All paint sprayers reach a point of spitting, splattering, or sputtering with regular use. The troubleshooting guide that follows will lead you through maintenance practices, consumable part replacement, and tuning of the sprayer system.
Reversible Spray Tip is in UNCLOG Position
Rotate the handle on the spray tip so it points forward in the SPRAY position.
Nozzle is Loose, Worn, Missing a Seal, or Clogged
A fluttering occurs when the nozzle is not tight enough. Inspect the nozzle for looseness or stripping of the nozzle threads before tightening.
A clogged nozzle will produce an undesirable spray pattern. Clean and replace the nozzle and other damaged seals or o-rings.
Spray Tip is Worn
All tips eventually wear out, with more abrasive materials wearing out tips faster. A tip using Latex may last for 40-50 gallons, while tips with stains will last longer. When you hear hissing as the tip becomes worn and notice the oval spray pattern forming into a circle, it's time to replace the spray tip.
Pressure is Too High
To maximize tip life, spray at the lowest pressure that atomizes paint, slowly increasing until you have a good spray pattern, without tails. If the maximum pressure isn't enough for a good spray pattern, then the tip is too worn.
Different types of sprayers use different pressures. A lower pressure system reduces spatter since the paint is coming out with less force.
Extension Cord is Underrated For Use
Avoid using a small gauge and long extension cord - usually 12 gauge or larger.
Spray Tip is Too Large for Sprayer
Select a smaller spray tip. This is similar to a material flow setting that is too high. In this case, decrease the material flow setting.
Spray Tip, Gun Fluid Filter, or Inlet Screen is Clogged
Clean or replace the spray tip, spray gun filter, and clean debris off the inlet screen.
Additional clogs can appear in the suction tube and the air filter.
Pump Valves are Worn
First, prime the sprayer with paint. Then, trigger the gun momentarily. If the pump continues cycling long after the release of the trigger, the pump valves may be worn.
Rebuild or replace the pump.
Material is Too Thick
Thin the spray material based on material recommendations.
Incorrect or Low-Quality Paint
Not all paints are formulated for spraying, so confirm that your paint is designed for use in your system.
If your spray gun has a two-stage trigger and it is depressed all the way, you may experience spitting in the spray pattern. Depress the trigger to the first stage, so the turbine can reach operating speed, then depress the trigger completely.
Extension Tips Cause Spatter
When using an extension tip, expect spitting at the start and end of depressing the trigger. Start and end your spray off of the surface and on a masked surface.
Air Valve Tube is Disconnected
Check and reconnect both ends of the air tube.