Council receives and investigates a number of noise complaints each year. Complaints vary in nature but are often associated with amplified music, barking dogs and equipment such as pool pumps and air conditioners.

 Noise example Example: A noisy air conditioner near a neighbour's window. Image:

Why is noise a problem?

Noise can be classed as offensive if it is disturbing other people. Under the Protection of the Environment Operations (POEO) Act 1997, offensive noise is defined as:

   noise that, by reason of its level, nature, character or quality, or the time at which it is
   made, or any other circumstances:
   i.   is harmful to (or is likely to be harmful to) a person who is outside the
        premises from which it is emitted, or
   ii.  interferes unreasonably with (or is likely to interfere unreasonably with)
        the comfort or repose of a person who is outside the premises from which
        it is emitted, or
   that is of as level, nature, character or quality prescribed by the regulations or
   that is made at a time, or in other circumstances, prescribed by the regulations.

For example:

Time restrictions - nights and public holidays

Noise during the night has a different impact to daytime noise. More people are home and trying to sleep or relax, so the same level of noise may be more disturbing. Night time noise is regulated, and there are certain types of noise that should not be heard inside a neighbour's residence at certain times.

   Weekday  Weekend or public holiday 
Before After Before After
Power tools and equipment
e.g. garden tools, electric or pneumatic tools,  compressors and pumps
7 AM 8 PM 8 AM 8 PM
Musical instruments and electrically amplified sound equipment
e.g. radios, TVs and home theatre systems
8 AM 10 PM 8 AM Midnight before a weekend or public holiday
Air conditioners and water heaters 7 AM 10 PM 8 AM 10PM
Motor vehicles (except when entering or leaving residential premises) 7 AM 8 PM 8 AM 8 PM
Refrigeration units fitted to motor vehicles 7 AM 8 PM 8 AM 8 PM


More information can be found in "Dealing with Neighbourhood Noise" on the EPA website, here, or ask Council for a copy of the brochure.

What can you do if noise is a problem for you?

The first step you can take is to talk to the person/s responsible for making the noise. Often people do not realise they are being noisy or are not aware of the effect it may have on other people.
It is strongly recommended that you attempt to resolve the issue before involving Council, as a third party can create tension that would otherwise have been avoided.

If the issue cannot be resolved using this approach, other options include:

If Council receives a noise complaint from a member of the local community, the complaints will be largely investigated using the provisions of the Protection of the Environment Operations (POEO) Act 1997 and associated regulation. In responding to noise complaints, an authorised officer will make an assessment of the noise and determine what a 'reasonable person' would consider offensive.  

Making a complaint

To make a noise complaint, contact Council's Environment Section on 6333 6511.

Please note: