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August 23, 2023 5 min read

It’s hard to fit a cardio machine in a small home. And it’s even more challenging when you have neighbors who can hear every bump and thump during workout time. In that case, consider getting a quiet elliptical exercise machine for apartment use instead. The elliptical trainer not only has many benefits, but more importantly, it is generally not too loud for an apartment or a tight space as it is low impact. That means its base or frame does not hit the floor much during your workout. In the following article, let’s discuss these features more to understand what makes elliptical exercise machine ideal for you and your apartment neighbors. I’m also sharing some tips on how to lessen elliptical exercise machine noise output. Please read on.

the Elliptical Trainer Has Many Benefits

What makes an elliptical exercise machine loud or quiet?
Some elliptical exercise machines are noisier than other similar units. And in most cases, these are the budget elliptical exercise machines. These models often have low-quality parts and materials that are less stable and durable. They tend to wobble and pose weight distribution issues that, in turn, generate noise. So, if you want a quiet elliptical exercise machine for apartment use, it’s best to consider options within the mid-price range. You also need to check the following features.

1. Resistance mechanism
There are currently two types of resistance systems for elliptical exercise machines. One is air or fan based, and the other is magnetic. With a magnetic elliptical exercise machine, you can adjust the resistance levels through the console by boosting the strength of the magnets. This shift doesn’t generate any sound at all. On the other hand, an air elliptical exercise machine requires you to pedal faster for higher resistance. The friction from the rotating fan, however, creates a lot of noise and vibration as you pick up the pace. There are quieter air elliptical exercise machines available, though. But for maximum noise reduction, an elliptical cross trainer with magnet-based adjustable resistance is best.

2. Flywheel weight
A flywheel is an essential part of your elliptical exercise machine that moves its pedals and handlebars. You can find it at the front, center or rear end of your machine, depending on its design. As this part is in charge of making your machine move and work, the flywheel weight determines how smooth and quiet your workout will be. Specifically, a heavier flywheel keeps the machine more stable, so there’s less floor impact. Also, the extra weight makes the moving parts rattle less, which reduces noise output. Elliptical exercise machine flywheel weights range from 5 to 18 kg. And a quiet elliptical exercise machine for apartment use should have a 9-kg flywheel at least. But you can go higher than this if your space allows it. Note that flywheel weight is also a good indicator of your elliptical exercise machine’s lifespan.

3. Drive system
A relevant part of your elliptical trainer flywheel is the drive system. This part fits around the wheel and pedals to make them work together. And like exercise bikes, this can be either a chain or belt drive. Most modern elliptical exercise machines come with a belt drive system that is much quieter and smoother. Belt-driven elliptical exercise machines are also low maintenance.

4. Rear stabilizers
Rear stabilizers or adjustable levellers are parts that keep your elliptical exercise machine stable on uneven surfaces. It’s best to look for a machine that includes these parts to avoid wobble-generated noise. Some elliptical exercise machine brands sell these separately, though. In that case, make sure you’re buying a compatible leveller. Check your instruction manual for correct parts attachment as elliptical exercise machine noise can also come from improper assembly.

Are there ways to keep an elliptical exercise machine quiet?
You might already have a budget elliptical exercise machine in your apartment. Or perhaps, you have an old one generating more noise than usual. If that’s the case, you can do one of these solutions to keep your elliptical exercise machine quieter.

1. Place a rubber mat underneath your elliptical exercise machine
A rubber mat is a multipurpose accessory. Aside from absorbing noise and vibration, it can also keep your elliptical exercise machine stable.

2. Clean and maintain your elliptical exercise machine regularly
Elliptical machines have metal parts prone to dust build-up and rusting. Without proper cleaning and lubrication, these can affect machine performance and lifespan. They also cause squeaking noises.

3. Check for any loose nuts and bolts
Retighten elliptical exercise machine screws occasionally to keep its parts aligned and noise-free. Make sure to add this task to your maintenance checklist.

4. Replace old parts when needed
A worn-out belt, for example, can create a noisy elliptical exercise machine. So, look for a compatible replacement and ask for professional help to install it if needed.

What other factors make a good elliptical exercise machine for apartments?
A quiet elliptical exercise machine for apartment use may be at the top of your buy list. But there are other things to consider. Here are some of them.

1. Compact size or foldable feature
Elliptical exercise machines can be bulky, and most apartment units do not have the luxury of space. So before buying a machine, find the spot where you want to put it. Then take measurements and choose an elliptical cross trainer with the correct size. Some models fold up, too, so you can keep them out of the way after your workout.

Choose an Elliptical Cross Trainer with the Correct Size

2. Ceiling and machine height
The elliptical exercise machine motion moves the rider up and then down. But most apartments have low ceilings. And so, you need to have the ideal height and enough ceiling clearance to work out comfortably. Generally, any elliptical exercise machine should fit in an apartment with a ceiling height of at least 274 cm (9 ft). The elliptical exercise machine users at home should also be 183 cm tall (6 ft) or below. If you have a ceiling height lower than this or have taller riders, check if your elliptical exercise machine still allow at least 43 cm of clearance. A machine with a low profile might suit your space best. Otherwise, you might have to consider getting other alternatives to an elliptical exercise machine.

3. Weight
Some elliptical exercise machines can be heavy and a hassle to take to an apartment unit several floors up. Also, if you tend to move from place to place, a heavy machine can be problematic to pack. So, when choosing a quiet elliptical exercise machine for your apartment, consider looking for a lightweight yet durable machine. Alternatively, you can allocate a budget for delivery and assembly services.

The elliptical trainer is one of the best choices to help you stay fit and healthy. But if you are working out in an apartment, you need to be more discerning when choosing a machine. Aside from checking the noise output, its construction, size, height, and weight are also worth considering. But good thing there are tons of elliptical exercise machine options suitable for small spaces with neighbors.

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