Exercise bikes are generally thought of as being a fairly quiet form of exercise.
But this is not always the case.
If your exercise bike has a heavy flywheel and you use it on a hard wooden or tiled floor then significant vibrations will be generated which will easily be heard through in the room below and adjacent rooms as vibrations will travel across the floor and through cavity walls.
If you live in an apartment or shared house then keeping the peace by exercising quietly is a must to maintain a peaceful life.
Fortunately, we have done the hard work for you and put together a list of quiet exercise bikes that shouldn’t make too much noise no matter how hard you train.
All indoor bikes are not created equal, there are a huge range of bikes available varying from as little as $70 to well into the $1000s.
To make a well-informed purchase you need to first consider exactly what you need. Ask yourself the following questions:
If your just plan to use the bike 2-3 times a week for short (30 mins or less) sessions at relatively low intensities then a cheaper bike will happily cope with that sort of volume.
If you need something that is absolutely dead silent then you may need to spend more on a bike which uses magnetic resistance and has a belt driven flywheel.
Higher end bikes are better engineered (providing you choose a good one!) and therefore are less prone to creaking and squeaking during use.
Top Tip: If you already own an actual bike (for cycling outdoors) then you could save both space and money by buying a quiet bike trainer to temporarily turn your bicycle into a stationary exercise bike.
For most users upright bikes are the best option as they allow for high-intensity workouts while taking up minimal space.
However recumbent bikes are a good option for people who suffer from back or joint pain as the body is better supported while still allowing your legs to cycle freely.
Recumbent bikes create much smaller vibrations than upright bikes because most of your body weight is supported by the soft seat with minimal weight being transferred through the pedals into the bike frame.
The way in which your stationary bike increases the resistance has a big impact on the noise output.
Typically indoor bikes use friction driven resistance where a soft brake is incrementally applied to the flywheel making it harder for the wheel to turn. This creates a ‘whooshing’ sound caused by the wheel rubbing against the soft brake pad.
Magnetic resistance systems are much quieter as they use magnets so that there is no direct contact with the wheel.
Magnetic resistance bikes require less maintenance as the parts don’t wear down as quickly. The one drawback is that the resistance levels are much lower than what is achievable using a friction resistance system.
Air resistance bikes work in a similar way to many rowing machines, the pedals drive a big fan the harder you pedal the more air resistance there is.
These sort of bikes can be very noisy so we don’t recommend them for anyone looking for a quiet indoor bike.
You can spend as little as $70 or as much as several $1000s on an exercise bike, we recommend you avoid either extreme.
For most people looking to get a serious workout in 3-5 times a week a budget of around $300 will get you a bike that can give you a great workout, won’t require tons of maintenance and will be quiet!
For the more serious cyclist, a budget of $600+ will allow you to get a quiet bike that can handle some serious intensity.
Buying a quiet exercise bike will definitely help reduce noise vibrations however there are other things you can do in addition to getting a new bike which will help make your workouts almost silent…
Exercise bikes create vibrations which will travel through your floor and potentially irritate your downstairs neighbour.
A great way of blocking the transfer of sound through the floor is to use a treadmill matt (despite the name they’re used for all types of exercise machines).
These are great at deadening vibrations before they reach your floor thereby silencing the noise.
The best treadmill mats are made from rubber and are at least 1 cm thick.
Exercise bikes may also may noise if they are not well maintained, worn parts can quickly become squeaky and rattle when used.
Ensuring that your bike is regularly oiled will help reduce sound coming from it. You should aim to oil the belt/chain, wheel bearings and pedals every 6-12 months.
Maintaining an exercise bike doesn’t need to be a big job, because they are stationary significantly less maintenance is required than is necessary on a road bike.
We recommend you perform the following checks once a year:
These checks will reduce friction and wear on your exercise bike, this will prevent it from squeaking and will also extend its life span.
When using your exercise bike you should wipe it down every time after use over time sweat can damage your bike.
You should also aim to ensure that it gets used at least once a week, bikes which are left to stand unused for long periods of time will degrade and the bearings will slowly seize up which will only make it harder to use and noisier!
Using your exercise bike above your neighbours' bedroom or their living room is not a good idea as these are places where they will spend significant amounts of time and will be more likely to hear you.
Instead, put your exercise bike in the hallway or kitchen or somewhere where its impact on your neighbours will be reduced.
If you don’t know the layout of your downstairs neighbours apartment you can always ask.
If that’s not an option put your stationary bike in a carpeted room or (as we mentioned above) use a mat to help make it quieter.
This is an obvious point but one that is worth mentioning, if all the options above don’t work for you then your only remaining option (other than buying one of the super quiet exercise bikes we review further down this page) is to exercise at times when you know your neighbours won’t be disturbed such as during the day when they are out.
If you’re looking for a stationary bike that is quiet but can deliver an effective workout then you’re in the right place.
Check out our reviews below.
The U.S.A made Keiser M3 is a top end indoor bike.
It delivers a great workout and can be pushed to high intensities while delivering a smoothride and remaining whisper quiet.
It is perfect for cardiovascular conditioning and high-intensity training sessions and indeed any sort of cycling which needs to be done quietly.
Keiser Cycles have been developing world-leading exercise bikes for over a decade and the M3 is a testament to their commitment to quality.
It is built to last. Made from materials which are corrosion resistant and features a magnetic resistance system which neither wears the bike mechanisms nor creates any additional noise.
The way the bike is engineered means that next to no maintenance is required.
All the parts are perfectly balanced meaning that noise is absolutely minimal.
The Keiser M3 comes with a computer which you can use to measure:
As you would expect from a top end exercise bike it is fully adjustable with a height adjustable seat, and adjustable pedals so regardless of your height or foot size the Keiser M3 will be able to accommodate you.
It comes with a 6-month warranty so if you experience any problems during the first 6 months of use you can get a replacement...we’d be surprised if you needed to use it though as the build quality and durability of the Keiser are second to none!
The Ancheer is a great budget alternative to the Keiser M3. It is a solid bike which is suitable for intense fast-paced workouts as well as slow and steady exercise.
It features a belt driven flywheel which gives a smooth and quiet workout no matter how hard or fast you go on it.
As is typical on flywheel bikes it features an emergency quickstop brake to stop the flywheel as fast as possible, this has plenty of padding so using it won’t make much noise.
The Ancheer is a good quality bike which is ideal for home use and is very competitively priced. Similar bikes usually cost well in excess of $300 but this retails for significantly less than that (click the amazon link above to see the exact price).
Assembly is very simple; all that is required is for the seat and pedals to be screwed in then you’re ready to get riding.
We recommend that you pair the bike with some matting to ensure that noise is kept to an absolute minimum.
The Ancheer also features:
The Efitment recumbent exercise bike is great for steady state cardio and lower intensity workouts. It is the perfect exercise solution for anyone who has problems with back pain when hunched over an upright bike.
The Efitment can accommodate user weight of up to 300lb (136kg), it allows you to sit in comfort while your legs cycle and burn those calories.
The Efitment uses magnetic resistance with 8 resistance settings to make it harder, magnetic resistance systems are much quieter than bikes that use gears or tension knobs.
Recumbent bikes are generally much quieter than upright bikes because their frame does not have to deal with the same amount of force driving through it so you get less creaking sounds from it.
The Efitment bike features:
If you’re looking for a quiet exercise bike you can’t go wrong with a recumbent bike as they transfer much fewer vibrations into the ground than uprights.
And you certainly can’t go wrong with the NordicTrack Elite recumbent bike which is one of the top recumbent bikes available.
It has a very comfortable seat with plenty of lumbar support - as well as supporting your back and giving you a more comfortable ride this has the added benefit of helping to deaden noise.
It features a (quiet) magnetic resistance system with 25 different resistance settings and 32 inbuilt workouts for you to try.
One of the cool features of this bike that you don’t see many others is that you can get an iFit subscription which will allow you to connect your bike to Google Maps and replicate what it is like to cycle anywhere in the world!
The Fitleader FS1 is a brilliant upright exercise bike packed with quality features that you wouldn’t usually expect at this price point.
But first...how quiet is it?
It’s not the quietest exercise bike on this page but it a lot quieter than many of its competitors due to some handy features:
The Fitleader FS1 includes a heart rate monitor which measures your heart rate via the handgrip pulse monitors, this is then displayed on the LCD screen so you can carefully monitor your training intensity and stay within a target heart rate.
The bike is fully adjustable and the lightweight frame (weighing 69 lb / 31kg) will accommodate users up to 293lb (133kg) in weight and from 5”1 to 6”2 in height.
It has 8 magnetic resistance levels and the LCD screen allows you to monitor time, speed, distance travelled, calories burned, odometer, RPM and your pulse.
This mid-priced bike is a good option for someone who plans on semi-regular use (30 minutes - up to 5 times a week).
A note of caution; if your bodyweight is in the upper end of what this bike can handle (293lb / 133kg) then it may not be as quiet as you would hope if you go all out on it.
The Sunny is a great budget exercise bike. It is a solid well-built bike with a sturdy frame which weighs in at 61.7lb (28kg) and can support a user of up to 265lb (120kg) in body weight.
But how quiet is it I hear you ask..?
..well, it features:
..so, all in all, it’s not the quietest but should be quiet enough to use in your bedroom or on a well-cushioned floor without disturbing your neighbour downstairs.
If you want to cycle in the room next to where the baby is sleeping it may be worth considering a model with a magnetic resistance system.
We recommend that you pair it with some matting to be certain that noise transfer through your floor is kept to an absolute minimum.
The Sunny SF-B1423 also features:
We hope this article was useful in helping you to find a quiet exercise bike that will allow you to keep up your fitness regime without disturbing anyone.
Don’t forget once you have bought your exercise bike there are still plenty of things you can do to ensure that sound is kept to an absolute minimum including things such as using rubber mats and carefully selecting the area where you place your bike.