10 Best Quiet Air Compressor Reviews (2021)- Top Pick & Review

Air compressors are very important to the work that many professionals do. However, hobbyists also use them for carpentry, car repair, painting, tire filling and the like.

In many fields, they are basically irreplaceable. But air compressors are also dangerous because they are too loud. They are a leading contributor to noise-induced hearing loss in some regions.

This is why every professional or hobbyist looking to add an air compressor to their arsenal is encouraged to prioritize silent compressors. The best quiet air compressor will do its work just as effectively as its louder counterparts.

However, it will do so without endangering the hearing of its users or disturbing the people in the vicinity.

Editor Pick

Our Top Pick

If you won’t be satisfied until you get your hands on the best lownoise air compressor on the market, try out Top Pick:

California Air Tools 8010DSPC – This is a high-performance model with a durable body and mechanisms that will protect sensitive tools by cooling and drying the air before it leaves the compressor. It only produces 40 decibels of sound which is simply astounding.

Click Here to Read Full Review

Our Budget Pick

If you want a functional but silent compressor but money is a problem, try out budget pick:

BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor – This is an exceptional unit with a high-efficiency motor that starts easily in the cold, high flow regulator and couplers that maximize air tool performance, an oil-free system that requires little maintenance and noise levels of 78.5 decibels.

Click Here to Read Full Review

Our Best Pick

If You Want a Silent Compressor That Balances Affordability with Performance, Try Our Overall Best Pick:

Metabo HPT Air Compressor – This is one of the quietest air compressors on the market. With noise levels of 59 decibels, you can have a normal conversation while this unit is running. It has a steel roll cage that will protect its critical components.

Click Here to Read Full Review

Factors to Consider When Buying the Best Quiet Air Compressor

You cannot stumble upon the best quiet air compressor by accident. You have to make a deliberate effort to find it. That means keeping the following factors in mind when you go shopping:

1). Type

Air compressors come in different types. Reciprocating compressors feature a piston that moves up and down, capturing air and powering the motor. Within this category, you also have single-stage and duplex compressors.

Of the two, duplex compressors use fewer revolutions to produce more air. They also have better cooling. This makes them quieter.

Rotary Screw compressors are powered by a pair of matching helical screws. The screws operate independently of one another. They do not touch. This is why rotary screw compressors are so quiet. They also don’t have heating issues.

Scroll compressors compress air using two spiral-shaped metal pieces. One metal piece rotates around the other. These compressors are the quietest and most efficient. But they are also the most expensive.

Before you can worry about the individual models of air compressors, first identify the type of air compressor you want.

2). Tanks

Before you can worry about the capacity of your compressor’s tank, first consider the number of tanks you want. Some compressors have one tank. Others have two. Two-tank compressors are the highest performing of the two.

They are also more expensive. You normally find them in industrial situations. Single-tank compressors are light.

3). Oil VS Oil-free

Some compressors use oil for lubrication. They are quieter and better suited for heavy use but they also cost more. Oil-free compressors are louder but they require less maintenance.

4). Gas VS Electric

Compressors do not always use the same power source. Some use gas while others are electric. Gas-powered compressors are louder but more portable. Electric compressors are not as portable but they are quieter and cheaper.

5). Capacity

Once you settle the debate between the single tank and two-tank compressors, you can tackle the issue of tank capacity. The amount of air a tank can hold will affect the volume of work you can do.

Large tasks require large tanks. This way, you can work for long periods without interruption.

6). PSI

This unit of measurement is concerned with the amount of pressure a compressor can generate. You need to match the PSI of a compressor to the needs of your work. Some tasks require greater PSI than others.

It won’t do to get a compressor whose PSI cannot match the requirements of your task. On the other hand, there is no point in wasting money on a compressor with incredible PSI when all you want is to inflate some tires.

Let the work determine the PSI.

7). CFM

CFM stands for ‘Cubic Foot Per Minute’. It is a unit that tells you how quickly a compressor will refill. If you want a compressor to fill itself as fast as possible during use, get a unit with a high CFM.

On the other hand, because compressors with high CFMs are expensive, make sure you get a unit whose CFM is suitable for your work. Otherwise, you might spend exorbitantly on compressors whose power you do not need.

8). Motor

The strength of a motor is measured using the horsepower. The greater the horsepower, the most powerful the motor. The power of the motor is going to impact the amount of noise it generates. In other words, the more powerful the motor, the louder the compressor will be.

9). Durability

Some people keep their compressors indoors. They only use them to perform basic tasks around the home. But others use their compressors at construction sites and other equally dangerous locations.

For that reason, the durability of the air compressor matters a lot. You need to get a strong and sturdy unit that will stand the test of time. Try to remember that the components of these devices tend to wear out as a result of the work they do, especially the motor.

Find air compressors that won’t break when pushed.

10). Warranty

Do not buy air compressors that do not have attractive warranties. Air compressors do a lot of intensive work and that leaves them vulnerable to damage. You need a good warranty that will mitigate your risk.

11). Money

Good compressors are not cheap. This is a mistake that a lot of people make. They want an air compressor that will run all their tools efficiently but they will only buy the cheapest models on the market.

They don’t want to spend more money than is necessary to get a high-quality product. This is a bad attitude that is going to cause you a lot of trouble. As with all mechanical products, the cheapest air compressors are often the most defective and least efficient.

They will cost you more in the long run because of all the repairs you will do before ultimately replacing them. Don’t be afraid to throw money at air compressors. If you can land a decent model, it will serve you for a very long time.

The key is to ensure that you are only paying for what you need. Consider the work you want to do and measure it against the features of each unit that catches your eye. Try to find a compressor whose features are suitable for your needs.

Related: Best Shop Air Compressor

10 Best Quiet Air Compressor reviews

If you desperately require a pancake compressor but you don’t know where to start looking for one, we have gone through the trouble of generating a list of the best compressors on the market.

1) California Air Tools 6010LFC 1.0 HP Air Compressor

This is a versatile compressor. It isn’t just quiet. The large tank is highly beneficial because it allows you to work for longer periods even if your tools consume a lot of air.


Key Features:

  • 60 Decibels of noise
  • Oil-free Pump
  • 4.00CFM at 40PSI and 3.00CFM at 90PSI
  • Maximum PSI of 125
  • Weight of 54 pounds
  • 6-gallon tank

If overheating is a source of concern for you, the manufacturer included a cooling system that will keep the heat under control, allowing the compressor to run continuously for long periods without experiencing much in the way of wear and tear.

Boasting a long-lasting motor with a powerful RPM that will enhance its durability, at 54 pounds, the unit is light enough for you to transport if the need ever arises. It has large wheels that enable you to roll it from place to place.

Pros
  • Easy to transport
  • The oil-free pump requires less maintenance
  • The motor has a minimum life of 4000 hours before wear
  • Ultra-quiet
Cons
  • The handle you use to roll the unit on its wheels is too short
  • The regulator has been known to leak

Expert Tips

If you live in a quiet neighborhood but you still have some heavy-duty projects you want to do, this unit has you covered. It has the specs required to run power tools for longer periods. As such, you can work without interruption.

2) Makita MAC2400 Big Bore 2.5HP Air Compressor

This unit is appropriate for tough job site conditions. This becomes obvious once you see the cast iron pump with a bigger bore and stroke that will increase compression and faster recovery.


Key Features:

  • Cast iron pump with big bore cylinder and piston
  • 4.2-gallon twin stacked tank
  • Operating pressure is 130 PSI
  • The motor can deliver 40PSI (4.8CFM) and 90PSI (4.2CFM)
  • Roll cage construction provides additional protection for the unit
  • Large automotive style industrial filter increases air intake
  • 2.5HP
  • 1730 RPM
  • 79dB

The cast iron construction doesn’t just improve the appearance of the compressor. It gives the unit greater durability. It also promises increased air intake and greater efficiency which are made possible by the oil-lubricated pump (that allows cooler running) and large automotive style filter.

It was engineered to last longer and run at half the RPM of many other units whilst also producing less noise even though it boasts a higher output for two nailers. At 81 pounds, it is somewhat heavy. But it has a roll bar handle that you can use to drag it around. Keep an eye out for the convenient oil drain and oil sight glass.

Pros
  • Durable cast iron design
  • Oil-lubricated pump minimizes wear
  • Runs cooler and at half the RPM of many other units
  • Faster recovery and less noise.
Cons
  • Too heavy to carry with ease

Expert Tips

This unit is going to appeal to people that want a lot of power but less noise because that is exactly what it delivers. Because of the durable Big Bore cylinder and piston, and the roll cage construction, you can take the unit to tough job sites knowing full well that it will come out unscathed.

3) Metabo HPT Air Compressor, Ultra-Quiet 59dB, Portable, Oil-Free Pump

This might be one of the quietest units you have ever encountered. You can talk while it is running in the vicinity or drown it out with headphones. If it is just 20 feet away, it will run without you even realizing that it is on.


Key Features:

  • 25 pounds
  • Corded-electric
  • 59dB
  • Oil-free pump
  • 2.8 Amp direct drive induction motor
  • Rubber feet
  • Industrial Regulator and Gauges

And yet it is no less efficient. The steel roll cage will protect all critical components. The grip is rubber, allowing you to carry the unit comfortably. At 25 pounds, it doesn’t weigh much. As such, you won’t have a problem dragging it around.

The tank capacity is unfortunately low. But the other features on offer provide adequate compensation for this weakness, including an oil-free pump that requires no maintenance despite its durability and industrial regulators and gauges that simplify the process of making accurate PSI adjustments.

It comes with a warranty of 1 year.

Pros
  • Lightweight
  • Ergonomic rubber grip
  • Steel roll cage protects critical components
  • Ultra-quiet
  • The oil-free pump requires little maintenance
Cons
  • Small tank capacity

Expert Tips

This unit is suitable for people that want a small and compact compressor that won’t get in the way. You can use it in your home because it is unlikely to disturb the neighbors. And yet, because of the steel roll cage, the unit can also survive in more rugged conditions.

4) California Air Tools 8010DSPC Ultra-Quiet and Oil-Free Air Compressor

This is it. If you have been on the hunt for the quietest air compressor, you don’t have to look any further than this model. At 40dB, you could use this compressor in a library and people wouldn’t know.


Key Features:

  • 8-gallon tank capacity
  • Weight is 167 pounds
  • 40 decibels
  • 4 Caster Swivel Wheels
  • 3.00CFM at 90PSI and 4.00CFM at 40PSI
  • Soundproof cabinet
  • Oil-free pump
  • 115 Maximum PSI

Because it runs at 1400 RPM, the 1.0HP motor suffers less wear while producing less noise. But that doesn’t make the unit weak. It can still deliver a high performance and considerable durability as a result of an oil-free dual-piston pump system.

Most customers will appreciate the ‘After Cooler’ and ‘Air dryer’ which cool and dry the air before it leaves the unit. By eliminating 80 percent of the moisture from the air, it will protect sensitive tools.

If you want to know why the noise levels are so low, the compressor was engineered with a soundproof cabinet that features foam which reduces noise and vibrations.

The unit is quite heavy. But this is why it has four caster wheels. Where necessary, you can still move it to any location you want.

Pros
  • Ultra-quiet
  • The oil-free pump requires less maintenance
  • Large tank capacity
  • After Cooler and Air Dryer protect sensitive tools from damage
  • Caster wheels increase portability
Cons
  • Must be powered off and depressurized daily

Expert Tips

This is a dream air compressor for any individual that wants to work indoors. It is compatible with most tools and jobs. More importantly, you can use it in a confined space such as an office without disrupting the activities of other people. It allows you to work whenever you want. You don’t have to wait for people to leave before you can let loose. The unit is very convenient.

5) California Air Tools 4610AC

This low noise air compressor isn’t necessarily the quietest unit on the market. However, at 60dB, it is quiet enough to let you work without attracting complaints from your ears or your neighbors.


Key Features:

  • 1680 RPM
  • 1.0HP
  • Oil-free Dual Piston pump System
  • 4.6-gallon Aluminum Air Tank
  • Weight of 45.5 Pounds
  • 60dB
  • 2.20CFM at 90PSI and 3.10CFM at 40PSI
  • 120 Maximum PSI
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The motor, which operates at 1680 RPM, isn’t just quiet. It also suffers less wear as a result. You can still look forward to high performance. After all, the compressor boasts an oil-free dual-piston pump system that is known for its durability. It has a life cycle of over 3000 hours. That is how long it can operate before you have to worry about wear and tear.

The oil-pump is compatible with various temperatures and uneven terrain. The aluminum airtank is resistant to rust. The unit as a whole is light. It only weighs 45 pounds. As such, you shouldn’t have a problem moving it around.

Pros
  • Ultra-quiet
  • Lightweight
  • Life cycle of 3000 hours before repairs are needed
  • Rust-free aluminum tank with a decent capacity
Cons
  • Not suitable for heavier work
  • Valves are not universal
  • On/off switch is difficult to see

Expert Tips

This is the air compressor you buy when you want a unit that can perform small tasks efficiently. It is suitable for projects that do not require that much power which is why people pair it with tools like dental drills, blowguns, and pin finishers, to mention but a few.

Depending on your location, the unit might be too loud for indoor purposes.

6) BOSTITCH Pancake Air Compressor

This is a relatively ordinary small quiet air compressor that stands out primarily because of the 79 decibels of noise it produces. It uses a highly efficient motor that will start with ease in cold weather.


Key Features:

  • 150 Maximum PSI
  • Oil-free pump
  • 6-gallon tank
  • 2.6SCFM delivered at 90PSI
  • 79.5dBA

The noise levels cannot be ignored because they enable you to do your work without causing disruptions. The oil-free pump is more efficient because it doesn’t require much maintenance.

It is also less messy because you don’t have to waste time making oil changes. At 30 pounds, the unit is quite light, so you can take it with you wherever you go. The price tag is inviting. The unit is cheaper than quite a number of its rivals on the market despite delivering a comparable performance

Pros
  • The oil-free pump requires no daily maintenance
  • The oil-free pump eliminates oil stains
  • High flow regulator and couplers maximize air tool performance
  • Starts easily in cold weather
Cons
  • Relatively loud

Expert Tips

This model stands out because it is affordable and functional. It doesn’t necessarily possess all the bells and whistles you see in other units. But it can execute simple projects efficiently, and it is relatively quiet.

7) California Air Tools 2010A Ultra-Quiet and Oil-Free Air Compressor

Don’t expect this compressor to blow you away with how quiet it is. It is hardly the most silent compressor on this list. However, if you compare it to the average compressor, it is impressive in the noise department.


Key Features:

  • 60 decibels
  • 2-gallon rust-free aluminum tank
  • 35 pounds
  • One handle
  • 120 Maximum PSI
  • 1680 RPM
  • 4-Pole Motor
  • 3.10CFM at 40PSI and 2.20 CFM at 90PSI
  • Dual valve plate design

60dB is quite low, more than enough to allow you to work without annoying the people in your vicinity. It features an oil-free pump that requires less maintenance and creates fewer messes.

The 2-gallon rust-free aluminum tank is a little disappointing. But it is the only significant weakness of this unit. The 1.0HP motor operates at an RPM of 1680. This allows you to work with less noise whilst also protecting the motor from unnecessary wear.

The Oil-free Dual Piston Pump System promises high performance and durability. At 35 pounds, the compressor is sufficiently lightweight. You can use it indoors and outdoors.

Pros
  • The oil-free pump requires less maintenance
  • Dual-piston system promises faster air delivery
  • Quiet
  • Lightweight
Cons
  • Tank capacity is lacking
  • It moves around the floor when it’s on. It needs a mechanism to keep it in place

Expert Tips

This compressor is adequate for anyone that wants a portable unit that they can carry to job sites. It can get most indoor jobs done because it has one of the most powerful motors around.

8) DEWALT Air Compressor D55140

This is a great compressor for household applications, though you can also use it in more challenging settings such as construction sites. It has a high flow regulator that provides maximum air pressure, enhancing the compressor’s performance once you pair it with the appropriate power tools.


Key Features:

  • 29.5 Pounds
  • 1-gallon capacity
  • 135 Maximum PSI
  • Durable oil-free pump
  • 71dB
  • 2.6-amp motor

The oil-free design is attractive because it makes the unit much easier to maintain. You don’t have to worry about the mess that oil changes create. Neither do you have to worry about making regular oil changes.

The cast-iron build is strong, suitable for rugged conditions, especially with the roll cage and full-protection frame that are designed to keep its vital components safe.

At 29 pounds, it is surprisingly lightweight which, in turn, makes it easier to transport. But don’t let the lightweight construction worry you. The item is sturdy without being bulky.

Pros
  • Sturdy without being bulky
  • High flow regulator provides maximum air pressure to enhance performance
  • Oil-free operation requires less maintenance
  • Roll cage and full-protection frame enhance durability
Cons
  • Small tank capacity
  • A little big for the amount of air it puts out

Expert Tips

This is the compressor you buy if you have a few hobbies or small jobs around the house to perform. Don’t expect it to do any heavy-duty work. It is light enough for you to keep in your car so that you can use it whenever a need arises.

9) California Air Tools CAT 1P1060S Light and Quiet Portable Air Compressor

This unit ticks most of the important boxes. At 56 decibels, it is quite enough for you to use in most indoor settings. It has an oil-free pump that, as you probably know, requires little maintenance. At 29 pounds, the unit is light enough for most individuals to carry to a job site.


Key Features:

  • 56 Decibels
  • Oil-free pump
  • 1.0-Gallon tank
  • 0.6HP motor
  • 1.20CFM at 90PSI
  • 29.5 Pounds
  • 1680 RPM
  • 120 Maximum PSI

The 1-gallon tank is definitely disappointing. But the compressor has other features that make up for it, including a 0.6HP motor that runs at 1680 RPM, suffering less wear in the process.

Despite its size, the item is sturdy, boasting a single-piston design that will stand the test of time. You can use it at various warm and cold temperatures, not to mention uneven terrain because of the oil-free pump. It has its limits but, for the most part, you get good value for your money.

Pros
  • Affordable
  • Quiet
  • The oil-free pump requires little maintenance
  • Lightweight
Cons
  • Small tank capacity
  • Weaker motor

Expert Tips

This is the unit you buy if you want to use nail guns, staple guns, finish nail guns, brand nail guns, blowguns, etc. You can keep the compressor in the garage to perform basic tasks such as inflating tires and balls. It can be used indoors without causing a racket.

10) Kobalt Quiet tech 4.3-Gallon Portable Electric Twin Stack Compressor

You will see people using this unit with finish nailers, framing nailers, brad nailers, staple nailers and the like. At 61 pounds, it is a little on the heavy side, though you can still carry it if you wish. It is also a little pricey.


Key Features:

  • 61 Pounds
  • Corded Electric
  • 4.3 Gallons
  • 150 PSI
  • 1.0HP induction motor
  • Oil-free pump

However, it is perfect for silent environments because of its quiet operations. The oil-free pump is durable. It requires no maintenance. You get an integrated control panel that allows you to monitor your tank pressure and outlet pressure with ease.

It has wheels that make transporting it a simple process. It is underwhelming in the power department. It doesn’t fill quickly enough. But plenty of households will appreciate its offerings.

Pros
  • Rubber wheels simplify transportation
  • Oil-free pumps require no maintenance
  • Quiet
Cons
  • Underwhelming Power
  • Somewhat pricey

Expert Tips

This compressor will appeal to people that want to do their work whilst also having a conversation. It is that quiet. Don’t expect any of the bells and whistles that you find in some high-end models. For the price you have to pay, you can look forward to a beefy, durable unit that is heavy but, none the less, easy to transport.

Why Do Silent Compressors Matter?

Quiet air compressors are not just a luxury. Yes, most people like the idea of being able to talk and converse while their compressor is running. However, that is an issue of convenience rather than need.

Most people also like the idea of using their air compressors indoors in a home or office without disturbing the other people in the vicinity. However, this is also an issue of convenience rather than need.

Quiet compressors matter because they protect the user’s hearing. This is their primary advantage. Ordinary compressors produce enough noise to cause hearing loss in the long run.

If you can secure a compressor that produces 40 decibels whilst also delivering the power you want, do not hesitate to buy it. You will save yourself a lot of health complications in the near future.

Why Are Some Air Compressors So Quiet?

Some compressors are quieter than others because their manufacturers designed them to operate optimally whilst also minimizing the amount of noise they make. Some of them did this by adding rubber to their compressors.

Most of you have encountered units that are loud, not because of what is happening inside the compressor but, rather, because of the interaction between the machine and the surface on which it is sitting.

It is possible to drastically cut the noise produced by a compressor by simply adding rubber pads that can absorb the vibrations of the machine. It is a simple solution but it works.

Another technique that manufacturers use is to make their compressors out of thicker metal that can dampen the sound. They also include enclosures around the pumps that absorb the noise. You see this a lot in modern units. The older models are shockingly loud because their pumps are not covered.

Don’t forget the power source. Manufacturers know now that the source of power an air compressor uses is going to determine how loud or quiet it is. Gas-powered units, for instance, are so much louder than their electric counterparts.

Admittedly, gas-powered compressors are also better suited to heavy use. But it is possible to find electric-powered compressors that are just as powerful as their gas-powered rivals despite being so quiet.

You do not necessarily have to sacrifice the power of your compressor to make it quieter. Plenty of manufacturers have found a way to deliver air compressors that are as powerful as they are quiet.

Related: Top 7 Easy Hacks : How to Make an Air Compressor Quiet

FAQ

Q: How do you quiet an air compressor?
ANSWER: If your air compressor is too loud, you can wrap it in an old carpet that will absorb the noise. Better yet, get a muffler that you can place on the intake.

Q: Should you get oil-free or lubricated air compressors?
ANSWER: Oil-free compressors are attractive because they require either little or no maintenance. This is why they are more appealing.

Q: Should You Prioritize Air Compressors with large tanks?
ANSWER: People are always quick to attack compressors for having small tanks. They make it seem like the biggest tanks are always the best. But in truth, it all comes down to the need.

Don’t waste money on an air compressor with a massive tank that you do not need. Most DIY projects only require a small or medium-sized tank. A bigger tank will cost you more money even when it doesn’t serve much of a purpose.

Q: How many gallons are required to run a nail gun?
ANSWER: Nail guns are small tools that don’t need that much air which is why they can survive on a 1-gallon tank, especially if you don’t use the nail gun regularly.

Final Verdict

The list above has a little bit of everything. Some units are heavy. Others are light. Some of them excel in tough job sites and they can contend with taxing undertakings. Others are only suitable for hobbies and simple tasks around the house.

They are all quiet but some of them are quieter than others. The best quiet air compressor among all these is the one whose features and offerings perfectly match your needs.

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