Cleaning and Caring for Your Hopper Gun
Hopper guns play an important role in properly finishing drywall-covered walls. Leaving excess drywall compound in your gun can cause clogs or release dirty particles into your next finish, making it essential to properly clean and care for the gun in order to ensure a quality finish and the longest life for your equipment. Here are some key steps to take immediately after each use of your hopper gun to ensure it keeps functioning to the best of its ability.
Step 1: Clear excess drywall residue
The first thing you should do after using your hopper gun is clear any excess drywall residue. To do so, detach the air supply from your gun and remove all remaining drywall from the material container. Once this step is completed, fill the hopper with soapy water. Trigger the spray gun as you normally would until a clear fluid is exiting from the nozzle.
Note: Remember to use cleaning agents that have been recommended by the material manufacturer. Using solvents that contain harsh substances (such as halogenated hydrocarbons, acids, regenerated solvents, or paint removers) can cause unwanted and harmful chemical reactions.
Step 2: Clean the spray gun attachments
Now that all excess drywall residue is removed, it is time to clean the individual parts of your spray gun. Start by removing the fluid adjustment knob and then remove the exposed spring and fluid needle. Be careful not to damage or bend the needle when removing it for cleaning. Next, remove the air cap on the front of the gun as well as the fluid nozzle. All individual pieces should be rinsed and dried before replacing them. Then, rinse the entire gun and dry fully. After this has been done, reattach all the necessary pieces.
Step 3: Apply oil to moving parts
To ensure a proper movement for future use, consider applying a few drops of light oil to any moving parts. This includes the air hose quick disconnect, hose connections, and flow adjustment on the gun. This will preserve the life of your gun and promotes effective functionality from one job to the next.
Recommended cleaning schedule:
At the bare minimum, you should be flushing your hopper gun out once a day. However, the level of use and general wear will ultimately determine the best cleaning schedule for you. You can purchase a hopper gun cleaning kit that includes a variety of brushes to assist in the hopper gun cleaning process.
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