There’s not much better on a nice day than opening the car windows or putting down the top on a convertible. However, precautions should be taken to avoid harming your hearing at the same time while enjoying the wind in your hair on the open road. According to a Better Hearing Institute online article, recent tests were conducted for driving different types of convertibles at highway speeds as it relates to potential harm to hearing. The finding indicated that 80% of the cars produced noise exposure of 85 decibels, a level harmful to hearing if sustained for a lengthy period of time.
Additionally, this sound level could be greatly amplified to much more severe levels when other external noise sources existed, such as the noises from close car and motorcycle traffic. Additionally, the 85 decibel noise measurement didn’t include sounds produced within the car interior like the radio and air conditioning. Since these external and internal sounds are usually prevalent at some degree, the noise exposure threat is usually much higher than the already harmful 85 decibels.
While we don’t suggest not enjoying a convertible ride on a nice day, we do agree with the article’s recommendation to not drive for long stretches with your convertible or windows down, especially at highway speeds. By following these simple suggestions, one may be able to prevent exposure to harmful sounds and avoid noise induced hearing loss difficulties in the future. If you have any further questions regarding this topic feel free to post your comment below or submit your information on our Contact Us page.
Protect your hearing and enjoy the ride.
Hearing Plus LLC
Patricia Larson Shields, AuD FAAA MACCCSP/L is a doctor of audiology with her degree from The School of Audiology of the Pennsylvania College of Optometry in February, 2003. She has been in business in Mitchell, SD since September, 1991.