Best Sanders For Decks – 2021 Reviews

| Last Updated: December 30, 2021

DIY furnishings are loved by all arts and crafts enthusiasts. However, you can not use them unless you sander the wood properly, and it can be quite costly to hire a professional to do it.

Hence, we have made a list of top sanders to help you get the job done.

Comparison of the Best Sanders For Decks

  • Designed to make carpenting much easier
  • On-board system allows for filtering of fine dust
  • Design makes it easy to find the right speeds
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  • Best for the Money
  • Large front grip for better operator comfort
  • Equipped with 4 inch wide belt
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  • Best Belt Sander for Deck
  • Single-lever belt changes for easier use
  • Micro-filtration allows for better dust capture
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  • Best Orbital Sander for Deck
  • Adjustable speed dial allows for better control
  • Design is ergonomic and allows clean work
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  • Best Sander for Deck Refinishing
  • Equipped with micro-filter dust canister
  • Comes with improved vibration control
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Can Any Sander Be Used on a Deck?

If you use just any sander on your deck, then that may cost you your whole deck. Note that the woods used on decks are usually soft-wood trees that can be scraped by using power tools or very coarse grit sandpapers. Belt sanders tend to gouge softwoods, whether hand-held versions or wide uprights, so vibrating or angular sanders often do a decent job.

Also, an important thing to consider here is whether your sander is powered or not. Both can do the job somewhat decently, but the amount of time and patience required to use an unpowered sander can be too much for bigger decks.

What Makes a Sander Great for Finishing a Deck?

There are certain factors that need to be considered before buying any sander. These differentiate between a great and a mediocre model. These factors also provide you with the extra edge to enhance your experience significantly.

Sanding Space Size

Not every deck is produced equal. Some have unusual rounded corners and style variations. If you have extensive jobs, you'll want a sander that suits you. If you like things that look monotonous, you'll want a model that delivers speed and strength, while giving versatility a short shrift.

Bosch ROS20VSC Palm Sander

Orbital vs Belt

It is widely suggested that a belt sander is the best if you are buying a sander for your deck. Orbital sanders are also an option; however, they seriously lack the room and power to sander large decks effectively. They're built for precision and power.

Hence, if you want a wide, strong, and intimidating sander for a job like sanding a deck, then orbital sanders are not ideal. It is suggested that you go with belted ones for the sake of your own sanity.


Occasionally, it is recommended to try and balance quality and price in the middle, but we've noticed that the middle ground on sanders fails to deliver great value.

Review of the Best Sanders For Decks

It can be exhausting trying to pick an ideal sander for your DIY endeavors, especially when the market is full of them. However, don’t worry, we have made a list of some ideal models for different needs of different customers.

Best Overall:
Bosch ROS20VSC Palm Sander

BOSCH ROS20VSC Palm Sander 2.5 Amp 5 In. Corded Variable Speed Random Orbital Sander/Polisher Kit with Dust Collector and Soft Carrying Bag, Blue


  • Compact and fits right into your hand
  • Makes flat or contoured decks smooth
  • Includes a dust collection system in the unit
  • Ergonomic design that is very comfortable to use
  • Features thicker sandpaper for efficient performance


  • Quickly fills with dust
  • Ideal for small work only

What Recent Buyers Report

Generally, consumers find dust collection on sanders a total waste of money and time unless they have the shop vac hooked to their sander. Nevertheless, they have now fully changed their stance on this concept after using this model. They also love its comfortable and compact design.

Why it Stands Out to Us

It has a compact size and comfortable design that makes it ideal to sander wooden knobs and small decks. The efficiency and effectiveness with which it smoothens them are also unique features. Furthermore, its dust collection and packaging make it stand out from all its competitors.

Who Will Use it the Most

We think this model would be a decent choice for you to consider if you are a weekend warrior hoping to polish the wooden knobs of your house or room like any regular handy person. It's thin and compact and fits into your hand in a convenient and intuitive way.

Bottom Line

Overall, this is a great sander that deals efficiently and effectively with small decks and doorknobs. It smooths all rough and coarse surfaces easily. Furthermore, it is very compact and small and designed to be comfortably used by all.

Makita 9403 Belt Sander

Makita 9403 4' x 24' Belt Sander, Teal


  • Operates very quietly
  • Has a very powerful motor
  • Easy to operate and control
  • Offers great value for money
  • Aggressively smoothens your deck


  • Heavy as compared to counterparts

What Recent Buyers Report

Users report that it is an incredible sander that provides great value for money. It's a great mix, and it will not crush you like any old Porter-Cable. It delivers amazing results, and users couldn't be happier. If you want to buy a "big dog" sander, then Makita 9403 will be an ideal choice.

Why it Stands Out to Us

We like it because it is the perfect belt sander for deck refinish. It is extremely easy to use. It is fast, powerful, and easy to manage. It is quiet and heavy too. It does work in its favor, though, somehow because it lets the consumer keep the thing under control.

Who Will Use it the Most

If you are someone who deals with large decks that are very rough, then this will be an ideal sander for you. It will easily let you sander huge pieces of wood without ever getting dull. Furthermore, it is relatively expensive, so it might not suit people on a budget.

Bottom Line

All in all, this is a great sander that can deal with huge chunks of rough woods effectively. It is a very powerful device that operates silently. Furthermore, it is very easy to control and manage. These features help Makita provide great value to its customers.

Best Belt Sander for Deck:
SKIL 7510-01 Sandcat

Skil 7510-01 120 Volt 3-InchX 18-InchBelt Sander,Red


  • Highly durable built
  • Includes an auto-track system
  • Great performance at a great price
  • 3-inch belt suitable for small decks
  • Features a pressure control feature


  • Belt is narrow
  • Dust collection is not effective

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers state that this is surprisingly strong for a 6-amp engine. The sanding pressure indicator light system added is great as it alerts you timely and keeps sanding regardless of how hard you hold down. Sanding with this is a bit like a workout or weightlifting, making you fit while you work. Hence, customers love it.

Why it Stands Out to Us

It is a belt sander at a great price. However, it is not manufactured cheaply. Its features are very effective and distinctive, like pressure control. This function alerts you when the unit is under pressure. It thus prevents it from being stressed and guarantees a long life.

Who Will Use it the Most

Well, this is ideal for people who are on a budget yet want high quality. It provides you with durability, power, and extensive features in some of the lowest prices without trading in the quality. It is still made from materials of great quality.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for a highly affordable and highly durable sander, then this model might be perfect for you. It has extensive features like the auto-track system and pressure control and is highly durable. 

Best Orbital Sander for Deck:
TACKLIFE Orbital Sander


  • Ideal for indoor work
  • Efficient dust collection system
  • Features 6 different speed controls
  • Comfortable and easy to use design
  • Makes the surface smooth very efficiently


  • Not compatible with dry walls
  • Vibrations can be too much sometimes

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers did a ton of home renovation projects with it, and while it is a new brand on the market, customers really love it. It performs quite well, and projects have been speeding for the buyers. It makes them feel as if it is made of high material too.

Why it Stands Out to Us

It stands out from its competitors, thanks to its various speed options. This helps users set the speed according to the work they are doing without having to damage our deck. It is also compact and can fit into tight spaces without you having to lose any control.

Who Will Use it the Most

Precision designed all-ball bearing configuration for minimized vibration and noise, the unit works stably with reduced vibration and lower noise, making it suitable for indoor operation. 

However, it is not ideal for wall sanding. The wall dust is too thin to obstruct the collection device, dust is easily diffused, and the desired collecting effect of dust can't be achieved.

Bottom Line

To sum up, this is a highly efficient and versatile device with various speed controls and an efficient dust collection system. It is ideal for indoor use with low noise and low vibration technology. Furthermore, it is compact and suitable for small spaces.

Best Sander for Deck Refinishing:
Bosch OS50VC Electric Orbital Sander

BOSCH OS50VC Electric Orbital Sander - 3.4 Amp 1/2 Inch Finishing Belt Sander Kit with Vibration Control for 4.5 Inch x 9 Inch Sheets , Blue


  • Easy and comfortable to use
  • Highly durable built for long life
  • Effective vibration control system
  • Highly compatible with various kinds of papers
  • Offers effective dust control and disposal system


  • Hard to get hands-on its replacement parts

What Recent Buyers Report

According to buyer reports, this is a top-quality sander that can do the job well. The method of loading the sandpaper is loved by customers. It is simple and keeps the sheets smooth and secure, making it a great device. Even dust collection is good for this type of sander. Furthermore, it leaves a very smooth finish.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The thing that stands out most about this device is its dust collection system. Aside from removing all the dust, it even extracts the finest particle clouds out of it. Additionally, the disposal of the canister residue is also made easy. It is transparent blue, and when it's time to clear the canister, you know easily.

Who Will Use it the Most

Although it is a pretty versatile device and can be used for various functions, it will be highly suitable for refinishing decks of various sizes. It can also be used with different kinds of sandpapers. Lastly, it is good for long jobs since its dust collection system is very effective.

Bottom Line

All in all, this is a highly durable model. It is an effective sander. It has the best dust collection system and is compatible with most sandpapers. Furthermore, it is very easy and comfortable to use.

6. DEWALT Random Orbit Sander (DWE6423K)

DEWALT DWE6423K Variable Speed Random Orbit Sander, 5'


  • Wide surface area of five inches
  • Offers a three-year limited warranty
  • Features a powerful motor of 3-amp
  • Easier to control with its shorter height
  • Reduced vibration due to effective insulation


  • Relatively louder than competitors
  • Dust collection system is not big enough

What Recent Buyers Report

It is a great sander that can withstand anything. It can be used for wet grinding for days, and it still won’t give up. This is evidence of its superior quality, and hence it is loved by all customers. It has low vibrations and variable speed options, making it ideal for most jobs. 

Why it Stands Out to Us

This machine is powered by a 3.0-amp motor, which allows you to go from 8,000 to 12,000 rpm instantaneously. The device is also dust-proof to increase its shelf-life and preserve intact internal components. Its dust collection system can also be connected to a vacuum for better cleaning results.

Who Will Use it the Most

According to us, this model can be used with both wet and dry services effectively without getting damaged. It has great quality. Furthermore, it has various speed options, which makes it ideal for all kinds of jobs. Also, its dust collection system makes it ideal for jobs for long periods.

Bottom Line

To sum it all up, this is most probably the definition of versatility when it comes to sanders. It has various speed options and an extensive dust collection system and can be used effectively on both wet and dry surfaces.

Pros and Cons of Sanding Your Deck

There are various reasons why it is important to sander your decks. These reasons also make it necessary to do so. At the same time, it can have its drawbacks. Let’s put things into perspective. 


Some benefits that you can reap out of this activity are as follows.

Prevents Splinters

Wood fibers of the various deck components often rise after a thorough power washing as they expand with water. Such wood fibers will sometimes remain elevated until dry, which can cause splinters. For this purpose, after power washing and before staining and sealing, you should prepare to sand up your wood floor.

Smoothens Your Surfaces

Sanding makes your surfaces smooth, and hence it is easier for you to do any further work on them. It basically provides you with a plain and smooth canvas to further your DIY projects.

Extends the Life of Your Deck

Proper sander work will prolong the life of your deck. It prevents it from seasonal effects and the rough use of it.


 Some drawbacks that you need to keep in mind are as follows.

Might Damage Your Floor

If you are not careful, then you might end up seriously damaging your deck. This is particularly true if the sander is too powerful or the speed settings are not accurate.


We know how important it is to sander your deck. Hence, we have listed some top options that you can pick from and get smooth and plain decks that you need for your DIY projects. They have various customizable features, which makes them ideal for various types of decks and sandpapers.

People Also Ask

Sanders can be a big investment for many people; hence it is only right to ask as many questions to satisfy your curiosity as possible. For this very purpose, we have also answered some top questions asked by buyers. Read them and satisfy your curiosity away.

Should You Sand a Deck Before Staining?

Yes, it is advisable that you sand your deck before staining it. This will smoothen the surface first and make staining for you easier. In some cases, you can do the latter first, like if you are creating wood crafts, but otherwise, sanding should be done first.

What Type of Sander Do You Use to Sand a Deck?

It entirely depends on your deck or the purpose for which you are using a sander. If it’s a big deck, then a wide belt sander is advisable. If it is a small one, then orbital sanders also work just fine.

Do You Need to Pressure Wash a Deck Before Sanding?

Raised wood fibers can cause splinters; hence you should power wash your deck first. This ensures that you will get great results. Furthermore, make sure it is dried before you sand because few sanders are compatible with wet and dry sanding.

What Grit Sandpaper For Deck Sanding?

For wood grain, you'll want to sand and use the appropriate grit sanding paper. Using sanding paper or discs with 60-150 grit would work best.