Those days of using a manual tool that you keep moving back and forth across a block of wood are a thing of the past because the newest planers on the market will do all the hard work for you. These products are available in different sizes and styles that you can use in your workshop, in a customer’s home or on any job site.
Though we included the best overall planer that money can buy, we also identified ones that fit different categories.
How to Choose the Right Type
One of the first things you need to think about when choosing a wood planer is the size. Some are quite large and designed for use in the same spot day after day like a workshop. Others weigh less and are portable for carrying to different job sites.
What type are you looking for? A jointer planer is a tool that will let you plane the wood and make joints, while a handheld planer is one designed for using with one or both hands and while away from your workshop.
Electric models can vary in size but will require a nearby outlet to use. You’ll also find thickness planers that let you shave off a large piece of wood with one motion.
If you need a durable and dependable wood planer that you can use years from now, you might spend around $2,000, but there are other planers available for $1,000 or less.
Many of the portable and handheld models cost well under $500. Our list of the top planers includes models at all price points.
Many users swear by those that come with double-sided blades because these blades cut more efficiently and last longer.
Even if you choose a planer with a single blade, you should still ensure that it comes with a carbide blade. Carbide blades are more durable and can handle even heavy-duty jobs.
The depth scale is what you will use to determine the depth of your cuts and how much of a board you remove. Many planers have a depth scale on the front or side that uses inches.
If you choose one that uses metric measurements, you may have a harder time making the accurate cuts that you want.
Though you probably assume that all models use electric power, some manufacturers do make ones that come with a rechargeable battery. Most include a charger for that battery too.
When shopping for an electric model, you’ll want to look at the cord length to get an idea of how close you need to be near an outlet to use the tool.
Look at the overall capacity and the type of boards that you can use with it, including both the length and the width of those boards.
For smaller models, you especially need to pay attention to width. This will tell you how many times you need to go across the board to get an even finish.
Cutting and smoothing wood can kick up a lot of dust, which is why you need to look at the dust collection features available on top options.
Larger models often have a system that works with a vacuum to suck up any dust around the planer. Smaller models may have a blower that actually blows the dust and chips away from you, and some of these smaller ones will actually let you adjust this blower to the right or the left based on how you work.
Top Choices On The Market Today
1. SHOP FOX W1754 20-Inch
The top rated overall option available on the market today is this SHOP FOX W1754 20-Inch with Built-In Mobile Base, which is one of the larger and more heavy-duty models that is perfect for your workshop.
We love that it comes with a cast-iron base that has built-in casters for moving it as well as the cast-iron extension wings on each side. Those wings are great for holding plywood sheets and long wood boards and for giving those woods a smooth and even finish.
Even with those wheels, you won’t worry about it shifting because it features four supports inside the mobile base as well as locking mechanisms that lock the table down.
A magnetic safety switch prevents the planer from coming on after a power outage or surge and keeps the motor from overheating too. The power switch and emergency stop button have a convenient location on the side too.
2. DEWALT DW735 13-Inch Two Speed Thickness
We named the DEWALT DW735 13-Inch Two Speed the top thickness planer because it comes with some great features like a chip ejection system that uses a fan to gently blow sawdust and wood chips away while also vacuuming those chips and pulling the debris into an easy to clean bag.
Its cutter head, which as a maximum RPM of 10,000, actually features three knives that work together to help you finish faster. A gear box inside operates at two different speeds and can cut up to 179 times per inch.
This model is easy to use and just as easy to set up too. You can hook a vacuum hose up to the back to work with its dust collection system, and it features two handles on the top for moving it. It also comes with a 15 amp motor with a 20,000 RPM rating.
3. Jet JJP-10BTOS 10-Inch Bench-Top Jointer/Planer
The top jointer and planer combo is this Jet JJP-10BTOS 1, which has a maximum cutting width of 10 inches and a maximum cutting depth of 1/8 of an inch. This maximum cutting depth applies to both the planer and the jointer.
A power button on the front turns on the tool, and you can use the crank handle on the top to adjust the cutting depth based on the project at hand or the type of wood that you use.
With a cutting speed of 18,000 cuts per minute, this model can remove a thin or thick piece of wood and leave behind a smooth and even finish in minutes or less.
It also comes with a heavy-duty steel base that turns this into a mobile unit. The casters on the bottom move smoothly when wheeling it.
4. DEWALT DW734 15 Amp 12-1/2-Inch Benchtop
Another good thickness option that is suitable for most jobs is the DEWALT DW734 15 Amp 12-1/2-Inch, which can easily set up and use on top of the workbench in your workshop.
It has a 15 amp motor that comes on with the touch of a button and an emergency switch that surrounds the power button and lets you stop the motor to prevent an accident or emergency.
This is also a highly portable planer that features handles on each side for taking it on the job with you.
Don’t let its portable design leave you thinking that it can’t meet your needs though because it also features a 20,000 RPM rating and three cutterhead knives. The model comes with a long infeed table for working with thicker or longer boards and a longer outfeed table that holds the boards steady.
5. Triton TPL180 1500W Triple-Blade
When you need a choice that you can use on the job site and at home or in your shop, this Triton TPL180 1500W Triple-Blade is the right tool for you.
With an impressive three blades inside, this model will work on any type of wood and leave behind a smooth finish that looks like you spent hours sanding.
It has a planing width of seven-inches that reduces the time you spend working and lets you get more done with each pass of the tool.
The depth control dial on this planer gives you 10 different depths to choose from and lets you remove larger chunks or thinner sheets from any type of wood. We really like the adjustable handle on the top that has a textured grip you can hold on to with both hands also.
6. Delta Power Tools 37-071 6 Inch MIDI-Bench Jointer
Turn almost any bench, cabinet or table into the center of your workshop with this Delta Power Tools 37-071 6 Inch MIDI-Bench Jointer, which you can use right on that base.
It has its own cast-iron base that absorbs vibrations to keep your hands from shaking, and this base also keeps the jointer from walking or moving across your bench. The included fence allows you to keep your hands free and still keep your wood stable, and this fence allows you to make angled and beveled cuts.
As a planer, it can make cuts at a maximum depth of 1/8 of an inch, but you can also make cuts at a 45-degree or 90-degree angle. The jointer features a dust collection port on one side and a handy power button on the opposite end that also acts as an emergency stop button.
7. Delta Power Tools 22-555 13 Inch Portable Thickness
Smaller shops like the one you use at home don’t always have the space available for a professional option, but this Delta Power Tools 22-555 13 In model comes with features usually only found on larger planers but has a compact size guaranteed to fit in your shop.
Four columns actually sit inside and provide the stability necessary to keep the equipment from shifting and walking, and it features a dust port that you can use on either the right or left side.
Both the infeed and outfeed table are adjustable to keep the boards you use from sniping and to accommodate boards longer than the planer. Dual-sided blades inside are disposable and let you switch out the blades easily without making a lot of adjustments.
It also features a crank handle on top for adjusting the speed at which the boards pass through the center.
8. WEN 6560 10-Amp 6-Inch Benchtop Jointer
As long as you have a durable cabinet or bench that won’t shift, you can use this WEN 6560 10-Amp 6-Inch Benchtop Jointer when working with hard woods as well as wood sheets.
At more than 28-inches long, this choice provides more working space than any other planer, but it also features a double-blade inside that does the smooth and precise cutting you want.
Its 10 amp motor can even make 20,000 cuts in a single minute.
Though you will need your own bench, this benchtop jointer has a cast-iron base that fully supports the tool and keeps the whole thing from shifting while also cutting back on vibrations.
A dust port helps keep your work area clean, and the jointer comes with a dust bag that works with that port. You also get fence pieces for making bevel cuts of up to 45 degrees.
9. WEN 6550 12.5-Inch 15A Benchtop Thickness
WEN makes a number of affordable power tools that cost less like this option, which comes with a granite table that acts like a protective feature.
This table sits underneath the planer and allows the wood to move smoothly across the top and under the blade, and the granite won’t develop scratches or chips like other materials often do.
Though it might look small when you see it online, this planer can accommodate boards of up to 12.5-inches wide and six-inches thick.
An adjustable depth knob lets you adjust the depth down to 3/23-inch, and you can use this knob to change the depth with each pass you make or to set the maximum depth for use on multiple boards.
It features a dust port that you can connect to a vacuum and a 15 amp motor with a feed rate of 26 feet per minute.
10. DEWALT DW680K 7 Amp 3-1/4-Inch Handheld
Durable and practical are just two of the words that describe this model, which comes backed by a long warranty.
With a 7 amp motor inside, this planer will work with all the harder woods that you use and can plane softer woods without leaving behind uneven edges or splinters.
It has a 3/32-inch maximum cutting depth that limits the number of times you run it across the same piece of wood.
Compatible with different blades for use on framing and edging jobs, the planer has a flat finish that makes it suitable for rabbet jobs.
A calibrated depth adjustable knob located right on the front lets you select the depth that you want to cut and eliminates the need to reset the planer. It also features a longer cord that lets you work further from an outlet.
11. POWERTEC PL1251 12-1/2-Inch 15-Amp
Benchtop planers are often quite expensive, but this one gives you lots of power and costs as much as half what you expected to pay.
Unlike other planers that require a gauge and other fancy tools to change blades, this one features an EZ blade replacement system that lets you more quickly change blades without using any tools. It has four columns hidden inside its outer case that keep the planer from moving and add some extra stability to the tool.
With carrying handles located on each side, this model is also portable and easy to take with you, and as it has a compact design and weighs less than 70 pounds, you’ll find that you can store it anywhere in your workshop.
POWERTEC added a return roller system inside that rolls as the board moves to keep it smoothly moving across the blades too.
12. Makita KP0800K 3-1/4-Inch
This Makita KP0800K 3-1/4-Inch model has a simple design that ensures anyone who picks it up can use it right away without fumbling with the tool or pouring over the manual for hours.
Weighing less than six pounds, this planer is great for longer jobs because it won’t cause discomfort in your hand, and it has a trigger grip in the top that can increase your comfort too. You can adjust the cutting features to cut up to 3.25-inches wide and up to 3/32-inches deep with just one pass.
Double-sided carbide blades cut through wood like a knife through hot butter to provide a smooth finish that might not even needed sanding. Those blades have an easy replacement system that lets you remove and replace the old blade or install a different type of blade in minutes.
It also has a two-blade cutterhead with a 17,000 RPM rating and a 6.5 amp motor.
13. Bosch PL2632K
With a 16,500 RPM, this Bosch PL2632K can make quick work of all the boards you need to plane. It has a release button that you can use with either hand to keep the planer from turning on and a lock down button that you can press, which will keep the motor running when working on longer or larger jobs.
A stand attached to the bottom creates the perfect spot for resting or leaning the tool between cuts too.
Shoes on the front and the rear feature an aluminum construction and improve your accuracy. This planer has two blades inside and a convertible design that lets you convert the tool for working with a larger steel blade. It also comes with two dust ports that work with an included dust bag to capture chips and debris as well as a blade wrench and a carrying case.
14. Black & Decker 7698K 5.2 Amp 3-1/4-Inch
When we decided to rank the top wood options, we knew that we wanted to include at least one model that was suitable for those just starting out and those who couldn’t afford to drop a lot of money on a single tool, and the model we selected for those shoppers is the Black & Decker 7698K.
While its 5.2 amp motor is slightly smaller and less powerful than others you might consider, it’s still strong enough for most applications. It has a 5/64-inch cutting capacity and a 16,500 RPM rating that proves the planer is more powerful than it looks.
The depth adjustment handle on the front has 10 positive stops and helps you change the depth at which is cuts to the measurement that you need. It also features a groove for doing more detailed and intricate work as well as a maximum 5/16-inch depth for doing rabbet work.
Our Overall Choice
Our choice is this SHOP FOX W1754 20-Inch (Check Price on Amazon.com), which comes with a heavy-duty cast-iron base that features four support beams, locking features and casters that make it mobile.
This planer also has cast-iron extension wings that let you plane longer boards and work with flexible sheets without worrying about trying to hold onto those pieces.
We also like that SHOP FOX made this planer so easy to use and that the manufacturer included a crank wheel on one side for more easily moving boards through the planer and a magnetic switch that stops the motor from overheating and prevents thermal overloads.
Our Top Handheld Option
We selected the Triton TPL180 1500W Triple-Blade (Check Price on Amazon.com) as the top handheld model because this is one of the only planers we found that features an impressive three blades inside that help you do work faster and give boards a smoother finish with no splinters left behind.
The 1,500 watt motor is powerful enough for using with harder woods, and it has a seven-inch width that reduces the number of pass overs you need to make on the wood. It also features an adjustable handle on the top that can support one or both hands as well as a textured grip to keep your hands firmly in place.
Top Jointer Option
Though we saw some smaller jointer planer combos that do a nice job, we found that the larger Jet JJP-10BTOS 10-Inch Bench-Top Jointer/Planer (Check Price on Amazon.com) does an even better job on most planing applications.
Both features have a maximum cutting depth of 1/8 of an inch, and you’ll find that it can make 18,000 cuts in 60 seconds to help you move through cutting and planing jobs faster than you ever did before.
Jet also includes a durable steel stand that turns this into a floor model jointer that you can use in your workshop, though you can also remove the tool and use it on a bench or cabinet.
Our Top Thickness Option
DEWALT has a great reputation for making tools that work well, last a long time and are affordable, which explains why its DW735 13-Inch Two Speed Thickness Planer (Check Price on Amazon.com) is our top choice for a thickness planer.
This planer has a 15 amp motor inside that produces an RPM of 20,000, but it also has a cutterhead with an RPM rating of 10,000 that you can use when making wider or deeper cuts.
Its two-speed gear box can make up to 179 cuts in a single inch, and it comes with a chip ejection system that uses a fan like a vacuum to push debris out of the planer.
Our Top Electric Option
Some electric planers come with such a short cord that you’ll have a hard time moving as you work, but this DEWALT DW680K 7 Amp 3-1/4-Inch Planer (Check Price on Amazon.com) features a longer cord that lets you move anywhere you want without getting in your way.
Its 7 amp motor and maximum cutting depth of 3/32 of an inch ensures that you can remove more of the wood in one pass and that the finish will remain nice and smooth. It has a calibrated depth knob for easily adjusting the depth of your cuts, and it is compatible with carbide and other types of blades for different jobs too.