How to Use a Paint Sprayer with an Air Compressor

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Using a paint sprayer with an air compressor is often a fairly basic component of most do it yourself paint jobs. However, just because something is basic doesn’t mean that understanding it is self-apparent.

Learning how to use a paint sprayer with an air compressor is easy, but it can help to have someone willing to walk you through the process. That is where we come in.

We know all about painting with sprayers, and we would love nothing more than to help you use them.

Read on for a guide on how to use a paint sprayer with an air compressor.

Step 1: Prep the Paint Area:

Before you even think about your sprayer, you are going to want to think about the paint area. Painting of every variety usually yields a mess. If you want to avoid catastrophe, don’t forget to set out painting canvas sheets around the floor area, and tape off sensitive areas that you don’t want exposed to the sprayer.

Step 2: Thin Your Paint:

Sprayers are very vulnerable to poorly thinned paint. The art of paint thinning is its own tutorial but often it can be as simple as adding a fourth a cup of water for ever gallon of paint used.

The good news is that paint manufacturers usually include instructions on the can pertaining to how the paint should be thinned.

Step 3: Hook Everything Up:

It’s time to get everything settled in. Hook the hoses and tubes into their appropriate ports, and then make sure that the sprayer is plugged into an outlet.

Once everything is plugged in the right way, the system will be mostly up and running.

Step 4: Turn on the Gun:

Now that everything is properly attached you can feel free to turn on the sprayer. At this point, you are going to want to adjust the PSI level to the setting that is appropriate for whatever job you are trying to accomplish.

Deciding on a pressure setting may be a little bit daunting at first, but our guess is that it will quickly become easily intuited.

In the meantime, feel free to test the sprayer on a disposable sheet of paper as you try to determine optimal pressure levels.

Step 5: Paint:

Now it is time to paint. With everything properly hooked up, the air compressor and the sprayer will do most of the work for you.

Using a paint sprayer is actually pretty simple. Just remember to keep the nozzle at least six to twelve inches away from the surface that you are painting, and maintain a fluid, up and down or sideways motion while you paint.


See? It really isn’t too much of a challenge, is it? Using a paint sprayer with an air compressor may at first seem a little bit daunting, but the truth is that it’s much simpler than it first appears.

Our guess is that using your air compressor paint sprayer will quickly become second nature to you. However, if you ever find yourself struggling, feel free to check back in with us, and re-consult this guide.

In the meantime, enjoy your sprayer! Happy painting!