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Complain about noise

COVID-19 noise complaint information

Our noise control staff are attending noise control complaints under Alert Level 2, with COVID-19 risk management practices in place.

Contact the Police via their website if you believe someone is breaching the COVID-19 lockdown rules.

How to complain about noise

09 301 0101

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

You should know

A 30-minute stand down is in place for most daytime noise complaints between 8am and 6pm. Our noise control officers will respond to complaints that have 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.

Things you should know before you call:

  • your name won't be given out
  • noise must be coming from a separate address to yours
  • noise rules don't 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 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 . See when construction and maintenance noise is permitted.

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 the Harbourmaster for boats on the water
  • contact KiwiRail for trains and railway crossing noise.

Aircraft in flight are exempt from noise restrictions under the Resource Management Act. 

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. A subjective assessment is made by the noise control officer.

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

An END notice lasts for 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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