What’s the Loudest Legal Car Horn?
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What’s the Loudest Type of Horn You Can Legally Have On Your Car?

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What’s the Loudest Type of Horn You Can Legally Have On Your Car?


Your car horn is a device designed to produce an electronic sound at a specific volume. It typically involves a thin metal disc and a solenoid or an electromagnet. A horn can produce a loud sound when energized and triggered correctly. However, the type of car, truck, or SUV you operate will determine the horn size. There are also some legal aspects to consider when it comes to the volume of your car horn so you can ensure your vehicle is on the road safely and appropriately. The experienced agents from Altra Insurance Services, a premier provider of car insurance San Diego residents rely on for high-quality service, discuss the issues surrounding car horn volume and identify the loudest types of legal car horns.


Most car horns emit sound at 110 decibels, but some can go higher depending on the brand, model, make, and upgraded features. The volume on a busy street is typically between 75 and 85 decibels, lawnmowers go up to almost 94 decibels, and motorcycles can produce up to 105 decibels. As a driver, you want your horn to be louder than potential safety issues when driving through neighborhoods or riding next to other automobiles.

The objective is to alert other drivers and pedestrians of potential threats and accidents. Keep in mind diesel trucks often average 114 decibels when accelerating, but this will vary from truck to truck. The type of automobile also determines the rules and laws for a loud horn, and these regulations vary from state to state.

Types of Horns

Remember to be logical if you want to upgrade your vehicle with a loud horn. The objective is to alert others and comply with state laws. Avoid irritating other drivers, community members, and pedestrians. A popular choice in today’s auto world is twin horns, including low-tone and high-tone models. For instance, some have noise levels up to 150 decibels and are surrounded by protective metal and shielding that stands out among other vehicles when put to the test on the road. If you add a device that’s sharper than your stock horn, make sure it’s solid and loud.

Train Horn

A train horn is one of the most common horns heard over regular traffic noise. It’s a great upgrade for electric cars, which are typically quiet. This modification is similar to the horns used on trains and ships. However, there are legal rules you must abide by to ensure you aren’t endangering the traffic flow and safety of the surrounding areas, including local community spots, quiet neighborhoods, school locations, and more.

If you add a train horn to your vehicle, other requirements, such as a service break, automatic acoustic alarms, and video displays, generally accompany this device. Speak with your insurance provider before adding a train horn to your vehicle.


A legal car horn can alert other travelers and pedestrians in the event of an issue. Those potential threats aren’t always vehicle collisions. In some cases, you could blow the horn to warn a driver about animals in danger, pedestrians who need assistance, large holes in the road, or natural dangers such as falling trees and blowing branches.

Regardless of the hazard, having a loud horn allows you to alert drivers instantly, keep pedestrians on the sidewalk safely, or enable them to seek shelter nearby. An emergency horn could decrease the risk of an accident, so make sure your horn is working correctly and replaced when necessary. 

Using your horn in the right ways provides a number of benefits, but there are regulations in place because a horn that’s too loud could raise the risk of an accident. If you’re involved in an accident, it’s essential to have reliable auto insurance. Chula Vista drivers know they can trust the team from Altra Insurance Services to be there when they need assistance. For a free quote, give us a call today at (619) 404-6311.

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