The Noise Bylaw provides standards for noise in Toronto. This includes decibel limits and time restrictions for some types of noise.
Toronto is a growing, vibrant city, where noise can be common. We encourage residents to exercise a reasonable degree of tolerance and to review the bylaw regulations by type of noise (found below) prior to submitting a service request.
Individuals can apply for a noise exemption to work outside of the permitted hours as long as they meet the application requirement. Learn more about the noise exemption process.
Government work, bells, sirens or work needed to respond to an emergency are exempt from the Noise Bylaw.
More details can be found by viewing Toronto Municipal Code, Chapter 591, Noise.
Noise will be measured by Bylaw Enforcement Officers using sound meters. Measurement will be taken by trained staff from the point where the noise is heard and compared against the standards as identified in the bylaw. Ambient (background noise) will be taken into consideration when conducting measurements.
Recognizing that during the COVID-19 pandemic, there are gathering limits for religious services and one’s spiritual, emotional, and mental well-being is important during these difficult times, mosques may broadcast calls to prayer during the month of Ramadan and the City will not request a noise exemption permit. Complaints submitted to 311 will be handled by the Noise Team on a case-by-case basis and the City will work with the mosque to resolve any issues.
Persistent noise from any animal is not permitted. Examples include persistent barking, calling or whining.
The Province of Ontario passed Ontario Regulation 130/20 under the City of Toronto Act, 2006 that limits the City’s ability to prohibit and regulate certain types of noise. Under the Province’s regulation, noise made in connection with construction projects and services associated with the healthcare sector, including new facilities, expansions, renovations and conversion of spaces that could be repurposed for health care space is permitted 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Noise made in connection with any other construction activity is permitted between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m., seven days a week. The Provincial Regulation is in effect until October 7, 2021.
Noise is not permitted from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. the next day, except until 9 a.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and statutory holidays. This includes noise from loading, unloading, delivering, packing, unpacking and otherwise handling any containers, products or materials.
Noise is not permitted from 7 p.m. until 7 a.m. the next day, except until 9 a.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and statutory holidays. These rules do not apply to devices used to maintain golf courses or public parks and to snow removal devices.
Sound cannot disturb a religious ceremony in a place of worship.
Will be measured by Bylaw Enforcement Officers using sound meter.
Noise not covered in one of the above categories cannot be unreasonable and persistent.
If you have a concern, consider speaking with those responsible for making the noise to give them an opportunity to correct the issue.
If this approach does not work, you can call 311 or submit a service request online.
Please note that the Municipal Licensing and Standards Division does not respond to demonstrations, noisy parties or noise from people acting disorderly, such as yelling, screaming and fighting. To report these types of noise, call the Toronto Police Service non-emergency number at 416-808-2222. For emergencies, call 9-1-1.
The City has partnered with St. Stephen’s Community House, an organization that provides free community mediation services to Toronto residents, as an alternative means to resolving a dispute with the help of neutral mediators.
Mediation can help deliver better service, divert some cases from bylaw enforcement, and get to the root cause of long-standing community or neighbour-to-neighbour issues. The process is separate from bylaw enforcement and completely confidential.