If you’re like any other D.I.Y. or merely tool fanatic, you most likely know how essential having a sander is. Nothing quite completes a project like a smooth finish. To our avail, most belt sanders in the market are relatively affordable. They’re also very dependable and can last quite a while if you take care of it. Therefore, we have a valuable investment in our hands if chosen wisely. Today we review the top 10 best belt sanders in the market and for the money.
If we had to pick the very best belt sander in the market right now, we would go with the Black & Decker DS321 for a few reasons. For one, we can trust the confidence in buying it because of the numerous positive reviews on the tool by those who have been using it for quite a while. Second, it’s price-to-quality ratio is very solid, considering it is an investment when buying a belt sander — durability and a long lasting construction is key. The recommended DS321 doesn’t break your wallet per se, offers some decent additional features, and B and D is brand we can trust with confidence. With that being said, if you do want some other options to consider, feel free to continue reading on for our list of top 10.
Table of Contents
If you’re already aware of what a belt sander is, feel free to skip this part. However, to brush up on our memory, we’d like to give a quick overview of the tool.
Belt sanders are powered sanders that use a moving abrasive belt to make your surfaces more smooth. They’re extremely efficient if you’re needing to save time as opposed to merely sanding by hand with sand paper. Some may prefer reading our best disc sander article for that route, but at the end of the day both sanders have their uses depending on the project or task you’ve got in front of you.
Belt sanders are commonly used for trimming a “scribed line”, rough surfaces, making surfaces more level, and basic shaping and rounding. There are some very powerful belt sanders in the market that won’t break your wallet completely. The question is more of a “why not just include one in my arsenal?” They’re not typically included in power tool combo kits, so if you want some additional sanding to get done, you’ve come to the right place.
- Your budget – This is an obvious important factor when choosing a belt sander or any power tool at that. Belt sanders in particular aren’t too pricey.
- Preferred brand? This is typically up there on our list when it comes to choosing a power tool, regardless of what type it is. We’ve found through experience that many people are very brand loyal when it comes to power tools. This has to do with many reasons, with one of the most important being trust. We know some heavy hitters like DeWalt and Makita, but what about the other, less-known brands? We found some worth looking at.
- Size and voltage – Belt sanders come in some different sizes with more powerful (check the amps of the motor) capabilities. Most sanders in this article are great for any home applications, while we recommend going at a higher amp and voltage capacity if you plan on professional uses at job sites.
- Additional features wanted? Well, there are some belt sanders that merely come in the box to sand right away. However, others offer a few other additional capabilities such as variable speeds, being cordless (corded sanders do not require battery charging) or containing cleaning systems. Typically, the more features the higher the cost, so it depends on what you’d prefer.
The following is our list of carefully researched and reviewed belt sanders in the market. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact us below or via e-mail.
Black & Decker DS321
Black & Decker power tools come up many times in our articles. As previously written, this particular belt sander is one we could not ignore. The DS321 is a relatively affordable power sander that gives us 7.0 amp of power (plenty for smaller to medium projects). The angled design makes it easier to use than others and the hood is retractable to expose the top of the sanding belt if you need to clean or tweak it to your needs. A few other highlights include three adjustable positions, a dust bag for easy cleaning, and a low profile and flush body design for convenient use. We love the size because you can sand both larger surfaces (like floors and counter tops) but also reach those pesky, smaller areas (like under railings and such). Grab this if you want a solid belt sander that is backed up by user reviews around the internet.
If you are looking for a quiet sander with a good amount of power, look no further. At 84 decibels, the Makita 9403 is the quietest belt sander in its class. It operates at a speed of 1,640 feet per minute which ensures fast material removal. The motor and bearings are protected from dust and debris contamination by the labyrinth construction seals. It’s large front grip and dust bag that swivels 360 degrees were designed for the comfort and convenience of the operator. The cord is also located near the top of the handle for added convenience. This belt sander is double insulated and weighs only a mere 13 pounds. It’s powerful 11 AP motor will not disappoint either. It features an innovative design for sanding flush to the wall with the nose and side of the sander. This sander by Makita is an overall excellent choice when looking for the best belt sander because of it’s ease of usability and efficiency.
As a leader in power tool research and development, Hitachi continually offers innovative and high quality tools in terms of overall build to get the job done. The Hitachi SB8V2 features a variable speed dial that allows the operator to adjust the speed from 820 to 1,475 feet per minute for increased manageability in any situation. It also offers a tracking window that allows for improved visibility of the sanding surface and the sanding belt while in use. If you like to keep a clean work area, you will appreciate the left-side mounted dust collection bag that not only improves corner sanding operations but also reduces airborne particles. The main and auxiliary handles have soft elastomer grip surfaces which give the operator a comfortable and secure hold, and the wear-resistant V-belt lasts for double the service life. This particular cordless sander is 9.5 pounds and worth it if you want a belt sander with some additive features to work with.
The features on this compact sander make it in high demand for many professional and personal applications. This 6.6 pound corded belt sander is a compact tool with a textured rubber grip that allows for easy one-handed control. If you prefer two-handed control, you can easily remove the auxiliary handle and the cord exit grip provides auxiliary gripping for a range of orientations. Whether you are sanding a vertical surface, a horizontal surface at an awkward angle or any other tricky areas, you will get excellent sanding pretty effortlessly. It’s flush side even allows the user to operate up to a less common perpendicular surface. It has metal components that ensure that this sander will hold up even during tough professional applications. It is dust sealed and its recessed switch prevents turning off the sander on accident while in use. This compact and light sander comes highly recommended for a variety of uses.
Black & Decker BR318
Black & Decker is a name that has stood the test of time in the world of quality tools and here’s our second B and D sander in the list. As a compact but powerful sander, the Black & Decker BR318 is another quality offering from the company. It’s 6 Amp motor allows the operator to sand quickly and aggressively. The flush body is designed to enable sanding against vertical surfaces while the angled belt design enables the user to get super close to the edge of adjoining surfaces. Users will enjoy the feature of auto belt tracking, which maintains the accurate alignment of the sanding belt during use. Other features include two handles for increased comfort and a dust bag with zipper that is very easy to empty. It’s speed is 600 feet per minute and is 6.1 pounds. This helpful yet affordable belt sander is sure to come in handy in a wide variety of applications.
The Makita 9903 offers an exciting combination of power and speed that will make it a go-to tool for a number of different projects. This double insulated 3 x 21-inch belt sander is preferred by many carpenters, furniture makers, floor installers, general contractors and others who require a best in class sander. Even though the powerful motor operates at 8.8 Amps, the output is only 85 decibels for a pretty noise-free experience. The variable speed control allows the user to adjust the speed from 690 to 1,440 feet per minute according to what is required for the specific project. It’s sleek design enables sanding flush to the wall with the nose and side of the sander. Its auto-tracking belt system, front grip design and 16.4 foot long power cord were created with the comfort and convenience of the user in mind. It also has a dust bag to protect your work area. It’s more of a question of what this belt sander doesn’t have.
The Skil 7510-RT will be ideal for you if you are looking for a consistent tool to use for your wood sanding needs. Its built-in pressure control indicator and 80 bit sanding belt offers uniform coverage with a consistent force every time you use it. This compact sander is powered by a 6 Amp motor, which will give you the power you need to sand most wooden surfaces. It was designed with contoured handles for a high level of comfort and control. It is easy to maneuver alongside walls, ceilings and any parallel structure to deliver perfect edging. Even fine dust particles will be captured by its micro-filtration system and remnants are taken into the attached dust canister. This model comes with a proprietary auto-alignment track to help you with perfect execution of your desired outcome. Pick this one up if you are looking for consistency and reliability as well as a budget-friendly belt sander.
If you need a belt sander to help you out when you’re in a tight spot, the Genesis GBS321A is an excellent choice. It’s flat side, low profile design allows for flush sanding in tight areas. The variable speed features offer even greater flexibility in adjusting your tool to the task at hand, setting the speed anywhere from 390 to 1180 feet per minute. Carpenters, floor installers, furniture makers, deck builders, general contractors and others who need power and versatility in their sander will want to purchase this one. It’s strong 8 Amp motor will make sure you can get the job done. Its auto-tracking belt system, single lever quick-change belt change, 6.5 foot power cord and adjustable front grip handle ensure that it is easy to use. This 8.5 pound belt sander is perfect for those who want consistent results for all of their projects.
The Astro 3037 is ideal if you are looking for a safe, reliable, lightweight sander to add to your tool collection. Astro may not necessarily be an extremely popular brand but this model is pretty known among sanding fanatics. This pneumatic sander features a simple belt tension lever and increased pulley space for new thicker belts. Its protection guard offers increased protection of both the user and the tool. The operator will find that it has a very comfortable non-slip handle grip as well as variable speed control that can easily be adjusted according to the requirements of the project. At a weight of only 2.2 pounds, it is among the lightest sanders available on the market. This belt sander is specifically known for being great for spot weld removal. It works as good or better than other sanders that have a much more expensive price tag. If its excellent reviews are any indication, this is definitely a tool you will want to have at your disposal.
The Rockwell SS4300K tops off our list and may be just what you need if you require a belt sander that can work consistently on a variety of materials. This sander comes with a number of features that the user will appreciate. First of all, it has a quick release belt that will enable the user to complete fast and easy belt changes. It also has a variable speed control for greater flexibility in adjusting to the needs of individual projects. The lock-on switch adds extra convenience and will help prevent the user from fatiguing during continued use. For added comfort, a dual handle design with soft grip has been included, which also helps in preventing fatigue. The dust bag will assist in keeping your work environment from getting covered with remnants. Grab this one by Rockwell if you’re looking for a powerful yet comfortable belt sander, especially if you often find yourself sanding for an extended period of time.