Porter-Cable 7424XP Polisher Review

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Review of Porter-Cable 7424XP Polisher

Editor Rating: 4.8/5

Build Quality
Power
Features
Price

Review Summary

The Porter-Cable 7424XP is a high-quality, long-lasting polisher that can turn a rusted heap into a gleaming showcase. Appropriate for professionals but especially popular with DIYers, it allows you to change out any number of backer heads and buffing pads in order to achieve the perfect finish for any vehicle you’re working on, plus it has an easy-to-use variable speed feature that allows you to precisely control the head spin speed. And it will work just as well on your boat as your car.

If you are still buffing, polishing, and waxing your car by hand, it’s time to upgrade, and this is the perfect tool to start with. And with a random orbital polisher, you’re sure to wind up with a scratch-free, mirror finish.

Porter-Cable has a deserved reputation for quality tools that last, and this model is no exception. And although users might like if it came with a library of accessorizing backers and pads, selling this polisher without those makes it a true bargain and allows you to customize for every project.

Porter-Cable 7424 XP Polisher – A Quick Look

Pros
  • Small and reasonably-priced polisher
  • Variable speed
  • Takes a variety of backers and pads (sold separately)
  • Lasts forever
  • Versatile – works well on both cars and boats
Cons
  • Users would appreciate more included accessories
  • Included polishing pad not high quality

Specifications

Power input: 4.5 Amps

Wheel diameter: 6” rotary

Speed: Variable speed/2,500-6,800 opms

Handed: Left or right handed

Weight: 6 lbs.

Dimensions: 11.5”x10.5”x6”

Spindle thread: 5/16-24

Includes: Tool, polishing pad, side handle, wrench

Power cord length: 10’

Warranty: 3-year limited/1-year free service/90-day money back guarantee

Porter-Cable 7424XP Polishing the hood

Performance

This tool is hugely popular, especially with the DIY crowd, because it really delivers on its promise. It’s very user-friendly, and when used with the right car care products for the task at hand, it delivers fantastic results. Whether you’re tackling swirls, scratches, or oxidation, and whether you’re using clay bar, wax, or polish, this tool does an applause-worthy job in a faster than you’d expect amount of time.

Variable speed motor

The PC 7346SP has a variable speed motor with the dial control right at the base of the unit. While you control the tool with one hand, you can use the other to raise or lower the speed, which ranges from 2,500 to 6,800 opms, giving you exceptional and precise control. Anyone working with a delicate finish will appreciate this detail. With the right combination of accessories coupled with its variable speed motor, this tool can tackle the full spectrum of car finish jobs.

Porter-Cable produces quality tools

Porter-Cable has a terrific reputation for producing quality, long-lasting tools. Although there is some commentary about slipping standards due to offshore parts and production, by and large, they are still very well-regarded. People own their Porter-Cable tools for years, even with frequent use. Part of that reputation is attributable to their commitment to warranty fulfillment and customer satisfaction, so that if you do wind up with a lemon, it’s likely that Porter-Cable will take care of it for you.

Porter-Cable 7424XP used on Hummer

FAQ

Could I use this tool as a sander?
With the right backing head and a sandpaper disc, yes. In fact, Porter-Cable sells this same tool as a random orbital sander/polisher under model number 7346SP. However, you probably don’t want to gunk up your polisher with sawdust and risk rubbing grit into your car’s surface. We recommend you use this polisher strictly for polishing.

Some users have also had success polishing concrete and stone, especially countertops, with this model.

What size backing heads and pads will this accommodate?
You can use any size between 3 inches and 6 inches.

Can I use it right out of the box?
Not exactly. You’ll probably want an extension cord and some car care product, but otherwise, it is ready for use as it is sold. Many users invest in additional pads, too.

Porter-Cable 7424XP used on orange car

What the Users Say

Most users are generally happy with their Porter-Cable 7346SP. It handles the entire spectrum of polishing tasks, automotive and marine. First-time users are astounded by what this machine can do for their cars and seem to immediately become hooked on home-detailing after using this. Many describe this tool as “safe” because it allows them to get rid of swirls and other defects without letting them burn through the paint.

It seems to be most popular with car detailers and they appreciate the variable speed motor and the interchangeability of polishing heads. This crowd is doing everything from a simple wax to buffing out serious scratches and they all give it high marks. It only comes with the one polishing pad, which some complain is low quality, but most users are only too happy to augment that with exactly what they need.

This machine has well-liked ergonomics, with few complaints about vibration, balance, or fatigue even after hours of use. The second handle, which can be put on for either righties or lefties, is not as much of a perk as you might expect, although no one is complaining about it. The weight is appropriate for a machine of its size.

There is a small but vocal contingent that complains about lemons – motors that burn out or machines that vibrate excessively. On the other hand, though, are users who talk about having these tools last for a dozen years, despite regular use and abuse. Buried in the complaints are consistent references to Porter-Cable sending and resending replacement machines.

Conclusion

There are those who care what their cars look like, and then there’s everyone else.  If you take pride in your vehicle’s appearance and you’re ready to put your time and energy into making it the best-looking auto on the block, you’re going to need a polisher.  An experienced detailer will be happy with the PC 7424XP, but an amateur will be thrilled with it.  Be careful though – once you buy one of these, your weekends will be planned around buffing and polishing your car!

About the Author Adam Harris

Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!