Red Deer joins the war on “loud vehicles”

Loud Pipes
Even though Edmonton police couldn't make all of last year's noise tickets stick, they're still running a 2011 campaign against loud pipes. Photo:

Fresh on the heels of Edmonton’s renewed war on loud pipes, the city of Red Deer appears to be preparing for its own summer crackdown.

According to the Red Deer Advocate, the town’s RCMP have been warning motorists of a $155 fine for excessive vehicle noise. In a follow-up piece, Const. Derek Turner of the town’s RCMP detachment warned not only of tickets, but of more tickets, if the motorist modifies their exhaust and doesn’t convert it back. Turner says the RCMP check up on these tickets, to see if the owners have followed regulations and made their vehicle conform to noise laws. If not, Turner says RCMP can issue a $233 ticket, which also brings with it four demerit points for your licence.

How serious is this for motorcyclists? Local riders are trying to make their voices heard (no pun intended!), saying it’s not just bikers that are creating all the vehicle noise. However, motorcycles are consistently singled out as a problem, even on Red Deer’s city services website. For a long time, Quebec was the biggest battleground between loud pipe enthusiasts and angry politicians, but it seems that may shift towards Alberta in the near future.


  1. It’s not just bikes, Japanese tuners, pickups and heavy vehicles anymore. It’s luxury cars, supercars, even the formerly quite old-man cars, like Jags and Bentleys.

    The loudest exhausts in my hood come from the same two small penis owners in Mercedes Benz and BMW sedans, who each pass my home office window twice daily. They are both highly skilled paddle-shifter operators, going up, then down, three or four gears in the 500ft between stop signs in front of my house, in a bravado display of roaring and backfiring. My heroes. I now understand why paint gets keyed.

    With all car makers now in a flat-out horsepower and luxury war, and twerps with no skills or manners easily able to afford a 500+hp car, Toronto’s streets just get louder and more lethal every year.

    The open-pipe Harley and superbike attention junkies are the most deserving of their one-tragic little operas being shut down. They make the non-riders hate us all, lump us all in with their need to annoy. I nearly soiled myself on Saturday when a pack of five litrebike inbreeds filtered, full throttle, through the traffic and me — already doing 120kph — easily at 180 at 11:30am on the 401. The last guy was in a t-shirt and shorts.

    H-D and superbike noise carries furthest and longest, echoing off the urban canyons like coyote howls — so I would love to seem them busted hardest and pressed to do humiliating but useful community service, like scrubbing oil drips off pavement with toothbrushes and Dawn.

    • Yeah, I’ve noticed those idiots, too. Not living in (apparently) as affluent of an area as you, they’re not as common. Do get them coming and going on Upper Centennial on their way out to TMP, though.

  2. The Americans have gone hard on this ‘certified OEM replacement’ muffler spec in recent years.
    Spearheaded by California I believe?
    Anyway, should be easier everywhere now to crack down on the ridiculous noise! Even here in Canada.
    Some loud vehicles sound pretty sad though – a very ‘agricultural’ noise, heheh…
    Not what I’d call high-performance.

    • There is no such thing as an “in use” federal, state or local certified exhaust, muffler, canister, silencer, end cap, or any such noise abatement device, because the noise controls are for the total sounds measured for the total motorcycle emissions, not for the direct emissions of a device without the motorcycle present, or for any constituent component to an over-all system of components. The required Statement embossed on the device explains that attaching the noise control from one model motorcycle on a different model motorcycle, may negate any know applicable standing to the required regulations. Any such OEM device sold as meeting or exceeding a noise control standard for the 100% stock configuration motorcycle it was designed for, attached to a non-compliant (modified) highway motorcycle, as stated by the very manufacturer that produces and sounds test the device, the noise controls will not be applicable to the regulations by the very protocols inherent in the measuring methods.
      There is no such noise control as a “certified replacement”, for the purpose of law enforcement, operational code standards, or for the purpose of inspection certification. What are you talking about?

      There are local noise control enforcement solutions, but governments by the people for the people with constitutions including inalienable rights, will not allow a person called to court for an operational public-way sound control violation be found guilty first by subjective reasoning, before they themselves can prove innocence by producing an objective noise measurement variable (after-the-fact, or at the time of the reasonable doubt took place) to remove any preponderance of the evidence used by the accuser, or used to order a motor-vehicle payable court fine as a deterrent to operational behavior.

      No, there is no such thing as a certified muffler, or a workable noise control enforcement solution. Not now, not ever!

      Have you ever exceeded the posted miles per hour limit while operating your truck or car on a public way? If you have, you have created an excessive noise condition as a by-product of your purposeful illicit operation, harming the traffic soundscape by a codification violation, no differently then a modified motorcycle. Now, go and drive under the limit, less you know you are a true hypocrite about whom is to blame for very bad traffic soundscapes.

      • SAE J2825 Standard-
        The Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) International has produced a simple, consistent and economical sound test standard that can be used to determine whether a streetbike (on-highway motorcycle) exhaust system emits excessive sound, the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) reports.
        The J2825 “Measurement of Exhaust Sound Pressure Levels of Stationary On-Highway Motorcycles,” issued by the SAE in May, establishes instrumentation, test site, test conditions, procedures, measurements and sound level limits. According to the SAE, the J2825 standard is based on a comprehensive study of a wide variety of on-highway motorcycles.
        “The motorcycling community and law enforcement have long sought a practical field test for measuring street motorcycle exhaust sound,” said Ed Moreland, AMA vice president for government relations. “Thanks to the hard work of the Motorcycle Industry Council, and the SAE engineers involved in the project, for the first time a simple field test is now available.
        “The AMA maintains that few factors contribute more to misunderstanding and prejudice against street riders than excessively noisy motorcycles,” Moreland continued. “With the new SAE J2825 standard, street motorcyclists can now determine how quiet, or loud, their bikes really are.”
        Moreland added that the new standard follows a template established years ago with the SAE J1287 off-highway motorcycle sound test, a standard recommended by the AMA wherever off-highway motorcycles are operated.
        The SAE J2825 on-highway motorcycle sound test procedure is similar to the one used for the SAE J1287 off-highway motorcycle test. The streetbike measurement requires holding a calibrated sound meter at a 45-degree angle 20 inches from the exhaust pipe of a running engine. The procedure spells out how to do the test with the bike at idle, at a predetermined engine speed (“Set RPM Test”), or by slowly increasing the engine speed of the bike, known as the “Swept RPM Test.”
        The SAE J2825 standard, prepared by the SAE Motorcycle Technical Steering Committee, recommends a decibel limit of 92 dBA at idle for all machines or — using the Set RPM or Swept RPM Test — 100 dBA for three- or four-cylinder machines, and 96 dBA for bikes with fewer than three or more than four cylinders.
        The creation of a new street motorcycle sound measurement procedure was a top recommendation of the 2003 National Summit on Motorcycle Sound, expressed by its Motorcycle Sound Working Group. The AMA organized the National Summit on Motorcycle Sound to pull together riders and user organizations, representatives of the motorcycle manufacturers, the aftermarket industry, racing promoters, government agencies, and others to develop proposals regarding the increasingly controversial issue of excessive motorcycle sound.
        “The J2825 test allows jurisdictions around the nation, struggling with complaints about excessive motorcycle sound, to set reasonable limits in accordance with the SAE standard,” said Moreland. “While the AMA supports the establishment of the SAE J2825 standard in America’s cities, towns and communities, we will continue to fight efforts that single out motorcycles while still permitting excessive sound from other sources, such as loud cars and trucks, booming car stereos, poorly maintained generators, whining leaf blowers, and the like.”

  3. If you don’t like hearing street noise…Move to the country. This whole noise from vehicles is bullshit!! The next time you or your soccer mom friends driving an over sized SUV/Minivan don’t shoulder check and try to run over a Motorcyclist by “accident” because youdidn’t see them.. You will hear them if they have “loud pipes”.

    • Noise standards are the standards in town or country. Motorcycles that are too loud are too loud whether you’re in town or country. And frankly, loud pipes might be even more annoying when you’re out in the country, and that’s why so many off-road tracks have been shut down.

    • And to further my comment, how for out into the country am I supposed to move to avoid the noise of idiots on straight-pipe Harleys cruising in the country? Should I buy a quarter section of my own so I can be 1/8 of a mile from the nearest road? Anyway, you can still hear them even from that far away.

      I understand that I live near a road and there will be some traffic noise. But there is no good reason or excuse for some vehicles to be so much louder than they need to be (or were designed to be). Note that I said “good reason”, not that “loud pipes save lives” BS.

  4. Bring it on. I wish my city (Hamilton) would do this and make enforcement something of a priority. Living about 100 metres across a storm pond from the intersection of Centennial parkway and HIghland road, you wouldn’t believe the noise I have to put with here from idiots accelerating away from the lights. Cruisers with stupid loud pipes, the occasional sportbike, pickup trucks, muscle cars and ricers with stupid loud exhausts, and also heavy trucks (mostly semi-tractors) with essentially no mufflers. It’s a real quality of life issue, and I can’t think of any good reason why we should have to put up with it.

    And if you don’t think it’s a problem, because you live in a nice quiet neighbourhood (until you fire up your unmuffled Harley or diesel pickup with a 9″ stack), maybe I could swing by and fire off an air horn outside your house every 5 minutes. Day and night.

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