What is a Texture Gun?

Eric Tallberg

When considering home improvement, the right tool for the right job is essential. One tool that many do-it-yourselfers don’t often consider is a texture gun. This handy coating applicator is invaluable for quickly and inexpensively applying a textured finish to a wall or, especially, a ceiling.


A textured finish will effectively hide imperfections in a surface as well as provide the bumpy surface found on most ceilings. The textured effect on the ceiling of a room is most often a matter acoustics as opposed to aesthetics. A textured ceiling will help cut down on echoing in the room.

A texture gun resembles an ordinary paint spray gun in that it consists of a hopper or container to hold the material to be sprayed, a pump and a nozzle to direct and regulate the thickness of the spray. For larger jobs, there are compressor equipped texture guns that use compressed air to force the texture paint from the hopper through the nozzle to the surface. Smaller jobs require only a self-contained texture gun with nozzle, hopper and hand pump.

In addition to applying regular textured ceiling paint, a texture gun can be used to spray drywall, glitter, waterproofing for foundations and acoustic finishing material. There are even models for exterior use which will give a building a stucco effect or provide the look of a cement facade.

Most texture paints are manufactured by adding an aggregate, usually vermiculite or polystyrene to ceiling or wall paint. This aggregate is of varying fluidity or thickness depending on its use. The nozzle of the texture gun contains an adjustable front plate with various sized openings. The holes are obviously larger than on a regular paint sprayer to allow for particle size and the thickness of the coating.

As with an ordinary paint sprayer, use of a texture gun is very simple. First, prepare the area to be sprayed, load the aggregate into the hopper, test the gun on a small area of the surface and adjust the nozzle as needed. To spray, stand some three to four feet (about 1 meter) from the surface and begin painting. It is always a good idea to occasionally agitate the aggregate while working to keep it fluid.

Do not neglect to clean all the components of the texture gun, or any type of spray gun, when the job is finished. Most paint and aggregates are designed to dry fairly quickly and it’s very difficult to clean dried material from the nozzle of a texture gun.

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Discussion Comments


I used a drywall texture gun to apply what is called “orange-peel” texture to my living room and kitchen walls. Many Mexican restaurants with decorative interiors have this kind of textured wall, and I find it very beautiful.

I knew that a small texture gun would not be powerful enough for this huge task. I need one powered by an air compressor. Since these are expensive, I figured it would be cheaper to rent one.

I went to a place that rents out appliances and tools, and I rented the texture gun for what I consider a reasonable price. It sure was less than it would have cost me to buy one. I don't plan to texturize any other rooms in my house, so I shouldn't need to use one again, anyway.


I applied both glitter and texture to my daughter's ceiling using a texture gun. For the first section of ceiling, I neglected to wear a mask over my nose and mouth. I quickly learned that I needed one.

Inhaling that stuff can make you cough a lot, because it irritates the lining of your airways. I know I did a little bit of damage before wising up, but at least I didn't do the entire ceiling without protection.

We have hardwood floors, so my daughter was hearing echos from her television set. The textured ceiling stopped this, and the glitter gave her something pretty to stare at while falling asleep in the glow of her blue night light.


@OeKc05 – You were right when you assumed it would be cheaper for you to do it yourself. Texture guns are not that expensive, and you won't have to pay anyone for labor.

I got a sizable texture gun for only $20. It has a 1.5 gallon hopper, so I don't have to refill it often, if at all.

The hopper looks like the top half of a carton of bleach. It comes to a point and has a handle on one side.

There are three different sized nozzles that I can attach to this texture gun, so I can use it for different jobs. I made my porch waterproof with it, and I loved being able to do it so easily all on my own.


I am going to be putting a waterproof coating on my deck as soon as the construction company finishes building it. They would have done it for me, but I didn't want to pay what they were asking for it. I believe I could do it cheaper myself.

I have not yet bought a texture gun, and I don't know much about them. Can anyone tell me how much I can expect to pay for one large enough to coat my deck? I certainly hope it's not too much, because if it is, I might have made a mistake in telling the crew I don't need their texturizing services.

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