Lots of people love to ride motorcycles. And usually, the larger the motorcycle, the more fun it is to ride it. On free days or weekends, a typical rider can ride their bike for miles, usually lasting hours. And as every motorcycle owner knows, protecting your head and body from injury is vital. This is why riders wear protective gear all over their body. However, one key body part often goes unprotected; the ears. And this could lead to hearing loss and possibly the need for hearing aids. Read on to learn more.
Why motorcycle noise is dangerous to your hearing
A typical motorcycle can bellow out about 120 decibels of noise at any given time. This is 50% more noise than the acceptable limit of 80 decibels. As a result, motorcycle noise is considered harmful decibel levels. So harmful in fact, that you can suffer hearing loss after just a few hours of prolonged exposure. Some motorcycles, such as those fitted with aftermarket engines or exhaust systems can produce louder noises which have the potential to cause even more severe hearing loss after shorter durations of time. If you are an ardent rider, therefore, protecting your ears from the noisy bellow of your exhaust could help save your hearing down the line.
How to tell if your motorcycle is too loud
You may not think that your motorcycle is that loud to create a hearing risk. Luckily, there are different ways to ascertain this for sure. See what they are below.
- Get a decibel reader and test the noise levels coming from your motorcycle at full throttle. This is the best way to know just how loud your motorcycle is. If the decibel readings are above 80 then your hearing is at risk.
- Try talking to your passenger when riding. If you have to strain to hear what they are saying then your motorcycle is too loud for your hearing safety.
- Gauge other people’s reaction to your motorcycle’s loudness. If people usually stop and stare at you when riding even before you get to where they are, chances could be that the loud noise is attracting their attention. You could also just ask them if they think your bike is quite loud.
- You have fitted your bike with modifications that are supposed to make it louder. Bikers often do this in order to make their rides meaner and more conspicuous. However, it’s also a sure way to invite hearing loss.
How to prevent hearing damage from your motorcycle
You can keep your love for riding motorcycles from causing your permanent hearing loss through a number of ways:
Always wear protective gear for your ears, e.g. ear plugs. These will block out the loud noises and keep your ears safe from damage.
Reduce your riding hours and frequency. The longer you ride and the more often you ride, the higher you are at risk of experiencing hearing loss. Cut back on this and you will considerably reduce your hearing loss risk.
Fit your motorcycle with mufflers. A muffler system muffles your exhaust sounds and drastically lowers the decibel levels emanating from your bike.
Rollback on any exhaust modifications installed on your bike.
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