Have you ever bought something without knowing a lot about it, only to regret spending your hard-earned money in the first place? I definitely have. A few years ago, I made this mistake when buying a reciprocating saw. I didn’t know which features were important and what made the best reciprocating saws so good, so I bought one I thought would work…and it didn’t.
The blades ended up dulling quickly, it barely had any torque, and my hand would get sore after just a few minutes thanks to an uncomfortable handle. This lead me to do some in depth research and buy one of the best saws available (and junking the other one). I wanted to share the information I found with you so you don’t end up wasting your time and money like I did.
Table of Contents
- Top Choice
- Buyer’s Guide
- Best Overall Product
- Best Value Product
- Product Reviews
- 1. DEWALT DCS387B 20-volt MAX Compact Reciprocating Saw – 5 Stars All Around
- 2. BLACK+DECKER BDCR20B 20V Max Lithium Bare Reciprocating Saw – Safe And Powerful
- 3. DEWALT Reciprocating Saw, 10-Amp (DWE304) – A Corded Powerful Beast
- 4. DEWALT DCS367B 20V Max XR Brushless Compact Reciprocating Saw – Great For Tight Spaces
- 5. Ryobi P514 18V Cordless One+ Variable Speed Reciprocating Saw – Comfortable And Reduced Fatigue
Coming in at the top of the list, I had to go with the DCS387B 20V MAX COMPACT Reciprocating Saw. Not only is it cordless, but it packs the torque of a corded machine. There is an LED light to help you see in dimly lit areas.
With adjustable speeds and a pivoting shoe, you’ll be the one in control of this saw, not vice versa. A cutting depth of 1 ⅛ inch helps you cut up just about anything. This is a great saw for anyone who’s looking, whether you’re a beginner or a master craftsman.
Last update on 2019-08-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Here are a few things that are important to look out for when you’re shopping for the best reciprocating saw for you.
If you’re going with a cordless option, it’s important to make sure it has a powerful battery so that you’re not standing around waiting for it to charge. Batteries that are 18 volts or higher are a great place to start. If you have the option to get a lithium ion battery, do it! They charge faster and last longer between charges.
Stroke Speed And Length
Stroke speed is how fast your saw is moving. This is measured by SPM, or strokes per minute. Most reciprocating saws fall between 2,500 and 3,000 SPM. The higher the number, the faster it cuts. When it comes to the length, that’s how deep the saw will cut.
So, if you find yourself cutting 2x4s more than you cut plywood, you’d need a stroke length that’s higher. Higher stroke length also allows you to cut multiple pieces of material at once, saving you time.
You’ll read about keyless or tool-less blade changes. This means that you are able to switch out and change blades without needing any additional tools. It makes the process much easier and faster than if you did need to use tools. When blade changes are easier, you also have a lower risk of injuring yourself in the process.
Best Overall Product
The overall best reciprocating saw goes to the DCS387B 20V MAX COMPACT Reciprocating Saw. With hundreds of reviews and still having a 5 out of 5 star rating, you really can’t go wrong. It’s packed with features like the LED light, variable trigger controls and more. If you’ve never owned a saw before, this DEWALT is a great pick!
Best Value Product
The best value goes to the DCS367B by DEWALT. This product has a brushless motor which makes for a quiet machine that has less vibration than the competitors. There is an anti-slip handle that’s not only safe but comfortable. It’s meant to cut wood and metal and will quickly and easily cut through both.
Without further ado, let’s dive into the five best reciprocating saws available today.
Coming in at number one on the list is the DCS387B 20V MAX COMPACT Reciprocating Saw. It has a 1 ⅛-inch stroke length and provides a speed range of 0 to 2,900 SPM. There is an LED light to illuminate dimly lit spaces. This saw also has a blade clamp that is adjusted with a lever and can be put in a total of four positions.
- Four position adjustable blade clamp, so you can easily change blades
- Bright LED light allows you to get a better line of sight no matter where you are
- You can adjust the speed anywhere from 0 to 2,900 strokes per minute
This saw is lightweight and comfortable to hold for extended periods of time. It’s compact enough to fit in any tool bag, but it’s good to know that the battery is sold separately. Lastly, there is a pivoting shoe that give you more control while using.
What Others Are Saying
Customers love the fact that this saw is lightweight yet still packs quite a punch. You can get a lot of work done on one battery charge and the saw brings the power.
- LED light to illuminate what you’re cutting
- 1 ⅛-inch cutting depth for deeper cuts
- Pivoting shoe helps you control the saw
- Battery isn’t included
This is a great saw for beginners and experts. Whether you use it in a professional setting or are getting some DIY projects done at home, this saw will help get the job done with ease.
Coming in second is a BLACK+DECKER model. This saw is incredibly powerful and safe to use. You can adjust the speed from 0 to 3,000 SPM. There is an electric brake that gives you more control and keeps you safer while using the saw. This saw has a tool-free blade change feature that allows you to easily switch out the blades without needing extra tools.
- Adjustable speed settings puts you in control
- Tool-free blade changes are quick and easy
- Electric brake makes it easy to stop quickly if need be
This saw is lightweight and easy on the hands and arms to use. There is an adjustable pivoting shoe to make it even easier to use this reciprocating saw. If you’re looking for power and control in a saw, you’ll find it here.
What Others Are Saying
Customers love that it cuts through just about any material like butter saving you time and energy. Whether you’re cutting tree branches or PVC pipe, it cuts with ease and precision every time.
- Easy to control and handle
- Can make cuts really quickly (3,000 SPM)
- There is an electric brake to keep you safer
- The battery and charger are not included
If you’ll be cutting through several different types of material, this may be the saw for you. It packs a lot of power in its cordless body and can get jobs done quicker with the variable speed trigger.
DEWALT takes the third spot as well with their DWE304 model. This saw brings a lot of power with its 10-amp motor, and you can easily change the speed with a trigger that’s easily reachable. It can go up to 2,800 strokes per minute with a 1 ⅛-inch stroke depth. This is great to get deeper materials cut quickly.
- Corded saw with a powerful 10-amp motor
- Speed can be changed using the trigger
- It can cut deep, up to 1 ⅛ inches
You don’t have to worry about bringing extra tools either, as it has a keyless blade change that is controlled with a lever and can be adjusted into four different positions. This saw weighs only about eight pounds and has a convenient handle for easy control.
What Others Are Saying
One thing that customers love when it comes to this corded reciprocating saw is the amount of power it has. You can cut with ease through walls with nails, metal, and more thanks to its mighty 10-amp motor.
- Keyless blade changing saves you time and tools
- Relatively lightweight weighing in at eight pounds
- Blades can be in four different positions
- Corded saws require an outlet and sometimes an extension cord
Are you looking for a saw that has a lot of power to cut through just about anything? Corded saws have a lot more torque than cordless options, and this saw shows that. All that, and it’s lightweight.
The next saw on this list is the DCS367B, again by DEWALT (seeing a trend here!). This saw has a brushless motor making for less vibration, a quieter sound, and more control when using. There is an LED light, so you can use this any hour of the day. It has a max speed of 2,900 SPM and can cut as deep as 1 ⅛ inches.
- LED light illuminates your line of sight
- It can cut thick material, up to 1 ⅛ inches
- Anti-slip grip is comfortable and brings safety
- Brushless motor makes it quiet and stable for cutting
You’ll get a three-year warranty with this saw, which is great if you want to test it out. The pivoting shoe helps you create cuts with less wobble. This saw is used specifically for wood and metal cutting.
What Others Are Saying
Customers love that they can use this saw in tight spaces, and it still gets the job done with ease. They also seem to like the warranty included, whether a malfunction happens and they need a replacement or the machine isn’t what they wanted and they decide to return it.
- Keyless blade changing for quick blade changes
- Three-year limited warranty from DEWALT
- Handle is comfortable and has an anti-slip safety feature
- Battery is sold separately
- Only cuts wood and metal
This is a great saw for beginners. You’ll be able to easily change the blades on this with keyless blade clamp. The brushless motor and pivoting shoe gives the control a beginner would need. But keep in mind that it’s meant only for wood and metal.
Last, but definitely not least, is the Ryobi P514. The handle on this saw has rubber notches to keep your hand in place while using, and it also has an anti-vibration feature to keep your hand steady. There are springs in the handle to keep fatigue at bay. This saw can perform up to 3,100 strokes per minute which is the most on this list!
- Rubber notched handle to give you more control
- Anti-vibration that makes for steady cuts
- Springs reducing fatigue in hands and arms
- 3,100 strokes per minute making it the fastest saw here
Blades can be easily changed by pulling on a latch on the side, and three blades are already included when you buy this saw. Best of all, if you have other Ryobi tools, you’re able to use any of their batteries on this saw as well.
What Others Are Saying
Customers absolutely love how comfortable this saw is. It gives them more control, much less vibration, and the springs reducing fatigue allows people to use this saw for hours without feeling tired or sore.
- Ergonomic handle
- Fast stroke rate of 3,100 SPM
- Ryobi batteries are long lasting between charges
- Comes with three blades which saves you money
- Some users say the battery is hard to remove
This saw is one of the best reciprocating saws to use at work or home. It’s not only comfortable to hold, but with 3,100 SPM, you’re bound to get jobs done quickly. You’ll save money as it comes with three blades, and you can use any Ryobi battery you may already have with this saw!
Before you spend your cash, you may have a lot of questions. I get it. Below, I cover a few things you may be curious about when it comes to reciprocating saws.
What They Cut
You can cut through just about anything with a reciprocating saw. Wood, metal, PVC pipe, nails, and more don’t stand a chance against these powerful tools.
Straight Vs Curved Lines
A lot of people think that you can’t use reciprocating saws for cutting curved, intricate lines. That actually isn’t the case! Jigsaws may be built for that, but reciprocating saws do the job faster and with more force. You can cut straight or curved lines with this type of saw!
Projects They’re Best For
Reciprocating saws are best for demolition and remodeling jobs. You can always use it to trim tree branches or anything else, really, but they are built to help you easily get rough cut jobs done quickly.
Whether you’ve decided to go with my top pick, the DCS387B DEWALT model, because of the great features it has, or you’ve picked a different saw, you’re now much more educated on the best reciprocating saws. Things like LED lights or a comfortable handle can be preferences for some and must-have features for others.
Feel free to refer back to the buyer’s guide when you’re shopping, so you know what features to look out for. Hopefully your questions were answered, and you’re able to find a saw that works best for you and your future projects!