Looking to shift your painting job into high gear? Then an airless paint sprayer is just the tool you need.
This powerful tool is a great alternative to rolling and brushing on paint. An airless paint sprayer is said to complete the job ten times faster!
These sprayers are great for outside jobs and neat finishes. If you’re a DIYer your paint job is about to get a lot easier. And professional painters will work faster, make more money and have happier customers.
Ready to buy your first airless paint sprayer? You can guarantee success by knowing the best one to buy. Here’s everything you need to know.
Comparing Paint Sprayers
Airless paint sprayers aren’t the only sprayers on the market. If you’re looking to buy a paint sprayer you’ll have three options. Compressed, high volume low pressure (HVLP) or an airless sprayer.
Your best choice depends on the job and kind of paint you plan to use.
Here’s a quick comparison:
- Uses compressed air for paint application.
- Great for furniture.
- Are messy and overspray.
- Use more paint that HLVP and airless sprayers.
- Paint is released slower.
- Wastes little paint.
- More expensive than other sprayers.
- Great for interior jobs like doors and cabinets.
- Generally not good for thicker paint jobs like lacquers.
- Shoot out paint at a high pressure.
- Gives a very even coat application.
- Great for outdoor exterior projects like fences and decks.
- Can handle thicker paints and cover large areas.
- Noisy compared to HLVP sprayers, so better for outdoor jobs.
- Spray pattern is harder to control.
How An Airless Paint Sprayer Works
Airless sprayers operate on high pressure from their hydraulic pumps. The paint is pressurized through a small vent. The sprayer pumps out the paint and sprays droplets evenly across the object.
Airless sprayers can be electric or gas powered.
The high pressure inside of them enables them to quickly complete jobs. They can apply two gallons of paint per minute to a surface. And they don’t require users to thin the paint.
If you’re intimidated about handling such a high powered device, don’t worry. A little practice goes a long way with an airless paint sprayer. And they’re generally portable which makes them easy to carry around.
Spray side to side to develop a nice painting motion. You can practice with water first instead of paint. This will give you a good feel for how the sprayer works.
And remember, your sprayer won’t completely cover a surface on the first spray. So don’t worry if you have to do a few rotations.
Choosing The Right Sprayer
Just arrived in the hardware store and ready to make a purchase? You’ll need the right combo of sprayer specifications for a successful project. Consider the following as you decide on the perfect paint sprayer.
Looking for a speedy paint job? Then choose an airless sprayer with a larger horsepower. A greater horsepower means more paint will spray out faster. But don’t buy a sprayer that’s too powerful for you to physically handle.
Before you buy think about what kind of coatings you’re thinking of using. If you’re looking at thicker coatings you’ll need a sprayer with a bigger tip. A tip that’s too small can leave your paint gun clogged up.
The size of your project will effect how powerful a sprayer you’ll need. Bigger jobs will need more pressure and horsepower. While smaller jobs might only require a handheld unit.
Are you working on a larger job like painting a fence? Then you’ll need a longer hose on your airless paint sprayer. Long distance jobs will probably need a hose or extension cord at least 25 feet long.
How much paint do you think you’re going to need for your project? The size of your project will determine what size sprayer you’ll need. Try to estimate how much before buying a sprayer. Thicker coatings like lacquers will also have varying requirements.
Use The Right Tips
It’s important to use the right tips with your airless paint sprayer. Tips control how wide the paint pattern is. They also control how fast the paint is released.
For a light to medium coated paint job, you can use smaller tips. If you’re painting a primer or block filler go with a larger tip.
Tip extensions are also useful for painting spots that are hard to reach. They’re great for painting high ceilings and foyers.
Feeling unsure about tips to buy? Check the coatings Product Data Sheet. Or give your paint supplier a call for advice.
Number Of Guns
For smaller and medium jobs at home one paint gun will get your job done. But for larger commercial and industrial projects you’ll need a crew. So buy several guns to accommodate everyone.
Available Power Sources
We mentioned above that you can buy gas, electric or pneumatic airless sprayers. Some can even convert from electric to gas.
So think about the kinds of power sources available at your site. This will make powering your project go a lot smoother.
If you’re looking for a smooth finished look on your job buy a filter. They remove paint debris.
They also make sure your tips don’t clog up. Clogged tips cause splattering paint which ruins a neat finish.
Conditioners & Protectants
You can extend the life of your paint sprayer by applying formulas. Conditioners and protectants protect your sprayer from freezing, rust, and other hazards. You can find them in your local hardware store.
A Few More Pointers…
- You can buy your sprayer with accompanying wheels or a backpack. This is useful for a project that requires a lot of sprayer carrying.
- If you want an easy cleanup job, buy a unit that disassembles easily. Units with smooth interiors are also easy to clean.
- You can also buy an adjustable pressure control with your sprayer. This control adjusts settings that can extend the life of your spray tips.
- Airless sprayers are known for being loud and noisy. So give yours a test run in the store before making your purchase.
- Find out if your sprayer has replacement parts available. If something goes wrong you want to be able to fix it.
- While sprayer shopping, ask the sales person for product guides. Find out if there are any hard copy manuals or customer support lines. Also, ask about any online or digital resources available.
Paint sprayers generally run from $225 to $400. But if you’re doing a one day job, consider renting. You can rent a high production sprayer for $70-$100 a day. And you won’t have to worry about where to store it.
Anyone working with a paint sprayer should be careful. But pay careful attention when using a high-pressured airless sprayer. Let’s go over a few painting safety tips:
- If your sprayer tip touches your skin paint toxins can enter your body. If you have an accident like this, seek medical attention immediately. Let your doctor know that you have an injection wound.Don’t be fooled into thinking this is a minor injury. Paint toxins entering your bloodstream are extremely dangerous.
- Wear a mask and eye protection while using your sprayer. And never spray at anyone or at a window. Paint fumes are dangerous so only use paint sprayers in well ventilated areas.
- Be sure to read your sprayers setup and safety instructions thoroughly.
- Cover everything in the area of your project including plants and windows. Don’t paint on windy days.
When You Shouldn’t Use An Airless Paint Sprayer
While sprayers are super useful tools they’re not perfect for every project.
- Paint sprayers can be messy. And they’re best used when you have a lot of space. Is your project a smaller job? Then you might bet better off using a roller or brush.
- Are you worried about not having enough paint? You’re better off using a roller or brush. Sprayers are great but require a lot of paint.
- Paint sprayers projects require a lot of prep work. Items in work space will need to be properly covered. So if you don’t feel like prepping, spraying isn’t the best choice.
- Are you someone who hates cleaning? Well, paint sprayers tend to overspray and get paint on things. You’ll also have to disassemble and clean the sprayer itself.
- Stick with brushes and rollers for a quicker cleanup process.Our verdict on airless paint sprayers is positive. They reduce the time it takes for manual paint jobs. For professional painters, this can lead to higher revenue and better time management.
The power of airless sprayers also makes at home jobs complete a lot easier. Whatever your project is, sprayers ensure that your paint project is done smarter.
Using the info above, you’ll select the best sprayer for your project. Remember to run any questions by an equipment supplier.
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