Set a maximum volume for your headphones

You shouldn't stick things in your ears. That includes fingers, q-tips, drinking straws — and even sound itself.

Prevent yourself from suffering permanent hearing loss by setting a maximum volume for your headphones.

How much sound is too much sound?

According to the CDC1 sustained sounds of just 70 decibels (db) are enough to cause permanent damage to your ears — that's the equivalent of a vacuum cleaner, a washing machine, or a hummingbird mistaking your ear for a flower.2

How to set a maximum volume on an iPhone

Setting a maximum volume for your headphones on iPhone is easy. Here's how:

  1. Open Settings
  2. Select Sound and Haptics
  3. Scroll down and select Headphone Safety
  4. Turn on Reduce Loud Sounds
  5. Slide the slider down to 75 decibels

If this is too quiet, you can always increase the volume — but you'll pay for it later by not being able to hear your granddaughter's cello receital.


  1. 1

    What Noises Cause Hearing Loss? — cdc.gov

  2. 2

    Humming hummingbirds, insect flight tones and a model of animal flight sound — Christopher J. Clark, Emily A. Mistick