Metal Painting and Coating Operations

Table of Contents  Background  Regulatory Overview  Planning P2 Programs  Overview of P2  Surface Preparation
Alternatives to Solvent-Borne Coatings  Application Techniques  Curing Methods  Equipment Cleaning

Appendix D HVLP Spray Gun Purchasing Guidelines

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources developed the following list of purchasing considerations for HVLP guns to help Wisconsin businesses identify and evaluate current pollution prevention opportunities. Although this list does not cover every aspect of equipment selection, it includes some of the more important points and provides considerations for evaluating HVLP equipment.

  • Would a cup-fed or a tank-fed sprayer be best for the applications?
  • A cup-fed sprayer is an excellent choice for small jobs because it can be loaded with only the amount of paint that is needed.
  • A tank-fed sprayer would be more effective for continuous, large volume operations in which the tank would need to provide a substantial supply of paint.
  • Would the firm want to add an air heater to the HVLP system?
  • Air heaters may decrease the drying time.
  • Air heaters will increase the transfer efficiency of high solids coating material.
  • Air heaters reduce the moisture condensation inside the system.
  • Can the firm adapt any part of the existing system to the HVLP system or will they need to replace the system as a whole?
  • Is the spray equipment warranted for use with the material that you want to apply?
  • Are the electrical controls and components UL listed, and do they meet the firm's standards for safety at their facility?
  • What is the weight of the spray gun?
  • If the gun is used for an entire shift, the weight of the gun could affect the productivity of the worker using it.
  • A spray gun made from composite materials may be lighter than a gun made from metal.
  • What are the available sizes and shapes of the nozzles that can be used on the spray gun? Are the nozzles compatible with the material that must be applied?
  • Is the equipment easy to disassemble (and reassemble) for the cleaning and maintenance of critical parts?
  • Gun washers are considered by some to be an effective means of cleaning spray equipment. Some services rent these gun washers and sell the solvents that are used in them. When the washing solvent is dirty, the service will pick up the old solvent for recycling and drop off new cleaner.
  • If you need to supply multiple HVLP spray guns simultaneously, will the operation of the spray equipment be affected significantly?
  • Can an automatic positioner be added to the HVLP system?
  • An automatic positioner holds the spray gun in the desired position while the material is applied. This reduces worker fatigue and improves reproducibility.
  • Are there any local, state or federal health and safety or environmental quality regulations that apply to the use of this equipment?
  • What are the electrical power requirements for the HVLP system? Is the system energy efficient? (MnTAPb, p. 1-3)