Sanding drywall is a fundamental part of installing drywall because you have to smooth out the plaster compound. While most prefer using hand sanders for drywall, there are several power sanders you can use for drywall and sanding plaster walls before painting. In this article, we will go over the details of sanding drywall.
Manual Sanding Blocks
Manual sanding blocks are ideal for small jobs like repairing an area of broken drywall and sanding or smoothing corners and edges. Your typical sanding block will be near the following dimensions:
- Width – 2.75 inches
- Length – 4 inches
- Height – 1 inch
Manual sanding blocks work best with fine and medium grits and also come with different angles for working in tight spots and not scratching nearby drywall. A sanding sponge is another popular sanding block attachment, perfect for corners and edges of the drywall.
Orbital Drywall Sanders and Sheet Sanders
Orbital Drywall Sanders
An orbital drywall sander is a versatile, handheld power tool that will work for a massive range of home improvement jobs like removing drywall compounds, paint, and rust. The Ridgid r2601 is one of the top-rated sanders on our best orbital sander list, and a prime example of the type of sander that is fit for just about any job, including drywall work. The only downfall is that it’s a handheld tool so if you need to reach a high place you will need to upgrade your equipment.
A sheet sander is just like an orbital sander but works a bit differently. First off, a sheet sander accepts standard sheets of sandpaper whereas an orbital sander uses sandpaper with a different backing, like hook and loop. Second, an orbital sander uses random elliptical movement and a sheet sander just moves in a simple circular motion. For this reason, a sheet sander is basically like hand sanding but way, way faster.
Portable Cable Sanders
Portable cable sanders are like the big brother of orbital sanders. Used mainly in commercial jobs, it has up to a 13-foot extension that is perfect for ceilings and high walls. On top of not needing a ladder anymore, they also cover a much larger area than normal sanders. The two main cons are that they are heavy, up to 8 pounds, and cost somewhere in the range of $800. Overall, if you’re ever left wondering how to sand plaster walls that are tall – this is your solution.
Dustless Turbo Drywall Sanders
If you primarily work on small jobs around the house then a dustless turbo drywall sander is like a dream come true. Lightweight just like other handheld sanders but comes with a vacuum and bag that collects the dust as you sand. If you spend enough money you can get a dustless drywall sander that comes with a boom extension for those hard-to-reach spots.