Worth buying a paint sprayer?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Finishing forum

Forum topic by saltcod posted 05-21-2015 04:27 PM 1357 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View saltcod's profile


69 posts in 1146 days

05-21-2015 04:27 PM

Topic tags/keywords: paint sprayer

Hey all!

I’ve got a TON of painting to do at our new house. Basically every single room needs (/wants)to be painted over the next while. I’ve also got a large-ish deck, some outdoor furniture, and I’m getting into more and more woodworking projects.


1. Are paint sprayers “worth it”? By which I mean: are they more trouble than they’re worth? Do they do a good job, etc?

2. Can one sprayer do all of these jobs? Walls, doors, decks, outside furniture, ww projects, etc?

Recommendations welcome!


8 replies so far

View pintodeluxe's profile


5653 posts in 2807 days

#1 posted 05-21-2015 04:39 PM

For me, the best spray systems are different depending on the job. I select an airless sprayer with the appropriate tip for outdoor or large painting projects. An airless sprayer works well for interior new construction, but once the finished floor is installed it may be easier to paint with a roller.

For spraying furniture I use a gravity feed HVLP gun. If you already own a compressor, they can be had for
$20-100 depending on the model.

Good luck.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View saltcod's profile


69 posts in 1146 days

#2 posted 05-21-2015 04:41 PM


I do indeed have a compressor — a small 6G Bostich that came with the nailgun. Would that do the trick?

I should look into these small guns though — $20-100 isn’t bad at all.

View Matt Rogers's profile

Matt Rogers

109 posts in 1964 days

#3 posted 05-21-2015 04:42 PM

I got a Graco airless sprayer last year and it makes house painting soo much faster. Mask off the windows with the plastic that has the tape already attached, and you can do a whole wall in just a few minutes. They are easy to control where the paint will go. The only problem that I had was forgetting to mask off the edge of a metal porch roof that I was painting right next to (I got right up there with a wet rag and got it all off). I am going to use it to paint a set of adirondack chairs, but also have an HVLP for other furniture. It is the heavy exterior paints that the HVLP won’t do.

-- Matt Rogers, and

View saltcod's profile


69 posts in 1146 days

#4 posted 05-21-2015 04:44 PM

Ooh also! By “worth it” I also definitely mean: cleanup / setup.

Is cleanup after you’re finished a pain? Does the head clog? Etc….

View MrUnix's profile


6698 posts in 2193 days

#5 posted 05-21-2015 05:07 PM

A sprayer for interior house jobs, exterior deck/house jobs and small/medium sized woodworking projects will all be different as Willie points out. If you are doing house painting for a living, a large spray system would be a good thing, but not really for the average home owner. A power roller would be a better investment, but I find that a roller, extension pole and a 5 gallon paint bucket grid works just fine. I have a couple rental properties and re-paint the interior whenever a tenant moves out (every couple of years on average). By the time you prep, tape and mask everything for spraying, you could have already had it painted with a roller :)

For smaller jobs, either a brush or HVLP gun is used depending on what is being painted and the finish desired. Those little purple HVLP guns at HF for $10 work fantastic and I’ve sprayed a LOT of oil based enamel, latex and polyurethane using them with excellent results. Your pancake compressor might be a bit small for the gun, but I’m not sure… The HVLP gun claims it needs 6CFM @ 40psi, which might exceed what your compressor can provide… so largish stuff might be kind of hard on it. Even my 30gal compressor needs a rest occasionally to catch up when I’m doing large stuff, but it’s not that big a deal if you aren’t in any real hurry. For $10, it wouldn’t set you back too much to give it a try!


-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2298 posts in 2363 days

#6 posted 05-21-2015 06:20 PM

A power roller would be a better investment,
- MrUnix

I’ve not had any experience spraying the walls of a house, however I’ve painted quite a few rooms with a Wagner Power Roller. It looks like they’re around $125 on Amazon. BORG may carry them as well. My parents bought one probably around 10-15 years ago from Home Depot. Between painting pretty much every room in their house at least once in that time, along with a couple in ours, and being loaned to friends and coworkers, that thing is still kickin’. Easy to use, you just put the gallon can on the stand, put the hose/top on it, and start rolling. There’s a button on the roller handle that lets you pump more paint into the roller. With the extensions, you can roll the whole room without a ladder. Last time I used it, we did a room that was about 16×16, and it went really fast (we still trimmed by hand). We’re going to be repainting our living room/kitchen/hall this year and we’ll be using it. For cleanup, you just wash the rollers off as you would a normal roller, and pump clean water (we never rolled oil-based) through the system from a bucket.

That being said, I recently purchased a Earlex 5500 for spraying my projects, but I’m planning on giving it a go when it comes time to paint all of the base and chair molding for those rooms (molding is all new, so paint, then install).

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Earlextech's profile


1161 posts in 2684 days

#7 posted 05-21-2015 06:27 PM

Since it’s already been said. I’ll add to what BinghamptonEd said, and I’m the spraying guy. The Wagner Smart Sidekick powered roller is the best wall painting tool I’ve used in 35 years of painting. And, they just came out with an HVLP gun attached to it instead of a roller. Called the 990, also a great house painting tool.
For furniture/cabinetry and trim, I also agree with BEd, Earlex sprayers are “worth it”!

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View Planeman40's profile


1175 posts in 2755 days

#8 posted 05-21-2015 07:30 PM

Ditto regarding the ” purple HVLP guns at HF for $10 work fantastic”! I have one and its great! Weather your compressor will run it is another matter. Compare the cubic feet of air (CUF) noted on the spray gun to what is posted on your compressor. The more CUF from the compressor the better, but you will need an air pressure gauge.

And two more things . . .

1. Spray guns must be kept meticulously clean to work properly. Its not very time consuming though. You need to run some thinner through the gun when you are through, then unscrew the spray heads and thoroughly clean them. NEVER put a gun up for any length of time without doing this.

2. You can leave a gun uncleaned with the paint still in it overnight without any problems. I have even done this for a few days. Just thoroughly wipe off the outside of the spray tip before leaving it . What is on the outside of the gun will dry. what is on the inside of the gun will be fine.


-- Always remember: It is a mathematical certainty that half the people in this country are below average in intelligence!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics