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Best Backpack Sprayer Reviews

Lawns, trees and plants in the garden are a delightful sight when we thrown back the curtains and look outside.

They also require protection against pests and weeds that can attack them.

When it comes to spraying various chemicals, the easy solution is to invest in a backpack sprayer.

There are two main types, piston and diaphragm sprayers.

Sprayers are wonderful for lasering down onto smaller areas with your chemicals without wafting the solution everywhere.

When you are fog spraying, it’s sensible to wear a mask. Some nozzles will also let you dab the spray which is much more controlled than the scattergun method of fog spraying.

Today, we’ll help you with choosing and buying the best backpack sprayer for your needs.

After this small buying guide, we’ll review 5 of the best backpack sprayers currently on the market.

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What Is A Backpack Sprayer?

A backpack sprayer is a unit that sits on your back leaving you hands-free to dispense whatever chemicals your garden needs.

Piston Sprayers

Piston pumps are recognizable by the up-and-down motion while spraying.

You pump the handle and this generates pressure in the chamber. This forces liquid into the wand ready for spraying.

Piston sprayers boast a superb pressure range so they really are effective tools.

Diaphragm Sprayers

These more expensive sprayers work in a similar way except with a diaphragm rather than piston pump.

Piston sprayers don’t cope well with overly harsh chemicals. Diaphragm sprayers are much more resistant.

Maintenance Is Vital

  • It’s essential to clean your backpack sprayer thoroughly after every use. Whether you use a commercial tank cleaner or plain water, giving things a good clean will prevent repairs and malfunction later down the line
  • If you need to store your sprayer when it’s cold, winterize it by adding some antifreeze. Stave off the chance of things seizing up in freezing conditions. Automotive antifreeze is less corrosive to your sprayer but it is nevertheless toxic. Proper disposal must be taken into account. The more corrosive RV antifreeze is non-toxic and can be ditched on the ground
  • Make sure you properly lubricate O-rings and seals

Calibrating Your Backpack Sprayer

There are 3 factors needing to calibrate your sprayer:

  1. Your speed when walking
  2. Output per minute of sprayer
  3. How wide the sprayer goes with each pass: swath width

How To Calibrate Your Sprayer

  • Clean off the sprayer and nozzle
  • Measure an area 18.5x18.5 feet. Time in seconds. Maintain constant pressure throughout for best results
  • Start timer again and spray into a container for the same amount of time with similar pressure
  • Using this measurement in fluid ounces, you can calculate how many gallons per acre. 18.5 feet is 1/128 acre

Following this method, you can correctly load your backpack sprayer with herbicide and you’re good to go.

Be sure to check your specific model’s instructions regarding best practice for calibration.

Safety With Your Sprayer

When dealing with a backpack sprayer capable of distributing a wide range of chemicals, safety is key.

Repair Kits

If you keep stock of some basic items like O-rings, gaskets, belts and filters, running maintenance is simplified. You can often clear up technical problems before they get worse if you have the parts on hand.

Pressure

If you plan to store your sprayer over winter in a cold climate, you’ll need to release the pressure.

What To Look For…

Intended Primary Use

Think about how you will mainly use your backpack sprayer…

If, for example, you plan to undertake woody plant control with oil-based carriers, you’ll need to look for pumps, seals and hoses resistant to these carriers.

Manual or Motorized?

Manual sprayers are a good budget option.

For large areas, though, motorized sprayers are highly convenient. You won’t need to keep pumping a handle in order to maintain pressure.

The downside of motorized backpack sprayers is that they’re more expensive, heavier and require more by the way of maintenance.

Piston or Diaphragm Pump?

An important consideration with sprayers is whether to opt for the piston or diaphragm variety.

With the cheaper piston pump, you’ll be OK with some herbicides but not all of them. Some dry herbicide formulations or dry-flowables cause the pump to wear out more rapidly.

In terms of ease of repair, durability and overall value for money, the diaphragm sprayer is your best bet.

Spray Wand

You want to minimize all leaks for the sake of your own safety and also to ensure the utmost accuracy when spraying.

Look for wands that will accept a wide range of tips.

Safety and Comfort

Your main safety goal here is to lessen your risk of being exposed to herbicides.

Look for a large pump handle and a comfortable grip for the spray wand. These areas will both help you to work without getting fatigued. This, in turn, will make your working environment safer.

In terms of comfort, look for padded straps that are resistant to the chemicals you’ll be spraying. A contoured tank is better for an ergonomic fit. When it comes to the rubber seals, make sure they can cope with softening or swelling. These are the principal causes of the pump breaking down or leaking.

Ease of Repairs and Durability

Look for a backpack sprayer made from dense polyethylene complete with UV protection. All accessories as well as the hoses and seals should be man enough for the particular chemicals you’ll be using.

Make sure that for components like the pump, any spare parts are easy to obtain in the event of things going wrong.

If you choose wisely, there’s no reason not to get a backpack sprayer that will last for years and will present no problem in the event of minor repairs.

So…

Now you have a good idea of what to look out for when conducting your research, it’s time to look at 5 of the best backpack sprayer reviews.

5 Best Backpack Sprayer Reviews 2017

First of a pair of sprayers from Chapin, the 61800 is a no-nonsense piece of kit that’s consistently recommended as an all-purpose, budget option.

The 4-gallon ProSeries is proof positive that Chapin produce top-notch sprayers that don’t need to break the bank.

The translucent tank has a wide, 4-inch opening. This makes cleaning and filling a breeze.

You can safely use all commercial fertilizers, weed killers and pesticides with the 61800.

A 3-stage filtration system in the backpack optimizes performance. The in-tank filter can be removed easily for cleaning.

With nice, padded shoulder straps, you can use the ProSeries for hours without straining yourself.

The poly wand is durable just like the brass nozzles.

If you’re looking for a rugged commercial sprayer you can also use at home in your garden without needing to spend a fortune, have a serious think about the Chapin 61800.


Pros

  • Great for home or commercial use to highly versatile
  • Compatible with pretty much all herbicides, pesticides and fertilizers. Even bleach is safe to use with the 61800
  • 3-stage filtration reduces change of clogging
  • Extremely cheap
  • Padded straps for backpack and cushioned grip make for comfy spraying
  • Pressure check inside tank for maximum convenience

Cons

  • Some leakage issues reported where external pump and spray head tube meet

Another piston pump sprayer from Chapin is up next, the 61900.

This is also a 4-gallon capacity sprayer which is great for use at home or on commercial projects.

It’s manually operated and has a stainless steel wand rather than the poly version supplied with the 61800.

The nozzles mean that you can choose from a number of applications.

Much like the 61800, the bigger brother also has a smart 3-stage filtration system combined with a wide opening to the tank so cleaning and refilling is a walk in the park.

You’ll be able to use a full range of garden care products with the 61900.

Whether it’s pesticides at home or fungicides on the boat, the Chapin 61900 is a highly versatile backpack sprayer that delivers superb results on a budget.


Pros

  • Very durable so built to last
  • Great 4-gallon capacity minimizing the need for refilling
  • Wide opening mouth so very easy to clean and refill
  • Less clogging with 3-stage filtration
  • Stainless steel wand durable and also long so no problem accessing awkward spots
  • Easy to view fluids with translucent tank
  • Pressure can be checked easily
  • Sprayer cap has handy basket to catch debris. This means nozzles will not get clogged up

Cons

  • A little more expensive than the 61800

Field King offer a range of a very reputable garden products and this diaphragm backpack sprayer is built to last.

This is a comfy, lightweight and easy to use backpack sprayer with a 4-gallon capacity.

The straps are padded along with the waist belt. With a molded lumbar support, you can enjoy even weight distribution.

The pump will pressurize very swiftly. You can get pressures of up to 150psi from the Field King.

The inline filter with locking shut-off valve helps to prevent clogging.

You’ll get 3 nozzles included.

There’s a 3-year warranty so you can buy this sprayer with confidence.

Diaphragm pumps generally deliver better results and if you are looking for a spraying experience which is straightforward and effective, the 190328 is well worth popping on your shortlist.


Pros

  • Diaphragm pump for optimum results
  • Very comfortable for easy, safe use
  • ​Great 4-gallon capacity for long periods of spraying
  • Pump pressurizes quickly returning up to 150psi
  • 3-year warranty for peace of mind
  • Great for most garden chemicals

Cons

  • A little more expensive

For a different approach, give the Chapin 63985 a try.

This backpack sprayer is a motorized model. The 20-volt lithium-ion battery is powered by the mighty Black & Decker so you can buy in complete confidence.

With this 4-gallon wide mouth, you’ll be able to spray for nearly 2 hours non-stop.

The 3-filter system has 2 filters inside the device with the third easy to replace.

A 6-inch super-wide mouth funnel lets you fill the tank quickly and easily without spillage.

Padded straps on the backpack, chest and waist make operating the Chapin a comfortable experience.

The tank is covered by a lifetime guarantee while the parts and accessories have a 1-year limited warranty.

The battery power provides a great boost but you will need to plan ahead. You have to charge the unit for 3 and half hours before spraying.


Pros

  • Motorized with 20-v battery for almost 2 hours of spraying
  • Brand you can trust
  • ​Rugged and built to last
  • ​Spray long distances, up to 35 feet no problem
  • ​Extra-wide 6-inch mouth makes filling safe and easy
  • Padded and comfy to use for long periods without feeling strained

Cons

  • A little expensive
  • Need to charge for 3 and a half hours before use

We’ll round out our reviews of the 5 best backpack sprayers with another battery-operated model from Hudson. This lead acid affair will reward you with up to 10 hours of continuous spraying. The trade-off is that you’ll need to charge it for a full 9 hours before use.

The 4-gallon tank is industry standard and means you won’t need to refill it too often.

The long fiberglass/poly wand has a curved tip to help with accurate spraying and the hose will not kink.

4 nozzles means you can choose the best spraying pattern for your needs.

You can enjoy pressures up to 60psi.

If you want a motorized backpack sprayer which is easy on the wallet while spraying large quantities of garden products without breaking a sweat, give some serious thought to the Hudson.


Pros

  • Lead acid battery will offer a remarkable 10 hours spraying
  • 4 different nozzles for full adaptability
  • ​Long wand for ease of use
  • ​Great value for money
  • ​Extra-large fill opening to lessen chance of spillage
  • Pressure up to 60psi

Cons

  • Need to charge for 9 hours before use

Wrap-Up

Dispensing chemicals in the garden need not be a headache.

You can choose from a wide range of backpack sprayers according to your own specific needs. As when purchasing any new garden tool, take plenty of time to inform yourself about what to consider when choosing one. Read plenty of user reviews to get an idea of some honest feedback.

Then…

Buy with confidence knowing you have got the best backpack sprayer for your needs.

Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any queries. We are always happy to help.

Happy spraying!

Dianne T. Lampe
 

Hi there, I’m Dianne! Welcome to a one-stop shop for your gardening needs. We aim here to offer up a very wide range of information about many aspects of gardening. From flowers and planting through to vegetables and accessories, find all the information you need here. We have a true passion for everything green. We’re highly motivated to develop this site continuously and offer any insights we can alongside useful facts and handy hints. Please get in touch and let us know what you would like us to cover. Thoughts and feedback are always welcomed. Enjoy!

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