Noise Action Week: are you a noisy neighbour?Which? reveals expert tips for living a quiet life
26 April 2010
Noise problems force 10 million Europeans to move home every year, according to Electrolux, but there are several things you can do to reduce your household’s noise levels or deal with noisy neighbours.
This week is Noise Action Week, an annual campaign organised by Environmental Protection UK, which aims to raise awareness of noise problems.
One issue that has been highlighted is that of noisy neighbours. Whether you are one yourself, or you suffer with one next door, Which? experts have advice to help you.
Reduce your household’s noise
If you’re worried about disturbing your neighbours or simply want to make your home a quieter place, then assessing your home appliances is a good place to start.
Which? home editor Liz Edwards advises: ‘Many manufacturers are bringing out new quieter domestic appliances that claim to do the job just as well as their noisy counterparts, but make less of a racket.
‘When we test appliances that are typically quite noisy, such as vacuum cleaners, dishwashers and kettles, we measure their actual decibel reading. So, you can use the noise start ratings in our reviews to choose the quietest model for your home.’
‘World's quietest vacuum’
A good example of the new breed of quieter home appliances is the AEG-Electrolux Ultrasilencer vacuum, which it claims is ‘the world’s quietest vacuum cleaner’.
According to research by Electrolux, one in six people have been disturbed by a neighbour’s vacuum cleaner, but it says its new vac is so quiet you can vacuum whenever it suits you, day or night, without disturbing others.
We’ve just got our hands on the AEG-Electrolux Ultrasilencer, and will be bringing you our first impressions of it next week. So check back then and visit out vacuum cleaner reviews to find out whether we think the Ultrasilencer vacuum cleaner's claims can be justified.
Deal with noisy neighbours
If you are suffering from noisy neighbours, you’re not alone. At least three million UK adults are currently suffering from noisy neighbours, but over a third fail to take any action, according to research by Which? Legal Service.
Which? chief executive Peter Vicary-Smith, said: ‘Noisy neighbours can make life a misery, and our research shows that people are losing sleep, struggling at work and arguing with their partners all because of disturbances from next door.’
He advised: ‘People shouldn’t suffer in silence – if talking amicably with your neighbour about the problem doesn’t work, then contact your local authority who will be able to investigate the matter for you.’
For more information and tips on your rights when dealing with noisy neighbours, visit Which? Legal Service’s guide to noise.