If you’ve already decided on using a paint sprayer for your interior wall painting project, you’ve made a great choice.
A high-quality paint sprayer can save you a ton of time, get you professional looking results, and be easy to use.
Paint sprayers also are much better at reaching corners or small details with ease and an even layer of paint. Not to mention that with proper care, they save a ton of mess and last longer than brushes and rollers.
In this article, we’re going over everything you need to know to pick the best paint sprayer for your interior wall painting project.
Interior Wall Paint Sprayer Guide
Let’s cover the two main types of paint sprayers and how they work.
Airless Paint Sprayers
Airless paint sprayers work by pushing paint from a container through a flexible hose and out a spray gun. This spray gun has a fluid pump that does not use air.
The pressure and spray nozzle size determine how much paint is sprayed at a time.
Airless spray may sound like a complicated technology, but it is actually used very often.
The most common household example of an airless sprayer is a shower head.
Graco, one of the leading paint sprayer manufacturers, describes the technology like this:
“In airless spray, the fast moving high-pressure liquid stream provides the energy necessary to overcome the fluid’s viscosity (resistance to flow) and surface tension (a force that bonds the surface of a liquid together) to form a fine spray.
In the depiction of spray from a gun, high pressure forces fluid through a small nozzle (spray tip). The fluid emerges as a solid stream (sheet) at a high speed. When the solid stream hits the air, it becomes disrupted. This disruption breaks the fluid into fragments initially, then ultimately very small droplets that form the spray pattern.”
The best advantages of airless sprayers include speed, quality, and versatility.
Airless sprayers boast speeds up to 10 times faster than brush painting while producing an even coat of paint.
They can also be used on a variety of projects, including interior and exterior walls, painting furniture, and more.
HVLP Paint Sprayers
High Volume Low Pressure paint sprayers, on the other hand, use air to push paint from an attached container and skip the hose.
Paint Zoom describes the way HVLP spray guns work as follows:
“The spray gun has two main sources of air, one which helps to form the pattern on the spray painting surface and one that breaks up the fluid stream into the fine spray particles. Both of these air sources are located in air caps at the exit of the spray gun’s nozzle.
The paint is delivered by means of a cup which is attached directly to the spray gun. There are three different kinds of HVLP spray guns, gravity feed, pressure feed, and siphon feed.
The siphon feed spray gun uses pressurized air to create a siphoning action at the nozzle. The siphon feed spray gun has the paint cup located below the nozzle.
Due to the difference in atmospheric pressure, the paint then moves towards the vacuum area and comes out of the cup. The atomized air pressure determines how much fluid is sprayed by the paint sprayer.
If you want fast application then you are looking for a spray gun with a higher atomized air pressure. However, higher atomized air also means more overspray. The siphon feed spray gun is not efficient because it does not give you enough control of the atomized air pressure and therefore you cannot control the amount of paint being sprayed.”
Which is better for interior walls?
HVLP sprayers work for interior wall projects, but they are really best for smaller scale projects like painting furniture or a small accent wall.
For a lot of space to cover on larger projects, airless sprayers are the way to go.
Top Rated Paint Sprayers for Interior Walls
- Price: List price is $408, but you can find deals on sites like Amazon to save at least $100.
- Weight: 13 pounds
- Maximum Pressure: 3000 psi
- Performance Rating: .27 gallons per minute
- Pros: With a maximum hose length of 75 feet, this versatile airless sprayer provides excellent quality for the price. It can handle everything from light stains to heavy latex paints easily. It features stainless steel piston pumps that are long lasting. It is also a lightweight and quick to set up.
- Cons: This unit can vibrate at higher pressure speeds and cause over spray.
- Price: Around $110 on Amazon.
- Weight: 10 pounds
- Pressure: The pressure ranges from 1.50 psi to 2.63 psi.
- Pros: Not only is this paint sprayer very affordable, it is a great choice for beginners because it is easy to use and very lightweight. Minimum overspray is also a great quality of this sprayer. The air hose is 20 feet long, which should be plenty for most interior wall projects. It is also easy to clean.
- Cons: This sprayer isn’t great for painting large surface areas because it has a short power cord and isn’t super fast compared to airless models. It can also be a little on the noisy side.
- Price: Amazon currently offers this product at an affordable $220, approximately.
- Weight: 23 pounds
- Maximum Pressure: 2800 psi
- Performance: up to 0.24 gallons per minute.
- Pros: Excellent for DIY use, this paint sprayer can get the job done fast and well. The large paint capacity is ideal for covering large surface areas and the price is relatively affordable. The metal spray gun features a fine mesh filter to catch any thick paint clogs. It is easy to clean and has an easy to adjust control knob for adjusting spray pressure.
- Cons: This product is heavy and not super versatile for use on smaller projects.
- Price: At just under $300 on Amazon, this moderately priced paint sprayer is great for the serious DIY-er.
- Weight: 25 pounds
- Maximum Pressure: 2500 psi
- Performance: 0.25 gallons per minute
- Pros: The 25-foot hose is great for interior work. This product is easy to use and clean. The adjustable pressure settings and flexible suction tube make this product compatible with a variety of paints and stains. It is great for large surfaces because the tube can be used with up to 5-gallon paint containers without trouble.
- Cons: This paint sprayer is heavy and not great on smaller areas. The gun can also drip.
Paint Sprayer Tips and Tricks
Check out our infographic on how to use a paint sprayer.
As with any painting project, make sure to prep the area you are painting:
- remove all artwork, furniture, etc from the area you are painting;
- remove light switch and outlet covers to ensure you won’t accidentally paint them;
- cover the floor and any trims you don’t want to be painted.
Even the best paint sprayers may have some over spray mist, so it is best to protect surfaces you aren’t painting thoroughly.
Clean the walls. Moisture or dust can seriously mess up your paint job, so make sure you clean the walls first. Most of the time a simple damp rag will do the job, but there are also cleaning products on the market for serious messes. Let the walls dry completely before applying paint.
Also, fix any previously existing paint drips by sanding them down and repair any unwanted holes in the wall before painting.
Make sure you have all of the necessary safety equipment, such as goggles, gloves, respiration mask, and safety ladders. Have a brush or roller handy to quickly fix any drips or imperfections.
Follow the manufacturer instructions for your sprayer. Some models require the paint to be thinned before use. Thick paint can clog up your paint sprayer and make the job much more frustrating and time-consuming.
Always practice with your paint sprayer before committing it to your interior walls. Old cardboard boxes are a great place to test out your paint sprayer and make sure you have the hang of it.
Clean your paint sprayer (no more than two hours after use) thoroughly every time you paint with it to maximize its lifespan. Soap and water will work for most types of paint, but oil-based paints will require the use of mineral spirits to clean properly.
Investing in a great paint sprayer is a must for any Do It Yourself fanatic. Consider your budget and storage space when shopping for your paint sprayer. Care for your tool properly to ensure that it will last for a long time.
Check out all of our paint sprayer reviews, recommendations, articles, and tips and tricks on the Tool Nerds Blog.
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That’s it! Happy painting!