Noise dampening

I’m getting complaints from the neighbors about the fan noise coming out the window I’m using to exhaust. Anyone have experience dampening the noise while maintaining airflow?

Wow, is there any way you can upgrade your neighbors?


I wish. HOA has a petty tyrant on the board. Tries to levy fines for every she disagrees with.

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Why do all the people that should never have any powers bubble to the power positions?
I guess because the ones that would be great at it wouldn’t take the position on their own much less hunt it…

I have to mow my own yard but thankfully no HOA. The ones I have dealt with while working for others made me cringe. Some of the rules are very childish and//or stupid.

As to the sound, my exhaust is about 2 foot long and exits into a carport area. Probably has max sound outside with that carport echo chamber and it would still be drowned out with a conversation. It is a whine but not overly loud and much quieter than an AC unit, so I am wondering how or why there is a complaint.

Get a db reading on it compared to an AC unit, then fight this battle. If you cannot use the forge, then AC is also a no-no. Yes !?
Logic doesn’t seem to be in play with a lot of HOA, but never know. May persuade enough of the board to give you a pass.


You might be able to construct or plant something between the window and your neighbor? Like a shrub or a fence?


I used this insulated tube and it helped reduce the sound inside (I never checked outside)

(I did pull the existing aluminum foil hose through to replace the plastic one that’s inside this, as I wanted something a little more resistant to heat)

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With my neighbors I use the same technique that I used to use with my old car…

Turn up the radio! :radio::notes::musical_note:


Ok I think I solved the problem.

I bought a 200+ CFM centrufugal fan when I was having exhaust problems, but it leaked a lot of air. I ended taking it apart and using aluminum tape to seal it. After placing the fan in the window to exhaust, I ran a S shaped tube to the Glowforge. The DB reading outside went from 68 to 58.

The back of the Glowforge leaks a lot of noise where exhaust fan is located. Combine that with the poor sound insulation of the aluminum/wood piece in my window and I think that was contributing to the problem.

I covered the exhaust tube and back left of the Glowforge with a non flammable cloth. This significantly reduced the high pitched whine of the Glowforge’s fan motor. Since the hard plastic tube guarantee’s airflow, I will call this a win!

I need to go see what the volume is outside with the cloth damping the noise. Will update again later.


They tried to pull this on me:

The Board of Directors request that if you have not done so, you take action to correct the violations immediately in order to avoid a Twenty Five( $25.00) Dollars fine for the first future violation, Fifty ($50.00) Dollars for the second violation and similarly increase by Twenty Five ($25.00)Dollar for each additional occurrence.

We are sure you can appreciate the purpose of the Restrictions and our desire to maintain a community that we enjoy.




Section 2 - Commercial Use. Unless otherwise approved by the Board, no portion of the Project, including Units, shall be used or cause to be used or allowed or authorized in any way, directly or indirectly, to be used for any business, commercial, manufacturing, mercantile, storing, vending, or any nonresidential purposes; provided, nothing herein shall prevent an Owner from leasing his Condominium provided such leasing complies with the Section entitled “Lessee” of the Article hereof entitled “General Provisions.”

a) No products, goods or services are produced, manufactured, stored, marketed or sold from or in the Unit in any manner which is visible in any manner from any point not located in the Unit;


Section 4 - Offensive Activity. No noxious of offensive activity shall be carried on upon the Project, nor shall anything be done thereon which might be or become an annoyance or nuisance to occupants within the Project, which shall in any way interfere with the rights of quiet enjoyment of occupants within the Project or which shall in any way increase the rate of insurance

Wish I could, but i’m on the second floor

What a load of BS.. If they try to claim that by running a GF you are using your condo for commercial purposes, then I’d expect the same restriction for every tenant who owns a sewing machine, 3D printer or vinyl cutter.


I wrote them a letter and refuted each point. We will see what happens.

@dan @Rita is there a way to remotely disable the exhaust fan on the Glowforge. I have a much quieter 200+CFM fan in the window. I got the outside volume down to 50DB to 60DB. But want to reduce it further by eliminating the extra fan.

The issue will be the ‘Manufactured’ clause; technically the GF does ‘make’ things. So I guess that also means no baking cookies :slight_smile:

If you find a way, will you PLEASE share it here? We purposely bought in a rural area to avoid HOAs, but ended up with 2 neighbors who think they are one anyway. :frowning:


That is truly sad and yes if I figure it out I’ll share.


You might want to make something for them and invite them over to show what you do. Get them excited about it & they may just accept the noise level.

Tried that, the same neighbor complained about the noise from my 3D printer.

@scottmillersb - I will pass on your request to the team. I’m going to move this to beyond the manual, too.

Those terms are terrible, besides the issue you are dealing with they don’t even seem to make sense.

So you can’t do any “business” in your home which I guess means no working from home on your business laptop… but also it’s OK to “manufacture” in your unit as long as no one outside notices. So which is it, can you run a home business or not?

I would hope that if no business uses are permitted, every HOA member leaves their unit every time they look at HOA email, etc. They should be leading by example.

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Maybe a little Glowforge gift would win them over?