When is it okay to use leaf blowers? Or are they the devil? [Block Talk]

ACROSS AMERICA — Fall is coming, and with it the arrival of leaf blowers — either a marvel of manufacturing that saves hours of back-breaking labor or an instrument of torture that disturbs the peace and quiet with persistent, high-pitched popping sounds that can reach up to 95 decibels.

We asked Facebook for this installment of Block Talk (our series on neighborhood etiquette): “When is an appropriate time to run a leaf blower in the morning? Does it bother you?”

The controversy surrounding leaf blowers — especially gas-powered versions, the loudest with a Noise level comparable with a motorcycle — isn’t just a matter of annoyance. For a prolonged time, noise exposure above 70 decibels is a health issue, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and gas-powered engines aren’t healthy for the environment, either.

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California was the first state in America to ban garden equipment powered by gas. It went into effect in 2024 and California is the second. 100 cities across the countryLocal ordinances prohibit their usage.

Also known as the “lazy person’s rake,”Leaf blowers are a great way to make quick work of seasonal tasks. An Orland Park (Illinois), PatchReader argued that it was worth letting things go or moving up.

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“If you don’t like it when your neighbor does it, go ask them to stop and let them know you will do it when you’re ready to wake up,”The fellow wrote. “Otherwise, deal with it. At least he’s doing something about his leaves when he can instead of just letting them blow into your yard. Maybe that’s the only time he has time to do it.”

One hundred percent Naugatuck, Connecticut Patch concurred, writing, “It’s in my yard so unless you are offering to do it for me, I will do [it] when I want.”

“If someone is doing mine, I don’t care,”A Brick (New Jersey), PatchReader wrote. “I hate raking leaves.”

‘Don’t Be A Nose Bag’

A Peabody, Massachusetts (Massachusetts), PatchReader thinks her neighbor intentionally “waited until the football game every Saturday afternoon without fail”To start the leaf blower. “He just moved,”She wrote. “Yay.”

Several people said it’s not worth squabbling about.

A Patch Middletown (New Jersey), said she’s “glad people are taking care of their property,”They also claimed that their complaints about their method are similar to “when people complain about the garbage truck [but are] grateful when they show up.”

“I don’t care when my neighbors run their leaf blower, mower or snow blower,”A Malden (Massachusetts) PatchReader comments “Not everyone has the same working schedule. Worry about yourself and don’t be a nose bag. Too many people in other people’s business these days.”

A Joliet (Illinois) PatchReader stated that leaf blowers are frequently used by people. “not my business or my concern,”He explained that if the noise is bothersome, you can simply close the windows and turn on a fan.

“People got to do what they got to do when they got to do it,”The person continued. “Not everybody works 9 to 5, not everybody’s off on weekends. And it’s not like your average leaf blower is that loud anyway.”

‘Worst Sound In The World’

Harrumph.It depends.

“It is pretty loud and obnoxious,”Another Joliet Patch reader disagreed.

“It’s literally the worst sound in the world to me, no matter what time of day,”A Patch Middletown (New Jersey),Reader wrote.

“Most annoying thing in the world,”A Stratford, Connecticut, PatchReader said. “It’s all day, every day, nonstop.”

One leaf blower may be used by a neighbor, but that is okay, a Peabody Patch reader observed. “team of professional landscapers”It is not a good idea to use loud leaf blowers. “obnoxious” “should be restricted.”

Learn more about the Noise Ordinance

A Naugatuck, Connecticut Patch reader was among several who pointed out that cities, towns, villages and townships have noise ordinances spelling out when it’s acceptable to operate leaf blowers and other loud equipment. Some allow it as early as 7 a.m.

Another Naugatuck Patch reader noted there’s “no way”7 a.m. “reasonable” time. Start at 9 a.m. “If you must,”The person said, adding: “Not everyone is a morning person. I would check with neighbors.”

A Plymouth Meeting-Whitemarsh, Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania). PatchHis ordinance allows noise after 7:30 AM in his town. “so I suppose you could technically start then.”

“But it’s really case-by-case, depending on your neighbors,”He continued. “If they have young kids — or older or sick folks — you might want to wait a little.”

As a matter albstverständlich, a Doylestown, Pennsylvania, PatchReader says he waits till Sunday morning at least eight or nine o’clock in the morning before starting any power equipment. Before he turns on any power equipment.

No, no. Lindenhurst (New York) PatchReader wrote. On weekends, don’t start leaf blowers until at last 10 a.m.

This may have been written in Lindenhurst Patch by another Lindenhurst Patch reader. “When I have the time — 6 a.m, 6 p.m. — whenever.”

“Is there a good time?”A Naperville (Illinois) PatchReader suggested that each person’s personal circumstances determine when they should tend to their lawn tasks.

“With a lot of people working from home, I am not sure convenient hours are a thing anymore, for any noisy yard work,”The person wrote.

This compromise was offered by a North Fork Patch, New York reader — after 8 a.m Monday-Friday, after 9 a.m. on Saturdays and “never on a Sunday”?

If you are able to make it by 10 a.m. Sunday and Saturday, a Middletown Patch reader can join you. “My neighbor has a lawn care guy come on Sunday — any time, it’s annoying,”She spoke.

“Anytime you want as far as I’m concerned,”A Patch for Toms River (New Jersey).Reader wrote. “If it wakes me up, do you want to know what I do? I go back to sleep.”

‘Leave The Leaves’

A Marblehead (Massachusetts) Patch reader said he’s “not against”He is not a leaf blower, however “against quiet morning and evening deck time on weekends and holidays.”

This statement may not be agreed to by all readers. These are Forbidden leaf blowers

“Can’t you just rake?”Another Marblehead Patch reader contacted me.

Based on the comments made on the Marblehead Patch facebook page, there are some opinions about leaf blowers that people in this area have.

Another Marblehead Patch reader claimed she objects “when they blow the dirt, sand and leaves into my yard, sidewalk, deck, stairs — usually after we just swept or painted.”

“They don’t do any good,”One more Marblehead reader chimed-in. “They blow dirt around, cause pollution and noise.”

Stratford Patch reader emphasized that careless operators are the problem. “I don’t like it when they blow stuff in the street,”She wrote.

A Doylestown Patch reader pointed this out: Noisy, gasoline-powered leaf blowers pile ontop of each other.

“Noise pollution and pollution pollution,”She wrote. “What’s not to like? (Not.) Battery powered are better, good old-fashioned raking and sweeping are best.”

“ ‘Leaving the leaves’ is even better, as many insects beneficial to our ecosystem winter over under them,”A Plymouth Meeting-Whitemarsh Patch pointed this out. “Because of this, they also provide food for birds, as you’ll often see them picking through the leaves.”

Block Talk

Block Talk is a Patch article that provides real-world advice on how readers can solve common neighborhood problems. If you have a neighborhood etiquette question or problem you’d like for us to consider, email [email protected]Block Talk is the subject line.

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Is it OK to Use Leaf Blowers? Or are they the devil? [Block Talk]

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