brush and roll vs spray painting

Spray and back roll paint

What is better for exterior painting in Portland? Spraying paint or applying paint using a brush and roller.  We get asked this question a lot from our potential customers.  There are advantage and disadvantages to both applications.  We explain more below.

Spraying paint only

  • Advantages
    • Faster application (when hiring a professional your quote is based on labor hours=less cost to you)
    • More precise millage (thickness) of paint is applied to all surfaces
    • Smooth finish when applied properly
  • Disadvantages
    • Paint rests on top of surfaces, it does not penetrate porous surfaces
    • Improper application or equipment can cause fingering or flash marks on smooth siding
    • Masking for spraying paint can take more time than just brushing and rolling
    • Overspray can land on anything nearby


Brushing and Rolling paint

  • Advantages
    • Your assured that you are applying paint to all areas that need paint
    • Paint is getting pushed into porous areas
    • No overspray paint loss
    • No masking needed, just open the can and begin painting
    • Equipment costs are minimized
  • Disadvantages
    • Slower application (when hiring a pro painter your paint quote is based on labor.  Brush and roll is typically a slower application versus spray=more labor hours)
    • Inconsistent paint millage (thickness) is easier to occur
    • On smoother surfaces roller nap and brush strokes can be seen
    • More days to complete a project

You can see there are advantages and disadvantages to both exterior painting applications.   Now, lets talk about using a combination of both by spraying and back rolling.  Painting Oregon uses this method on 95% of our exterior repaint projects in Portland.  Take the advantages of spraying and brushing and rolling and you have the Spray and Back Roll (or back brush).  On newer fiber cement siding or cedar lap siding that is smooth we might opt not to use this process as typically our customers likes that smooth and blemish free appearance.  But, on any lead homes, t1-11, or shingled home the spray and back roll will get the job done the right way every time.  Check out the video below of our painters spraying and back rolling Sherwin-Williams Woodscapes on to the cedar shingles.