How to Stop and Fix Orange Peel when Spraying Paint

How to Stop and Fix Orange Peel when Spraying Paint


– Today we’re going to be covering how you can stop, fix
and prevent orange peel. Orange peel is a problem
when you’re spraying paint, when your finish starts to
appear unsmooth and uneven, and ultimately you’re finished
result of your product will be a subpar looking finish. So if you’re looking for
smooth and consistent finishes when you’re
spraying, orange peel is on of your biggest problems,
that you may need to look at and figure out how to fix. So first we’re going to
show you how orange peel looks when you’re spraying a pattern, so you can notice it before it’s a problem across your whole finish. Then we’ll cover some practical steps to how you can prevent it and adjust to fix it when
you’re seeing it when you spray. The basics of what causes
orange peel is that there’s not enough air in the material
or essentially the particles of paint are finally
not broken apart enough. As a result, they aren’t able to flow out into a smooth looking finish. So I’m using HVLP with
Sherwin Williams Pro Classic. This is a common finish
that’s used for wood trim and similar type work. So, as you can see here
the edge of my pattern is very uneven and
chunky when I’m spraying. That will turn into orange
peel when I’m done spraying. I will spray this whole
surface so you can see what it looks like when I’m done. (spraying noise) Alright, so if you come
and look in on this closely you can see that over all
it’s a little chunkier, its not a smooth and very shiny finish. And that’s essentially what
orange peel will look like. You can notice orange peel
before you’re done spraying, because at the edges of your pattern, you’ll see a lot more large spots of paint rather than small broken up particles. Now that we understand what
orange peel looks like, we’ll give you some practical
tips of how you fix it. So as we’ve mentioned, the
basic reason why you get orange peel is that there’s
not enough breakup of the paint in your spray pattern. So your options to fix it
including making that paint, easier to be broken up,
making the amount of air into the paint a higher
volume and or pressure. Between the two volume will
help with HVLP and then with pressure that’s always going to help. Then the other thing you
can do is limit how much paint is being released into
your air as you’re spraying. So you’re trying to put
more air in a smaller amount of paint and it’s very basic level. That’s the goal is to either reduce the amount of paint,
increase the amount of air or make the paint easier
to be broken apart. So option one is to reduce
the paint or make it thinner. So you can add thinner into the paint. Now you don’t want to
do that excessively or you’ll start getting runs in your finish. So you can start with
usually five to 10% thinner and then gradually increase. If you’re much more over 20% or so thin, you may want to start
considering other options, like increasing the amount
of air into the paint or reducing the amount of paint that you’re using in a given amount of air by reducing your fluid
nozzle size or fluid tip. So, first we’ll show
you thinning the pain. I’ve gone ahead and
thinned the same material. So this is the same
product but I’ve gone ahead and thinned it about 10 to 15%. So even thinned I’m still
getting a little bit of boulders in my spray pattern here. So I could continue to
thin this material until I got a little bit easier pattern. But in this case I’m going
to go ahead and go to a next possible way I can make this
material break up better. And that’s to increase air pressure. Generally with HVLP there’s
a pressure recommendation that they suggest not to go
above or else you’ll start getting less efficiency out of the gun. So in this case I can
go up to about 24 lbs, which is about where I am. I’m still getting a
little bit of orange peel at the edge of my pattern. However, you can see my
overall particles are a lot smaller depending on
your goal, that might be sufficient for you. But, we’ll go ahead and
show you a little more thinning and then the other option . is continuing to increase air. Now obviously at this
point I’m not going to be running this gun with HVLP efficiency. But as I increase my air pressure, you can see my edge of my
pattern becomes very smooth, that would be relatively close
to a automobile type finish. So by increasing air you can eventually get rid of orange peel. So we’ve increased air,
we’ve thinned the material, that’s how we fixed it. You can also try a
different type of air cap. Now obviously if you’re
using an HVLP turbine unit, you’re going to want to
consider thinning the material and then trying to increase your pressure. And if you don’t find
that working you can use a smaller fluid tip for your material, so that there’s less material
but more air in that material, which gives finer break up, but if you have an air
spray gun that allow you, you can try a different
style of air spray gun. So that’s HVLP, HVLP
doesn’t atomize or break that material up quite
as well as what we call a conventional spray gun. Downside to a conventional
spray gun is that it’s not as efficient as an HVLP gun, but if you’re spraying thicker
materials like epoxies, or material like latex that’s thick you need a better atomization then the conventional gun might be able to help quite a bit. Obviously by increasing
air pressure beyond the recommendation of the air cap, that HVLP is working very
much like a conventional gun but we’re also gonna show
you a conventional cap so you can see the difference
that can potentially make. So conventional is great
option for easy break up for thick material. I’m gonna go ahead and
cut my pressure back down to about 25 where it was, but this time I’m using
a conventional cap. So I’m still getting a
little bit of orange peel, so I’ll go back up a little
bit to about 30 pounds. And with 30 pounds which is about 10 less than I was with my other cap, I’m getting close to where I want to be. So as I increase the pressure, the conventional cap relative to HVLP is gonna give me a little
bit better break up. So the other option as I mentioned, as long as your material would flow, is to reduce your fluid tip, but we’ll go ahead and thin
this material a slight bit more. I’m gonna go 15 to 20% so
you can see the benefit that would make. All right so this materials
thinned closer to about 20%. We are using HVLP. If you’re using HVLP or
looking for an easy reference point for spraying
material easily and getting good atomization. If it runs about 20 to
30 seconds an is on two, which is a type of measurement
cup that we’ve covered before and how to use, if you can get a cup like that
and are running at 20 to 30 seconds it’s very easy to get a smooth non orange peel finish, but this is HVLP and is thinned about 20%. So you can see with it thinned, that much on the edge on my pattern, I’m getting pretty close
to automotive type finish. It’s a little rougher than I would choose, but the challenge is if you thin too much, you start running into
issues with running. So I’ve thinned it, I would consider using a
little smaller tip potentially to help reduce the amount of material, or changing to a different style cap if I was really concerned about the finish, and you can always do I small
section to see how it looks and you maybe fine that
you’re satisfied with how that appears. This is actually turning
out somewhat decent overall. The other options that you can look at if you’re using a gun
that offers very low CFM or is a very low cost gun you may find that those low CFM guns tend to not break up material as much. CFM is a lot like horsepower to a car. It’s sort of the power that drives the spray guns performance. So while a low CFM gun may be sufficient, if you’re still finding issues, you’ve thinned your material, you’ve tried a smaller tip size, and you’ve considered different air caps if that’s available, you may want to look at the gun and the quality of what you’re using, and maybe use something that
offers more CFM at the air cap, which generally will be a
better performing option. You can also look at other
options technology wise. So HVLP and air spray guns, HVLP and conventional are
gonna give the finer finishes available and behind would
be Air Assist Airless or airless with a fine finish tip and then at the bottom of
the finish quality pyramid is a standard airless generally speaking. So, these are all the
various ideas you can use to help get rid of orange peel, we’ll go ahead and show
you one more option which is a tip size reduction. So this is actually
the less thin material. It’s only about 5 to 10% thinned and I went ahead and dropped
my tip size to a 1.2. Now you can also start with sort of general baselines for tips. So stains and those sort of
tips a 1.0 to a 1.2 is common, for base coats for automotive, anywhere from a 1.6 to 1.8. Topcoats are usually a 1.2 to 1.4, and for general kind
of industrial finishes most will start at
least at a 1.4 but often move up to a 1.8 or a 1.6
depending on the thickness. But, I’ve dropped my tip
on this one to a 1.2, and I’m actually using only
about 20 pounds of pressure and overall I’m getting a
little bit less orange peel relative to the larger tip. So a tip reduction is another way you can kind of fix some of your
orange peel problems. So as I said, when we’re looking at
the edge of that pattern it’s much more broken
up and that’s simply due to the smaller tip which
produces less material and a little more air and a
smaller amount of material gives us better break up. So that’s your fourth option. Increasing air pressure, thinning your material, reducing tip size, changing air cap, and or trying a different
style gun are all options you can consider
to get rid of orange peel. Now if you’re starting to
experience orange peel, some of the options, and you’re in the middle of spraying, your choices to fix that would include wiping the surface down
and starting to respray so you can address it
while you’re working, or if you’ve noticed it
too late and your finish is kind of done you’ll have
to peel that back by sanding or depending on the surface
whatever the proper cleaning method is, sometimes sand
blasting, and start over. Ideally you’d catch it
before you’re too far along by looking at your finish
and your air pattern prior to moving forward, and you’re looking for
the very small bubble, paint bubbles at the edges. So the less boulders there are, the better off you’d be. There’s a link in the comments below here that I’ll post that
shows you what different finish qualities look like
from a spray stand point with a photo image. If you have other questions on orange peel or you’re thinking equipments
are part of your challenges you can leave us a comment below or visit us online and we
can help out from there. Thanks for watching.

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