, 04:54 PM.

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                  • #10

                    Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                    Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                    my town has a noise bylaw that specifically mentions the use of power tools (no db limit, but they are restricted to after 7AM and before 11PM). I would check to see if your municipality has similar rules.

                    Also, if you are just starting out, it might be a good time to "grease the wheels" with the neighbour. a case of good beer, or a nice bottle of wine, or something of that kind, along with a polite note explaining that you will be taking up woodworking and that while you will try your best to be conscientious of the noise, if it gets excessive on occasion you hope they'll accept your apology in advance, and you include this bottle of whatever as a thanks for their grace. That kind of thing puts them in the right mindset right from the start, and it's much more likely to keep things on a good level then.

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                    • #11

                      Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                      Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                      That's what I love about this country. There's nothing that can't be sorted out if you buy the other guy enough booze.

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                      • #12

                        Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                        Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                        My neighbours complain when I shovel my driveway after the Wheel of Fortune/Jeopardy hour. They complain about everything and per other neighbours, bad mouth/gossip about everybody behind their backs. If I come home after 11PM, they think I'm having an affair behind my wife's back. First time someone says that to you, you laugh it off and explain you work late sometimes. Second time, you explain again, seeing as they're old, but start to think. Third time, you feel really insulted, and while you'd like to tell them to f-off, you just keep your mouth shout and start praying they move/leave sooner rather than later. They are real nosey and frankly insulting with their constant in your face insunuations. Meanwhile they mow their lawn twice a day in the summer. I'm not kidding.

                        End result, I stay within the 7AM to 11PM sound curfew on any major reno noise that they could possibly hear and frankly don't give a crap what they care for otherwise at other times. The neighbourly niceness bridge has burnt to the ground over the years with their snide remarks and nitpicky complaints I just don't give a poop any longer. Can't wait til they sell their house and the house turns into a biker clubhouse instead. Rant over.

                        In regards to getting rid of sound transmission. Insulation, helps a lot. I insulated my garge door myself, and that really helped with sound transmission to the exterior. I added T1-11 siding over top of my drywalled walls in the interior of the shop, and that also helped abate sound as well.

                        Funny story again about the aforementioned neighbours. Their bedroom window faces out to the side of my house that my shop is located on in my one car garage. The garage/shop has a 2X2 foot window facing their side, and often whenever I would use my shop late at night, even though there was no equipment that would have run I could often get a complaint/snide remark the next day. I decided to place a piece of thick cardboard over the window at one point to negate the light from illiminating the window at night, and ever since then, never a complaint even if I was using my equipment at nite. My kid sleeps directly over the shop, and I've never woken him up, so I figured correctly, that they really couldn't hear anything after all and were just being the a-holes that they are.
                        Kevin

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                        • #13

                          Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                          Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                          Sounds as bad as my situation (maybe worse)...at least you know which neighbour is being a jerk. Someone in my neighbourhood called the city and told them I was turning my garage into a living space when I was reframing the garage doors and prepping it for spray foam insulation. Inspector showed up the first time and I wasn't home but my wife showed him the garage. Second time he showed up I was home and the garage was done...he was impressed and walked away saying "That's f'in awesome...I want to do the same thing." Someone in the neighbour calls the parking authority whenever anyone visiting us straddles the sidewalk. Of course, our friends shouldn't be straddling the sidewalk (we make sure now) but some people who visit for a short time aren't aware and if we forget...bang, they get a ticket. This has happened to different people on different occasions. Someone in my neighbourhood also filed a complaint with the city about a dog using our name. City called us "back" and said the complaint has been addressed and we asked "what complaint?" and they said, "are you not XXX living at YYY?" to which we confirmed. They told us that a complaint had been filed under our name and address and when we asked if there was any way to check what number the complaint call came from, they said they don't have that information. :P

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                          • #14

                            Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                            Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                            Originally posted by charlton View Post
                            Sounds as bad as my situation (maybe worse)...at least you know which neighbour is being a jerk. Someone in the neighbour calls the parking authority whenever anyone visiting us straddles the sidewalk. Of course, our friends shouldn't be straddling the sidewalk (we make sure now) but some people who visit for a short time aren't aware and if we forget...
                            I was going to mention that happened to us as well, but I don't know for sure if it was my aforementioned neighbours, so I left it out of my post. A friend of my wife's did it once, and it was only less than a foot extending onto the sidewalk, but fortunately there was no ticket, just a warning notice. It probably was the same neighbour, but I don't know for sure.
                            Kevin

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                            • #15

                              Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                              Re: Workshop in the garage, noise and neighbors

                              not to hijack further, but great story here: my parents had a neighbour like charltons, only they didn't know who it was. But someone was always calling bylaw whenever they had the most feeble excuse to do so. Well, one day the old man who lived next door with his old wife goes off and dies, and so now the wife has to move into a home. She's all alone, and the kids live far away, so my mom, feeling sympathy for her, decides to give her a phone call just to be nice and say hello. When my mom identified herself, however, the old woman must not have understood, because she started talking about how happy she was to have moved out of the old neighbourhood because she was finally away from that terrible callee family! She went on to tell my mother about how often she had phone bylaw on the callee family, and how even now, from the nursing home, she sometimes still called bylaw and made a false complaint about the callee family just because she was bored! My mom had never suspected that it was the old lady next door all those years! My mother had too much grace to inform the old woman that she was actually talking to callee-mom, But it sure was funny to hear the old woman prattle on, thinking she had the upper hand!

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