Belt Sander vs Planer

Belt Sander vs Planer – Which One Is Better For You?

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Belt Sander and Planer are the two different machines used on various stuff works, one does shape and finishing, and the other does flirt surface and remove staffs. 

Though the work sounds the same, both do it in different ways and techniques, which means that there are multiple pros and cons between them on a working basis.

You may get multiple differences in the neck eyes. But without those physical differences, there are functional, working basis differences you may not find out and won’t get them easily. 

These differences or comparisons give one advantage from the other and make one perfect for a particular job. Let’s discuss a full overview between Belt Sander vs Planer so that it gets clear to you which one you should choose for your job.

Comparison Table for Belt Sander vs Planer

Comparison factorBelt SanderPlaner
Cutting edgecan round the edgeyes
Adjustable depthNo need yes
Power consumption lowhigh
Cost lowhigh

Belt sander

Belt sander

A belt sander is used in shaping and finishing wood. Usually, it is for smoothing the surface and also for freehand rounding. It consists of a loop of sandpaper operated by an electric motor. Rotate at a very high speed and remove any material from the surface. As its multiple sizes, its power consumption varies from 1 hp to 5 hp.

  • Easy to use, easy to handle.
  • No need for a large workspace.
  • Can perform heavy work.
  • Easy to change the sand belt.
  • Very useful for removing material quickly.
  • No need for a skilled worker.
  • Easy to smooth rough edges
  • Make a lot of noise.
  • Not an ideal choice for finishing the product.
  • Only best for a flat surface.

Planer Tools

planer 1

A planer is a single-point tool in high operation for smoothing and flattening the surface very deeply and flat accurately. It is a reciprocating machine. Work in relative linear motion between the single-point cutting tool and the object. 

Planer machine use and working principle are similar to shaper machines. Its multiple sizes make its power consumption very high and can vary from 2 hp to 10 hp.

  • Greater accuracy for surface planning.
  • Very powerful and effective
  • Can work with multiple woods in a workpiece at a time.
  • Required low maintenance
  • Very good for surface finishing.
  • Easy to change planer blade
  • High power consumption.
  • Required skilled worker.
  • The cost is high.

Similarities And Dissimilarities Between Belt Sanders and Planers


The function and working area of the belt sander and Planer are different. You will find very small similarities between them. Planer is used for making the flat surface, but sometimes you can use a belt sander for making the flat surface.


Also, both these Belt Sander and Planer come in handheld and stationary models. Where hand models of these Belt Sander and Planer are hard to control. But both handheld and stationary models remove wood at high speed with great accuracy.


A belt sander and a planer come in various models and multiple sizes. You have to choose according to your need and working space.

A smaller belt sander or a planer is portable, can be carried in any place, and doesn’t use or take much space. Whereas the large belt sander or Planer are powerful, they need bigger space in the working station.

Suitable materials:

Both of these tools can be used in wood and metal.



The main difference between Belt Sander and Planer is that a belt sander uses sandpaper that helps to remove paint from any material or smooth any edges.

Other hands, a planer uses large steel blades to cut depth and cut out the extra wood from the surface to make the surface smooth.

Work purpose:

As a planer, it is used to flatten a rough wood surface. It is used to remove any extra pieces of wood from the surface. Large wood pieces or longboards are generally best used in a planer.

A belt sander is generally used for removing material such as paint stains from woods. But it is very good to make curves, shapes, and smooth rough edges.

Working Area:

A belt sander is used to make smooth surfaces and carve surfaces (which also can make a flat surface), and Planer is used to make a flat surface.

Cutting stability

You won’t get that much stability while cutting in both handhold models. But in the large planers, you get more stability than a belt sander. 

Because the large planers have rollers where you just have to hold the wood and roller will pull the material through the blades, and in the belt sander, you have to move your arm with the material to the sander.

Cutting technique

In a belt sander, you can’t select the depth of how much you want to level the wood; you have to measure it manually and keep an eye on the while sanding so that you don’t sand much in one side.

Also, a belt sander is used for sanding the top surface of the wood or other material to smooth and remove material.

Whereas a planer, especially a large Planer, has a depth guide, you just have to select the depth level and cut that specific level of wood.


A belt sander sand the surface and create sawdust means powder dust. On the other hand, a planer with its blade removes chips of wood or large straps of wood. But a belt sander create more dust than a planer, 

Note: I recommend you to wear a mask while using a belt sander because that sawdust flies into the air.

What to choose, planer or belt sander?

Both these materials are good and effective from their point of view or on their functions. So, if you have a wood surface that is not much straight or flat, you can choose a planer.

If you want to create curves, shapes, and smooth rough edges or remove paint material from the surface, go for a belt sander.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q. Do I need a belt sander if I have a planer?

Ans: Yes, you may need it. Most people think planer and belt sander are used for the same purpose, but Planer only can make a flat surface, which doesn’t mean it can make a smooth surface.

Because planes remove many materials, but to make a smooth surface, we need to constantly remove a small number of materials, which a belt sander can do.

Q. What type of belt sander is worth buying?

Ans: For several reasons, I would recommend people to go for a handheld belt sander. Because it is easy to handle, small in size, but can perform a lot of work, and for home-working, you should go for a handheld belt sander.

Q. What is best to buy a belt sander or Planer?

Ans: One used to remove material, and another used to flatten a wood surface. Because of their different field of work, you need to buy both a belt sander and Planer.


Both belt sander and planer machine are used for finishing the product, but their working principle and working area are different. A belt sander is a low-cost machine that is easy to use; still, its working accuracy is not great. 

On the other hand, the planer machine is high cost, high power consumption, but it has great accuracy for finishing the product. Because of their different working functions, I recommend you choose both for your job.

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