How to Use a Reciprocating Saw

When it comes to using a reciprocating saw, it’s essential to know what steps you should follow, and just how to keep yourself and others present safe. During this article, we’ll look at the steps you need to take when using this equipment and safety tips. We will also look at the type of reciprocating saw of cuts that a reciprocating saw can be used for.

What is a reciprocating saw?

A reciprocating saw is the type of saw you can use for cutting curves into surfaces and is a favorite of those in the demolition industry. With these saws you can create varying cuts with shallow blades being more maneuverable than deeper ones. These saws can be used to create mitre cuts by angling the body of the saw whilst working with it so check on Toolversed comparisons before making a decision.


Reciprocating SawWhen using a reciprocating saw, you want to be certain that the saw is turned off when changing blades and accessories to avoid injury. Remember that blades can be hot once you’ve finished cutting, so let them cool down before switching them over. Check that the area you are about to use the saw on does not have live electrical wires or water/gas pipes if you are using the saw on a wall. Always use safety goggles to protect your eyes, and if cutting metal, the use of ear guards is highly recommended.

These types of saws can have a bite, and if it pulls out of a cut, banging into the surface and cause you to lose balance as it bucks. When you’re using one whilst up a ladder, bare this in mind and remember to ensure that someone is holding the ladder to stop it and you from toppling over. Another way the blade can ‘buck’ is if it binds (snags) in the material you are cutting – the blade may stop but the body of the machine keeps going, in this instance, turn the machine off before attempting to remove it from the material.

Using the saw

When using a reciprocating saw, the first thing you want to do is set the orbital action to match the material you are using (wood, metal, etc). Next select the required blade and insert it into the saw by positioning the blade against the guide roller and releasing the blade change lever to secure it (making sure before you do this that the machine is not turned on). Now you’re ready to start the cut by resting the front edge of the base plate against the material at a right angle. Don’t forget to adjust the speed and rotary actions before starting up the saw, if necessary, and then progress along the guideline to make the cut.

Reciprocating saws can also be used to cut holes in the centre of wood, etc, by drilling a hole into the material surface and then inserting the blade into the hole. Once again, make sure to follow the guideline as you cut.