How to Repair a Defective Spray Can Nozzle

A spray can nozzle can easily become clogged with debris, especially if it is a spray paint can. Before you throw away the can, try to fix the nozzle. With paint thinner, a straight pin and a can of WD-40, you can repair the nozzle and not waste valuable product.

Remove the nozzle from the top of the can. It should pull off by hand, but gently use pliers if necessary.

Fill the can's cap with paint thinner, and soak the nozzle in it for three to four hours. If the can's cap is not available, then use a small plastic container.

Use a straight pin to clean the nozzle from the end that connects to the can. Do not stick the pin in the tip of the nozzle where the spray comes out, or you could damage the nozzle.

Scrub the tip of the nozzle with a brush or scrubbing pad and the paint thinner to remove any old paint.

Swirl the nozzle around in the paint thinner to remove any particles you may have dislodged in scrubbing the nozzle.

Insert the nozzle onto a can of WD-40 whose nozzle you removed. Spray the WD-40 through the nozzle to remove any remaining debris. Reinstall the nozzle on its original can.


To prevent a spray paint can nozzle from becoming clogged, turn the can upside down after using it and spray until the stream is clear. Then wipe off any paint from the tip of the nozzle. Save old nozzles that are in proper working order in case a nozzle cannot be cleaned.

Things You'll Need

  • Paint thinner
  • Small pin
  • Scrub brush or scrubbing pad
  • Pliers
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About the Author

Damon Koch has years of writing experience ranging from software manuals to song lyrics. His writing has appeared in software manuals for Human Arc and on the CDs "Small Craft Advisory" and "Impersonating Jesus." He also has worked in building maintenance since 2004. He has attended Lorain County Community College as well as Cleveland State University.