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It might not be the most glamorous appliance in your workshop but it’s one of the most important. You need it to keep your tools running, your car tires pumped up and for more than a dozen other uses every single day. That’s why you should check out our review of some quiet air compressor machines on the market today.

Any type of metalwork, furniture making, or even auto repairs that require the use of tools will at some point require an air compressor to run that tool. You can’t really get by without one these days. The uses for them are so widespread and you need it so often it might be best to think about investing in a good quiet oil-free model with a powerful motor to meet all your needs. You want one that is portable too since you’ll be moving it around depending on where you need to use it.

It’s not just noise levels but also the frequency, vibration level, and feel of the unit running and supplying compressed air. It has to do more than just be quiet though it must also maintain a constant and steady noise level so you can hear your tools running at all times without interruptions too. In other words, units that keep a low decibel rating as well as provide smooth power output levels are preferable for those who need a lot of quiet work done.

Whether you’re looking for something to use in your garage or workshop or even with your cars, there’s a wide variety of models made today that fit many needs. Make sure you compare different makes and models before making a purchase since they can range greatly in price tag depending on what their main uses will be. Some will be designed for heavy-duty usage in a shop or garage, while others might be a little lighter weight and more appropriate for at-home shops.

Best 5 Quiet Air Compressors Reviewed

California Air Tools CAT-1P1060S

California Air Tools CAT-1P1060S

The California Air Tools Light & Quiet 1P1060S Portable Air Compressor is designed to be one of the quietest air compressors in the industry. The .6 HP motor operates at only 1680 RPM, with a single-piston pump that will have a life cycle before wear of 300. Its durable body and lightweight tank make it perfect for your next job site or just around the house changes you might need to do in a hurry.

The Single Piston Pump makes this compressor both durable and efficient.  It has a noise level of 56 decibels, which is less than most other brands on the market today. Most importantly it’s oil-free, making our design also environmentally conscious.

Key Features
  • Noise Level –  56 decibels
  • Oil-Free Pump – Cleaner air for better tool operation
  • Generator Running Watts Min – 2000
  • Weight – 29 pounds
DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor

DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor

Do you need a reliable and compact air compression system to run your tools? If so, the DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor can be an excellent option for you. The heavy-duty 165 max PSI provides enough firepower to manage even tough tasks like framing, demolition, or lugging long pipes such as water or gas lines. And with a generous 6-gallon tank (enough for nearly 3 car tires), Dewalt’s compressor will carry through those hard-to-reach jobs that require portable equipment.

With 36 dBA noise levels and 90 PSCM*, the DEWALT Pancake Air Compressor is designed to keep workers comfortable and help create a more productive work environment. It also includes convenient features like a high flow regulator & a couple for fast tire inflation and a deflation valve to let the air out of tires quickly.

Key Features
  • Noise Level –  75.5 decibels
  • 165 max PSI 6.0-gallon tank (22.7 L) and 2.6 SCFM* delivered @ 90 PSI pump, enable long tool run time with quick recovery
  • High-flow regulator
  • Weight – 30 pounds
California Air Tools 8010SPC

California Air Tools 8010SPC

The CALIFORNIA AIR TOOLS 8010SPC Ultra Quiet & Oil-Free Air Compressor is designed to be one of the quietest 1.0 horsepower air compressors in the industry.” The powerful 1.0 HP motor operates at only 1400 RPM creating less noise, vibration and creating less wear”. The Oil-Free Dual Piston Pump System is engineered for longevity, high performance, and durability. “The CAT-MP100LF Motor/Pump is tested for a minimum pump life of 4000 hours before service – 30% more life before repair”. The large 8.0-gallon steel air tank is internally coated with epoxy to minimize rusting over time, enabling it to take what you throw at it year after year without worry. “The 8.0-gallon steel air tank provides 40% more air storage than 6-gallon tanks”.

Key Features
  • Noise Level –  40 decibels
  • Oil-Free Pump
  • Thermal Overload Protector
  • Weight – 125 pounds
Hitachi EC28M

Hitachi EC28M

Hitachi EC28M Compressors are great for jobs that require precision like woodworking, framing boards, or fabricating. Quiet operation makes compressors ideal for residential construction projects too. Thanks to its oil-free pump system, the Hitachi EC28M can operate continuously without any need for maintenance over time because it never gets dirty. Perfectly balanced this machine is easy to use with power and performance worthy of your toughest jobs. These professional-grade tools offer advanced features like an industrial quick coupler factory mounted on the frame so you have faster hose attachment every time plus a stainless steel braided discharge hose that resists corrosion and remains flexible even at cold temperatures plus a centralized control panel protected by breakaway plastic lens cover which reduces the chance of water seepage and damage.

Key Features
  • Noise Level –  59 decibels
  • Oil-Free Pump
  • Capacity – 1 Gallon
  • Weight – 25.2 pounds


Built with a durable two-stage cast iron pump, extended service life, and thoughtfully designed to save space, you’ll find the perfect match among low RPM motors. The EMAX E10V080V1 is built for professional mechanics who need to be able to rely on their tools for years at a time. With an embedded cool-tek air stream technology that helps lower operating temperatures for improved performance, this tool promises you peace of mind as your workday grinds on. This compact tank design can fit just about anywhere without being intrusive in your garage or shop – what are you waiting for? Hardware recommended but not included.

Key Features
  • Noise Level –  76 decibels
  • Running Horsepower – 10
  • Tank Capacity – 80 Gallon
  • Weight – 715 pounds

How To Choose The Best Quiet Air Compressor: A Buyer’s Guide

What makes a quiet air compressor? Independent tests have revealed that the top-rated quiet air compressors have low sound ratings and also low vibration levels. The best compressors will have smooth airflow as well as steady or fluctuating decibel levels so they don’t vary too much when running loud tools.

Here are some things to consider when buying a quiet air compressor:

Your Needs

The first step is to consider what you will be using your compressor for. Will it be used in a professional woodworking shop? Is it going to sit at home in the garage or will it go with you when you travel? If it’s heavier, then that might impact getting something that is more portable since bigger models tend to weigh more.


Consider how much room you have available in the car, truck, workshop, or home where you plan to put your air compressor machine. The air compressors come in all shapes and sizes so there should be enough variety out there to fit any size requirement. You want something small enough to carry around when needed but powerful enough (usually determined by the horsepower) when doing larger jobs like running a framing nailer or drill press.


This is necessary to determine how much air output you’re going to get with your compressor machine. The higher the horsepower, the quicker it can fill up its tank and then move that air out through your tools or car tires. You want one that will be able to handle any air tool you might use often like a framing nailer or impact wrench without losing power due to low pump capacity (PSI). If you’ll be using it mostly for painting or at-home projects where you won’t need heavy-duty power, then this really isn’t as important since most compressors made today are pretty powerful no matter what their sizes are.

Noise Levels

This is important for all air compressor owners who need to work in quiet conditions. The best compressors will keep noise levels below 85 decibels (dB) while standard models fall in at about 90 dB or higher. Be sure you get something that has the lowest noise rating available since even 5 dB makes a big difference in your ability to hear tools running when there’s background noise like music playing or other people working too.

Vibration Level

When looking for the best quiet air compressor, then low vibration levels are essential for comfort and safety reasons. You don’t want your unit shaking so much that it provides a lot of motion during use or makes your car shake when transporting it there. Look for one with rubberized feet so it remains steady on the ground during use.


There are many different types of air compressors made today, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. Here are some quick looks at the most common types:

  • Piston Compressors – These units consist of pistons moving up and down inside cylinders to create compression in the tank, which is filled with an oil lubricant so it can maintain a consistent flow rate when running tools or filling tires. These are usually mounted horizontally but there are also small compact ones that mount vertically so they take up less floor space in your garage or shop. They come in single-cylinder designs or two-cylinder models for more power. The best quiet air compressor will have large enough cylinders for good airflow while running smoothly to reduce noise levels.
  • Rotary Screw Air Compressors – These are designed for heavy-duty applications since they have the most power of any type of compressor available today. They consist of two intermeshing gears that remain stationary while rotating in opposite directions. The air intake is at one end and exhaust is ejected from the other but there are also small compressed air storage tanks built into these larger models so you can store compressed air rather than always needing it right away. The best quiet air compressor will use helical gears instead of spur gears since this reduces noise during operation along with lower vibrations due to smooth gear movement.
  • Centrifugal Air Compressors – Designed for lighter duty jobs, this type of unit has a rotating impeller carrying the air into the tank. The impeller is connected to a crankshaft so it spins around inside similar to the way an engine works. It’s best for running brad and pin nailers along with other tools that use smaller amounts of compressed air. These are usually mounted vertically but there are also models designed to be mounted horizontally so they’ll fit better in compact spaces like interior cabinets or under workbenches where you don’t want them taking up too much room.
Tank Capacity

You’ll want to select a compressor with a tank large enough to keep it running constantly without constantly having to refill the tank. The best quiet air compressor will have at least a 4-gallon capacity but larger ones provide more power and let you work longer between refills.

Weight & Portability

The best way to determine how portable an air compressor is will be to actually move it from place to place. Some air compressors come with wheels and handle so they’re very easy to push around while others may be a bit heavier due to the size of their tanks or other components. You’ll need an air compressor that can easily fit through normal doorways without any trouble.

Oil-Free or Oil Lubricated?

Oil-free air compressors are the newest type on the market so they tend to have a higher cost. They’re more expensive to produce, which drives up costs for customers. They require less maintenance and come with warranties of around 2 years compared to just 1 year for oil-lubricated units. Oil-free models also weigh about 40% less than oil-lubricated designs so it’s easier to move them from job site to job site if you don’t want it taking up shop space all the time. These last two benefits make them popular with construction crews working in multiple job sites every day rather than staying at one location for several weeks or months.

Understanding Air Compressor PSI & CFM

When it comes to air compressors, you’ll often see two different measurements associated with them. These are PSI and CFM.

PSI is the amount of pressure that’s built up inside your tank. Lower numbers, like 60 or 80 PSI, are commonly used for household or light-duty work. You can find 4-gallon tanks at this psi rating since it’s enough for running nail guns along with other low-demand tools. Higher pressure ratings allow for more power so you can run larger brad nailers, staplers, grinders, etc…

CFM stands for Cubic Feet per Minute which indicates how many cubic feet of air are moved every minute. The higher the CFM value, the more tools you can run at the same time without having to wait too long in between each use. The compressor’s capacity will determine just how many tools it can run at one given time. For example, if you have a 4-gallon tank that has an 80 psi rating then this would allow for different combinations of nailers and grinders running simultaneously with no more than 5 minutes in between each job.


Which types of air compressors are the quietest?

You’ll find oil-free air compressors are the quietest since they have a higher quality design that requires less maintenance. They also require far less air pressure to operate so you can use lower volume pumps which reduces noise. Oil-lubricated designs aren’t quite as quiet but there are some brands that offer very low decibel ratings so it won’t be too distracting when working in your home or garage area.

How to Reduce Air Compressor Noise?

There are several methods of quieting down your air compressor. First off, you want to make sure the valves and fittings are all in good working order to prevent leaks or other problems that can cause it to get louder than normal. The location of your unit is important too. If it’s located right beside your workspace then this will be more distracting than if it’s in a corner or hallway of your garage. It can also help to put it on some type of rubber mat to reduce the vibrations and cause less noise overall.

Why is my compressor so loud?

It’s possible the air compressor you bought is simply too loud for where it’s located. If you’re using it in your garage, then it may be disrupting your family as they go about their daily routines. The next thing to check is that all of the valves and fittings are working as they should so there aren’t any leaks or other problems. You also want to make sure it’s a good idea to put your compressor in the corner of a room or on a rubber mat to reduce vibrations and noise overall.

What is a Quiet Vertical Air Compressor?

A quiet vertical air compressor is one that doesn’t produce a lot of noise. There are several methods of reducing the overall sound level such as using oil-free pumps and putting them in a corner or on a rubber mat to dampen vibrations. Where you put the unit is also important since running it beside your workspace can be distracting and interfere with your concentration.


All of the above air compressors offer low noise levels and some great additional features that will improve your experience. If you want a quieter design then it’s smart to go with oil-free models so there’s less maintenance. It’s also helpful to put the unit in the corner of your garage or on a rubber mat so it can reduce vibrations and noise overall. This way, you’ll be able to enjoy using your new compressor without running into any problems.