Why Are Motorcycles So Loud?

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You probably have listened to the sounds a motorcycle makes compared to other vehicles on the road. It is intriguing because motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles but are much louder.

This is why people unfamiliar with motorcycles’ technicalities often get curious about how they can produce such loud noises. Some even raise whether it is legal or not to let your bikes make such noises.

So why are motorcycles so loud, you may ask? The main reason why motorcycles are loud is because of the short muffler installed on the bikes, the short length of the exhaust pipe, and the exposed engine.

It is said that the muffler and the exhaust pipes might not be able to reduce the sound coming from the engine. Plus, since the engine is exposed, it can allow the sound to travel willingly, making it louder.

Now, suppose you keep on reading this article. In that case, I assure you that you will find the most useful information related to motorcycles being loud and various other things that might relieve your curiosity.

What Cause A Motorcycle To Make Loud Noises?

Are motorcycles designed to be loud? If so, then why

People often get curious about the loud noises motorcycles can make. Some might even think that riders are doing it to gain some attention towards it or just boast the loud sound.

As I have answered above, I think it deserves to be explained more comprehensively.

Compared to a car, motorcycles are louder, but there is a reason for that. This is because cars have a larger muffler than motorcycles. It is said that their mufflers are 3 or 4 times bigger.

Additionally, it is worth noting that mufflers are the components that affect the sounds coming out of the engine through the exhaust system.

Now with that being said, there are three main reasons why motorcycles are loud, and they are as follows:

1. Smaller Mufflers

Motorcycles are installed with smaller mufflers than cars. It is said that they are only considerably inching long but are shorter than their four-wheel equivalents.

The main reason for them being smaller is that motorcycles do not have enough space to carry a big muffler.

Do keep in mind that mufflers on motorcycles are designed to reduce the sound coming from the engine. And since they are short, they can be louder.

2. Short Exhaust Pipes

The exhaust pipes are short on motorcycles because they do not have enough space to hold long exhaust pipes. Other vehicles have pipes around 10 up to 15 feet long, whereas, in motorcycles, it is only 3 feet long.

Since the bike is installed with shorter exhaust pipes, there will be a greater force of air getting out of the exhaust pipes. This will produce louder sounds while riding on the bike.

3. Exposed Engine System/Open Engine Design

If you are unfamiliar with a motorcycle’s engine system, you must know that motorcycles are installed with an engine system open for the environment and air.

This just means that nothing is covering the sounds released from the engine pistons, whether going up or down in the engine.

Keep in mind that there are nearly thousands of mini-explosions per minute inside the engine system while cruising.

Besides that, different vehicles have an encased engine system that deadens the loud sound but in the case of motorcycles. This just gives it more reason to be louder.

How Loud Is Too Loud For Motorcycles?

According to various reports, it is said that anything that is above 85 decibels is considered to be too loud on a motorcycle.

The main thing is that if the sound is higher, there are increased chances of hearing loss. This just means that if a motorcyclist is riding on the road, then the rider and other drivers on the road can be affected.

There are legal noise limits set by authorities for motorcycles in various states to balance the situation.

If you are a motorcycle rider, then reading through these legal requirements set in the state you are living in is extremely important and beneficial for you.

Do Riders Enjoy Loud Motorcycles?

This question is asked a lot by people who do not ride motorcycles or get irritated by their sound.

Motorcycle riders are always going to listen to noise while riding, so it surely can make people curious about how they are dealing with it.

But do keep in mind, though, motorcyclists just simply love the loud sound their motorcycle makes.

There isn’t any reason to explain this, but it is worth mentioning that some people would modify their bikes just so they can hear much louder noise.

Other than that, some even believe that having a loud bike can certainly increase safety on the road.

This is because it will allow other people to notice the rider just by the sound so they can be more aware and drive responsibly around them.

Do keep in mind that people who are oblivious on the road can cause severe motorcycle accidents, according to the report by HG. Org.

What Are The Noise Limits For Motorcycles?

When it comes to noise limits, do keep in mind that each city and state has set different laws, and these mainly depend on the speed of the motorcycle.

However, you must know that the EPA has mentioned that motorcycles manufactured after or in 1979 must not go beyond the noise level of 84 dB (decibels).

This is when the bike travels above 35 mph, especially on a paved street or highway.

If you are planning to modify your motorcycle, then it is highly recommended to check the federal, local, and state laws so you can ride legally.

Other than that, most states follow the legislation that favors the Federal regulation. Keep in mind that if you do not follow certain rules, you can end up with costly tickets and fines.

Are There Quiet Motorcycles Available In The Market?

According to various sites, it is said that modern designed motorcycles are quieter than older motorcycles.

This can mainly be because when older motorcycles were made, it was a trend to have loud bikes, but nowadays, this is not the case anymore. However, this can also depend on the mufflers used in older times.

Nowadays, mufflers are made with new technology. It is explained that they have the power to be quieter for a long time than older ones.

To add on, the engines are also more efficient and deliver better performance in modern motorcycles.

They are meant to be less noisy than old engines in motorcycles. It is also worth noting that nowadays, motorcycles are powered by electric engines, so there aren’t chances of extremely loud noises while riding.

How To Make The Motorcycle Louder

Many people wish to make their motorcycles louder. Why, you may ask?

Well, to put it simply, the louder the sound it makes, the bigger the thrill there is while cruising. It also gives the rider the attention of others on the road and makes the motorcycle stand out more.

The engine sound can also give a sporty feeling even though one is riding in the traffic. So if you are someone who wishes to make the motorcycle louder, then here are some ways you can easily achieve that:

1. Aftermarket Exhaust System

It is said that this is one of the easiest ways one can enhance the sound quality of their motorcycle.

You can easily get an aftermarket exhaust system assembled that will be of high quality, efficient performance, and extremely loud sound. This can also improve the engine system and provide more power.

If the exhaust system provides a larger opening, it will allow the heat and other combustion to exit openly from the motorcycle. It will somehow make the motorcycle breathe better and eventually release louder sounds.

2. Aftermarket Muffler

To increase the efficiency of your motorcycle’s exhaust system, it is highly suggested to remove the muffler altogether.

However, according to various reports, this can hurt the engine and slightly damage it if the muffler is removed. Plus, it is illegal to remove the muffler completely in some states.

One way you can reach your goal is by customizing the muffler system. You can resize the opening on the muffler. This will eventually improve the sound it releases through the exhaust system.

3. Aftermarket Ignition System

Modifying the ignition system can make a huge difference in the motorcycle’s sound while cruising on the road.

The best way you can achieve that is by purchasing an aftermarket ignition, and you can observe how it transforms the performance.

Besides that, it will also enhance the response timing of your ignition system. With this feature, you will have a powerful and more adequate motorcycle ride.

4. Stock Carburetors Modification

It is worth noting that the stock carburetor is responsible for controlling the ratio of the air and the fuel that infiltrates the combustion chamber.

One way to make the exhaust system work efficiently is by modifying the stock carburetors. You can install larger carburetors inside the motorcycle.

There will be more air and fuel amount entering inside the cylinder. As a result, you will notice the exhaust system to be much stronger and more powerful and notice louder sounds coming in the exhaust system.

How To Make The Motorcycle Quieter

If you are someone who loves to ride a motorcycle but does not like to hear the loud sound it makes. Then this section will be worth reading and beneficial for you if you apply it on your motorcycle.

Here are some ways you can make the motorcycle quieter:

1. Check The Exhaust System

Some exhaust systems can end up with holes in them, and you want to make sure to check that this is not the problem you are facing. Holes in the exhaust system can cause rumbling sounds while riding.

It can be caused due to rust, corrosion, etc. You can either seal the holes yourself with a patch of epoxy or get it done by a professional.

2. Replace The Muffler

This is another way to reduce the loud noise coming from the exhaust system. You can get that by getting resonator mufflers, which will work to keep the noise as low as possible.

The resonator muffler is built with fiberglass and has soundproof capabilities. Plus, they are pretty affordable and can be found easily in the market. You can also try dual-chamber models as they also work well to reduce the noise.

3. Cover The Exhaust System

You can cover your exhaust system with a high-quality wrap, and as a result, you will notice a vibration reduction.

Use wraps made out of titanium material because they are likely to bear with the high temperature of the exhaust system.

4. Purchase A Exhaust Silencer

This is one of the best ways you can reduce the exhaust system’s sound!

Most exhaust silencers are built with fiberglass material, which will benefit you. The silencer will limit the gap of the exhaust pipe and will work as a soundproof system.

You want to keep in mind, though, to make sure to check the diameters of the exhaust pipes installed in your motorcycle so you can purchase the accurate exhaust silencer that will be effective and manageable to install.


I expect you got the explanation to the question: why are motorcycles so loud?

It is worth mentioning that according to some people, motorcycles are not certainly loud but instead have been modified by various motorcycle owners to make them louder.

They do not even pass the noise limit and are below 90 decibels. Moreover, for people who love loud sound also make various changes in their motorcycles to make them more powerful and increase the sound.

I have included both ways to make the sound louder or make the motorcycle quieter. You can attempt either of the options according to your liking.

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