If you want to use a reciprocating saw efficiently, then undoubtedly you have to understand the operating process of this saw. In fact, if you are comfortable with operating tools with your hands, then a reciprocating saw is a convenient tool for you. 

But I guess you don’t know how a reciprocating saw works. Right? If so, then this article is solely designed for you.

You know a reciprocating saw is a hand-operated tool and the efficiency of the task totally depends on you. You can use this tool for various kinds of tasks such as wood crafting, small home improvements, and so on. 

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To make you comfortable with this saw, in this article, I will try to cover all the details about how a reciprocating saw work. 

So, why late? Let’s see what’s new waiting for you.

Reciprocating Saw- What Is It? 

It’s a hand-operated tool that usually carries a thin blade for cutting numerous materials. The blades of the saw moved backward and forwards quickly to cut the materials accurately. That’s the reason the saw is called reciprocating. 

Battery-powered and corded both types of reciprocating saws are available in the market. So you can choose the required one easily. 

Parts And Features Of Reciprocating Saw

Reciprocating saws consist of different parts. Among them, the motor, speed control system, blade, battery, and lock-off button are notable. 

Now, let’s see how these parts work and help you to perform your task conveniently. 

The Motor

You will find a motor with the corded one. The most commonly used motors are 18 volts, 24 volts, and 35 volts. 

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Speed Control System

Most of the reciprocating saw models come with the only one-speed control system. Whereas a few reciprocating saw models are designed with the complete speed control system. 

This basically depends on the material you need to cut. The efficiency of the blade is also another major factor in this regard. You will need to press or release the speed control trigger to make sure the speed of the blade. 

The Blade

The blade is undoubtedly a crucial thing for a reciprocating saw. The length and strength of the blade mostly depend on the kinds of objects. 

For example, high-carbon and bi-metal blades are used for cutting woods, bolts, pipes, and rubber. And when you deal with aluminum objects, then carbide blades are the perfect one for you. 

Moreover, when you deal with more tough objects, then you have to settle a diamond grit blade. Usually, the length of the reciprocating saw blade is 6-12 inches. 

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However, you can use thicker blades for even more difficult projects. But thicker blades run slowly and make your project slower. That’s why people prefer thinner blades for reciprocating saws. 

The battery

You will find a battery when you use cordless saws. Nowadays, cordless saws are preferred more by people because these swans are easy to handle and make your task more convenient. 9 and 12 volts batteries are the best batteries for cordless saws. 

Lock-Off Button

Some models carry a lock-off button that helps you to control the speed of the saw. If you have a lock-off button, then you just need to adjust the speed and press the lock-off button to control the speed of the saws.

Reciprocating Saw- How It Works?  

Before going to the main fact, you need to manage some tools that will make your task more convenient and flawless. Let’s have a look at the required tools. 

Required tools: 

  • A reciprocating saw
  • Blades 
  • Power cable or battery
  • Goggles 
  • Hand gloves 

Now it’s time to focus on the working process of the reciprocating saw. Follow the steps outlined below to get an accurate outcome. 

Step #1: Place The Blade

You have to install the blade each time when you need to operate the saw. Because if you leave the blade attached with the saw, the blade may bend and sometimes it damages the saw’s internal parts. 

To place the blade, just adjust the lock button against the blade guide. Then place the blade in its position. In a few cases, you may need to use some other tools to lock the blade. 

But in the contemporary saws, you don’t need any additional tools to secure the blade. Once you place the blade, just make sure that the blade is properly locked.

Step #2: Adjust The Settings 

After placing the blade properly, now adjust the settings of the saw. The settings of the saw actually depend on the cutting material. The settings basically include the speed, depth, and the saw position.  

Before operating the saw, make sure that the saw is calibrated accurately. Otherwise, you can damage the saw as well as the material too. 

Step #3: Start Cutting The Material

Now, trigger the start button and start cutting the material slowly. And operate the saw slowly and carefully to get an accurate result. If you run the saw quickly, then there is a possibility to damage the material. Follow the lines to cut the materials flawlessly. 

Step #4: Remove The Blade

After cutting the material properly, remove the blade from the saw for safety purposes. Moreover, you have to change the blade if you need to cut different types of materials. Replace the blade if the blade becomes damaged or blunt. 

Now, that’s all about the working process of the reciprocating saw. 

Safety measures

  • Wear proper safety clothes when operating the saw. 
  • Hold the saw firmly in the time of operating it. 

Final Thoughts

To sum up, reciprocating saws are versatile tools suitable for different types of projects. These saws are handy tools and the efficiency of the saw is excellent. 

However, adequate safety measures must need to maintain when you operate a reciprocating saw. 

Hopefully, from this article, you’ve got a clear idea of how does a reciprocating saw work. 


As a civil engineer and roofer, I love to share the experience that I have gained through the last couple of years. In the roofing industry, practical experience is a very crucial fact that can help you a lot. Hence, I want to help you with my blog.

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