how to paint a popcorn ceiling

How to Paint a Popcorn Ceiling with a Sprayer: A Step-by-Step Guide

Last Updated on January 31, 2023

Tired of looking at your outdated popcorn ceiling? Want to give it a fresh new look without the hassle and mess that comes with traditional painting methods? Well, you’re in luck. In this blog post, we will show you how to paint a popcorn ceiling with a sprayer. It’s not as hard as it sounds – but there are some important steps involved, so make sure you follow along closely for the best results. From prepping the room to applying primer, painting, and finally cleaning up – our guide has got everything covered. So let’s get started on transforming your old popcorn ceiling into something beautiful today.

Table of Contents:

Preparing the Room

Before you can begin painting, it’s important to properly prepare the room. This includes removing any furniture and other items from the area that will be painted. If possible, move these items to another room or outside. It’s also a good idea to cover any remaining furniture with plastic sheeting or drop cloths.

Next, use painter’s tape to cover any trim around windows and doors as well as outlets and light switches. This will help ensure a clean line when you paint later on. Make sure you press down firmly on the tape, so it sticks securely in place without leaving gaps for the paint to seep through.

Once everything is taped off, it’s time to protect your floors and walls from drips of paint by covering them with plastic sheeting or drop cloths. Securely tuck the edges of the plastic into corners and along baseboards so there are no gaps where paint could escape onto your flooring or walls underneath.

Finally, ensure all surfaces are free of dust before beginning your project by wiping them down with a damp rag or using a vacuum cleaner attachment if necessary. Once this step is complete, you can start priming.

Applying Primer

applying primer to the wall

Primer is an essential step in any painting project. It helps to ensure that the paint adheres properly and lasts longer. Applying primer correctly can be a tricky task, but with the right tools and techniques, it’s easy to get great results.

The first step is to choose the right type of primer for your project. There are several types available, including oil-based primers, latex primers, and speciality primers designed for specific surfaces like metal or masonry. Make sure you read the instructions on the label carefully before making your selection.

Once you have chosen a suitable primer, it’s time to prepare your workspace for painting. Start by covering any furniture or flooring that may be affected by overspray from the sprayer gun when applying primer. Then make sure all surfaces are clean and free of dust or debris before beginning work with a damp cloth if necessary.

Once you have set up your sprayer gun according to the manufacturer’s instructions, begin spraying small sections at a time using slow sweeping motions until all surfaces have been completely coated with an even layer of primer. Allow each section enough time between coats so they don’t become too wet, which could cause runs or drips down walls. Once finished, allow sufficient drying time before continuing on the next steps, such as adding additional layers if needed or starting the actual painting job itself afterwards, respectively following suit thereafter.

Painting the Ceiling

Painting a popcorn ceiling with a paint sprayer can be an intimidating task, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right preparation and technique, you can get professional-looking results in no time.

Setting Up the Sprayer

Before you begin painting your ceiling, make sure that you set up your paint sprayer correctly. Start by attaching the nozzle of the sprayer to the gun and adjusting it so that it is at least 6 inches away from the surface of your ceiling. Make sure that all hoses are securely connected and that there are no leaks or clogs in any part of the system before turning on your paint sprayer.

Adjusting Nozzle Settings

Once everything is properly connected, adjust the settings on your nozzle according to what type of material you will spray onto your ceiling (e.g., latex or oil-based paints). The settings should also depend on how thickly or thinly you want to apply each coat of paint – if too much pressure is applied during the application, this could cause drips and uneven coverage across different parts of your ceiling.

Spraying Evenly

When ready to start spraying, hold down firmly on both sides of the trigger while moving steadily back and forth across each section of your popcorn ceiling until fully covered with even strokes (avoid going over one area more than once, as this may lead to an uneven finish). Keep a steady distance between yourself and the wall/ceiling throughout the application for best results – try not to move closer than 6 inches away from either surface as this could cause splattering or dripping onto other areas nearby.

FAQs in Relation to How to Paint a Popcorn Ceiling With a Sprayer

Can you use a paint sprayer to paint a popcorn ceiling?

a spray gun made of stainless steel

Yes, you can use a paint sprayer to paint a popcorn ceiling. However, it is important to take extra precautions when doing so. Make sure the area is well-ventilated and that all furniture and other items are covered with plastic or removed from the room completely. Additionally, ensure that the nozzle of your sprayer is set at a low-pressure setting in order to avoid over-spraying onto walls or other surfaces. With proper preparation and care, painting popcorn ceilings with a paint sprayer can be an effective way to quickly update any space.

How do professionals paint popcorn ceilings?

Painting popcorn ceilings is a tricky task that requires special preparation and technique. First, the ceiling should be thoroughly cleaned to remove any dust or dirt. Then, it’s important to repair any cracks or holes in the surface before painting. Once this is done, use an oil-based primer designed for textured surfaces like popcorn ceilings and apply it with a roller using light pressure. After the primer has dried completely, you can apply two coats of latex paint using a roller with medium pressure. Allow each coat to dry fully before applying another one, and finish off by lightly sanding between coats for an even smoother look.

What kind of paint do you use on popcorn ceilings?

When painting a popcorn ceiling, it is important to use oil-based paint. This paint will adhere better to the textured surface and provide a more durable finish. It is also recommended that you use a high-quality primer before applying the top coat of paint for the best results. Be sure to wear protective gear such as gloves, goggles, and a face mask when working with oil-based paints, as they can be hazardous if inhaled or ingested. Lastly, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for proper application and safety measures when using any paint on your popcorn ceiling.


With the right preparation, primer application and painting technique, you can achieve an even coat that will make your room look great. And don’t forget to clean up afterwards, so you don’t have any mess left behind. Now that you know how to paint a popcorn ceiling with a sprayer, why not give it a try?

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