What is the Difference between an airless sprayer and an HVLP sprayer

When deciding between an airless sprayer and an HVLP sprayer you first must understand the difference between both. With an airless sprayer the piston pressurizes the material forcing is through a small hole in the spray gun. This pressure makes the paint come out at a high speed producing more material to be sprayed in a short amount of time. With an HVLP sprayer the the material is sprayed using air assistance being pumped through with a compressor. The transfer rate of paint being used with an airless sprayer is about 50-60 percent. This means that a lot of material is being wasted with overspray. With an HVLP sprayer the transfer rate is about 80-90 percent. The reason the airless sprayer has such a low transfer rate as compared to an HVLP sprayer is because the paint is leaving the sprayer at roughly 2000 psi where an HVLP sprayer has a psi of 10-25. For this reason airless sprayers are best used for larger projects such as the exterior of a home or a substantial amount of interior trim. HVLP sprayers should be used for smaller more delicate projects like spraying cabinets or small amounts of trim. When it comes to the density of the material being sprayed, airless sprayers can move thicker material than an HVLP sprayer. The reasoning for this is because airless sprayers use significantly more psi than HVLP sprayers do. One way to remember the difference between airless sprayers and HVLP sprayers is to think of an airless sprayer as an extension to a roller and an HVLP sprayer as an extension to a paint brush. It is recommended that any professional should have both pieces of equipment as they compliment each other.


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