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Complain about noise

You should know

We will not attend to noise complaints on New Year's Eve from 6pm on 31 December 2023 to 2am on 1 January 2024.

How to complain about noise

Call us when the noise is happening so we can take action - day or night.

09 301 0101

Stand down period for daytime noise complaints

A 30-minute stand down is in place for most daytime noise complaints between 8am and 6pm. Our control officers will respond to complaints where the noise has not stopped after 30 minutes.

Most reported daytime noise incidents are of shorter duration or have stopped by the time our officers attend to the call out.

You will need to contact us again after 30 minutes if the noise is still happening and we will respond to your complaint.

Before you call

Things you should know before you call:

  • your name will not be given out
  • noise must be coming from a separate address to yours
  • noise rules do not apply to unplanned emergency works, like water mains breaks
  • we can investigate noise from parked cars on private property (alarms, car stereos and engine revving)
  • noise between tenancies with the same landlord is covered by the Residential Tenancies Act 1996.

Construction noise

Construction noise is specifically permitted during the day. Normal construction activity, such as hammering or sawing timber, is very unlikely to breach construction noise limits.

Complaints can be made if the noise is exceptional, such as from rock-breaking, jackhammers or concrete cutting - but not otherwise.

For more information on when construction noise is permitted, see Construction and maintenance noise.

Noise from moving vehicles 

We don't control or enforce noise from moving vehicles like cars, trains and aircraft. 

You should: 

  • contact the police for noise from moving vehicles
  • contact KiwiRail for trains and railway crossing noise.

For aircraft in flight, Civil Aviation Authority is responsible for processing noise complaints, unless they are in the take-off and landing phases of flight (below 500 ft). This activity has to meet noise limits as defined under the Auckland Unitary Plan [PDF 462KB] and Hauraki Gulf Islands Plan.

To complain about other aircraft issues, such as helicopter flight paths, use our online feedback form.

What happens when I complain about noise?

When you make a complaint about excessive noise, we come out, investigate and assess the noise. This is why you need to make a complaint when the noise is happening.

To judge if the noise is excessive or not, we will consider:

  • volume
  • the time of day
  • the type of noise.

For quick response and assessment, we do not use measuring equipment to decide if the noise is excessive for residential parties, people or music.

The noise control officer makes a subjective assessment.

If we find the noise is too loud, we may issue an Excessive Noise Direction (END).

An END notice lasts for up to 72 hours.

If there are more noise complaints during that time, we will visit the site again to determine if the noise is still excessive.

If we find the noise excessive for a second time within 72 hours, the enforcement officer and the police may seize the noise-offending equipment or issue a $500 fine.

Mechanical noise or sound from commercial/industrial properties

Examples of mechanical, industrial or commercial noise could include:

  • a loud bar or nightclub
  • construction noise
  • a factory or industrial noise
  • heat pumps, pool pumps or ventilation fans.

Our Compliance Response Noise Team will make an assessment by taking a series of noise readings using a calibrated, sound level meter.

This is to establish whether there is a breach of the maximum noise levels as set out in the Auckland Unitary Plan (PDF 462KB).

If our requests to reduce the noise to a reasonable level are ignored, we can issue an abatement notice and take enforcement action against the offender.

More information

The Resource Management Act requires people to keep noise from their property to a reasonable level. For more information, see Section 16.

Contact us to learn the permitted noise levels in your area.

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