Which Sandblasting Media Should You Use? Find Out

Sandblasting is one of the most effective cleaning techniques to consider. It is versatile and can be used on surfaces like concrete and metal. Generally, sandblasting helps restore rusty equipment, smooth surfaces for painting, and blast oil and other contaminants from surfaces. However, sandblasting also involves using a wide range of abrasive media to clean surfaces. And typically, each abrasive medium works best for different applications. Unfortunately, choosing the suitable abrasive medium for your sandblasting project may not always be straightforward because there are many choices to choose from, making the selection quite overwhelming. Therefore, here are quick tips to help you select suitable sandblasting media.


The abrasive media's shape can make all the difference in the efficiency of your sandblasting exercise. Typically, sandblasting media come with round and angular shapes. Round media have no edges while their angular counterparts have sharp edges. And generally, what you need to achieve from your sandblasting technique will help you select the correct shape. For instance, if you intend to repaint a surface after your sandblasting exercise, it would be best to leave the surface rough enough for the new paint or finish to adhere to properly. Generally, angular media like garnets and crushed glass would work best as the sharp edges help cut into the surface to create an anchor profile.

On the other hand, if you have no intention of repainting the surface and would rather leave it smooth, you won't need an anchor profile. Therefore, go for round media like glass beads and plastic pellets for such applications.


The media's hardness is another vital aspect to keep in mind when selecting one for your sandblasting project. Typically, harder media are more abrasive than their softer counterparts. And similarly, your project needs can help you understand the right media hardness to select. For instance, harder media are perfect for applications that involve removing some types of rust and corrosion. On the other hand, soft media are ideal for removing dirt, grease, oil, gunk, and paint. Therefore, evaluate your project needs and before choosing the sandblasting media.


Density also matters when selecting sandblasting media. Generally, denser media tend to have more impact over the surface you are blasting because they have more energy over small surface areas, which helps them create deeper profiles on the surface. This is ideal for projects that require repainting or finishing afterward. Therefore, if you only need to do light surface cleaning or remove paint from surfaces, softer and less-dense media would be the ideal choice.