If you bought an air pump from the pet store, most likely it’s a diaphragm air pump, which uses a diaphragm that rapidly vibrates back and forth to suck in air from its surroundings and then push that air into your fish tank. This vibration unfortunately can become quite noisy over time. Try these solutions to make it quieter:
- Place a small towel, block of foam, or other soft material under the air pump to cushion the vibrations.
- Make sure the air pump (and its cushion) is resting on a solid surface that won’t vibrate and amplify the noise.
- If the air pump isn't too heavy, hang it up by the power cable so that the pump isn't touching or vibrating against anything.
- Clean the aquarium device or decor attached to your air pump because it may have gotten clogged from debris or algae growth.
- Consider replacing your air pump with a quieter, smaller one – like the USB nano air pump.
- If the bubbling noise is too loud, try adding an air stone to the aquarium device, if possible. The air stone makes smaller bubbles, which do not make as much noise when they pop at the surface. For example, see our article on how to install an air stone in a sponge filter.
For more information, read the full article on how to use an aquarium air pump.