Airless Paint Sprayer Tips Explained(Tip size chart added)

Last Updated on June 27, 2022

I have been coloring interiors and even furniture for a long while now. Coloring has always been a painstaking process, so you may wonder what do I use to color? Well, I use airless paint sprayers.

Paint sprayers have been around for a while now. They can be used to paint the largest areas to small delicate details by using different airless paint sprayer tips.

It is a delicate work of art that requires a degree of practice and skill to master. But the entire process can be quite simplified as well if you know what you’re doing. Different sized tips are available in the market to use for various purposes as well.

Painting with Spray

Do you know what’s spray painting is? Spray painting invokes the method of spraying different types of ink or paint on a desired area or surface.

What are paint sprayers? Paint sprayers are tools used to apply paint on various surfaces. It is a must-have tool. There are two types of spray painters.

The most commonly used type is paint spray guns that use air. They function by utilizing compressed gas to splash the paint particles on the desired surface. Even liquid paint can be used with these spray painters.

The other type is airless spray painters. Airless spray painters pump the paint or ink at extremely high pressure and are sprayed in a fan-like pattern.

The tools offer a vast range of versatility to use for different purposes and details. Both air paint sprayer and airless paint sprayer tips can be changed to get specific textures, patterns, and of varying sizes and shapes.

Why Spray Paint Tips are Important?

A paint spray combined with the right tip can do wonders. If you are unable to recreate what you visioned to do, it’s mostly because you are not using a proper tip. Using different tips is crucial to add that professional finish and intricate detailing.

So the first step is always to check your sprayer tip. Using the wrong spray tip might just ruin all your hard work.

The Right tip

Light and heavy coatings both have different preferred tips to use. In most cases, manufacturers will recommend which tip you should be using with that particle spray paint.

We should also point out the specifics. If you’re using a heavy coating that is textured then you will most often need to use a large tip. For light coatings like enamels, stains, and lacquers a small-sized tip is more useful.

Standard tip Sizes

We’ll be providing the standard sizes for different coatings. These sizes are used by spray painters everywhere and have become a common norm.

CoatingsStandard tip size
Stain or Laquer.009 – .013
Oil Paint.013 – .015
Latex Paint.015 – .019
Heavy Latex.021 – .025
Blockfiller & Elastomeric.025 – .035+

It’s best advised to adjust tip size to the recommended rating of the sprayer. You should always check if the sprayer supports your chosen tip or not. No one would want to be stuck with tips that aren’t supported by their sprayer.

Spray Tip Identification

To find out the specifications of the tip you’re using, there’s an easy way. Manufactured spray tips contain codes of three-digit which identify the properties of a tip.

Assume an identifier code is 216. The first number when multiplied by 2 means how wide and large of a fan will the tip create at 12 inches distance. A higher first digit simply means a bigger and wider spray size.

The second two numbers denote the exhaust size of a tip in the thousandth of 1-inch ratio. From the above example, 16 means the exhaust size will be 16 thousandths of one inch.

A higher exhaust size won’t necessarily mean a larger spray. As the spray fan size is determined by the first digit of the tip identifier number. Make sure to keep these in mind when you’re buying or choosing a tip.

Different Sized tips

How much coating or paint will spray out depends on the size of the tip. The orifice controls the flow of paint.

Normally, a larger-sized tip or orifice will disperse more paint while a smaller one will let less paint flow. Despite the size of the orifice, there’s another factor to this.

You can control the flow of paint by yourself as well. It depends on how lightly or heavily you apply pressure on the tip.

The tip identification numbers are extremely useful to determine which tip you should be using for your desired purpose. Again, the flow of paint is crucial in this painting process.

If we look at an example of two different tips, a 213 and a 245. Each tip will produce the same fan size when sprayed from a 10-inch distance. But the 245 tips will produce a much thicker coating. This is because of the larger orifice size.

So as you can see, with the correct tip, you can control every bit of the paint you spray out. It is advised to check the manufacturer’s suggested tips for a coating. However, feel free to experiment and find out which one suits your needs.

Wore Down Tips

Spray tips wear down with prolonged usage. You can’t use the same tip for an extended period and get the same result.

Tritech tips are said to be the hardest spray tips out there. It measures extremely close to the hardness of diamond on the Rockwell scale of hardness. But with the continuous and overtime use of sprayers, they are subjected to immense pressure.

Studies have shown that you can use a single tip to spray 300-600 liters of paint or coating before needing to change it. Of course, this may vary due to various factors.

Tip wear is easily noticeable. The paint that is sprayed can be observed to understand how worn down your tip is.

A brand new spray tip will produce paint with much softer edges. The paint will be much thinner. With a brand new tip, you will need less paint to cover a larger area and the pattern will be consistent unless you drastically increase or decrease the pressure.

A tip used for a decent while will behave differently. The edges of the fan will have a bit sharper edges than a new one. You will need to spray over one area to get that consistent pattern and coverage.

If it’s a worn-down tip then you will only be wasting your money. That tip will use significantly more paint to paint even a small area. The edges of fans will be more defined and sharper. There is absolutely no point in using an old worn-down tip.

If you are looking to buy spray tips, the Tritech tips will be a great option to look into. It’s proved that Tritech tips last more than other spray painter tips.

Using an Airless Spray Painter

The guards of any spray painter are equally important as the tips. Also, there are other precautionary steps that the painter needs to keep in mind while using one.

While using a spray painter greatly speeds up the painting process, it is also harmful if certain steps are not taken. Personal safety is important when using an airless spray painter. Make sure to wear respiratory masks when using a spray painter.

Spray paint is harmful to the human body should it somehow get inside us. Painters who work professionally with spray paint are lawfully bound to wear personal safety gear during work. Respiratory masks and safety goggles are a must.

Before you start applying spray on your intended surface, you should always check the paint first. Try out the spray on a piece of cardboard. You can observe if you’re getting the desired shape and pattern.

If you notice inconsistencies in your spray then there are a few things you can do primarily. It’s wise to check the pressure levels. Insufficient pressure will produce wobbly and undesired patterns.

The state of the paint or coating used is also crucial. If you use a coating that’s been left aside for a long time then it may become diluted and lose viscosity.

There are nozzle extensions available in the market that you can use to spray in places you can’t reach. Some nozzles are tailored to further enhance the spray fan size and cover an even larger area.

When painting with an airless spray painter, make sure that you move before your sprayer. A consistent speed and movement of both parties result in the perfect form and pattern. You can also overlap some areas every now and then.

Also, make sure to maintain the spray angle throughout the process. Unless you aim for a specific stylistic approach then this will not apply.


Spray painting is a very fun thing to do. A lot of people tend to paint their backward fences with spray painters. The entire painting process and the final result is an amazing achievement to witness for oneself.

Spray painting has been around for a very long time now. Whether you choose a regular spray painter or an airless spray painter the tips are very important. This comprehensive guide to choosing airless paint sprayer tips will answer all your questions.

So, what’s stopping you from going to your nearest hardware store and buying a couple of coatings, a spray painter, and a few different-sized tips? Create your own backyard masterpiece today!