Decisive Inputs To Help You Pick The Best Paint Sprayer

A combination of the right pigment and the equipment is the key to the ultimate finish of any paint job. There can be no tradeoffs, if you wish to get a fabulous finish on your paint jobs. This could be a fresh coat of paint on surfaces, painting of wall patches, or simply a little touch up. After you have identified the paint and the color, your next step is freezing the best paint sprayer.

Here’s the difficult part – how does one pick a product that is comprised of seven different main components? What are the various terms, technicalities that one needs to be aware to make the right choice?

Sprayer buying guide for decisive inputs

We’ve simplified all the information that you will ever need to pick the best paint sprayers. We have structured this article into a sprayer buying guide and a review section. The sprayer buying guide tells you all that you need to know about picking good paint sprayers. The review section offers a feature by feature comparison of products, to highlight the pros and cons. The factual inputs help you make a decision supported by critical thinking.

Before we dive headlong into the world of paint sprayers, it is time to get some facts straight, upfront. The average paint sprayer is different from the air brush, so stop thinking of the two interchangeably. Air brushes are used for detailing, while paint sprayers cover large surfaces evenly with paint.

Primary components of a spray painter that you need to be aware of, when you pick one 

Power – The pump in the sprayer requires power through the right amount of torque to force out the aerosolized paint. The efficiency of spraying depends on the ability of the pump to spray a fine layer of paint through the air. Most pumps have around 500W of power, which is good enough for a professional finish. The higher the power, the better the finish.

Pump – The pump in the sprayer moves the paint from the source, through the hose and onto the surface through an orifice. Therefore, it is necessary to choose the right pump – diaphragm or piston. The piston method is pretty simple – it involves two movements. The upward movement creates a vacuum, which draws the paint. The downward movement pushes the paint out with the desired force for the right results.

Pressure control – This helps you control the pressure to get the right level of atomization of the fluid. Overdoing it or doing it with sufficient pressure can have an impact on the finish of the painted surface. A good pressure dial in a sprayer will give you complete control over the fluid pressure, for the desired look. The pressure created in pumps are measured in psi, with the ideal spray painters generating around 29 psi.

Filter – This is a simple barrier, that is intended to trap unwanted particles and debris from making it to the painted surface through the air. A little fleck is enough to ruin the hard work and the costs. While it is not impossible to rectify it, it takes up time and can be a dampener. Ensure that your chosen spray painter has the best filter.

Orifice – This is the final point at which the atomized paint is released to spray paint the surfaces through the air. The pattern of release and the amount of fluid that is released depends on the tip of the spray gun. This is an important aspect that needs to borne in mind when choosing a pray painter.

Now that you have an idea of the primary components, lets roll up our sleeves and get into the nitty gritty. You are bound to face a situation, where you will have to choose models with different features within a category. For instance, this could be type of power in your spray painter or the pump type in your painter.

So, here’s a crisp comparison that will help you zero in on the right choice of sprayers quickly.

Overall comparison between piston pumps and diaphragm pumps – Piston pumps are a better choice for paint surfaces from a distance, such as roofs. Diaphragm pumps are suitable when painting surfaces that are closer, and involve large volumes of paint.

Feature specifications and units that you need to know when picking a spray painter

1.    The power should be around 500 watts

2.     Adjustments on spray gun to spray in different patterns and directions – vertical, horizontal

3.     Easy, effective control of volume of paint forced out through the tip/nozzle

4.     Reversible tips to unclog the tips easily

5.     The best model needs to offer simple cleaning procedures, as cleaning can be tedious

6.     Suitability for use indoors/outdoors as per requirements

7.     Ability to paint from a longer distance – for instance your roofs, hard to reach locations

8.     Compact size and components, long hose length

9.     Suitability for using thicker paints

10.  Longer run time of spray painters will permit you to paint large surfaces

Ideal tip sizes that are suitable for different paints

It is necessary to be aware of the most suitable tip sizes for different paints. The different properties – for instance, thickness and viscosity make specific orifices suitable for different paints. Some of the ideal tip sizes of sprayers for paint are highlighted below :

Elastomeric –           .025 to .035

Heavy Latex –           .021 to .025

Latex –           .015 to .019

Oil paints –           .013 to .015

Laquer –           .009 to .013

Different tips are used for different paint jobs, and it is best to pick a model with the right kind of paint tips. This will ensure that you get the desired finish with the painting sprayer. If you are a first time user of painting sprayers, it would be a good idea to understand the ideal distance between the surface and paint sprayers. it may be necessary to look at the hose length of the HVLP sprayers or the support for maximum hose length of the HVLP sprayers. This also needs to be factored in alongwith the tip size, and the type of paint that you intend to use. Another important point that needs to be remembered is the type of paint job. For instance, if you plan to paint your roof tiles, or a hard to reach location, then you need the right tip on on the best paint sprayers.

Detailed review of ten of the top selling models in the market.

The tech specs, pros and cons will give a clear picture of each paint sprayer model and if it is best suited to meet your specific needs.

1.     Graco Magnum 257025

Tech Specs

·       Flow – .31 gallons per minute

·       Input voltage – 110v

·       Engine power – 0.375 horsepower

·       Weight – 15 lbs

·       Tip Size – 0.009, 0.011, 0.013, 0.015

·       Fully adjustable pressure and paint flow

·       Control spray effectively

·       Tip reversing – Yes

·       Paint from bucket source – Yes

·       Maximum hose length supported – 50 feet

In addition to the impressive specs, this model has the distinction of hailing from the company that gave the world the first airless sprayers. This is more of an entry to mid-level option that is targeted at users who need sprayers for medium size painting requirements – you can use 50 gallons of paint annually in the sprayer. The paint sprayers can be used to handle a wide variety of paints – water, oil based paints, and stains. The tip helps you paint large surfaces easily, especially with paints that have a thicker consistency. The Softspray technology helps you complete paintings of smaller surfaces such as railings. It supports hose length of 50 feet.

What makes this a good choice?

The whole idea of getting a spray painter is to make your job easier. This model does precisely that by atomizing paint through the air. The training videos and user manuals help you to quickly master the use of the sprayers. To put it bluntly, you need a basic level of skills to handle sprayers, and this model aids you in quickly learning the ropes.

Spoilsport

The flushing ritual required to clean it prior to use can be a real dampener. This model does not come with a wheeled cart, which could make it difficult to move it around. It would have helped to have support for longer hose length.

2.     Graco Magnum 262805 X7

Tech Specs

·       Flow – .31 gallons per minute

·       Input voltage – 110v

·       Engine power – 0.625 horsepower

·       Weight – 27 lbs

·       Tip Size – 0.009, 0.011, 0.013, 0.015, 0.017

·       Paint flow control – Yes, fully adjustable

·       Easy tip reversing

·       Paint from bucket source – Yes

·       Maximum hose length supported – 100 feet

It is not surprising that the best models in the market are from the Graco Stable, as the company specializes in paint sprayers. This is the next level of sprayers, the advanced and heavy duty model with a wheeled cart to help you move the 27 lbs unit easily. This is targeted at users who need sprayers for relatively large size painting requirements – you can use 125 gallons of paint annually in the sprayers. The sprayers can be used to handle a wide variety of paints – water, oil based paints, and stains. The easy reversible tip helps unclog the tip quickly, and the advanced Softspray technology is a huge advantage. It helps you handle painting requirements of smaller segments with the professional touch.  It supports a maximum hose length of 100 feet.

What makes this a good choice?

The support for garden hose length upto 100 feet makes this the right choice when you need to paint high structures without having to paint through the air. The .625 horsepower can whip up the right kind of power required to paint a fine mist over the desired surface through the air. As a heavy duty painter, this is a good choice for large requirements.

Spoilsport

As it is not easy to clean after using oil-based paints, this can be challenging. You need to take time out to flush it and drain it properly. Despite the wheeled cart assembly, it is not the most easy model or the best one to handle when used outdoors in uneven landscape.

3.     Wagner Spraytech 0518080

Tech Specs

·       Dual air filters

·       Input voltage – 110v

·       1.50 to 2.63 psi

·       Weight – 11 lbs

·       Adjustable pressure and paint flow control

·       Reversible tip

·       Maximum hose length supported – 20 feet

This dual air filter model pairs the best combination of low pressure with high volume to give a fine mist of atomized paint for a perfect finish. You can use this for getting the ideal spray for painting – woodworking, for patches on your furniture or decks or to stain furniture. The sprayers support different paint materials, giving you the flexibility to paint as desired. The fully adjustable paint flow, controlled by a pressure control dial gives you full flexibility to paint as desired. Additionally, the tips allow you to paint as per your desired spray pattern – round, horizontal or vertical.

What makes this a good choice?

By virtue of being a HVLP dual air filter model, it is easy to quickly learn the ropes. The three different patterns supported – horizontal, vertical and round helps you to achieve desired results faster. The ability to control flow on the gun gives you faster control over the flow. The brass tips are corrosion free and sturdy.

Spoilsport

The time taken for painting a targeted area is more when you use a HVLP painter, when compared with an airless model. The short hose length and the relatively lesser pressure, makes this suitable only for a limited number of uses.

4.     HomeRight C800766

Tech Specs

·       2 mm precision spray tip

·       Suitable for use with all types of paints

·       Viscosity cup to measure thickness of paint

·       Adjustable air cap for patterns – horizontal, vertical and round

·       Adjustable paint flow control

·       3.1 lbs

·       400 watts power

These are electric paint sprayers which drums up 400 watts of power to give you a superfine glossy finish. This is best for small projects and limited surface area painting – for instance, your home. Depending on the type of finish required, the coverage area can be anywhere between 7 x 10 feet to 10 x 10 feet. With 3 gallon capacity for unthinned paint, this is suitable for smaller targeted areas.

What makes this a good choice?

This is a compact, uncomplicated design that ticks all the boxes in when your paint job is relatively small. The precision brass tips give you great quality, improved consistency and full control over the desired patterns. The tips last long and are resistant to corrosion.

Spoilsport

Not the right choice for commercial painting. Slight texture formation on surface reported. This means that you need to choose the right kind of paint and handle it properly. Designed for small projects, especially ones that involve only finish.

5.     Wagner REXBETI Ultimate-750

Tech Specs

·       Input voltage – 120v

·       500 watts

·       Weight – 3.64 lbs

·       1000 ml container

·       Nozzle – 2.0mm/2.5mm/3.0mm

·       Cord length – 6.6 feet

·       Adjustable pressure and paint flow regulator

·       Different nozzles support all paints

·       Maximum viscosity – 500 DIN-s

These electric paint sprayers are another compact model that is suitable for relatively smaller surface area painting. The powerful model dispenses 750 ml paint per minute, which combines with the high volume low pressure category to offer you desired results. The simplified spray tip needs to be turned to get the right spray pattern. Ideal for painting chairs, tables, and furniture, this lightweight model is one among the best and most handy.

What makes this a good choice?

This HVLP model is compact, lightweight and offers complete flexibility in painting spray patterns. It is extremely convenient for quick paint jobs. Suitable for furniture and wood spray painting, it is easy to clean due to the uncomplicated design.

Spoilsport

As a compact HVLP painter this is not suitable for commercial grade spray painting requirements. It does drip at times, and this may turn out to be a bit annoying if you want the best paint finish. You need to keep a careful eye on the viscosity of the paint used to ensure that you achieve a fine mist through the air.

6.     VonHaus Paint Gun Electric

Tech Specs

·       35 fl Oz capacity

·       Fully adjustable spray pattern

·       Adjustable air cap for spray patterns

·       Compact, ultra convenient handling

·       6.49 lbs

·       Viscosity – 60 DIN-s

·       6.5 Amp

In addition to high speed spray painting, the 35 fl Oz capacity ensures that paint jobs are not interrupted frequently. The spray gun model supports thinned painting requirements easily, and gives your home a great finish with a single coat. The 6.5 A motor works up impressive power for high volume painting of thinned paints. The adjustable spray pattern and flow helps you to complete painting faster and as desired.

What makes this a good choice?

This is a compact spray gun, and comes with a convenient shoulder strap that helps you to exercise full control. Ideal for small jobs, helps avoid the need for complex or complicated equipment.

Spoilsport

Overheating is a problem that you will face if this is used for a long time. Suitable only for quick paint jobs, it is not meant for continuous spray painting of large areas.

7.     OBEN Paint Sprayers

Tech Specs

·       550 watts high power motor

·       Weight 3.42 lbs

·       Adjustable flow control for increased efficiency

·       Nozzles – 1.0mm/1.8mm/2.5mm/3.0mm

·       Compact high volume low pressure model

·       Three different spray patterns – horizontal, vertical, circular

This high volume low pressure painter comes with a 800 ml container which makes it suitable for small paint jobs. The adjustable valve on the spray gun makes it easy to optimize the flow. Four different nozzle sizes are compatible, which gives complete control over type of finish. The compact and light weight model comes with the advantage of greater convenience. Handling and easy to use, the features of the model makes it fully user friendly and suitable for projects.

What makes this a good choice?

Easy to use unit, suitable for home spray painting needs. Four nozzles give you the ability to get the desired finish on various objects and sizes and the right spray patterns. Gives you full flexibility for staining decks and maintaining your fence.

Spoilsport

Not suitable for large requirements. 800 ml container suitable only for limited spray painting requirements. Needs to be held as close as possible to the surface to get the best finish with available pressure.

8.     Graco Ultra Max Cordless Airless

Tech Specs

·       20 V Lithium ion battery powered

·       2000 psi pressure

·       Cordless, airless – Triax Triple Piston

·       RAC X FFLP Tips

·       All paint materials, including lacquers

·       Quick charge model

·       Sprays one gallon paint on a single charge

This is one of the most unique models listed here in the review. These airless sprayers is battery powered and can pray paint one gallon of unthinned paint in one single charge. If you need compact sprayers for your home with high pressure for use on objects/surfaces that are hard to reach, this is the model. Powered by a Triax Triple Piston pump, the compact model offers you the luxury of easy maintenance. With a good pressure range of 500 to 2000 psi, the model comes with adjustable motor speeds for greater flexibility.

What makes this a good choice?

A simple, uncomplicated, high performing model. It cannot get more compact or user friendly than this. The fast charging, 20V Dewalt Lithium batteries makes this ultra convenient. Replaceable spray tips gives you the flexibility to choose tips as per requirements.

Spoilsport

Intended only for small requirements. With one gallon of paint on a full charge, it means that you can only use it on surfaces that require a little less than one gallon of paint. Surface areas larger than that will require the unit to be recharge before use. That is not practical – the paint would appear different in patches.

9.     Fuji 2202 Semi-PRO 2 HVLP 

Tech Specs

·       Input – 120 Volts

·       Weight – 25.1 lbs

·       Hose length – 25 feet

·       Metal turbine

·       Gravity cup capacity – 400 cc

·       Pattern control fan

·       1400W 2 stage bypass motor

This is a professional quality spray painter, with high pressure, and comes with a long list of impressive features. The gravity cup of 400 cc that is attached to the spray gun helps you to quickly complete paint jobs, without frequent refills. The spray pattern control feature is extremely useful and convenient. It permits you to gradually increase the size of the spray painting pattern, giving you greater precision and control. This also helps to fully control the quantity of paint used. The powerful 1400 W 2 stage bypass motor handles all paint types with relative ease, making it suitable for all requirements

What makes this a good choice?

This is professional grade with non-bleed qualities, making it suitable for all tasks. You get premium finishes with this model faster. As the model comprises fewer parts, it is easy to clean, with simplified maintenance.  This is a fully automatic device, which makes it easy to use by both professionals and beginners, eliminating errors.

Spoilsport

An acknowledged issue is the clogging of one of the tubes, which requires it to be cleaned after shutting down. An additional choice of air cap would have certainly made the purchase more worthy.

10.  Fuji 3005-T70 Q5 Platinum

Tech Specs

·       Input – 120 Volts

·       Weight – 39.4 lbs

·       Hose length – 25 feet

·       5 stage metal turbine

·       Variable speed control

·       Pattern control knob

·       Heat dissipation chamber, reduces noise

·       1 quart bottom feed cup

·       1500 W power

This belongs to the category of industrial spray painting equipment with high pressure. This is ideal for large painting requirements by professionals, and comes with hose length of 25 feet. The heat dissipation chamber gives it patented noise reduction capability. The model comes with a host of components – pressurized 400 cc gravity cup, T-model spray gun, cleaning materials, air control valve and viscosity cup among others.  The powerful 1500 W motor drums up a massive power that makes spray painting more efficient. The build quality is rugged, and intended to last long with corrosion free materials. The non-bleed design ensures that when the trigger is depressed, only air passes through the gun. This prevents accumulation of paint around the tip in the nozzle.

What makes this a good choice?

This heavy duty model is the most suitable one for commercial use. It can be used with all paints and works for extended periods of time. The sprayers give ultimate finish of the desired type and its non-bleed design prevents the area from whipping up dust clouds when in use. It is suitable for use by professionals as well as novices, by virtue of the user friendly controls. It is simple to maintain and clean, despite being commercial grade.

Spoilsport

Hose overheating reported by users after an hour of use. The latch quality of the cup could do with improvements. This is a frequently reported complaint, which means that it is a question of component/material quality and not incorrect use. It would have helped to have a longer hose.

Roundup – Top features that you need to look for in the shortlisted model(s)

The following questions will help you identify the top features that you need to look for in the best paint sprayers.

What is the best paint sprayer for home use? Is the requirement for smaller spaces or large spaces?

In the event that your spray painting requirement is for larger spaces, you need a heavy duty model. For instance the Graco Magnum is commercial grade and will work for long spells. Smaller compact models will overheat in a short period. These models are suitable for painting your home and are not to be used for large painting requirements.

Does the spray painting involve locations that are high from ground level?

There are two ways to look at this. You could either use a compact model that you can take to any height in your home and complete your job, or you can use a model with a long hose. You can narrow down the choice of sprayers by looking at the area that needs to be painted. In the event that the area to be painted is small, you can use a HVLP compact model. For large areas, choose the commercial grade models with a lengthy hose.

Do you plan to use thinned paints or thick paints?

While most of the models featured above support both thick and thinned paints, there are differences in performance. For instance, if you use thick paints, you will have to power off some models after five minutes of operation. You will then have to leave a gap of 30 minutes before restarting. In high performance models, this will not be necessary, as all paints are supported. Therefore, if you have identified your needs, it is easier.

Is the maintenance of the sprayer complicated?

Do you have the time for complicated mineral spirits or water cleaning of the parts after painting your home? If you have the time, then it will not be a problem in any model. However, if you do not have the time or the patience, then choose a simple uncomplicated model. The professional grade models require to be flushed properly for best performance.

Do you need sprayers with high volume capacity?

Imagine having to carry out multiple refills for a paint job in your home. It is not the ideal option, especially if the paint is expected to dry quickly. There could be a slight variation in color between the first patch and the last patch. The best option is to choose sprayers with higher capacity, which will permit you to complete larger areas in one go. This will dispense with the need to refill frequently.

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