To choose the quietest hair dryer, consumers should purchase a model with a low decibel output level that also features multiple speed settings and a removable filter. Lower decibel output numbers indicate a quieter operating motor. Speed setting controls allow consumers to dry hair more slowly to achieve the lowest possible noise levels. Removable filters protect the motor, providing a longer life and quieter fan.
Sound is measured in units called decibels. The decibel scale ranges between 1 and 180, where louder sounds receive higher numbers. A chainsaw can create up to 110 decibels of sound, while city street traffic tends to generate 80 decibels. A quiet whisper can be as low as 20 decibels, and the sound a person makes while breathing normally often registers at 10 decibels.
A standard hair dryer normally puts out between 60 and 80 decibels of sound. The quietest hair dryer models, sometimes marketed as silent, attempt to decrease that noise output level to between 40 and 50 decibels. The decibel number at which the dryer operates is sometimes printed on the outside of the product labeling, so that consumers will know how to gauge the device's output prior to their purchase.
When the decibel output level is not made available to consumers, they may benefit from purchasing a model that has adjustable speeds and a removable air filter. The maximum speed at which the dryer operates is typically always printed on the package labeling. Higher wattage output levels blow very hot air at faster speeds to lower the overall drying time. These models are equipped with faster fans that can generate a great deal of noise during usage. The quietest hair dryer should provide the user with speed setting controls to allow her to slow the speed at which the fan blows, and thereby decrease the noise output level at her discretion.
Hair, dust, and lint can collect in the motor of the dryer, causing it to increase in operating volume as particles begin to interrupt the movement of the inner working parts. Air filters prevent these dirt and dust particles from reaching the intricate moving parts of the motor. Once the filter has become completely saturated with particles, however, it can no longer protect the motor adequately. Removable filters are available on the quietest hair dryer models so that consumers can clean or replace this part as it becomes dirty, prolonging the life of the motor and allowing it to work smoothly and quietly.