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Best Paint Sprayers for the Money 2020 – Top Picks & Reviews

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paint spraying like a bossHiring professionals to help you with your painting is an expensive and downright annoying proposition. If you are willing to invest some time in learning to use a paint sprayer, you can just go ahead and complete your project yourself. On the other hand as a professional, you can also make your job a lot easier. The hardest obstacle to get over is buying the right sprayer.

What makes a sprayer good? What makes a sprayer bad? What are the core conditions a sprayer must satisfy, and where can you make compromises if need ve? These are just a few questions a prospective buyer has. Finding the answers to these questions takes a lot of time and effort and we did just that!

To save you the trouble, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to buying a paint sprayer. If you know your way around a sprayer, you can choose the right sprayer after reading the paint sprayer reviews. However, if you want to know more about the meaning and significance of the parameters, such as flow rate, pressure control, volume control, and spray pattern, read the buying guide to help you make your decision as well.

Our Favorite Models Compared:

Graco Magnum 262800 X5
Graco Magnum 262800 X5 Stand Airless Paint Sprayer
Top Pick

Check Price
1 year4.9/5
Wagner 0518050
Wagner 0518050 Control Spray

Check Price
1 year4.7/5
Wagner 0518080
Wagner 0518080 Control Spray

Check Price
1 year4.7/5
HomeRight C800766
HomeRight C800766
Best Budget Buy

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2 years4.6/5
Wagner 0529021
Wagner 0529021 Flexio 890

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1 year4.1/5

5 Best Paint Sprayers – Reviews 2020:

1. Graco Magnum 262800 X5 Paint Sprayer – Top Pick

Graco Magnum 262800

Starting our reviews with a bang is the Graco Magnum X5, the best handheld paint sprayer on the market. It’s the largest, heaviest, and the most expensive paint sprayer on our list. But, it’s also the most powerful. Producing an outstanding flow rate of 0.24 gallons per min, this sprayer is best suited for situations where speed, as well as quality counts.

The X5 comes with a 0.015-inch spray tip that produces a 10-inch fan. As for the pressure, well you can vary it anywhere between 0 to 3000 psi. The pressure control is infinite, meaning that you can set the pressure anywhere within the pressure range instead of at pre-set points. So, it’s no surprise then that this is one of the best airless paint sprayers out there.

The default 0.015 spray tip works for enamels, primers, interior paints, and exterior paints, making this the best paint sprayer for exterior and interior walls. However, if you want to spray stains, you’ll need a smaller tip, which you must buy separately. The X5 is compatible with tips between 0.011 and 0.021 inches in diameter. Consequently, you can get a fan width ranging from 6 to 12 inches depending on the tip.

On the downside, the sprayer comes with only a 1-year warranty. For a machine this expensive, a longer warranty would really have been preferable.

  • Powerful
  • Infinite pressure control up to 3000 psi
  • Large fan width
  • Large
  • Heavy
  • Poor warranty

2. Wagner 0518050 Paint SprayerWagner Spraytech 0518050

Now, if you’re looking for the best paint sprayer for home use including furniture and cabinets, the Wagner Control Spray Double Duty is the product for you. This HVLP sprayer is cheap, compact, and light. However, at 0.08 gallons per minute, this product has the lowest flow rate among the products in our list. But, for a home user, who have less experience with paint sprayers, the low flow rate is a good thing.

You can use this machine to spray oil enamels, oil-based primers, oil stains, clear sealers, polyurethane, and varnish. While painting, you can choose one of three spray patterns – horizontal, vertical, and round. There’s no provision to change the tip size or spray pressure, unfortunately. But, you can change the spray volume which is a good thing.

The Wagner 0518050 Control Spray is 75 percent cheaper than the Graco Magnum X5. But, the warranty on both machines extends for 1-year. A 1-year warranty on a product this economical is a real steal when compared to the same warranty on a much more expensive product.

  • Cheap
  • Light
  • 3 spray patterns
  • HVLP
  • Volume control
  • Good warranty
  • Low flow rate
  • Not suitable for latex paints

3. Wagner 0518080 HVLP Spray GunWagner Spraytech 0518080

If you’re prepared to stretch your budget to around hundred dollars, you can buy the Wagner Control Spray Max. This is the best HVLP sprayer in the market. With a flow rate of 0.1 gallons per minute, this paint sprayer performs 25 percent better than the Control Spray Double Duty.

It also increases the scope of materials you can spray. Like the Double Duty model, the Max model can spray oil enamels, oil-based primers, oil stains, clear sealers, polyurethane, and varnish. But, this sprayer can also spray lacquer, automotive finishes, and latex paint.

The Max model also offers better control. There’s a pressure control dial, a material flow regulator, and a spray pattern selector. Since there are so many variables you can manipulate, I recommend that you practice before spraying the actual workpiece.

The Max model comes with a 1-year warranty. But, a 1-year warranty is what I would expect from a product in this price range. Overall, you should buy the Max model if you plan to spray lacquer and latex paint. Otherwise, the Double Duty model will serve you just fine.

  • Economical
  • Moderate weight
  • Moderate size
  • Good warranty
  • Works with lacquer and latex paint
  • Pressure selector, volume selector, and spray pattern selector
  • Low flow rate

4. HomeRight C800766 Paint Sprayer – Best Budget Buy

HomeRight C800766

We’ve already covered a light, compact, and cheap sprayer. Now, it’s time to talk about a model that’s super light, super compact, and super cheap. Say hello to the HomeRight Finish Max Fine Finish HVLP sprayer. Surprisingly, despite its size and price, this model offers a higher flow rate than the Wagner Control Spray Max.

You can use this sprayer to spray clear sealers, enamels, polyurethane paints, primers, stains, varnishes, and latex paints. Although the model has flow control and spray pattern control, it does not offer pressure control.

Since the model does not have pressure control, the spray quality will vary as you change the substance you’re spraying. So, before you spray your workpiece, do a few trials on a mock piece.
Perhaps the best thing about this product is its warranty. Think about this. The Finish Max is the cheapest product on the list. At the same time, it offers a solid 2-year warranty. For this reason, the C800766 is the best paint sprayer for the money on the market.

  • Good flow rate
  • Very cheap
  • Very light and compact
  • Works with most kind of materials
  • Flow control and spray pattern control
  • Excellent warranty
  • No pressure control

5. Wagner 0529021 Flexio 890 Paint Sprayer

Wagner 0529021

Since our top pick is quite expensive, we wanted you to have another choice when it comes to high-performance sprayers. That’s why the Wagner Felxio 890 is on this list. It’s flow rate of 0.14 gallons per minute cannot compete with the X5’s massive flow rate of 0.24 gallons per minute. However, the Flexio 890 does compare favorably across all the other main paramenters.

For instance, you can use this sprayer to spray transparent stains, semi-transparent stains, sealers, lacquers, solid stains, polyurethane paints, oil enamels, latex paints, and primers. Next, it offers three spray patterns – horizontal, vertical, and round. In addition to these patterns, it also offers a wide and narrow spray pattern.

The Flexio 890 comes with two nozzles. The first nozzle, called the Detail Finish Nozzle, is used for spraying small projects with fine finishing. The second nozzle, called the iSpray Nozzle, is used for spraying large surfaces and thicker materials.

It has an X-Boost Power Dial for pressure control and a material flow control knob. Like all other Wagner sprayers on our list, this one also comes with a 1-year warranty. In a nutshell, the Flexio 890 offers everything you need except for high flow rate.

  • Moderate flow rate
  • Moderate cost
  • Works with wide range of material
  • 5 spray pattern controls
  • Pressure control
  • Flow rate control
  • Large size
  • Heavy
  • Mediocre warranty

Factors To Consider When Buying

We talked about the difficult questions a prospective customer must answer to find the right paint sprayer. In this part of the guide, I’ll take you through most of the frequently asked questions, along with their answers. You must understand, the buying process happens in two stages – elimination and selection.

In the elimination stage, you must look for reasons to not buy a product. After this stage, you get a list of eligible products to choose from. Once you have a manageable list of products, you must go through each product and identify the reasons for buying the product. In the end, products with the most number of desirable qualities win.

Sounds sensible. But, what criteria must I use for elimination?

Elimination criteria is a list of qualities that your product must have. Although this list varies from person to person, here are some ideas for potential criteria for elimination:

  • Price Limit: Think about how much money you’re willing to spend on buying a paint sprayer. Then, double the value. This new value is your upper limit. Any product that costs more than twice your upper limit must be eliminated.
  • Origin: Some people prefer buying machines made in USA (or the EU, or Canada… and so on) to buying machines made overseas. Remember, usually, products made overseas offer better features at a cheaper price. If you’re fine with paying extra for products made in USA, eliminate the ones made overseas.
  • Customer Reviews: Eliminate products that have too few reviews. Go by the numbers, not the percentage. Scan the reviews to see whether they’re authentic. If you see a lot of reviews clustered tightly, they’re probably fake. In the reviews, look for information not available in the product description. Also, look for photographs. And, treat the critical reviews fairly. For instance, if the customer gave the company 1 star for sending a defective product, check other reviews to see how promptly the company responds to such situations. If the company handles the situation professionally, someone will talk about it.
  • Application: If you’re certain what material you’re going to spray, you can eliminate any paint sprayer that isn’t compatible. For example, if you want to spray latex paint, eliminate all products that don’t work with latex paints. You can get this information from the product manual.

Next, let’s talk about a few criteria for selection. Note that if you’ve used a paint sprayer before, you can use the selection criteria for eliminating products. For instance, if you know the ideal flow rate you’re looking for, eliminate products that don’t conform to your standards.

Okay, so what are the selection criteria I can use?

Once you have a manageable list of prospective products, you can compare these products and see how they fair against each other. Some factors you can compare are as follows:

  • Flow Rate: This value determines how many gallons of paint the sprayer dispenses in a minute. High flow rate reduces the time taken to complete the paint job. At the same time, working with machines that have high flow rate are harder to master. Think about it this way, even if your motorbike can run at 100 miles per hour, the top speed is no good unless you have the skills to control the bike at that speed. For beginners, a flow rate of 0.075 gallons per minute is good enough.
  • Flow Rate Control: Flow rate control allows you to adjust the amount of paint the sprayer dispenses. This is important if you’re working with different types of paints. If you’re working with just one type of paint, flow rate control isn’t that important.
  • Pressure Control: Here’s an analogy that explains how pressure works. If you apply a lot of pressure while writing with a pencil, the letters are dark. However, if you apply gentle pressure while writing, the letters are light. A paint sprayer’s pressure setting works the same way. Another reason for having pressure control is when you’re working with thin materials and thick materials. Thick materials require more pressure than thin materials do. So, having a pressure control knob helps regulate the amount of pressure depending on the material.
  • Spray Pattern Control: Typically, sprayers offer horizontal, vertical, and cone spray patterns. In addition to this, some machines offer wide and narrow spray patterns. Spray patterns grant better flexibility and reduce wastage. But, if you’re not going to spray paint anything but flat and regular surfaces, spray patterns aren’t important.
  • Material: In the product manual, you can find the list of materials the sprayer can dispense. Even if a sprayer meets your current needs, you must factor future use. For instance, right now you may need a sprayer that sprays varnish, but in future, you may need a sprayer that sprays latex. So, buying a machine that does both makes sense.
  • Physical Dimensions: Size and weight are important parameters when it comes to paint sprayers. Avoid machines that are too heavy. To get an idea regarding weight, fill a 16-ounce bottle with water. This represents approximately 1 pound. Now, if you fill a 32-ounce bottle with water, it weighs approximately 2 pounds. Using this, you can easily gauge the weight of the product. If two machines perform nearly the same, choose the one that weighs less.
  • Warranty: Warranty reflects the manufacturer’s confidence in its product. When a manufacturer offers a 1-year warranty, it’s essentially saying, “We promise you that you will have no issues resulting from workmanship and material defects for 1-year.” Longer the warranty, higher the manufacturer’s confidence.

This is an exhaustive list of considerations that go into buying a paint sprayer. But, it’s by no means a complete list. So, feel free to add any criterion that you think is important. For instance, length of the hose, length of the cord, brand value, customer support, manual’s thoroughness, instruction videos, safety, accessories, and discount.

Okay, I’m excited to buy a paint sprayer. What are my options?

The products in the review section cater to the most common customer profiles. Whether you’re looking for a high-performance premium brand or a budget-friendly product, the review section has you covered. However, if you want to use the information in the buying guide to do your own research, we recommend that you check out products from Graco, HomeRight, and Wagner.

Final Verdict

Before we conclude this article, let’s revisit important information in this article. Our top pick, the Graco Magnum X5, is the best paint sprayer you can buy if you have the budget for it. But, it may be a little too much for the typical home user. For home users, we recommend the Wagner Control Spray Max or the Wagner Control Spray Double Duty.

But, if you need something more powerful than these two models, you can go for the Wagner Flexio 890. However, the best paint sprayer in terms of value for money is the HomeRight C800766. It’s also the bestselling paint sprayer on Amazon.

People have been using paint sprayers since the 1880s. But, until recent times, their use was restricted to industrial settings. Today, paint sprayers have developed so much that it is no longer limited to industries. For the first time, home users have access to a wide variety of paint sprayers.

Although it’s always good to have options, the sheer volume of choices may paralyze you into inaction. But, with the right information and guidance, you can find the right product for you with ease. There are a lot of products at different price points. Hopefully, this guide will help you make sense of it all and let you buy a paint sprayer with confidence.

Also, here’s a great article showing different types of projects you can use a paint sprayer for.

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About the Author Adam Harris

Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!