Do you feel more comfortable with a paint roller than a paint sprayer but still wish for a faster solution to painting a room?
Then, you are going to love the idea of a power roller, just like the Wagner Smart Sidekick.
An electric roller automatically coats itself with paint through a tube that runs from the rolling brush directly into the paint can.
If you’ve read our article on paint sprayers vs roller, you’ll know the most time-consuming part is constantly reapplying to the roller.
Well, this cuts out the time that you’d otherwise spend on getting an even coating on a manual roller and it is also less messy.
Wagner paint sprayers are trusted by many, but they also produce a power roller series; the Smart Roller. It has the familiarity of a conventional paint rolling brush and the greater efficiency of a paint sprayer.
Read on for our Wagner Smart Sidekick review and whether it is the right tool for you.
Here’s What It Can Do At a Glance
- Auto-Feed Control provides constant even coating
- Quick Release Handle for attaching accessories and new rollers
- Suitable for oil and latex paint types
- Click-Attach Arm suitable for 1 – 5 gallon paint cans
About Wagner Smart Power Roller
The Smart Sidekick is the most advanced tool in the smart roller range by Wagner. It is an electric paint roller with a detachable arm that directly fixes on paint cans which eliminates the need for any trays or extra paint holders.
The paint flows through a 15-foot long hose directly to the roller. Inside the roller are small holes that create an even spread and so results in a perfect coating without any effort.
This is a time-saving tool for DIYers looking to cover large rooms or multiple rooms. By not having to continuously return to the tray you are cutting down on time but also on messiness.
This tool s a great alternative to paint sprayers which require more practice and control for the desired results. DIYers will feel more comfortable with this format since the application is the same as with a manual roller.
Here’s the official promo video from Wagner on the product. You can find the datasheet here if you need more in-depth info.
Key features of the Wagner Smart Sidekick
Time Saving Roller
The time spent on getting an even coating on the paint roller might not be your initial consideration when calculating how long a job will take, especially when it’s uneven such as painting popcorn ceiling.
That is until you have tried an electric model that completely eliminates the need for a tray.
The Smart Sidekick has an automatic feed from the paint can to the rolling brush. A 15-foot hose suctions the paint straight from the can and spreads it out evenly on the roller through small internal holes.
This way, you never have to stop and walk back to the tray for a new coating. You can leave the paint can at a safe distance and work the walls at a continuous pace.
(don't worry, button opens a new tab)
Adjustable Length with Easy Setup
Setting up the kit is quite easy because there are limited parts. The package includes a hose, electric roller with on/off controller, and the main component that attaches to rims which is also where you pull the electrical cable out of.
Attach the main component to an open paint canister using the clicking arm, place the hose inside and plug the device into any regular home wall outlet. The automated system slowly sends the paint towards the roller where it spreads for a controlled coating.
The hose is 15 feet long which is already a decent length for home improvement jobs. However, if you have high walls or larger rooms, you can easily add length with a detachable extension pole.
Easier Cleaning than Paint Sprayer
Here at Paint Sprayer Guide, we don’t hide the fact that airless paint sprayers take a long time to clean. Now, this electric roller still requires a clean-up of about 10 minutes (excluding the time spent on cleaning the roller cover) but it is generally hands-off and still less time than with a sprayer tool.
The main component that needs cleaning is the tube. When using water-based paints you can simply clean it with warm soapy water but oil-based paints require a mineral spirit.
For the cleanup you need an empty waste bucket and a can filled with either soapy water or a mineral spirit, depending on the medium.
Place the roller inside the empty bucket, the suction hose inside the cleaning material and let it flow through until the hose is clear.
The instruction manual does warn that some paint will still be left inside the tube, even after extensive cleaning. However, the instruction manual also states that these remnants won’t affect the performance quality of the tool.
For Best Results, Replace the Roller Cover
Anyone who has ever done a painting job will know how difficult it is to get a completely clean roller. This is why many people simply opt for replacing the cover so that you can start fresh on each job.
That is still the wiser choice for this automated paint roller. The roller is detachable with the handy quick-release system so replacement is done in a matter of seconds
Here’s What We Loved
- Easy setup thanks to few parts
- Saves time on indoor paint jobs
- Saves paint because the automatic feed always ensures an even coating on the roller
- Detachable handle allows for accessories and quick replacements
- Cleanup requires little manual actions
Here’s What We Didn’t Love
- Can be difficult to get feeding tube completely paint free
- It is hard to clean rollers so you need replacements
The Wagner Smart Sidekick is a great painting device for larger DIY jobs. It lets homeowners perform their paint projects quicker without having to invest in more expensive tools like paint sprayers.
This tool is perfect for large rooms, high ceilings or whole house projects. It saves you time while also making sure that layers or paint are more even thanks to its automated system.
(don't worry, button opens a new tab)
The fact that it is an electric roller is attractive for DIYers but less suitable for professionals. For frequent jobs it makes more sense to invest in a paint sprayer, especially given that professionals are more skilled than the average person.