How To Clean A Paint Sprayer

Whether you’re a new homeowner or a DIY enthusiast, we’re sure that you’ll know all about the benefits of introducing a paint sprayer to your tool collection.

Armed with one, not only will it offer the ability to turn a 3-day paint job into an afternoon’s work, but it will also ensure that you can wave goodbye to arm ache for good, and who wouldn’t want that?

How To Clean A Paint Sprayer

However, even though paint sprayers ensure that the job is done quicker than the traditional way, it does come at the cost of extra cleaning and general upkeep.

If you don’t ensure that you thoroughly clean your paint sprayer after each use, you’ll run the risk of not only affecting the performance but also reducing its lifespan, meaning that you’ll have to purchase a replacement.

Never fear, though, because we’re here to help you!

If you’re currently planning a paint job and have been wondering about ways that you can clean your paint sprayer, then this guide will provide you with all the information you need to be able to do it.

We’ve even included a step-by-step cleaning walkthrough for you to follow along with.

Read on!

The Preparation:

Picture this: you’ve finally finished painting your living room after spending the past two hours making sure that each wall is perfectly covered.

Amidst the relief of being able to finally put your feet up and the proudness of admiring your beautiful paint job, you’re suddenly hit with the realization that you now need to clean your sprayer.

What do you do? Well, to ensure that you’re able to properly clean it so that it gets returned to its original state, you’ll first need to carry out a few preparatory steps. Let’s check them out:

Take it Apart

Now, even though there’s plenty of different types of paint sprayers on the market, the good news is that they all usually have a similar design.

Thanks to that, it means that every paint sprayer will have similar parts, as well as design structure, so this step should be easy for you to carry out.

When it comes to cleaning your sprayer, the first thing to do is to take apart each component, so that you are better able to clean every part of it.

If you don’t do that, you’re not going to be able to reach every crevice, meaning that even after cleaning it, there were still be paint and debris inside it.

Generally speaking, a paint sprayer will have three main components that will be detachable: the nozzle, the gun, and the main part of the sprayer.

Before you begin cleaning, you’re going to need to make sure that you properly remove these three parts, so that you can clean all of them properly. This brings us to the next preparation step!

Choose The Right Cleaner

So, after you’ve taken apart your sprayer and you’re ready to begin cleaning, there’s just one thing left to do – make sure that you’re using the right cleaner.

It’s very important that you get this step right because if you use the wrong cleaning mix it could cause the sprayer to become damaged.

There are two types of paint remover for you to choose from: paint thinner and water-based paint remover.

To make sure that you never make a mistake, you should only ever use water-based cleaners for latex paint, and paint thinner for oil-based paints.

Step-by-Step Guide:

1. Prepare your Buckets

Regardless of whether you’re using oil or water-based paints, you’re going to need two buckets in order to be able to properly clean your sprayer.

This is because you’ll need one bucket to be able to fill it up with the chosen cleaner you are using (depending on the paint), and the other to be able to empty the paint and dirty cleaner into so that you don’t make a mess.

2. Clean the Filters

With your buckets set up and ready to go, you’re now ready to begin cleaning each part of your sprayer.

Depending on your model, you’ll likely find that your sprayer has either 2 or 3 filters, the suction filter, the manifold filter, and the pencil gun filter.

To clean them, all you will need to do is put a pair of durable gloves on and place them inside the bucket filled with cleaner, making sure to only place the filters into the bucket.

After you can visibly see that the paint has been lifted, you can then pick each filter up and wipe away any remaining dirt and paint.

3. Clean the Nozzles and Spray Gun

The next step is to clean the nozzles, which many find to be the most difficult part of cleaning their sprayer.

The easiest way to do this is to take a small tool, such as a toothbrush) or even some pipe cleaners, as these will be able to fit inside the nozzles to extract any paint.

Loosen up the paint inside the nozzles by submerging them in water for a minute, and then take them out and begin scrubbing them with your chosen cleaning tool.

As soon as you can see light through the nozzle, it means that the nozzles have been properly cleaned.

Next, you’ll need to clean the spray gun. After you have removed the spray guard, all you’ll need to do is tilt the gun upside down under a tap while holding the trigger down, allowing the flowing water to run through both the filter section and the spray section.

Keep doing this for a minute or so, or until you notice that the flowing water is running clear.

4. Allow to Dry

Now that you’ve finished cleaning and all the parts of your paint sprayer are completely clean, now it’s time to dry them. Though you can leave it to dry naturally, we recommend taking an old, clean cloth and hand drying each part.

After you have completed this step, you can then go ahead and pop your paint sprayer back into storage, ready for the next time you would like to use it.

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