Most Quiet Air Rifles for Neighborhood Use

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Air rifles can be a blast to use, but some people are no fun and would rather make a fuss if they listen to you “popping” your way to victory during a target practice competition. Plus, some air rifles are better for hunting if they don’t pop so loudly.

Noise is often the #1 issue looking for air rifles for pest control, or for hunting squirrels.

Let’s go over the most quiet air rifles for neighborhood use, as they’ll be a great choice for residential air rifle users. 

What is a Quiet Air Rifle?

A quiet air rifle is just that: an air rifle that doesn’t come with an annoying popping sound each time you pull the trigger. Quiet air rifles can still deliver excellent stopping power and allow you to hunt pests or partake in backyard plinking competitions with your friends all without annoying your neighbors. The fact of the matter is that many people find the popping sound from air rifles to be annoying, so quiet air rifles are a way to enjoy your hobby without setting the neighbors off.

How do these air rifles work? In a nutshell, the popping sound of an air rifle is the result of pressurized air emerging rapidly from the barrel of your weapon. The more pressurized the air within the weapon is, the louder the popping sound. This is why CO2 rifles and spring-loaded rifles sound louder than some other kinds(PCPs are definitely the quietest).

That being said, there are plenty of quieter air rifles that have special designs that muffle the sound. Some rifles muffle the sound because of the way they design their barrels, allowing the gas to disseminate later after the shot. Others may have multiple chambers or suppressors of other types.

Why Would You Need a Quiet Air Rifle?

Quiet air rifles are helpful for not annoying your neighbors when you invite your friends over for some backyard target shooting. But they can also be very helpful for hunting pests that will commonly scamper across your property.

The truth is that most pests that are appropriate for hunting with air rifles of any caliber tend to be small and skittish. These critters are likely to bolt at the first sign of trouble or when they think you’re sneaking up on them. Traditional firearms, if shot in the proximity of one of these animals, are likely to drive off any others for a short while before they return.

Quiet air rifles don’t have this disadvantage. You can use powerful but quiet air rifles to effectively hunt for vermin that are infesting your yard without driving all the others off where you can’t see them. In a way, quiet air rifles are the best extermination tools you can get.

Review of the Most Quiet Air Rifles

Best Overall – Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle

Pros
  • Recoil is very well negated
  • Very quiet operation due to barrel
  • Comes with accurate scope
  • Trigger is smooth and easy to use
Cons
  • Scope needs frequent calibration

The Gamo Swarm Maxxim Air Rifle can use either .177 or .22 caliber pellets and has a 10-round rotary-style magazine, meaning you’ll be able to fire 10 rounds before you need to reload the weapon. The excellent barrel is not only rifled and made of steel (which boosts accuracy), but it also has sound suppression tech built into its design.

To make things even better, this rifle is bolstered by the inert gas tech built into the rifle’s receiver, which boosts your accuracy even further and makes the rifle produce less recoil each time you pull the trigger. Speaking of trigger, this rifle’s is two-stage that facilitates a clean trigger pull each time you squeeze your finger.

Then there’s the recoil reducing rail built into the rifle’s frame, negating the majority of every instance of recoil. There’s a 3-9×40 scope included with the purchase and a shockwave absorber recoil pad. 

Bottom Line

In total, this rifle has everything you could want from a dedicated hunting or target shooting air rifle in general, not just for quiet neighborhood shooting. But its special sound suppressor barrel does a great job with that aspect, specifically.

Runner-Up – Hornet Maxxim Air Rifle

Pros
  • Very easy to use
  • Recoil is severely reduced
  • Fantastic power for each caliber of pellet
  • Two noise dampening chambers
Cons
  • Scope needs frequent calibration

This is another solid rifle choice for those who need a quiet weapon that won’t disturb the neighbors. It can also fire .177 or .22 caliber pellets and has two noise dampening chambers built into its design. This ensures that every round fired won’t pop as loudly as you are used to.

It also comes with an inert gas technology piston that replaces the spring, improving the terminal velocity of the pellets up to 1300 ft./s for .177 caliber pellets and 975 ft./s for .22. The smooth action pull trigger we referenced above returns here to keep every shot you make accurate and steady.

The recoil reducing rail and the 3-9×40 scope return as well. This rifle is very similar to our first pick, only secondary because of a slightly higher asking price.

Bottom Line

This is another fantastic yet quiet air rifle from Gamo, offering unparalleled performance and fantastic recoil reduction for all who use it.

Best for Backyard Pest Control – Gamo Silent Cat Air Rifle

Pros
  • Muffles its own sound by 52%
  • Comes with a 4 x 32 scope
  • .177 pellets are shot at 1200 ft./s
  • Skeleton stock keeps the build lightweight
Cons
  • Scope is a bit fragile
  • Trigger pull is a little light

This air rifle is set for use with .177 caliber pellets and can project them up to 1200 ft./s. It also comes with a 4 x 32 scope with the reins necessary to mount it on to the rifle’s receiver right out of the box. The skeleton stock installed at the end of the rifle keeps the entire build lightweight yet durable, making it extremely comfortable and easy to use.

This is a break barrel rifle, too, so each shot tends to be quite already, and you can fire a single pellet each time you load the spring. The synthetic stock is equipped with a noise damper that can reduce the sound of every shot you make by 52%. This should be more than enough for any neighborhood noise complaints you might have heard during your last backyard plinking session

This rifle also comes with a one-year limited warranty that covers manufacturer defects or any problems that arise from normal wear and tear. Therefore, this is a great weapon if you plan to use it frequently each time your friends come over; even if it falters, you can usually get it repaired or replaced without too much extra cost.

Bottom Line

This .177 air rifle does a great job of projecting rounds accurately and powerfully at a distance. But it can also muffle its own sound by more than half, which should be plenty for any neighbor concerned about curing your rifle go off as you shoot cans or other targets with your friends.

Best for Quiet Hunting – Hatsan Mod 130S Vortex QE .30 Caliber Air Rifle

Pros
  • Barrel is built with integrated suppressor
  • Has shock absorber system to reduce recoil
  • Comes with rail for attachments
  • Fires .30 caliber pellets, very powerful
Cons
  • A little pricey for some
  • Only fires one pellet at a time

Hatsan is simply one of our favorite air rifle brands. They’re known for impeccable quality and customer service.

This air rifle is more expensive than any other choice on our list, but it’s for good reason. It’s a break barrel air rifle that fires .30 caliber pellets, which are among the rarest and priciest you can find on the market. But these pellets are still valuable because they can stop larger animals and hit with more force than most others you use with air rifles.

Naturally, such a weapon produces a significant amount of recoil each time you pull the trigger. The rifle is therefore equipped with a shock absorber system that reduces that recoil. It’s also helped by a quiet energy integrated suppressor that limits the sound of every shot you take. As a result, this rifle is perfect for hunting animals on your property without disturbing the neighbors. You can even practice in your backyard without things getting too loud.

It’s also equipped with a dovetail or Picatinny combination rail at the top. This will allow you to add on your own attachments, like scopes or flashlights, at your leisure.

Bottom Line

This heavy-duty and powerful rifle is a perfect choice for those who need a quiet killing machine for hunting down vermin on your property without alarming the neighbors.

Best for the Budget – Crosman Thrasher Break Barrel Hunting Rifle

Pros
  • Limits on shots by about 40%
  • Has accurate barrel and durable stock
  • Comes with 4 x 32 scope
  • Trigger is two-stage and very smooth
Cons
  • Scope quality could be better

This air rifle is on the opposite side of the Budget spectrum and is quite affordable. It’s a break barrel rifle that fires .177 caliber pellets and has a rifled steel barrel. This design improves its accuracy at a distance and helps each pellet maintain its velocity for longer.

It’s also built than all-weather stock that can resist water and shock damage, improving the overall durability of the build. This rifle is also equipped with an SBD sound suppression system that suppresses each shot by about 40%, which is quite reasonable for an air rifle of this price.

Even better, it comes with a 4 x 32 scope and an adjustable two-stage trigger. Both of these additions will improve your accuracy overall and help you land shots on par with a more expensive air rifle.

Bottom Line

This air rifle is affordable but still of superior quality compared to many other rifles on the market. It also has a great sound suppression system, especially for the asking price.

What to Look For in a Quiet Air Rifle

When you’re looking for a quiet air rifle, think about these factors before you make a decision.

Caliber

Air rifles come in several different calibers or pellet sizes. .177 caliber air rifles are extremely common and fire a quick projectile that tends to be quite accurate and powerful enough to kill animals about the size of rabbits. 

.22 caliber or .25 caliber air rifles are more powerful and have more stopping power. These are okay for hunting larger animals like foxes and similar sized critters. But they aren’t quite as fast as .177 caliber rifles, so their accuracy may be diminished depending on the type of rifle you get and its general accuracy.

Type

There are also three main types of air rifles to choose from: spring piston, PCP, and compressed gas. Spring piston air rifles are super common and usually only fire a single pellet at a time. These require you to work a lever or break the barrel, which may require a lot of upper body strength.

PCP air rifles are typically very powerful and are pre-pumped with a hand mechanism that unleashes some pressurized air stored in the stock. These are usually quite quiet on their own but tend to be fairly expensive compared to the others.

CO2 or compressed gas air rifles are very easy to use and allow you to fire multiple shots before you need to replace the cartridge. But they aren’t super powerful, and you do have to pay more money every now and again to buy more cartridges.

Conclusion

Overall, each of these rifles will be quiet enough for neighborhood use, so focus on their other aspects and their prices to determine which one is perfect for your needs. Thank you very much for reading!

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