How To Make A Rowing Machine Quieter?

Rowing machines can get very loud when in operation, especially the higher-end rowing machines that have a fan built into the flywheel. 

In addition to creating noise that may be bothersome, this noise can also be detrimental to your fitness routine.

Let’s dive into today’s guide on how to make your rowing machine quieter to keep your neighbors happy.

Without further ado, let’s get right into it!

How To Make A Rowing Machine Quieter?

technogym rowing machine picture from my home gym

There are many ways to make your rowing machine quieter. Some of these include using protective floor mats, lowering the dumper lever, scheduling your intense workouts to the right times, lowering the handle height, and installing an additional sound dampener. 

By changing any of these settings, you can make your rowing machine quieter.

Let’s review each of the tips and tricks you can use to reduce the noise produced by your rowing machine:

1. Use Protective Floor Mats

You can try using a protective rubber mat underneath the equipment which can help absorb a lot of sound.

A floor mat will reduce the noise that the flywheel makes when it is spinning. 

Rowing on a wooden floor can cause some vibration and actually enhance the amount of noise created. That’s why it is highly recommended to place a Rubber protective floor mat to absorb the sound and vibration created by rowing machines.

Apart from protecting your machine against vibration and reducing the loud noise, a good flooring mat will also prevent damage to your floor, and stop particles such as dust and carpet fibers getting into your machine.

These are the best floor mat for a rowing machine to consider using in 2022:

Concept 2 Rower Mat

This flooring protective mat has been made primarily for the Concept2 and other rowing machine models. 

Well constructed with high Density Materials with 3mm in thickness to ensure there are no scratches or marks left in the floor due to rowing movement.

The Concept2 rower mat will also help reduce the air resistance loud sound produced during your rowing session.

MotionTex Exercise Equipment Mat

The MotionTex mat is a great product to use to protect your flat pile carpet and hard wooden floors from damage, noise, and vibration caused by your fitness equipment.

It has been designed with non-absorbent recycled PVC to repel water, sweat, grease, and other liquids during your intense rowing workout.

2. Add Additional Sound Dampening

Another way to reduce the noise made by your rowing machine is to put a sheet or towel under the footpads of the machine. 

The dampeners in the footpads will reduce the noise that the machine makes when you step on the footpads.

3. Decrease The Dampener 

A flywheel is like a fan on a car. It spins at a high RPM, which creates a lot of noise. It is like a window on a car that you can close when you are not using the car. 

The damper setting on your exercise rower is the adjustable lever on the side of the flywheel housing (fab cage) that controls how much air flows into the cage. 

It moves up and down between 1 and 10. When the tab is at 1, it limits the amount of air allowed into the fan blade; at a 10 it allows all the air into the fan blade.

The Higher damper settings allow more air into the flywheel housing. While lower damper settings allow less air into the flywheel housing, making it easier to spin the flywheel.

It is highly recommended to set your rowing machine damper setting quite low to allow less air to pass, thus less noise to be created.

4. Schedule Your Workouts

small clock in a white background

Try to make your exercise sessions until you know your family or neighbors won’t be home.

For example, if you get home at 4:30 and you know your neighbor gets home around 6:00, then working out as soon as you get home would be the best thing to do.

If you consider yourself a more advanced rower, you can try scheduling your high-intensity workouts for these times.

5. Set the Handle Height

One of the best ways to reduce the noise made by your rowing machine is to set the handle height appropriately. 

If you adjust the handle height to be lower than normal, the flywheel will cause less noise while in use

If you set the handle height higher than normal, the flywheel will cause a bit more noise while in use. 

If the handle height on your rowing machine is unusually high, it will cause the flywheel to spin at a higher RPM, which will make the noise that it makes louder.

Lowering the handle height on your rower will help reduce this noise.

6. Decrease the Stroke Rate

Stroke rate is the speed at which the handle is pulled back and released. The slower the stroke rate is, the quieter the machine will be. 

If your rowing machine has a stroke rate of 8, for example, you could try reducing the stroke rate to 6. 

This way the flywheel will turn at a slower speed, which will cause less noise while in use. 

If you have a rowing machine with a stroke rate of 8 and have tested different stroke rates, you may want to try a stroke rate of 6 to see if this is quieter than the other stroke rates.

Wrapping up

Rowing machines can be quite noisy because of the type of construction and internal components.

Fortunately, today’s article covers the possible ways to make your rowing machine quieter. Some of these include using protective floor mats, lowering the dumper lever, scheduling your intense workouts to the right times, lowering the handle height, and installing an additional sound dampener. 

By changing any of these settings, you can make your rowing machine quieter.

If you are looking for the quietest rowing machine while not breaking the bank, then Sunny Health & Fitness SF-RW5515 is the one to opt for.

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