What Solvent To Use To Clean HVLP Spray Guns? – Detailed Guide

Gone are the days when paint brushes were used for completing difficult painting tasks. Now paint sprayers are considered to be the most convenient way to complete the painting job in a fraction of time.

What Solvent To Use To Clean HVLP Spray Gun

Among them, HVLP spray guns are highly professional spray guns that are suitable for painting various households including cabinets, furniture, and vehicles, offering a smooth finish with higher speed and accuracy. After completing the painting tasks, cleaning and maintaining the HVLP spray gun is also very important.

What Solvent To Use To Clean HVLP Spray Guns?

What Solvent To Use To Clean HVLP Spray Guns

1. Acetone

Acetone is considered to be one of the most effective solvent for cleaning HVLP spray guns. The main function of this solvent is that it easily dissolves grease and paint. Also, it can be used for cleaning the disassembled parts.

For cleaning these parts, you need to soak them in acetone and leave it for some time. Furthermore, acetone is also cost-effective, easily accessible, and safe to use.

2. Lacquer Thinner

This solvent is also a highly effective option for cleaning the spray gun. The lacquer thinner is like acetone but is not safer as acetone. The most important thing that the user needs to remember is that this solvent is highly flammable and should be used with precautions.

In order to clean the spray gun, the foremost step is to disassemble the spray gun parts. After that place these parts in the container and soak it in the solvent for a few minutes. By using a dry cloth, clean the wet parts.

3. Cleaning Kit

Cleaning of the spray gun is very important if you are its frequent user. Investing in a better spray cleaning kit will make the cleaning process easier and less time-consuming. The best part of these kits is that they can be used for cleaning all types of spray guns. These kits contain 15 different types and sizes of spray brushes that are specifically designed to reach all the crevices and cracks. Among the two solvents, acetone is considered to be one of the safest solvents included in the kit.

4. Natural Cleaners

Natural cleaners are an affordable and effective solvent that can also be used for cleaning the HVLP spray guns. Furthermore, citrus-based cleaners are highly suitable for oil-based finishes and can also be used to thin the paint.

An important reminder for the users is to never use natural cleaners with water-based paints. Apart from this, a mixture of regular dishwashing soap and water can also be used for cleaning the spray guns.

5. Cleaning The Coats Of Paints

There are lots of DIYs available for cleaning the spray guns having different layers of the same color. On the other hand, if the spray gun is sealed properly, there is no need to disassemble the parts for cleaning. However, the easiest way is to remove the paint nozzle and rinse it out thoroughly to clean all the clogs and dirt.

Furthermore, for oil-based paints, leave the nozzle in the cleaning solvent for a few minutes and then clean it with a dry cloth. The users can also use the moist rag to clean the nozzle and wrap it up until use it again. While cleaning, make sure to rinse the nozzle with any solvent before the next application of the paint.

Also, the paint should be left in the spray gun for almost 3-4 hours while waiting for the paint to dry. Leaving the paint in the spray gun for a longer time period will make the cleaning more difficult and challenging.

6. Disassembling Of The Spray Gun For Cleaning

The first and foremost step is to remove the air regulator from the spray gun by disconnecting the electrical source. After that, the next step is to empty the spray gup cup and add a small amount of solvent into the cup and wipe out all the paint residues. The next step is to remove the filter which is located at the base of the tube. Fill the cup half with the solvent and whirl it around by sealing the lid.

After that reconnect the paint gun with the turbine and hose and spray the solvent solution all over. Make sure that this process is done in an outdoor or well-ventilated area in order to prevent the inhalation of the solvent. The process is repeated till the solvent clears out all the paint residues. After completing the process use the damp cloth or rag to clean up all the parts and cup properly and also wipe down the lid as well.

Moreover, while cleaning the parts of the spray gun, make sure to clean the valve from the paint residue. Finally, the user will need to lose the fluid control knob and be careful not to lose the spring. With the help of a wrench, slowly free the nozzle at the front side of the spray gun.

After that soak the fluid nozzle, needle, and air cap into your favorite solvent for cleaning. In order to tackle the hidden and stubborn paint stains, make sure to use a small cleaning brush for proper cleaning.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I clean the spray gun with?

You can easily clean the spray gun with acetone or lacquer thinner. These two solutions can be used to clean the various parts of the spray gun properly. Apart from this, the automotive grade lacquer and paint gun cleaning solution can also be used to clean the spray gun effectively.

Will acetone clean the spray gun?

Acetone is the safest and most cost-effective solvent that can be used for cleaning the spray gun. This is the quickest and most effective way to clean the crannies and nooks of the external part of the spray gun.

What can I use instead of mineral spirit?

The best substitutes for mineral spirits include acetone, alcohol, turpentine, charcoal lighter fluids, etc. Apart from this, the mixture of dishwashing soap and water can also be an effective option for removing stubborn stains from the paints.

What is the difference between acetone and lacquer thinner?

One of the main differences between acetone and lacquer thinner is that acetone is considered to be a colorless, highly volatile, and flammable organic compound whereas lacquer thinner is the substance that can be used to thin the consistency of lacquer paints.

How to clean the spray paint gun with dried paints?

The first step is to remove the nozzle and clean the tip properly to remove the paint. The next step is to remove the filter from the spray gun and clean it thoroughly. After that run the clean water over the parts of the spray gun and also clean out the inlet strainer.

Should the HVLP gun be cleaned between the coats?

If you are switching from paint to lacquer or using another color of paint, you should clean the HVLP gun between the coats for better results.

Concluding Guide about Solvent to Clean HVLP Spray Gun

HVLP spray guns are highly professional spray guns that offer a smooth finish with high speed and accuracy. This spray paint gun completes the painting task with high efficiency in less time period. After completion of tasks, the next important step is to properly clean the parts of the spray gun. Furthermore, for cleaning the spray guns, the two most common solvents are used i-e acetone, lacquer thinner, natural cleaners, etc.

Acetone is one of the most common and highly effective solvents for cleaning the spray gun and is also the safest option. On the other hand, the lacquer thinner can also be used for cleaning purposes but this should be used with proper precautions.

Moreover, natural cleaners are also used for the proper cleaning of HVLP spray guns. The easiest way is to disassemble all the parts and soak them in the solvent for a few minutes. After that, clean them with a dry cloth. You can also use small brushes for cleaning the nooks and crannies of the parts, especially nozzles.


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