How to Thin Kilz Primer for Spraying? 6 Easy Steps

If you are a homeowner then you must be acquainted with the brand Kilz and its primer. This multipurpose primer is a sealer, stain-blocker, and also a great deodorizer. However, its consistency may seem to you a bit thick in the first place so you may need to ask how to thin Kilz primer for spraying.

Well, it is necessary when you find the tip of the paint sprayer is clogged. There is a varying type of Kilz with different thicknesses and consistency. However, you still may need to thin the one you own for the viscosity of the primer. And for that, you can use a little amount of mineral spirit. You can also use water for this purpose and stir the components very well.

Nonetheless, the thinning process is safe only before you paint it. Moreover, it does not hamper the primer’s quality. So, to know in detail, bear with us till the end.

Solvents to Use to Thin Kilz Primer

best paint sprayer for kilz

Paint SprayerProsCons
Wagner Control Spray Max HVLPAdjustable flow control, suitable for a wide range of projects, easy to cleanMay require thinning Kilz primer for optimal results
Graco Magnum X5 Airless Paint SprayerHigh-pressure system for quick and even coverage, suitable for large projectsRequires more setup and cleaning time compared to HVLP sprayers
HomeRight Finish Max C800766 HVLPLightweight and portable, adjustable spray patterns, easy to useMay clog with thicker primer if not properly thinned
Fuji 2203G Semi-PRO 2 HVLP Spray SystemProfessional-grade performance, precise control, durable buildHigher price point compared to other options
Rexbeti Ultimate-750 HVLPAffordable option, adjustable flow and spray patterns, suitable for small to medium projectsMay require more frequent refilling for larger projects

We have already mentioned that there are Kilz primers of different thicknesses. However, according to the base, there are two types of primer. One is latex or water-based primer and the other is oil-based primer.

So, it is easy to predict that you can use water to thin the water or latex-based Kilz primer. On the other hand, for the oil-based one, you should use only organic solvents. It is because oil-based components require a bit of harsh solvent to deal with the reason.

However, not every organic solvent will work effectively on thinning the components of oil-based Kilz primer. Therefore, professionals suggest using mineral spirits for thinning purposes.

Again, using denatured alcohol instead of mineral spirit is also a tested choice. So, yes, you can go for any one of them.

One of our articles –How to Fix Polycrylic Problems.

How to Thin Kilz Primer for Spraying – Complete Guide

How to Thin Kilz Primer for Spraying

Well, for priming a larger exterior you can use an electric paint sprayer that is also known as an airless sprayer. Many also try spraying Kilz with HVLP. The machine is also a kind of sprayer.

See also  How To Install Lag Bolts Into Studs In 4 Easy Steps

However, the process of thinning Kilz is not tough but a bit tricky. That is why for your convenience we have come up with a step-by-step guide. Let’s get to the process.

Materials Required

  • A container
  • Stirring stick
  • Mineral spirits or water
  • Sprayer
  • Respirator mask
  • Gloves

Step – 1: Removing Some Primer

 This is the very first step to obtain if you own a large container of Kilz primer and thinking of spraying the exterior. Take around 1.5 cups of primer to the container from the gallon. However, the measurement varies according to the size of the paint container.

However, here you can adopt two ways of starting the process. Whether you can first separate the primer amount you may need in a bowl or bucket and then work on it. Or, you can separate the amount you will not need in a bucket and work on the remaining components of the primer container. So, it is totally up to your wish.

Step – 2: Add the Thinning Materials

Now, as we have mentioned earlier, you can use water or mineral spirits as thinning materials depending on the Kilz primer type. Whatever materials you are taking, make sure you have maintained the right ratio.

Generally, you will not need more than 1 ½ pints of mineral spirits or water or other solvents per gallon of primer.

Step – 3: Stir Properly

Here comes the most important part, only stirring properly can bring you the desired result. After adding the thinning material by maintaining a proper ratio, stir the components properly. Keep stirring until the thinning material is completely mixed into the primer components and you cannot separate them.

Again, if you find the thinner did not mention the ratio guide, then take only a pint of Kilz primer from the container and replace it with the same amount of water. Then follow the stirring method.

Step – 4: Load into the Paint Sprayer

When you are done stirring properly, you can proceed to the next step of the process. For that, take some amount of the thinned Kilz primer into the sprayer you are going to use for testing purposes. First, spray it on test material. If you realize the product is taking time to be sprayed out then you may need to thin it more.

However, the Kilz container should come with a loading instruction on the label. Thus, follow the instruction and load the primer into the sprayer accordingly.

Step – 5: Spray on the Object

Finally, when you are done testing the sprayer and everything seems alright, it is time to spray on the surface of your desired object. However, spraying Kilz primer is also a bit tricky. So, you have to be very careful with the spraying process as well.

See also  Can You Use 15W40 Instead of 10W30?

Step – 6: Repeat the Process

In case, you have removed some primer from the container in the first place, you can thin it again. Put back 1 ½ or 2 cups of the removed Kilz primer to the can and add around one or half ounces of water to it.

Then stir the mixture with a wire whisk until you achieve the same thin consistency. When you get it, refill your pain sprayer as per the need.

Nonetheless, it is obvious that a thicker primer requires more thinning for spraying properly. Otherwise, you will find a clogging problem. Consequently, spraying primer will not be smooth. It will somewhat frustrate you in fact. 

One of our articles –How to Finish Blue Stain Pine.

How to Spray Kilz Primer

How to Thin Kilz Primer for Spraying

Kilz primers are best for pre-treating any surfaces of wood, ceiling, plaster, or brick. However, now that you know how to thin Kilz primer, you should also acknowledge the spraying process.

First of all, take the can of the primer on a flat and secured surface. Then open the lid of the container carefully with the help of a flat-head screwdriver.

Secondly, stir the Kilz primer compound properly so that all the components are incorporated very well. A proper stir will reflect a thick and creamy consistency of the compound.

Thus, thirdly, you will need to thin it. For the thinning purpose, follow the step-by-step method we have just mentioned above.

Then, select the best possible sprayer and inspect each part of it, especially the nozzle tip, mesh size, and spray pressure. For your information, the standard sprayer for this purpose should come with a mesh size of about 60 that can offer an ideal pressure of around 1800 to 3000 PSI.

Moreover, it should have tip sizes of around 15000 to 21000 tips. When everything seems alright, fill the sprayer with the newly thinned Kilz primer.  

Now, you will have to prepare the surface where you are going to spray the primer. Surface preparation is very important for getting a perfect and smooth result.

Thus, scrape off the old paint from the surface and clean them properly. You can also adopt the sanding method to make the surface more adhesive to the paint.  

Coming to the next important step, spray the primer over the surface. Make sure you are spraying evenly over the surface. To make the coating even, make wider and steadier strokes. Such a method will not allow the primer to run over the surface.

Finally, if needed, apply a second coat. Some surfaces may require a second coat due to heavy damage or intensely stained before.

One of our articles –How to Dull Shiny Silicone Caulk.

See also  Behr Vs Cabot Deck Stain : Which Is Best?

Can you add water to kilz primer?

Yes, water can be added to Kilz primer for thinning, but it may affect coverage and adhesion, so it’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and test on a small area before applying to the entire surface.

Can you use kilz in a wagner paint sprayer

Kilz primer can be used in a Wagner paint sprayer, but it may need to be thinned for optimal spraying consistency, and it’s recommended to consult the Wagner paint sprayer’s user manual for specific instructions on thinning and application.

Can you thin kilz 2 primer?

Kilz 2 primer can be thinned, typically with water, to achieve a better spraying consistency. However, it’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the specific Kilz 2 primer product you are using, as the recommended thinning ratios may vary.


Do I need to thin Kilz primer for spraying?

Kilz primer is known for its heavy-duty feature. You can brush, spray, or even roll the primer on a surface according to your need. However, for spraying purposes, you must have to thin the paint because of its viscosity. It helps in an effortless spraying of primer. However, for applying with a brush or roller, it is not necessary to thin the Kilz primer.

How do you dilute primer for spray?

Basically, diluting primer is the same as thinning it. Just add a bit of water for latex primer or mineral spirits for oil-based primer and stir thoroughly. Gradually, you will get your primer diluted.

What is Kilz primer, and why should I thin it for spraying?

Kilz primer is a type of paint that can be used to cover stains and prepare surfaces for painting, and thinning it for spraying helps to achieve a smoother, more even finish.

What is the recommended ratio for thinning Kilz primer for spraying?

The recommended ratio for thinning Kilz primer for spraying is typically 10-15% of the volume of the primer.

Can I use water to thin Kilz primer for spraying, or should I use a different solvent?

It is recommended to use a paint thinner or mineral spirits instead of water to thin Kilz primer for spraying.

How should I mix the Kilz primer and solvent for spraying?

Mix the Kilz primer and solvent according to the recommended ratio, and stir the mixture thoroughly before spraying.

What type of sprayer should I use for spraying thinned Kilz primer?

An airless sprayer or HVLP sprayer is recommended for spraying thinned Kilz primer.

Do I need to wear protective gear when spraying thinned Kilz primer?

Yes, it is recommended to wear protective gear such as a respirator, gloves, and goggles when spraying thinned Kilz primer.

How many coats of thinned Kilz primer should I apply, and how long should I wait between coats?

Apply two coats of thinned Kilz primer, waiting at least four hours between coats.

Can I use thinned Kilz primer on all types of surfaces, or are there some that it should not be used on?

Thinned Kilz primer can be used on most surfaces, but it may not be suitable for some types of plastic or vinyl.

How should I clean my sprayer after using thinned Kilz primer?

Clean your sprayer with the recommended solvent immediately after using thinned Kilz primer.

What are some tips for achieving the best results when spraying thinned Kilz primer?

Some tips for achieving the best results when spraying thinned Kilz primer include maintaining a consistent distance from the surface, using overlapping strokes, and using a high-quality sprayer and nozzle.