Sandpaper Grades and Their Uses



When sanding, start with the lower number Coarse grits before progressing up to higher numbered Fine grits. Use Fine grits to add that smooth touch to your finished pieces.

Sanding a piece might take just two grits or you might have to work through 4 or 5 to get to the finish that you want.

When sanding, never skip more than one grit. You might start with 80-grit and progress up to 120-grit. Then, move up to 180-grit for the best finish. Sand bare wood to 180-grit or 220-grit smooth before applying finishes.

Use a Very Fine grit sandpaper or non-woven cloth pad between finish coats to smooth the finish.

Shop for Abrasives - Sandpaper, Abrasive Rolls, Discs, Pads, Sponges, and more

Sandpaper Grades
Retail SurfPrep Industrial Uses
Super Fine
Extra Fine
Super Micro Fine+ 600 Polishing very hard materials such as stone, plastic, ceramics. Fine sanding with SurfPrep tools.
Super Extra Micro Fine 500
Super Micro Fine 400
Micro Fine+320
Very Fine Micro Fine 280 Smoothing finishes between coats
Super Fine Extra+240
Super Fine+220
Fine Super Fine 180 Smoothing bare wood
Very Fine150
Medium Fine 100 Shaping wood; first sanding of soft woods
Coarse   50 Removing paint; rough sanding and shaping
Very Coarse Coarse 36 First sanding of bare wood floors
Extra Coarse   20 Machine sanding of painted or otherwise finished floors


Non-Woven Sanding Pads

Non-Woven abrasives are color-coded to indicate their different grits. They use industry standard colors and most manufacturers of non-woven abrasives conform to this Standard.

Industry Standard Non-Woven Abrasives color-coding:

  • White pads - extra fine, approximately 600-grit
  • Gray pads - 220-grit (SurfPrep - 800-grit)
  • Maroon pads - 150-grit (SurfPrep - 320-grit)
  • Green pads - 100-grit

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