How to Use a Belt Sander

If you are stuck with a lot of wood that needs sanding, a belt sander can get your job done smoothly and easily. This is an excellent tool that can smooth the wood with a good finish. Not only that, you can use it to polish the edges.

This belt sander is a powerful tool, and you must know how to use it or else you might damage the wood throughout the process. This article will help inform you in this regard.

Read on to find out more.

Get All the Required Equipment

  • Belt sander
  • Sandpaper
  • Safety goggles
  • Dust mask
  • Clamp
  • Wiping cloth

Steps To Use A Belt Sander Properly

Below, you will find out the perfect way to use a belt sander step-by-step.

Step 1: Choose the Accurate Sanding Belt

First of all, you must choose the perfect grit sequenced sanding belt before you start the project. To smooth rough areas, sandpaper with a lower grit sequence (40, 60 or 100) will be the best.

After you are done with that, gradually increase the grit sequence. Always check the area with your hand throughout the process. To give the wood a finishing touch, use 180-grit belt sander sandpaper.

When you are going to insert the belt onto the sander, let loose the lever and smoothly move it on the wheels. You will find the lever if you check the side of the sander.

Step 2: Use the Clamp

Just to be on the safe side, wear goggles and a woodworking dust mask in this step. It is better to take precautions beforehand.

After you put on the safety gear, put the wood onto the surface that you are going to sand and clamp the whole thing securely. Check whether all the areas are tightly fixed or not.

Step 3: Turn on the Sander

Start the sander and run it smoothly onto the wood. After a couple of seconds, the speed will increase gradually. Begin sanding the back part of the wood and slowly work your way up onto the front. Avoid putting too much pressure on any area.

Move the tool constantly and don’t keep it on a specific area for an extended time. This will make the area rougher than before, and you will have a hard time making the surface smoother again. Your time and effort will all go to waste if you do this kind of thing accidentally, so be careful.

Check the area regularly to make sure that you are getting the desired result. If not, sand it again. You need to have time and patience for this kind of work. Therefore, you must mentally prepare for it.

belt sander in use

Step 4: Give it a Finishing Touch

After you complete the rough areas, move the belt sander gradually from the board and check the dust collection bag. If it is full, remove it from the sander and empty it. Then attach it to the tool again.

Now it is time for you to give the wood board a finishing touch. Replace the sander belt with the higher grit sequence and start sanding again as in the above steps. Make sure the edges are getting smoother throughout this process, and, if rough edges remain, increase the grit number again.

Step 5: Clean the Wood

As you have finished the tough part, it is time for you to start cleaning the wood. Take a wiping cloth, preferably a tack rag, and gently remove the dust.


Follow the steps from start to end completely. Get a good grasp of this article and finish the project with a successful outcome.

Best of luck!

David Harper

I'm David, and I've been a craft & woodworking enthusiast for over 10 years. Sanders Guide is the place where I share some tips, tricks and reviews on all things DIY, tools and of course sanding!

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