You’re looking at your options, and your mind is going on about the best reciprocating saw, but you can’t seem to point your finger at a single one. Yeah, we all know the scenario.
It’s normal to be confused and torn between choices in today’s market with so many top-level competitors. That’s why we’re here with definitive info and insights from a user’s point of view.
To find the best option for you, you have to ask yourself, “Do I need the most powerful reciprocating saw? Or do I need a saw that fits my bill while providing the necessary features to get the job done? If you know the answer, then you’re already halfway there.
7 Best Reciprocating Saw Reviews
So, here we listed some of the best options for you available in the market.
Representing the well-known Bosch Company, this ultimate performer is a top-rated reciprocating saw in its class in terms of power to weight ratio. Why?
Well, firstly because it uses an Electronic Motor Protection for better performance and longer lifetime. That is achieved by saving the battery from overload, overheating, and deep discharge.
Next, their exclusive lockjaw blade holder design allows the operator to change the blade one-handedly. This allows a fast-changing of the blade even if it’s hot after use. You can attach the blades upside down, which makes it possible to do stiff floor cuts.
As for cutting ability, having a long 1-1/8 inch stroke removes more material. This powerful tool can cut almost anything tough with its toothed blade. The finer the tooth, the roughest cut it can perform. Depending on the requirement, different length blade is there to provide conclusive support.
A two-stage speed selector option is there on the top of the tool. You can easily access it and change even wearing gloves.
Furthermore, with the variable speed trigger, you can operate comfortably to achieve a precise cut with just the right amount of power. A soft grip on the handle makes it rigid and steady, reducing kickback.
Overall, the ergonomic design makes the holding of the tool secured. The whole package is designed to go anywhere and perform. Keep in mind that the foot at the front is not movable. That reduces the chance of working with a shorter length blade. But it can be tilted, fulfilling any angle cuts.
This one belongs to the ever-increasing 18V Makita power tool family. Upholding the manufacturer’s reputation, this brushless cordless reciprocating saw makes a strong claim in the playing field with other competitors. And it delivers.
Like many other reciprocating saws, it also has a two-stage stroke speed with large two-finger control. And the range of low and high speed is significant. It’s certainly a versatile choice for almost any kind of demolishing work.
Makita’s specially designed refined crank mechanism system makes a notable reduction of the blade deflection. Tool-less blade change is also available. With a 1-1/4 inch stroke, it is powerful enough to remove materials quickly.
Especially the electronically controlled motor system synchronizes itself with the working load, which provides just a sufficient amount of power varying with the load condition. In a nutshell, that saves power of the battery.
With all of these features, it also has Makita’s star protection computer control integrated into it. This control synchronizes between the tool and the battery to reduce overloading, overheating, and over-discharging.
Another feature to love among features of this tool is the well-placed LED light – pre-glow and afterglow of the LED light illuminate the work area. To ensure productivity and safety, the electric brake is there to stop the reciprocating blade in time.
In terms of ease of use, it scores high. A retractable tool hook makes it easy to store after use. The ergonomic design of this tool makes it rigid on the operator’s hands, and a soft rubberized grip reduces user fatigue.
The iconic black-yellow color of Dewalt is here! Being a Dewalt 20V family member, this monster is the best reciprocating saw on the market. You can use any 20V Dewalt battery with it, which has made a separate identity for itself.
Being a powerful saw, with a proper blade, it can go through any material with the smoothest cut possible. However, based on the mounting and the position of the job, you may be required to give extra pressure.
If any sole feature of this tool makes it distinguishable, then it is the 4 position blade clamp system. This feature alone increased the versatility of the product. The changing of the blade is keyless. Just by using the side lever, you can change the blade at a glance.
For adjusting speed, speed control is there. The more you squeeze, the more power the blade will have. Based on the necessity,a change in cutting speed will make the cutting experiences smoother. For safety, the trigger lock prevents any unwanted starts.
The whole grip is over-molded with rubber. But you have to deal with a good amount of vibration produced from it. You can feel fatigued in your fingers due to long use at a time, but your blade will live longer, thanks to the pivoting shoe.
It also allows you to control the depth of cut. One kickback among the positives– there is no LED light for helping you to guide the blade.
Talking about the 20V battery, no introduction is necessary. It is lighter with more run time and longer working life. Three LED fuel gauge will indicate how much juice is left. Virtually,it doesn’t have any self-discharge concern. The included charger is a quick one with the state of charging feature in it.
If you are looking for a synonym for a good reciprocating saw, Milwaukee’s Sawzall could be the one!! Milwaukee invented this saw back in 1951. Since then, they remain one of the pathfinders of the industry. Still, they produce some of the best reciprocating saws.
When Milwaukee is calling it ‘super,’ it’s not only a play of words. Having a 15 amp motor, it’s a device capable of providing the power you need. The higher the amp, the more juice it provides to the rotating system.
Constant power technology will provide continuous power, allowing you to cut through anything in front of you. A variable speed control trigger is associated with speed dial control. This easy to control system will help you to choose and play; however, it suits you.
Tool-less quick-lock blade change system with twist collar allows you to change the blade quickly, and the blades can be set upside down too. Being heavier than others is a step back for this tool.
But this is due to a counterbalanced mechanism introduced to provide low vibration and fatigue less cutting experience. And also, as it is a corded one, the accessibility will not be the same everywhere.
Then we have Milwaukee’s patented gear protection clutch that increases tool life by providing safety from sudden blade lock situations. A top-class industrial-grade overload protection system is integrated too.
Orbital action is one of the best features of this Herculean tool. You can adjust the amount of oscillation to remove more material. Just by a plastic liver, you can change the front shoe length for a precise depth of cut.
Another competitor from Dewalt, with its 20V MAX XR technology, this tool will offer you continuous support for a long time. With the brushless motor cutting, anything will not make any difference.
The 4 position clamp system allows it to cut in any direction. Flush cutting and quick cutting is just a step away. Keyless blade change will help you to do the cuts even quicker with the proper blade.
It is designed to be a compact one. Considering the weight, it will outclass other competitors. You can carry it and perform any stiff angle cuts. Even it will fit in between struts. Floor cuts with minimal clearance will not be a thing to consider.
LED light is mounted on the top of the tool. You will be able to cut in any light condition because of it. One minus point is that the shoe at the front is fixed in length. But it’s a pivoting one. So, there will be no issues with the depth of cut and rigidity.
As for the handling of the tool, an anti-slip comfort grip makes it steady on your hand. That being said, the lack of an anti-vibration mechanism will result in hand fatigue quickly. To counter this problem, you can save power and have a precise cut with the variable speed trigger in the control arm.
As you have to buy the battery separately, the whole package cost will increase. If you already own a Dewalt 20V battery, it will save you a chunk of money. This battery system will provide maximum initial battery voltage without any load.
Bosch power tools offer performance and reliability. Its compact design is intended for light works around you. To reach any tight spaces, this mini reciprocating saw is a handy tool. As a gift, the whole package contains Bosch’s well-reputed 12V battery and quick charger.
The ergonomic design of this tool will give you the freedom for single-handed cuts along with overhead use. Small grip and size allow it to access every tight corner of your working area.
Then, you have a LED light to make the working area illuminated in any situation. As a safety measure, a fast motor brake system is there. Furthermore, the front of the tool is rubber wrapped. That will save the tool from any contamination like water and dust.
For a longer tool life and run time, it has an electronic cell protection system. An overall protection system against overheating and overloading, along with under-voltage protection, makes it more capable of handling heavy jobs.
Bosch’s battery and charger pack has LED indicators. You will be able to know the charging status and power level while working. But it is not suited for long jobs that need hours to finish. You may need more than one battery for that or charge it over and over.
Overall, with the battery and compact bumper design for reducing vibration, this tool will take place at the top of its class considering the budget. This robust tool also comes with a proper carrying pack and multiple blades that make it ready to go without spending anything more.
Consider it as the best budget reciprocating saw with some quality features from BLACK+DECKER – a well-known power tool manufacturer. Despite being a ‘budget’ tool, this is a deal that you will remember because of the performance.
With a proper ergonomic design, the whole unit is lightweight. You will feel the difference while working with it. Variable speed trigger with the support of a 20V MAX battery from the manufacturer, any simple work will not be a matter of concern.
To prevent unwanted situations from the sudden starting of the tool, it has a lock-off feature. When the lock is activated, you can’t do any operation. And then, for more control, you can adjust the required speed up to 3000 SPM by squeezing on the trigger.
Need more safety? A thermal limit stop system will bring it to an instant stop to protect the internals of the tool. Once the battery is cooled, you can again jump into the working environment, which usually doesn’t take too long.
With the help of an adjustable pivoting shoe, you will have control over the blade’s path. For operation, the 7/8 inch stroke length is perfect for small tasks, which is the minimum length from the manufacturers.
The battery will provide a nominal power of 18V. It is a bare tool, meaning no battery and charger are included. However, a standard reciprocating blade is provided.
If you are already a member of the BLACK+DECKER 20V power tool family, this will just be the perfect one to make your hand equipped with.
What Is A Reciprocating Saw
What’s a reciprocating saw? As the name suggests, a reciprocating saw uses the mechanism of push and pull on the blade to get things done.
Usually, these saws are seen in the hands of professional workers in areas such as demolition or remodeling, or construction. The reciprocating back and forth motion are exactly perpendicular to the path of your cutting line.
It’s a handheld machine that works just like a manual saw. The automation design of this saw is taken from the same way we cut with manual saws; push the blade back and forth. It may seem to become easier with automation, which is not the case. Because the challenge now is to control the vibration created from the rocking motion of the motor.
You will see different designs in a reciprocating saw collection differences in power, speed, and features. There are powerful corded models for heavy demolition work, and then some options look like any small cordless drill.
This type of saw is also known as Hognose or recip saw. It has a jigsaw patterned blade attached to a motor. And this motor pushes and pulls the blade on the surface you’re working on as it cuts into it. It’s a great option saw for cutting woods and performing quick cuts.
Small Reciprocating Saw
The smallest reciprocating saws would be the one-handed cordless saws. They’re on demand among the plumbers and mechanical workers. It was brought into action when they needed smaller and more compact reciprocating saws.
You can use them with only one hand, which was thought to be impossible back in the days. They’re portable and run on a battery. That being said, they’re also the weakest saws in the product line. But that shouldn’t take away its need and practicality.
Weighing less than half of its predecessor, it can do wonders when it comes to remodeling. Demolition isn’t its forte, but you can carve a good design on any piece of metal or wood.
The average length of these saws is 12-14 inches, and the width is 2.5-3 inches. They need very little maintenance, and their No Load SPM ranges between 2,500-3,000.
Types of Reciprocating Saws
Above, we discussed the mechanism of reciprocating saws and their purpose. We also mentioned how there are differences among them in terms of power, features, and design. Here, we’ll go into a bit of detail on each of the types. In general, we can see there are 3 types of reciprocating saws in the market. And they are;
1.Cordless Reciprocating Saw
These saws are electrical reciprocating saws in nature, but they don’t have any cords attached to them. That means they draw their power from a charged battery.
Cordless reciprocating saws aren’t all that different from corded ones. The main difference is in the power constraint. You can’t use the cordless saws in big and tough jobs like demolition or construction. They are mostly good for carving wood, plastic, metal, etc.
The benefit of having a cordless saw is the portability and flexibility it brings, thanks to the elimination of cord limitation.
And cordless saws can again come in two types depending on their handling.
Double HandedThese are your go-to saws when it comes to cordless options. These were the only options until the ones below came out. As the name says, you have to use both hands to work with it.
These are the new cordless options that you can use with only one hand. They were brought into the market for homeowners and amateur workers who need small jobs done but don’t want to handle big saws. And as days go by, more compact and smaller reciprocating saws are coming in the future.
2.Corded Reciprocating Saw
These hand-held reciprocating saws are also electrically powered, but they have more juice to deliver compared to their cordless cousins. They draw power directly from an electrical circuit through the cord, and that’s why they are more capable of doing jobs like demolition.
Along with power, they’re bigger as well. Of course, it takes a toll on the worker’s hands, as you can assume. They are the best reciprocating saws if you talk about overall features and capability.
These saws might not be portable, but they can do the job of a couple of cordless saws just because they can deliver more power. Then again, they also cost more.
3.Pneumatic Reciprocating Saw
These saws are completely different in terms of their power source. It gets its power from compressed air cylinders that use the pressure of air to run the motor and blade. You can call these saws Cordless, too, as they don’t need electrical cords,F to begin with.
In terms of ability, they are not as powerful as corded electrical reciprocating saws. But they can do remodeling jobs and light construction jobs quite easily.
Things to Consider Before Buying
You can’t go into the market blind, not knowing what you need. The reciprocating saw reviews on the net might have left you perplexed because different people are saying different things, right? Well, to make sense of it all, here’s a concise buying guide in a sea of wrong info.
You know at are and their types. But what makes a good saw is its features regardless of type. Look for the features below in your saw.
The usual movement of reciprocating saw blades is back and forth only. But in orbital action, it moves in a both up-down and back-forth direction, making it more functional and efficient. It increases cutting power significantly; whenever you face a tough spot, orbital action will help you out.
Range of Speeds
One of the most important factors of a saw is its range of available speeds. The highest and lowest limit will let you know if it can do your job. The more options it has for adjusting speeds, the better it will be at performing jobs on pieces with different densities and strengths.
This part of the tool can control the angle and depth of your cut. Even if the shoe is locked in place, if it can be pivoted around, it’ll be enough to do most jobs. With a completely adjustable shoe, you’ll have more freedom to have versatile cuts.
Ease of Use
Can it be used one-handed if the need arises? That’s a good point if you’re working with remodeling or doing light construction on drywall. If you’re after demolition, then the ease of use isn’t that important because demolition jobs tend to be hard, and they need bigger saws.
Corded or cordless? That’s another issue you need to sort out as only cordless ones are portable. Both battery-powered and pneumatic saws fall in the cordless category.
Longer strokes finish the job quicker than shorter strokes. Then again, shorter strokes are desirable for plunge cuts where you have to make holes, to begin with.
Most reciprocating saws have a stroke length that ranges from ½ inch to 1-1/4 inches. Pick whichever is the best for your job.
A better option would be to get a saw that has an adjustable stroke length –one saw to cut them all.
The user will maintain external safety, of course, but the tool itself needs certain mechanisms in place to stop it from misbehaving midway through the job. To achieve it, it needs auto-stop and prevention of sudden start-up of the motor. Many manufacturers provide this feature in different names.
How the tool feels in your hand is either a deal-breaker or a maker. A comfortable rubber grip combined with a well-balanced body is a must if you want a good experience and not leave your hand sore after a cutting session.
Experiencing fatigue in hand while operating a saw is the worst thing ever. It destroys the line of action and makes it hard to keep the saw in place. Vibration can’t be stopped, but the best saws are those with good control over the produced vibration.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a reciprocating saw used for?
A reciprocating saw isn’t a hacksaw or a chainsaw. It gets the name from its back and forth stroke mechanism. Professionals and amateurs use it to mainly remodel or demolish things that are made of wood, metal, or PVC.
How do you use a reciprocating saw?
A reciprocating saw is used with two hands. The trick is to draw the design or lines on whichever you’re going to cut into. Then when you’re cutting into the piece, hold the saw blade tightly with both of your hands to withstand the vibration. Let the blade cut, and you just need to guide its path.
How can I shorten a reciprocating saw blade?
There are a few methods to do it. You can use your vice to hold the blade and use a hammer to break off the unwanted piece. Another way would be to use pliers to grab the blade. The part you want to keep should be inside the pliers and then wiggle the extra bits; they should snap off easily.
Is a reciprocating saw safe?
When it comes to cutting machines, they are as safe as the user wants them to be. If you’re working with steady hands and following a correct design, you shouldn’t face any danger.
What is the best reciprocating saw for professional work?
Dewalt, Bosch, and Makita have the best offerings when it comes to reciprocating saws. You can take a look at products like Dewalt DCS380B, Makita XRJ05T, or Bosch Bare-tool CRS180B.
Now, we hope you read everything we had to say about the recommendations and especially our buying guide. By now, you should know how to recognize the best reciprocating saw that fits your bill and your purpose.
No need to go overboard with your spending, whether you’re an amateur or a professional. Always go for value and class. You won’t go wrong with the 7 options we reviewed in this article.