Noise Sources

Florida Condo Noise Sources

The compactness of condominium properties has both advantages and drawbacks. One drawback is the potential for more noise than might be experienced at some single family homes.

Some condo owners, especially those who have not previously lived in a condo unit, wish they had identified the noise sources that impact their unit. Some noise sources are listed below, other noise sources likely exist.


Elevators lead to noise from people, pets, and chimes. Units close to elevators can be impacted by elevator related noise, especially the bedrooms and living areas of those units.

It common for residents to talk to each other when waiting for the elevator. Those conversations can sometimes get loud.

If those residents have pets, e.g., dogs, neighbors may excitedly ooh and ahh about the good dog Likewise, pets can bark as the see other guests or other pets.

Elevators chime when the reaching a floor. Anyone sleeping in a bedroom near the elevator may find this annoying, especially if neighbors are night owls or insomniacs or have pets that get walked at night.

Building Doors

Many condo buildings feature entrance doors that use electronic access system. For example, residents can enter a code to unlock the door. Often, these access systems emit a loud tone when a valid code system is entered.

Condo units near any door access system that emits such a tone may hear that tone every.

Trash Rooms

Trash rooms sometimes have a garage type door that is opened by an electric door opener similar to a household garage door opener. Those units can be loud. More so, since the trash room is often connected to each floor by a trash chute system, that noise can reverberate up the trash chute to the top floor.

Condo units near the trash room or near the trash chute may hear the operation of trash room doors when the doors are opened or closed.

Trash Chutes

Trash chutes are vertical drops with access openings on each floor of a building. The access openings are often located in a small closet sized space accessed by a pedestrian door. Trash chutes generate foot traffic from residents dropping their trash into the chutes. Noise can emanate from the opening of the pedestrian door, the opening of the access opening cover, and from trash bags dropped into the chute.

Condo units near the trash chute may hear their neighbors open and close doors and drop trash bags as they take out their trash.

Air Conditioners

The part of an air conditioning system that sits outdoors is the condenser, sometimes called condenser unit or heat exchange. The condenser generates noise when the fan operates. It can also generate a loud noise when it starts. Sometimes additional loud noises occur when the unit begins to fail.

Air conditioning condensers at condominium properties are generally installed on the roof or on the ground. Penthouse units may hear the noise generated by any condensers installed on the roof immediately above their units. This situation can be problematic for bedrooms in penthouse units.

Similar noise problems can occur for low floor units on properties that have condensers installed on the ground.

Adjacent Units

Condo units can be separated by just a few inches of space. Depending on building construction materials including unit features such as cabinets and appliances, noise can travel from one unit to another.

Roof water drainage pipes that run from roof tops to the ground can produce a lot of noise if not properly insulated. Sanitary sewer lines that run the entire height of a building can produce noise every time a toilet is flushed or a dishwasher drains, if not sufficiently insulated.

Kitchen and laundry room cabinets can make loud drum noises when the doors are swung closed.

An upstairs unit with tile floors can produce a lot of noise when walked upon, especially with hard soled footwear, or by running pets or people (think kids playing, whether full time or visiting grandma and grandpa).

Neighbors who are night owls, party and entertain with frequency, or use high volume settings for TVs, stereos, or other entertainment media can generate bothersome noise.

Some Florida condo buyers wish they had better understood how their governing documents and the Florida Statutes regulate unit noise.


Pets bark, meow, squawk, run, jump, knock things over and do other things that make noise. If a condo allows pets, residents will hear pet related sounds.

Some Florida condo buyers, both pet and non-pet owners, wish they had better understood how their governing documents and the Florida Statutes regulated pet noise.