Tyres are designed to grip the road as effectively as possible and this causes tiny shock waves as the tread comes into contact with the road. These shock waves create noise, so a noise-efficient tyre is designed to reduce the number of shock waves to make it quieter. All new tyres have a label showing their noise rating in decibels (dB). The lower the number, the less noise the tyre makes. There are also sound waves shown on the label, so tyres with a single wave are quieter than those marked with two or three waves.
There are two types of noise created by tyres as they drive along the road. The first is made as the tread comes into contact with the surface of the tarmac and this give the rhythmic hum. The other sound is the hiss as a tyre moves along the road. It’s caused by air being compressed between the treads as they flatten on contact with the road and then released.
Noise-efficient tyres have tread patterns designed to smoothly engage with the road surface to reduce the amount of sound they make. They also use rubber compounds that are stiffer than many tyres so the tread doesn’t squish as much when it meets the road surface to reduce the amount of hiss at higher speeds.
A noise-efficient tyre has one big advantage over others: lower noise means less fatigue for the driver. Although tyre labelling is measured for the noise a tyre makes on the outside rather than inside the car, quiet tyres make for a more relaxed journey as well as causing less disturbance to anyone near the car as it drives down the road.
The best way to choose a noise-efficient tyre is to check the label. Every new tyre has this label and it shows noise-efficiency in two ways. The first is a decibel (dB) reading, so the lower the number the more noise-efficient the tyre is. Also displayed is a wave graphic, so tyres with a single wave are the best for noise-efficiency recording between 67- and 71dB, while those with three waves are the worst with a reading between 72- and 76db.
We display the above noise efficiency information on all tyres displayed on Motokiki. You can also filter by noise-efficiency rating to find the right tyre for you.
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