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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
(disclaimer below)

I was curious about some reviews of the Wrangler that stated it had a noisy ride, so I decided to test out the theory.

Disclaimer: I only compared two vehicles, so I know the title may be a bit hyperbolic. But I hope to have some more data in the future.

These tests were performed with a Check Mate CM-140 SPL meter. They were measured in dBA on smooth roads with little wind at roughly driver ear level.

I tested my 2007 Honda Civic Si before I traded it in and got the following numbers.

2007 Honda Civic Si with 215/40ZR18 Continental ExtremeContact DWS All Seasons
0 mph, cold start idle @ 1,500 RPM: 54 dBA
0 mph, idle after warmup @ 1200 rpm: 49 dBA
30 mph: 60 dBA
55 mph: 74.2 dBA
60 mph: 73 dBA
65 mph: 74.5 dBA

Today I tested my new Wrangler and was surprised to find this:

2015 Jeep Wrangler JK Willys Wheeler with hard top & stock BFGoodrich Mud-Terrain T/A tires
0 mph @ 1,200 RPM: 45 dBA
0 mph @ 900 RPM: 42 dBA
30 mph: 57 dBA
60 mph: 63.5 dBA
65 mph: 64.5 dBA

That's far more significant than I expected. I plan to test the Wrangler with the soft top (once the weather warms up) and also topless with and without doors.

Anyway, I figured some of you might be interested in this info.

If anyone else shares any dB info, please specify what device was used to take the measurement. Smartphone SPL/dB meter apps are sometimes accurate, but often not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
FG2 (2 door)

I hadn't put any mods into the vehicle other than the tires. I didn't notice much noise difference between the stock tires and the new ones, but that's subjective.

It only had 34,000 miles on it when I traded it in, and there were no known problems with it.

Of course, it's possible that my Civic was just noisier than others and I wasn't aware of it.

I'm going to test some other vehicles (family and friends) to see how they compare, as well.
 

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Nope. My 2013 civic was noisier especially with the back seat down. Had to keep it down to get my bass in.
 

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On what planet? I know what my jeeps are, and quiet they ain't. Of course I didn't buy them for a quiet smooth ride. On the bright side they keep you from falling asleep while driving.
 

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On what planet? I know what my jeeps are, and quiet they ain't. Of course I didn't buy them for a quiet smooth ride. On the bright side they keep you from falling asleep while driving.
on my planet. Go buy a 2013 civic and ride around with the back seat down. Then ride in my stock 2015 JKU.
 

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FG2 (2 door)

I hadn't put any mods into the vehicle other than the tires. I didn't notice much noise difference between the stock tires and the new ones, but that's subjective.

It only had 34,000 miles on it when I traded it in, and there were no known problems with it.

Of course, it's possible that my Civic was just noisier than others and I wasn't aware of it.

I'm going to test some other vehicles (family and friends) to see how they compare, as well.
Cool - I'd like to see those results.
 

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I'd be more interested to see your numbers with a soft top. I imagine the hard top would be relatively quiet, at least by Wrangler standards. I'd also like to see a comparison between the premium and regular soft tops.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'd be more interested to see your numbers with a soft top. I imagine the hard top would be relatively quiet, at least by Wrangler standards. I'd also like to see a comparison between the premium and regular soft tops.
I'm just as interested!

I strongly suspect my soft top numbers will be louder than the Civic. It's still cold here in upstate NY, but I hope to get the tops switched out soon nonetheless. I only have the premium soft top, so I won't be able to give numbers on the regular soft top.

I should also note that the hard top in my Jeep has no headliner.
 

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I quickly learned to take those "online expert" reviews with a grain of salt. When I was in the process of buying my 2014 JKU, I almost didn't, because of those reviews that assured me I'd be driving an uncomfortable, non pavement friendly, gas guzzling, noisy tank with an ugly interior and uncomfortable seats. I was pleased to learn that my JKU proved to be none of the above. Although I should tell you, that the vehicle is a lot quieter with the hard top, with the soft top you really end up hearing your surroundings and especially tires of larger vehicles and trucks driving by you, but heck what else would you expect with a soft top.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I quickly learned to take those "online expert" reviews with a grain of salt. When I was in the process of buying my 2014 JKU, I almost didn't, because of those reviews that assured me I'd be driving an uncomfortable, non pavement friendly, gas guzzling, noisy tank with an ugly interior and uncomfortable seats. I was pleased to learn that my JKU proved to be none of the above. Although I should tell you, that the vehicle is a lot quieter with the hard top, with the soft top you really end up hearing your surroundings and especially tires of larger vehicles and trucks driving by you, but heck what else would you expect with a soft top.
I agree.

I probably should have titled the thread "The Jeep Wrangler can be a quiet vehicle". :)
 

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With a hard top not as bad as one is led to believe. I think some of the noise complaints come from most jeep guys lifting and adding noisy tires. It's not a car but not bad also.
 

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Good work but this completely counter intuitive. +3dB is twice the sound intensity level so the difference is very significant. A few questions:

-Where did you place the meter in each vehicle?
- In the Civic tuned or does it have an aftermarket exhaust?
- Was the sound system turned on in either case?
- Was the exterior noise the same in both cases?
- Windows up and AC/heat off?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Good work but this completely counter intuitive. +3dB is twice the sound intensity level so the difference is very significant. A few questions:

-Where did you place the meter in each vehicle?
- In the Civic tuned or does it have an aftermarket exhaust?
- Was the sound system turned on in either case?
- Was the exterior noise the same in both cases?
- Windows up and AC/heat off?
Excellent questions!

Meter was held gently at ear height during highway travel in straightaways with no cars nearby. Both vehicles were driven on the same stretch of road for the readings. I checked the meter numerous times to verify the numbers with each reading.

The Civic is not tuned in any way. Completely stock Si except for the tires noted in the original post.

Sound system was off.

Exterior noise was roughly the same (not windy, no vehicles nearby).

Windows were up in both cases and there was no heat/AC/blower running.

My current theory is that the Civic's engine was the main culprit. My Si always had a very prominent engine note in the cabin. By contrast, the Wrangler engine in my JK is very quiet. It's possible that the dominant frequencies in the Si engine note are heaviest in the ranges which the A-weighting stresses.
 

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I dabble in dBi and dBm mostly but we are concerned with dBa while in the lab or out on the flight line....

Anyways, could see the jeep being quieter while stock. At this writing with the toyo 37's and other mod's we have I can't see it. Also, you are testing a '07 against an '08. Have probably been significant improvements to controlling noise in those 8 yrs.

Either way, nice baseline to deviate from.
 

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My 1983 AMC pacer was the worst for noise - until I realized it was my ex-wife in the passenger seat. I replaced her with an after market mod and the noise reduction has been awesome.
 

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I find the JKU is very quiet up until 55MPH. Super noisy after 65MPH.
 
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