Airless paint sprayers, as the name implies, work by delivering paint on desired surfaces through a mechanism of high pressure, instead of using air motion.
By going through this process, airless paint sprayers can perform at a level that very few applicators can.
Sadly, however, there are also some drawbacks to making use of them.
As such, we’re going to be taking a closer look at some of the numerous advantages that you can benefit from making use of an airless paint sprayer, as well as some undeniable disadvantages, and available alternatives.
General Advantages of Airless Paint Sprayers
First, let’s take a look at the general advantages of airless paint sprayers, which are the benefits that can be discussed objectively without doing a comparison with any other tools.
Regardless of what you compare it too, painting with an airless paint sprayer is without a doubt the fastest method of paint application out there. You might take a while to prime it, but once that’s out of the way, it’s smooth sailing from there.
Airless paint sprayers give one of the smoothest finishes you’ll ever see on a paint. And what’s more, once you get the hang of it, establish a uniform pattern and follow the rules, this is pretty much guaranteed every single time.
In terms of effectiveness, very few tools compare to an airless paint sprayer. This tool makes it child’s play to apply even the most difficult types of paint, and does it neat enough to satisfy even the most hardened aesthete.
4. Ease of Use
You might take a while to get used to painting with an airless paint sprayer, no doubt about it.
After some trial and error, you start to develop proficiency, and from there it’s just basically a walk in the park. You follow the rules and spray, and the device does the bulky work.
Special Advantages of Airless Paint Sprayers
Let’s take a look below at some of the advantages of using an airless paint sprayer compared to other common paint applicator tools and equipment.
We’ll begin by examining its benefits over air paint sprayers, then against HVLPs, and finally against brushes and rollers.
Airless Paint Sprayers vs. Air Paint Sprayers/HVLP
The main difference between air paint sprayers (HVLP) and airless paint sprayers is the fact that the former makes use of air to deliver the paint content, while the latter makes use of a high-pressure system.
As such, airless paint sprayers tend to be more portable, thanks to the fact that there isn’t a need to connect the device to an air compressor.
Also, they finish the job in a much smoother way, thanks to the fact that when using it, paint particles do not mix with air.
Airless paint sprayers retain their advantage of being faster too, so if you’re involved in a large project, airless paint sprayers remain the best tools for that job.
*You can read more about the differences and similarities between airless paint sprayers and HVLP paint sprayers right here.
Airless Paint Sprayers Vs Rollers and Brushes
Relative to rollers and brushes, the efficiency of the airless paint sprayer is undeniable, being on average four times faster than rolling, and ten times faster than brushing.
Apart from speed, airless paint sprayers give a smoother, and a more professional result than any roller or brush.
General Shortcomings of Airless Paint Sprayers
To balance a bit their supremacy, we have listed below some of the few general shortcomings of airless paint sprayers.
1. Prep Time
For many, the prep time that an airless paint sprayer needs, is just too tiresome.
This is somehow true for tasks that don’t take a lot of time or energy in the first place, but for intensive tasks, the prep time is nothing compared to the energy and time that will be saved in the long run.
2. Paint wastage
Another shortcoming of the airless paint sprayer is the fact that paint particles tend to be lost in the process.
With an airless air sprayer, you’ll need about forty percent extra paint more than what you would have needed using a roller or a brush.
Maintenance practices for an airless paint sprayer can get just as tedious as the prep time.
The maintenance must also be done pretty frequently, to ensure proper functioning and longevity of the device.
This may may sound like a lot of work for people looking to just get a job done without caring about the results, but you’re not one of them. Right?
Relative Shortcomings of Airless Paint Sprayers
We have listed below some of the shortcomings found in using airless paint sprayers relative to other common methods of paint application.
Airless Paint Sprayers Versus Air Paint Sprayers/HVLP
Air paint sprayers (HVLPs) are typically less expensive than their airless counterparts, thanks to the slight superiority of the latter.
Apart from price, however, there’s also the fact that air paint sprayers do not have as much complicated work as an airless paint sprayer, and as such, are relatively easier to use.
Airless sprayers are superior in terms of elegance of the final paint job, but HVLP sprayers take the crown when it comes to efficiency and transfer rate, thanks to their 80%-90% transfer rate compared to the 60% – 70% of the airless paint sprayers.
This means that with HVLPs, you don’t have to go through the extensive measures of picking-up untargeted paint.
Airless Paint Sprayers vs. Rollers and Brushes
Obviously, airless paint sprayers are more expensive than their more-traditional counterparts, but this probably does not come as a shock at all.
On a general note, airless paint sprayers possess numerous advantages that make them highly preferable compared to other available options.
Just by mentioning their high speed and wide coverage alone, makes them suitable for a large array of tasks where using another device just wouldn’t do the job properly.
They do have some minor disadvantages in certain areas though. As highlighted above, there are a few cases that using a simple roller, or an HVLP sprayer would be a more reasonable decision – such as for tasks that are not too cumbersome.
All in all, the airless paint sprayer remains a favorite tool for many painters thanks to its speed and smoothness, and will probably remain so for a long while to come.
Below is a summary of all the pros and cons of the airless paint sprayers.
|✓ Speed||✗ Prep time|
|✓ Smoothness||✗ Paint Wastage|
|✓ Effectiveness||✗ Maintenance|
|✓ Ease of Use|