10 Best Quiet Air Compressors For Your Home Garage

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Silent Home Hub Quiet Air Compressors

Air compressors are a great alternative to electric tools because they use more torque and power. 

They can be used for air tools in a variety of jobs around the house, garage, construction, or industrial projects. The only problem? Noise. 

These bulky machines pack punches of motor noise and can be irritating at times. In this guide, I’ve compiled 10 of the quietest air compressors. In the later sections, I’ll share with you how to choose the best air compressor while reducing any factors that contribute to noise too.

Our Top Quiet Air Compressors

Table of Contents

Dimensions: 20 x 18 x 18.75 inches
CFM: 4.8 40 PSI and 4.2 at 90 PSI
Horse power: 2.1

Price: $$$
Rating: 4 out of 5
Noise level: 79 decibels

Makita MAC2400 Air Compressor

The Makita MAC2400 air compressor has a cast iron pump with Big Bore cylinder and has enough power for two nailers. Its piston engineered design delivers a quick recovery time.

The 4.2 twin gallon tank can sustain pressures up to 130 PSI when in operation and delivers air at 4.8 and 4.2  CFM at 40 and 90 PS, respectively. That’s enough to power paint spray guns and nailers.

It has a built-in thermal overload protector, which is a nice add on. Its roll cage design also keeps it safe from jobsite mishaps.

This quiet air compressor is oil lubricated, but it is still easy to maintain thanks to the oil drain and oil glass. The oil in this air compressor is used as lubrication, cooling the pump.

This quiet machine also carries a cast-iron cylinder and a larger bore that, in addition to increasing compression and hastening recovery time, keeps it quiet.

Its weight, quality in finish and components make this a reliable, industrial duty air compressor.

Although, it’s definitely on the heavy side at 77lbs, but that isn’t too much of a bother.

| PROS

  • High CFM rating
  • Oil sight glass
  • Cast iron design
  • Built-in thermal overload protector
  • Quick recovery time
  • High quality finish

| CONS

  • Heavy
  • Pricey
  • Not oil-free
  • Extension cables are specific

Dimensions: 20 x 17 x 23 inches
CFM: 3.3 at 40 PSI and 2.4 at 90 PSI
Horse power: 1.0

Price: $$
Rating: 3.9 out of 5
Noise level: 54 decibels

Briggs & Stratton Quiet Tech Air Compressor

This quiet air compressor claims to be 80% quieter than its predecessors of the same brand. 

This machine features a four pole induction motor that runs at only 1700 RPM. That and the addition of two air pumps allow air to flow continuously, which makes for a very quiet air compressor. 

The Quiet Power Technology, or QPT, also extends motor life to three times longer than the normal air compressor. This guarantees the user that it can run to finish the job and the next jobs scheduled after it. 

Additionally, it has an oil-free pump, so little maintenance is required. To note, maximum pressure is over 120 PSI.

The vibration of this ultra quiet and oil free air compressor is also limited, keeping it stable and provides a longer unit life.

Since the compressor has a lower draw, it has higher energy efficiency. The motor also requires a lower amperage setting and runs solely on alternating current.

It has three tank sizes, 1.8, 4, and 4.5 gallons and is a relatively heavy air compressor, weighing 61 pounds or the largest tank size. It is still portable, but not top of the line. Therefore, it’s recommended for home use.

| PROS

  • Vertical tank size
  • Limited vibrations
  • Easy to fix
  • Motor life 3x longer than most air compressors
  • Energy-efficient
  • Reduced maintenance needed

| CONS

  • Poor warranty
  • Leaky air regulator

Dimensions: 18.9 x 17.3 x 22.6 inches
CFM: 2.5 at 90 PSI
Horse power: 2.0

Price: $
Rating: 4 out of 5
Noise Level: 68 decibels

Campbell Hausfeld Air Compressor

This quiet air compressor is a 6 Gallon portable air compressor designed vertically to conserve space. It comes with an induction motor and is designed more for the DIY enthusiast or weekend home use.

The compressor is ideal for inflation, painting, stapling and nailing, which are usually quite loud machine jobs. However, the sound this machine makes is at around 68 decibels, making it a relatively quiet air compressor.

It has an oil free pump to keep it low maintenance, no need to check on it before every use.

It can withstand pressure over 120 PSI and is perfect for a wide range of home workshop projects thanks to the maximum pressure of 150 PSI and delivery of 2.4 CFM at 90 PSI.

It is user-friendly and has a control panel that allows complete control of air manipulation.

With steel handles and large wheels, it makes this pancake air compressor portable. Finally, the power source is corded electric.

| PROS

  • Reliable
  • Compact
  • Low maintenance
  • Ideal for DIY enthusiasts
  • Great for a wide range of home workshop projects
  • User-friendly

| CONS

  • Heavy
  • Not ideal for large machine projects

Dimensions: 18.5 x 12 x 13.5 inches
CFM: 3.10 at 40 PSI
Horse power: 2.0

Price: $$
Rating: 4.0 out of 5
Noise level: 60 decibels

California Air Tools 2010A Air Compressor

California Air Tools seem to have just about every compressor available for anyone who needs a compressor. This air compressor is known as ultra-quiet with a sound level registering at only 60 decibels.

This quiet air compressor is portable and weighs only 35 lbs. However, don’t be fooled into thinking you have to sacrifice quality for convenience. Its maximum CFM is 2.20 at 90 PSI, so it can be used with a nailer for roofing and a wrench.

It has a 2.0 HP motor that operates at 1680 RPM, which creates less noise and less wear

The pistons are dual pumped and oil free, which entails it to have high performance and makes it durable. Additionally, this quiet air compressor is designed to extend its life cycle to 3000 plus hours comparable to other air compressors 500 hours or less. 

Its oil-free pump feature not only makes it easy to clean and maintain – no need for a daily check up – but makes it suitable for all kinds of temperatures and uneven terrain.

The 2 gallon aluminium tank fills up in less than a minute. This air compressor tank is lightweight and is made of aluminium and rust- free. It is ideal for indoor jobs where noise would be a major concern.

| PROS

  • Easy to use
  • Trusted brand
  • Quick tank refill
  • Durable; less wear and tear
  • Quiet operation

| CONS

  • Bad customer service
  • Short plug wire

Dimensions: 12 x 26 x 21 inches
CFM: 3.3 at 40 PSI
Horse power: 1.0

Price: $$
Rating: 4.0 out of 5
Noise level: 65 decibels

Kobalt Quiet Tech Electric Twin Stack Air Compressor

First things first, let’s talk about the control panel. It is actually a sight to behold as the gauges, buttons, and knobs are big. 

Those with poor eyesight will not have difficulty in looking for the gauge for either tool or tank. The big red on-and-off button is on the top of the unit and very hard to miss.

The tool regulator knob also has a good bit of resistance to give it that quality feel, which is always a good bonus when buying affordable tools. Just because the price is cheap does not mean it has to feel cheap, right?

For portability, it comes with solid, sturdy plastic wheels and a nicely designed handle. 

It is made of metal – not plastic – and is retractable when not in use. There is also a nice top grip for easy handling when moving this machine from place to place.

The twin tanks are stacked on top of each other, so they take up less space. They can hold up to 4.30 gallons of air, so there will be no need to constantly wait for air to refill.

The motor’s sound is within the conversational sound range, but if it is turned on and two people are talking to each other, there is no need to shout or raise your voice.

The motor is powered by a 120-voltage 1-horsepower induction motor and comes with two oil free pumps.  So, there is no need to run the compressor with low oil and no fear of burning out the motor, which can lead to a plethora of problems. 

Its maximum PSI is 125 with a CFM of 3.3 at 40 PSI. This can be used with a framing nailer, finish nailer, or a brad nailer. 

| PROS

  • Big tank
  • Space saver
  • Decent CFM
  • Easy handling
  • Great for continuous work

| CONS

  • Has tendency to overheat
  • Power is underwhelming

Dimensions: 17 x 16 x 15 inches
CFM: 2.35 at 90 PSI
Horse power: 1.0

Price: $$
Rating: 4.0 out of 5
Noise level: 60 decibels

Rolair JC10 Air Compressor

This is another quiet air compressor with a noise level not louder than standard conversation. 

It has an oil free pump and 1HP air compressor, providing reduced maintenance and downtime. Its motor goes at 1725 RPM and is cast in an aluminium cylinder.

It has a small tank capacity of 2.5 Gallons, but it makes up for this by the speedy recovery time of 11 seconds. 

The neatest thing about this air compressor is the fact that most Rolair compressors are built for professional use. Not only are they tough, quiet, and produce a lot of power for their size, but they are built to withstand all the abuse a compressor would have to take at a job site.

It has special features like an unloading valve which drops the air compressor head pressure to zero after it comes up to pressure. 

This allows unloading to begin and preserves the life of the air compressor and motor.

The air compressor also comes with double isolation. Both the frame and the compressor itself has rubber, which transfers less vibration onto the floor. The vibrations are a main cause for its sound.

Vibrations on this quiet air compressor are less detectable on solid floors, like concrete. On wooden floors, it can be noticeable, but not enough to be objectionable. 

A user mentioned that bolts and fittings have a tendency to get loose. So, like the manual instructs, it is best to check the air filter weekly. Also, its roll cage design protects the machine motor, pump, and makes it easy to carry.

This air compressor may not be built to withstand drastic temperature changes. So, if you are planning to go from indoors to outdoors in the winter, it would be best to check for any loose bolts.

| PROS

  • Quick recovery time
  • Great performance
  • Long service life
  • Less downtime
  • Rubber frame reduces vibrations and less noise
  • Easy transport

| CONS

  • Temperature sensitive
  • Bolts tend to loosen – check on them as often as possible

Dimensions: 17 x 17 x 20 inches
CFM: 2.35 at 90 PSI
Horse power: 1.0

Price: $$$
Rating: 3.7 out of 5
Noise level: 60 decibels

California Air Tools 4610A Ultra Quiet Air Compressor

This air compressor has the same specs as the aforementioned ones: it is ultra quiet, with sounds registering at 60db, its oil free dual pump system is high performance, durable and allows it to work in different temperatures and terrains.

The key selling point of this quiet air compressor is not the powerful 1.0 HP motor that operates at 1680 RPM creating less noise and less wear, but it is the 4.6 gallon rust-resistant twin aluminium air tank.

The control panel on this air compressor allows you to use two tools at once, since it comes with 2–1/4” quick release connectors.

This air compressor is ideal for trim work, flooring, nailing, and has even been used in healthcare settings.

| PROS

  • Quick tank refill
  • Moderate tank size
  • Gauge easy to read
  • Large capacity & rust-resistant

| CONS

  • Customer service
  • Reportedly poor quality

Dimensions: 12.5 x 14.7 x 14.75 inches
CFM: 1.20 @ 90 PSI
Horse power: 0.6

Price: $$
Rating: 3.6 out of 5
Noise level: 60 decibels

CALIFORNIA AIR TOOLS 1P1060S Air Compressor

This air compressor is possibly the quietest in the industry, with sound levels registering at only 56 decibels. Not only is it quiet, but lightweight, too. The 1-gallon steel air tank weighs only 29.5lbs.

The motor runs at 0.6HP at 1680RPM, still creating less noise and less wear. Even if it’s lightweight, this quiet air compressor is high performance and durable.

Its oil-free pump feature not only makes it easy to clean and maintain, but makes it suitable for all kinds of temperatures and uneven terrain.

The Oil Free Single Piston pump has a life cycle of 3000 hours, comparable to other air compressors with shorter life cycles of 250 hours before wear.

The 1P1060S air compressor produces 1.2 CFM at a pressure of 90 PSI. This allows you to use this air compressor for staple guns, various types of nail guns, airbrushes, and blowguns. The air compressor is also ideal for garage use and perfect for inflating beds, sports balls, toys, and tires making it a versatile tool for indoor work.

| PROS

  • Quiet operation
  • Great for indoor work
  • Easy cleaning
  • 3,000 hours life cycle
  • Can handle all kinds of temperature and uneven terrain

| CONS

  • Customer service
  • Low cubic feet per minute

Dimensions: 14 x 14 x 13.5 inches
CFM: 0.8 at 90 PSI
Horse power: 1.0

Price: $$
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Noise level: 59 decibels

Hitachi EC28M Air Compressor

This air compressor is known to be ultra quiet since it is only 59 dB. It is so quiet that two people can have a normal conversation indoors while the air compressor is cycling as the sound is barely noticeable. As evidence points,  a user noted this quiet air compressor sounds like it is humming.

This ultra quiet and oil free air compressor is durable and requires little to no maintenance.

The stainless steel tank air compressor has a braided discharge hose that is resistant to corrosion and the steel cage roll is protected by a rubber grip.

This quiet air compressor may not be built for heavy duty work, but for small demands this small, portable air compressor is definitely a winner.

| PROS

  • Compact design
  • Very quiet
  • Durable
  • Corrosion-resistant

| CONS

  • Low CFM rating
  • Mixed user reviews

Dimensions: 20.5 x 15.8 x 10.8 inches
CFM: 0.75
Horse power: 0.3

Price: $$
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Noise level: 71 decibels

Dewalt D55140 1-Gallon Air Compressor

This is definitely on the louder side of the quiet air compressor list, as it registers at over 70 decibels, but it does come with other features that make it hard to discount.

It is equipped with an oil-free, long-lasting pump for easy, maintenance-free operations. There is no need to check or refill the pump and eliminates the possibility of oil spills or transfers on your work surface.

 Another feature is the fact that it is only 24lbs and a width of around 9 inches, making it handy to bring around.

The DD55140 has a one-gallon tank and a 2.6 motor that delivers an admittedly low CFM, 0.75 at 90 PSI. However, its maximum PSI is 135, which makes for good performance and quick recovery time.

This product is certainly affordable and of good quality, so it’s bought on a regular basis. The positive reviews do overwhelm their negative counterparts, but it is important to note there have been reports on tank leakages and faulty regulators. All of which contribute to its lower rating.

| PROS

  • Slim
  • Affordable
  • Quick recovery time
  • Tank draining is assured by the ball valve drain

| CONS

  • Slow
  • Small tank
  • Reports of leaking tank and other issues

Why Do I Need An Air Compressor?

Are you fond of do-it-yourself (DIY) projects or at home workshops? Then, an air compressor is definitely something to look into. It makes work quicker and easier.

Carpentry is a nice skill to have and if you decide to teach, a nail gun is a worthy investment. Battery operated nailers are marginally more expensive than pneumatic nailers. They are also lighter and easier to maneuver.

Painting a cabinet and want a smooth professional finish? Spray painting will be easier and you can impress everyone with how you got into the little nooks and crannies of your kitchen cabinet.

It is also great for DIY auto-repairs, like removing bolts from a tire or inflating tires.

Air compression is just the cooler and more efficient way to get the job done.

Choosing an Air Compressor

There are many different kinds available on the market and various guides that say an overwhelming number of things. It is difficult to navigate in the sea of machine jargon for beginners or someone looking to buy an air compressor as a gift.

So, here are a few things to look out for in search for the perfect air compressor for you.

What to Look For

1. Cubic Feet Per Minute

CFM (cubic feet per minute) is the key factor in choosing your air compressor. It tells you how quickly a small air compressor can supply air; the rate at which air should be directly proportional to the amount supplied.

If the air compressor uses more air quicker than it can supply, stopping mid-job to wait for the compressor to catch will be inevitable.

A nice little guide to help:

Cubic Feet per Minute at 90 PSI

0.52.2 – 3.03.5 – 4.05.0 – 5.58.0 – 10.0
Inflator/Cleaner/Stapler/Pinner
Brad/Finishing Nailer
Roofing Nailer/Wrench
Drill/Spray Painter
Gun/Chisel
Grinder/Rachet
Cut-off Tool/Sander/Polisher

2. Tank Size

This does not always matter, but tank size plays a good role. Tank size determines how much air can be held at any given time.

A small tank size will not hold a lot of air. This allows air to be used up before the air decreases and the motor will start to refill the tank. So, it is a bit time consuming the smaller tanks.

Larger tanks can hold more air. This means that the air compressor can avoid pausing mid-job. A twin tank air compressor is what some people need for jobs that require a lot of air pressure.

3. Portability

While weight is a factor, it is not the only factor. A kilogram of steel may weigh equally to a kilogram of feathers, but it is less awkward to carry around the steel than the feathers.

Similarly, slimmer small air compressor units are easier to carry around than the awkward wide ones. Tank size is also something to take into account, since the tank size is also the machine size.

Handles are a big bonus, too. Sometimes these air pressure machines only have one handle, which makes carrying a bit awkward.

What Isn’t Important As You Think

1. Horse Power

Horse power is like an impressive Christmas bauble — nice to have and has importance, but it is ultimately not what makes the holiday. The amount of air power in an air compressor unit is in cubic feet per minute, not the horsepower.

2. PSI

Compressor machines provide a good amount of pressure for garage projects or other tasks, so pounds per square inch (PSI) is not really as essential to look into.

3. Oil Lubricated vs Oil Free Pumps

Majority of the recommended machines mentioned and reviewed are oil-free. This is because oil-free requires little maintenance, which is always a nice addendum to a product. However, there is a trade-off to that ease though: noise. Oil-lubricated pumps are both protective and make for a quiet air compressor.

What Makes An Air Compressor Noisy?

Generally, an air compressor will have a noise level of about 70 to 90 decibels, around the noise level of a busy restaurant and power machines or power tools, respectively.

The sound level of a normal conversation is around 60 decibels. So, when classifying any air compressor” as quiet, it is best to aim under the 70 decibel mark. Anywhere between 60 decibels to 80 decibels can be considered quiet.

1. Air

We all know that when air moves at a certain speed, it makes noise. Air intake is considerably the loudest part of air compressors. Air is absorbed through the intake just like a vacuum cleaner, which is not quiet in the slightest.

Air exhaust creates some noise, too. This is where the compressor’s byproducts are released.

2. Vibration

While vibrating in the general sense is not noisy, it can be irksome when combined with other noises.

Vibration levels depend on compressor structures as well as where the air compressor is placed. Hollow spaces encourage vibrations and make more noise.

This is why on concrete, compressors are quiet, but noise spikes when wooden house floors are involved. A way to reduce sound and vibration is isolation using rubber. It is placed at the base of the compressor to absorb noise and vibrations.

The Air Compressor For You

All air compressors are not created equal and the ideal one for you wholly depends on how it is going to be used and at what level that will be at.

Continuous Work

A smaller tank would be a problem for jobs like inflation, which requires continuous work. If this is the job you’re looking to buy a compressor for, then definitely look out for tank size.

The Campbell Hausfeld Air Compressor has a 6-gallon tank that is perfect for that. It’s also designed to conserve space and portability.

The California Air Tools 4610A Ultra Quiet Air Compressor is also a medium-sized tank size, 4.6 gallons.

The Kobalt Quiet Tech Electric Twin Stack Air Compressor’s tank size is 4.30, so a little smaller than the California Tech one.

Again, reiterating larger tanks mean more stored pressurized air. This means it will not need to refill on energy as often.

Lightweight

The second lightest air compressor is the California Air Tools 1P1060S Air Compressor. It is less than 30lbs, which makes it easy to bring around. Its tank is only one gallon, but refills in one minute. You don’t have to wait too long to use the machine to start working again.

The lightest would be Dewalt D55140 1-Gallon Air Compressor, at 24 lbs. It is more portable, but does not have the best specs.

Of the two, I would recommend the former over the latter.

Low Maintenance

Reiterating that oil free requires less maintenance, any machine mentioned in this review or any review indicates oil free is ideal for those not too keen to check on maintenance.

The Briggs & Stratton Quiet Tech Air Compressor would be the machine I would recommend, since it has a decent CFM and has two air pumps for continuous flow.

Quietest

There are two air compressors that are so quiet it could almost be appropriate to call them silent compressors.

Briggs & Stratton Quiet Tech Air Compressor is very much below the normal conversational noise. It’s so quiet it’s appropriate to call it a silent air compressor.

The second silent air compressor is the California Air Tools 1P1060 whose sound registers at only 56 decibels. This almost silent compressor registers at only 59 decibels. It will be suitable for inflating and cleaning out air staplers and pinners.

Nailers

A great use for a pneumatic machine is nail guns or nailers, so if this is the particular thing you are looking for, then it is best to check if the air machine has enough power for it. Pressure and volume are important.

The Makita MAC2400 Air Compressor has good horsepower and the most cubic feet per minute at a pressure of 90 PSI to be appropriate for nailers. However, any air compressor with an airpower between 2.2 to 4.0 at a pressure of 90 PSI will do,

For budget friendlier options, any of the California Air Tools would be appropriate or the Rolair JC.

Our Top Picks

All these air compressors have their place, use, and are all pretty great. However, there are two that stand out.

Campbell Hausfeld Air Compressor takes second place due to its moderate air power, which allows it to be used for inflating, cleaning, finishing, and even nailing on the roof. It’s price is highly budget-friendly, which proves you do not need to always sacrifice quality for affordability.

The overall best air compressor is the Makita MAC2400 Air Compressor. It’s the most expensive on the list, but it is hard to ignore the impressive CFM. It may not be the lightest or the quietest, but it is overall the best out there.