How to choose the right reciprocating saw

Power saws come in a variety of different configurations, each suited to certain kinds of cutting tasks. Table saws, handheld circular saws, and mitre saws-all feature round blades that spin rapidly for easy cutting through different types of material (wood, tile, plastic, sheet metal). Chain saws and pole saws are called for when outdoor cuts need to be made to trees, downed limbs, and so on. Jigsaws are perfect for cutting curved shapes and lines. But when it comes to a tool that can cut through nearly anything with the right blade, such as during demolition work, there’s simply no better alternative than the reciprocating saw.

How to choose the right reciprocating saw

Power saws come in a variety of different configurations, each suited to certain kinds of cutting tasks. Table saws, handheld circular saws, and mitre saws-all feature round blades that spin rapidly for easy cutting through different types of material (wood, tile, plastic, sheet metal). Chain saws and pole saws are called for when outdoor cuts need to be made to trees, downed limbs, and so on. Jigsaws are perfect for cutting curved shapes and lines. But when it comes to a tool that can cut through nearly anything with the right blade, such as during demolition work, there’s simply no better alternative than the reciprocating saw.

How do they work?

When you use a handsaw to cut something, you’re applying a push-and-pull force along with downward pressure to make the cut. A reciprocating power saw is achieving the same reciprocating motion but is powered by a motor to move the straight blade much more rapidly than could be achieved by hand, thereby making cutting much faster and easier. Outfitted with the right blade, a cordless reciprocating saw can slice through wood along with any embedded screws or nails or other metal fasteners and hardware, as well as metal and even steel pipes. With the blade orientation being in line with the handle like a handsaw, the reciprocating saw is especially well suited for cutting through any shape of material – cylindrical, flat, angled or anything in-between. These features are what make the reciprocating saw the perfect saw for demolition tasks.

Worx Advantage

Worx innovation: a combination reciprocating saw and jigsaw
Get the best of both worlds with the 20 V PowerShare Axis™ cordless reciprocating saw and jigsaw. Worx is always on the lookout for opportunities to get more functionality out each tool we make. With an innovative pivoting head design, the reciprocating saw converts easily to a jigsaw. In the perpendicular position, the Axis™ is perfect for precision radial cuts with a jigsaw blade. In the in-line position, it’s a compact reciprocating saw for all kinds of cuts in all kinds of material. It’s truly two tools in one.

Switch blades

When it’s time to switch saw blades, this doesn’t have to be something that takes up a lot of time. Look for brands and models offering tool-free blade changes to keep your projects moving right along.

Worx Advantage

Worx reciprocating saws feature tool-free blade changes
The Worx 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw and the Nitro 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw with brushless motor both feature a tool-free blade change system. Simply hold the switch near the cutting head to open the mechanism, take one blade out, insert another, and then release the switch to lock the blade in place has a tool-free blade-clamp for rapid changes. Both saws will accept standard universal shank reciprocating saw blades which makes finding replacement blades easy and convenient.

Switch blades

When it’s time to switch saw blades, this doesn’t have to be something that takes up a lot of time. Look for brands and models offering tool-free blade changes to keep your projects moving right along.

Worx Advantage

Worx reciprocating saws feature tool-free blade changes
The Worx 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw and the Nitro 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw with brushless motor both feature a tool-free blade change system. Simply hold the switch near the cutting head to open the mechanism, take one blade out, insert another, and then release the switch to lock the blade in place has a tool-free blade-clamp for rapid changes. Both saws will accept standard universal shank reciprocating saw blades which makes finding replacement blades easy and convenient.

Did You Know?

Cordless power tools that feature a brushless motor offer advantages over traditional electric motors. Brushless motors are well-known for offering higher efficiency, including 25% more power, 50% longer run-times, and an overall 10% longer life than regular electric motors.

What features do you need in a reciprocating saw?

Reciprocating saws can often all look about the same, so how do you choose? When evaluating different brands and models, look at the features and see which ones are important for you. For example, if you know you’ll be engaged in long sessions of demolition work, then you’d want to look at the weight of the tool and any ergonomic features that allow comfortable use over longer periods of time with less fatigue. Orbital or pendulum cutting technologies also make some models more efficient for faster cuts than others, and those that include brushless motors take efficient performance to a whole new level.

Worx Advantage

Worx reciprocating saw design features that matter
Weight matters when you need to hold a power tool for long periods of time, which is why a top priority for Worx tools is lightweight design. The 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw weighs in at just 1.6 kg while the 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw and jigsaw gives you two tools in one that only weighs 1.9 kg. The pro-grade Nitro 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw with brushless motor weighs only 2.5 kg and features GripZone technology, a micro-texture addition to the handle for a more comfortable grip and less fatigue.

What features do you need in a reciprocating saw?

Reciprocating saws can often all look about the same, so how do you choose? When evaluating different brands and models, look at the features and see which ones are important for you. For example, if you know you’ll be engaged in long sessions of demolition work, then you’d want to look at the weight of the tool and any ergonomic features that allow comfortable use over longer periods of time with less fatigue. Orbital or pendulum cutting technologies also make some models more efficient for faster cuts than others, and those that include brushless motors take efficient performance to a whole new level.

Worx Advantage

Worx reciprocating saw design features that matter
Weight matters when you need to hold a power tool for long periods of time, which is why a top priority for Worx tools is lightweight design. The 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw weighs in at just 1.6 kg while the 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw and jigsaw gives you two tools in one that only weighs 1.9 kg. The pro-grade Nitro 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw with brushless motor weighs only 2.5 kg and features GripZone technology, a micro-texture addition to the handle for a more comfortable grip and less fatigue.

A better battery platform for multiple tools

If you’ve ever been frustrated by a growing number of batteries and chargers in your power tool arsenal, take advantage of a brand that offers batteries that can be shared across multiple tools. This will not only make your life easier logistically but will also save you money by needing fewer batteries and chargers.

Worx Advantage

The Worx 20 V PowerShare battery platform
The Worx reciprocating saws featured in this buying guide are all powered by the exclusive 20 V PowerShare battery pack that can be shared across more than 70 other tools in the Worx PowerShare family. This innovative approach combines the power and portability you need while saving money on battery and charger purchases.

Just like swimming, it’s all about the stroke

As with most power tools and especially power saws, there are additional technical specifications that make a difference in terms of which brands and models get the job done quickly and efficiently. Blade speed as measured by SPM (strokes per minute) and the stroke length in millimeters are factors to consider. Higher speeds and longer stroke lengths mean faster and more powerful cutting capacity.

Worx Advantage

The Worx 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw and the Nitro 20 V PowerShare cordless reciprocating saw with brushless motor boast an impressive a blade speed of up to 3,000 SPM and stroke length of up to 3 centimetres.

Pro-tip: Use your shoe to make blades last longer

Reciprocating saws have what many users call a “shoe”, although others refer to it as a foot plate. The blade shoe provides stability against any fixed surface being cut. This shoe or foot plate is often adjustable through a pivoting mechanism which allows the user to also adjust the depth of the cut. Moving shoe also changes the section of the saw blade which is doing the cutting. By varying the cutting area, you can get longer cutting life from each saw blade.

Pro-tip: Use your shoe to make blades last longer

Reciprocating saws have what many users call a “shoe”, although others refer to it as a foot plate. The blade shoe provides stability against any fixed surface being cut. This shoe or foot plate is often adjustable through a pivoting mechanism which allows the user to also adjust the depth of the cut. Moving shoe also changes the section of the saw blade which is doing the cutting. By varying the cutting area, you can get longer cutting life from each saw blade.

Bundle up to get more tools for less money

Kits and combination bundles that offer multiple tools, accessories, carrying cases, and can give a leg up to anyone, but especially first-time tool buyers. You’ll get more for your money, which is always a good thing. Look for brands with a diverse offering of combination kits and bare tools supplied with no batteries or charger so you can get the right mix of tools and accessories that suit your needs with fewer purchases.

Iron Age

The Marimba brothers are blacksmiths, and as such they grow long beards and sport large, strong hands. Their world is made of iron and steel.

“Iron is just a scorching blob of matter when it’s out of the forge - then you have to work it and shape it to the tiniest detail to turn it into whatever item you’re working on, be it a gate, a window frame, an art piece. We usually start with a sketch, either our own or something provided by an architect or a designer. We then turn it into a detailed project. Crafting happens in the workshop, and then we ship stuff to worksites around the world and we take care of installation ourselves.”

Iron Age

The Marimba brothers are blacksmiths, and as such they grow long beards and sport large, strong hands. Their world is made of iron and steel.

“Iron is just a scorching blob of matter when it’s out of the forge - then you have to work it and shape it to the tiniest detail to turn it into whatever item you’re working on, be it a gate, a window frame, an art piece. We usually start with a sketch, either our own or something provided by an architect or a designer. We then turn it into a detailed project. Crafting happens in the workshop, and then we ship stuff to worksites around the world and we take care of installation ourselves.”

Same battery, expandable power

Worx PowerShare is a unique 20 V modular system that allows you to combine the same battery to multiply voltage to 40 V and even 80 V. PowerShare batteries are available in a choice of capacities so that you can choose what you need.

2-in-1 reciprocating and jigsaw

Axis cordless transformer saw 20V - tool only - WX550.9

2-in-1 reciprocating and jigsaw

Axis cordless transformer saw 20V - with battery and charger - WX550

Power equal to 700W corded, brushless motor

Brushless cordless reciprocating saw 20V - tool only - WX516.9

Power equal to 350W corded

Cordless reciprocating saw 20V - tool only - WX500.9

If you spend more time in your shed than your living room, you’re probably wondering what can we possibly teach you about tools that you don’t already know, right? Challenge accepted.