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Hearing protection

Discussion in 'Heavy Equipment & Pavement' started by smalley360, Jan 26, 2007.

  1. smalley360

    smalley360 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 48

    I was wondering what yall use for hearing protection in your skid steers/track loaders?
    My hearing is fading and buzzing after 4+ hrs on my track loader. I can't hear anything outside the cage and I really hate that. I just bought a set of electronic ear muffs like the ones you use for shooting. It supresses the damaging sounds and amplifies the soft sounds and you can control the volume on each ear. It is in stereo so you can tell the direction of a sound. I have yet to try it in my machine since I am on vacation and wont see my loader for another two weeks.
    So lets hear it, what are yall using if anything and if you have used or are using ear muffs and how well you like them or not?
  2. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,067

    After having mowed lawns for 6 years, I always had earmuffs on. My grandpa ran equipment/tractors for 40+ years and his hearing was almost completely gone at the age of 75. I took that as an example of what can happen if I don't wear protection.

    Earplugs are alright, but a PITA. You end up losing them and they just don't protect as well, IMO. I bought Peltor Worktunes muffs that have a radio in them. Best $60 I ever spent. Mowing was so boring as it was and the radio sure helped. I use them on the other equipment all the time. Plus, with the radio in them, they make you want to actually wear them, even for only a few minutes at a time. Before I got my Peltors I used regular shooting muffs, and if I was just running the backpack blower or trimmer for a few minutes, I wouldn't wear them. Multiply that by enough times and you're doing some real damage.
  3. LindblomRJ

    LindblomRJ LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,570

    I use the foam earplugs. Have for years.
  4. dozerman21

    dozerman21 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,170

    I have used earplugs since I started. Many older guys I've talked to over the years regret not having hearing protection, and they say they're paying for it now. I'm so used to wearing them that I can't stand to run equipment, or even my lawnmower without them.

    We use the AO Safety Classic earplugs. They are only about 7 db higher than most of the good muffs, and they're much more comfortable. We buy them in bulk, and one pair lasts a day.
  5. AWJ Services

    AWJ Services LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Ga
    Posts: 4,276

    I use regular ear muffs and I use insertion type headphones for my Ipod.
  6. RockSet N' Grade

    RockSet N' Grade LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,454

    HUH? What was the question? Couldn't hear you.....I am one of the guys dozerman is refering to. I never used to wear hearing protection, but now I do.....I guess better late than never. It sneaks up on you and once it is damaged or gone....it is a forever thing. I regret not being smart enough or flexible enough to know that down the road it would be a concern....that is the ignorance of youth. It is a subject that is not talked about much, but is very serious.......wear ear protection, no matter what type, wear it! I have cartons of the AO Classics laying around like boxes of Kleenex.....they are everywhere.
  7. mrusk

    mrusk LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,260

    I always wear ear protection!! I must me on my third set of work tunes. First set i put on the skid steer tire when i got out of the machine. When i went to get back in i couldn't find them. Then i ran them over!

    I cringe when i see a guy mowing a lawn or running any machine without ear protection.
  8. Dirt Digger2

    Dirt Digger2 LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,396

    foam ear plugs when i'm running the 943 or jackhammer...other then that...skidloader, trackhoe, backhoe, dozer, etc... i tough it out or listen to the radio.
  9. Gravel Rat

    Gravel Rat LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,544

    I wear Peltor muffs they don't pay music they are either the green cups or the ones with blaze orange cups they still allow you to hear people talking they don't cut out everything. You have muffs that cut out everything you end up zoning out thats dangerous.

    I never could wear ear plugs I don't know they never fit always fell out and if I did get them to work they gave me a ear ache. I learned early on to wear ear protection I was like Scag I wear muffs even using a lawn mower I see people without and just shake my head.

    You only have once set of ears and eyes protect them you loose either it makes life miserable. Both my grandpas were deaf as a door nail from not wearing ear protection.
  10. SinjonAssociates

    SinjonAssociates LawnSite Member
    Posts: 115

    I use the AO premium ear "muff" style protection. I took an older set of over the head Panasonic stereo headphones and removed the over the head piece and inserted the phone portion into the AOs. I use an ipod to listen to music if I am going to be on the machine for an extended period of time. I can remove the phones in a matter of seconds if I don't want to listen to music. I find that I can hear the machine easily even with music.


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