If you want to keep your car’s exterior looking as perfect as the day you bought it, then you need to be willing to invest in a good polisher. A reliable polisher will give you the ability to buff the exterior of your car without causing damage to the paint job.
Polishers also double as sanders for woodworking applications. Simply detach the polishing pad, attach a sanding pad, and you have a completely different type of tool ready to go.
If you have a car but haven’t invested in a car polisher, then it might be time to considering purchasing one. Below are just some of the benefits you can get from a good polisher.
The traditional method of buffing your car includes using a piece of cloth that you repeatedly rub across the outside panels of your car. This can produce some good, shiny results, but it takes a lot of time and effort to do.
Think back to the times you brought your car to your local auto shop for a waxing. You probably thought that the workers use some sort of magical tool to make your car shine when, in fact, they employ polishers to get the job done. Furthermore, using one is extremely easy and requires no special skills; just a steady hand and patience.
Finding the Right Polisher
A quick search on the Internet will yield thousands of results, making it extremely difficult to choose a good model. Don’t worry. The following segment will inform you of which specs and features should be taken into consideration.
Corded vs. Cordless
The first decision to make is choosing between a corded or cordless polisher. Corded and cordless power tools have their own general set of pros and cons, but when it comes to polishers, we highly recommend getting a corded model. This is because larger motors are needed to reach higher speeds, something that most cordless models don’t feature. You can solve the problem of short power cords with the help of a quality extension cord.
There are two numbers that are used to measure how fast polishers can polish. These are RPM and OPM. How fast the buffer spins depends on the motor installed in the unit. The best models should reach a maximum RPM of up to 600 and OPM of around 6,000. Of course, higher speeds translate into a greater loss of control, so it would be great to have some way to control how quickly the unit buffs.
This is the system that can help you gain control when using a polisher is a variable speed dial, switch, or knob. The best models should allow you to control how quickly the attachment moves, especially since different surfaces require different speeds to prevent damage.
Obviously, a high-spinning tool like a polisher will produce tremors up your arm, potentially causing fatigue and pain. Look for a model with a comfortable, rubber handle; is large but a manageable size; and doesn’t vibrate too wildly when running at its highest speed setting.
Like any handheld power tool, the weight of the unit plays a role in determining how easy it is to maneuver. Corded buffers come in all shapes, sizes, and weights. They commonly weight between 5 and 15 pounds. We recommend purchasing a model that’s easy to lift. Maybe a little weight isn’t a bad thing if it helps balance the unit when using it.
Top 5 Corded Polishers
Because there are literally thousands of different polisher models to choose from, it’ll be nearly impossible for you to determine which would best suit your car-buffing needs. Don’t fret. We’ll provide you with our picks for the top five polisher models.
5 PORTER-CABLE 7424XP 6-Inch Variable-Speed Polisher
The first item on our list is the popular 7424XP form PORTER-CABLE. This polisher features a 4.5-amp motor that can deliver up to 350 RPM. The unit comes with a variable speed dial that lets users adjust the orbiting speed from between 2,500 and 6,800 OPM. The side-handle bar can be removed to accommodate both left-handed and right-handed users.
The unit, fully assembled, weighs only 5.75 pounds, so there’s virtually no risk of fatigue. Upon purchase, you get a 6-inch polishing pad, though the unit can accept attachments of almost any diameter, provided that they come with between 5/16 to 24 threaded spindles.
4 DEWALT DWP849 7-Inch/9-Inch Variable Speed Polisher
DEWALT’s DWP849 is another great option. It packs a beefy 12.5-amp motor that is fully adjustable using the speed dial. Users can choose how quickly their polishing pad spins to up to 600 RPM and 3,500 OPM. The touch-sensitive speed trigger adds extra control to users who want to work with a range of different speeds that is capped off at the chosen speed setting.
The large spindle-lock button makes it easy to detach and attach different polishing and sanding pads to the unit, so there’s less time needed to make changes. The unit weighs only 6.6 pounds, maneuvers well, and the side handlebar can be attached to either the left or right side of the unit.
3 Bosch 6.5 Amp Corded Random Orbital Sander/Polisher 1250DEVS
The 1250DEVS from Bosch is an easy-to-use orbital sander/polisher that comes with a wide range of features. The unit comes equipped with a 6.5-amp motor that delivers up to 600 RPM and 6,500 OPM. Using the variable speed dial, you can set up how quickly you want the unit to spin and orbit depending on the material you’re working on.
The 1250DEVS comes with two modes: a normal mode for regular sanding and polishing and turbo mode for an aggressive first-sanding on rough stock. This model also has a dampening system which applies a bit of moisture when sanding to prevent leaving marks on the surface of your materials.
2 PORTER-CABLE 7346SP 6-Inch Random Orbit Sander with Polishing Pad
The next item is another one of PORTER-CABLE’s beauties: the 7346SP. This 6-inch model comes with a 4.5-amp motor that delivers up to 350 RPM and 6,800 OPM. The unit weighs only six pounds and is easy to navigate along surfaces.
It also features a variable speed dial to help users control how quickly the sander or buffer should work.
The 6-pound proprietary balance attaches to the pad, making it easier to control while locking the attachment in place. The side handle can be moved from left to right, depending on the user’s preference. It also comes with a wide range of different sanding and polishing pads so you can use it right out of the box.
1 Makita 9237CX3 7-Inch Variable Speed Polisher-Sander
The final product on our list is the Makita-made 9237CX3. This is a 7-inch orbital sander/polisher that delivers up to an astounding 3,200 RPM and up to 6,800 OPM. The high-RPM speed should only be used for sanding applications when going over rough stock.
Despite the high-speed rotation, the ingenious pads included in the kit helps in preventing fling-off of any polish, paste, or wax. Starting the polisher up is also a smooth experience that doesn’t cause the unit to vibrate too crazily.
The rubber loop-style handle is also an ingenious feature which won’t scratch your car or wooden board.
Polishers are great tools to have if you want to reduce the amount of time you spend rubbing wax on and off your car. If you enjoy making furniture or fixtures with wood, you can also benefit from a polisher which can double as a sander.
No longer will you have to run your hands back and forth over wood stock to get it to your desired smoothness.
When looking for a polisher, there are several aspects to consider. The first thing to consider is the speed. Looking at the unit’s motor could give you an indication of how quickly the unit spins and orbits, meaning that you’ll spend less work on sanding and polishing applications.
Controlling the speed of the unit is important, and with a variable speed system, you have total control over how quickly or slowly you want the polishing/sanding pad to rotate and orbit. Also, you should look for a model that’s comfortable to grip and won’t weight your arm down.
In this article, we’ve provided you with our picks of the best five corded polishers. We would highly recommend any one of these units, but the model we favor over everything else is the Makita 9237CX3.
This 7-inch model can reach the highest RPM speed out all the units on our list, making it the perfect solution for high-speed sanding or low-speed polishing jobs. It’s also extremely comfortable, won’t cause fatigue, and the rubber loop-style handle won’t cause any unwanted damage to your car’s paint job or your wooden boards.