How to Quiet An Air Compressor

How to Quiet an Air Compressor

Noise pollution from mechanical equipment is common in factories and production plants. Industrial air compressors are some of these causes of pollution. However, manufacturers are using technology to dampen sound. Apart from rubber grommets, this guide shows how to quiet an air compressor with other sound-dampening techniques.


The Ideal Noise Level For Quiet Air Compressors

Modern compression systems like the Campbell Hausfeld 8HP air compressor runs with low noise. Any factory operator that’s knows how air compressors work will be happy to run this machine. With a decibel rating of below 60dB, the air compressor has efficient noise-reduction systems.

When shopping for portable air compressors, products with low-noise ratings are ideal for both commercial and domestic use. The range is between 40 and 90 dB, and noise levels increase with higher ratings.

During faults or maintenance issues, air compressors’ noise levels rise to 95 dB. Usually, air compressors noise levels below 70 dB are in the quiet category. Ultra-quiet air compressors emit very tolerable levels of noise.

Exposure Levels (DB) Of Noise

It’s necessary to use earmuffs if you want to know how decibel levels work. The decibel (dB) is a standard unit for measuring audible sound. In most emerging cities with industrial hubs, factories must display noise pollution warning around their buildings.

As a safety health and environment practice, people need to know the range of decibels from machines when they visit factories. Novices might think there isn’t much difference between two close decibel values when they compare noise levels on charts.

Audibility is twice higher at 80 dB than at 70 dB. However, tolerance for exposure levels with noise above 95 dB is very slim. There is a risk of causing hearing damage with this decibel level when the exposure time lingers.

Operators need to shut down or dampen the noise of air compressors with intolerable decibel levels.

Common Causes Of The Air Compressor Noise

Air Compressor Size

There are different types and sizes of motors in air compressors. Pumping and intake of compressed air vary according to the equipment’s capacity. Consequently, bigger air compressor systems take-in and send more air because of their engine power.

This operation tends to generate much noise than small air compressors with low engine strength.

Before an upgrade or installation, remember that the quietness of air compressors depend on their components’ quality and design.

Noise From Air Intake

Air intakes by air compressors generate much noise and cause the equipment to vibrate. This noise and vibration levels occur because of the activities of components like pulleys and filters. During the intake or air, these components ensure the filtration and compression of atmospheric air through different units. It’s this phase of air compression that often produces the loudest noise.

Noise From Air Exhaust

Noise levels from exhaust pipes rank lower than air intake components. The internal combustion engine must emit the byproducts of its fuel and air compression process.

Noise From Vibration

Clamps, pulley wheels, loose bolts, and nuts vibrate. It’s a common occurrence in mechanical equipment. However, the design and structure of air compressors might influence vibration levels.

Usually, air compressors tend to vibrate when they have wrong installation and poor balance on platforms. Vibrations are more disturbing because they cause movements and noise. Also, components with hollow parts in air compressors will vibrate.

How To Dampen Air Compressors’ Sound

You can ensure that air compressors run with less noise before or after the installation. There’s a range of materials for reducing air compressor noise. Manufacturers don’t teach buyers how to dampen noise levels of air compressor s because it’s not in the operating manual.

Quieting Air Compressor

With this guide, there’s an opportunity to learn about ultra-quiet air compressors and how to reduce noise levels. As an avid DIYer, it was easy for me to understand these concepts.

Choose Air Compressors With The Right Type Of Components

Components of an air compressor come from a range of materials. The material type rubber tubes and metals determine how loud an air compressor sounds. You should expect cheaper models of air compressors to have low-quality materials and loud noise.

However, modern air compressor models with superior materials like PORTER-CABLE and DEWALT can run with ultra-quiet sounds. Also, you will see belt-driven and direct-drive compressor models with similar specifications of decibel levels.

After installing these machines, one of the models will sound differently. Manufacturers use different quality of materials for air compressors. So, checking the dB level with decibel meters might give an idea of the noise level before you pick any product.

Installation Platforms

During installation, where you place a new air compressor is important. Except you are buying portable air compressor brands with soundproof cabinets like the SPC03 California Air Tools.

Their operating noise is low (below 55 dB), and the tolerance level is high. Otherwise, install regular air compressors that produce between 70 to 90 dB of noise during operations with dampeners. As an air compressor noise suppressor, platforms with soft pads are cost-effective to install.

Dampening materials stay on concrete and wooden platforms before technicians install air compressors. These materials are often made from thick pads of rubber sheets to reduce vibration noise levels. However, installers and operators should ensure zero levels of safety hazards.

Usually, the risk of fire emergency with air compressors reduces when there’s no contact between dampeners and mufflers. After running for about an hour, we expect the air compressor exhaust silencer to be very hot. 

“Manufacturers recommend that hot parts of exhaust systems shouldn’t be close to inflammable materials”

Attach The Air Compressor Muffler To Intake Hoses

A direct connection between the air compressor muffler and intake air hoses can reduce noise levels. The impact of noise and vibration is higher with exposure to moving parts of mechanical equipment. You can have a difference of 4 dB with the connection of intake-air hoses to mufflers.

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Since air helps to disperse sound, an ideal location for this connection is an outdoor space around air compressors.

Attach Rubber Grommets To Air Compressor Motors

One of the common types of noise-suppression materials for air compressors’ motor is the rubber grommet. Normally, thick rubber grommets act anti-vibration pads and dampeners for air compressor motors.

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The ideal point of attachment is between the air compressor’s frame and the motor’s mounting bracket. Before using this method, you’ll need to hire a technician or acquire some technical skills. You can hasten the learning process by using some online resources like YouTube videos.

Soundproof Air Compressor Boxes

Depending on the buyer’s budget, we recommended air compressors with noise-suppression housings. Normally, housings (casings) are metal structures for quieting air compressors and mechanical equipment.

An air compressor sound enclosure might have sturdy exterior materials. It uses special built-in materials to dampen vibrations and noise. Also, the air compressor silencer box comes in different dimensions an designs. Use a soundproof box for an air compressor if your production plant is close to a residential area.

Manufacturers of pneumatic systems for industrial applications often sell soundproof boxes with built-in air compressor units. You’ll see special types for oil-less and electric air compressors online.

Use Wall Enclosures

Generally, pneumatic and power tools have roaring decibel levels of noise. An acoustic foam panel is a board that insulates sound from equipment. This material can absorb high-pitch and mid-range frequencies of noise.

Applying the right installation techniques can reduce air compressor noise levels. 

To reduce the noise of compression, you’ll need building materials and sound blankets with special properties. When planning to install in a fixed location, it’s important to get the dimensions of the enclosure.

Also, a soundproof enclosure improves the efficiency and lifespan of mechanical machines. However, the enclosing walls should have should allow cross ventilation of air to cool the machine. Avid DIYers can construct a soundproof enclosure for air compressor units with cut-to-size Medium-density fiberboard (MDF) sheets.

Installing An Air Compressor Silencer

The air compressor intake silencer and filters act like mufflers. They are not alternatives to the air compressor intake muffler. As special components for quieting air compressor noise levels, these accessories have different material strengths.

Manufacturers use several air compressor silencers and filters to dampen the high volume of noise. With a combination of silencing elements and air filters, it shouldn’t be a hassle to achieve your goal. However, intake air-hoses and silencers vary according to air compressors’ sizes.

Instead of fabricating a silencer, get the size of your intake air-hose and match with a corresponding silencer size.

Take Health And Safety Training

Safety awareness is important for operators to make air compressors quieter and efficient. According to occupational health experts, noise from mechanical tools can cause maintenance costs, fatigue, and deafness.

These problems might increase when operators lack the basic safety knowledge of using air compressors. Parts of mechanical equipment like casings, frames, pulleys, and panels can cause vibrations.

Health and safety professionals recommend ways of easing radiated sounds. While technical skills are insufficient, a combination of safety training prevents the effects of noise pollution.

Use Earplugs Or Muffs

Decibel ratings are important in avoiding equipment failure and safety threats. Operators need to apply basic training in safety tips before they run air compressors. The goal is to make air compressors quieter with safe with personal protective equipment.

Normally, manufacturers of mechanical equipment add caution signs for safe operations. Like power requirements, air compressor operators need to obey instructions that promote the safety of colleagues and workspaces.

Everyone thinks about safety when there are potential hazards. However, PPEs like earplugs and muffs can minimize the risks of noise pollution. The only drawback is that people without earplugs will feel the effects of noisy air compressors.

More Solution For A Quiet Air Compressor

Materials like a sound deadening muffler wrap, and an air compressor sound blanket work like other solutions in this article.

Lubricators For Bearings

It’s easier to tighten any loose part on the exterior of mechanical equipment than to grease the bearings of their internal components. There’s a risk of mechanical breakdown when bearings of pulley systems and bolts are slack.

By understanding how air compressors work, you can save huge maintenance costs. Normally, air compressors with hard-to-reach greasing ports need maintenance technicians to apply automatic lubricators. Also, air compressor operators need hands-on experience to apply the same technique.

To overcome this challenge, we shall focus on greasing your air compressor’s bearings in this segment of our guide. We recommend the same technique if you are searching for how to quiet an oil-less air compressor.

Is The Air Compressor Making Weird Noise?

Dealing with noise is not easy. When bearings vibrate, there’s a chance of correcting the error with lubricants. Usually, it’s double jeopardy when the fault takes a long time to detect. Different brands of air compressor motors need specific greasing techniques.

To grease bearings in sealed compartments, a technician has to remove other components. After confirmation of the source of weird noise, you can apply grease to the bearing and its seals.

Avoid Over-Greasing

Apply caution when greasing a small air compressor like the 2.5 HP Makita. Also, applying excess lubrication on the bearing elements of the Bostitch 135 PSI air compressor can increase its operating temperature. It’s essential to determine how much oil your machine needs.

Otherwise, you might trigger a churning effect that prevents air compressors from operating at optimum levels.

Air Compressor Maintenance

Like the industrial types, the home air compressor needs regular maintenance to keep them efficient. You can use a checklist to schedule preventive, and cleaning of your equipment. Generally, air compressors and power tools require technical skills to optimize their efficiency.

It might be easy to silence air compressor noises and vibrations. When the air compressor won’t build pressure, get a technician.


During your next project, you can work productively in an environment without noise pollution. There are many options for reducing noise and vibrations from air compressors in this guide. Since mechanical equipment produces high levels of decibels, safety is key in guaranteeing conducive workspaces.

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