Cordless Circular Saw – Buyers Guide

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Cordless Circular Saw Buyers Guide

There is nothing more tedious than spending ages measuring up the cut that you want, taking the time to clamp the piece of material to your work-surface, only to end up with a jagged, uneven cut that leaves the material unable to be used (and leaves you frustrated!). We understand your frustration – so have created this Buyer’s Guide with you in mind. Including all the information that you could need about circular saws (but paying particular attention to cordless circular saws), we will help you be ready to invest in the best cordless circular saw for you and even recommend some of our favourite models along the way!

Cordless circular saws really are the best tool to use if you are wanting to cut straight, neat lines in a variety of materials – in a fraction of the time! The battery pack will power a motor, which turns the blade at a high speed allowing you to push it along the material that you are working with and complete your cut. Simply release the trigger when you get to the end of the piece of material and your blade will stop, leaving you with a perfect, straight cut (in half the time). Circular saws can also be used on many different materials such as; sheet metals, timber and MDF – providing you have the right blade!

Only Got 5 Minutes?

Let’s be honest – the most important information that you need is what features to look for when purchasing your cordless circular saw. The last thing that you want is to buy a model that is completely unsuitable for the jobs that you are hoping to complete. There are some main features to consider. We have gone into detail on these below to help you make a purchase that is right for you.

Battery and Power

Gone are the days when all of your heavy-duty DIY tasks had to be completed in a shed or workshop, or with a snake of extension cables working their way into your garden! Many tools, including circular saws, now come with cordless options to massively increase the number of places that you can work and therefore the number of tasks that you can complete! They also offer added safety – as you are not having to worry about the trailing wire!

However, sadly they are far from perfect! Cordless models are never going to be as powerful as their corded counterparts – unless you have a considerable amount of money to invest in a professional model! But this doesn’t mean that they should be avoided, as there are ways to ensure that you can get the best from your cordless circular saw and still rely on it for all those important DIY jobs! Buying a higher voltage lithium-ion battery (which have longer battery life and also tend to charge faster) will help you to still be able to get the job done. Cordless circular saws tend to range from 12V to 60V. Be careful when purchasing though – many cordless circular saws actually don’t come with a battery! This will add to your outgoings when purchasing.

TOP TIP: Buy a second (or even third!) battery and have them charged up and ready to go. This way to can swap the battery and keep working while the recently flat battery recharges – and repeat!

Best Pick

Sale Ryobi R18CS-0 ONE+ 18 V Cordless Circular Saw, 165 mm (Body Only)

Best Budget

Sale Einhell TE-CS 18 Li Solo Power X-Change 18 V Naked Cordless Circular Saw - Red

Cutting Depth, Capacity and Bevel Cuts

The depth and capacity of the cut that you will be able to achieve with your cordless circular saw depend on the size of blade that it uses. Most cordless saws will use a slightly smaller blade than corded models (around 6.5”), however, if you are willing to pay extra there are models that will use a 7.5” blade. The bigger the blade, the deeper into the material the saw will be able to cut. Also, consider a model that offers a wide range of cutting depths to allow for more flexibility in the jobs that you are completing.

The depth of the cut varies between manufacturers – but obviously the bigger the depth the more jobs that you will be able to rely on your cordless circular saw for! This information can appear a little confusing when looking at models that are available, as they will usually mention the different angles at which the blade is at – with different depths for different angles! This is only relevant if you are looking to buy a model that can complete bevel cuts. Many saws will be able to cut deeper when they are at 0°, whereas others will cut deeper when at an angle.

NOTE: Bevel cuts are any cuts that are angled into the wood instead of being completely vertical. Some cordless circular saws will have the option of being angled to allow for these cuts to be completed. This angles can range up to around 55°.

Blade

That brings us onto the blade…choosing the correct blade (or the model with the best blade if looking at options where they are included) is incredibly important. This will affect the neatness of the cut that you can achieve, how easily the blade goes into the material that you are working with, and also the materials that you can cut through. Some blades will only be able to cut through wood materials, whereas others will also be able to cut through some metal sheets. Also, consider the number of teeth on the blade – the more teeth the more accurate the cut that you will see (they usually have around 24 teeth). It is important to note that to get the best cordless circular saw for you – it may be necessary to buy a circular saw that meets your needs in terms of power and ability, then buy your own blade and add this onto the saw.

TOP TIP: Be sure to make sure that your blade is sharp before use. Sharp blades will leave a neater finish and are much safer to use.

Speed

The speed of cordless circular saws is measured in revolutions per minute (RPM) – literally the number of times that the blade rotates in a minute. In simple terms, the faster the blade will turn, the easier the cut and the more control you will have over it. However, if you choose a model with less power or a lesser motor, but with high RPM, then you could find that the tool struggles to cope under some circumstances (such as working at a large depth or in strong material).

Weight

The weight of your cordless circular saw is important, as this will affect how long you can work with the tool before getting tired. A heavy circular saw will be more cumbersome and add to the time and effort that goes into all of your jobs!

Make sure to check on each individual product detail, as to whether the weight that they are stating includes the battery or not. Some of the battery packs that come with the cordless circular saws can be rather heavy, so you could be fooled into purchasing a “light” model that actually just has the advertised weight, not including the all-important battery! In general, weights range from 3.5kg to 6kg.

If you are still struggling to choose between different models, keep reading for some more important features to look out for when buying a cordless circular saw.

Additional Features to Look Out For

  • LED lights appear on some newer models to help you see exactly where you are going to cut and to provide information about battery life etc.
  • Laser guide – this helps to guide where the blade is going to cut.
  • Look for the material that the shoe (the base of your circular saw) is made out of. They range from being made out of plastic, steel or aluminium. Steel models will offer you more strength and usually be longer-lasting, but plastic and aluminium models are cheaper and lighter (usually).
  • Blade lock – Most cordless circular saws will come with this feature, but that doesn’t stop it from being a very important feature to check for! This locks the blade to stop it from moving when you are trying to change it.
  • Dust ports – These are less common in cordless models, but some do come with dust ports that allow you to attach a vacuum hose to remove dust and debris easily.
  • Plunge cut circular saws will only lower the blade when you press the trigger, meaning that you can start cutting partway through the material that you are working with instead of from the edge, as with other models
  • Speed control – this is a clever feature that will slow down or speed up your blade depending on the material that you are working with. This helps to ensure the most efficient and neatest cut, but also helps to avoid draining the precious battery life!
  • Warranty – Most cordless circular saws will come with a 2-year warranty, however, some offer slightly more or slightly less. The longer the warranty the better you will be protected, but this also suggests the manufacturer has more confidence in the tool that they are selling!
  • Handles – choose a model with moulded, rubber handles that will help to increase the amount of time that you can work for!

Should I be considering a corded circular saw instead?

Unfortunately, the only person that can answer this question is you – as it really depends on the jobs that you are hoping to complete with your circular saw. Many models of cordless circular saws are now almost as powerful (if not as powerful!) as corded models. As a general rule, they do come with a smaller blade – although arguably still big enough to complete most general DIY and carpentry jobs. They also have the benefit of being generally safer than corded models.

However, all of these benefits have to be evened out with some negatives – otherwise, there would be no market for the corded options! Cordless circular saws tend to be considerably more expensive than corded options, and you also have the issue of the battery life if you are planning on completing particularly large jobs.

Safety Advice

  • Look for models that have fans to keep the internal mechanisms of the cordless circular saw cool and high-quality braking systems that will stop the blade in an emergency. The better the braking system, the quicker you will be able to put your saw down and carry on with your work after you have completed the cut.
  • Make sure to wear goggles/glasses and a dust mask, as a considerable amount of dust and debris can be created when using a circular saw
  • Avoid loose clothing that could be dragged into the saw
  • Also, consider hearing protection
  • Ensure that any safety guards are working correctly and drop down automatically (if this is a feature that comes with your cordless circular saw)
  • Make sure to always unplug the saw before changing the blade

Best Budget Cordless Circular Saw

The Einhell TE-CS 18 Li Solo

Sale
Einhell TE-CS 18 Li Solo Power X-Change 18 V Naked Cordless Circular Saw - Red
14 Reviews
Einhell TE-CS 18 Li Solo Power X-Change 18 V Naked Cordless Circular Saw - Red
  • Suitable for the einhell power X-change battery system
  • Supplied without battery and charger (available separately)
  • Small, light and handy for comfortable operation
  • Designed for easy adjustment without tools
  • Easy changing of the saw blade thanks to the spindle lock

This lightweight cordless circular saw is quite impressive for its price range. It comes with a host of features that make your cutting experience memorable for all the right reasons. One of its most outstanding features is the fact that it allows for easy adjustment of both the cutting depth and tilt angle.

No tools are required for such adjustments. We also love that this cordless circular saw comes with an LED job light to illuminate the cutting area. This results in higher cutting accuracy even when you are working in places with low lighting. When you buy the Einhell TE-CS Li Solo, you also get a saw blade, a saw blade wrench, a parallel stop, and operating instructions.

The Einhell TE-CS 18 Li Solo

Benefits of the Einhell TE-CS Li Solo

  • Compatible with all Power X-Change batteries
  • Easy saw blade change
  • Comes with a dust extractor adaptor to keep the workplace clean

Disadvantages of the Einhell TE-CS Li Solo

  • Battery and charger are sold separately
  • Not as powerful as a corded circular saw

Manufacturers Specs

  • Weight: 2.32 kilograms
  • Measurements: 32 × 20 × 29 cm
  • Voltage: 18 volts
  • Saw blade size: Ø150 × Ø10 mm
  • Number of saw teeth: 24
  • No-load speed: 4,200 rpm
  • Maximum cutting depth at 90 degrees: 48 mm
  • Maximum cutting depth at 45 degrees: 32 mm

Gallery

Sale
Einhell TE-CS 18 Li Solo Power X-Change 18 V Naked Cordless Circular Saw - Red
Suitable for the einhell power X-change battery system; Supplied without battery and charger (available separately)
£69.42 −14% £59.50

Rating

If you are looking for an affordable cordless circular saw that is light, compact and easy to use, the Einhell TE-CS Li Solo is right up your alley.

———

Best Pick Cordless Circular Saw

The Ryobi R18CS-0

Sale
Ryobi R18CS-0 ONE+ 18 V Cordless Circular Saw, 165 mm (Body Only)
46 Reviews
Ryobi R18CS-0 ONE+ 18 V Cordless Circular Saw, 165 mm (Body Only)
  • Ideal for a range of sawing applications
  • Tool less depth and bevel adjustments make it quick at easy to set up the saw
  • Rotatable dust port helps keep the cut line clear
  • Impressive cut capacities: 52 mm at 90 degrees; 36 mm at 45 degrees

The Ryobi R18CS-0 is in the ONE+ collection of power tools that use the same battery system. As such, if you already have a ONE+ battery system, you won’t need to get a new one. This battery system can be used by over 50 Ryobi power tools and allows you to build a personal collection of tools without having multiple batteries and chargers hanging around.

This saves you the money you would have used to buy multiple chargers and batteries. In this way, you can get the most value out of your purchases. When you order the Ryobi R18CS-0, a single thin kerf blade is shipped with it. Extra blades, batteries and charges will have to be bought separately.

Ryobi R18CS-0

Benefits of the Ryobi R18CS-0

  • Easy tool-less bevel and cut depth adjustments
  • Rotatable dust port that keeps the workplace clean
  • Long battery life

Disadvantages of the Ryobi R18CS-0

  • Not as powerful as a corded circular saw
  • The vacuum cleaner connection doesn’t fit all cleaners

Manufacturers Specs

  • Weight: 2.8 kilograms
  • Measurements: 33.6 × 20.9 ×25 cm
  • Voltage: 18 volts
  • Blade diameter: 165 mm
  • Blade width: 1.6 mm
  • Number of blade teeth: 24
  • Bore size: 16 mm
  • Bevel capacity: 0 to 56 degrees
  • No-load speed: 4,500 rpm
  • Cutting depth at 90 degrees: 52 mm
  • Cutting depth at 45 degrees: 36 mm

Gallery

Sale
Ryobi R18CS-0 ONE+ 18 V Cordless Circular Saw, 165 mm (Body Only)
Ideal for a range of sawing applications; Tool less depth and bevel adjustments make it quick at easy to set up the saw
£99.99 −20% £80.00

Rating

While great for the average DIY enthusiast, this cordless circular saw is unsuitable for the professional. It can’t handle the daily cutting of tough materials. Professionals are better off with a more powerful saw.

———

Best of the Rest

The DeWalt DCS391N-XJ

Sale
DEWALT DCS391N-XJ XR 165 mm Circular Saw-Bare Unit, 9 W, 18 V, Yellow/Black
225 Reviews
DEWALT DCS391N-XJ XR 165 mm Circular Saw-Bare Unit, 9 W, 18 V, Yellow/Black
  • 24 carbide tipped teeth provides efficient and fast run time, delivering a smooth cut finish of up to 55mm in depth
  • Blade features an ultra thin kerf of 165mm designed for faster cutting
  • Keyless bevel angle and depth of cut can be adjusted with the easy to read scale
  • Intelligent trigger allowing total control over all applications
  • Lock off switch and electronic motor brake for additional control and work safety

If you are willing to spend more than a little cash on a high-end machine, the DeWalt DCS391N-XJ is just what you need. It has several features that make it stand out. Here are some of them.

  • Fan-cooled motor with replaceable brushes. This leads to reduced friction and increased battery life
  • Cast magnesium base for increased durability
  • The intelligent trigger for increased control
  • Ergonomic design with a rubber grip that increases user comfort
  • Electronic motor brake and lock-off switch for increased safety and control

The following items are shipped with this DeWalt cordless circular saw.

  • A carbide-tipped blade for cutting wood
  • A dust port to keep the workplace clean
  • A Hex key
DeWalt DCS391N-XJ

Benefits of the DeWalt DCS391N-XJ

  • Easy bevel angle and cut depth adjustments
  • Easy blade change
  • Long battery life

Disadvantages of the DeWalt DCS391N-XJ

  • Since it is a left-hand side blade, it will throw bits at you
  • Battery and charger are sold separately

Manufacturers Specs

  • Weight: 3.2 kilograms
  • Length: 360 mm
  • Height: 240 mm
  • Power output: 460 watts
  • Voltage: 18 volts
  • Bevel capacity: 0 to 50 degrees
  • Blade diameter: 165 mm
  • Bore size: 20 mm
  • Number of blade teeth: 24
  • No-load speed: 3,700 rpm
  • Maximum depth of cut at 90 degrees: 55 mm
  • Maximum depth of cut at 45 degrees: 42.1 mm

Gallery

Sale
DEWALT DCS391N-XJ XR 165 mm Circular Saw-Bare Unit, 9 W, 18 V, Yellow/Black
Blade features an ultra thin kerf of 165mm designed for faster cutting; Keyless bevel angle and depth of cut can be adjusted with the easy to read scale
£126.89 −18% £103.60

Rating

The DeWalt DCS391N-XJ is a powerful cordless circular saw that can be used by both professionals and DIY enthusiasts. If its price is within your budget, you should definitely get it.

The DeWalt DCS391N-XJ

While the Einhell TE-CS Li Solo and Ryobi R18CS-0 cut at a faster speed than the DeWalt DCS391N-XJ, they aren’t as powerful as the latter. This DeWalt cordless circular saw is powerful enough to cut through 55 mm of wood, something that the other saws in this review aren’t able to do.

Due to its great power, both professionals and DIY enthusiasts love it. It is one of those saws you can buy as a beginner and use all the way to professionalism. It also helps that it has a long battery life and comes with unique features that are noticeably missing from the other two cordless circular saws.

Although it costs a pretty penny, this DeWalt cordless circular saw is definitely worth the extra money. It is well equipped to handle whatever task you throw its way.

Sale
DEWALT DCS391N-XJ XR 165 mm Circular Saw-Bare Unit, 9 W, 18 V, Yellow/Black
225 Reviews
DEWALT DCS391N-XJ XR 165 mm Circular Saw-Bare Unit, 9 W, 18 V, Yellow/Black
  • 24 carbide tipped teeth provides efficient and fast run time, delivering a smooth cut finish of up to 55mm in depth
  • Blade features an ultra thin kerf of 165mm designed for faster cutting
  • Keyless bevel angle and depth of cut can be adjusted with the easy to read scale
  • Intelligent trigger allowing total control over all applications
  • Lock off switch and electronic motor brake for additional control and work safety
]

Frequently Asked Questions

How deep should the cutting depth be set to on my cordless circular saw?

It is important to have your cutting depth as shallow as possible (while still being able to cut through the material obviously). This helps to keep you as safe as possible when working with your tool. Work out the depth of your piece of material and then allow for another inch, at most, to protrude out of the bottom.

Does my cordless circular saw need oiling?

Many circular saws will require oiling occasionally with special gear oil that has been created with circular saws in mind. It is important to always use the correct oil as this will help to ensure your tool is long-lasting and works as well as possible! Oil is normally easy to add into your cordless circular saw – with a simple nut that has to be unscrewed.

Are there any smaller models of cordless circular saws?

Yes! Some manufacturers have now introduced “compact cordless circular saws” (which is a bit of a mouthful we know!!). These have considerably smaller blades (usually around 4-5”) which are perfect for much smaller jobs.

Last update on 2019-12-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About Mike Jones 136 Articles
I started doing DIY around the house and it soon developed into a hobby. I look for tools and products that are genuinely useful and get the job done. I enjoy writing product reviews, researching my buyers guides and putting tools through their paces. In my downtime, I like to run and I am a bit of a Netflix documentary geek.

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