Circular saws are used to cut a variety of woods of varying thickness and wood types. They can be used to make clean, precision-cut straight lines in wood that is placed on a table designed for circular saw use. Safety is important when using any power tools, including circular saws. Whether you are using an attached circular table saw or a hand-held circular saw, knowing how to properly use the tool safely is crucial.
Before Using the Saw - Put on protective gear before turning the circular saw on. Always use safety goggles and wear a dust mask to keep from inhaling dust and debris. Consider using earplugs if the saw is extremely loud. Make sure all power cords and clothing are clear of the saw table and saw blade. Do a check of the saw to ensure the blade is sharp enough for the job. Inspect the retracting lower blade guard to make sure it is moving and working freely. Check the blade position and set the blade depth before plugging the saw in. Lock the blade depth; an ideal depth has the lowest saw tooth extending no farther than 0.3cm (1/8th inch) below the wood. Keep the saw blade and blade guard area of the saw clean and clear of debris and sawdust. Also make sure dust and debris is not covering the motor or vents. Buildup may jam the saw, slow the rotation down or knock it out of position. If you are a left-handed user, use extreme care and caution. Most circular saws are designed for right-hand use; left-handed users will need to be well aware of the saw's operation and handling.
While Using the Saw - Check that the retractable lower blade guard is working properly during use. It should return to its starting position before you ever lay the saw down. Always use two hands when operating the saw. One hand should be on the front knob handle, and the other should be on the trigger. Wait until the saw has reached full power before beginning to saw wood. The wood should be secured to a cutting table with clamps if needed. If you need to adjust the saw blade depth or wood position, always turn off and disconnect the saw from the power supply before changing depth or position.
Things to Avoid During Use - Keep your hands and clothing free and clear from the saw blade during use. When moving the saw around, never keep a hand on the trigger switch area. Disconnect the saw when moving it to another area. Do not try to force the saw when cutting, and do not twist or turn the saw during use. You should not try to force the blade guard into the open or closed position or reach under the blade guard. When using the saw to cut wood, check the wood before and during use to make sure nails, screws and other items stuck in the wood are not in the path of the saw blade. Never try to overreach to fully cut a piece of wood, and keep your balance when cutting wood. If the saw begins to shake or vibrate excessively or the blade does not seem to be moving at full speed, turn off the power and disconnect the saw before troubleshooting. When finishing a cut or lifting the saw out of a cut, do not release the trigger while the saw is still in the wood. Stopping the blade suddenly could cause the wood or saw to jump or create flying debris.