Whether you're grinding metal or cutting tile, an angle grinder can come in handy and is easy to use. Sometimes, the disc needs to be replaced. Although replacing an angle-grinder, or side-grinder, disc takes a little bit of know-how, it takes only minutes to complete.
There are a few different ways to change the disc on your side grinder, depending on the tools you have available. The easiest method is to use the spanners included from the factory. However, if you’ve bought your angle grinder second-hand and the spanners are missing, there are other ways to change the disc without the factory-made spanners.
Step 1 – Disconnect the Power
Warning: Failure to disconnect the power can result in injury. Ensure that your grinder's power is completely off before continuing to the next step.
To avoid injury from accidental use, it’s important to disconnect the power source from your angle grinder. For a corded angle grinder, make sure it is unplugged from the wall outlet.
If you have a cordless angle grinder, remove the battery from the tool. Removing the battery will also make the tool lighter and easier to manipulate as you change the grinding disc.
Step 2 – Remove the Disc
Removing the Disc With Factory Spanners
Your new grinder will come with two distinct spanners that look like flattened wrenches. One spanner will resemble a normal wrench, while the other will look like a two-pronged fork. Insert the prongs into the two holes that appear in the drive bolt between the disc and the angle-grinder motor.
Use the wrench spanner to secure the bolt on the bottom of the disc. Turn the pronged spanner in the opposite direction of the disc direction arrow, located on the bottom, while using the wrench spanner to keep the disc from turning.
There may also be a button on your side grinder that will hold the disc in place. Turn the nut until the disc comes away from the tool.
Removing the Disc With Improvised Spanners
Attach the vice grips securely to the bolt holding the disc to the drive bolt. Use the vice grips to keep the disc from spinning, and insert the screwdriver into one of the holes between the disc and the angle-grinder motor, meant for the spanner prongs.
Pull the screwdriver in the direction opposite of the arrow on the disc. If it does not loosen right away, use a hammer to force the screwdriver to turn.
Removing the Disc Without Spanners
Using the palm of your hand, strike the disc in the opposite direction of the arrow on the disc. This should loosen the nut enough to remove it with your fingers.
If this doesn’t work, you can use pliers to break the old disc off in pieces, allowing you better access to the drive bolt and attachment nut.
Step 3 – Install a New Disc
Put your new grind disc on the drive bolt in the same way the old one sat on the drive bolt. It’s important to use a disc made for your particular make and model of side grinder. If you are not certain, take the old disc to your hardware store and ask an employee.
Finally, hand-tighten the new disc in the opposite direction from which you removed the old disc. Your side grinder should now function properly. If you need to replace the grinder's motor after installing a new disc, you can easily do this now.