How To Use A Paint Sprayer Connected To An Air Compressor

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Using an air compressor for spray-painting allows for easy, seamless application

While evading pollution from aerosol propellants, the use of an air compressor can help to save both money and time. However, before you start painting with a compressed-air sprayer, there are certain things you must know. Here are some important tips that could serve as a guide.

How To Use A Paint Sprayer Connected To An Air Compressor

  1. Get Organized
  2. Before you can undertake the task of spraying, check the compression chamber for air. Also, there is need to set up the air compressor system, the sprayer, and the material. All these must be prepared in compliance with the manufacturer’s guidelines. Do well to clean and load the sprayer properly, set the compressor at the correct pressure and adjust the airflow and fan pattern. Most importantly, check for compressed air.

  3. Prepare the Project Surface
  4. Before painting, there is need to prepare the area where the painting will take place. This can be done by setting your paint and thinner on a suitable surface to avoid spills. The ground floor or any furniture around should be covered with a drop cloth, scrap lumber or sheet plastic. While ensuring that there is adequate ventilation, there is need to protect adjacent surfaces from overspray with newspapers or painter’s paper and painter’s tape or masking.

  5. Take the Proper Safety Precautions
  6. Before setting out to prepare the surface to be painted, do ensure to protect yourself from particulates and dangerous fumes by wearing a respirator or mask, gloves, and safety glasses. Before painting using a compressor, you must ensure that the surface is oil-free, dry and free from rust and corrosion which can be done by grinding, brushing and sanding. Wash the surface to remove all dirt, dust, and oil. Use mineral spirits to clean surfaces prepared for oil-based paints and use soap and water for latex and acrylic paints. Ensure to rinse thoroughly. This is a great way to ensure an oil-free surface.

  7. Select and Thin Your Paint
  8. One of the most frequently used paints with a compressed air sprayer is oil based enamels, however, acrylics and latex can also be used. Ensure to mix enough paint for your project. Get a separate, clean container to collect enough paint that will do the job after mixing it thoroughly. To allow for an easy flow of a more viscous material through the siphon tube and nozzle, add a suitable thinner. For good flow, thin the paint by about 15 to 20%.

  9. Practice Your Technique
  10. After filling the cup with the mixed and thinned paint ensure to attach it securely to the paint sprayer so as to avoid sudden drop off of the spray cup while in use. If this is your first time to handle this type of applicator, it is recommended to practice with the paint sprayer by moving your hand in an up-and-down or side-to-side sweeping motion to get a feel of the weight and balance.

  11. Paint the Project Surface
  12. Check the compression chamber for air before you start squeezing the trigger to spray the paint and ensure that the nozzle of the paint sprayer is not more or less directly on the surface instead hold the sprayer about 5”-10” away from the surface. Avoid drips and runs on the surface by keeping the sprayer moving whenever the trigger is squeezed.

    Avoid leaving thin spots in your paint job by overlapping each pass slightly. Until the project is done, you will need to refill the paint cup at intervals as required. By allowing the paint to dry, you will know if a recoat is necessary for a more durable finish.


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