Safety Tips When Using a Circular Saw

The circular saw has become one of the most frequently used saws used in DIY home improvement and professional projects alike. It is a versatile power tool that can cut a myriad of materials such as metal, wood, cement, fiberglass, brick, slate and most plastics. With that kind of all-around use, it is important to know the basics of such a tool. Accidents with power tools happen quite frequently, so knowing how to use your tools is just as important as actually using them.

This article is a guide for anyone who owns or is thinking about renting or buying a circular saw, and will cover the basics of safety and precautions that you need to take before, during and after using your circular saw. No matter if you are at the workshop or jobsite, safety is key to a successful project.

Circular Saw Safety Tips

Tip #1: Wear Protective Gear

Before you even plug in the saw, make sure you are stocked up on your personal protective gear (PPE) for our project. PPE helps to greatly reduce the risk of physical injury during the use of power tools. 

PPE gear can consist of many different types of safety wearables and for circular saws, you’ll want to wear the following: 

  • Safety glasses or goggles to protect the eyes from projectiles and dust 
  • Respirator or dust mask when cutting 
  • Hearing protection for your ears 
  • Coveralls to protect your clothing

Tip #2: Learn How to Properly Handle the Saw

No one knows how to use something just by looking at it, so don’t feel bad if you need to read the instructions a few times or go online to watch a few “how to” videos before you get started using the saw. Using it properly is incredibly important and improper use can end up not only ruining the project you are working on but it could also cause an accident.

Holding a circular saw isn’t always as intuitive as you think and some don’t know that there are two different kinds: a sidewinder and worm drive saw. Sidewinders are typically designed for right-handed people and worm drive saws are for the left-handed. While you can use either type, you will need to learn how to hold and use each type properly. 

Tip #3: Never Use a Damaged Saw

Defective saws can cause a number of issues and hazards, so it is important to check the saw every time before use. Power tools that aren’t running properly can cause accidents even if you are highly skilled. Get the saw repaired if you notice anything out of the ordinary before you even plug it in. Never try to cut anything with a defective circular saw. If you notice unusual vibration when you turn the saw on, immediately turn it off and take it in to be looked at by a professional. 

Of all reported saw injuries, circular saws make up the largest group at 30 percent, so make sure to check blades, plug-ins, guards and ports before use. 

Tip #4: Only Use Sharp Blades

Dull blades can bind and cause kick back, which can ultimately make whatever material you are working on cut uneven, and the kick can cause injury if it’s bad enough. Using sharp, free of pitch blades will give you smooth, even cuts every time. Make sure to guide the saw to the cut point, but never force the saw hard.

Tip #5: Unplug When Not Using

To avoid any unnecessary accidents, make sure your saw is unplugged whenever it is not in use. This will help avoid many different injuries, especially if you have children around the area where you work. An unsuspecting person can accidentally switch it on and cause damage if it is not properly unplugged. 

Don’ts of Circular Saw Use

When handling, never:

  • Place your hand under the saw’s guard.
  • Operate a vibrating saw as this could be a sign it is broken.
  • Force the saw when you are cutting materials.
  • Hold or carry the saw with your finger on the trigger switch.
  • Use the saw without first making sure there are no materials obstructing the blade, like nails or screws. 

Safe and Reliable Tool Rental

At Elephant Construction Solutions, our quality equipment serves professionals and DIY builders alike with high-quality power tools and accessories that you’ll need to get your project or job done right. Located in the Rio Grande Valley, we offer many different options for rent, such as: circular saws, drills, and many other power tools, professional construction equipment, as well as other machinery, including air compressors, power generators, and even scaffolding. 

Reach out to Elephant Construction Solutions to get a free quote for any power tools or machinery you may need for your next job or project. Whether it’s as simple as a saw, as vital as scaffolding, or as small as a drill, we have the best in high quality products you are looking for.


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