An invisible danger affecting millions of lives each day is noise pollution. This term refers to any sound that negatively impacts the health and well-being of humans. Apart from being a nuisance, prolonged exposure to noise pollution can result in noise-induced hearing loss, stress, sleep disturbances and high blood pressure.
One of the categories of noise pollution is construction-related noise. This typically includes sounds generated by jackhammers, electric saws, drills and other tools used at a job site.
Although you can’t eliminate noise in construction sites, you can take steps to cut down the sound output of your construction site.
How do you minimize noise pollution on the job site?
Schedule Work Effectively to Mitigate Workers’ Exposure to Construction Noise
You can manage a worker’s exposure to noise by planning the work schedule of your staff and limiting the number of employees on-site when there are noisy tasks or activities, such as concrete breaking and drilling.
What’s more, relocating some workers from a high-noise site to a low-noise environment may minimize the adverse effects of noise exposure.
Provide the Appropriate Hearing Protection Gear for Construction Workers
Safeguard your construction employees from the effects of excessive noise by giving them quality hearing protection devices. These include canal caps, earplugs and earmuffs.
Your workers can double up on hearing protection by putting on earplugs underneath the earmuffs.
Implement Proper Saw Cutting Practices
One of the noisiest pieces of equipment you’ll come across on a construction site is often the concrete saw. You can cut down the noise generated by this hand tool by picking a blade with a small width between the teeth and the largest amount of teeth, as well as selecting a blade with the tiniest possible gullets.
Optimize Your Existing Construction Equipment
Another way to minimize the noise levels of your construction tools is to make some modifications. A popular option is to install acoustical silencers in exhaust and intake systems, such as air conditioning or internal combustion exhaust systems.
You can also take steps to determine if your equipment is functioning optimally or smoothly. This involves checking (and tightening, if necessary) the bolts, lubricating important components and checking for wear and tear. These measures help cut down excessive noise and even protect your construction workers from injury.
Consult Noise Reduction Professionals
Not every construction business owner knows how to meet the noise control regulations in their area. If you’re unsure how to further regulate the noise generated by your construction project, you’ll need to turn to companies that specialize in environmental noise control.
These companies have the skills and expertise to help you cut down the noise level on your job site. They, for instance, recommend and supply industrial noise control products that will help you meet environmental, workplace and compliance demands.
Opt for Less Noisy Equipment
You can’t get around the fact that certain construction equipment can generate loud noises. There are, however, ways to pick quieter equipment.
You could, for instance, opt for electronic-powered equipment over diesel-powered equipment. Similarly, invest in hydraulically powered equipment over pneumatic-powered ones.
Quieter processes or machines can cost more because they use quieter cooling fans and gears that function better. Even if they are a bit expensive, this beats the alternative of sticking with noisy equipment that can annoy workers and cause hearing problems.
Use Sound-Absorbing Materials
You can find special construction materials that absorb and mitigate noise. Here are a few examples:
These are pieces of metal crafted to a special shape that you attach to a gypsum board or any kind of drywall to cut down the transmission of sound. You attach one side of the resilient channel to the stud, and then attach the other side to the drywall.
De-coupling a floor is a great way to reduce sound transmission. You can place these de-couplers between the new level of flooring and the existing floor. The good thing about these materials is that they’re affordable. They also allow you to remove the extra level of flooring at a later time, restoring the floor to its original state.
Mineral Fiber Insulation
This dense and special type of insulation helps improve the soundproofing levels in a room. Mineral fiber insulation has a higher density than conventional fiberglass insulation. This makes the material far more effective at stopping sound transmissions from one room to another.
Minimizing noise pollution is a crucial part of managing a successful construction business. No matter how long the project is, do everything manageable to reduce noise during the construction phase.