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If you use a miter saw, you know that you will need to change the blade, if not now, then some other time later. So, wouldn’t it be better if you know how to do it yourself rather than having to take it to a professional? Think of all the time and money you will save!
In this article, I will try to show you how to change a miter saw blade safely.
The 4 Steps to Change Blade on a Miter Saw
Before even coming near the miter saw, you should make sure that it is unplugged. You do not want to lose a limb for carelessly trying to change a miter saw’s blade!
That said, make sure that you unplug the desired electric cord. Many people, after suffering injuries, say that they have unplugged the wrong electrical cable. To avoid this rookie mistake, you can click on the trigger that starts the power tool to make sure that it does not start.
Do you know that screw that holds the blade guard in place? Loosen it, then move the blade guard up to get it out of your way.
Afterward, make sure that the blade itself is secure -yes, it can still harm you with no electricity.
To rest assured that the blade is secured and that no harm can reach you, press the spindle lock of the miter saw. This lock is usually a button that moves in and out, and it is generally found on the front or back of the miter saw’s housing. If the button is all the way down, then off you go to the next step.
If your saw does not have a blade locking button, this is no excuse. You can use a piece of wood to secure the blade. Put the blade onto the wood and then lower the blade till it reaches the wood. The wood will prevent the blade from spinning and causing any injuries when you remove the bolt.
Now, you can finally remove the blade. It is advisable that you wear work gloves before embarking on this task so that you can feel more safe and comfortable, and please do not touch the teeth of the blade (I mean, why would anyone do that?)
Now, let’s see how we can remove the blade.
Use an Allen Wrench and move it in a clockwise direction to remove the bolt that connects the blade to the saw. Keep doing this until the bolt gets loosened. After that, remove the outer washer with your hand, but do not ever touch the inner washer (do not say I did not warn you!). Now, you can remove the blade flange and the blade itself.
You can now replace the blade (yay!). However, before getting all excited about reading the following instructions, you should consult the manual that came with your miter saw, or contact the owners of it and follow their instructions. It is better to do this because these instructions slightly vary between brands, and you do not want to mess up the whole miter saw.
However, I will tell you how it usually goes.
You should make sure that there is no oil on the outer and inner washers that are going to be in touch with the blade by getting a washcloth and gently moving it upon them. This activity lubricates the saw and consequently enables it to work correctly.
Since the improper installation of the miter saw’s blade can result in horrendous injuries, you should make sure that the blade’s teeth are facing down when you are installing the blade. After having safely and successfully installed the blade, put the outer washer back on, and tighten it with your bare hands.
Regarding the bolt, add it back to its place by tightening it in a counterclockwise direction with an Allen Wrench.
To avoid any future injuries, make sure that the blade is tight and that the blade guard is reattached and lowered on the miter saw. How to do that? Easy, with a screwdriver.
Issues You May Encounter:
Faulty screws and bolts are one of the main problems that users face when changing the blade on a miter saw, why? Because in case your miter saw has not been used in a long time, its screws will have rust on them. The rust will make them hard to be managed or loosened. There is also the problem of not lubricating them for a long time, so they become extra stiff.
There is one magical solution to both these problems, lubrication! Any greasing product that you usually use with any of the other tools you have will do just fine with your miter saw.
Another issue is wobbling. Your machine should not be shaking when it is in use or else, you or your miter saw may get severely damaged.
- You should double-check the main bolt and see how tight it is placed in its place.
- Before doing the test-cut, make sure that everything (and I mean everything, literally) is done correctly and that all screws are tightened and nothing is loose.
Why Change the Blade of a Miter Saw?
If you have long used miter saws before, then this section is not for you. However, if you are a newbie, then carry on reading, because you would want to learn such stuff.
Blades need to be replaced for various reasons, among which are the following:
One of the main reasons for having to change your blade is because it has turned dull. A dull blade will not be able to make quality cuts. However, dirty blades can be mistaken for dull ones, and you definitely do not want to go through the whole process of changing the blade when you can just clean it.
So before changing the blade, make sure it is clean. The blade can get dirty with every cut you make. This is because the wood is collected on the miter saw’s blade. This collected wood will deteriorate the quality of your cut and, if not periodically cleaned, can cause corrosion.
How to Clean the Blade?
- Remove the blade from the miter saw
- Soak it in a blade cleaner of your choice
- Wash it with it
- Reinstall it
For more information and instructions on how to clean your blade, click here.
Working on Different Material:
There are different blades, and each one of them is designed for a specific material. You cannot use a blade that is made for cutting wood to cut metal, for example
Performing Different Cuts:
There are also different blades for different cuts. To put it simply, the number of teeth of each blade determines the type of cut it can perform. For example, the more teeth the blade has, the more it is suitable for cleaner and crisper cuts. So these are great for doing cuts that you care about their appearance.
On the other hand, blades with fewer teeth are suitable for doing cuts that you do not care how they will turn out to look like, like when you are cutting studs to build a house, for example.
Changing the blade of a miter saw is not a difficult task. You just need to follow the above instructions, refer to the instructions that the manufacturer of your miter saw provided you with and, most importantly, make sure that you are safe.
Do not be careless while handling miter saws.