Automotive Refinishing Pollution Prevention Outreach Program

This page last reviewed March 11, 2011




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Simply put, transfer efficiency is the amount of material coming out of the spray gun that actually ends up as a coating on the desired surface. Increased transfer efficiency means overspray is decreased, less coating materials are used, and you and the environment are healthier because there are fewer emissions! Transfer efficiency greatly depends on the technician's skill and spraying techniques, so emissions released during painting are directly related to the skill of the spray gun operator.


To increase transfer efficiency and minimize emissions, practice the following spray application techniques:

Select the recommended air pressure and tip sizes for the products and equipment used.

Always hold the gun perpendicular to the surface being sprayed, using parallel strokes. Never arc the gun.

Feather the trigger at the beginning and end of each pass.

Use a 50 percent overlap for each pass. This technique may need to be altered slightly when applying high-metallic, high-solids basecoats and some three-stage systems.

If blending is necessary, keep the blend area as small as possible without jeopardizing the appearance of the blend.

Spray the border edges of the substrate first (banding). This will assure all edges are covered without extending the spray pattern well beyond the borders of the object.


For a printer friendly copy of this fact sheet, click here.

Contact Ms. Nancy Adams for additional information regarding the Automotive Refinishing Pollution Prevention Outreach Program.

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