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The Best Circular Saw - 2020

Last updated on October 21, 2020

We looked at the top 8 Circular Saws and dug through the reviews from 26 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Circular Saws.

Best Circular Saw

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Our Picks For The Top Circular Saws

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  Best All-Purpose

Milwaukee M18 18-Volt Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Milwaukee

M18 18-Volt Cordless 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Take

Cordless, Brushless and PowerfulThis cordless saw can tackle even the tough jobs with accuracy and speed.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus . Along with user reviews from Home Depot.
  Best for Tough Jobs

RYOBI 18-Volt ONE+ Cordless 6-1/2-Inch Circular Saw

RYOBI

18-Volt ONE+ Cordless 6-1/2-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Take

Ergonomic, Interchangeable and CordlessWith its powerful motor and versatile bevel system, this saw will get the job done.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus Pro Tool Reviews, Tool Craze, Best Reviews Guide and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Home Depot.
Pros
" Compared to other models in this class and price point, I don’t think you’ll be able to find a better performing saw."
Cons
"However you wont get premium materials seen on more expensive saws such as aluminum or magnesium shoe or blade guards."
  Best for Long Days

Makita 5007Mg Magnesium 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Makita

5007Mg Magnesium 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Take

Corded, with Magnesium ComponentsCombining maneuverability and power, this lightweight tool reduces fatigue when you're working all day.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus Wood Working Toolkit, Tool Nerds, Heathy Handyman, Lumber Ace and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Large 7-1/4 inches carbide-tipped blade for working on larger projects. The blade is also very efficient at cutting material"
Cons
"Safety features could have been done better"
  Best for Travel

CRAFTSMAN CMES510 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

CRAFTSMAN

CMES510 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Take

Compact, Corded ToolThis saw is a solid choice for work in small spaces and includes a long-lasting carbide-tipped blade.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus Tools First, Sebring Design Build, Banging Toolbox and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Optimized for user comfort the CRAFTSMAN CMES510 is a dream to use while making aggressive cuts with the high performance 15 amp motor."
Cons
"It doesn’t come with a carry case or box."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
15

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the circular saws available to purchase.
8

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

26

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: Pro Tool Reviews, Power Tool Buzz, Best of Machinery, BestReviews, Tool Craze.

14,578

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 8 Circular Saws and also dug through the reviews from 26 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Circular Saws.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Milwaukee M18 18-Volt Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

User Summarized Score

9.6
322 user reviews

Our Take

The motor on this circular saw delivers superior vigor and run time. An LED light provides greater cutline visibility, while the magnesium upper and lower guards increase safety and durability.


The Best Bang For Your Buck

RYOBI 18-Volt ONE+ Cordless 6-1/2-Inch Circular Saw

Our Expert Score

9.5
4 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.0
1,515 user reviews

Our Take

This cordless circular saw is part of a large family of power tools that interchangeably use the same battery system. The ergonomic design includes a front pommel handle with overmold for safe and comfortable two-handed operation.

What other experts liked

Compared to other models in this class and price point, I don’t think you’ll be able to find a better performing saw.
- Pro Tool Reviews
The saw easily cuts stock wood and plywood while remaining perfectly balanced and comfortable to use.
- Tools In Action
So overall, I found this saw to have excellent power and as I was saying earlier, it has power similar to more expensive pro brand 6-1/2″ brushed cordless circular saws.
- Tool Craze

What other experts didn't like

The minor issues that I found with the blade guard are worth putting up with considering the cutting performance that I experienced.
- Pro Tool Reviews
However you wont get premium materials seen on more expensive saws such as aluminum or magnesium shoe or blade guards.
- Tool Craze

Overall Product Rankings

RYOBI 18-Volt ONE+ Cordless 6-1/2-Inch Circular Saw

2. RYOBI 18-Volt ONE+ Cordless 6-1/2-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Score: 9.4
Reviews Included: 6

Makita 5007Mg Magnesium 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

3. Makita 5007Mg Magnesium 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Score: 9.3
Reviews Included: 6

CRAFTSMAN CMES510 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

4. CRAFTSMAN CMES510 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Score: 9.2
Reviews Included: 6

SKIL 5280-01 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

5. SKIL 5280-01 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Overall Score: 8.9
Reviews Included: 7

Our Circular Saw Findings


Milwaukee M18 18-Volt Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

Best All-Purpose

What We Liked: The motor on this circular saw delivers superior vigor and run time. An LED light provides greater cutline visibility, while the magnesium upper and lower guards increase safety and durability.


RYOBI 18-Volt ONE+ Cordless 6-1/2-Inch Circular Saw

Best for Tough Jobs

What We Liked: This cordless circular saw is part of a large family of power tools that interchangeably use the same battery system. The ergonomic design includes a front pommel handle with overmold for safe and comfortable two-handed operation.


Makita 5007Mg Magnesium 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

What We Liked: This plug-in saw incorporates magnesium elements to deliver performance while remaining lightweight. At just 10.6 pounds, this saw still delivers 5,800 RPM to tackle tough tasks.


CRAFTSMAN CMES510 15-Amp 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw

What We Liked: This petite saw gets in tight corners and nooks without sacrificing performance. The 15-amp motor delivers 5,500 RPM, and the saw incorporates a rafter hook and 55-degree bevel capacity for added utility.

Our Circular Saw Buying Guide

Circular saws are one of the most popular power tools out there, and having one is an absolute must for any DIYer or craftsperson. Circular saws come in a number of styles and configurations. One of the first considerations when choosing a circular saw is whether you want a corded or cordless model.

Cordless models are generally smaller and provide the convenience of transporting the saw someplace else, or operating in spaces where extension cords are unavailable or unsafe. However, the batteries on cordless saws drain quickly when cutting tougher or thicker material. Corded saws are generally slightly larger and can provide more cutting power for longer periods of time.

The other major determining factor in circular saws is blade size. Along with corded or cordless designations, most circular saws are referred to by the specs of their cutting edges. The most common blade size is 7  1/4 inches. Blade size determines the cutting depth of the saw, or what thickness of material it’s capable of cutting through in one go. Saw manufacturers will often include straight-down cutting depth in a circular saw’s specifications, and sometimes also 45-degree cutting depth.

Circular saws also vary by type of motor. Sidewinder circular saws are the most common, in which the motor is aligned along the same axis as the blade. These versatile tools are suited to most applications. Worm drive saws have the motor positioned at a right angle to the blade and use gears to increase the torque transferred to the blade. These powerful devices are ideal for heavy-duty jobs, but they are also heavier.

Regardless of the type of saw you choose, you should verify that you know how to use it safely before getting started. A good way to accomplish this is by spending some time with the instruction manual before you do anything else.

Other considerations with circular saws include shoe material, guides and bevel abilities. The shoe is the foot plate that rests on the work surface, and it can be made from a variety of materials, including aluminum, steel and magnesium. When considering shoe materials, it’s important to balance durability and weight. Shoes can also incorporate guides for measuring and aligning cuts.

Finally, a saw’s bevel abilities refer to the angles at which it can cut. If you work on a number of complicated projects that might require more than a few standard angles, you should seek a circular saw with enhanced capabilities.

DWYM Fun Fact

The history of the circular saw is shrouded in some degree of mystery. The first patent filed for it, in 1777, may indicate that circular saw blades were already in common use by that time.

Since then, the circular saw has evolved into a compact, portable and versatile tool. Another type of saw with a circular blade is the table saw, which provides a flat surface and a stationary blade, with the work piece being maneuvered towards the saw.

 

The Circular Saw Tips and Advice

  • Consider whether your planned jobs will require angled or beveled cuts. Circular saws with bevel capabilities often have “stops” at specific angles to aid in making accurate bevel cuts.
  • The most common stops are 45 degrees and 22 1/2 degrees.
  • Blade material is a crucial factor in determining what the circular saw can cut and how quickly the blade will dull.
  • Blade types include steel, high-speed steel, carbide-tipped, tile-cutting and masonry blades.
  • Ergonomics are important when comparing circular saws. The various knobs, handles and other surfaces should be suited to the size of your hand and be comfortable to grip and operate.
  • Be sure to buy safety gear like goggles, work gloves and a dust mask when you order your circular saw. You should use these, along with long pants, long sleeves and steel-toed shoes, while you work with power tools.