Spraying Makes Sense When Decorating

Updated May 4, 2024 | Posted Apr 30, 2019 | Professional insight, Miscellaneous | 0 comments

Does spraying make sense? That is one question that comes up on the Decorators Forum UK all the time! The answer to this continuingly asked question is yes, but not always.

I love spraying and as a decorator I can make very good money doing it on certain jobs. However, I mostly work in domestic houses, meaning a lot of the time I have to work around furniture and over carpet. It isn’t always practical to spray. Even if it can be sprayed, sometimes it’s just quicker to brush and roller.

Let’s look at the time factor to begin with. If your job entails spraying a large ceiling in an empty room then it’s worth cracking an airless sprayer out. The room needs to be sheeted up anyway, but if you’re only spraying the ceiling then you can get away without masking up things like windows. I can spray two full coats of emulsion on a ceiling in 15 minutes (5 minutes per coat with a 5 minute drying time). It takes me 10 minutes to get the sprayer set up, then maybe 20 minutes to clean it and pack away again.

However, if you’re working in that one room then it probably isn’t worth spraying the walls or woodwork. You end up spending more time masking up than you do painting. Time is money and it’s important to know when to and when not to use your sprayer.


New Build Decorating


OK, here is an example of when spraying DOES make sense!! If you have a new build or refurbished house to paint and you have a clear run at things, you’ll get it done in half the time with a sprayer than you would via brush and roller!! The ceilings can be sprayed to a finish, as can the majority of the woodwork (you end up putting a brush full of gear on every so often when snagging). The only thing I use a brush and roller for is the last coat on the walls really.


You still need to do all the prep by hand and you spend more time cleaning and masking up than you do painting (which can be frustrating at times). It’s well worth the effort though. You’ll make more money as a decorator and the finish will be far better. If you need any pointers check out how to spray a new build house.


Exterior Spraying – uPVC and Masonry


Painted uPVC is becoming more and more popular. People don’t seem to want white or brown windows anymore and painting them is a lot cheaper than replacing. Spraying uPVC makes a lot of sense, but this time it isn’t because of the time you save. In fact, it’s probably quicker to use a brush. The issue is uPVC is its normally completely flat, so you need your paint to be completely flat. The only way you can achieve this is by spraying. It’s a little bit specialist though and involves HVLP over airless. Products such as kolorbond or HMG are the way to go.

Spraying masonry render or even pebble dash is something I love doing!! You can make really good money out of it by spraying over brush and roller, plus the finish is much better. You can get more product onto the substrate and there is far less mess and overspray than traditional methods. I normally back roll one coat when doing pebbledash. Sometimes using a jet roller is sufficient.


How to Make the Simple Steps into Spraying


Every decorator should spray, and I think every decorator in the next generation probably will. It makes sense to spray, it’s as simple as that. I wasn’t taught to spray in Collage and then I bought my first airless, there wasn’t any training providers to help.

Not there is. Expert tutors at PaintTech and Dulux Academy make learning to spray very easy and inexpensive. I would highly recommend it to any decorator.


Final Thoughts


For me, it’s a resounding ‘yes’, spraying makes sense for a decorator. When I was at collage 18 years ago, we didn’t get taught how to spray, and decorating is an aging trade. So, most of the decorators out there never trained in spraying when they were learning their craft. We need additional training further on in our career. Luckily, as outlined in the section above, that training is easy to come by.

Decorating is a business, and any decorator who knows how to spray will, generally speaking, earn more money. It’s your chance to specialise, or have a unique selling point, or even just cut down on labour. You will achieve a better finish, and paint things you’ve never been able to paint before.

Blog written by Mike Gregory – Professional Painter and Decorator

Updated May 4, 2024 | Posted Apr 30, 2019 | 0 comments

About the Author

About the Author

Mike Cupit has been in the decorating industry since 2002 and has mostly worked as a Trade Decorator in the domestic sector (peoples’ homes). Self-proclaimed “product geek”, Mike has a passion for paint and decorating tools. Mike now spends most of his time testing paint products and tools, comparing them to similar products on the market, and blogging about the industry in general.


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