Conventional Spray Guns vs Airless Paint Sprayers

If you are a professional painter, you may have noticed that there are several types of paint sprayers. This may be confusing for some beginners to start with. So, in this article we are going to explain the difference between conventional spray guns and airless paint sprayers. Hopefully, through this article, you can decide which kind or paint sprayers will be suitable for you.

The Difference
In terms of transfer efficiency, conventional and airless are pretty equal. Now, you may wonder, why we should bother to know the difference when it is just the same. The difference depends on what is most important for you, production or control and finish quality.

Conventional Air Spray
This is because in conventional air spray, you are still able to control painting process. On the other hand, it will be more difficult to control it in the airless spray. However, you can control over both your fluid pressure and atomization pressure with conventional spray gun, particularly using a pressure pot. By this, you can determine the amount of paint you want to supply and the degree of breakup or atomization you want to achieve. With conventional sprayer you will not be able to achieve the volume of paint being sprayed. But, this can be done with an airless sprayer. For example an airless sprayer ranges from 0.3 gallons a minute up to 2 gallons a minute. Fluid tip is a tool that controls the rate and leaves little room for adjustment of the amount of fluid supplied. On the other hand, a conventional gun usually has a side output of about 0.35 gallons a minute. Moreover, you can also control your fluid output by changing tip sizes and adjusting fluid pressure on your pressure pot.

Airless Paint Sprayer
On the other side, to control application speed in the airless spray, all you need are fluid tips and operator technique. In fact, controlling fluid and air atomization is the key to achieve finer finishes and better control of the paint. Furthermore, you will have greater production but you will find it a bit difficult to control, especially if you are an inexperienced painters.

Interior House Painting Tips (How to Paint Doors, Windows & Trim)

How to make your good paint job turn into a great one? The answer is simple, you only need to properly paint the door, windows, and trim areas. Some painters will ignore this area as it demands for a tedious work and really time consuming. But, if you do put more efforts in these areas, you’ll see that the result is worth it. To make your door, windows, and trim area looks perfect, first you need great paint tools. To work in this project you may need an airless sprayer and a brush. Below are the tips that you need to follow:


  • Prep

Before applying any paint, make sure you prepare the door. First, you may need to use a paintable wood filler to furnish any dings, dents, or holes in the surface, and then smooth it with sand. Moreover, you may need to give them a quick scuff-sand with some 220-grit sandpaper to allow the newly applied coating to bond better. Use a clean cloth to wipe out any dust from the surface after sanding.

Moreover, you may need to apply an oil-based or latex-based primer for bare wood prior to painting if your doors are bare wood. Don’t forget to caulk with a high quality paintable caulking between the gaps where any trim touches the walls. Make sure that the door’s hardware (locket, hinges, and latch) have either been removed. Last but not least, ensure that you have taped-off the door’s hardware, such as lockset, hinges, and latch to avoid them getting painted.

  • Paint

If you are working with a 6 panel door, there are several tips that you can follow in order to get the best result:

  1. Start by painting the edges on the hinge and latch sides of the door.
  2. Following the sequencing order in the picture below, paint the panels, starting from the molding and border detail along the perimeter of each panel first, after that painting the flat panel surface. Use your brush to feather out any excess paint and brush in the direction of the wood grain.
  3. In the end, paint the rails and the styles. Use the brush to feather out any excess paint and brushing in the direction of the wood grain. To apply the paint to the surface faster, you can use a 4” mini roller. Move it back and forth with your brush to suit the brush-stroke texture of the rest of the door.

If you want to obtain a complete uniform coverage, you need to apply a second coat.

Basically, you need to do the same preparation with what you’ve done with the doors. To paint a single-hung window, you may need to remove the lower sash by removing the window stop trim. If you have double-hung windows, here are some steps to paint your windows professionally:

  1. Pulling the upper one down and the lower one up to reverse the sashes. Paint the lower sash and the bottom half of the upper sash, in the direction of the wood grain. Let the paint to lap ever so slightly onto the glass where the wood and glass meet. This will prevent the edge of the wood to keep moisture out. Clean up any excess paint after your paint dry on the glass.
  2. Sliding the upper and lower sash to un-reserve the sashes. Use remained paint of the upper sash in the direction of the wood grain. This will allow your paint line slightly onto the glass.
  3. Finish your work with a smaller brush in the direction of the wood, especially if your muntins are not removable. Don’t forget to allow your paint line slightly onto the glass.
  4. Finish your work by painting the window trim top to bottom, doing the edges first then the face of the trim.

Let the paint dry by opening the sashes. However, to prevent the window from sticking, you need to move each sash up and down daily for one week.

Conduct the same preparation as you did for the doors and windows before you start painting. Then, you can start painting in one corner of the room and work your way around the room back to the starting point, following the direction of the wood grain. If you have more than one level or molding or trim in rooms, you can start from the upper most molding first then proceed to the lower molding.

Types of Primer (Paint) that You Need to Know

Not every painting project needs primers. But, using primer before painting will make the result looks stunning and make the paint sticks better and longer. If you haven’t been familiar with primer, the first thing you should do is to get to know it. Below is some information about primer that you need to know before applying it with your airless spray paint brush and etc.

Drywall Primer
It is a good idea if you want to achieve a consistent appearance with your final coat. Besides, you can save your tight budget with a quality drywall primer. It is typically much less expensive per gallon than using multiple coats of a quality interior latex paint.

Wood Primer
It can be said that bare wood is one of the most difficult substrates for a paint topcoat to stick to. In fact, it takes a long time for an oil based primer on bare wood to dry. Yet, it will stick longer than any other type of primer to wood.

Even though it sticks better, but some people do not want to wait too long. Fortunately, paint manufacturers have developed new, faster-drying technology in both oil and latex-based products that dry quickly yet still aid in the proper adhesion of your paint topcoat.

Masonry Primer
There are several factors why you need to apply a masonry primer before paint. First, if you apply paint directly to the surface, some masonry surfaces can have a high pH level cause adhesion problems. However, using a quality masonry primer will enable you to safely paint over a wider range of pH levels.

Next, Efflorescence is another problem. Efflorescence is a crystalline deposit that can form on any masonry surface. It looks unsightly white in your wall. Fortunately, many masonry primers are efflorescent-resistant and do a great job of keeping it from becoming a problem.

Stain-Blocking Primer
You can find much kind of stain-blocking primers which are aimed for specific uses. In general, stain-blocking primer is usually used to keeping water and smoke stains/damage from bleeding through the finish coat; painting over top of crayon, marker, or grease. Besides, it can also be used to make a dramatic color change, especially, if you are planning to paint a lighter color over a darker color.

Bonding Primer
Each surface has their characteristics. Some surface are especially “slick” and make a good challenge for even the best primers to stick. For instance, ceramic tile, glazed block, some plastics and vinyls, and surfaces with a high gloss finish. But, don’t worry as the correct bonding primer will produce a great adhesion of your finish coat to the surface.

Basic Parts of an Airless Sprayer

Working with airless sprayer is a must if you want to be a professional painter. For every experienced painters know that airless spray is the fastest tool to distribute paint. However, working with airless sprayer is not as simple as working with paint brush or paint roller. You may need a little practice and knowledge on how to operate it. Below is information of some basic parts of an airless pump.

Thus, you can use this information as a guide before you begin your paint project with an airless sprayer.

– on/off switch
– Pressure control knob :  This knob is used to manage the pressure to push the paint through the pump.
– pick up tube : A large siphon tube that draws the paint from the bucket into the machine.
– Prime tube : A smaller flexible tube ejects paint to show you when it is primed
– Prime/spray knob: A knob to switch pump from the ‘prime mode’ to ‘spray mode’.
– Spray hose: A 50′ in length high-pressure hose that bring the paint from the pump to the gun.
– Gun: Functionate to control the spray. The gun is attached to the end of the spray hose and completed with a trigger.
– Guard: sticks onto the nozzle of the gun and manages the spray tip in place.
– Spray tip: Slides into the guard and atomizes the paint as it passes through it.

The spray tip will manage the amount of material that passes through the gun as well as the fan pattern size. Besides, you can figure out your spray tip size through the three numbers you see on the package. When you’re holding the gun 1 foot from the surface, you can see the first number is half the width of the spray pattern that you’ll see on the wall. The last two numbers are the orifice size. It should be selected based on your paint manufacturer.  For example, if your manufacturer asks for a 0.17 orifice size, so the right size should be 417. Then, make an 8″ wide spray pattern on your wall with each pass your gun.

Tips for Bringing Out the Best in Your Airless Sprayers Paint

Many painters will refer to airless sprayers when it comes to painting project; especially for large area painting. If you are a beginner, you may think that it is easy to use airless spray for painting. But, you may need to reconsider it as it is not like spraying arbitrarily. In fact, if you want to be a professional painter, you need to know several tips for a perfect result. Check them out below!

Set the Proper Pressure
The Viscosity of the coating being used and the temperature will depend on the proper pump pressures. In fact, with cooler temperatures, you can have viscous or thicker finish. You can simply turn up the pump pressure to the maximum and spray to solve any potential problem. However, this will increase the wasted paint because of bounce-back and more dry spray.

As a solution, you can find the pressure that removes the “tails” in the spray pattern with lesser pressure.  Tails are the thicker part of paint or finish lines at the edges of the spray pattern and slightly separated from the rest of the pattern. By turning up the pump pressure, the spray pattern becomes even. Hence, stop turning up the pressure once the tails disappear.

Replace Worn Spray Tips
The spray tip is where the liquid comes out through the pump. It looks like a hole and is squeezed to create an elongated opening or two little “wings” of metal that are used to squeeze the pattern. So, how do you know that your spray tip still works properly? The only way to determine is to spray a short horizontal burst on vertical scrap wood or cardboard. Your tip is worn if it produces much longer in the middle than at the edges.

Use a Proper Size Tip
We all know that spray paint varies in size and each size aims for a particular result. For example, a smaller tip is usually used for a clear lacquer or varnish and a larger tip for latex paint. You also may find that tips usually come with a three-digit number such as 309 or 517. The first number refers to one-half the fan width in inches with the spray gun held 12 inches from the surface. The last two digits refer to the size of the orifice in thousands of an inch.

As your information, 409 to 511 tips will be suitable for spraying clear finishes while 517 to 619 is for spraying latex paint.

Keep the Filters Clean
Generally, an airless sprayer has three filters. The first filter is at the inlet to the siphon hose. The second is in the sprayer’s manifold and catches globs of paint of finish before they reach the spray gun. The last is in the spray gun.

To prevent any clogging, damage to piston and to get the most debris-free results, make sure you keep these three filters clean.

Safety Tips
Don’t forget to use a tip guard when spraying. When it isn’t in use, engage the trigger lock on the spray gun. Moreover, remember to shutting off the pump first and releasing the pressure before making adjustments to the spray gun.

Tips for Exterior Painting with Airless Spray Gun

Painting for exterior design can be a bit different compared to painting for interior design. This is why we need different techniques when it comes to exterior painting jobs. But before we come to the tips, we need to know the right tools to finish the job and there’s no more better way to deliver paint onto a surface than with airless spray gun. In addition, you also need paint brush and roller to make perfect your work. Now, you have all the tools, here are some tips that will make you paint like an ace!

Adjust the Sprayer, Starting with Low Pressure
Adjusting the proper pressure setting on the sprayer will rely on the thickness of the paint. Therefore, the best way to start it by setting the pressure on low and make a pass on a scrap piece of cardboard or rosin paper. But, you need to be more careful as setting the pressure too low will make the result uneven and there’ll be “fingers” on the edges. Set up the pressure until you get a nice, even spray pattern with a consistent edge. If after the pressure all the setting the pattern still looks poor, you may need to change your tip size one goes up.

Keep the Sprayer Gun Upright to the Wall
The tip of the sprayer should be held about 12 in from the wall with the gun remain upright to the wall.  In fact, this is the basic technique for a professional finish. At first, the result might not satisfy you yet, but after only a few passes you’ll be painting like a pro. Practice on a low-visibility wall until you nail it.

Overlap 50 Percent
Release the trigger at the end of each pass and overlap the pattern for about 50 percent. Before pulling the trigger you can start the gun in motion. Point the tip upward to get enough paint on the bottom portion of the board when spraying under lap siding or the side of trim boards. Bear in mind to always start at the top of the wall and work your way down.

Back Brush and Back-Roll
If you think that spraying paint all over your wall is enough, you are wrong! As paint sprayer is only a paint delivery system. To make the paint stick to the surface for years, you need to push the paint into every crack and crevice and underneath every lap with a brush, after that, back-roll the paint with paint roller. Hence, don’t spray width area all at once as the paint could be dried before you can roll it out.

Pay Attention to the Weather
The best weather for painting is a cloudy weather as direct sunlight will make the paint dries before you have time to back brush and back roll. Moreover, rainy day is also impossible for painting. That is why; cloudy weather is the best weather for painting.

Reverse the Tip to Purge Clogs
Most Spray Tips are reversible the arrow as they have an arrow on them. When your sprayer starts producing an uneven spray pattern, you may have a clog in the tip. If that happens, you can turn the tip 180 degrees and spray some paint onto a piece of cardboard or rosin paper for a while. After that, turn back the tip and continue painting. This will help you purge the debris. But, if this way doesn’t work, you need to clean the tip or one or more of the inline filters.


5 Basic Techniques to Spray Paint like a Pro

Some people think that painting with sprayer is easier than painting with paint roller or brush. But, if you’re not familiar with it, the results can be disappointing. Therefore, to prevent you from making any errors in your painting projects, you can read the following techniques. In fact, there are many things that you can take as a good consideration when it comes to spray painting. Here are them:

Using a Spray Gun
If you paint for a living, you better buy a spray gun with a compressor. This tool works best at a large painting job and it produces you with a fine spray. A spray gun uses the air delivered from your compressor to draw paint from a paint basin. Then, burst it through a nozzle.

Basic Spray Paint Techniques
It is important to clean, free of rust and debris, and smooth your surface with sandpaper or steel wool before using a lint-free cloth to remove any remaining dust. This is because any surface bumps or imperfections will appear through the paint.

After cleaning the object, you can start with a can of spray paint. Shake it for 3 or 4 minutes to mix the paint thoroughly. Make a space between the can and surface for about 10” to 12”, aimed to one side. Then, in one fluid motion, move the paint horizontally across the surface. Don’t forget to use your entire arm when moving the can. Moreover, drying time can be different at different rates. So, you can read the instructions on the back of the can to know more about its drying time.

Painting Small Objects
If your object is small, you can use a paint booth to reduce overspray. Then, you can use a cardboard box on its side to set up a makeshift paint booth. Place the object on a turntable. This will help you paint from all angles easier as it allows you to spin it without touching.

Use a Respirator
Most of spray paint fumes contain toxic, so you better wear a mask or a respirator. However, we suggest you to use a respirator for better protection than a mask which offers a very little protection.

A respirator may be a little expensive compared to a mask. But, it is still much cheaper than going to the doctor for respiratory problems. A respirator with replaceable filter costs just $20 or $30 and it will survive many paint projects. So, in the long run a respirator is safer and cheaper than a mask.

Reviving Old Cans of Paint
After several usages, sometimes a spray paint will stop to spray. If this happens you can remove the nozzle. Then, soak it overnight in mineral spirits or paint thinner to dissolve the paint.

If the above technique does not work for you, you can put the can in a bucket of hot water. This will reduce the adhesiveness of the paint and help the pressure in the can. Remember to use hot water not boiling water.