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Title 18 Noise Control Code

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The Title 18 Noise Control Code is intended to control the level of noise in a manner that promotes health and the common good. The Noise Code works to reduce unnecessary and extreme sound in the environment to preserve the use, value, and enjoyment of property; conduct of business; and sleep and relaxation.The Noise Code covers noise issues within the City of Portland limits and does not extend to unincorporated Multnomah or Washington Counties. 

Noise Code Enforcement

The Noise Program scientifically measures the level of noise in decibels based on the zone in which you live or work to determine if a source of noise violates the code. The table below shows the allowable decibel levels set by the zoning of where the noise is coming from (source zone), as it is heard and measured with a noise meter at a separate property were the noise is heard (receiver zone).  

We have decibel meters that can be loaned out to help you determine if a violation might exist. Please note, our meters are only to help determine a baseline sound so a Noise Inspector can follow up, if needed and require a deposit of $60. This meter loaning  program is currently on hold due to the pandemic.

**We cannot discuss sound readings taken with cell phones apps or multi-meters as their level of accuracy is not reliable.** 

Permissible Sound Levels (7 a.m. to 10 p.m., otherwise subtract 5 dBA)

Source Zone
(where sound is coming from)
Receiver Zone
(where sound is received, measured at property line)
ResidentialOpen spaceCommercialIndustrial
Residential55556065
Open Space55556065
Commercial60607070
Industrial65657075

Promote the Common Good: Civic Life is building stronger communities by supporting and empowering Portlanders. We think, act, and partner with our communities to better understand and take care of their diverse needs. We invite you to join us in this continuous, much needed work to make our communities safer and more welcoming for all.

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