6 Best Quiet 20-Gallon Air Compressors of 2020

Last update: Oct 25, 2020

An air compressor can help you do a lot of things like inflating a paddling pool at your home or replacing a fuel filter in your car. While air compressors come in various sizes, many people choose the 20-gallon capacity because it’s good for multiple purposes. But they can be noisy as well, so how do you find the best quiet 20-gallon air compressor?

Here are the best quiet 20-gallon air compressors you can buy in 2020:

  • Best Overall: DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 20-Gallon Portable Air Compressor
  • Best For Air Wrench: Industrial Air IL1682066.MN
  • Best For Detailing Cars: Stealth 20 Gallon Ultra Quiet Air Compressor
  • Best For Heavy-Duty Use: EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS
  • Best For Air Ratchets: NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor
  • Best For Small Work Areas: Eagle EA-6500
6 Best Quiet 20-Gallon Air Compressors
Best Overall
DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 20-Gallon Portable Air Compressor
    Best For Air Wrench
    Industrial Air IL1682066.MN
      Best For Detailing Cars
      Stealth 20 Gallon Ultra Quiet Air Compressor
        Best For Heavy-Duty Use
        EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS
          Best For Air Ratchets
          NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor
            Best For Small Work Areas
            Eagle EA-6500

              Best Overall: DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 20-Gallon Portable Air Compressor

              DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 20-Gallon Portable Air Compressor
              DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 20-Gallon Portable Air Compressor
              8Good
              Pros
              • Reliable – backed by 1-year parts and 2-year pump warranty
              • Durable – feature dual-voltage induction motor, a high-flow regulator, and a cast iron twin-cylinder pump
              • Convenient – include synthetic oil in the package
              Cons
              • A bit costly

              The DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 is our pick for the best overall performer this year because of many good reasons. Brand reputation aside, it’s a reliable option with an emphasis on a 1-year warranty for all parts and a 2-year pump warranty.

              The construction is quite heavy-duty, featuring a dual-voltage induction motor, a high-flow regulator, and a cast iron twin-cylinder pump that’s already oil-lubricated before shipping.

              In the package, you’ll receive synthetic oil as well, which comes in handy for instant use.

              Many users also love it for quiet operation, perfect for a woodworker or home mechanics.

              DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 20-Gallon Portable Air Compressor Specifications

              Size

              32 x 21 x 32 inches

              Horsepower

              1.9 hp.

              Noise Rating (DBA)

              78

              CFM @ 90 PSI

              5.7 CFM

              CFM @ 40 PSI

              7.0 CFM

              Maximum Pressure

              155 PSI

              Highlight Features

              Backed by 1-year parts and 2-year pump warranty

              Feature dual-voltage induction motor, a high-flow regulator, and a cast iron twin-cylinder pump

              Include synthetic oil in the package

              Verdict

              The DEWALT DXCMPA1982054 is built with durability, reliability, and convenience, making it the best overall option in our review roster this year.

              Best For Air Wrench: Industrial Air IL1682066.MN

              Industrial Air IL1682066.MN
              Industrial Air IL1682066.MN
              8.6Great
              Pros
              • Dependable - CSA listed and UL certified
              • Various applications - a 1.6 HP dual-voltage induction motor
              • Maneuverable - two pneumatic tires
              Cons
              • Not lightweight
              • The cooling solution could be better

              For those garage owners who are in need of a 20-gallon air compressor for driving air wrench, brad nailer, or air ratchet, this is our recommendation.

              It is easy to use, super-quiet, and dependable. It’s CSA listed and UL certified, features a cast-iron, V-twin, oil-lubricated pump, and a 1.6 HP dual-voltage induction motor designed for both 120V outlet and 240V applications.

              While the product functions excellently, we do appreciate that it is attached to two pneumatic tires for maneuverability.

              Plus, it’s backed by a two-year limited warranty.

              Industrial Air IL1682066.MN Specifications

              Size

              28.5 x 19.75 x 48.5 inches

              Horsepower

              1.6 HP

              CFM @ 90 PSI

              5. 3 CFM

              CFM @ 40 PSI

              6. 2 CFM

              Maximum Pressure

              135 max psi

              Highlight Features

              CSA listed and UL certified

              A 1.6 HP dual-voltage induction motor

              Two pneumatic tires

              Verdict

              If you’re looking for the best quiet 20-gallon air compressor for air wrench, the Industrial Air IL1682066.MN is our best bet.

              Best For Detailing Cars: Stealth 20 Gallon Ultra Quiet Air Compressor

              Stealth 20 Gallon Ultra Quiet Air Compressor
              Stealth 20 Gallon Ultra Quiet Air Compressor
              8.4Good
              Pros
              • Offer 3x longer life & 80% quieter - STEALTH innovative quiet system technology
              • Safe and sturdy - meets ETL safety standards & Q235B alloy metal heavy duty housing structure build
              • User-friendly - the low-voltage and cold-weather start
              Cons
              • Unclear instructions

              If you love using air when detailing cars, we suggest trying this option by Steath. It is created using STEALTH innovative quiet system technology which qualifies for 3x longer life (more than 1000 hours) and 80% quieter than traditional designs.

              Playing a part in its decent longevity is the Q235B alloy metal heavy duty housing structure build. In fact, it meets ETL safety standards.

              It is versatile. The air compressor offers 5CFM at 90 psi and 6 CFM at 40 psi, along with 150 maximum psi, which is powerful enough to support different applications.

              Besides, it’s easy to use, especially during the winter thanks to the low-voltage and cold-weather start.

              Stealth 20 Gallon Ultra Quiet Air Compressor Specifications

              Size

              19.67 x 17.52 x 41.81 inches

              Horsepower

              1.8 HP

              Noise Rating (DBA)

              68

              CFM @ 90 PSI

              5 CFM

              CFM @ 40 PSI

              6CFM

              Maximum Pressure

              150 PSI

              Highlight Features

              STEALTH innovative quiet system technology

              Meets ETL safety standards & Q235B alloy metal heavy duty housing structure build

              The low-voltage and cold-weather start

              Verdict

              The Stealth 20 Gallon Ultra Quiet Air Compressor is powerful and versatile, which is perfect for different applications, including car-detailing.

              Best For Heavy-Duty Use: EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS

              EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS
              EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS
              9Outstanding
              Pros
              • Superb reliability and durability - cylinder valves and head, and heavy gauge steel cylinders
              • Emit 80% less sound than comparable 2HP air compressors - dual intake filtration
              • Minimize wear and tear - solid copper windings
              Cons
              • Pressure regulator and switch feel cheap

              EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS is not your ordinary home-use air compressor, but a commercial-grade pump designed with cylinder valves and head, and heavy gauge steel cylinders.

              In comparison between them, this option – while highlighting superb reliability and durability – can handle heavy-duty use with little noise. It is stated to emit 80% less sound than comparable 2HP air compressors, all thanks to the dual intake filtration.

              On the other hand, the solid copper windings minimize wear and tear efficiently. Not to mention that it’s backed by a two-year limited warranty.

              EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS Specifications

              Size

              17.72 x 17.72 x 44.88 inches

              Horsepower

              2 HP

              Noise Rating (DBA)

              41 @ 3 ft.

              CFM @ 90 PSI

              5.77 CFM

              CFM @ 40 PSI

              8.39 CFM

              Maximum Pressure

              125 PSI

              Highlight Features

              Cylinder valves and head, and heavy gauge steel cylinders

              Dual intake filtration

              Solid copper windings

              Verdict

              If you’re searching for a sturdier and stronger 20-gallon air compressor for heavy-duty use with little noise, the EMAX Compressor HP02P020SS fits the bill.

              Best For Air Ratchets: NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor

              NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor
              NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor
              8Good
              Pros
              • Long-lasting and good heat dissipation - ASME-certified belt drive oil-lubricated pump design
              • Limited oil consumption - dual ringed-style piston
              • Ideal for ratchet – 135 maximum psi pressure, 6.0 CFM at 40 psi, and 5 CFM at 90 psi
              • Great maneuverability – include a portability kit
              Cons
              • Wish the air pressure regulator was more functional
              • A little top-heavy
              • The position of the drain valve is not functional

              A strong point of this ASME-certified belt drive oil-lubricated air compressor is its unparalleled heat dissipation for no heat transferring between cylinders, which keeps it last a lot longer (20,000-hour of lifespan).

              The dual ringed-style piston is another key feature for longer head life and decreased oil consumption.

              But the real star is its 135 maximum psi pressure – enough for various applications, consisting of air ratchet.

              If only allowed mentioning only one more strength of this pump, we would talk about its maneuverability. In the package, it includes flat-free solid tires so transporting it isn’t a real matter to anyone.

              NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor Specifications

              Size

              22 x 23 x 43 inches

              Horsepower

              2 HP

              Noise Rating (DBA)

              80

              CFM @ 90 PSI

              5.0 CFM

              CFM @ 40 PSI

              6.0 CFM

              Maximum Pressure

              135 max. PSI

              Highlight Features

              ASME-certified belt drive oil-lubricated pump design

              Dual ringed-style piston

              135 maximum psi pressure, 6.0 CFM at 40 psi, and 5 CFM at 90 psi

              Verdict

              The NorthStar Single-Stage Portable Electric Air Compressor offers enough capacity for air ratchet. If that’s also what you are looking for, don’t hesitate to pick this.

              Best For Small Work Areas: Eagle EA-6500

              Eagle EA-6500
              Eagle EA-6500
              9Outstanding
              Pros
              • Easy to transport - rugged 8” flat-free tires & compact design
              • Able to pump air different tools at once – a built-in control panel
              • Last 4x longer than the average 'oil-free' air compressor - Low amp draw & dual air intake
              Cons
              • Expensive

              Eagle EA-6500 highlights a perfect balance between performance and comfort during the use, especially for the professional contractor. It’s also the quietest option in its class, along with the compact measurement and rugged 8” flat-free tires, making the unit ideal to work in small areas.

              It’s also praised for unbeatable air release due to the dual air intake.

              This feature also helps minimize wear and tear, resulting in expanded lifespan.

              A big bonus about it is you can freely use it for multiple tools at a time, thanks to the built-in control panel, including dual 'push to Lock' Quick couplers and an adjustable pressure regulator.

              Eagle EA-6500 Specifications

              Size

              21.64 x 18.66 x 45.96 inches

              Horsepower

              2.5 HP

              Noise Rating (DBA)

              53 dB from 25 feet away

              CFM @ 90 PSI

              6 CFM

              CFM @ 40 PSI

              7.9 CFM

              Maximum Pressure

              125 Psi

              Highlight Features

              Rugged 8” flat-free tires & compact design

              A built-in control panel

              Low amp draw & dual air intake

              Verdict

              Eagle EA-6500 emphasizes a compact and maneuverable design, along with its ultra-quiet operation, making the performance in those small work areas a lot comfier and more convenient.

              How To Choose The Best Quiet 20-Gallon Air Compressor?

              PSI Count for a Minute

              While many people pay attention to the CFM rating, you should also check the PSI (pressure per square) count based on the pressure your tools require.

              While most compressors offer 90 psi, mid-range and high-end machines can provide different CFM ratings at different PSI counts. This is what you should go for because you can carry out multiple projects or jobs requiring different levels of pressure.

              CFM Rating

              Cubic Feet Per Minute ratings or CFM ratings indicate how much air is supplied when a machine operates.

              If the CFM rating is too low, you won’t get enough air for your job, if the CFM rating is too high, you will go overboard. So, you should always maintain a balance.

              Keep in mind that the higher the CFM rating is at a PSI count, the better a machine is. So, if you can balance these ratings well, your machine will be very quiet.

              For a 90psi count, you should choose a compressor with a CFM rating between 0.6 and 5.

              A compressor with 0.6-20 CFM is suitable as a supplementary machine for a larger compressor. One with 3.0 CFM is suitable for light tools. Meanwhile, a 4-5 CFM compressor is suitable for a workshop with multiple tools.

              Oil-Free or Oil-Lubricated?

              When shopping for an air compressor, you will have to choose between an oil-free machine and an oil-lubricated one. Here’s how they differ:

              • In oil-lubricated machines, the parts are lubricated with a little oil. This helps manage sound levels, so they are also quieter. They also last longer. However, oil-lubricated machines require high maintenance and pose risks of oil dripping.

              • In oil-free machines, there are no lubricants at all. They are cheaper to run because you don’t have to buy oil, lower-maintenance.

              If a low noise level is your highest priority, the oil-lubricated machine seems right, but keep in mind that there is a quiet oil-free machine, too.

              Which Brands Make The Best Quiet 20-Gallon Air Compressor?

              DEWALT

              Starting with woodworking machines in 1922, DEWALT is now a renowned brand in the market of power tools. Its products are trusted for productivity and versatility to optimize workhouse solutions. One thing for sure, its machines are tough.

              Industrial Air

              With 25 years of experience in the industry, this brand offers a wide range of air compressors for you to choose from. Its strength lies in the in-house engineering and development.

              Stealth

              If you are looking for quietness, this is probably the first brand to look at. It specifically works on quiet technology for its products, which also deliver portability, durability, and various features.

              EMAX

              If you want an air compressor expert, you must try this brand as this is the only product category it covers. The brand focuses on making the most reliable compressors on the market with the highest quality for you.

              NorthStar

              Founded in the early 1990s, this brand specializes in making air compressors among some other products. The reason why you should look at its product is the balance of quality and affordability.

              Eagle

              This brand offers air compressors as well as related tools. Here, you will find the highest-quality machines on the market.

              FAQs

              Is a 20 gallon air compressor big enough?

              Yes, it is. This is the recommended capacity for consumers.

              Is a 20-gallon air compressor suitable for business use?

              Yes, the 20-gallon size is suitable for business use and for simple DIY projects too.

              Why is my compressor so loud?

              The most common source of noise in an air compressor is the friction, where the metal hits and slides against metal.

              What can I do with a 20-gallon air compressor?

              An air compressor can help you with several things, such as spray painting, construction, agriculture, engine, heating, and ventilation.

              How to use a 20-gallon air compressor?

              Follow these steps:

              • Check the air compressor to see if it’s oil-free or oil-lubricated.

              • Fix the hose to the regulator valve.

              • Place the power tool you will use to the hose.

              • Plug the compressor into a socket.

              • Pull the safety valve and start the machine.

              • Wait while the tank pressurizes.

              • Find out the required pressure for the tool you’re about to use.

              • Ensure the pressure on the compressor matches that of the tool.

              • Start using the tool.

              Conclusion

              Choosing the best quiet 20-gallon air compressors might take a little time and research, but we have taken the time to do the leg work for you.

              And this is also the end of our complete buying guide.

              Hopefully, the article has been helpful in your search for a quiet 20-gallon air compressor. Thanks a lot for reading!


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