Whether you’re a professional or a home enthusiast, owning an air compressor can give you the option to use a range of pneumatic tools, from drills and impact wrenches, to specialized air cleaners and even airbrushes.
Unfortunately, many are turned off of pneumatic tools because of the noise that they can produce.
Although a noiseless air compressor will never be a possibility with portable units, that doesn’t mean that you can’t purchase a relatively quiet air compressor that will be suitable for work around your home or garage, or even on a worksite.
Let’s take a look at just how quiet an air compressor can get, along with ten of the best low noise air compressors on the market.
Why An Ultra Quiet Air Compressor Is Important for Your Health
Having an air compressor that produces a low amount of noise is about more than just convenience.
With loud power tools, hearing fatigue can become a reality, leading to headaches or temporary ringing in the ears. With prolonged exposure, particularly over longer working days, permanent hearing damage can occur.
For a device to be considered as a quiet air compressor, it would need to have an operating decibel (dB) rating of less than 85 dB.
This figure is comparable to the noise that you would be exposed to on a busy city street, and is around ten decibels lower than the average lawnmower.
Even so, it is not recommended that you are exposed to sound levels of 85 dB for more than 8 hours at a time, so the quieter things get, the better an air compressor will be for your hearing.
It might surprise you to learn that there are some very capable quiet air compressors available, with operating noise level ratings that are as low as 60dB.
As a service to our loyal fans, we went ahead and made a research online to come up with a list of the ten quietest air compressors that are available on the market.
To see our results, have a look at the summary table right below.To see the current price on Amazon, just hover your mouse over the model name.
All ten of the compressors that we look at here will achieve ratings less than 85 dB, each one representing a solid choice if you’re looking for the next best thing to a silent air compressor.
Beneath the table you will find a brief description of each one, with links where available to our full review within our site.
|Model||Noise Level (dB rating)|
|California Air Tools 5510SE||60|
|Campbell Hausfeld DC060500||68|
|California Air Tools CAT-4610A||60|
|Campbell Hausfeld DC080500||68|
|California Air Tools 15020C||70|
California Air Tools CAT 5510SE Quiet Air Compressor
With a competitive price and strong performance, the CAT 6310 is a strong contender for one of the best quiet air compressors on the market.
This particular company has performed a good job of producing a number of quiet air compressors, which is reflected in good customer feedback and strong professional reviews.
The electric motor produces only 60dB of noise, which is around the same as what you would experience in everyday conversation. This means that you could use the unit on a jobsite without needing hearing protection, or you could even use it at home without disturbing your family, even at night!
Max pressure from this unit is 120 PSI, and it has a highly respectable 3.1 CFM output @ 40PSI, making it possible to use airbrush tools, pneumatic wrenches, and a range of staplers and nail guns.
This excellent 1 horsepower unit is low maintenance and provides respectable performance.
It is also easily portable at less than 40 lb., and comes in a striking green finish with an excellent steel frame roll cage to protect the tank and the motor.
One of the best things about this quiet air compressor is that the recovery time is only 11 seconds. This means that the limitations of the small tank can be overcome to run inflation devices, staplers, various nail guns, a cleaning air gun, and a range of other accessories.
With the noise produced being as low 60dB, it’s as comfortable to use as the previously mentioned CAT 6310, and would be a great addition for light pneumatic tools on a jobsite or in a home workshop.
Check out our full review here.
DEWALT DWFP55130 Heavy Duty 200 PSI Quiet Trim Compressor
DeWALT is one of the most trusted names in power tools and accessories, and this heavy duty trim compressor continues their tradition of quality, reasonable prices, and good performance.
With a 2.5-gallon tank, 3.0 CFM output @ 90 PSI, and low maintenance design, this is a great tool for anyone working with pneumatic tools for trim work, light carpentry, flooring, or other jobsite or home DIY jobs.
At just 36 lb. it is easy to carry around, and it features a well-balanced design with an integrated handle.
It also performs well in the noise department, producing just 71.5 dB of noise, putting it slightly above your average conversation, but well below the noise level of a domestic washing machine.
DEWALT D55140 1-Gallon 135 PSI Max Trim Compressor
This is one of the smallest and lightest of all professional grade quiet air compressors, weighing just 24 lb. and producing 71dB of noise.
Although it’s not the most powerful air compressor on the market, it does fit a special market niche and comes with a highly competitive price that sits well under the $150 mark.
This unit has been designed for professionals and home users who need to use light tools with a no-nonsense compressor that doesn’t require extensive maintenance, and that will keep performing for years to come.
Great for window installers, trim finishers, flooring installers, and home enthusiasts, this is a great little compressor that carries a strong brand name, a full one-year warranty, and great construction features that you would expect from DeWALT.
Campbell Hausfeld DC060500 Quiet Air Compressor
Some of the quietest air compressors are also the smallest, which can limit your options when it comes to the tools that you can use with a particular unit.
If you’re performing intermittent work, such as nailing or stapling, then a smaller air tank won’t be a problem for you. However, if you run continuous flow tools, such as inflators or an airbrush, then you’re going to need a bigger tank.
That’s where this Campbell Hausfeld fits in nicely, with a six-gallon tank it will be suitable for tools that are used for longer periods of time.
It produces a respectable 2.4 CFM @ 90 PSI, and produces just 68 dB of noise while the motor is running.
It fits comfortably into the low decibel air compressor market, and is competitively priced with comparable units.
DEWALT DWFP55126 6-Gallon 165 PSI Pancake Compressor
This DeWALT unit has a familiar pancake air compressor design, with a large 6-gallon tank that will allow for continuous flow tools to be used comfortably.
Great for artists and anyone performing hobby painting, automotive work, or other paint work, as well as construction professionals who need a decent amount of air storage for pneumatic tools.
This compressor sits right on the limit of the ultra-quiet air compressor category, producing 75.5 dB of sound while the motor is in operation.
Even so, the noise level will be acceptable to most operators, and is worth the compromise, considering the decent amount of air storage that this unit provides.
This unit has been well received by both consumers and professionals, boasting a 4.6/5 average review score on the largest ecommerce site.
The fact that it produces 2.6 CFM @ 90 PSI means that it can outperform a number of other air compressors in its category.
Senco PC1010 1 Gallon Compressor
Small, well built, portable, and quiet – these are just some of the reasons that the Senco 1010 quiet air compressor is one of the most popular portable compressors on the market.
Despite a low .5hp electric motor and a 1-gallon tank, a number of users have found that the Senco is the perfect tool for light work in hobby scenarios and for performing DIY around the home.
While it’s not going to be the rugged workhorse that some larger compressors are, the fact that it is so lightweight and affordable have made it one of the highest rated small compressors on the world’s most important ecommerce site.
Consumers rank it a 4.4/5, and that comes from over 500 reviews. It can reach noise levels of up to 75 dB (at peak operation), but considering its low price point and extreme portability, there’s no question that this deserves its place amongst the best quiet air compressors.
California Air Tools CAT-4610A Ultra Quiet Air Compressor
Lightweight at just 46 lb., two tanks to allow up to 4.6 gallons of storage, and an operating volume of 4.6 decibels, all make this California Air Tools compressor a favorite of many home and professional users.
It features a 1 horsepower motor that can peak at 2 horsepower, and it can provide a commendable 3.8 CFM @ 40 PSI.
While this would be ideal for trim work, flooring, nailing, and general tool use, it has also been used in healthcare applications.
Some users have found success with this as a dental tool compressor, which reinforces the fact that this is a quiet (60 dB) and reliable unit.
California Air Tools 15020C Quiet Electric Air Compressor
Going quiet doesn’t have to mean compromising on heavy duty performance.
This compressor proves that fact.
It has a massive 15-gallon tank, a 2 horsepower motor, and can provide up to 6.4 CFM @ 40 PSI.
It’s low maintenance with an oil free pump, and best of all, it produces only 70 decibels when running. Although not as portable as the other units listed here, it does have a pull handle and integrated wheels, and balances power output and size without being impractical.
Campbell Hausfelt Quiet Air Compressor DC080500
Similar in design to the CAT 15020C, this compressor features a large tank with an electric motor that won’t create too much noise.
At just 68 dB when operating, it provides an 8-gallon storage tank that will make it ideal for continuous flow work, or for tools that need a significant amount of compressed air per operation.
Painting, inflating, stapling, and nailing are just some of the ideal uses of this compressor. It has respectable consumer feedback with an average 3.8/5 rating, and it is priced right for its capabilities.
Choosing a Quiet Air Compressor Doesn’t Mean You Have to Compromise
Now that you’re familiar with a few of the best low decibel air compressors on the market, you will be able to make an informed decision on your next purchase.
Remember that air compressor decibel ratings won’t be your only deciding factor when it comes to finding your next compressor.
You should also take a look at our comprehensive buying guides (such as the complete portable air compressor guide which includes our top recommendations for 12V portable air compressors and tire inflators) our summary tables and full reviews to learn how to determine your needs based on the tools you use, the power that you need, and the budget that you have available to spend on a compressor.