Frustrated with how much time and effort it takes to paint… anything? A HVLP spray gun can make your life so much easier, as it allows you to smoothly paint cabinets, other furniture pieces, decks, sidings, and pretty much anything around the house while putting in minimal time and effort.
We’ve ranked the best HVLP spray guns based on quality, price, and features, and here is what you should know.
Top HVLP Spray Guns
TCP Global Professional spray gun – Best budget pick
HomeRight Finish Max Paint Sprayer – Best overall
DeVilBiss STARTINGLINE HVLP Spray Gun – Best for cabinets
Wagner Spraytech 0518080 Control Spray – Most versatile
DEWALT HVLP Spray Gun – Most durable
Graco-Sharpe 288880 HVLP FX3000 Paint Spray Gun – Editor’s choice
What Is an HVLP Spray Gun?
While HVLP spray guns are similar to standard spray guns in that they employ a compressor to propel air through the gun, they spread a greater volume of air at a lower pressure.
Because ordinary spray guns emit sprays at a higher pressure, they are likely to result in significantly more overspray than HVLP systems. Along with wasting product, overspray can result in substandard finish application. HVLP spraying provides a more precise, efficient application and a smoother finish.
When it comes to HVLP spray gun systems, you have two choices:
- Dedicated systems, which are based on turbines to help atomize the finish.
- Conversion systems, capable of moving air from the compressor and changing its pressure level, resulting in spray that’s easier to control.
What to Think About When Buying an HVLP Spray Gun
It’s normal to feel overwhelmed when shopping for a new HVLP spray gun because you want to make sure you’re spending money on a quality product. We’ve put together a list of features to pay attention to before purchasing one.
Compact Spray Guns
This is a category of HVLP spray gun that functions based on an easy-to-understand system. They require a power outlet connection and are designed with an interior pump that uses air to atomize the material you’re spraying. These work best for small areas.
Turbine Spray Guns
This particular type of spray gun uses a separate turbine for its air supply, which makes them more powerful compared to the aforementioned category. This type of spray gun works well for painting sidings, small decks, and even furniture.
Compressor-Driven Spray Guns
This is the most powerful type of HVLP spray gun and one that’s often used in car shops to paint vehicles. Their construction allows for a pretty long lifespan, and they are extremely feasible when it comes to painting large areas. However, it takes longer to learn how to use them.
It’s important to note that spray guns are rarely quiet, but they also don’t make an exaggerated amount of noise. However, if you have sensitive hearing, you might want to consider using earmuffs.
In order to adjust the size of the spray pattern, you need to understand more about pressure control. When using a gun at a higher pressure, more material ends up being atomized, which makes it easier for you to paint large areas.
You also need to keep in mind that if the fluid flow is constant and the pressure is higher, this will result in a thinner paint coat. If you want this to be adjustable, you’re going to need a spray gun that allows you to control the flow.
The fluid nozzle is basically where the paint comes out. It usually comes in the form of a nozzle or an air cap that features a hole where the spray exits the gun. The size of this hole is measured in mm and it’s important for you to know this feature because it will determine what type of materials you can spray with.
It’s not uncommon for people to change the nozzle when switching between projects. Due to the different viscosity of the materials, the thickness of the liquid will change, which means that holes should have different sizes, depending on what you want to spray.
The size of the hole ranges from one to three millimeters. It’s also common to find spray guns that have an all-purpose nozzle, but you might want to look for a product that includes multiple nozzle attachments for more project versatility.
Ease of Cleaning
One of the reasons why people are so skeptical about using spray guns is because they are difficult to clean. They will require some disassembly and you will have to clean the spray gun immediately after you’re done using it.
If you fail to do so, the material inside the spray gun will dry and most likely clog the fluid nozzle. If your spray gun didn’t come with a bristle brush for cleaning, we recommend that you purchase one separately. Cleaning kits for spray guns are easy to find.
The Best HVLP Spray Guns
TCP Global Professional Gravity Feed HVLP Spray Gun – Cheapest HVLP Spray Gun
The TCP Global Professional spray gun is equipped with control knobs that allow for complete customization of pressure, flow, and pattern. It comes with a needle and nozzle set made of stainless steel.
It is designed with a 1.4 mm fluid tip and comes with an aluminum cup that has a one liter capacity, allowing you to work on projects that require light to medium-viscosity materials.
In spite of its low price, this gun has a full baffle head assembly, which allows it to generate a fully atomized and consistent spray pattern, resulting in a smooth and professional finish every time.
- Weight: 2.81 pounds
- Construction: aluminum, stainless steel
- Price range: $50 – $100
HomeRight Finish Max Paint Sprayer HVLP Electric Spray Gun – Best Overall HVLP Spray Gun
Designed for ease of use, the HomeRight Finish Max paint sprayer produces a smooth finish free of brush marks on a variety of surfaces. The settings are easily modifiable and will assist you in finishing a variety of different projects.
You can adjust the air cap so that it sprays horizontally, vertically, or in a circle. You may also alter the material flow control knob to swiftly increase or reduce the amount of material output, which allows you to tailor your paint flow to the specific needs of your project or coating application.
This spray gun is equipped with a 2 mm. precise brass spray tip and nozzle, which outperforms its plastic competitors in terms of performance and durability.
- Weight: 3.1 pounds
- Construction: brass
- Price range: $50 – $100
DeVilBiss STARTINGLINE HVLP Spray Gun for Painting Control – Best HVLP Spray Gun for Cabinets
Painting with a high-quality finish at home has never been easier thanks to the DeVilbiss spray gun, which uses low pressure for material atomization while simultaneously producing high volume and providing superior finish quality for your cabinets.
Because it is made with high-quality technology, it is simple and hassle-free for those who are just getting started with a spray gun. It has a stainless-steel body and a plastic cup but we can’t help but wonder about how it’s labeled as “environment-friendly” since it uses plastic in its construction.
The 1.3 mm gravity feed spray, which promises to produce few concentrated sprays that will cover a vast area while also providing an excellent finish at the end.
- Weight: 2.29 pounds
- Construction: stainless steel body, plastic cup
- Price range: $50 – $100
Wagner Spraytech -Most Versatile HVLP Spray Gun
The Control Spray Max produces a smooth, uniform finish in a fraction of the time it takes to paint using standard methods. Because of the controls, you have the opportunity to change the settings depending on the project you’re working on and the sort of material being utilized.
The spray patterns range in width from 1/2″ to 12”, allowing for the greatest possible control and precision when performing delicate finish work. Package contains a Control Max sprayer, one-quart metal cup, one-half-quart plastic cup, a 20-foot hose, a viscosity cup, and the instruction manual.
- Weight: 11.18 pounds
- Construction: metal, plastic
- Price range: $100 – $150
DEWALT HVLP Spray Gun – Most Durable HVLP Spray Gun
When it comes to spray guns that are likely to last for long, the DWMT70777 by DEWALT is a product worth considering. In terms of design, it sports the basic aesthetics of a spray paint gun, offering a metal body with an aluminum paint cup with a 600cc capacity.
It has a small and lightweight construction, making it easy to maneuver the gun even when you have to paint in smaller spaces. It has a 1.5 mm nozzle with an accurate spray and works at a maximum air pressure of 30 PSI.
- Weight: 1.7 pounds
- Construction: metal
- Price range: $50 – $100
Graco-Sharpe 288880 HVLP FX3000 Paint Spray Gun – Editor’s Choice for Best HVLP Spray Gun
The FX3000 spray gun is a ready-to-use product that’s ready for painting straight out of the box. Regardless of whether you are a novice or an experienced spray painter, the spray gun performs admirably. It has a lightweight construction which makes it easy to maneuver.
Featuring excellent fan control, this tool can spray a wide range of viscosities, from base coats to clear coats, with excellent results. The quality of the spray is excellent. This spray gun would be ideal for both novices and professionals, as it would produce excellent results in both situations.
- Weight: 1.1 pounds
- Construction: metal
- Price range: $100 – $150
How to Use an HVLP Spray Gun for Cabinetry
Painting cabinets is the best way to give your kitchen a fresh look without having to spend a fortune on new furniture. So, if you want to learn how to paint your cabinets using a HVLP spray gun, here’s what you’re going to need:
- HVLP spray gun
Start by cleaning your cabinets. You’ll likely have to sand them, especially if they have a glossy surface. If not, a light sanding should suffice.
Take down the cabinet doors. If you have any drawers, remove those too. You might want to mark them somehow, so you’ll know what goes where when you have to put everything back together.
You’ll need painter’s tape for this step. Tape everything around the cabinets, and we do mean EVERYTHING. Put tape on the side, underneath, where cabinets meet the walls and ceiling, etc. Palace some newspapers and plastic on surfaces around the cabinets to keep them protected.
Choose an area inside the home or in your garage to act as a spray area. Make sure there the space is ventilated because you don’t want to be trapped in an enclosed space with all those paint fumes. This is where you’ll spray your cabinets and allow them to dry.
Before you start using the spray gun, practice on a large piece of cupboard. This is a very important step if you’ve never used a spray gun before or if you just bought a new gun and never got to use it until now.
To paint the cabinet doors, you’ll first have to prime the door’s outside edge using a narrow spray, making sure you’ve covered all the edges. Continue by spraying the center area. Move the painted door to wherever you want to let it dry. Repeat the process for all the doors.
After each coat of primer, you want to apply two coats of paint. Since this is likely going to take you more than a day (because you have to allow the primer and paint to dry between applications), make sure you clean your spray gun at the end of the day.
To paint the cabinet frames, follow all the previous steps that you did when painting the doors.
Put everything back together and behold your freshly-painted cabinets!
Tips to Get That Professional Finish with an HVLP Spray Gun
There are three things that you have to do before you start using a spray sun: adjust the flow, the spray pattern, and prepare the finish:
- To adjust the flow, locate the knob and turn it while pulling the trigger on the spray gun. If you notice drips, you want to decrease the flow.
- To adjust the spray pattern, turn the air cap and test the results. Horizontal sprays are good for vertical surfaces, and vice-versa. Circular patterns are used on most surface types.
- To prepare the finish, consult the spray gun’s manual.
Certain spray guns have a learning curve, especially more professional models. Having a steady hand is something that you might struggle with, but practice always makes perfect.
If you’re worried about not being able to control the spray gun to get a smooth finish, practice on a large piece of cardboard or some other surface that you can afford to mess up. This will allow you to control the gun with higher accuracy.
Wear Safety Gear
Always wear protective equipment when spraying, and that includes gloves, goggles, and a face mask. You do not want to take a chance on being exposed to finishes. Exposure can cause irritation of the skin and eyes in the short term. Long-term exposure can result in even more severe impacts.
Ample Space to Do the Job
As you noticed in the tutorial before, it’s really important that you have enough room around you to perform the task at hand. Working in tight spaces is going to be very uncomfortable.
Allow Proper Dry Time between Coats
Every material that you spray is going to require some time to dry out (that includes primer and paint). Make sure you read the instructions of the material you’re using. Primers usually take 24 hours to dry, while paint requires at least 16 hours between coats. Of course, this also depends on the thickness of the coat.
Question: How much is an HVLP spray gun?
A HVLP spray gun can be as cheap as $20 for the most basic model out there, while professional units that cover large areas can cost more than $1,200. You should be able to buy a really good HVLP spray gun for home-improvement purposes for around $50 to $100.
Question: What is the difference between HVLP and conventional spray guns?
Conventional guns employ high pressure to generate large amounts of paint, with the PSI levels at the inlet and outlet being identical. The lower pressure of the HVLP gun results in less overspray and fewer odds of wasting paint, but also in a smaller paint volume.
Question: How big of an air compressor do I need for a HVLP spray gun?
You’re going to find a lot of advice for this particular question. Generally speaking, a HVLP spray gun requires an air compressor of at least 10 cfm (cubic feet per minute).
Final Words on HVLP Spray Guns
The HomeRight C800766 spray gun takes home the trophy because it gathers everything that we feel is needed from a HVLP spray gun for cabinets. It’s easy to use, has a simple learning curve, has a quality brass tip, is easily adjustable, and doesn’t cost very much. If you’d like more information on painting, check out our guide to the best paint sprayer for kitchen cabinets.