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Product Selection Guides

Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) is the measure, in decibels, of how well a hearing protector reduces noise, as specified by the Environmental Protection Agency. The higher the number, the greater the noise reduction. When dual protectors are used, the combined NRR provides approximately 5 decibels more than the higher rated of the two products. For example, using ear plugs (NRR of 29 decibels) with ear muffs (NRR 27) would provide a Noise Reduction Rating of 34 decibels.

*Noise Reduction Ratings are listed within the product description for each hearing protector.

Examples of Noise Levels

The amount of on-the-job noise exposure can be determined through various testing devices. Excessive noise is defined as 85-90 decibels or more over an 8 hour period.

A sampling of noise levels is as follows:

  • Normal Concentration - 60dB
  • Sanding - 85dB
  • Woodworking - 100dB
  • Power Saw - 110dB
  • Auto Traffic - 75dB
  • Subway - 90dB
  • Drilling (pneumatic) - 100dB
  • Gunfire - 120dB
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