Best Random Orbital Sanders: Make Sanding Easier and Faster
Choose one of these random orbital sanders for faster sanding with less effort
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PUBLISHED ON September 23, 2019
A random orbital sander makes your sanding work infinitely easier and much faster. Featuring variable speeds and versatile sizes, these sanders offer maneuverability and the power you need for heavy sanding as well as for smooth, final sanding. Choose one of these quality sanders from the chart below to help you get the job done.
- Best OverallBosch 120V 6-Inch Orbital Sander/PolisherSummarySummaryA versatile sander that removes stock fast but also provides a well-blended, smooth finish. Variable speed control and 3.3 amp motor.ProsPros
The sander has a suspension system that controls vibration for comfort and control. Removable front handle gets you into tight spots and the dust collector reduces mess. Vacuum hose adapter included.ConsCons
The central shaft may break. It may be difficult to control on large, flat surfaces.
- Best ValueMilwaukee Electric Tools Random Orbit SanderSummarySummary
A powerful cordless sander that has an ergonomic angle for comfort and ease of use. A well-made sander that is especially good for smaller projects.ProsPros
The grip does not make your hands tired. Powerful, long-lasting battery. Sanding pads are easy to change.ConsCons
The dust canister sometimes comes off too easily. It may be too heavy for some users.
- Honorable MentionDewalt Random Orbit Sander, 5-InchSummarySummary
Reduced vibration sander that has a 3.0 amp motor and operates at 8,000 to 12,000 orbits per minute.ProsPros
The sander is short, so it reduces the distance between the work object and the operator. Only one hand needed to remove the dust bag. The design, including the rubber “over-mold” in some areas, reduces fatigue.ConsCons
Does not include connections to a standard Shop-Vac. The cord could be longer.
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- Always wear eye protection when sanding and grinding. Also wear a dust mask or, better yet, a respirator. Using a random orbital sander produces large amounts of fine dust particles that can produce lung damage and breathing problems.
- When sanding small areas or objects, it’s possible to hold your work in one hand and the random orbital sander in the other. But it’s better to use a clamp or hold-down to stabilize the object for better control and safety. Some recommend a piece of carpet hold-down for this.
Q: What is the difference between a traditional orbital sander and a random orbital sander?
A: A traditional orbital sander has a square sanding pad and moves in an orbital manner. A random orbital sander, on the other hand, has a circular sanding pad and it moves in an elliptical manner. Use a random orbital sander for making major changes to metal or wood or for finer finishes.
Q: Are there different types of random orbital sanders?
A: Yes. Some random orbital sanders are pneumatic-powered and some are electrical-powered. Some sanders are cordless, while some are corded. Many random orbital sanders have some form of dust collection system. Most of these sanders are either 5- or 6-inch (the diameter of the sanding pad).
Q: What grade of sanding pad do I use?
A: It depends on what you are sanding. Grades range from 60 (coarse) to 240 (fine). A large, rough project requires a coarse pad; for smooth, final finishes, you should use a fine-grained pad.
Our choice for the best random orbital sander overall is the Bosch 120V 6-Inch Orbital Sander/Polisher because it is powerful and features variable speed control.
If you’re looking for a great value, consider the well-built Milwaukee Electric Tools Random Orbit Sander.