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painted fence with landscaping

How to Paint a Fence with a Paint Spray Gun

Discover how to paint a fence faster whiile achieving professional looking results with a Wagner paint sprayer.

Introduction: Why Use a Paint Sprayer?

When you’ve got a big project that needs to be painted or stained, but don’t have (or don’t want to invest) a lot of time, a combo paint and stain sprayer is the perfect tool! Whether you’re adding some color to a fence, a deck, siding, or even repainting the entire interior of your home, a the use of a paint spray gun can get the job done in a fraction of time compared to traditional brushes or rollers.

I wanted to paint my fence, which has been on my bucket list of projects since we moved in years ago. With spring here and temps warming up, this was the right time to check this item off my list! To transform this fence, I had teamed up with Wagner who sent me their Wagner Control Pro 130 Power Tank Sprayer. The hardest part was deciding what color to paint the fence; the rest was easy! Let's walk through what I did to complete the project and the materials needed.

Here is what my wooden fence and section of yard looked like before I started.


Original unpainted fence before paint spraying project


A wooden fence stain sprayed a flat grey with blue tint

Pressure Washing

Always start with a clean surface

Start with making sure your surface is completely free of dust, dirt, and debris. A pressure washer does a great job of cleaning off decks and fences. Let it thoroughly dry about 24 hours before moving on with your project.

Pressure wash the fence to remove dust, dirt and debris prior to paint spraying

Cover the Ground and Shrubs

When using a paint sprayer, make sure the following areas are protected from overspray.

  • Ground near the fence
  • Adjacent walls or fences
  • Nearby trees and shrubs

Display of materials needed to paint spray a fence

Unbox the Paint Sprayer

The Wagner Control Pro 130 comes with the parts and accessories needed to paint your fence or deck. If you're using stain, however, you will need a spray tip for airless spraying stains

To get started with using this paint sprayer, there are some prep things you need to do before you start spraying. Consult the included manual for more details, but in summary, you’ll need to:

  • Step A: Prime the airless paint sprayer with water.
  • Step B: Prime the airless sprayer with your paint (or stain).
  • Step C: Test the spray gun (without the tip) to make sure that paint (or stain) is actually flowing through the spray gun.
  • STEP D: Test the spray gun (with the tip) on a piece of scrap wood or cardboard to make sure it's spraying properly.

Unboxing of the Wagner Control Pro 130 HEA Paint Sprayer

Do a Test Spray

Practice with your sprayer first.

You always want to see how the paint color and spray pattern will be with a new material. Therefore, before each project, do a test spray on a piece of wood or cardboard. Practice keeping the nozzle about 10” - 12” away and overlap each spray by 50%. If you notice runs, it means the spray gun is too close to the surface of your project.

The included Wagner spray poster, or large flattend cardboard boxes are perfect for familiarizing yourself with the CP-130 airless sprayer. Once you feel comfortable spraying the material, it’s time to complete your project!

Practice paint spraying on plywood or cardboard

Add 1-2 Coats of Paint

Keep the paint spray gun as close to a 90-degree angle to the ground as possible. Move with the sprayer gun up and down and side to side when working on your project. Determine how much paint or stain you’ll need and buy extra just in case, so you don’t have to stop mid-way through your project for a supplies run.

Pro Tip: Remember, newer wood surfaces, or covering up darker colors may require more paint than recommended. If you're unsure of how much to buy, speak with a paint professional at your local paint or hardware store.

A person paint spraying a wooden fence with a Wagner sprayer

Clean Up the Paint Sprayer

Consult the owner's manual for complete instructions on how to clean up the paint sprayer. I used a water-based paint on my fence, and these are the cleanup steps I followed:

  • De-pressurize the spray gun.
  • Empty the left over paint back into the paint can.
  • Clean out the hopper (tank) with fresh water.
  • Once tank is clean, add fresh clean water.
  • Run clean water through spray gun until it runs clear (without the spray tip).
  • Prime the rest of the clean water through the small plastic hose until it runs clean.

Empty 1 gallon paint cans showing high capacity tank of Wagner Control Pro 130

Add a Garden and Flowers!

A little landscaping can be the difference between good and great!

A pretty fence needs plants and pretty flowers! I decided to turn the area into a small garden. I’ll later add some wood chips as mulch it to help keep those pesky weeds away. It's silly to think that I was worried about the paint color! I think anything else would have been completely boring. This blue-gray "Flat Top" color jazzes up the space. I also added a fence around the area to keep out animals like stray cats.

If you've got a fence (or a deck, or some other indoor or outdoor project) where the thought of using a paint brush or a roller breaks you out in hives, definitely consider using the a Wagner paint sprayer. It gets the job done much faster and the clean-up is pretty easy, too!

This sponsored post was created by Thrift Diving. Head to the blog for the full post and details.

A person planting shrubs by newly painted fence
Products Used


Pressure washer

Extension cord (50 ft - 100 ft)

Behr House and Fence Wood Stain Solid Color - Flat Top


Newspaper or cardboard to protect from overspray

Painter's tape

Overflow bucket



Face Mask

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