When you want to reach the highest coating level on large projects without taking too much time and energy, it’s important that you understand how to use an airless paint sprayer.
Although portable than compressor-driven machines and with greater power than turbine units.
These mighty jobs can be problematic especially for first-time users to assemble and operate.
When it comes to painting, there are a few methods one can choose from. I paint with airless paint sprayers often and in this post, I will guide you on how to use airless paint sprayers.
And Rollers are one of the most frequently used painting tools and they’re also often cheap and effective.
Airless paint sprayers, on the other hand, deliver powerful results in no time without compromising quality.
Plus, these machines also come with several accessories one can use for more complex tasks.
- 1 How to use airless paint sprayer
- 2 How to choose Paint for an airless paint sprayer
- 3 Wear protective gear
- 4 Preparation of house
- 5 Now select your paint and sprayer
- 6 Preparation of your own self
- 7 Prepare the surface and the area
- 8 Now coating material prep comes
- 9 Now comes the paint sprayer
- 10 Method to prime airless paint sprayer
- 11 Test the sprayer before use on some surface
- 12 Finally start painting on your project
- 13 Completion of the painting process
- 14 How to clean area after using airless sprayer
- 15 How do you use a airless paint sprayer?
- 16 Do you need to dilute paint for airless sprayer?
- 17 Are airless paint sprayers easy to use?
- 18 What is the number one rule when using airless spray gun?
- 19 FAQ’s of How to use airless paint sprayers
- 20 Conclusion on How to use airless paint sprayers
How to use airless paint sprayer
How to choose Paint for an airless paint sprayer
The process of choosing paint for an airless sprayer is relatively simple, but there are a few things to keep in mind. First, you’ll need to decide what type of paint you need.
There are two main types of paint available for airless sprayers: oil-based and water-based.
Oil-based paint is more durable and resistant to wear and tear, making it a good choice for areas that see a lot of traffic.
Water-based paint is easier to clean up and is less likely to yellow over time, making it a good choice for areas that need to look clean and fresh.
Once you’ve decided on the type of paint you need, you’ll need to select a brand.
There are a variety of brands available, so it’s important to do some research to find one that suits your needs.
Once you’ve selected a brand, you’ll need to choose a color.
Airless sprayers can usually accommodate a wide range of colors, so you should have no trouble finding one that suits your taste.
Once you’ve selected the paint you need, you’ll need to thin it before use. This is important because paint that is too thick will not spray properly and can clog the sprayer.
Paint that is too thin will not provide adequate coverage. The best way to thin paint is to add a small amount of thinner to the paint and mix it well.
Wear protective gear
Before using an airless paint sprayer, it is important to wear a paint suit to protect yourself from the paint. To do this, first put on a pair of gloves to protect your hands.
Next, put on a respirator to protect your lungs from the paint fumes.
Finally, put on a paint suit to protect your clothes from the paint. Once you have all of this protective gear on, you are ready to use the paint sprayer.
Preparation of house
I prepare the surface properly before working on the project so that no fuss creates during the process of painting.
Here are steps from my experience that you must follow to achieve maximum results after painting the surface or object.
Surface prep work is arguably the most important part of a spray-painting job. How you do it will determine the results you end up with.
Doing the prep well means reducing the overspray and that’s good because it lets you handle your task in a more confident way.
Repair any holes that have been chipped or cracked. A Dremel tool works well for this.
After the surface is clean, mix two small drops of putty with one teaspoon of mineral spirits and paint on a piece of disposable plastic, like a ketchup cup lid or sandwich bag.
Let the putty dry for 24 hours (it takes 2-3 days to dry out completely) then sand the rough areas smoothly and remove the putty with a wire brush.
To protect your indoor spaces, cover all of the surrounding areas that you don’t plan on painting.
That means you should use drop cloths and plastic sheets to cover your furniture, rugs, and baseboards.
It’s also good to remember to cover your windows, shutters, and any other areas that you don’t want to get paint on.
It’s always best to avoid getting anything in hard-to-reach areas of your house that might end up staining your newly painted walls!
To make sure things didn’t get switched around by mistake, you should definitely create a masking & taping plan before painting.
This way, you’re completely covered from top to bottom, and none of the parts or surfaces are meant to remain white.
Or any other neutral shade accidentally gets left behind without a proper barrier if you know what I’m saying!
DIYers or hobbyist painters, spray paint is easy to use but can be dangerous for you.
The best way to protect yourself from the hazards of inhaling harmful particles and getting ticked off at your significant other.
For tracking paint all over the house is by use a simple DIY project that you can easily find instructions for on YouTube: a spray shelter booth.
You’ll be glad it requires only a few cheap retail products.
Spray paint is great for producing quick jobs, safe from a range of materials and solvents.
The easiest way to get your project painted is with spray paint because: it’s easy to use;
The amount of time it saves you can be used in other aspects of your work or personal life; and most importantly, it works like magic!
No matter where you are–in your garage or outside–the paint will take on a beautiful finish that rivals any pro job.
Prepare to have people constantly asking you where you got your truck painted, or how you got the markings up on your new office building.
Preparation, preparation, preparation! This is the key to any successful painting project.
If you’re painting outdoors, you should remember to take note of the wind direction because one can’t be too careful when it comes to overspray!
So, make sure your plants and trees are covered with plastic (if they’re nearby!) so that they remain protected during the process while still looking beautiful.
These all steps are from my personal experience which I think you should follow while painting and afterward.
Newbies can create a mess if they don’t follow the instructions written in the manual.
And without any prior knowledge of the sprayer, they get disappointed when they don’t get satisfactory results.
If you’re intending to paint a room in the house you’re already living in and are worried that overspray may damage any of your belongings.
I recommend temporarily moving them all from one part of the house to another.
This way you can protect your possessions from what could be long-term damage due to leftover spray on the surface depending on how much you apply.
Remember, having an open window for optimum ventilation is good for you too since it shouldn’t be so overwhelming working in an environment like that with little airflow.
To minimize results like those, move anything out of the way beforehand and then shut all windows.
And doors where the spray might go so that it doesn’t travel very far into other rooms throughout your home.
Now select your paint and sprayer
When it comes to choosing the right product, there are many factors to consider, but first, you need to make sure you’re using the most appropriate paint for the job!
After considering your painting style and desired finished effect, think about what your basic needs are and how important it is for your product to deliver them.
Both trialing the paint and asking around about brands should give you a pretty good idea of what paints will suit you best.
The most common paints are here below and these will be helpful for newbies:
- Primer is for bare or stripped areas on metal and the wooden surfaces
- Latex paint is best for walls and ceilings
- Stains/sealers, varnishes, etc, and for wood also
- Acrylic paint is for your hobby of crafting
- Enamels are for the areas of cupboards in our kitchen
- Urethanes paint is for painting motor vehicles and bikes etc
Preparation of your own self
Now after preparing the surfacing and selecting the sprayer with paint for the surface which is optimal.
Now you have to get yourself ready so that you don’t get paint on your clothes or on your skin that might irritate you later.
When it comes to power painting and getting the job done professionally, there is no time for stopping and starting.
Sure, you may be surrounded by distractions such as moving family members, or heavy traffic that seems to be blocking your path, but you must keep going at all costs!
Otherwise, you will have to start over again and recreate your work with a fresh coat once everyone has settled down or the traffic is clear.
Take small portions of your project and set realistic time frames to meet set goals in order to finish the project to get satisfactory results.
It’s time to put on your aprons, ladies, and gentlemen. I know you’re about to paint this room red with work.
But you’ll also be spraying down the floor and wall surfaces so you won’t end up staining your clothes during these necessary preparations.
Prepare the surface and the area
Indoor painting is a little more involved than its outdoor counterpart due to the presence of your home’s decor.
While you may want to honor and enjoy every piece in your area, keep in mind that some things will be destroyed as you paint.
If painting near furnishing or appliances, move them out of the way or cover them with plastic sheets and drop cloths.
In addition, whether you’re painting indoors or outdoors, be sure to cover areas near your spray location with some newspaper.
And masking tape in order to avoid any splashes or unfortunate accidents.
One way to get around having any surface imperfections come out while you’re working on your project is by cleaning things ahead of time so there’s nothing left confronting you after the fact.
This may include removing peeling paint flecks from somewhere or minor chips from a countertop before you fix them with a fresh coat of paint or stain.
Also, keep in mind that new layers don’t just hide surface issues, but actually make them more apparent so be sure that the area you’re working with is up to scratch beforehand.
Every paint job has three important elements: the primer, the paint, and the clear coat.
The most basic concept to understand about primers is that it’s for imperfections in the material being painted to help create a smooth finish.
There are many different kinds of primers, each having its own unique purpose so you may find yourself working with them depending on what kind of project you’re completing.
If your project demands a super-fine finish for example on cabinets apply a thinned coat of primer.
As mentioned earlier, this will emphasize any imperfections in your material indicating issues that need the most attention.
Now coating material prep comes
Ensure you have sufficient paint to complete the job you don’t want to run out of your chosen medium mid-project.
It’s crucial that you choose the right paint for each job – of course if you’re planning on using viscous paints like epoxies.
Then thickening them slightly is preferable because the viscosity will be too high for your chosen sprayer.
One should use a viscosity cup, paint stirrers, plastic mixing cups, and their instruction manual to make sure it is blended correctly.
You may think you’re getting a sweet deal when you see a big bag of paint for sale for a low price.
This would be great if it were the same product, but many times buyers are trying to get the most bang for their buck.
By buying cheap paint that is not well made or might even have toxic ingredients in it.
Now comes the paint sprayer
You’ll be able to find an airless sprayer for just about any application, whether you need granules applied for mulch or paint coating.
But knowing some initial tips will help ensure a smooth process.
Choose the appropriate tip/nozzle based on what you’re applying.
Some sprayers include a selection of nozzles out of the box, while others require an additional purchase like this one from Graco.
If you’re unsure which tip to use, take a peek at my airless spray tips guide for various suggestions.
If you’re using a handheld sprayer to paint, you’ll need to attach the recently filled paint container to the gun.
Make sure that the container is sealed and not cross-threaded together with the gun, that there is no mess in the washer and that it is in good condition.
Next comes setting up your siphon hose.
Giving your hose filter a once-over and discarding any notable sludge or other particles helps ensure smooth connecting with the bottom of your bucket or original paint can.
Method to prime airless paint sprayer
It can be hard to get your sprayer primed with liquid when there’s a lot of pressure. In some cases, you might need to spray a little so that the liquid goes through the system.
Some models have an easy prime button that you press and then begin spraying the rest – other models will require the use of the priming tool itself, known as a funnel.
Always check for model-specific instructions for more information on how best to use your product.
Ensure that everything in the sprayer is in right place and the pieces of the main unit and hose etc are properly connected to each other
Now switch the spray switch to the primer setting to use it
The pump also needs to be switched into the “on” position and listen carefully for a steady hum
Connect the tube to the funnel at the bottom of the container (connecting a piece of tubing to that usually works well) and fill it up with paint.
You can do this by moving the tube up and down or shaking the container back and forth. Place the tube from your funnel into your container, locking it in with a clip where necessary.
To change to a spray nozzle, point the can into an empty bucket with the trigger depressed and press your button (or dial) over from “stream” to “spray”.
When paint leaves the gun nozzle, the machine is primed and ready for action.
Test the sprayer before use on some surface
Pick up a piece of cardboard and try it out on that piece so that if you notice any issue in the quality or the quantity of the paint coming out from the nozzle. Then you can fix the issue.
For testing, you have to place the cardboard on the floor or against a wall to test it.
I would suggest you not hold that piece of cardboard because 3300 PSI pressure can cut off your fingers very quickly. So be careful with that thing in your hand while testing it out.
Here are some things you have to notice while testing and after testing the sprayer. These are some tips from my experience all along the way when I was an amateur.
- Make sure that paint flows in a smooth way if the paint splutters then crank up the pressure from the setting. It will fix the splutter issue which is caused by low-pressure flow.
- Notice if you see any overspray or pooling of the paint then its an issue and you cannot fix that if you are a newbie
- Also make sure that the sprayer works on all three angles if it has that feature: Horizontal, vertical, or circular
- Adjust the nozzle if you have to spray in wide medium
- There should not be any “tails”. If you notice any then increase the output pressure and then check it again.
Finally start painting on your project
Now finally after fulfilling all the steps above mentioned in my post. You are good to go to paint your desired object or surface with the airless paint sprayer.
After earlier steps have been completed, then it’s time to start spraying!
Using the spray gun that was recommended to you, begin at around eight to twelve inches away from what you intend to paint and depress the trigger to fill the gun with paint.
Use a firm grip on your material as this will get tedious after a while. It’s better for beginners to experiment with the amount of pressure needed.
If there is too much, try applying less pressure. Try both lighter and heavier strokes until you find a comfortable middle ground.
Whenever possible, keep the gun upright (as opposed to flat when spraying) because this will cause your paint job to look more professional since less material will be wasted from overspray.
Spray painting your project can feel a lot like coloring in the lines of a coloring book.
The trick is to make sure you keep moving your spray gun in broader or thinner directions depending on what size you are painting and how many coats you are aiming for.
You also must keep checking for streaks, specs, or paint pools. If this happens and it’s not too late, move closer or farther away from the area.
Also, try to reduce how much paint is coming out of the spray gun at once! Remember that two thin sprays will give you more color than one overly creamy coat.
So, after completing the coatings of paint on the surface or object. After drying check that all the surface has even coating on them.
If you find any uneven coating or material requiring another coat then do another coat and check it after trying to make it even with another surface of the object.
Completion of the painting process
Once the paint has dried, remove all of the masking tape, newspapers, and poly sheet molds.
Make sure that you reattach all earlier removed fixtures and fittings as they were previously positioned in your home.
Cleaning a paint sprayer is pretty straightforward and simple, so long as safety guidelines are followed.
You need to check what’s recommended by the manufacturer.
But general practices include giving it a good flush and then taking some time to clean the tank and tubes out with water solution.
If you know someone who is going to be using an airless paint sprayer, make sure they store their unused paint in a nice and tidy manner.
How to clean area after using airless sprayer
After you have finished using your airless paint sprayer, it is important to clean the area properly to avoid any paint build-up. Here is a simple process to follow:
- Remove any remaining paint from the sprayer. This can be done by running water through the machine.
- Next, clean the area around the machine. This includes wiping down any surfaces that may have paint on them.
- Finally, rinse the machine with water to remove any paint residue.
By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your airless paint sprayer is properly cleaned and ready for next time.
How do you use a airless paint sprayer?
- Prepare the surface to be painted by cleaning it thoroughly and making any necessary repairs.
- Fill the paint sprayer with the paint of your choice.
- Adjust the nozzle to the appropriate setting for the type of paint and the surface you are painting.
- Start with the sprayer on a low-pressure setting and test the spray pattern on a piece of cardboard or scrap wood.
- Once you have the spray pattern and pressure adjusted, begin painting the surface, starting at the top and working your way down.
- Move the sprayer in a side-to-side motion, overlapping each pass slightly to ensure even coverage.
- Allow the paint to dry completely before applying additional coats if necessary.
- Clean the sprayer thoroughly with water or the manufacturer’s recommended cleaner after use.
Do you need to dilute paint for airless sprayer?
It depends on the type of paint and the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Some paints are designed to be used with an airless sprayer without dilution, while others may need to be thinned to achieve the desired spray pattern and to prevent clogging in the sprayer.
It’s important to read the instructions on the paint can and consult the manufacturer’s guidelines for the specific paint and sprayer you are using.
Additionally, you can also test the paint by spraying a small amount on a surface before starting the main project to make sure the paint is atomizing properly.
Are airless paint sprayers easy to use?
Airless paint sprayers can be relatively easy to use, but they do require some practice and experience to master.
Some people may find them more difficult to use than traditional paint brushes or rollers, as they can be heavy and require a steady hand to achieve even coverage.
However, once you get used to using an airless paint sprayer, they can be very efficient and effective tools for painting large surfaces quickly and evenly.
It’s always recommended to read the manufacturer’s instructions and guidelines carefully before using the paint sprayer and to practice on a smaller surface before starting the main project.
Additionally, you can also seek for training or video tutorials to learn the proper technique for using an airless paint sprayer before attempting to use it on a large project.
What is the number one rule when using airless spray gun?
The number one rule when using an airless spray gun is to maintain a consistent distance from the surface being painted.
Keeping a consistent distance from the surface ensures that the paint is applied evenly and at the correct pressure.
This will prevent overspray, drips, and splatters, and will help achieve a smooth and professional finish.
It is also important to move the spray gun at a consistent speed so that the paint is applied evenly.
This will reduce the chances of getting heavy or light areas, and will allow you to achieve a more consistent finish.
Also, safety is also a crucial rule when using an airless spray gun, ensuring to wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) like a respirator mask.
Goggles, coveralls, and work in a well-ventilated area.
FAQ’s of How to use airless paint sprayers
Conclusion on How to use airless paint sprayers
Now that you’ve got an airless sprayer, you need the right type and amount of paint, and a few tips to get the job done. I’ve got that, too.
My post on how to use and set up an airless paint sprayer will help you determine and buy the right one, including all of the parts you need.
I’ve also included ways to get the most out of your sprayer, instructions on how to set it up, and some helpful tips to get the most out of your investment.
Matthew Edward is a professional painter who loves to paint and wants to share useful tips and tricks which he had learned in many years of experience in painting. He also used many products that can be used for painting he has tried and tested each and every product to give an unbias opinion about it in his review. This blog is very useful for those newbies who want to learn painting without making mistakes.