Which Spray Booth Do I Need? (Dry Filter, Water Wash or Inflatable!)

Which Spray Booth Do I Need? (Dry Filter, Water Wash or Inflatable!) . Author - Andy Potts June 29th 2020 (reading time 3 mins)


spray booth

Inflatable Spray Booth housing a car ready for spray


If you're thinking about investing in a spray booth for your paint shop or for DIY spray jobs, there are three types to consider - dry filter, water wash and inflatable! The type of spray booth technology that you choose will come down to three main factors:

  • The quality of finish that you wish to achieve
  • Your production rates
  • Your budget

In this article, we'll look at each booth's key features and benefits and highlight important points to consider.

Dry filter spray booth

These are the most popular type of booth amongst professional sprayers for four main reasons:

  1. They are relatively cheap and easy to maintain - change booth filters (ceiling, extract, inlet, concertina) to the recommended schedule [link to schedule from Bruce].
  2. They produce high-quality finishes - provided air extraction is controlled via the back/top of the booth, and the spray booth filters are changed according to the recommended schedule.
  3. They are available in a vast range of modular sizes - the units are generally used to convert rooms into spray rooms, making them a popular choice.
  4. They can extract high volumes of fume-laden air to create a safer working environment - via special paper filters that trap any sticky airborne particles.

A note on keeping your dry filter spray booth walls clean

It is advisable to keep the booth walls, floors and ceilings covered in a peelable coating to collect excess overspray and reduce downtime when cleaning. This short video explains all:


Gramos Peelable Coatings for Spray Booths

gramos propeel


Gramos Propeel


Ultra Peelable Coating - 25 Litre


Water wash spray booth


Water wash booths are similar to standard spray booths except the back wall has a wall of water that catches overspray efficiently. The trapped spray particles drop into a water tough below, making them easy to remove. This system reduces downtime and clean-up, making it ideal for high volume sprayers with high production rates.

Cost considerations

Water wash spray booths are more expensive to install and maintain (due to water treatment costs) than dry filter setups. However, if you are a high-production manufacturer and use your booth constantly, water wash is more cost-effective than dry filter options.

The importance of sticking to a water treatment schedule

It is essential to treat the water in your booth in line with the manufacture's schedule. This is because stagnant booth water makes the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, which can:

  • Put your painters' health at serious risk (e.g. contracting Legionnaires disease from Legionella bacteria)
  • Reduce booth performance (e.g. bacterial odours clog components)
  • Damage booth components and reduce plant life (e.g. accelerated corrosion)
  • Increase downtime and repair costs due to the above

A water wash cleaning schedule involves periodically pouring chemical additives into the water to kill bacteria and to separate the water from solid paint particles, making the system easy to clean.

Our experts explain water wash spray booths in more detail in this short video:

Water Wash Booth Advice

spray booth tak kill


Gramos Tak Kill BC1


Biocide Additive - 5 Litre


Inflatable spray booths

Inflatable booths are designed for the amateur sprayer. These portable spray booths provide a mobile and cost-effective way of enclosing an item away from dirty external air. They're not suited to commercial use for two main reasons:

  1. Their customisation capabilities are very limited - for example, you can't add air extraction or spray booth filters, you can't add air extraction or spray booth filters, so it isn't possible to achieve a professional standard of finish without significant post-spray sanding and polishing.
  1. They have limited holding capacity (4mý max.) - an inflatable tent booth cannot accommodate larger items such as plant, agricultural machinery or other larger vehicles and machinery parts.

Don't forget your spray booth maintenance schedule


Whichever spray booth you choose for your paint shop, you will need to set up a maintenance schedule to:

  • Provide a safe working environment
  • Keep the booth working at optimal efficiency
  • Achieve the highest possible, blemish-free paint finish

The Ultrimax Total Paint Support Team can set you up with a maintenance plan for FREE. Contact us for details.

Take the hassle out of buying and maintaining an industrial spray booth

Ultrimax can support you to choose, buy, install and maintain a booth for your paint shop. Our Total Paint Shop Support service -TPS4 - can advise you on and supply you with products and services that cover all four bases of paint shop production:

Paint manufacture - we stock a vast range of industrial coatings to help you achieve your desired finish, including primers and both single-pack and two-pack topcoats.

Paint shop consumables - with over 45 years' experience in the industry, we understand the consumables you need and provide over 20,000 products online. Stay on top of your equipment maintenance schedules with our recurring order service for paint shop supplies, such as spray booth filters.

Spray equipment - we cover all of your spray equipment needs from gun nozzles to booths. Choose from a wide range of leading brands such as Graco, Wagner and Iwata.

Advice and training - with two NACE CIP Level 1 Inspectors in the team, you can rest assured the advice you receive is based on industry best practices. Our qualified paint technicians offer valuable training, suggestions and advice, ensuring you get the best finish for your project. We cover the UK and are on hand for demonstrations and trials.

Learn more about TPS4

Watch this short video to find out more about TPS4 and how it can benefit your paint shop:


Shop for industrial spray booths and consumables

Visit the Ultrimax store to shop for spray booths and consumables today:

spray booth types


spray booth filters




Shop Spray Booths


Shop Spray Booth Filters


See the range >>

Not sure which filters you need for your booth?

The video below provides a quick overview of the different filter types and changing schedules:


Get more information

Need more information before buying a booth?

Call: 01302 856666

Email: sales@ultrimaxcoatings.co.uk

Download brochure: Click here

Need More Advice?

Got a question?                                                           

Our Total Paint Shop Support Team can help you with any enquiries, from product advice to looking after each other in the face of COVID-19.

For more information:

Call: 01302 856666


Sign up for new updates as we release them: Sign up

YouTube: Need advice but like watching short videos? Check out our YouTube Help Channel.

Download:Ultrimax Catalogue


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