Best Sander For Doors 2020 – A Detailed Review Guide

best sanders for doors

Sanding a door is a pretty intricate process whether you are dealing with a contoured or flat surface. However, you don’t need expert skills to get a smooth and professional finish. All you need is the best sander for doors to make your work easier.

When you look around, you will notice that there are several types of sanders in the market. You will have to choose between random orbital sanders, palm sanders, detail sanders, and drum sanders. The whole process of buying a suitable sander for doors becomes much more complicated.

The good news is that I am here to help. Today, we will take a comprehensive look at the top door sanders in the market. Included in this article is a buyer’s guide to help you find an excellent model to suit your needs. 


Product Name



Top Pick

Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander

Festool 571903  Orbital Sander

 Corded, Multi-Jetstream dust extraction

Overall Pick

CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander

CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander

3.0 Amps and  12,000 OPM

budget Pick

SKIL 5” Random Orbital Sander

SKIL 5-inch Random Orbital Sander

2.8 amp motor and

13,000 OPM

6 Best Sander for Doors - In depth Reviewed

1. Bosch ROS20VSC Palm Sander

If you are looking for a suitable sander for door refinishing, the Bosch ROS20VSC Palm Sander is an excellent choice. This impressive machine features an elegant design that gives you the perfect balance between quality and affordability. You get to enjoy the pad dampening feature that eliminates swirl spots quickly and effectively.

Note that this sander is great for both flat and contoured surfaces. Notice that you get to adjust the speed to suit different kinds of tasks. Users get to pick between 7500 OPM to 12,000 OPM, which is rather impressive. Understand that having control over speed will give you more reliability when working on your doors. On the plus side, this sander also weighs 3.5 pounds only. 

You will find it quite easy to complete projects without feeling fatigued. Note that reduced breaks will ensure you get a good quality finish and complete your projects on time. The soft grip coating ensures that you have a smooth sanding experience. Most individuals, especially beginners, find it difficult to maintain a constant speed when working with sanders. The soft grip ensures that you maintain the comfort zone throughout the task.

What I love about the Bosch ROS20VSC Palm Sander is the built-in microfilter. This machine will trap all the dust particles in the workspace effectively and efficiently. Breathing while sanding is made much more comfortable thanks to the microfilter system that can eliminate up to half micron-sized particles.


  • Pocket-friendly price
  • Easy to use and clean
  • Disc attachment is simple and straightforward
  • Variable speed control


  • May prove somewhat difficult to control for a few users

2. Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander

The Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander is among the most exceptional and versatile one-handed random orbital sanders in the market. The good news is that you can use this tool for almost any project and not just sanding doors. Understand that having a versatile tool is always a huge plus when you are a regular DIYer or professional.

What I love about the Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander is its ergonomic design. The tool fits comfortably in your hand with a rubberized top grip. You get to use this tool with either one hand or two hands depending on your preference and the type of job. A comfortable grip will help you complete projects faster and get a smooth finish.

The Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander features a multi-Jetstream dust extraction system. This impressive machine ensures the work area is kept clean and tidy at all times. You won’t have to spend long hours carrying out cleanup after sanding your door. Working in a clean environment also boosts performance and increases the quality of your finish.

Note that this machine features MMC electronic controls. You will get to enjoy variable speed control, a soft start, and constant speed. Understand that variable speed ensures you can work on different projects around the home.

Finally, the Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander has resilient pad hooks for easy abrasive removal. The machine will get you long-lasting services due to the sturdy pad and abrasive. You will enjoy working with this device in all your woodworking projects.


  • Easy and comfortable handling
  • Gets you high-end performance
  • Ergonomic design gives you comfort and control
  • Variable speed controls


  • A bit pricey if you are on a budget

3. Makita BO4556 Finishing Sander

The Makita BO4556 Finishing Sander is an excellent choice for one-handed operations. Makita is, undoubtedly, one of the top brands in the market with high-quality products. The first thing you will notice about this machine is the conveniently located on/off switch. You can easily begin and finish work with a single hand.

Note that all the switches with this device are rubber sealed to give you long-lasting services. Dust particles will find their way to your machine and cause any problems. This sander also features a good dust collection system that ensures the work environment is always clean. You will not spend long hours cleaning after finishing a project due to this feature.

The rectangular pads make it easier for you to sand corners and the hard-to-reach areas. You will find this machine effective for trim work. The good news is that sandpaper installation is relatively easy with this model.

The Makita BO4556 Finishing Sander features an all-ball-bearing construction to reduce both noise and vibration. Note that this is a vital feature when it comes to sanding doors. You will get more control over the machine whether you are working on contoured or flat surfaces. Note that intense vibration usually leads to hand fatigue.

What I like about the Makita BO4556 Finishing Sander is the rubberized parts that give you a comfortable grip. Understand that improved control is a must-have when you are looking for a smooth and professional finish.

The Makita BO4556 Finishing Sander is an excellent choice for both beginners and experts. You get a versatile model that can handle any woodworking project you throw its way. It comes at a reasonable price making it an ideal choice for individuals on a budget.


  • Pocket-friendly price
  • Large paper clamps for easy installation
  • Compact and lightweight construction
  • Comfortable and easy to control


  • Not ideal for large projects

4. BLACK + DECKER Mouse Detail Sander

The BLACK + DECKER Mouse Detail Sander looks more like an iron box. Notice that this sander works just as fast as the iron works on your clothes. The small, compact size gets you more control which means you can work faster. Notice that the small size also ensures you get deeper into those tight surfaces for a more professional finish.

What I love about the BLACK + DECKER Mouse Detail Sander is the detailed finger attachment. Understand that this is a vital feature that most sanders in the market never deliver. This feature will ensure you get to those hard-to-reach areas quickly and efficiently. When sanding your door, you won’t have to worry about leaving some spots unattended.

The 3-grip position gives you more control over this device. When working on large projects, it can be rather tiring to hold the sander in one position. Having three different grip positions will give you the relief you need to work for longer hours. You will find this machine comfortable and easy to use thanks to this feature.

The 1.2 Amp motor provides high-end performance when it comes to dust removal. Notice that the micro-filtration system gets rid of most of the dirt in the workplace. You will spend a lot less time cleaning once you are done sanding the door.

Finally, the BLACK + DECKER Mouse Detail Sander has a working speed of 14,000 OPM. You will get a smooth finish thanks to the high speed of this device. You will find it quite easy to sand doors when working with this machine.


  • Compact and lightweight construction
  • Pocket-friendly price
  • Works well in awkward places
  • Gets you value for your money


  • A few components are loose

5. SKIL 5-inch Random Orbital Sander

The SKIL 5-inch Random Orbital Sander gets you variable speed control that comes in handy when sanding doors. The good news is that this is a versatile tool that can handle different projects as well. If you are thinking of remodeling your garage metal door, or plexiglass door, then this is an excellent sander for you.

Notice that the SKIL 5-inch Random Orbital Sander becomes rather aggressive when pressed onto a surface. Most sanders in the market will become less aggressive in such situations, but not this sander. You can, therefore, get a smooth and professional finish when using this machine. You will quickly notice that this machine works faster than other sanders in the market.

What I love about the SKIL 5-inch Random Orbital Sander is the transparent dust box. It is much easier to maintain a clean working environment when you can see the amount of dust collected. You will easily know when it is time to empty the dust collection system.

This sander features a powerful 2.8-amp motor that delivers up to 13,000 orbits per minute. You will certainly enjoy the smooth performance of this impressive machine. Note that this is a versatile sander that can handle most of the projects you throw its way.

The soft rubber grip and ergonomic design of this sander guarantee low vibration. Users can, therefore, maintain a comfortable and secure grip during the entire project. Understand that the counterweight works to reduce hand fatigue, thus ensuring you keep on working for longer. Using this sander ensures you get more work done.

Finally, the SKIL 5-inch Random Orbital Sander is great for sanding tight places due to its small and compact size. You will get maximum control even when working in those hard-to-reach places. This is a huge plus when working on contoured doors.


  • Small and compact size
  • Easy to use and clean
  • Variable speed control
  • Powerful 2.8 Amp motor


  • A poor dust collection system

6. CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander

If you are looking for a high-performance random orbital sander, the CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander is an excellent choice. You get a low-profile design that makes it easier to work on those tight spaces when sanding your door. Since this device fits in your palm, you will find it relatively easy to work in hard-to-reach places.

What I like about the CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander is the powerful 3 AMP motor that delivers high-end performance. Understand that this powerful motor allows you to work on different projects apart from doors. This sander will comfortably handle all woodworking projects that you throw its way. The dust collection system of the CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander is pretty exceptional.

However, note that this device cannot connect to a standard vacuum hose as illustrated in most advertisements. The good news is that you can attach it to a regular vacuum cleaner in case it fits. The dust-sealed switch ensures you get a long-lasting model. Understand that sanders are an investment that should provide reliable services for many years. You don’t want to end up purchasing a new device every couple of years.

This impressive sander also comes with a 3-year warranty. You can rest easy knowing that you are covered in case of any faults with the machine. Notice that the sturdy construction and dust-sealed switch guarantee long-lasting performance.

Finally, this sander is vibration and noise-free. You can comfortably use this machine in a crowded neighborhood. If you are looking for a budget-friendly sander for your doors, then the CRAFTSMAN Random Orbit Sander is an excellent choice.


  • A long warranty gives you peace of mind
  • Durable and dustproof design
  • The superior performance gives you versatility


  • Cannot be attached to a 1 1/4 -inch vacuum hose

What kind of sander do I need for refinishing a door?

Most people don’t know which type of sander to get for refinishing a door. Well, this is a rather common occurrence considering the different types of sanders in the market. Note that choosing the right sander for the job will ensure you get a smooth and professional finish.

Understand that you must sand a door when carrying out a refinishing project. You don’t want to end up with a sloppy looking door after spending a lot of time and labor. If you decide to put fresh paint before sanding, all those chippings, scratches, and scarps will appear even more clearer on your door.

Although you can manually sand a door, it is not always preferred. This is because you will spend more time on your project and the finish won’t be as good. Machine-based sanding is the best alternative when you are looking for a smooth and professional finish.

The right sander for the job will have to be the random orbital sander. Note that this type of sander does the job well regardless of whether you are dealing with a contoured or flat door. You will also get more control over the machine to help you complete the project faster.

The good news is that random orbital sanders are quite versatile. You can use this sander for different projects apart from sanding doors. If you are a regular DIYer, you will enjoy working with this sander on various projects around your home.

How to sand a door for painting -Step by step instruction

How to sand a door for painting

When guests arrive at your home, the first thing they see is your door. If you are the type of person who values how your home looks, then you need nice-looking doors. Understand that sanding is the first step towards refinishing your door. Here is a step by step instructional on how to properly sand your door for painting.

Step 1: Gather the Tools

Although sanding a door is relatively easy, you need the right tools. One of the vital tools needed for this project is the right type of sander. Ensure you get a sander that can help you during the project. Note that you can always buy or rent a sander depending on your preference. Other tools that you will need apart from the sander include the following:

Protective gear

Ensure you cover everything in the workplace before we begin the sanding process. Mote that the cleanup will take hours if you forget to cover up everything else. It will also help if you wore protective clothing before the work starts. Note that a dust mask and safety glasses are important when sanding your door.

Step 2: Sanding

For our project, we will need three types of sandpaper; medium, fine, and superfine sandpaper. Note that the medium sandpaper has grit numbers ranging from 80-120, the fine sandpaper ranges from 150-180 grit, and the very fine sandpaper ranges from 220-240-grit.

Take the medium sandpaper and place it in your sander. You can then start sanding the door gently until all the old paint is removed from the entire surface. Notice that the medium grit sandpaper will also leave your door scratch-free.

Medium sandpaper is the best choice when it comes to paint removal. However, note that not all door scratches can be removed by the medium grit sandpaper. You should, therefore, not get worried in case you have a few scratches still left on your door.

Use the fine sandpaper to remove all the scratches on your door. Ensure that you sand as gently as possible especially when dealing with an old door. You don’t want to end up damaging your door and end up spending a fortune on a replacement.

You then need to use the very fine sandpaper to complete the sanding process. Ensure you sand the entire door using this sandpaper to get you a more professional finish. Understand that the very fine sandpaper will give you the final touch you need.

Step 3: Clean

Clean the entire area once you are done sanding the door. Note that the newspaper will help you reduce the number of dust particles on the floor. Note that most sanders include a dust collection system that will save you a lot of time during the cleanup.

Once the workplace is clean, you can start painting your door. Ensure you apply two to three coats depending on the type of paint you are using. One coat is never enough when you want a professional finish for your door. 

Things to Keep in Mind

Sand with the grain when working on your door. Doing this will help you avoid damaging your door during the sanding process. Note that most scratches and paint get removed when you sand with the grain rather than against the grain.

Final Verdict

Although all the sanders reviewed in this article are excellent for sanding doors, my top pick for the best sanders for doors has to be the Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander. It is a premium quality door sander that offers high-end performance.

The 6-inch sanding pads of the Festool 571903 Random Orbital Sander will ensure you cover large surfaces within a short period. What I love about this model is the fact that it is a versatile tool that can handle most of the projects around the home.

When looking for the best sander for doors, you must consider customer reviews. Note that insights from previous buyers will give you a clearer picture of the tool before making a purchase. It would also help if you compared different models when finding the right sander for your project. Ensure you find a suitable option that fits within your budget.


Can I sand off varnish?

Yes, sanding is an effective way of removing varnish before painting. Note that sanding is a chemical-free way of preparing the wood for finishing. Simply start with 150-grit sandpaper and remove all the varnish from the wood. However, note that it will take some time before all the varnish is removed from the surface. Use a suitable sanding machine to help you complete the project faster and effectively.

Should I clean wood after sanding?

Yes, you need to clean the wood immediately after sanding. Understand that the quality of your finish will be greatly affected by dust particles. Use a damp cloth to get rid of all the dust on your wood after sanding. You should also give the wood enough time to dry before painting. Note that getting a smooth and professional finish is difficult with wet wood.

Should I sand or strip furniture?

According to most experts, stripping is safer and faster than sanding. However, if you are dealing with an old piece of furniture, you will be better off sanding rather than stripping. Notice that stripping is rather aggressive and will damage old wood. Slowly sand down old pieces of furniture and antiques before refinishing.

What type of sander is ideal for doors?

When sanding doors, you are better off with a random orbital sander. Note that these sanders will get you a smooth finish when working on both contoured and flat surfaces. You will also work on the hard-to-reach areas with a lot of ease. Random orbital sanders are also quite versatile since they can be used on different types of projects.

Is a sheet sander better than an orbital sander?

The orbital sander is better than the sheet sander due to its versatility. You can use orbital sanders for different projects, unlike the sheet sanders. Also, note that orbital sanders are more powerful than sheet sanders. 

Should I buy a random orbital sander?

If you are a regular DIYer, then a random orbital sander is a worthy purchase. Note that the random orbital sanders can be used for different types of projects. The good news is that they are quite affordable and easy to use. However, ensure you find a model that offers high-end performance and long-lasting services at a pocket-friendly price.

About the Author Louis

Louis is a DIY enthusiast, blogger and ecommerce entrepreneur. She created this website with an intention to reach out people and guide them to make best choices to deliver free extensive DIY home-improvement content.

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