Riding Without Ear Protection
Safety Tip of the Week
According to the test labs, motorcycle enthusiasts risk hearing loss not so much from loud pipes as from wind noise. Every time you ride without adequate ear protection, you can incur more damage until finally you can have irreversible hearing loss. When the sound level is over 100 dB, hearing loss begins after about two hours of exposure, but when the noise level goes over 115 dB, that time plummets to fifteen minutes.
Even the most “noise conscious” helmets produce wind noise readings of 110 to 116dB's, at all speeds from 35mph to highway speeds. That means you risk hearing damage after only 15 minutes of riding.
Audiologists also warn about TTS or Temporary Threshold Shift, in which short-term exposure to loud noise cause a temporary loss of hearing. Repeated episodes of TTS result in permanent hearing loss.
Helmets are not the solution, nor do open or closed vents, or padding inside the helmet, or external weather stripping make any significant difference in noise level. Neither does the brand you ride or how you ride it.
But earplugs make a huge difference, for less than $7.00. Browse our selection of helmet accessories for protective gear. Our Eagle Leather sales staff can help you make the right choice.
Stay safe out there!