Learn how to apply spray paint like a professional contractor with our most recent off site spraying article. We will discuss how to use the spraying equipment, how you can get a smooth finish as well as a couple of reliable spraying techniques to help you perfect your project.
Benefits of an Airless Sprayer
There are so many benefits available to you when you apply paint via airless spray painting. However, if you are looking at painting an area quickly, a roller and traditional paint brush may be your best bet. However, if it is a crystal clear finish you are looking for, in minimal time – an airless sprayer will be your best bet.
Airless spraying units apply paint at extremely high pressures. This is usually done so through a hose with specific application accessories. At the very end of the spraying gun, the application tip utilises tiny holes that allow you to apply an even coating. There are many different types of finishing tips available, a small amount of research may be required but there is certainly a finish for every style. If you remain unsure, simply take a visit to your local handyman or DIY store. They will be able to provide you with some really useful advice based on their previous experiences.
Unfortunately, there are a couple of negatives to airless spraying. As you apply the paint, due to the nature of the application, a large amount of the paint can end up on other, unintentional products as it passes through the air. On average, according to The Family Handyman Blog, this wastes approximately 30-40 percent of the applicable paint.
An additional drawback is the amount of time required to tidy the products once you have finished spraying. It can become quite tricky and often frustrating for users to clear the hose and gun after the initial use. I’m afraid the cleaning does not stop there. If you own your own airless spraying gun, you will need to complete some regular, basic, but quite tricky maintenance. This involves cleaning, or in some cases replacing the filters and the installation of a bespoke storage fluid. If you have used a rental unit, most of the time you will not be required to complete the ongoing maintenance.
So Should I Buy or Hire?
It really does depend on your budget and needs. If you are intending on using the spraying unit as a one off – it may be worth hiring a product from a reliable rental store. However, if you have the cash to spare, and the workload to get your monies worth, purchasing your own could be a real possibility.
Depending on the manufacturer, spraying guns and kits usually start at around the £150 mark, increasing as the quality of the product rises. The more you spend, the better the product, you will generally receive a spray gun with a bigger motor and paint pump.
If you are considering a rental, it’s certainly a good option. For starters, you won’t have to complete the regular maintenance on the filters and storage fluids.
Most decent rental stores will be able to allow you to rent an airless spraying machine from approximately £60 a day, again depending on the quality of the model.
If you have purchased or hired an airless sprayer, we will go through how to prepare it, and apply the paint correctly to your chosen material.
Using an Airless Sprayer
Before you begin using your new sprayer, you need to ensure that the pump is primed and ready for action. There are two main tube that you need to look for here. The suction tube and a smaller, prime tube. Grab yourself two old bucket and place the smaller tube into one of the buckets. With the other one, add the strained paint and add the suction tube.
Once you have done this, you can switch the pump on and turn the pressure valve until the pump on the machine kicks in. When you can see that the paint is starting to move, you can move the tube into the paint bucket.
When you are using the sprayer for any off site spraying you need to make sure that there are no air bubbles present. The easiest way to ensure that the bubbles are removed is by clipping both the suction tube and the smaller tube together, and running the pump until the paint starts to flow with no bubbles.
What Finishing Tip to Use?
The finishing tips are very easy to get hold of and use. They simply slip into a small hole on the front of the spraying gun. They are usually labelled with a small three digit number, such as 209 or 358. These numbers represent a scaled down version of the full product number. If you double the first digit, this is the width of the finishing nozzle. For example, if you find a tip with a number of 309. The finishing tip would be 6-inches.
The remaining two numbers represent the size of the hole in thousandths of an inch.
If you are looking at spraying a large area, a 517 finishing tip would be perfect, giving you a coverage area of 10-inches and 17 thousandths of an inch with the holes.
There are so many application techniques available to use. The most popular is the traditional side to side sweep. Whatever spraying technique you use, try to stick to these tips.
Always plan you spraying/application sequence.
Squeeze the trigger before you have started coating the material or product. Once the paint begins to flow from the gun, begin to coat the product using a side to side motion.
Move the airless sprayer parallel to the surfaces that you are coating. Try not to arch across.
Keep the gun straight. Try not to get drawn into tilting whilst you spray.
Move quickly, don’t spend too much time on a specific area. By applying a number of coatings you will cover any untouched areas.
Try to overlap your strokes between 40 and 50 percent.