Whether you are a professional woodworker or enthusiastic DIY person, you’ll want the best belt sander available for the job in hand. Belt sanders are an extremely useful power tool to have in your tool collection, and after you’ve used one you’ll be wishing that you’d got one sooner.
A must have piece of machinery for using in home and professional remodeling and renovation projects, ideal for use on floors, doors, interior, and exterior wooden furniture.
Used by carpenters, builders, handymen, and DIY enthusiasts to perform a variety of woodworking tasks from smoothing and leveling wooden surfaces to heavy stock removal of varnished or painted wood.
Belt sanders with a wide sanding belt, are ideal for working on large surface areas, getting quick and efficient results.
Sanding belts come in a variety of grit grades, from a fine finishing grade up to a heavy course grade to cover all sanding job requirements.
The Best Belt Sanders Reviewed
|Editor’s Choice||Used For||Brand||Click Image to Read Review|
|Top Pick||Professional And Home Use||Makita 9403 4″ X 24″ Belt Sander|
|Alternative Top Pick||Professional And Home Use||Hitachi SB8V2|
|Best Budget Option||Light Professional And Home Use||TACKLIFE 7.5A 900W Belt Sander|
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Our Top Pick: Makita 9403 4″ X 24″ Belt Sander
Our Top Pick
Whether you’re a professional woodworker, DIY enthusiast or someone that just loves to work with wood, then this top quality belt sander with a 4 inch x 24 inch sanding belt is definitely the one to go for.
Perfect for home improvement and refurbishment jobs to large scale professional remodeling projects. It’ll work all day long for you if that’s what you need it to do.
The Makita’s powerful 11 amp motor is the secret to this hard worker, combine that with the electronic speed controller that ensures a constant speed even when working under load, and you have a very impressive piece of kit.
Included with this sander is an 80 grit abrasive sanding belt, so you can get working right out of the box. Stock removal is made easy with a speed of 1,640 ft per minute you can certainly cover a lot of ground quickly with this 4 inch wide sanding belt.
Keeping the 13 lb sander going in the right direction is easy thanks to the large front grip which also is great for maneuvering the 13-7/8 inch long belt sander into tricky areas, for instance, when you are sanding close to walls.
Sanding jobs create dust, and it’s very important that you always wear an appropriate dust mask whilst sanding.
You have two options here with how to take care of that dust, the Makita belt sander comes with a reusable dust bag which you can be moved 360 degrees so that it doesn’t get in your way when you are working.
You also have the option of being able to connect the belt sander to a vacuum extraction system if you have one.
We all know that when working with power tools that they can get a bit noisy, this belt sander is the quietest in its class and only emits 84 dB of noise when it’s working.
This is pretty amazing when you compare that noise level to most of the belt sanders out there, some advertised models don’t even show the decibel rating, and there’s a reason for that… they’re ear splittingly LOUD.
Remember, to avoid damaging your hearing, ear protection should always be worn when using any kind of noisy tools, even for short duration work.
What We Like:
- Great Build Quality – Ideal for home and site work, this is a well designed, constructed and powerful belt sander.
- Not Too Noisy – At only 84 decibels this is quieter than most belt sanders out there.
- Electronic Speed Control – Makes sure of constant speed even when working under load.
Check the latest price on Amazon.
Alternative Top Pick: Hitachi SB8V2
Alternative Top Pick
This variable speed belt sander from Hitachi has a sanding belt size of 3 inches x 21 inches.
A powerful 9.0 amp, 1020 watt motor ensures that even the toughest of sanding jobs are made easier and faster to complete.
With a no load speed of 820 to 1,475 ft per minute, this versatile belt sander can be used not only on wood but also on steel and painted surfaces with an appropriate sanding belt installed of course.
This 9.5 lb upgraded belt sander now has the dust collection bag located on the left hand side. This is so much better because now it’s great for getting right into those corners without the dust bag getting in the way.
Other much improved features include soft elastomer covered grip handles that really do help you steer the sander more comfortably than the previous version. There’s also a variable speed dial that gives you precise control when working on different textured surfaces.
As for noise levels, this has a no load decibel level of 87. And as we always say, remember to use appropriate ear protection when using any noisy tools, even on short duration jobs.
This belt sander is tough and well constructed, and to prove that Hitachi have faith in this product, Hitachi offers a 30 day satisfaction guarantee and a 5 year warranty is also included.
What We Like:
- Speed Control Dial – Great for selecting just the right amount of speed for the many different applications that this tool can be used for.
- Not too Heavy – Weighing 9.5 lbs makes it a solid enough machine to remain stable while working.
- Great Upgrade Features – This upgraded model has improved hand grip, better dust bag positioning, and a variable speed control dial.
Check the latest price on Amazon.
Best Budget Option: TACKLIFE 7.5A 900W Belt Sander
Best Budget Option
Great value for money belt/bench sanding machine. With a sanding belt size of 3 inches, by 21 inches you certainly have plenty of sanding capacity available.
You may be wondering what those two metal screw clamps next to the belt sander are for in the above picture, what they actually do is help to transform this belt sander into a bench sander.
This means that you are actually getting two sanding tools in one machine here, and bearing in mind that this is our best budget option, then that’s got to be great value for money.
Powered by a 7.5 Amp motor this 2 in 1 sander isn’t afraid of hard work, great for home renovation use, and also light professional site work.
A variable speed control dial lets you choose from 12 available speed settings ranging from 450 to 750 rpm.
Keeping that sanding belt running straight is easy, there’s just one screw to adjust to keep that belt running true. And as for keeping the dust under control, you have a detachable dust collection box or you could hook up to one of the two ( 32mm and 35mm ) vacuum ports available.
What We Like:
- Two Sanders In One Machine – This belt sander can also be used as a bench sander with the aid of the 2 supplied screw clamps.
- Variable Speed Settings – 12 available speed settings to make sure you are working as fast or as slow as you want to.
Things to Consider:
- Budget Option – Remember that this sander is at the lower price range, so don’t expect it to be able to work all day long for you like our top pick will do. This belt sander is best suited to light work, such as doors, furniture restoration and small areas of wooden flooring.
Check the latest price on Amazon.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a belt sander best used for?
A belt sander can be used for sanding large flat areas of wood such as tables, doors, flooring, interior, and exterior wooden furniture.
With the ability to change the sanding belt to a different sanding grit grade this gives you lots more work usage options.
A heavy grade of grit ( 60 – 80 ) on the sanding belt will enable you to remove protective coatings such as varnish with ease. For more delicate gentler sanding jobs, such as furniture, cabinets, and shelving then a grit grade of between 100 and 220 should be selected.
Can a belt sander be used for hardwood flooring?
Belt sanders make an ideal choice when working on renovating hardwood flooring. When you have a lot of area to sand, high quality belt sanders can cover large surface areas very quickly due to their powerful motor and large sanding belt size.
If the hardwood area is varnished then a courser grade of grit ( 60 – 80 ) should be selected for the sanding belt to enable varnish removal, working down to a finer grade of grit ( 100 – 220 ) for the final finish.
Belt sanders come in different belt size options, if sanding large areas such as hardwood flooring then the bigger 4 inch belt size belt sander should be your preferred choice.
What are the advantages of using a belt sander?
Belt sanders can smooth, level and flatten rough surfaces in materials like wood and metal more efficiently than other sanding tools providing the correct sanding belt is used.
Belt sanders come in varying sizes, the larger sized belts on handheld belt sanders are around 4 inches in width and up to 24 inches in length.
These large belt sanders help you to work quickly and are able to cover a lot of ground, which means more efficient use of work time.
How much stock can i remove in one pass?
Stock removal depends very much on the type of sanding belt that you have installed on your belt sander. If you are wanting to remove a lot of stock then 36 – 80 grit sanding belts should be used, approximately 1/8″ – 1/32″ can be removed in a single pass.
For less intensive lighter stock removal, sanding belts with a grit of 100 – 120 should be used, these sanding belts will remove around 1/32″ – 1/64″ on a single pass.
It’s important to remember that the power of the belt sander needs to be taken into consideration too, along with how much pressure is applied to the belt sander while working.
Other Worthy Mentions
These belt sanders didn’t make it into our top picks section, but we think they are definitely worth a mention.
This variable speed belt sander from Makita is perfect for home sanding projects and professional site work too.
With its powerful motor and high quality design this belt sander with a 3 x 21 inch sanding belt, will give you consistent sanding results every time.
- Powerful 8.8 Amp motor, providing smooth constant power delivery.
- Variable speed control from 690 – 1,440 ft per minute.
- Flush to wall sanding ability.
- Weighs 9.5 lbs.
This belt sander has a 3 x 21 inch sanding belt making it an ideal choice for fast stock removal when sanding flooring, decking, and other large wooden areas.
- Variable speed control from 2 – 6 meters a second.
- 6 speed settings available for precise working.
- 5 sanding belts included to get you working right out of the box.
- Weighs 8.7 lbs.
A belt sander that can be used as a bench sander with the aid of the included screw clamps, giving the user lots of sanding options.
- 7 Amp variable speed motor.
- Belt rotation speed of 787 – 1312 feet per minute.
- 3 x 21 inch sanding belt.
- Weighs 7.15 lbs.
A great budget priced 5.0 Amp 120 Volt belt sander, with a 3 x 18 inch sanding belt, ideal for homeowner DIY use.
- Can be used as a bench sander with the included screw clamps.
- 13 sanding belts included.
- Variable speed control ranging from 0 – 560 rpm.
- Weighs 7.5 lbs.
This 2 in 1 machine can be used as a belt sander and also a bench sander.
13 sanding belts included so that you can get started right away with those sanding jobs.
- 7.0 Amp, 800 watt motor, with 6 variable speed settings.
- 3 x 18 inch sanding belt.
- Weighs 8.3 lbs.
This great value for money budget belt sander can be used as a bench sander too, giving you 2 sanding machines in 1.
- 5 Amp motor suitable for DIY use.
- Lightweight at only 5 lbs.
- Two year warranty.
A belt sander with a bench sander option makes this a very useful woodworking tool to have in your tool collection.
- 3 x 18 inch sanding belt.
- 14 sanding belts included in this package.
- Variable speed control from 0 – 560 rpm.
- Weighs 7.6 lbs.
This great value for money electric belt sander is just the tool you need to get those sanding projects underway.
- 3 inch x 21 inch sanding belt.
- Belt speed of 13 feet per second.
- Weighs only 6.0 lbs.
- Backed by a 2 year warranty.