Written by Terry Smith

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UK’s best garden sprayers TESTED that are heavy duty for high pressure

This article was last updated on April 23rd, 2022 at 6:25 am

You probably would be surprised to know, but in my personal testing, I actually favoured a garden sprayer over a fence sprayer for some fence paints. And that goes for shed paint too. No power requirement, a reasonably even spray, and miles quicker than a brush makes this an unlikely favourite – it was just a bonus that my Spear & Jackson Pump Action Pressure Sprayer cleans up nicely and had no problems spraying the weed killer in that test too. After using my garden sprayers for so long and effectively as I have. I’d like to share a few thoughts from my experiences.

Spear & Jackson Pump Action Pressure Sprayer – my trusty sprayer I’ve used for years

Versatility and mobility are two words that come to mind when I think of garden sprayers.
 They are versatile because they are able to help you distribute water, fertilizer, fungicides, pesticides, wood preservers, stains, teak oil, and paint, onto the parts of the garden that need them most. Most quality garden sprayers make things easy with a shoulder strap, decent pump compression for even high pressure, and have measurement markings on them to make sure that you use the correct amount of the chemicals and a variable nozzle from a squirt to fine spray also helps prevent you using too much – though I caution against a mist with fungicides without proper PPE for pesticides. I think of mobility when I think of garden sprayers as you don’t need to connect them to a mains water supply like a tap when you are using them. You simply fill the tank to the desired level and then either carry them in your hand, or on your back with the help of a harness, or pull them around on wheels. The most common design is the compression garden sprayer, where you activate the pump handle on top of the sprayer to build pressure and then use the hose and spray nozzle until the pressure needs to be topped up again.

So with that in mind, here are my top picks for the best garden sprayer:

Best garden sprayer: my top picks from 15 years experience and personal use:

Best garden sprayer: Spear & Jackson Pump Action Pressure Sprayer – best of the best garden sprayer and my go to for weed killers, fence paints and stains, as well as sheds. This is personally tested and proven to hold pressure for ages when spraying weed killer

Best back-pack garden sprayer: Faithfull Pressure Sprayer Knapsack 16L – best if you need a large garden sprayer

Commercial heavy duty pick: Faithfull Pressure Sprayer Knapsack 16L

Budget: Garden gear pressure sprayer

What you should be considering when buying a garden sprayer

There’s a few really important things to think about when buying a garden sprayer. They are definitely not all equal. The crucial thing for me is even pressure and compression so you get an even spray. Then there’s size, container thickness, shoulder straps, pressure release valves, and all important variable nozzle settings to change your flow from a squirt right through to a full on mist. So with that in mind let’s look a little close at some of those issues.

Size

Size is an important factor – are you looking for a small medium or large sprayer? If it’s large there’s no question you go for the the Faithfull Pressure Sprayer Knapsack 16L. If you’re after mid size for weed killer for example, then the Spear & Jackson or the Hozelock sprayer is ideal.

Faithfull Pressure Sprayer Knapsack 16L – backpack sprayer is huge

The Faithfull is definitely for commercial work and it really packs a punch too!

Pressure translates into spray

It’s important to remember not all pressure pots are equal. The more pressure your garden sprayer can hold, the better it’ll be equipped to provide an even spray. My Spear and Jackson is considerably more powerful than the average. And on that note, you have to watch for over pressurising your sprayer – in the past I’ve broken cheap ones pumping them too much. Just wait for resistance to build as you pump – you’ll feel it and you’ll feel what pressure is sensible. Then you can adjust the nozzle to workout how you want to spray. Let’s look at the adjustable nozzle and I’ll include a video of the pressure and the nozzle adjustment below.

Adjustable nozzle for a variable spray setting

One of the biggest things on the spray nozzles is the adjustment. My Spear and Jackson really works for that. In fact it is extremely sensitive and therefore takes a bit of getting used to. Even though I’ve used mine for years this still happens:

As you can see it doesn’t take much getting used to and very easy to use – but remember not to spray weeds with a mist too fine in windy conditions as a herbicide in the lungs is not good! So always aim on the cautious side, and with Creocote I don’t care how rough it looks, I let it spurt out – there’s no way I am ingesting those fumes again. I felt really rough even though I wore a mask. So now I let it squirt out and run. No problem with that. I do not set the nozzle fine:

Here are, what we consider, the seven best garden sprayers reviewed for you. We’ve chosen products that we think give you the best value for money, and that are affordable for everyone.

Pressure release valve

The next thing to consider is the pressure release valve. You want to release the pressure gradually as the main pump section can be very difficult to open if there’s too much pressure. Whereas the smaller valve is relatively easier to open and control. Here’s a close up look at that valve:

Spear & Jackson Pump Action Pressure Sprayer – pressure release valve

Shoulder strap

Most come with a shoulder strap but some are too short. The cheap garden sprayer I have doesn’t comfortably loop over my other shoulder, whereas the Spear and Jackson has a longer strap and is far more comfortable to wear – it’s only when you test many of these sprayers that you realise just how useful they can be! Here is me demonstrating just how long this strap really is – it’ll comfortably go over any shoulder:

Spear & Jackson Pump Action Pressure Sprayer – decent length strap comfortably sits on shoulder

It’s got variable straps too so if you’re shorter or prefer it up higher then no problem at all.

With those points looked over – here’s a rundown of the best garden sprayers:


When I initially wrote this review a couple of years ago I had this best-selling product from Spear & Jackson. It is our first garden sprayer review and it is available on Amazon and is still the best garden sprayer.
 It has a 5 litre translucent tank that has markings to help you get the right mix of any non-viscous soluble or water based products that you wish to use. You can even shoot Creocote through this garden sprayer as I demonstrate here:

Connected to the tank by a 1300mm hose is the plastic watering lance that measures 560mm, giving you a decent amount of reach for getting at those hard to water spots. The wand is adjustable and will give you either a jet, wide spray or a fine mist. The jet isn’t super powerful but for weed killer, specifically pet friendly weed killer, it is superb and holds a decent spray for ages, just take a look:

The trigger can be locked in the ‘on’ position for when you are doing a particularly long spraying session to save you aching hands. Wasting water should always be something we mean to avoid, and Spear & Jackson have included a water flow regulator in this garden sprayer for just that purpose.

To prevent premature damage by the user, the pump piston has been given a well lubricated o-ring, and this also helps keep the pumping action smooth and easy. There is also a pressure release valve to stop you accidentally over pumping and damaging the sprayer.

An adjustable shoulder strap has been included to aid you in carrying the weight of the tank around your garden and allowing you to have two hands free.

  • Low price but good quality plastics
  • Well marked bottle for measuring and mixing
  • 1300mm hose and 560mm wand with adjustable spray
  • Easy pumping action thanks to the O-ring that also prevents wear and damage
  • Lockable trigger for prolonged spraying and water flow regulator
  • Shoulder Strap to aid in mobility
  • Pressure release valve will prevent accidental damage


The Hozelock multipurpose pressure sprayer is another best-selling product on amazon, but is a fair bit more expensive than the Spear & Jackson model above, and is priced at around 27 pounds at the moment, which is a saving of 54% off the recommended retail price.

So what do you get for the extra money?

Well, overall the quality is just better. The materials used for example, are stronger and more robust than cheaper models, especially the main bottle and pump handle. Even the lance, if a little on the short side, feels stronger and more durable. I would recommend buying a telescopic lance from Hozelock for 10 quid extra to give you better reach unless you’re only thinking of spraying at waist to shoulder height. A problem with a lot of garden sprayer tanks is that there is always some liquid left in the bottom that you can’t use, but Hozelock have managed to design this model so that you get every blast drop out of it.

Hozelock Multi Purpose Pressure Sprayer

As mentioned, the pump handle is large and heavy duty, and also smooth in operation. About 20 pumps is enough to give you very good spraying pressure for a fair while and there’s an integrated pressure release nozzle for safety. A nice feature is that this garden sprayer has a separate filling space so you don’t need to unscrew the pump handle. The tank is translucent and is graduated to help with the correct levels. An integrated dosing cap also helps with getting your mixes right.
 Instructions are printed on the tank, and a holder for the hose and wand are also part of the design, as well as a shoulder harness.

  • Very good quality. Strong and robust
  • Wide base for stability when filling and pumping
  • Designed so you can use every last drop of fluid in the tank
  • Separate filling hole, no need to unscrew the pump handle.
  • Large and heavy duty pump handle for easy operation
  • Shoulder harness included
  • Space on tank for storing wand

If you have a large garden and need something that will keep you spraying for a long time, then this knapsack garden sprayer from Faithfull might the right tool for you. First of all, it has a large 16 litre capacity tank so you won’t have to stop to refill unless you your garden is enormous when compared to my favoured Spear and Jackson as well as being a backpack! Here’s a look at that:

Faithfull SPRAY16AV Pressure Sprayer Knapsack 16L – backpack sprayer

Another handy feature is the fact that you can use the hand pump to pressurise this garden sprayer on the go without having to take the backpack off. This keeps things moving fluidly and really is a time and energy saver. The tank has a good sized filling mouth with a removable filter.

The tank and other parts aren’t made out of the same quality plastic as the Hozelock, but if you spend a few minutes before you use this sprayer to screw everything tight and check the components, you won’t get any leaks. With a 140cm hose and 90cm spray wand, you get plenty of range and reach, and the spray nozzle can be adjusted between 4 settings. There are also spare nozzle heads included in the pack.

The shoulder harness supplied with this 16 litre sprayer is ok, certainly better than our two previous reviews but because of the extra weight when the large tank is full, I’d recommend buying a better one with nice padding. This garden sprayer is available for under 30 pounds at the moment.

  • Large 16 litre tank means you don’t have to stop to refill
  • Keep this sprayer pressurized on the go, no need to take off the backpack
  • 140cm hose and 90cm wand
  • Spare nozzles including a double headed nozzle
  • 4 spray settings
  • Double shoulder harness included
  • Large filling mouth with removable filter

On sale for a penny under ten pounds is this garden pressure sprayer from Garden Gear. It has a five litre translucent tank with markers for you to see the level of the liquids inside, and can be used with any soluble fluids. 
The plastic construction is of a decent quality for the low price, especially the large d-shaped pump handle which feels particularly robust and easy to use.
The tank has a safety valve for releasing excess pressure and preventing damage which is fairly standard these days.

A 170cm hose is attached to wand that has a thick and comfortable handle with a lockable trigger. The hose nozzle is fully adjustable and gives you a selection of spray patterns to choose from. At only 655 grams, this is a lightweight product but of course it will get heavier once completely filled with liquid and that’s where the free shoulder strap comes in. This product comes with a 12 month guarantee.

  • Good quality for under 10 pounds
  • Large and robust pump handle is easy to use
  • Pressure release valve
  • 170cm hose and Spray lance has a comfortable handle
  • Lockable spray trigger
  • Fully adjustable spray nozzle
  • 1 year guarantee
  • Shoulder strap

A 2 litre garden sprayer is a good size for lighter gardening tasks such as spraying the underside of leaves or for use indoors. Their smaller size and weight means that they can be used in one hand and can be stored under the sink or anywhere else for that matter. This compact sprayer from Ansio does everything the larger models do. You can still use it to water, fertilize, spray pesticides, and fungicides. It still works on a pressure system that you need to pump up before use, and it still has an adjustable spray nozzle and pressure release valve, just like the others.

The difference is, this 2L garden sprayer doesn’t have a long hose or spray lance so it is best suited for smaller spraying jobs. It also doesn’t produce as much pressure as larger models, but that is a good thing if you are spraying indoors as it gives you more control and you won’t accidentally damage your plants and flowers.
 As we said, this is a lightweight garden sprayer that can be comfortable held and used in one hand. The large ergonomic handle and thumb trigger give you a good grip and operating position that feels natural.
 The plastics used in this tool’s construction are high quality and it comes with a 2 year warranty.

  • Compact and lightweight and perfect for indoor use or light garden work
  • Ergonomic handle is comfortable to hold
  • Good quality plastic construction
  • Pressure release valve for safety
  • Can be used comfortably in one hand
  • Easy to store away

6. Solo 5L 45psi Piston Pump Manual Pressure Sprayers with Spray Lance

This 5 litre garden pressure sprayer from makers Solo has been designed with a 3 bar operating pressure to keep you spraying for longer between pumping stops.
 The 270 cubic cm pump has a strong handle and a smooth action and doesn’t take long to get to full pressure. Once fully pressurized, the sprayer will be able to operate until the 5 litre tank is almost empty. There is a space on the handle to securely store the spray wand when you are not using it

A ribbed handle on the 50cm spray lance keeps your grip secure and two spray nozzles are included with the sprayer, a flat jet and a hollow cone. You can quickly stop the nozzles spraying by simply twisting them which is handy.
 The transparent tank is made from UV proof polyethylene so it’s durable and doesn’t leak, and it also has a good sized filling aperture that can be used for cleaning the tank out.

This is a good quality garden sprayer, made in Germany and has Viton seals, ensuring a leak free gardening experience.
 This garden sprayer’s dimensions are 19 x 19 x 50 cm and it weighs 1.5 Kg. There is a shoulder strap included to help handle the weight.

  • Good quality garden sprayer
  • 3 bar operating pressure means you can work for longer
  • 50cm spray lance has a good non slip handle and lockable trigger
  • Large filling aperture can also be used for cleaning the tank out
  • Large pump handle works smoothly
  • 2 spray nozzles included- flat jet / hollow cone
  • Free shoulder strap

So, there you have it. Our best garden sprayers reviewed for you. We hope you have enjoyed reading our reviews and have somehow aided your decision. If you want to know more about any of the products, simply click on the links we have helpfully provided for you.

If you have time, please feel free to view our other pages and see our reviews of other gardening products.


About Terry Smith

I’m Terry Smith from gardentoolbox.co.uk, a professional landscape designer, hobbyist gardener, and barbecue fanatic with 20 years experience building and restoring. So as you go through my site you'll watch me document some of the professional garden installs I make as well as the major projects I take on at home. While sharing those experiences and guiding you, I'll be recommending some great tools I use to enable this along the way so you can really buy in confidence. Always feel free to pop me a message: info@gardentoolbox.co.uk

View all posts by Terry Smith

6 responses to “UK’s best garden sprayers TESTED that are heavy duty for high pressure”

  1. HI there,
    In the aim to reduce purchasing a new tool for every single task, I wondered if its possible to use an existing Cuprinol hand pump fence sprayer I already own, which has a 4L capacity, with patio cleaning solution? It frequently got clogged when using diluted paint, but I presume that would not be a problem with a patio cleaning solution (which I’m less keen to get on my hands). Although it does not have a pressure release valve, and I don’t know if the spray is adjustable.
    I have 220m2 of patios and paths to clean, and I wondered if the larger capacity ones spray quicker, or if its purely for the convenience of less refilling?
    I know its best practise to use anything poisonous in a separate watering can/sprayer, so do you have a different sprayer for fertilisers to weedkillers? Or do you give it a really good rinse?
    thanks!

    • Hi Anika,

      I often use my Spear and Jackson sprayer with creocote, wood preserver, and weed killer. I just clean it out between uses thoroughly. It’s way more effective in terms of delivery speed than other sprayers I’ve used. So far, no issues with the above, but I haven’t used it on patio cleaning solution after said chemicals. Sorry I can’t be of more help.

      Regards
      Terry

  2. If you plan on using patio cleaner with solvents in, such as sealer, then make sure you get a sprayer with viton seals, normal seals will not last long with chemicals like that.

    • Hi George,

      Interesting point. I have to say this hasn’t been my experience with perished seals. Though generally I give my garden sprayers a good clean out after use. I have experienced perished rubber on fuel lines of petrol strimmers and lawn mowers that have been left for a year or two though.

      Regards
      Terry

  3. Hi Terry. I have just purchased the Spear and Jackson garden sprayer and Cuprinol complete wood treatment after reading your recommendation’s. My shed is about 25 years old and of the tongue and groove variety. I have replaced some panels over time and now its time for some TLC. After reading the Cuprinol instructions it recommends painting after treatment. I have used ducks back in the past and thought it quite good. Do you think i can use the garden sprayer with the Ducks back as it would be far easier to complete the job with a sprayer as it is quite tight around the back of my shed. Regards Rob.

    • Hi Robert,

      Yeah painting after treatment is ok to seal in. There’s absolutely no chance of getting DucksBack through a sprayer unless you really water it down to the point you make a mess. If the area was hidden and you were concerned with protection only, I would look to creosote. If there’s an element of aesthetics to this, then get yourself a block brush with a pole for extension, or better, search for a reach around brush, if you are struggling to get in behind the shed.

      Regards
      Terry

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