Over the years indoor trainers have become more and more silent. However, they can still produce some noise while you train. In this article we’ll give you some advice on how to make your indoor training quieter and thus more pleasant!
When you take a closer look at the noise during indoor training, there are actually two causes: acoustic noise and vibrational noise. Acoustic noise is the the sound the trainer produces in the air around it. The louder or higher this sound, the further it will be transported. Vibrational noise, on the other hand, is caused by the motion the trainer transmits into the floor. The more flexible the floor, the more the vibrations will be magnified and the louder the noise will be. We have some solutions for both causes, so let’s split them up.
Reduce acoustic noise
The sound the trainer produces depends on the type of trainer you use. A direct drive trainer is for instance more silent than a wheel-on trainer. This is predominantly because the bike is mounted directly on the trainer without the use of a rear wheel. Also, there is no transmission between the wheel and roller. In addition, the less transmissions your trainer needs, the less noise it will make. For both types of trainers there are solutions to reduce the acoustic noise.
Much of the noise wheel-on trainers create is generated by the tyres. The more tread a tyre has, the more noise it will make at high speed. Therefore, it’s better to use a smooth slick tyre. The best option is to use a special training tyre specifically made for wheel-on trainers. These slick tyres are made from a different rubber compound and will not only minimize contact noise but will also reduce wear. In addition, it prevents slippage because of the extra grip. Furthermore, the right tyre pressure is important to reduce noise. When the tyre is inflated to a proper pressure (we advise 8 bar), it will hardly deform against the resistance bar. This not only makes it quieter but also reduces the vibrations that a low-pressure tyre can produce.
The type of wheel-on trainer also determines the amount of noise. For instance, the Bushido and Genius are a lot more silent than the Vortex and Flow trainer. This is because the latter two not only generate less resistance but also have a smaller resistance bar. Therefore, these trainers have to make more rotations per minute to create the same output and thus produce more sound.
Direct drive trainers are more silent than wheel-on trainers because they use less transmissions. Actually, the only sound you should hear is the chain going around the cassette. If your trainer is producing more noise than that, then there are a few possible causes you can check. First of all, make sure that your cassette is mounted correctly. When it’s mounted too loose, the cassette can make a crackling sound. It is best to tighten it up to 40NM. Furthermore, check that, just like on your road bike, your gears are set up properly and are running smoothly. And of course, make sure that your chain and cassette are clean. To get the best result, we advise our customers to use a new chain and a new cassette.
Reduce vibrational noise
During an indoor training your trainer will always produce vibrations. When your trainer is placed on a solid floor, like concrete, these vibrations will be almost absorbed entirely. But when your trainer is placed on a wooden floor, these vibrations can be magnified by the floor itself. You won’t make friends with your housemates or neighbours downstairs. The easiest way to reduce these vibrations is by using a special training mat. These are made of a special foam and will absorb most vibrations.
Enjoy your silent workout!