How to Use a Battery Powered Garden Sprayer?

Last Updated on October 2, 2023 by Kyle Whitley

How to Use a Battery Powered Garden Sprayer

Garden sprayers are a staple of every homeowner and gardener.  I have owned many hand pump or manual piston pump style sprayers to spray insecticides and herbicides around my garden and home.  If you have used an old school pump sprayer you know the hassles of constantly pumping your sprayer to keep a consistent spray pattern and pressure.  The answer as you know if you are taking a look at this post is to get a battery powered garden sprayer. Let’s take a look at how to use a battery powered garden sprayer.

ryobi battery powered backpack sprayer

Let’s face it manual pump garden sprayers are a hassle and can be difficult to use if you are older or have physical issues.  The constant need to pump to maintain the correct pressure and spray pattern is no fun.  If you have a larger yard or garden it becomes that much more of an issue as the pumping slows the chemical application process down.  Electric lawn equipment is on the rise and for good reason.  They are quiet, environmentally friendly, and require less maintenance.

Types of Battery Powered Garden Sprayers

There are basically two types of battery powered sprayers:

Handheld Sprayers –  is your go-to for applying herbicides, insecticides, and fertilizers in smaller spaces. They usually have sprayer tank sizes between 1 and 2 gallons.  Often handheld sprayers resemble the old style manual piston pump sprayers, but with an electric pump and rechargeable battery.  Most often contain a shoulder strap to make carrying the sprayer easier. RYOBI for example makes several models of hand held sprayers for residential use.

Backpack Sprayers – are sprayers that are designed to be worn on the back of the user.  The backpack is fitted with a water tank and pump system. They are larger capacity sprayers for spraying larger areas.  They usually have a tank capacity of around 4 gallons. Chapin‘s backpack sprayers are industry leaders one of their battery-powered backpack sprayers is shown below.

To get started using your new battery powered garden sprayer we need to get the battery or batteries charged

Charging the Battery Powered Garden Sprayer

Battery powered garden sprayers are of course powered by batteries, most are powered by lithium-ion style batteries.  Like the RYOBI backpack sprayer above,  your garden sprayer should have come with a charger.  Plugin your charger and attach your battery to the charger and let the battery charge to the recommended manufacturer specifications.  This could take as little as 30 minutes or up to a couple of hours depending on the size of the battery and the style of your charger.

Some sprayers have onboard batteries that are part of the sprayer.  Others have detachable batteries that are removable and replaceable.  Once the battery has been charged, it is time to attach your battery to your sprayer.

Powering up the Garden Sprayer

One thing to keep in mind is that you should not have the battery attached or the sprayer powered on when making adjustments to the sprayer or adding chemicals and water to the sprayer.

All battery powered garden sprayers have an on/off switch.  After the battery has been charged and attached if needed for your sprayer, turn the switch to the on position.  That is it really, couldn’t be simpler right?  The sprayer should be ready to dispense chemicals now if there is anything in the tank.  As usual, follow your manufacturer’s instructions on how to power on your specific device.

chapin battery powered backpack sprayer

Filling the battery powered garden sprayer tank

Battery powered garden sparyers garden sprayers can handle many types of chemical applications, from apply fertilizers, insecticides, herbicides, and weed killers.  All of these chemicals are applied via the tank on your battery powered sprayer.

Make sure you have the battery removed if applicable and power off prior to adding any chemicals or water to your sprayer tank.  Always, and I mean always mix the chemical as directed by the chemical manufacturer.

Pay special attention to the size of the spray tank as it makes a difference in how much chemical is used in an application. Also never overfill the tank as it causes a spill that can damage the sprayer or the battery. Generally, you should follow the below steps:

  • Remove the battery pack (if your sprayer has a removable battery pack)
  • Unscrew the tank cap and remove it from the tank
  • Fill the tank with the required amount of water based on your sprayer tank capacity and the number of chemicals you want to apply
  • Measure the amount of chemical you want to apply
  • Carefully pour the chemical into the sprayer tank
  • Screw the cap back onto the sprayer.  Make sure the cap is on tight.
  • Reinstall the battery pack if applicable

Make sure to clean the measuring container after you have gotten your sprayer ready.  It is also ok to pre-mix the chemicals if you want in another container prior to adding it to the battery powered garden sprayer tank.  I will often buy pre-mixed weed killer which I use with my sprayer that makes the process that much faster.

Battery powered garden sprayers that you can get at your local home center or hardware store are intended for the application of consumer-grade home and garden chemicals, so keep that in mind when using your sprayer.

Adjusting the Spray Nozzle

Most modern garden sprayers have nozzles that can be adjusted or come with replaceable nozzles that can be used to adjust the spray pattern.

Remove the battery if applicable from the garden sprayer.  Loosen the nozzle for a solid stream, and tighten the nozzle to a fan spray pattern. Use the solid stream for more precision spraying and the fan spray pattern to spray larger areas.

Pretty easy right!

Spraying Home and Garden Chemicals

So now we are down to what you really want to do with your battery powered garden sprayer, spraying chemicals.  Here are a few easy steps to get you spraying away.

  • Install the battery into the garden sprayer
  • Switch the sprayer to the ON position to start the sprayer motor
  • Aim the spray nozzle at the plants or objects you want to spray
  • Press the trigger and start spraying, release the trigger to stop spraying

Once you are down spraying your chemicals empty, clean, and drain your sprayer.  Always dispose of the unused mix based on the chemical manufactures recommendations.  Refer to your owner’s manual on how to correctly clean your sprayer, wand, and nozzles after each use.

One thing to note is that unless you are spraying very large areas, a single battery charge should power your sprayer for the entire spraying session.

Sprayer Operation Tips and Tricks

Using a battery-powered sprayer is just like using any other type of electric tool, you learn the tool as you use it and you pick up some ideas of what to do and what not to do with your garden sprayer.  Here are a few tips and tricks I have learned using my battery powered garden sprayer

  • Don’t point the sprayer wand at yourself or someone else.
  • Avoid spraying on windy days.  Overspray can fall on plants or objects that you don’t want to spray.
  • Spray downwind.  You don’t want the spray blowing back on you.
  • If the weather is warm, spray in the morning or late afternoon.  Heat can cause issues with the evaporation of the chemicals.
  • Wear gloves rubber or nitrile to protect your hands.
  • Never, never, never drink or eat when using the sprayer.

Most of these tips are common sense, but they will make your spraying experience much safer and less frustrating.

Keeping the Spraying Going

As you can see using a battery powered garden sprayer is a pretty straightforward process.  Charge the battery, turn on the sprayer, fill the tank, spray and clean up the sprayer.  Doesn’t get much easier than that.  Make sure to check the battery charge after each use, to keep the batteries in good working condition.

Garden sprayers are an essential tool in my lawn, garden, and home maintenance tool kit.  Electric lawn equipment is making yard work that much easier and having a battery-powered sprayer makes it easier to handle chemical applications in a fast, quiet, and efficient manner.  So get out there and start using that sprayer to make your yard, garden, and home that much better.

Battery Powered Garden Sprayer FAQ

How many gallons of water can a battery powered garden sprayer hold?

Most handheld battery powered sprayers, which are smaller capacity sprayers hold between 1 and 2 gallons of water.  Backpack style sprayers, which are obviously larger models hold around 4 gallons of water.

What if the battery pack in my battery powered garden sprayer dies?

It depends on what you mean by “die”.  If the battery runs out of charge, then recharge the battery and resume your spraying tasks.  It is always a good idea to have spare batteries around so you don’t have to stop and recharge.

If the battery actually loses charge, and that does happen from time to time, after many many discharge and recharge cycles, then it might be time to purchase a new battery.

Why is it important to clean, drain, and dry the nozzle after spraying chemicals with a battery powered garden sprayer?

Nozzles can become clogged with chemical residue after continuous use, so they need to be cleaned regularly.  Most modern battery powered sprayers have some sort of prefilter that will help filter any outside debris from the tanks.

Tanks should be cleaned with water at a minimum and should have soapy water ran through them for a more thorough cleaning.

Drying out the tank and nozzle keeps any metal parts from corroding and protects the pumps within the sprayer.

Can I use a battery powered garden sprayer if it’s raining?

While a battery powered sprayer would work in the rain, it is generally a bad idea to apply chemicals in the rain. The chemicals you are trying to apply will more than likely just run off with the rain and you will have to reapply.  Besides the environmental issues with adding more chemicals to rain run off,  you are wasting money on chemicals.

Does my battery powered garden sprayer work with all residential chemicals?

Pretty much any liquid chemical designed for garden sprayers can be used in your battery sprayer.  One caveat is powder chemicals are generally discouraged because they are abrasive and could damage sprayer parts.

How long does a charge last in my battery powered garden sprayer?

How long a charge lasts depends on how many tanks full of chemicals you apply.  For example, you may be able to run 30, 1-gallon tanks on a single charge of a 2ah battery on a handheld sprayer, but on a backpack sprayer, you might 10 -12, 4-gallon tanks on a single charge of a 2ah battery.  The larger the battery the more tank fulls.  Your charge and runtime will vary based on the size of the chemical tank and how many tank fulls you use.

What is the best way to clean and store my battery powered garden sprayer when I’m done using it?

Once you are done spraying, and after emptying your tank according to your manufacture and chemical instructions,  you should run clean water through the sprayer.  After you have run water through the tank, sprayer, and nozzle,  you should again drain the tank.  Remove the lithium-ion battery from the sprayer, recharge the battery as needed.  The sprayer should never be stored with the battery attached.

Let the tank dry and remove any surface moisture from the wand, hose, and nozzle.   I usually leave my tanks out in the sun for a little while to allow moisture to dry up, you can also hang the tanks upside down to allow any further moisture to drain out of the tank prior to storage.

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