Commercial Painting Services – Brushing vs. Spray Painting

The world of paint technology has come a long way since the first paint factories began popping up across the country in the mid 1800’s. The ingredients, the quality, and the form of application of paint has evolved to meet new needs and safety measures over the years. Our focus today is going to be on the evolution of paint application technologies and if brushed or sprayed is a preferred application method in the commercial sector. 

At JMA Painters, we are often asked if our commercial painting services include brushed or sprayed painting techniques.  While we do have our preferences, any quality commercial paint contractor will tell you that a combination of the two, depending on the project, is what works best. For example, utilizing spray paint application on an exterior project is much more efficient than brushing while an interior project with lots of small tricky spots may be favored by brushing. Before we dig into the pros and cons of each, let’s take a very brief look into the evolution of both methods. 

Brush Painting Application

Brush painting is exactly what it sounds like – you apply the paint with a standard paint brush or roller. Up until the 1940’s, paint application by brush was the only option. The paint roller was invented as a way to cover areas of space quicker without giving up the smooth finish. A fun fact – the roller was actually invented as a solution to a paint brush shortage due to the war. As you can imagine, rollers were game changers for commercial painters and their commercial painting services. 

Spray Paint Application

Would you believe it if I told you the origins of spray paint application can be dated all the way back to the late 1800s? In 1887, Joseph Binks was the first person to apply paint using a pressurized sprayer gun. It had to be manually pumped by hand but it began a transformation of the paint industry. The evolution of the paint sprayer took off in the early 1900s and is now a very common form of paint application in the paint contractor industry, particularly for exterior paint jobs. 

Pros and Cons

We cannot stress enough that the form of application of paint is not nearly as important as the experience and expertise of the beholder. There are both pros and cons to spraying and brushing but which you choose should be based on the specifics of the project and who is doing the work. Most commercial painting services will involve a healthy balance of spraying vs brushing. If you are doing a DIY project and do not have experience with spray paint applicators, we highly recommend you go with the traditional brushing method. Below are some pros and cons for brushing and spraying. 

Brushing Pros & Cons


-Much less prep work than spraying
-Very little experience needed to get the job done (Although more experience = better outcome in regards to quality and life of the paint).
-Utilizes less paing
-Utilizes less equipment
-Much quicker clean up
-Easier to apply for small or tricky areas


-Much more time consuming (Which can mean more expensive if having done professionally)
-Risk of brush stroke marks – not always as smooth of a finish
-Typically requires more coats of paint

Pros & Cons of Spray Painting


-The biggest pro of spray painting is speed! Spray application is significantly faster than brushing.
-Smoother finish. If applied properly, the paint will look seamless.
-Can be cheaper to have done professionally
-Single coat coverage


-Requires experience (lack of experience can result in too thick of paint, drips, uneven finish and more).
-Utilizes significantly more paint
-Much more prep work required
-Can be more difficult to get into small or tricky spaces
-Time consuming clean up process
-Expensive equipment (not an area of concern unless you are doing it yourself).
-Requires excellent weather conditions

If you are a business owner seeking out commercial painting services JMA Painters would love the opportunity to bid out your project. At JMA Painters, we utilize the latest paint technologies and are skilled in a vast variety of application methods to get the best quality finish on each project. Contact us today for your free estimate. 

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