The circular saw as a noise source: Simple solutions for noise reduction at the workplace

Low-noise blades on circular saws are much quieter and more efficient

Measurement of noise emission at sawing in the semi-noise recution lab of IFA

Measurement of noise emission at sawing in the semi-noise recution lab of IFA
Source: IFA

Risks of hearing damage presented by circular saws

The high noise emissions of circular saws severely burden users and neighbouring workplaces. Circular saws are used professionally at many workplaces in wood-working but also in metal-working and plastics-processing firms.

On circular saws, it is usually the saw blades that cause the high sound pressure level. With conventional saw blades, this level is always within the auditorily damaging range of 85 dB(A) and higher. The highest level of over 95 dB(A) is achieved when sawing plastics and metal, while the sawing of wood yields levels of 85 to 90 dB(A). From a sound pressure level of 85 dB(A) plus, experts reckon with auditory damage. This is why the new German Noise and Vibration Protection Ordinance obligates noise protection measures to be taken and users to wear hearing protectors from this value. Noise-reduced circular saw blades help in most cases to significantly reduce the sound pressure level.

Effectiveness of noise-reduced saw blades

With noise-reduced saw blades, high sound level reductions can be achieved:

Up to approx. 13 dB(A) with the saw idling
Up to approx. 6 dB(A) when sawing aluminium
Up to approx. 11 dB(A) when sawing wood panels
Up to approx. 11 dB(A) when sawing plastic profiles
Up to approx. 13 dB(A) when sawing hardwood edge-banding.

Just how effective these blades are becomes clearer when one considers that a reduction of 3 dB is equivalent to a 50% drop in sound energy and thus to a major reduction in the risk of damage. With a drop of 10 dB, the perceived noise is only half as loud.

A new IFA LSA noise protection information leaflet for low-noise diamond stone-cutting saw blades has been published in 2015.

Further information

from the IFA on the subject of noise at the workplace

Contact

Dr Florian Schelle

Division 4: Ergonomics, Physical environmental factors

Tel: +49 2241 231-2983
Fax: +49 2241 231-2234