Spray Nozzle Purchasing Guide

Spray Nozzles are designed to control the rate of flow, speed, direction, mass, shape and pressure of a stream of liquid that emerges. They can be used in a number of different ways, and determining which type of nozzle to use depends on the application and intended outcome.

Some of the most common uses for Spray Nozzles include:

  • Parts Washing
  • Dust Control
  • Powder Coating
  • Cooling
  • Misting
  • Coating

There are many factors to consider when designing a spraying system. The experts at BEX are always prepared to give recommendations that will save you time, money and hassle. However, this page is designed to help our customers have a better understanding of the many factors to consider when building or improving a spraying system. For basic troubleshooting, please see our troubleshooting guide.

For further assistance, please contact the BEX customer support team, and we will be happy to help you directly.

Connection Styles

NPT: The most common thread for pipes and nozzles in North America is the National Pipe Thread (NPT). This thread is different to the thread on a regular bolt and nut because the thread has a taper. These tapered threads are designed to lock together and seal when tightened.

BSPT: The standard threading style used in Europe and the U.K. is BSPT (British Standard Pipe Thread). This is similar to the NPT thread, but with some differences in the thread shape. Nozzles with BSPT threads are easily identified by a small notch on each corner of the hex on the nozzle.

NPT and BSPT are NOT compatible with each other, and confusing these styles could lead to leaky products or damaged threads.

Standard NPT and BSPT thread sizes include:

Quick Disconnect (Zip-Tip)

The quick disconnect, or Zip-Tip nozzle, is a two-piece system utilizing a nozzle body and a nozzle tip. The body threads into the source, and the nozzle tip is inserted by hand into the body with a quick, quarter turn clockwise. This allows for fast, tool free nozzle removal, making the system much easier to maintain and clean. Zip-Tip series are available in all standard and plastic materials, and can produce all standard spray patterns (flat, full cone, hollow cone, and solid stream). Zip-Tips are indicated with a "Z" before the Model ID (ie. ZFL is the Zip-Tip variation of the threaded FL nozzle).

Clip-On Connection

K-Ball Clip On

The K-Ball Clip On Connection System is a versatile mounting method allowing the user to install a wide variety of nozzles, enabling easy installation, replacing, and flexible options. Installation is done by drilling a 9/16" diameter hole into the pipe. A body and spring clip combination fits into the hole and snaps around the pipe. Ball and socket design allow for easy removal and positioning of the nozzle or eductor. K-Balls are available in multiple variations, allowing for many different spray patterns.

Threaded Ball and Adapter

The BEX threaded adapter and threaded ball can connect a threaded nozzle or eductor to a pipe, using the same installation method as the K-Ball Clip On system (thread sizes available in 1/8", 1/4" and 3/8").

The Threaded Ball is used as part of a K-Ball Clip On assembly, allowing BEX nozzles or eductors in compatible sizes to work in a Clip-On assembly. Just like a K-Ball Clip-On assembly, the ball can be adjusted by tightening or loosening the K-Cap, allowing for adjustable positioning.

The Threaded Adaptor is clipped over a 9/16" hole in a pipe, and does not require a K-Body or K-Cap. The nozzle is directly tightened into the adaptor, meaning it maintains a fixed position.


All of the products that BEX manufactures are available in a variety of materials. Deciding what material a nozzle should be made from is dependant on the needs of an application. Abrasion, chemical, and temperature resistance, as well as cost, are big deciding factors.

Some industry standards do exist. For example, all food related applications require either 316SS or PVDF to meet FDA inspection standards, while the printed circuit board industry prefers PVDF to handle the etching liquid. However, the most common materials used in industrial applications are Brass, 303SS, and 316SS.

The material of construction is added to the part ID to form a complete part number. For example, our model 1/4F8010 is available in almost 20 different materials. Once the selection of material is made, the code for the material is added to the end of the model number.

Material Material Code
Brass B
Steel I
303 Stainless Steel 3
316 Stainless Steel 6
316L Stainless Steel R
416 Hardened Stainless Steel 416
Hastelloy E
Titanium N
Monel O
Carpenter 20 C
Polypropylene L
Teflon T

If you are uncertain about which material is best for your application, please consult BEX customer service or a sales representative.

Standard Materials

The alloys listed as standard materials are used in the majority of BEX products, and are available for purchase in our online store.

Brass: A cost effective solution for most industrial applications. Brass is used where abrasion, corrosion, and temperature resistance are not a big concern.

Steel: A good solution for most industrial applications. This grade of steel is C12L14, which provides somewhat better abrasion resistance than brass, better temperature resistance than brass, but less corrosion resistance overall. Not all BEX products are available in this grade of Steel. (Material code I references Steel in BEX Spray Nozzles, and Cast Iron in BEX Eductors.)

303 Stainless Steel: A reliable solution for most industrial applications. 303 provides good abrasion resistance and better corrosion resistance than brass or steel. However, it is still susceptible to some corrosive environments. 303 is classified as an austenitic stainless steel.

316 Stainless Steel: An excellent solution for most industrial applications. 316 provides fantastic corrosion, abrasion and temperature resistance. This is the standard material used in food and pharmaceutical industries. 316 is classified as an austenitic stainless steel, and it is the highest quality of our standard materials. However, many specialty materials outclass 316 in resistance to corrosion, abrasion, and temperature, while also providing overall better performance.


Polypropylene: Polypropylene is a relatively inexpensive thermoplastic polymer, excellent for caustic cleaning and powder coating applications. It is the most common plastic material in the Bex catalog. Polypropylene provides very good chemical resistance, and moderate temperature resistance.

PVC: PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) is a cost effective, readily available material. It is ideal for applications that require good chemical resistance, where temperature resistance is less of a concern. There are some limitations to the products that can be made from PVC, due to the fact that they are machined instead of injection molded.

Teflon: Teflon provides the overall best chemical resistance out of all the plastic materials we offer. It is temperature resistant, but not particularly abrasion resistant. This material is typically used in food and pharmaceutical applications.

CPVC: CPVC is very similar to PVC, but provides significantly better chemical and temperature resistance.

PVDF/Kynar: PVDF (Polyvinylidene Fluoride) is a reliable thermoplastic typically used in applications which require resistance to solvents, acids, hydrocarbons and sunlight. It surpasses Polypropylene with regards to its abrasion resistance, and sometimes provides better chemical/corrosion resistance. Unlike Polypropylene, this material cannot be used for caustic cleaning.

Speciality Materials

Specialty materials are used in unique circumstances and applications. Bex is able to work with a wide variety of alloys and plastics to meet the needs of customers across all industries. Please note that these materials are not listed in our online store, if you would like a part made in a specialty material, please contact a BEX representative or our customer support team.

316L: 316L is extremely similar to 316, providing excellent corrosion, abrasion and temperature resistance. The biggest difference is that 316L is a low-carbon material, which makes it suitable for welding operations.

Hastelloy: Hastelloy is a nickel-based steel alloy which provides excellent resistance to corrosion, abrasion, and temperature. It is great in chemical applications due to its ability to prevent oxidization of the metal. This material is typically priced higher since it is difficult to machine.

SMO 254: SMO 254 is a austenitic stainless steel which provides fantastic corrosion resistance, and very good weldability. It is great at handling seawater, chemicals, and gas cleaning systems.

Titanium: Titanium is an extremely strong material typically used in aerospace technologies. It provides fantastic corrosion and temperature resistance. Since it is less dense than steel, it is slightly less resistant to abrasions. Titanium eductors are often used in oil and gas.

Monel: Monel provides excellent corrosion resistance, it is ideal for chemical plants using sulfuric acid and hydrofluoric acid.

Carpenter 20: Carpenter 20 was originally developed to prevent corrosion in sulfuric acid applications. It provides excellent corrosion resistance, while abrasion and temperature resistance are on par with other specialty materials such as Hastelloy.

Rulon 641: Rulon 641 is a plastic very similar to Teflon. It provides temperature and corrosion resistance almost equivalent to teflon, but it is more abrasion resistant.

416: 416 is an alloy which provides very good corrosion resistance and temperature resistance. It is four times more abrasion resistant than 316 when hardened.

Spray Pattern

The most common spray patterns on BEX spray nozzles are flat, full cone, and hollow cone. Each pattern offers its own advantages with respect to atomization, impact, and other properties.

Flat Fan

Fan shaped sprays produce a narrow, straight spray with tapered edges to permit overlapping of spray patterns. This is the most common pattern for a spray nozzle. Flat fans are produced in one of two methods; making the orifice elliptical in shape (F series), or deflecting the spray off a ramp (FP or FL series).

This type of spray is most commonly used in applications where the target is moving past the spray, such as on a chain conveyor, or in a car wash. Flat fans concentrate the impact of the spray in a small area, resulting in higher impact which produces effective cleaning.

This spray pattern is typically used in parts cleaning, metal washing, foam control, asphalt spraying, car washes, dishwashers, and more.

Bex products that produces a flat fan include F, ZF, BF, and FT series.

Hollow Cone

Hollow cone spray nozzles produce a round, low impact, hollow spray pattern.

Hollow cone patterns are achieved by introducing a swirling action to a stream of liquid by directing the flow around a swirl chamber (H series), or by using a 360° deflection ramp (like our YH series).

Hollow cone nozzles are often used for dust suppression and humidity control because of the small droplet sizes that they produce.

Bex products that produce a Hollow Cone spray pattern include H, HW, ILH, C, CW, YH, and PH series.

Full Cone

Full cone spray patterns produce a full round spray pattern with an even distribution. The spray is divided over a large area, resulting in a low impact rinse.

Full cone patterns are created in a few different methods, the most common one is by using an insert inside the nozzle to create a swirling action, such as in our S series. Alternatively, a full cone pattern can also be achieved by deflecting a stream of water off a tapered spiral, like our YS series.

Full cone nozzles are mostly used in applications where a rinse of a stationary target is required, such as printed circuit board etching. Typical applications may also include washing, chemical processing, casting, gas scrubbing and pollution control.

BEX products that produce a full cone spray include CCS, S, FS, HNS, SW, YS, and PS series.

This style of nozzle can also produce a square spray pattern. BEX products that produce a full square spray include SQ, GSQ, SWSQ, PSQ, and PSWSQ series.

Solid Stream

A solid stream spray delivers a straight spray and high impact. With a solid stream, all of the impact of the spray is concentrated in a small spot. The momentum or Kinetic energy has not been disturbed, resulting in a focused area of impact. This spray is typically used for high impingement applications in fibre cutting, metal washing, agitation, mixing, and more.

BEX products that produce a solid stream spray include F, ZF, STF, WF, WA, WN, and WT series

Flow Rate

The term "Flowrate" refers to the amount of liquid that a nozzle will spray within a defined time period.

BEX manufactures spray nozzles capable of handling flow rates from as low as 0.45 US Gallons Per Hour (GPH) up to models capable of 968 US Gallons Per Minute (GPM).

To put that into perspective, it will take some time to actually get wet spraying water at 0.45 GPH, whereas at 968 GPM, one nozzle can fill an Olympic size swimming pool in just under 11.5 hours.

Flow rates listed in the Bex catalog are for water in US gallons per minute (USGPM). In Europe, flow rate is expressed in liters per minute (LPM).

1 USGPM = 3.785 LPM
1 LPM = 0.264 USGPM.

Flowrate is directly affected by the pressure the water is sprayed at.

To find the flowrate at a different pressure compared to what you know, the following formula is used:

Viscosity will also affect the flowrate. Flowrates listed in BEX catalogs are for water. Higher viscosity liquids will have a lower flowrate.

Specific Gravity of the liquid also affects the flowrate. Here we have the formula:


Quantity will vary depending on how large the application is. Please contact us for more information.


Spray impingement, or "spray impact" as it is otherwise known, can be calculated using several different methods. The most widely used value with regards to nozzle performance is “impact per square inch.” However, it is dependent on spray pattern and spray angle. In order to calculate the impact per square inch for a given nozzle, you must first determine the theoretical total impact using the formula below:

impact in pounds per square inch is attained by solid stream nozzles and can be calculated using the formula:
1.9 x Spraying Pressure(PSI)

Spray Coverage


Coverages shown in this table are based on straight sided spray patterns. At low pressures the sides may curve in, as shown at the right, because of the acceleration due to gravity.

To find the width of a spray (W) at any distance (D), multiply the W/D ratio by the distance.