Protect Your Hearing!


Noise – sometimes we are exposed to way too much and we don’t even realize the damage it is doing to our hearing. OSHA requires that all workers in general industry use hearing protection when the time weighted average noise level hits 85 dBA or higher over an 8 hour work shift.   Here are some common items that have a sound level higher than 85 dBA:  Blender 91, Chain Saw 110, Edger 86, Fire Alarm 95, Lawn Mower 90, Pressure Washer 100, Vacuum 87, Weedeater 96.

So what does repetitive exposure to loud noises do to our ears to result in Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL)? According to the National Institutes of Health most NIHL is caused by the damage and eventual death of hair cells deep in the ear past the eardrum.  Warning: Human Ear Hair Cells Don’t Grow Back!

The first step to preventing NIHL is identifying loud noise exposure. The internet is full of charts and app stores have quite a selection of free sound meters.  Second, do the math:

dBA level of your activity XXX

Less Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) Needed YYY

≤ 85 (equal or less than 85 dBA)

How do you find the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) on different products? Our website shows the NRR on the Products Specs page it is also shown in our printed catalog.  3M prints the NRR on the box too.

Earplugs we stock are:

MMM3101103 – box of 200 pair packs, NRR 29 dB, uncorded foam, small

MMM3121250 – box of 200 pair packs, NRR 33 dB, uncorded soft foam

MMM3111250 – box of 200 pair packs, NRR 33dB, corded soft foam

MMM3101101 – box of 200 pair packs, NRR 33 dB, uncorded foam, long

3M created a wonderful pdf full of information to help protect your hearing.  Read it here Life-Can-B-Loud

Categories: Janitorial Supplies, Office Supplies