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Whether you are looking to repaint your interior or exterior walls, or simply looking to add a splash of color to your latest DIY creation, you are going to want to ensure a beautiful, smooth finish. You will also want to get the project done in the most efficient and professional way possible. This means that spending hours painting with a simple paintbrush and roller set up will not suffice. It is time to bring in the big guns and turn your painting dreams into a reality. It is time to invest in the best airless paint sprayer, and we have just the thing to help you get started on your airless sprayer journey.
Table of Contents
- 1 Reasons to Use an Airless Sprayer
- 2 Paint Roller or Airless Sprayer
- 3 Types of Paint Sprayers
- 4 Airless Paint Sprayer Checklist
- 5 Pressure Adjustment
- 6 Choosing the Best Airless Paint Sprayer
- 7 How to Use an Airless Spray Gun
- 7.1 Top Tips for Painting Your Home
- 7.1.1 Be Careful with Letting Paint Dry
- 7.1.2 Always Use a Primer
- 7.1.3 Watch Out for Overlapping
- 7.1.4 Mix the Paint Before Using
- 7.1.5 Prioritize Cleaning
- 7.1.6 Determine The Existing Paint
- 7.1.7 Old Tape Not Letting Go?
- 7.1.8 Dress for the Occasion
- 7.1.9 Preparation is Key
- 7.1.10 Use a Paint Pen for a Quick Repair
- 7.1.11 Always Read the Manual
- 7.1.12 Practice Makes Perfect
- 7.1.13 Fresh Air is Necessary
- 7.1.14 Start at the Top for Best Results
- 7.2 Painting with an Airless Sprayer
- 7.1 Top Tips for Painting Your Home
- 8 Frequently Asked Questions
Reasons to Use an Airless Sprayer
An airless paint gun is a simple, long-term investment in your painting future. Instead of spending money on rollers and paintbrushes that are not as efficient, you can use an airless paint gun to get the job done. One of the greatest benefits that come with using an airless sprayer is the fact that it provides smooth, even coverage and can get into all of the nooks and crannies of the painting space.
As a result, the job is completed in record time with minimal waste, spillage, and missed spots. The mechanical pump gives the device the pressure needed to disperse the paint and spray it onto the surface in question. Airless paint sprayers have a small electric pump to power this, which makes it easier to use and move around as compared to spray guns requiring an air compressor. When it comes to using an airless spray gun, it can be used both indoors and outdoors, all you need to do is select the paint applied to the surface and let your handy paint sprayer do the rest. It really is a simple and easy process.
So, how does one go about selecting the best airless paint sprayer? We will be sharing some helpful tips to make sure that you invest in the best airless paint sprayer.
Paint Roller or Airless Sprayer
Undoubtedly, the first thing you will be forced to consider is the obvious price difference. Naturally, a basic paint roller is a lot more cost-effective in the short term but will require regular replacing which then pushes up the costs. Airless sprayers on the other hand will require an upfront investment, but once you have got it, you will be good for a few years. And with so many cheap airless paint sprayers available, there is no reason not to look into this device.
An airless paint gun is by far a lot easier to use and ensures more consistent, precise painting results. It is worth mentioning that it will take some practice to become a pro when using an airless spray gun, but this will more than pay off in the long term. Airless sprayers are also more versatile when it comes to painting and can be used with most paints on most surfaces, whereas paint rollers and brushes may be limited to a certain application. An airless paint sprayer is a simple, convenient device that works hard so that you do not have to.
The one constant between the two paint application methods is preparation. You need to properly prepare your surface before applying to make sure you get the achieved result. You will also need to figure out the best technique that will be easy for you to use while completing the project efficiently.
Airless Paint Sprayer
Types of Paint Sprayers
While this article is focused on airless paint sprayers, it is worth mentioning that they are not the only paint sprayer options available. The type of paint sprayer you choose to use will depend on your budget, intended use, and experience level. The three different paint spray gun options include airless paint guns, HVLP sprayers, and handheld sprayers.
HVLP sprayers are the more cost-effective option and are a simple plug-and-play solution, and while it does pack a punch, it does have a short lifespan. Handheld sprayers, as the name implies, are more user-friendly, easier to use, and take up less space. They have a container to hold the paint and give you the freedom to move in all directions and angles. Of course, the airless sprayer is the most efficient, easy-to-use setup that requires a less bulky setup.
For this paint sprayer option, you do not need an air compressor, which saves you a lot of money when it comes to the initial setup. You can also move around a lot more freely and is easy to store after use.
Airless Paint Sprayer Checklist
To keep it simple and straight to the point, here are the things that you should be looking out for when buying an airless spray gun. Some of them may seem straightforward while others may come as a surprise, either way, we want to make sure you know what to look for to ensure that you invest in the product that best meets your needs.
When it comes to investing in your DIY craft, you want to know that the product will last long enough to make a difference. Most corded airless spray guns will be able to handle up to 500 gallons a year while cordless sprayers will only be able to handle 50 gallons.
Whether you choose to go cordless or not, make sure that you are buying a device that can handle your workload.
Consider Going Cordless
There are two types of airless spray guns, namely cordless and corded. As can be expected, the cordless variety is easy to use and is not limited to the area that the power cable can reach. They are also easier to maneuver. The downside is that they are still fairly new and can be quite pricey. The options on the market are limited and lack the variety that corded sprayers offer.
Corded versions have the experience and variety you need when it comes to DIY technology and equipment. They are also able to suck paint from the paint can, which means that you are not limited to the size of your paint canister. The downside of this option is that it is limited to the cord length and can be difficult to maneuver.
Being able to adjust the spray pressure is an important part of any airless spray gun. Different jobs require different levels of coverage. Low pressure is ideal for fine detail jobs while high-pressure sprays are more suited for bigger projects. Do not forget that adjusting the pressure will need a change of the filter and tip as well to ensure the best possible flow.
Small tips work best for lacquers and stains while medium tips work best for latex and oil-based paints.
Large tips should be used for thicker liquids. When it comes to the filter, you need to ensure that it allows adequate flow without clogging. Fine filters will need to be cleaned regularly, so make sure that you use the option that best suits your needs to prevent clogging. The size of your tip will play a part in determining the relevant size of the filter.
Length of the Hose
To help you have more freedom when painting, we recommend a longer hose. The size of the hose is not standard, so you can choose the length that will accommodate your space and project needs. If you are looking at a cordless sprayer, this will not be an issue. Remember, too little room for movement can be just as problematic as too much room for movement. So, choose wisely to prevent painting disasters.
Choosing the Best Airless Paint Sprayer
Once you have decided to take the plunge and buy your first airless paint sprayer, you will be faced with a whole lot of options. Do you look at the cheap airless paint sprayers or do you go big and look at the best professional airless paint sprayer? We recommend you research the available options before heading to your local hardware store, as salespeople may not always have your best interest at heart. So, to help you navigate this overwhelming process, we have a few airless paint sprayers that are worth looking into, based on different search criteria.
Best Powerful Air Sprayer Gun: WAGNER Power Painter
Power is a factor to consider when looking to invest time and money into an airless paint sprayer, and Wagnercertainly delivers. The brand is synonymous with quality airless spray guns and with good reason. Not only does this device deliver on power, but it also creates a beautiful, long-lasting finish. It can be applied on so many unique surfaces and can be used with most paints. This is also one of the best cheap airless paint sprayers that offer great value for money.
Best Cheap Airless Paint Sprayers GRACO TrueCoat
Affordability plays a big part in determining which product you will end up buying. Graco is a high-quality brand that offers a wide range of products to meet the needs of all budgets and projects. The TrueCoat 360 offers great value for money and is incredibly user-friendly.
Best Professional Airless Paint Sprayer for DIY: GRACO Pro210ES
If you have the budget available and have some experience in painting with an airless spray gun, we recommend this bad boy from Graco. This airless paint sprayer is easily one of our favorites and is close to being the best professional airless paint sprayer available. It offers amazing performance, a professional-quality finish, and is easy to use.
Most Consistent Airless Sprayer: TITAN TOOL ControlMax
Air sprayers are known for their consistent spray, even coating, and reduced wastage, however, some are more efficient at this. Titan Tool has the best solution to this, ensuring more control, less overspray, and an overall better finish. This is recommended for more advanced DIYers that have used an airless paint gun before.
How to Use an Airless Spray Gun
The principles of painting any surface are straightforward and easy to understand, regardless of whether you are using an airless spray, paintbrush, or roller. While we could go on and on about how to use an airless sprayer, we will keep it straightforward and to the point so that you can get started as soon as possible. It should come as no surprise that the first thing on your list should be buying an airless spray gun. Regardless of whether you are using cheap airless paint sprayers or the best professional airless paint sprayer available, the basic painting method will remain the same.
After you have your airless spray gun, you need to select your paint. Now, depending on the paint gun you have, you may need to thin out the paint, so make sure that you have the correct medium on hand to do so. Another aspect to consider is the potential overspray, so make sure that the area has been properly prepared and that all exposed items and spaces are properly covered to prevent the paint from covering it and potentially ruining it. Masking tape, plastic sheeting, and newspaper should be on your shopping list. You need to remember that paint particles will float in the air, making it easy to mess on your clothes and breathe them in. The proper protective gear is important, so invest in overalls, goggles, and a good mask.
Once both you and the area have been properly protected, you can reach for the airless paint gun that you have been dying to use.
Top Tips for Painting Your Home
We could all use some helpful tips when it comes to DIY jobs, especially those involving painting. So, whether you are a beginner or pro, we have got some helpful tips to make your next painting job easy and hassle-free.
Be Careful with Letting Paint Dry
Of course, the paint on your surface should dry. What should not be left to dry out is the paint in your paint can. This can easily happen when you accidentally leave the lid off or do not secure it properly. It also becomes an issue with paint cans that have more than half of the liquid left inside of them. Ideally, the tin needs to be full to prevent unnecessary drying, and an easy way to do this is to pop some golf balls in there.
Storing the paint can upside down is another great way to prevent it from drying out, just make sure that the lid has been properly secured.
Always Use a Primer
We have made mention of the fact that the surface needs to be properly prepared, and a primer is the best way to do so. It acts as a “glue” that keeps the paint attached to the surface and can also hide any marks or imperfections. Water-based primers work best for drywall and other similar surfaces, while oil-based primers are ideal for paneling or damaged surfaces.
Watch Out for Overlapping
As you apply layer after layer, you run the risk of having these layers overlap. In some cases, this will prevent gaps, however, in most cases, it will result in an unsightly line. To prevent this, DO NOT give the different layers time to dry.
You need to work quickly and apply each stroke of paint to the wet layer.
Mix the Paint Before Using
When paint cans are left standing, particles may settle, so before use, we recommended mixing it properly before application. We recommend using a paint mixer with holes in it to aerate the paint and provide a thorough mixing.
Of course, cleaning up your messes is a no-brainer. However, when it comes to your painting gear, the frequency of cleaning will depend on how long the paint job will take. It is not always worth the time and effort to clean your gear every day if the project will take a while to complete, however, if it takes less than a day then it goes without saying that you should give your gear a good clean.
Depending on the paint that you are using, you may be able to slow down the drying process by popping everything into a plastic bag and storing it in your fridge overnight. Take it out first thing in the morning to thaw out before you start painting.
Determine The Existing Paint
Before you can start painting, you need to know what you are going to be working with. You need to know what you are about to paint and what existing paint is on the surface. Sometimes, you already know because you had previously applied it, or it is pretty obvious. In other instances, you may need to figure it out for yourself, which can easily be done with cotton wool and rubbing alcohol. All you need to do is wet the cotton wool and wipe it across the surface. If color rubs off, it is latex paint. If not, it is more than likely oil-based.
Old Tape Not Letting Go?
It is enough to drive you crazy when your tape decides to stick to itself as you are about to start a new project. Luckily, we have a quick hack to get you going – simply pop your roll of painter’s tape into the microwave for a few seconds and it will loosen up.
Stuck tape is not the end of the world when you know the tricks to deal with it.
Dress for the Occasion
Another topic that we have already touched on is protective gear. Paint miss spreads and floats in the air, the last thing you should be doing is inhaling it or messing all over your best clothes. Overalls, goggles, and a mask will help you stay happy and healthy.
Preparation is Key
We have already mentioned it, but it is so important that we are more than happy to mention it as many times as necessary to ensure that the message gets across. To ensure that the paint sticks to the surface and covers it properly, you need to prepare your surface. This includes the surrounding areas as well as the project at hand.
Sand down your project and apply a sealant and ensure that your surrounding surfaces are properly covered and protected.
Use a Paint Pen for a Quick Repair
When it comes to touch-ups, grabbing a can of paint can be overkill. So, to save costs and preserve the integrity of your creations, a paint pen is ideal. You can easily store some of the paint in the pen for up to a year. You can also buy paint pens that are the same color from your nearest hardware store.
Always Read the Manual
Do not assume that all sprayers are the same or that you can simply just add paint and go. Airless spray guns need to be assembled correctly to ensure the longevity of not only the device but the paint job as well.
There is so much that you need to know about your airless sprayer before you can start painting.
Practice Makes Perfect
Before starting on your project, spend some time spraying offcuts or boxes with your new DIY toy. This will give you the opportunity to experiment with different techniques while getting to know your new airless paint sprayer.
Fresh Air is Necessary
Depending on where you are working, you need to make sure that you have proper ventilation and that the air can flow through freely. Painting outdoor is always advisable, however, when this is not possible, make sure that your work area is open and spacious.
You want enough free-flowing air to get rid of the paint fumes.
Start at the Top for Best Results
Use a sweeping motion to work your way down. This principle applies to all surfaces – from walls to bookshelves and everything in between. Make sure that the lines are smoothed over and not building up as they can become unsightly. If any runs appear, smooth them over and consider changing the setting of your airless paint sprayer. To ensure proper coverage, apply more than one paint layer.
Painting with an Airless Sprayer
What would a how-to guide be without the actual how-to? So, the moment of truth is here. This is what you have been reading this article for. We are now ready to dive right into the world of painting and to keep you on the right track, we have a few easy steps.
For the best results, simply stick to this easy formula!
Clean and prepare the surface. This will assist you in determining if the surface is worth painting as well as the amount of prep work that will go into it. In most cases, you will want to remove any existing paint and smooth out the surface. In the event of repair work, this will also need to be factored in.
If your project needs to be disassembled or has specific pieces, you will want to label them to make sure that you put it all together the way it should be.
It will also help you monitor all of the elements.
Determine where you will be painting your project and cover the area accordingly. Mask off doors, doorways, windows, and all other fixtures. Move any furniture away from the space and cover remaining surfaces with a tarp, plastic sheeting, or newspaper.
Once your surface has been properly prepared and your work area properly secured and protected, you can finally prepare your airless paint sprayer to do its thing. Before starting on your project surface, we recommend practicing a few strokes on an off-cut.
This will ensure that the settings are correct and that you get a hang of the technique.
Once you have finished painting, leave the surfaces to dry. Once dried, give it a quick look to see if it needs a touch-up or additional coat. It is okay to apply more than one coat, just ensure that it has a tie to dry properly between applications. When you are happy with your work and the paint coverage, you can reassemble your project.
An airless sprayer is a fantastic way to get painting jobs done as it offers impressive performance and amazing, professional-quality results. The airless sprayer you choose will depend on your project needs, but regardless of the task at hand, an airless spray gun is a great addition to any DIY tool kit.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can an Airless Sprayer Be Used to Paint Indoors?
Yes, most people tend to prefer spraying indoors as the environment is easier to manage and control. Airless paint sprayers are easy to use and have been designed to be used anywhere you see fit. The paint you choose will need to be suitable for use on your chosen surface and the space needs to be covered and protected.
Paint Sprayer or Airless Paint Sprayer?
First things first, what is the size of the area painted? This will determine the extent of your painting arsenal. For bigger areas, airless paint sprayers are ideal while smaller areas may be more suited for rollers and paintbrushes. Of course, efficiency plays a role in it all, and this is something that the airless paint sprayer excels at.
Is It Worth the Investment?
We believed that an airless spray gun is worth it in both the long and short term. It gives you a professional quality finish, and although the price tag can be intimidating, it is an investment that will pay off in more ways than one – trust us.
When Should I Clean the Filter?
To ensure that your filter lasts, we recommend cleaning it after every use. This will reduce the risk of clogging and get rid of any debris that may have made its way into your airless sprayer. The same train of thought applies to the tip and nozzle. Regular maintenance is important when it comes to using an airless spray gun.