If you are looking to purchase a CNC machine, you likely have questions about how to operate the machine safely. Ensuring that your hearing is protected while using a CNC machine is one of the most crucial yet often overlooked safety concerns. In this post, we outline what you should know about hearing protection and CNC machine noise to help you make smart choices for your workshop.
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How Loud is a CNC machine?
CNC machines are relatively quiet. However, in some cases, CNC machines can produce loud noise for which ear protection would be required. The best way to know how loud a CNC machine is, is to measure sound levels while in use. This can be done by using a sound level meter to determine how many decibels the machine creates.
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Do You Need Ear Protection for a CNC Machine?
The importance of hearing protection in the workplace cannot be overstated. Whether you own a commercial workshop with employees or work independently, you’ll want to be sure that you are prioritizing hearing safety by ensuring that hearing protection is worn in workspaces where sound levels of 85 decibels or greater are common.
Most CNC machines are relatively quiet when in use. However, the level of noise created while using a CNC machine can vary depending on the type of material being used as well as the process. It is important to measure sound levels and wear hearing protection when it is necessary. As a general best practice, hearing protection should be worn in any instance where a person will be exposed to 85 decibels or more for a continued period of time.
What Other Safety Precautions Should Be Taken with a CNC Machine?
Using a CNC machine is safe, though there are safety precautions that must be considered both before, after, and while operating a CNC machine. It is important for workshops to establish safety practices. A non-exhaustive list of some safety precautions you should take when operating a CNC machine includes the following.
- Only operate the machine when you are trained to do so.
- Inspect the CNC machine, bits, and materials before use.
- Wear PPE, including safety glasses, hearing protection, and safety shoes.
- Avoid loose-fitting clothing and jewelry.
- Tie back long hair.
- Keep your workspace clean and clear of clutter.
For more information on keeping safe while operating a CNC machine, see the Ontario Workplace Safety & Prevention Services Safety Check for CNC Machine Safety.