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Airless paint sprayer?
Old 07-28-2019, 03:04 PM   #1
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Airless paint sprayer?

I'm thinking hard about pulling the trigger on an airless paint sprayer, this one on Amazon. While I've used small size spray painting gear before (mostly for R/C airplanes) I'm thinking of this one for exterior house painting. I tried one of those yellow-colored HVLP painters with the quart-size cup underneath but to be charitable, it did not work well. And I did try thinning the paint. The paint is Sherwin-Williams Emerald Exterior Latex and is about the thickest paint I've ever used, which I'm sure is why the other gizmo didn't work. That, and holding the the weight of it out front gave me a severe backache in about 20 minutes to the point that I was popping a Percocet during the cleanup. I'm thinking with the paint can and pump sitting on the ground that won't happen. I hope anyway.

I forget who, but at least one forum member works or used to work at a paint company. That person has probably forgotten more about paint than I'll ever know so hopefully they will chime in with their perspective. And of course anyone else who has used an airless paint sprayer. Other than youtube videos I've only seen one being used once IRL and I was amazed at the speed that guy had with it. Obviously he'd been using it for a while and was highly skilled with it. I'd be thrilled to move at one-eighth his pace.

DW correctly notes that for the price of this paint sprayer and a few items to go with it like masking materials we could probably hire a painter and have it done. But I've always taken the tack that "if I buy this expensive tool, not only will this job get done, but I'll still have the tool for future jobs, and that's more cost-effective". Nonetheless, she's okay with spending that much on the tool.



Your thoughts?
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Old 07-28-2019, 03:11 PM   #2
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We had a recent thread on airless sprayers here, you may find something of use there.

I used a cheap Wagner airless rig a long time ago and did not like it.

I will be doing some exterior painting on a masonry home soon, I'll probably look into a roller with pumped paint (slurped up into the pole or something more complicated).

ETA: Can you rent an airless sprayer like the one you are looking at? That would seem preferable to me for something that won't be used often. And, if you don't like it, you won't be out much.
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Old 07-28-2019, 03:26 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by samclem View Post
ETA: Can you rent an airless sprayer like the one you are looking at?
I could, but it's an hour drive each way and not as strong as the one I'm thinking of buying so I'm not even sure it would work. The thickness of the paint, even thinned, was definitely an issue with the Wagner one I tried using.
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Old 07-28-2019, 03:29 PM   #4
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You can usually rent a high-quality airless from the paint store you get your paint from when you need it. They can be very expensive to buy, especially a good one. Unless you paint for a living, it's a large investment just for a single home. Prepping can be a whole different process with an airless too.

They are also extremely powerful and you can hurt yourself with them if not careful. An airless can take your finger off if you put it in front of the nozzle. There's nothing better though than an airless sprayer to paint large areas very quickly and in one coat (with quality paint). It's amazing.
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Old 07-28-2019, 04:29 PM   #5
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Questionable if you’d use it enough to be worth it.
I spent evenings and weekends for three months scraping my 1800’s house down to bare wood and then taking two hours to paint each coat with an airless sprayer. You cannot take your finger off with one in my experience... maintain a wet edge and you’d get a house painted really quickly. I used a Graco rig to paint my house, the most expensive in store rig from Lowe’s and it works really well.
Idaho painter has a number of good YouTube videos for painting with a sprayer.
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Old 07-28-2019, 04:48 PM   #6
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And yes-a hvlp sprayer with a cup underneath the nozzle is not sufficient regardless of what the ads claim. You’ll be fatigues very quickly and will lose the wet edge.
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Old 07-28-2019, 04:49 PM   #7
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Questionable if you’d use it enough to be worth it.
There is that of course, but if I don't buy it and use it, I will learn nothing.

Some think nothing of dropping $2k on a very nice recliner, something I would never do just because neither one of us has that interest. We don't spend on travel, again no interest in it, and spend little on dining out, clothing, or the myriad of other things that other people do and we don't.

So in thinking more about it, the real rationale/justification would be simply the experience of learning to do something I've never done before. And of course there is no fixed price on that.
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Old 07-28-2019, 05:11 PM   #8
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When I had my house (stucco) painted 5 years ago the painters used Sherwin Williams paint (5 gal buckets) and an airless paint sprayer. The two man crew obviously knew what they were doing and made quick work out of it, one day of prep work and one day painting. The paint job still looks great after 5 years.
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Old 07-28-2019, 06:29 PM   #9
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I bought this one when I decided to ship lap our attic conversion. So much easier than brush/roller! I practiced on sheets of cardboard until I had the technique down. Compared to roller, it's a much better finish and texture.

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Old 07-28-2019, 07:20 PM   #10
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Way back, I purchased airless paint sprayer. Painted 3 exterior homes. 2 interiors.
Easily paid for itself. You might watch professional painters. Ask them what brand they use. Someone in the neighbor hood is always having a house painted.

Couple of tips.

1. Painting the eves, under the roof, is where an airless painter really saves time.

2. I hung "tarps" from roof/gutter. So paint spray, would not drift on neighbors house.

3. Painting the vertical sides of the house. Seems to work best if one person sprays,
and a 2nd person, using a roller with long pole, "rolls" up and down. No need to
add paint to roller.

4. Respirator.

5. Be careful. Paint under high pressure. Potential to spray paint into skin.

6. All in one, paint sprayer, (paint "jar") attached. Junk. To heavy and you are
consonantly stopping to refill.

7. Ask neighbors to move their cars, and pick a non-windy day.

8. Be sure and clean sprayer after use. To avoid getting "glogs" in the system.
ie. dried paint. Not hard, but cannot get lazy in maintenance.

9. Good luck.
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Old 07-29-2019, 09:17 PM   #11
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I have used a lot of airless sprayers. That sprayer is decent for a homeowner. If you use it one time, it will pay for itself. Learn how to clean it. Both the hose, the spray gun.

Look at what the paint needs in terms of spray tip size and pressure. It seems like the sprayer should be able to do the job, although not by much.


Emerald Exterior Acrylic Latex Paint - Specs Spray—Airless
Pressure ............................................ 2000 psi
Tip ................................................ .015"-.019"
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Old 07-29-2019, 09:41 PM   #12
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I bought a Graco that sits over a 5 gallon bucket. It was well used when I bought it 35 years ago. Painted many houses and garages with it, and a number of inside new construction walls. It is a paint slinging machine!

As Senator said- make sure you clean it up, and replace the nozzles when they get worn out. You need to have a plan when you are painting, because it goes quick.

My son put a new gun on it a few months ago. Still going strong.


added: I just looked on eBay, there are a number of refurbished units being sold that look to be about half the money and with a one year warranty. (But I don't know how the specs compare.) It might be worth a look. The outfit selling them looks to handle quite a range of units. I have bought a number of semi-pro items as refurbs and have had good luck with them. You want to make sure you are dealing with a distributor or similar, and not the local pawn shop.
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