Do you know that if the cordless circular saw has a long-lasting, powerful battery, it will surely be better than the corded circular saw? Well, this claim is entirely right, for the cord often gets in the way for comfortable working with the circular saw. Moreover, the cable adds weight to the tool and confines the circular saw in areas near an electrical outlet.
The cordless circular saw, in fairness, had improved a lot since its lithium-ion powered days when it was struggling to perform despite its 7-1/4-inch blade. At present, it now goes beyond the 15-amp corded models when it comes to performance, making it equal to or even better than its corded counterparts. This fact makes the cordless circular saw no longer a less appealing alternative for most woodworkers.
Factors to Consider When Buying a Battery-powered Cordless Circular Saw
Whether you are a hobbyist or a first-time buyer of a cordless circular saw, you need to be mindful of the succinct factors to consider when buying a cordless circular saw. Here are the key elements you need to consider when shopping around for the best cordless circular saw:
When purchasing a cordless circular saw, you will sometimes encounter 18V and 20V cordless circular saws. You may get confused with this difference and assume that the 20V ones are more powerful than the 18V ones. They are almost similar because when you fully charge the 18V circular saw, you will also get a 20V power for several minutes. The reason behind this is that the 18V has a 20V maximum power. So, you need not be confused with these two.
However, you will also come across the highest-power voltage 36V cordless circular saws, though they are not many. Of course, the 36V carries the most power among the given options, and if you are looking for the most powerful cordless circular saws, you should root out for this type of circular saws.
Rear-handle vs. Sidewinder
If you’re in the US, you will discover that this choice between sidewinder and rear-handle is more often associated with regions. If you are lodged on the West Coast, you will tend to favor the rear-handle, while if you’re residing on the East Coast, you will tend to go with the sidewinder. So, it’s more of a regional thing. Yet, there are subtle differences between the Sidewinder and Rear-Handle.
The rear-handle or worm drive saw, for example, still carries the original design of the first worm drive saw. Its motor sits behind its blade, which makes this tool narrow and long. This design is useful when framing a roof. Another thing is that the spiral gear or worm gear turns another gear at 90-degrees orientation. This other gear that turns the blade gives it a more enhanced torque. Hence, the worm drive saw is a powerful one and a good choice.
However, because the design of the worm drive saw has some limitations, engineers developed the sidewinder saw, or direct drive saw that features a motor adjacent to the blade. This design makes the saw broader and lighter while being shorter. If you are a tyro using a circular saw, you should use the sidewinder instead of the worm drive. Yet, your choice will still boil down to your preference.
The Blade on the Right or Left
If you are a pro woodworker, you will not make a fuss about whether the circular saw blade is situated on the left or right, for you will surely have a couple of cordless circular saws at hand. Yet, if you are new to woodworking, you can try both and figure out what is most convenient for you. If you are a right-hander, you may prefer a blade-left feature. Yet, it may not always be the case for most right-handers, for there are right-handed users who prefer the blade-right design.
If you are purchasing a circular saw, you might as well go for the one with a brushless motor. Of course, the brushless motor provides better runtime, performance, and even longer life. Brushless motors, as claimed by manufacturers, have better durability and performance. Moreover, the power tools with brushless motors are more power-efficiency compared to the other tools.
The brushless motor lets go of the old brushes and commutator. Its magnet locations, as well as the windings, are reversed. With this new setup, this tool can adjust accordingly to the task at hand. Hence, it is marketed as a smarter tool.
Another worth considering factor when buying a cordless circular saw is that of the electronic brake. This feature directs the blade to stop once you release the trigger quickly. Without this feature, the blade will rotate for 12 seconds after releasing the trigger, which could factor well when it comes to risk reduction.
It will help if you consider these other factors when buying a cordless circular saw like that of the rafter hook for hanging the saw, trigger safety design (push-in or push-down), dust port for better cleanup, rail compatibility for more accurate cut, LED light, cutline blower, and magnesium components. Check out for these additional factors if you genuinely want to zero in on the best cordless circular saw.
Best Battery-powered Cordless Circular Saws
I have mentioned above that the cordless circular saws have already improved a lot, and many contemporary models in the market could now compete with their cordless counterparts. To further facilitate your zeroing in on the best cordless circular saw, I have included here the five most recommended cordless models today:
The DEWALT DCS391P1 is a Lithium-Ion powered circular saw that comes with a very potent 5150 RPM motor. This motor can deliver excellent power and speed to enable this circular saw to efficiently perform the most challenging cuts. It also features excellent durability with its lightweight magnesium shoe that provides exceptional durability for long-term usage and accuracy.
Moreover, it comes with an optimized over-molded rubber for a more comfortable handle that delivers excellent control and balance. It also has 0 to 50-degree bevel capacity for engaging in more aggressive bevel cuts for various applications.
The DEWALT DCS391P1 also features a 6-1/2 carbide-tipped blade that lets its users cut twice as thick materials at a 90-degree angle and 45-degree angle. Moreover, it features a 20V MAX Lithium-Ion 5.0 AH battery. Plus, its depth of cut is 1-5/8-inch at a 45-degree angle and 1-5/8 at the 90-degree 2-1/8 inches. This circular saw is perfect if you are looking for a cordless yet powerful circular saw.
BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX 5-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular Saw
The BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX 5-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular Saw comes with a host of features that include bevel adjustment along with detents at both 90 and 45 degrees. With these features, you can make accurate angled cuts without flinching. It also features a 5.5-inch fast cutting blade along with a high torque motor. With this circular saw, you can easily make the necessary cuts to make your job easy and quick.
The BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX also comes with a tool-free depth of cut that lets you adjust the depth of cut quickly. It also allows for bevel adjustments with detents at 90 and 45 degrees. Moreover, it comes with a 20V MAX 4.0 AH Lithium-ion battery that has 2 times the capacity of LBXR2020.
You can also get 50 cuts per charge if you cut 2 x 4 treated lumber. Hence, it is easy to see how long-lasting its battery is. You don’t need to break the bank to own this type of circular saw, for it is very much affordable. Besides, it comes with a 2-year warranty.
SKIL PWRCore 20 Brushless 20V 6-1/2 Inch Circular Saw
This electric saw comes with everything you will need to get you started with woodworking. It features a brushless 20V 6-1/2 circular saw that comes with a PWRCore 20 Lithium Battery along with a PWRJump charger that is automatic. Moreover, its blade comes with 24-tooth and features an ultra-thin carbide-tipped blade. It can help you make accurate cuts, while its battery makes sure that you have a longer runtime.
The SKIL PWRCore 20 comes with a spindle lock feature for quickly securing blade changes. It also comes with the crucial electric brake feature for rapidly stopping the blade when you release its trigger. Furthermore, it comes with an integrated dust blower likewise for keeping the line of sight clear.
The good thing about this circular saw is that it comes with an automatic PWRJump Charger that lets you charge its battery in five minutes. You can also fully charge its battery in just 50 minutes. Plus, it has a battery charge status display.
The other advantages of buying this circular saw include the following: it offers longer runtime, quick charging, and longer battery life. Additionally, it comes with a patented cooling system that keeps its battery cool, allowing it to power the tool 25% longer.
SKIL 20V 6-1/2 Inch Cordless Circular Saw
With its powerful 20V Lithium battery, the SKIL Cordless Circular Saw can provide you with excellent cuts with ease without heating up. It does not heat up because it comes with a more enhanced temperature management system for keeping the battery cool.
It also comes with a remarkable adjustment feature that lets you quickly adjust its depth up to 2-1/8-inch at 90 degrees. You can also get a 0 to 50-degree angled cuts using this circular saw because of its quick and easy bevel adjustment feature.
Without a doubt, the SKIL Cordless Circular Saw is perfect for use in DIY projects. Besides, its thin-kerf carbide-tipped blade comes with 24 teeth that allow you to make seamless and precise cuts. It also comes with a line visor that enables you to make every cut perfectly straight.
Makita SH02R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Circular Saw
The Makita SH02R1 Cordless Circular Saw comes with a powerful motor that delivers 1,500 RPM, allowing you to make faster and precise cuts. It also features a 3-3/8-inch blade that can deliver up to 1-inch cutting depth for different cutting applications. Its cutting depth likewise is adjustable from 1 inch at a 90-degree angle and 5/8-inch at a 45-degree angle.
The Makita SH02R1 features a tilting base that lets you engage in bevel cuts from 0 to 45 degrees. It can easily cut various materials like plywood, pegboard, MDF, particleboard, drywall, melamine, etc.
The SH02R1 also comes with two 12V MAX CXT Lithium-ion batteries for more improved balance and better batteries. Moreover, its batteries include a LED charge level indicator onboard. It is lightweight at 3.5 pounds with a battery. However, its manufacturer only provides it with a 30-day limited warranty.
The usual complaints about the cordless circular saws include their lack of power and their batteries’ short life. However, the quality of cordless circular saws’ batteries has dramatically improved over time, and their motors have become more powerful. With more improved batteries and motors, the present-day circular saws can now level up with their cordless counterparts.
Moreover, they have become worthy alternatives to corded circular saws. They especially come in handy if you are working away from an electrical outlet or want more versatility when cutting materials. Since their batteries continue to improve, their power and use continue to get better likewise. Hence, you can surely expect better and more powerful cordless circular saws in the days to come.