Vehicle Exhaust Noise

Georgia Vehicle Exhaust Noise Laws

Many car enthusiasts decide to modify their car’s exhaust system, but there are laws governing the noise limit your vehicle can produce. The section below outlines relevant laws and legislation related to car exhaust noise laws in Georgia.

Georgia legal exhaust noise summary:

Exhaust system modifications on vehicles registered in Georgia must not cause “excessive or unusual” noise.

Essentially this means many exhaust system modifications frequently done on sports or racing vehicles can be considered illegal. If you install aftermarket exhaust modifications make sure it does not produce excessive noise.

Georgia laws do not specify noise limit in decibels, therefore the law is open to interpretation. During vehicle exhaust inspections, exhaust noise is not checked.

Police officers observing higher than normal exhaust noise can order you to undergo a vehicle inspection to determine. This can incur costs and be an inconvenience, so we recommend keeping your exhaust noise at reasonable levels.

The following law excerpts are from Georgia Vehicle Code § 40-8-71.

Sec. 40-8-71: Exhaust system; prevention of noise, smoke and fumes

(a) Every motor vehicle shall at all times be equipped with an exhaust system, in good working order and in constant operation, meeting the following specifications:

(1) The exhaust system shall include the piping leading from the flange of the exhaust manifold to and including the muffler or mufflers and tail pipes;

(2) The use of flexible pipe shall be prohibited except on diesel tractors or according to manufacturers’ original specifications;

(3) The exhaust emission point shall extend beyond the rear or outside of the passenger compartment. The trunk shall be considered as part of the passenger compartment;

(4) The exhaust system and its elements shall be securely fastened, including the consideration of missing or broken hangers; and

(5) There shall be no part of the exhaust system passing through the passenger compartment or any exposed stack so located that any individual entering or leaving the vehicle may be burned.

(b) The engine and power mechanism of every motor vehicle shall be so equipped and adjusted as to prevent the escape of excessive fumes or smoke.

(c) It shall be unlawful for any person to sell or offer for sale any muffler which causes excessive or unusual noise or annoying smoke or any muffler cutout, bypass, or similar device for use on a motor vehicle or for any person to use, to sell, or to offer for sale any motor vehicle equipped with any such muffler, muffler cutout, bypass, or similar device. Any person violating this subsection shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

Sources and more info:

  1. Georgia Code § 40-8-71: Title 40 (Motor Vehicles and Traffic), Chapter 8 (Equipment and Inspection of Motor Vehicles), Article 1 (Equipment Generally), Part 4 (Horns, Exhaust Systems, Mirrors, Windshields, etc.), Section 71.

Illegal exhaust noise penalties:

Penalty for violating Georgia vehicle exhaust noise laws is a misdemeanor. If issued a ticket, you will be required to pay a fine, but also have your exhaust system repaired or modified as per state standards.

Please remember that state laws are subject to change, and it is important to consult the current statutes and regulations in Georgia but also your local city or county to ensure accurate information.

This article about Georgia Vehicle Exhaust Noise Laws was last updated on October 15, 2023 at 10:59 pm. If any of our information is incomplete or outdated please let us know. Thank you!