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I am going to be painting the inside of my 2-story home except for the bedrooms, so I have a fairly large area to cover. How much more paint would a paint sprayer use, compared to using paint rollers? We are considering using Sherman Williams paint and don't want our expenses to get out of hand.

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I would assume that a sprayer will use more paint than a roller, which in turn uses more paint than a brush. Obviously the finish is different in each case. – ChrisF May 17 '11 at 16:14
Yeah I've heard that a sprayer uses more; I'm just curious roughly how much more (such as a percentage, as an estimate). – Jon Onstott May 17 '11 at 16:33
I meant to say "quite a bit" - but I have no data, hence the comment. – ChrisF May 17 '11 at 16:34
That makes sense. I hadn't thought about how the finish would look in each case. – Jon Onstott May 17 '11 at 16:46

I have used a sprayer to paint my house before we moved in. While I can't qualify how much more paint I used, it did feel like I used more compared to rolling, but I think part of that is because it goes so quick and I may have been painting over the same areas more than I would have with a roller.

One thing to note though, when I sprayed my home, there was nothing in it. No flooring, window treatments, etc. Spraying, no matter how careful, will leave some atomized paint in the air, which will eventually hit the floor or whatever else you don't want to have paint on it. Be prepared to mask, tape, and tarp everything you don't want painted that can't be removed from the room. You will want a mask and a respirator of some kind (you probably don't need anything fancy). The mask I used had a roll of film built in it so that I could get a "clean view" when too much paint got on it. That was especially handy when doing the ceilings.

Personally, now that I have moved in, I would roll instead of spray.

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High Volume Low Pressure HVLP will probably be comparable. I have used a High Pressure cannister/gun with my air compressor and wasted a ton of paint to the air. The HVLP sprayers are supposed to be pretty good now.

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Hi if your using an airless sprayer you can expect about 45 percent of your coating to actually hit the target. Jim is right if your in the building there is going to be tremendous overspray and will create a real headache. For an estimate of how much coating if you are going to spray you can check out this article which has a calculator to determine how much paint will be needed for your project either rolled or sprayed a home typically has about 4 - 5 mils of paint on a finished wall so you can use that or a bit higher to estimate spray needs. Remember airless equipment is about 40 percent efficient when using the calculator. Best of luck!

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