When sanding a floor, you need a floor sander, but if stairs are involved, you'll also need an edge sander. Both sanders are necessary to produce good results.
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A floor sander is a more powerful version of a drum sander. A cylindrical piece of sandpaper fits over the drum, and a lever drops the drum to make contact with the floor. The machine must be moving when contact is made. Dropping the drum on the floor when the machine is stationary may cause the drum to cut divots in the floor.
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