Paint Sprayer In The Garage? Think Twice About Using It To Disinfect...
The coronavirus pandemic has challenged businesses, schools and other public places to come up with efficient and effective ways to clean, sanitize, and disinfect.
With paint sprayers and electrostatic technology already widely used, maintenance staff, equipment distributors and many others are asking about using airless and/or electrostatic paint spray guns to disinfect areas. While this may seem like a no-brainer idea, it's vitally important to understand that a disinfectant sprayer and paint sprayer are two very different beasts wearing a similar coat.
Can I Use My Airless/Electrostatic Paint Sprayer To Disinfect?
The short answer? No, that's a bad idea.
The atomization produced by most airless paint sprayers is too strong, making most disinfectants, sanitizers and deodorizers less effective and possibly harming people nearby. The particles are overpressured as they come out of the spray nozzle, creating extremely small droplets that do not have enough weight to sink to the surface and get to work. These droplets can hang in the air for some time, even drifting on air currents to land on surfaces that were not intended as targets.
Most disinfectants are powerful chemicals and are dangerous for humans to breathe, so by using a paint sprayer instead of a disinfectant sprayer you not only botch the job, but you could potentially botch the health of yourself and others.
You should only use equipment made specifically for applying disinfectants, sanitizers and deodorizers. Using the right equipment ensures safe, reliable operation. It also minimizes maintenance and keeps people safe during application as most disinfectant chemicals are corrosive to the internal parts of paint sprayers, as well as the human applying it.
Can I Use My Electrostatic Paint Sprayer With Disinfectant?
Even electrostatic paint sprayers, known for their wrap-around coverage and even layering, are not something to use disinfectants with. The internal parts of an electrostatic sprayer differ slightly from an airless sprayer, although both use airless technology.
An electrostatic sprayer designed for paint will degrade just as quickly, if not faster than a sprayer specifically designed for applying disinfectants. If the machine degrades enough, the electrostatic generator could break as well, costing an embarrassing trip to the store to buy two sprayers: one for painting, and one for disinfecting.
What Makes A Graco Disinfectant Sprayer Special?
Some paint spraying manufacturers advertise to use their machines with disinfectants, and even a Graco paint sprayer can handle disinfectants on small jobs. The issue is in the long term - if a machine isn't designed to hold and spray chemical disinfectants, the pump and trigger will corrode over time.
Graco disinfectant sprayers also feature a lower operating pressure than similar paint sprayers. Overspray and over-atomization is not the most effective way to apply disinfectants and sanitizers, especially when you consider the cost of disinfectant chemicals.