August 2, 2021
The blade of the circular saw is in constant friction with the materials you cut. So there will surely come a time when your saw blade will become dull. Cutting materials, however, using a dull blade is like an uphill climb that will take its toll on your circular saw. It will cause the circular saw motor to work doubly hard. Besides, the dull blade will cause binding during cuts, making it difficult and risky for you to cut materials. Furthermore, the dull blade will cause burns in the wood. So, if you think that your saw blade is dull, you need to replace or resharpen it.
If you’re a newbie, you may be at a loss as to how to replace your old saw blade. It will indeed help if you check out the concise steps on how to replace the dull blade. Besides, it will be best to consult the manual of your circular saw when replacing the old saw blade. Replacing a dull circular saw blade, however, is not that difficult. Nevertheless, you will need a hex wrench for this purpose.
Proper Steps on Changing Circular Saw Blade
You will surely get the hang of changing circular saw blades as you frequently change your circular saw blades. Yet, if it is your first time changing saw blade, you might as well take note of the following steps on how to change circular saw blade:
Step 1: Make Sure You Unplug the Circular Saw or Remove Its Battery
When changing the circular saw blade, you should heed one caveat. You should unplug your saw from the electrical outlet. And if it is battery-powered, remove its battery. Disconnecting it from the power source will help avoid accidentally turning on the circular saw while changing the blade. Many injuries happened because of the accidental pressing of the start button. So you should not add to the statistics of injured persons due to circular saw.
Unplugging the circular saw is a protocol, and it is not just a recommendation when changing saw blades. So, make sure to unplug the circular saw when doing maintenance like changing the saw blade.
Step 2: Select Correct Replacement Blade
If you got a 10-inch circular saw, you should also get a 10-inch blade to replace the old blade. It is also not advisable to replace your dull 10-inch circular saw blade with a 7-1/4-inch circular saw blade. It will also help if you choose the right type of blade. Check out the blade name. The blade name indicates whether it is for concrete cutting or flooring blade. If you want to rip boards, you should choose a ripping blade, while if you’re going to cut plywood or do a crosscut, you can go for a combination blade.
Step 3: Loosen Up and Remove the Arbor Nut
Set the circular saw on a flat surface and slowly remove the blade guard to expose the blade. If your circular saw comes with a safety lock, you can engage it. You will find the shaft (axis) wherein the blade is set. You can lock the shaft to keep the arbor nut stable when loosening it.
Moreover, you should look for the disc’s locking button. Most circular saws feature a locking button to prevent accidental activation of the blade. If your circular saw doesn’t come with a safety lock, push the saw blade onto a wooden surface to stabilize it.
Step 4: Detach & Remove the Dull Blade
You can use the wrench to loosen the arbor nut. You need to turn the wrench in the same direction as the turning of the blade. Press on the locking button as you use the key to disengage the screw that affixes the blade. The blade, as mentioned above, will not rotate once you activate the locking button.
Use the key that comes with the kit of the circular saw to remove its arbor nut. Check the manual to know in which direction you would turn the key. Of course, the majority of keys turn counterclockwise.
Step 5: Replacing the Old Circular Saw Blade with a New Circular Saw Blade
Once you’ve removed the old blade, you can unwrap the new saw blade and slide it into the shaft. You only need to redo the steps on removing the saw blade, but you need to reverse the steps this time.
Take extra care when positioning the saw blade. Remember that all blades feature an arrow, indicative of which direction the blade rotates. So, follow this indicator when positioning the new circular saw blade.
Step 6: Reposition the Arbor Nut
After correctly positioning the blade, you need to reposition the arbor nut likewise. Tighten the arbor nut using your wrench. However, do not over-tighten the nut because the nut will tend to tighten itself when you begin to cut. Thus, you should not worry much about whether the nut will be loose.
Then, slide the ring and place the clamping screw again. Afterward, using the circular saw wrench, tighten the screw. Once you’ve set the blade well, replace the clamping again and the screw. Press the shaft’s lock button again and tighten the screw enough, but not too much.
Step 7: Do a Test Cut Using the New Saw Blade
Once you are sure that you’ve set the new blade right, you can then plug the circular saw into an electrical outlet or re-install its battery if it is battery-powered. Then, press the start button and make a test cut.
Check for any excessive vibrations before cutting. Ensure that everything is working well before making a test cut. Ensure also that you wear your safety gear when you make a test cut.
Additional Tips When Replacing Your Dull Circular Saw
Once you’ve followed the abovementioned steps, you can certainly replace a dull circular saw blade with a new one. It will also help if you know the following valuable tips when replacing an old circular saw blade:
When Should You Replace Your Circular Saw Blade?
There are reasons for changing the circular saw blade. One is if there are tell-tale signs indicative of the dullness of your circular saw blade. Such tell-tale signs include binding, burns on the wood, noisy motor, and inability to produce quality cuts. If these signs are present, you might consider replacing the circular saw blade.
A dull saw blade, of course, will find it hard to cut through the material. It exerts more effort, but the effort seems futile because you will find it hard to make a good cut.
Moreover, if the blade is dull, it will burn the wood because of the overheating of the blade. The overheating of the blade happens when there is more friction than usual.
Aside from replacing the saw blade when it is dull, you can also replace the saw blade when you need to make a different type of cut. For example, if the saw blade installed in the circular saw is for crosscutting, you can replace this saw blade with something suitable for ripping.
You can also replace the saw blade if you need to cut different materials. Remember that blades have indications in their names. For example, you’ll see a saw blade meant for cutting concrete and a saw blade meant for cutting wood.
So, if the saw blade installed in your circular saw is for cutting board, and you want to cut concrete, you can replace it with another saw blade. You need to do this when you only have one circular saw at hand to cut different types of materials.
I would suggest, however, that you buy two circular saws: one for your woodcutting and the other for concrete cutting. It will also help if you take note of the different types of blades. There are blades, for example, for finish cuts, rough cuts, crosscuts, and rip cuts. If you only have one circular saw, you need to have different blades for different types of cutting.
Is Your Circular Saw Only Dirty, But Not Dull?
You may get surprised that a dirty blade will perform as if it is dull. Yes, it will. So, it will be good to check if the saw blade is only dirty. If it is only dirty, you can simply clean it, and you’re good to go without replacing your saw blade with a new one. Cleaning your dirty blade will help in preventing corrosion and damage to the saw blade.
Wood pitch buildup can make your saw blade look dull. It affects the cuts, making it difficult for you to make quality and precise cuts. You can clean wood pitch using a bit cleaner. Moreover, you should clean your circular blade saw as a part of its maintenance regularly.
You will change the blade of your circular saw from time to time, depending on how you have used it. Besides, there might be some slight differences in the process of changing the saw blade. These variations depend on the type and brand of your circular saw. Generally, however, the blade changing procedures are the same for most circular saws.
The circular saw blade can still give you a nasty cut, even if it is dull. So, it will help to take extra precautions when replacing it. Moreover, it will help if you follow the simple safety tips on how to replace blades to ensure your safety. The worst thing you don’t want to happen is to lose a finger because of not follow the safety tips on how to replace a circular saw blade.
Jason is a 40-year-old woodworker, carpenter and author who have been involved in the woodworking and woodcraft industry with 17 years of experience. He is expertise in technical aspects, woodcraft and furniture building projects.