Can You Spray Drylok with a Paint Sprayer

Drylok is a popular masonry waterproofer used to coat basement walls and concrete to prevent moisture damage. Typically it is brushed or rolled onto surfaces, but some homeowners wonder if using a paint sprayer can speed up the application process. In this article, we’ll look at the pros and cons of spraying Drylok so you can decide if it’s the right choice for your project.

The Benefits of Spraying Drylok

The main advantage of using a paint sprayer for Drylok is the potential for faster application. Brushing large basement walls or foundations can be tedious and time-consuming. Spraying may allow you to coat these areas faster. You’d also avoid the arm fatigue that can come with brushing heavy masonry coatings.

Better Coverage

Spraying may also provide better coverage, especially if you have textured concrete block walls. The fine spray can penetrate and adhere to rough surfaces more easily. This leads to an even coat with no thin spots or drips. For large commercial waterproofing jobs, airless spray is the standard method contractors use for efficiency and quality results.

Potential Drawbacks to Consider:

Difficult Overspray Control

However, there are some downsides to consider with spray application of Drylok. Overspray can be difficult to control and may get Drylok where you don’t want it. Tarps and masking is extra work. Care must be taken to protect nearby surfaces.

Frequent Clogging

Spray tips may clog frequently since Drylok is thicker than typical paints. This requires monitoring and clearing of any obstructions which can disrupt the workflow. Keeping a clean spray tip is essential.

Skill Required

Achieving an even coat takes skill with sprayer nozzle control and the right spraying technique. It’s not as simple as just pointing and shooting the Drylok. The arm should be moved at a steady pace, maintaining the same nozzle distance to ensure even coverage.

Prompt Back-Brushing

Drylok sets up quickly once sprayed, so any back-brushing must be done promptly before it dries. There is little time to correct mistakes. Working in sections is best to allow time for back-brushing.

Over-Thinning Risks

To prevent clogging and improve sprayability, there is a temptation to add too much water which can compromise bonding and performance. Only thin Drylok according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Blasts of Pigment

Occasionally a blast of unmixed pigment can spurt out unexpectedly and stain surfaces. Always strain thinned Drylok through a mesh filter before spraying.

Respirator Required

Spraying vaporized Drylok can fill the air with fine droplets containing silica and other hazards requiring N95 respirator use along with eye protection. Improper respiratory protection risks unsafe exposure and lung damage.

Surface Preparation

In order for Drylok to properly bond, surfaces much thoroughly cleaned, patched, and primed first. Attempting to spray over compromised substrates will result in failure.

High Pressure Required

Be sure to use an airless sprayer able to achieve a minimum of 3500 PSI pressure and output of 1 gallon per minute for proper spraying. Battery-powered or lower pressure sprayers may lead to frustration.

Professional Sprayer Recommended

Given the risks and technical considerations involved, unless highly experienced with spray equipment, hiring a painting contractor may yield the best results and avoid expensive redos or safety hazards if mistakes happen.

Overall, spraying Drylok can be an effective application method if done properly, but also carries risks. Controlling overspray, preventing clogs, achieving an even coat, and quick back-brushing takes skill. For large residential or commercial jobs, the time and efficiency gains can make spraying worthwhile. For smaller DIY projects, the prep work, risks and equipment investment may not pay off vs simpler rolling. Carefully weigh the pros and cons before deciding what method is right for your specific Drylok coating project and skill level.

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