How To Use HVLP Spray Guns – From Setup To Clean Up

Knowing how to use HVLP spray gun models and clean them when you are done using them is important. These tools need the proper care to operate as they were designed to, and you need to be aware of the best practices for using them.

Knowing what an HVLP spray gun is and how it works can significantly improve the results of the work that you do with it. 

This is a straightforward kind of spray gun to set up, use, and maintain. You will have a few challenges when you pick this spray gun model, no matter who makes it.

You will love that you can use and care for this gun so readily since you are not making money while you are doing clean-up processes or dealing with issues with your machine. 

woman holding gold and steel cup

Setting Up

You will need to add your product of choice to the hopper, and then you will want to attach your spray gun of choice to the hopper. You will need to make sure that your product has been prepared correctly before you add it to the hopper for the best results.

Since these guns are gravity fed, preparing this way will help the gun thin down and spray the product evenly. 

Make sure that you connect the air hoses correctly per your instruction manual. You will then want to check that the spray pattern is right for your needs. You might need to switch to a bigger tip if there are issues with the spray not being thin enough. This can be common with viscous paints or primer products. 

Make sure that you use the adjustment wheel to angle the spray width correctly and provide the right coverage for your needs.

You will also want to be sure that you have not used too much product in the hopper to allow you to keep your hand steady. This can impact your overall painting results, so be realistic here with a weight you are comfortable holding. 

Adjusting The HVLP Spray Gun

These guns are meant to be adjusted through two means. You can change the angle and pattern of the spray that you are applying to surfaces by turning the wheel adjustment that is usually at the back of the gun.

You can also change out the tip to make spraying more reliable with thicker paints and varnishes or sealants. Be sure that you have various size tips available for this reason. You will experience clogs and other issues if you try to force your spray gun to work with the wrong size tip in place. 

Spraying 

When you need to spray on varnishes and thick paints with this spray gun, you will need to be sure that you are using the right tip and that you have the correct spray pattern in place. This might take some trial and error if you have not used a product before, but it is usually really simple to sort out what is needed to get the right spray pattern. 

Always start out with the spray needle wide open so that you do not clog the gun right away. You will then want to do some test sprays and see if your airflow, your nozzle size, and the flow pattern are correct. It is easy to make adjustments after your test sprays so that you will get the right flow of product. 

Once you have the product flowing correctly, you will need to spray with even pressure and even strokes to prevent streaking and other issues. Move quickly enough that you are not spraying too long in any one spot. This is easy to do when you are using either the hopper-fed or siphon-fed models of this gun since the handsets are quite light. 

Cleaning Up 

To thoroughly clean your HVLP spray gun, you will need to remove the hopper and rinse it out with water or a solvent. You can then add water to the hopper and attach the spray gun again. Rinse all this water through the spray gun by operating it just as you did when you had paint in it. 

Once the water is running clear, you will need to put some solvent into a small bucket and disassemble all the parts of your handset. Set the filter to the side because it is already clean. You will need to use a toothbrush or a rag to clean off the small parts that go inside the handset and remove paint from them. 

After this process is done, you can reassemble the spray gun and reattach it to the cleaned hopper. Your spray gun will be ready for the next time that you need it. 


How To Determine The Correct Tip Size For HVLP Spray Guns

You need to be sure that you use the correct size tip for your paint spraying needs. It can ruin or clog your gun to use the wrong tip, and you might experience runs in your paint as well as overspray and other issues if you are using the wrong size tip for the job at hand.

This is a critical part of getting good results from this style gun, no matter if you are using a hopper-fed model or a siphon-fed style gun. 

Tip Sizes 

Common Uses 

0.8 

Very fine mist- PVA use 

1.2 

Most paint types 

1.4 

All-around use for single-stage paints 

1.6 

General-purpose paints for light or heavy viscosity 

1.8 

Priming products 

2.2-2.5 

Gel coats or thick resins 

Different Uses For HVLP Spray Guns 

This is a type of spray gun that offers reliable results with ease, and you will get the maximum paint coverage you want with each sweep of the handset. HVLP are better quality compared to most LVLP guns, and you will be able to use it for many jobs and tasks. 

Automotive

This is a really ideal spray gun for automotive painting because you can control the spray width, and you will get a no-drip finish from your efforts. In addition, these spray guns will let you apply primer, clear coats, and paint, and you will be able to reach all the tough to paint areas with ease with this style of spray gun. 

Marine

Varnishes are no trouble for HVLP spray guns which makes them an excellent fit for your needs if you want to be able to spray varnish onto your boat or other marine items. You will be able to prevent overspray that can cause running in varnish applications, and you will not have to deal with clogs or problems with your application being slowed down in any way. 

Architectural Coating

Architectural painting of all kinds is easy with this kind of spray gun. You will be able to prevent overspray, which is great when you are working outdoors where wind and other conditions can cause this problem. You will also be able to spray all kinds of different coatings with ease and find good results when you use an HVLP spray gun. 

Furniture Finishing

When you are applying varnishes and protective coatings to furniture, you need to be sure that your application will work perfectly and that you will get great coverage for your efforts. There are often small spaces that need to be covered in these kinds of uses, and you will be able to take care of this demand with ease with an HVLP sprayer on your side. 

How To Use HVLP Spray Gun

HVLP Spray Gun FAQs

Do you need to thin the paint for an HVLP spray gun? 

Quality latex paints can require thinning down to be sprayed on as a spray finish. The paint itself should show you this information on the can. You can also experiment with some test sprays if you are unsure what the dilution rate should be. Other products do not usually require this treatment. 


What pressure should I set my HVLP spray gun at? 

25-30 PSI is a good rule of thumb for this style of spray gun. You will want to consider lower pressure for some products, but overall, you will want to have enough air pressure to create a good even spray that is fine and light. 


Can you paint a house with an HVLP spray gun? 

This is a really effective choice for house painting, but it is not usually powerful enough for large commercial jobs. You should have no trouble painting a house with an HVLP spray gun from start to finish. 


Why is my HVLP spray gun spitting? 

This is usually due to the paint gun nozzle not being screwed into place. You might also not have the right size nozzle attached for the product that you are trying to spray on. You can always check that your nozzle is working as well since sometimes they become clogged and need to be cleaned. 


Summary

An HVLP spray gun is an excellent tool for all kinds of painting processes. These are reliable spray guns that are easy to use, and that can handle jobs both big and small.

Knowing how to care for this kind of spray gun will make your overall use of it much more effective and straightforward. 

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