Best Silent air compressor – Myth or Legend

How to find the best silent air compressor?

best silent air compressor

There is no such thing as a silent air compressor – or is there?  If you really need to run a silent air compressor, then we just might have the answer!

The search for a silent air compressor has raised a bit of a conundrum for us here at, so let us give you an update on what we found.  Ever since we decided to research an article on the best quiet air compressor  there has been the suggestion that there is something out there even better than an ultra quiet air compressor!

And we were very impressed at just how quiet the best air compressor can be.  But is there a completely silent air compressor on the market?  More like an ultra quiet air compressor rather than a totally silent air compressor.  Certainly that is good news for anyone who needs to operate an ultra quiet air compressor on a shared work site or next to neighbors and residential areas.  The problem is that some air compressors are very noisy, and this means that you simply cannot use them around other people who need some peace and quiet.

Max PressureFlowRateTank SizeWeightNoise Level

135 psi Max0.75 CFM
@ 90 psi
1 gal34 lbs71 dB

135 psi Max0.7 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
1 gal21 lbs68 dB

Air Tools
100 psi Max2.0 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
1.6 gal35 lbs60 dB

200 psi Max3.0 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
2.5 gal36 lbs72 dB

Air Tools
120 psi Max2.2 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
2.0 gal35 lbs60 dB

Air Tools
120 psi Max2.2 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
5.5 gal35 lbs60 dB

Air Tools
120 psi Max2.2 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
8.0 gal54 lbs60 dB

Super Silent
114 psi Max2.1 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
0.9 gal49 lbs40 dB

114 psi Max2.5 SCFM
@ 90 PSI
6 gal69 lbs40 dB

How quiet is a quiet air compressor?

To judge how much noise an air compressor puts out, we need to look at the decibels, measured in dB.   The best quiet air compressor should be around the 70 dB range or lower.  Just for reference, a normal conversation is around 60 – 70 dB, so even a quiet air compressor is going to cause you to raise your voice to talk above the air compressor noise.

Many air compressors run at 80 dB and above which can be very uncomfortable in a closed space, or a busy work site.   In fact if you have an air compressor that runs at 80 dB or above, you need to consider wearing hearing protection if you are exposed to levels above 80 dB or more for long periods of time.

What defines an ultra quiet air compressor?

An air compressor could be considered as ultra quiet when its noise output is less than 60 dB.  This means that you can comfortably work with an ultra quiet air compressor in close proximity to other people without disturbing their normal routine.  An ultra quiet air compressor is excellent for using on busy work sites, where the low noise level does not add to the general background noise.  Better still, you can use an ultra quiet air compressor right next to your neighbors, without them even knowing that you are using an air compressor at all.

Which types of air compressors are the quietest?

As a general rule, the centrifugal pump air compressors and the rotary screw air compressors are the way to go for a quiet air compressor.  These quiet air compressors make much less noise than the traditional reciprocating piston pump air compressor.  However, the rotary screw and centrifugal air compressors are more expensive, and tend to be larger in size.  So there is a problem trading off noise for portability and cost.

What is the best ultra quiet air compressor for home use?

If you are looking for the best ultra quiet air compressor to use at home or in the garage, then there is a narrow list of contenders suitable for the job.  If you want a silent air compressor, then there are still a select few models to choose from.  Here is a list of the best silent air compressor that we recommend for home use, in the garage or even for small contracting tasks.


Best Silent Air Compressor Reviews:


1. DEWALT D55140 1-Gallon 135 PSI Max Trim Compressor

Let’s start off with some of the small DeWalt trim compressor, which is a very quiet air compressor.  The DeWalt D55140 trim compressor runs at around 69 decibels.  This is not quite the whisper quiet air compressor we are looking for.  But the DeWalt D55140 trim compressor is certainly an ultra quiet air compressor.  The DeWalt air compressor would be perfect for working indoors, or in a crowded workspace, without deafening anyone.

The DeWalt D55140 trim compressor is quiet and very small, but it is not a toy!  This little ultra quiet air compressor operates up to a stunning 135 psi.  With a 1 gallon air tank, the DeWalt air compressor may need to pause for refill, but it is so quiet and so fast, you don’t really notice it.

DeWalt make the best air compressor!

When you see how small and compact this trim compressor is, you will wonder how DeWalt packed in so many excellent features.  The DeWalt air compressor comes with a easy to use, high flow regulator, a heavy duty cage design, and cast iron air tank. The professional touch comes from the integrated control panel.  The integrated control panel includes pressure gauges and control switches all easy to read and easy to access.

Ultra quiet air compressor, and ultra-portable also!

Weighing in at just 24 pounds, DeWalt have managed to contain all of this wonderful technology into a very neat package.  The casing on this trim compressor not only protects the equipment, but includes a handle for easy portability.  This DeWalt air compressor is lightweight, easy to carry, and great to transport from one work site to another whenever you like.

What we like about it:  Ultra Quiet air compressor – very small and portable – high operating pressure – 135 psi

The DeWalt ultra quiet air compressor is suitable for single user type applications for the home or garage.  Ideal for a home handyman who needs a steady reliable supply of compressed air.  The DeWalt D55140 trim compressor is probably not suitable for running more than one power tool at a time, because of the small air storage tank.

Click here to see where to buy the DeWalt D55140 trim compressor.


2. Senco PC1010 1 HP 1 Gallon Compressor

The Senco PC1010 is another air compressor from our recommended quiet air compressor list.   But no matter how hard we try, it is difficult to find an ultra quiet air compressor that come in under the 70 dB mark.  The Senco PC1010 is close, but at around 73 dB, it is not going to fool anybody.  However, in comparison with other Pancake air compressors on the market, the Senco PC1010 air compressor is much quieter. This makes the Senco PC1010 a better choice of air compressor to use indoors or in the garage.

Nice Quiet air compressor

Weighing in at 20 pounds, the Senco PC1010 is very portable and great for moving around the worksite.  It comes with a 1 gallon storage tank, which keeps the size and weight to a minimum.  However, the small air tank does require a lot of refilling if you need to work fast.  Be prepared for a pause to refill the tank every now and again, but it only takes 30 seconds to recover, and you can carry on working.

The PC1010 from Senco is another portable air compressor built for indoor use and with customer’s ears in mind. The Senco PC1010 operates with around 73-75 decibels, which is much quieter than traditional pancake compressors.

It is powered by a 1HP 4-amp motor, an oil-free no-mess pump system, and 1-gallon tank, which has individual gauges for regulated output pressure. It takes 128 seconds to fill and 35 seconds to recover, giving users more time in completing tasks.

This unit performs well in installing floor molding, trimming and finishing work, inflating various tires, and performing other tasks that use pneumatic tools. Ideal for do-it-yourself home makeover projects, the Senco PC1010 can deliver 20 to 44 drives per minute, depending on the type of tool used.

What we like about it:

We like the Senco air compressor because it is one of the quietest compressors on the market.  The Senco PC1010 is not capable of high flowrate tasks and high capacity power tools. But we do recommend the Senco air compressor for all sorts of light tasks such as brad nailing, trimming and finish nailing.

Click here for a detailed review of the Senco PC1010 air compressor at Amazon.

3.      California Air Tools CAT-1610A

There is no way we could go any further on our quest for the best silent air compressor without a look at California Air tools.  Without a doubt, the California Air Tools air compressors are the nearest thing to a silent air compressor.

So here is the good news!  The California Air Tools CAT-1610A is an almost silent air compressor that outputs a whisper quiet 60 dB.  This is a stunning result for a very capable and powerful air compressor.  The best thing is that the CAT air compressor looks like any other machine, but you can barely notice when it is running.  About all that people notice is a gentle humming in the background, and most people are very surprised when they find out it is a silent air compressor!

Always choose a CAT ultra quiet air compressor

The reason CAT achieves the silent air compressor operation of their products is the way they engineer their systems.  California Air Tools design all of their compressor motors to run at a speed of 1680 rpm.  This is much slower and quieter than other air compressors.  The innovative air pump also uses a double reciprocating action, which makes up for the lower speed.

What we like about it:

We like the California Air Tools CAT-1610A air compressor because it is an almost silent air compressor.  For when you need to work indoors, or next to your neighbors house, the CAT 1610 is the way to go.  When you need to work late at night, or at a quiet worksite, the CAT-1610A is a great option.

Check out the best ultra quiet air compressor – the California Air Tools CAT-1610A.


4. DEWALT DWFP55130 Quiet Air Compressor

Another superb DeWalt air compressor, the DWFP55130 is a heavy duty model, but still very quiet to operate.  Is it a silent air compressor?  Well no, because it is rated at between 71 dB and 72 dB noise level.  It is an excellent choice for quiet air compressor, because it is definitely a lot better than most air compressors.  The way that DeWalt can achieve such quiet performance is down to their specialist technology.  According to the manufacturer they have incorporated seven different sound reduction methods in this model.  We don’t necessarily know what these technologies are exactly, but the proof is in the product – it is quiet!

Another great feature of the DeWalt DWFP55130 is the incredible operating air pressure of 150 psi.  For short term applications, the DeWalt air compressor can handle up to 200 psi.  This means you can have more than enough air pressure for the most high performance tools and applications.  This is just such a great all round air compressor.

DeWalt DWFP55130 quiet air compressor

The DeWalt DWFP55130 air compressor is an extremely powerful contender.  It sports a 12 amp electric motor, which fills a 2.5 gallon air tank.  It can recover the tank pressure faster than many other smaller air compressor units.  Weighing in at 36 pounds, this DeWalt air compressor is light enough to transport around, and you can store it with a minimum of fuss.

What we like about it:

You just know that when you buy a DeWalt air compressor that you get a top quality product.  The best thing about the DeWalt DWFP55130 is the nice and quiet operation, and the high pressure supply of compressed air to drive as many air tools as you need.  You get the benefit of the latest DeWalt quiet air compressor technology, which is a pleasure to own and operate.

Read the detailed information of the DeWalt DWFP55130 at Amazon.


5. California Air Tools 2010A Ultra Quiet Air Compressor

But let’s get back to the search for the best silent air compressor, because I think we have it.

The California Air Tools 2010A or CAT 2010A operates at just 60 decibels.  This makes it one of the best ultra quiet air compressors that we have seen on the market.  At such a low noise level, the CAT 2010A is virtually a silent air compressor, that will not cause any problem when running quietly in the background.  Perfect for quiet work sites, or for working indoors, the CAT 2010A is a pleasure to work with.

Features of the CAT 2010A

The California Air Tools 2010A comes with a 2 gallon air tank, which is constructed from Aluminium.  This means the overall weight is reduced, and the unit is easier to handle and transport.  Overall, the unit weighs in at 35 pounds, and comes with big wheels, so it is very versatile.

The California Air Tools 2010A is powered by a 1 horsepower motor.  The motor drives a double reciprocating air pump, so it can refill the tank very quickly.  The design of the unit is sturdy and durable, so this air compressor is built to last.

What we like about it:

We like the California Air Tools CAT-2010A air compressor because it is an ultra quiet air compressor.  For working in quiet locations, or anywhere indoors or in the garage, the CAT 2010 is a great choice.

Check out the best ultra quiet air compressor – the California Air Tools CAT-2010A.


But wait – there’s more!  California Air Tools continue to be the manufacturer of choice when it comes to the best silent air compressor.  And we have two bonus models for your consideration.

6. California Air Tools CAT-5510SE silent air compressor

7. California Air Tools CAT-8010 Steel tank Air Compressor

Either of these California Air Tools compressors are the way to go if you want a silent air compressor.  The CAT-5510SE has a 5.5 gallon storage tank, and the CAT-8010 contains 8 gallons.

California Air Tools for ultra quiet operation

These high quality air compressors store compressed air up to 120 psi, and recover in as little as 30 or 40 seconds.  The powerful motor runs at a very steady 1680 rpm which is nice and quiet. Because the California Air Tools pump is a dual reciprocating air pump, it can still perform adequately and silently.

California Air Tools – built to last

The stainless steel storage tanks on the CAT ultra quiet air compressor are free from corrosion, and built to last.  These models are built with a sturdy frame and wheels to enable ease of transport.  California Air Tools is built to handle a bit of rough and tough treatment, so they are perfect on a building site, or on the back of a truck.


So you still want the best silent air compressor?

Some people say, you can’t find a perfectly silent air compressor!  Sure we have found the best ultra quiet air compressor for your consideration.  But not totally silent.  But hold on, there is another brand that claims to make the best silent air compressor.

8. Silentaire Super Silent Airbrush Compressor

The incredibly quiet range of silent air compressors by Silentaire live up to their reputation.  These silent air compressors are sure to impress everyone who prefers or  needs to work in a quiet work space.  They cost a little more than other models.

Operating at an incredibly low noise level of just 30 dB, the Super Silent DR-150 Airbrush Compressor is truly a silent air compressor.

Despite the fact that it is an almost totally silent air compressor, it still manages to generate a very handy operating pressure up to 84 – 114 psi.  The only limiting factor with this silent air compressor is the flowrate, which is limited to just 0.7 cfm, and the air storage tank which only has a capacity of 1 gallon.

Check out the Silentaire Super Silent DR-150 Airbrush Compressor at amazon.


9. Silentaire Super Silent 50-TC Silent Air Compressor

The Silentaire line of air compressors are almost totally silent.  The super Silent 50-TC is a silent air compressor with a little extra performance, providing up to 114 psi operating pressure and a healthy 2.1 cfm.  The outstanding information is that even with an operating air pressure greater than 100 psi, the noise level of this silent air compressor is a very quiet 40 dB.

This unit comes equipped with an air storage tank of just under 1 gallon, a line pressure gauge, a pressure regulator with moisture trap.  The Super silent 50-TC is capable of running in automatic mode with,  a built in safety valve, air intake filter and a carrying handle.

If you need to operate super quiet machinery, there is a Super Silent air compressor that is right for you.  Check out the Silentaire Super silent 50-TC Air Compressor at Amazon.


10. Silentaire Sil-Air 50-24 Silent Air Compressor

Now we come to the best silent air compressor on the market – the Silentaire Sil-Air 50-24.  This silent air compressor costs a little more than the average air compressor, and it will set you back more than $1100.  But in the interests of reviewing the best silent air compressor, we think you will agree that the performance is outstanding.

The Sil Air 50-24 comes with a heavy duty 1/2 horsepower air pump for increased power and versatility.  It is still rated at a mere 40 db maximum operating noise which is simply outstanding for an air compressor of any size.

But the Silentaire 50-24 is a high performance air compressor with an impressive 114 psi operating pressure, and a delivery flowrate greater than 2 cfm.  The storage tank on this unit is a very useful 6 gallon, which is more than enough to compete with some of the industrial units on the market, but without the noise1

Have a closer look at the best silent air compressor – the Silentaire Sil-Air 50-24.

Of course if you want to run in complete silence, there is a better way!  Here’s the trick to the best silent air compressor – leave the motor off and just run air form the storage tank.  Now that is how to use the best silent air compressor!

Click here to see our range of quiet portable air compressors. Protection Status



Leave a Reply

Solve : *
13 + 17 =