And on the 7th day, he finished the kitchen
June 1, 2008 8:06 AM   Subscribe

What time is it ok to use a power saw in the driveway on Sunday morning?

So my wife and I are in the middle of a home improvement project that has, of course, run way beyond its budgeted amount of: 1.) trips to Home Despot; 2.) money; and most importantly, 3.) time.

I can finish it today, if I get some cabinets built this morning. It's 9:00 now, and I'm thinking of firing up the power tools. We live in an older, close-in neighborhood of our city.

Is there a generally-accepted appropriate time to make noise like that on a Sunday morning? Will I incur the wrath of my neighbors? Will I ruin Sunday morning newspaper-reading or other rituals?
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! to Human Relations (46 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Response by poster: Oh, we don't live near any churches, BTW.
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 8:07 AM on June 1, 2008


I would say 10 AM.
posted by sanka at 8:09 AM on June 1, 2008


10 a.m. in my book.
posted by ottereroticist at 8:10 AM on June 1, 2008


I've always tried to avoid noise on weekends until after 10AM. However you appear to be safe legally in Albuquerque after 9AM on Sundays.
posted by Mitheral at 8:16 AM on June 1, 2008


9:00 would work for me.
posted by unixrat at 8:19 AM on June 1, 2008


09.00 may be legal, but nice people would wait till 10.00. Please excuse me while I go grumble about the neighbours of mine, the ones that start at 07.00 with yardwork on a Sunday.
posted by kellyblah at 8:23 AM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


10am sounds about right to me. Use the next 1/2 hour to plan your cuts. Then, get handy.
posted by mumkin at 8:27 AM on June 1, 2008


10 wouldn't be absurd, but 11 wouldn't hurt.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 8:28 AM on June 1, 2008


10 am is definitely ok. Everyone has a neighbor who gets the leafblower or the router going at 7 am, and while mostly we don't call the police or complain, it still builds a lot of resentment.
posted by Forktine at 8:31 AM on June 1, 2008


If you are my neighbors and you are talking about today, then nine seems to be the operative time, but I think 10 is a more unassailable time generally.
posted by jessamyn at 8:33 AM on June 1, 2008


12 minutes until you are cleared for decibel havoc!
(the answer is 10:00 am)
posted by Busithoth at 8:39 AM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


One more vote for 10 a.m.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 8:47 AM on June 1, 2008


If you're reading this and not sawing away, what are you waiting for?
posted by baphomet at 8:49 AM on June 1, 2008


Personally, I'd prefer noon, but anytime after 9:30 or so works. It's at that point when I stop cursing at you for being an asshole, and start cursing at myself for staying up so late/drinking so much.
posted by chrisamiller at 8:57 AM on June 1, 2008 [3 favorites]


Y'all get up early. I'd say noon as the right time. That's as early as I'd phone anyone who'se schedule I wasn't sure of, and power tools are louder than a phone.
posted by Bookhouse at 9:17 AM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


This is like posting late at night and trying to establish the percentage of people who are still awake -- those responding may be completely unrepresentative.

For the future, I would side with CrayDrygu's scale of considerateness. At the same time, if you start earlier (like 9), think of all the good you will be doing those whose days you will have jump-started.

P.S. Important variable: whether infants, and parents thereof, live nearby. Or strippers. Or strippers who have infants.
posted by Clyde Mnestra at 9:18 AM on June 1, 2008


I'd vote for 11am. Think of the teenagers who sleep in (if their parents let them).
But 10am is acceptable.
posted by jmd82 at 9:18 AM on June 1, 2008


Someone asked this question before...maybe on Dear Abby? She suggested asking the neighbors. (It was going to be a regular thing with that guy.)
posted by phunniemee at 9:28 AM on June 1, 2008


Our neighborhood rule is noon because of one person who works nights. I bet you have at least one neighbor who works nights also. Default to the working person.
posted by cda at 9:28 AM on June 1, 2008


In my county, the noise ordinance applies from 11pm - 7am every day. This morning, I started mowing my lawn at 9:30. I was going to wait until 10, but someone's kid was outside LOUDLY wailing and screaming, so I figured that the silence had already been shattered. Most of my neighbors seem to be early risers anyway, and they certainly don't want a neighboring house looking junky like a foreclosure.
posted by candyland at 10:00 AM on June 1, 2008


As someone who's not a morning person, I still think 10:00am is more than considerate. 9:00am would be fine. Anything after 10:00am is just icing on the cake.

People expecting you to put your day on hold because they can't be bothered to wake up before the day is half over are being silly. Not to mention the difference in temperature between 9:00am and Noon most places.

If there's someone near you (like, your immediate neighbor) who works an odd shift for whom sleeping until the afternoon is necessary, give that person the benefit of a few extra hours sleep. If it's just people who made a choice to stay up late on Saturday night... let them deal with the consequences of that decision.
posted by toomuchpete at 10:08 AM on June 1, 2008


10am. My mom said we could never call our friends on weekends before 10am because it would annoy their parents, and this seems similar (yet less fun).
posted by unknowncommand at 10:13 AM on June 1, 2008


Bah. Speaking as a non-morning person, I'd be pissed at any time before noon.
posted by paultopia at 10:30 AM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


Agree with TooMuchPete 110%- 9am is fine. This time of year, the sun has already been up for four hours. And it's starting to be the time of year where it's too hot to work in the afternoon.

If you wanted to be ultra considerate and had the time, yes, waiting until 11 or noon might be nice.

Consider this- you are probably being far more considerate then they would be if they had something to do. And it does make a difference what you are doing- you aren't screwing around, you are improving your house on the weekend.

(An interesting exception to the power tool noise rule is running the snowblower, for some reason. People run them at all hours (as do I) and nobody seems to mind.)
posted by gjc at 10:41 AM on June 1, 2008


Consider this- you are probably being far more considerate then they would be if they had something to do.

That's quite a bizarre conclusion.

I say 11 to be considerate.
posted by ludwig_van at 10:44 AM on June 1, 2008


Seconding pretty much everything toomuchpete said. I am not typically a morning person, but it seems silly to me that someone would have to wait around for all his neighbors to wake up before going on with his day. 9 should definitely be okay, but I'd even go so far as to say that nobody (save the odd shift worker) is really justified in complaining if it's fully daylight.
posted by Polychrome at 10:49 AM on June 1, 2008


I used to have a neighbor who would mow his lawn every sunday morning at 9am. It was not ok. I really wanted to strangle the guy.

At least 10am, please.
posted by R. Mutt at 10:49 AM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


nobody (save the odd shift worker) is really justified in complaining if it's fully daylight.

Fail. This morning it was fully daylight by six AM.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 10:53 AM on June 1, 2008 [2 favorites]


10. 9 is 'still groggy' time. 11 is 'crap I'm still in bed?' time. Anyone who says different is wrong, or a hippie, or both.
posted by Aquaman at 11:05 AM on June 1, 2008


There is an unmentioned temperature component to this question. In general, populations in hotter climates are more tolerant of early starts.

The OP appears to be near Albuquerque, NM, where the high is forecast as 93 degrees today.

It's headed to 101 here, so some folks may start earlier.
posted by Exchequer at 11:21 AM on June 1, 2008


I have to say that there are many things (as a non-morning person) that I could tolerate before 10am, but a power saw in the driveway is not one of them. Albuquerque notwithstanding.
posted by dhartung at 11:32 AM on June 1, 2008 [1 favorite]


Our go-time was always 11 on Sundays. More like 9 on Saturdays.

It isn't so much about sleep as about peace. Sunday has a higher peace quotient due to the religious component of our cultural history. People might not even be churchgoers but still be like, "WTF is he doing out there?" if you did it early on a Sunday.
posted by Askr at 12:07 PM on June 1, 2008


The time to start running a power saw outside on a Sunday morning is exactly two hours before it is acceptable to drink a cold beer. The acceptable time to begin drinking cold beer on the weekend is noon, therefore power saws can let rip at 10 AM.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 1:35 PM on June 1, 2008 [4 favorites]


What Askr said. And then some.
posted by okbye at 1:48 PM on June 1, 2008


People expecting you to put your day on hold because they can't be bothered to wake up before the day is half over are being silly.

I agree with this, and I urge all the "dude, think of the people who like to sleep in" folks to reread the question: "and most importantly, 3.) time." If time is an issue, he's being more than considerate to wait till 10. If everybody had to make absolutely sure no one else would be annoyed by anything they did, nothing would ever get done. If someone complains, apologize and offer them a beer.
posted by languagehat at 2:00 PM on June 1, 2008


10am because you're going to be finished today. So a one time occurrence can be apologized for and forgotten if you do ruin anyone's morning.

If it were an ongoing thing, being extra considerate and waiting until noon would be advised.
posted by Gary at 2:21 PM on June 1, 2008


Nine is fine. I don't cut the lawn much before then, though I'm up way earlier.
posted by fixedgear at 3:07 PM on June 1, 2008


People expecting you to put your day on hold because they can't be bothered to wake up before the day is half over are being silly.

People who keep different schedules that you do are not being silly, they are simply keeping different schedules than you do. Maybe they work nights. Maybe they have babies who are on weird sleep schedules. Maybe they are night owls and prefer to stay up late and sleep late. It's none of your business. The fact is that it's considerate to respect the hours during which many, many members of our society prefer to sleep, which include the hours between 9 am and 11 am on Sunday mornings. Just as they respect the fact that you like to sleep between, say, 2 and 3 am on weekdays even though they might think that's pretty silly. I know I do.
posted by decathecting at 3:22 PM on June 1, 2008 [2 favorites]


Close in, I would say 10 a.m., at least.

For the record, I have a neighbor who works weird hours. He often uses power tools around the time late-night talk shows come on. It's soothing to me, to think of him working away in his carport.

If we were "close-in" this would not be the case.
posted by Lesser Shrew at 4:40 PM on June 1, 2008


I think of myself as a night person, but my immediate response was 9 a.m. Sunrise this morning was 5 a.m. so please don't go by daylight.
posted by theora55 at 6:09 PM on June 1, 2008


Please don't start until 11, as not everyone works 9 to 5.
I work until 1am Saturday nights and if my neighbours started a saw at 9am on Sunday, I would plot ways to destroy them and all they hold dear.
posted by rhinny at 6:32 PM on June 1, 2008


You need to get to know your neighbors better. Have a block party or invite everyone over for ice cream some afternoon. Setup a Yahoo! group.

If all your neighbors are old people, I'd say 9am is no problemo. Parents with little kids? You know they're up nice and early. Young childless people? Call it 10am.
posted by popechunk at 6:49 PM on June 1, 2008


popechunk brings up a good point. If you did have to start early, you could always go around later with brownies or something. Get to say hi to those neighbors you don't already know well enough to know if they'd object to your noise.
posted by dhartung at 6:58 PM on June 1, 2008


gjc writes "An interesting exception to the power tool noise rule is running the snowblower, for some reason. People run them at all hours (as do I) and nobody seems to mind."

Makes sense. You need to be able to clear your walk/drive before you leave for work. When it's snowing heavily you might need to clear every few hours. Everyone has their windows closed and no one is sitting on their patios.
posted by Mitheral at 8:15 PM on June 1, 2008


I was going to say noon, but you might have more patient (and less grouchy, insomniac) neighbors than I am! On the plus side, I have neighbors that start to do lawn mowing and chain sawing and all sorts of loud stuff as early as 7 and 8 am, and they clearly don't care if they're bothering anyone, so it's nice that you care enough about disturbing people to ask.. regardless of what time you chose to go ahead with your project!
posted by Mael Oui at 8:18 PM on June 1, 2008


Response by poster: I waited until 10. Here's how it's progressing, if anyone cares! Thanks for all your advice!
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 8:31 AM on June 2, 2008


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