Painting a Car with a Graco Airless Sprayer(4 Effortless tips)

Last Updated on June 28, 2022

I have been car painting industry for several years now. I have used all available options to paint the car. But honestly speaking, using an airless paint sprayer for car painting is one of the most effective ways to enhance the car outlook in a quick time. If you are a Graco lover, you can quickly use the Graco airless sprayer to paint a car. I bet; you will be surprised at the finish.

When it comes to painting a car with a Graco airless paint sprayer, you have to keep a few things in mind. You must prepare the car surface, prime it before painting and finally, prepare the Graco sprayer for the job.

I have broken down the car painting process so even a novice can perform it with ease.

Aren’t you interested in completing your 1st DIY car paint project with the Graco sprayer gun?

Tips on Painting A Car with A Graco Airless Sprayer

Car painting results in messy conditions more or less every time. You can opt for many techniques to paint the car, but an airless spryer such as Graco serves you with unbeatable performance.

The car paint can be divided into three main sections-

Painting StepsBrief DescriptionDuration
Preparing the car surfaceSanding the car paint Repairing imperfections with putty Using a dry cloth to clean the surface Cover the area where you won’t paint1 hour approximately
Prime the car surfacePick a well-ventilated place Apply the primer Sanding the primed surface Clean the car after priming1 hour and 20 minutes
Preparing the Graco gunChoosing the paint material Filling the sprayer cup Checking the nozzle and tip10-15 minutes
Spaying the paintTest spray on a small area Spraying the paint coats Finish up with a transparent coat1 hour and 30 minutes

You should by now know that car painting is a time-consuming process. So, you have to free up the time and start painting the car.

Step 1: Preparing the Car Surface

Firstly, place your car on the lawn or parking lot to paint it. If you decide to paint the car in the garage, make sure it has enough vents and air circulation. Otherwise, you may feel suffocated.

You have to use 600-grit sandpaper to sand the car body. Since it is a metal surface, we recommend you use such higher grits. It will speed up the sanding process. Start rubbing the sandpaper on the metal body and continue sanding until you observe paint flakes from the surface.

Then, use the 1500-grit sandpaper to continue the sanding process. Once you have sanded the paint, look for any holes, denting, or imperfections on the car body. If you find any, apply putty to repair the holes and imperfections.

You should always is the putty designed particularly for the car. Don’t use wood putty. Simply squeeze the putty inside the hole and use a putty knife to remove any excess. Finally, sand the place again to even out the place.

Now, take a piece of microfiber cloth and slowly clean the sanded car body. It will help you remove the flaking paint and prepare the surface smoothly.

Step 2: Priming the Car Surface

You have to prime the car to get the smoothest and most satisfactory car paint. While many people would opt for the aerosol sprayer, I found the epoxy primer works best. It clogs the paper when sanded. Also, you can opt for the polyester primer. It has a dual coating and works best when you have extensive painting and denting on the car body.

Once you have selected your primer, spray it over the paint location. You should keep the bottle at least 25cm centimeters away from the surface. After you have primed the entire surface, wait for 15 minutes to allow the material to get dry.

Then apply the 2nd and 3rd coats with 15 minutes intervals between each priming session. You should prime the car in a well-ventilated area to avoid suffocation.

Also, wear a face mask if possible. Also, you should avoid thick coating for the primer. Otherwise, it runs down the risk of primer dripping from the surface. Instead, use multiple coats without thickness.

Once the area is dried overnight, you must sand it using 1200-grit paper lightly. Then, use a clean microfiber cloth and remove any dust. Finally, use soapy water to rinse the surface for the painting project.

Step 3: Preparing the Graco Sprayer

Graco comes with multiple models of airless paint sprayers. I found the Graco Magnum X5 best for car paint. It comes with a paint bucket of 1/5 gallons capacity, and the suction cup is flexible also. Use the right paint that matches the color pallet of your car.

The Graco sprayer can use both thin and un-thin paint material. So, you don’t need to thin the paint additionally. Once you have filled the bucket and attached it with the sprayer gun, you are all set to go for the final assault.

Step 4: Paint the Car

At first, test sprays from the airless paint sprayer on a tiny section of the car body. Once you are satisfied with the result, continue coating the entire space you want to paint. Hold the spryer gun around 25cm away from the surface.

Also, set the flow rate at medium and evenly cot the surface. After you are done with the 1st coat, take a rest for 15 minutes. Then apply the 2nd coat. Then, wait for 30 minutes so that the paint dries. Finally, use transparent or clear paint to coat the surface. It works as waxing to protect the main paint material and gives a shiny look.

Precautions for Car Painting with Graco Sprayer

  1. You should use a facemask to save your mouth and nose from getting soaked with the paint particles.
  2. Always apply the sprayer in a well-ventilated space. It saves you from suffocation and paints allergy.
  3. Use the flash adapter to clean off the sprayer gun and hose immediately after the painting project. It enhances the sprayer’s lifespan.
  4. If the nozzle tip gets clogged, instead of wasting time cleaning it, simply reverse the top. It allows painting without wasting time.


These steps for painting a car with a Graco airless sprayer are easier than you anticipated. Graco sprayer offers a smooth and even coating with the least effort. Also, the sprayer is lightweight and has a flexible suction cup for quick spraying.

The overall finish will be more than impressive. People will fall in love with the shiny look of your car, mark my words.