The Best Circular Saws of 2022

Get the speed and accuracy your projects require with a reliable circular saw that truly makes the cut.

By Tom Scalisi | Updated May 20, 2022 4:35 PM and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

The Best Circular Saw Options

The words “versatile” and “tool” are combined so often these days that it’s hard to tell if it’s the truth or just an easy marketing ploy. But a quick tour of a professional construction site will certainly prove that a circular saw—a handheld electric saw that uses a round spinning blade to cut materials—is the real deal when it comes to versatility.

A good home workshop also warrants a reliable, powerful saw that can make short work of a variety of tasks, from breaking down a sheet of plywood to making quick, repetitive cuts on a stack of framing lumber. Circular saws, when set up correctly, can even cut grooves and dadoes.

Almost every power tool company sells a circular saw, so choosing the right power tools for a workshop can be challenging. Whether you’re a DIYer seeking a lightweight battery-powered option or a pro in the market for the most reliable, feature-loaded model, this guide will help shoppers get a handle on what to look for among the best circular saw options.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Makita 5007Mg 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw
  2. RUNNER-UP: DEWALT 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw with Electric Brake
  3. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: CRAFTSMAN 7-¼-Inch Circular Saw
  4. BEST SMALL: Makita XSS03Z 18V LXT Cordless 5-⅜-Inch Circular Saw
  5. BEST BATTERY-POWERED: DEWALT 6-½-Inch 20V MAX Circular Saw
  6. BEST WITH LASER: SKIL 15 Amp 7-¼ Inch Circular Saw
  7. BEST LIGHTWEIGHT: BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX 5-1/2 in. Cordless Circular Saw
  8. BEST HEAVY-DUTY: SKILSAW SPT70WM-01 15 Amp 10-¼” Circular Saw
  9. BEST FOR BEGINNERS: BOSCH CS10 7-¼-Inch 15 Amp Circular Saw
  10. BEST FOR PROS: SKILSAW SPT77WML-01 15-Amp 7-¼-Inch Circular Saw

The Best Circular Saw Options

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Circular Saw

Motor alignment, run speed, amperages, and blade types are all essential aspects of a circular saw, so here’s a quick primer to get started.

Corded vs. Battery-Powered

As with any type of saw, corded circular saws tie the user to the power source (i.e., an electric socket), whereas battery-operated models can go anywhere. On most professional job sites, cordless circular saws are shunned in favor of corded models—and there’s historical basis for this bias. When battery-powered circular saws hit the market, they were far inferior to a good corded option in both power and speed. They also went through battery life very quickly and would jam as soon as the blade felt any resistance.

Today’s battery-operated cordless circular saws, however, have much more power and far longer battery life. Much of this improvement is due to the adoption of brushless motors (the latest, most efficient technology that’s also maintenance-free) and lithium-ion batteries.

Sidewinder vs. Worm Drive

Despite what it might sound like, this comparison is not a professional wrestling bout! Sidewinder and worm drive refer to motor alignment and position on a circular saw. A sidewinder model’s motor is installed in line with the blade, enabling it to run at high speeds in a compact footprint.

A worm drive circular saw has a motor in the rear of the saw and uses a set of worm gears (so-called because of their spiraling worm shape) by the blade. Worm drive saws, which are usually longer, larger, and heavier than sidewinders, tend to reduce speed but increase torque. They also require oil to lubricate the gears, so users should check their oil level daily.

Bottom line: For speed, size, and ease of maintenance, a sidewinder model is the way to go; for power and torque, worm drive saws reign supreme.

Amperage and Speed

Amperage refers to the amount of electrical power a motor can withstand without its inner components failing. In the past, electric motors were weaker and not as capable, so amperage was an important specification to tout. Nearly all modern corded circular saws feature 15-amp motors.

A saw’s speed, however, can be a consideration since the faster the blade spins, the quicker it can cut through a material. But speeds tend to be relative because a 15-amp motor can spin a 7¼-inch blade faster than it can spin a 10¼-inch blade. Generally speaking, when it comes to 7¼-inch saws, speeds between 4,500 and 5,500 RPMs are common and should be adequate for fast, accurate results.

Keep in mind that blade speed has very little to do with the density of material a saw can cut. This is largely dependent on the blade type and quality.

Blade Size and Type

One obvious difference between circular saws is the size of their blades. Each uses a particular size blade, whether it be a small or massive tool. The range is pretty extensive, but the average person can get most framing and construction jobs done with a 7¼-inch model, though smaller saws might feature blades in the 5⅜-inch range. Large saws can be 10¼ inches or more.

Popular blade types include all-purpose, framing, finish, and plywood blades. The tooth count, or the number of teeth around a blade, is the determining factor to what projects a blade works best for. The lower the tooth count, the rougher the cut will be, making these blades suitable for framing or demolition. Higher-count blades should be used for cabinetmaking, plywood, and finish work.

Pro Tip: Circular saws cut on the “upswing,” meaning the cutting half of the blade (the part under the shoe) spins toward the front of the saw. This will inevitably cause tiny slivers of wood to “tear out” of the wood—particularly when cutting plywood—creating noticeably rough edges that detract from the quality of work. To minimize tear-out, lay a piece of painter’s tape over the cutline to hold these fibers in place. It’s also possible to cut wood face-side down to eliminate tear-out concerns on the face of the wood.

Shoe Material

The base plate that rides on the workpiece is known as a shoe, which will generally be made of one of three materials:

  • Steel, though once popular, is less popular today because, despite being inexpensive and sturdy, it’s also very heavy.
  • Aluminum is far lighter than steel but more expensive and not as tough.
  • Magnesium, which is about 30 percent of the weight-per-volume of aluminum, is the high-tech metal of choice for circular saw shoes. Magnesium is stronger than aluminum (and even steel in some applications) and easier to manufacture but considerably more expensive.

Ease of Adjustment

Certain materials, such as plywood and other sheet goods, require a shallow blade depth, while others (framing applications, 4×4 posts, etc.) demand the full depth a saw can muster. So for true versatility, a circular saw should allow the user to make quick and accurate depth adjustments.

Almost all models feature levers or knobs to adjust the blade angle, known as the “bevel.” Knobs tend to be more accurate at dialing in the perfect angle, although they’re a bit of a hassle to loosen and tighten when wearing work gloves.

The most important consideration when it comes to blade angle adjustment is an easily accessible knob. Some manufacturers put these knobs in the strangest of places—for instance, the rear of the saw between the handle and blade guard—but an angle-adjustment knob in front of the motor where it’s easy to access is the smartest design.


To combat the dangers inherent to circular saws, manufacturers build safety features into their machines. One helpful safety feature is an electric brake, which stops circular saw blades almost immediately after the user releases the trigger. Older models would allow the blade to come to a stop on its own, which could result in a spinning blade coming in contact with something unintended.

Built-in LED lights and spring-loaded blade guards also offer big boosts in safety. The work lights illuminate the workpiece, allowing the user to see the cutline as well as any debris or impending mistakes that they should avoid. The retractable guards cover the blade as soon as the blade is removed from the workpiece, helping to minimize dangers.

Safety is also the responsibility of the user, so be sure to use eye and ear protection when using a circular saw.

Additional Features

Some of the best circular saws offer additional features that make the job easier and faster. For instance, some models have dust collection ports and detachable collection bags to help minimize the amount of sawdust on the cutline. Others might come with extra batteries, depending on the kit.

Another helpful feature that manufacturers offer with their saws is a built-in rafter hook. These hooks swivel out of the saw, allowing the user to hang them from a rafter, ladder, sawhorse, or another sturdy ledge. Builders have been attaching them to their saws for years, and manufacturers are now catching on.

Our Picks

When it comes to choosing the best circular saw, there is obviously a lot to know. Luckily, shopping for one doesn’t have to be so confusing. The following list aims to simplify the process as much as possible, as it’s a collection of some of the best circular saws on the market. There’s something for everyone, from penny-pinchers to pros. Be sure to keep the top considerations in mind when comparing these saws to one another.

Best Overall

The Best Circular Saw Option: Makita 5007MG 7 ¼” Circular Saw

For all-around capability, performance, and features, the Makita 5007Mg 7¼-inch circular saw is worth a look. This powerful corded model uses a 15-amp motor and runs at speeds up to 5,800 RPMs, allowing it to tackle anything from construction to cabinetmaking. It also features magnesium components to lighten the weight, though it does still weigh over 10 pounds.

The 5007Mg has plenty of desirable built-in features. It features two built-in LED lights as well as a built-in dust blower, allowing users to keep their eyes on the cutline at all times. It also has a large cutting capacity, giving the 7¼-inch blade a 2½-inch cutting depth.

This circular saw’s beveling base has positive stops at 22½ and 45 degrees. The kit comes with a heavy-duty carrying case as well, protecting the investment during transport and storage. It comes with a 24-tooth blade, but users will likely find upgrading to a better blade well worth it.

Product Specs

  • Power source: Corded 15-amp motor
  • Speed: 5,800 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Magnesium components to keep it light
  • Powerful 15-amp motor produces 5,800 RPMs
  • Large depth of cut for 7¼-inch saw
  • Built-in LEDs and dust blower


  • Despite the magnesium, this model is heavier than some of its competitors

Get the Makita 7-¼-Inch circular saw on Amazon or at The Home Depot.


The Best Circular Saw Option: DEWALT 7-1 /4-Inch Circular Saw with Electric Brake

DeWalt is a leader in the power tool market, and this corded 7¼-inch circular saw is a prime example of why. This lightweight circular saw weighs just 8.8 pounds but still offers heavy-duty, high-speed cutting thanks to its 15-amp motor and a top speed of 5,200 RPMs. And to bring that 5,200-RPM spinning blade to a quick and safe stop, this saw features an electric brake.

This circular saw from DeWalt has a bevel capacity of up to 57 degrees, with positive stops at 45 and 22½ degrees. It also offers a deeper cutting depth than most of its competitors, at 2 9/16 inches. The base is aluminum for weight savings (the saw weighs less than 9 pounds) and features built-in wrench storage for quick and easy blade changes. The included 18T blade is only suitable for construction but will cut dense wood quickly.

Product Specs

  • Power Source: Corded 15-amp motor
  • Speed: 5,200 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Electric brake stops the blade after releasing the trigger
  • Powerful motor with do-all max speed
  • Aluminum base with built-in wrench storage


  • Included blade cuts quickly, but suitable for construction only

Get the DeWalt 7-¼-inch circular saw on Amazon or at The Home Depot.

Best Bang for the Buck

The Best Circular Saw Option: Craftsman 7 1/4" Circular Saw

Not everyone needs all of the features of a top-of-the-line cordless saw or the heavy-duty capability of a timber-framing model. For DIY projects that include an occasional small framing job or breaking down plywood sheets—and when saving money is a priority—the affordable Craftsman 7¼-Inch Circular Saw might be the right choice.

This 15-amp model runs at 5,500 RPMs and features a magnesium shoe for reduced weight. The shoe bevels up to 55 degrees, allowing users to customize the angle of their cuts. Also, this model features a built-in rafter hook that DIYers can use to hang it from a beam, ladder, or another ledge. Keep in mind that a lot of this saw is plastic, so it might not be so durable should it slip from that beam, ladder, or ledge.

Product Specs

  • Power source: Corded 15-amp motor
  • Amperage and speed: 5,500 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Affordable price point
  • Built-in rafter hook
  • Impressive speed and power


  • Contains a lot of plastic

Get the Craftsman 7-¼-Inch circular saw on Amazon or at Lowe’s.

Best Small

The Best Circular Saw Option: Makita XSS03Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless

For part-time DIYers or smaller-framed users, Makita’s XSS03Z 18V LXT cordless 5⅜-inch circular saw’s small size and minimal weight make it an attractive, portable option. This saw weighs just 6 pounds, allowing DIYers of any size and SKILl level to wield it.

Despite its minimal size and smaller blade, this cordless circular saw has a depth of cut of up to 2 inches, offering more than enough capacity for framing lumber. And, with its 3,600-RPM top speed, it’s capable of handling most projects, though the speed is lower than most corded models. The base bevels up to 50 degrees to allow users to make bevel cuts, and the built-in dust blower keeps the cutline clear so they can see the cutline.

Product Specs

  • Power source: 18V cordless battery
  • Speed: 3,600 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Lightweight at just 6 pounds
  • 2-inch depth of cut from a smaller blade
  • Built-in dust blower
  • Cordless portability


  • Speed is lower than most corded models

Get the Makita 5-⅜-Inch circular saw on Amazon or at The Home Depot.

Best Battery-Powered

The Best Circular Saw Option: DEWALT 6-½-Inch 20V Max Circular Saw

DeWalt was at the forefront of brushless technology and lithium-ion battery technology—and the company’s 20V 6½-inch circular saw is a prime example of what the brand’s tools can do. This cordless circular saw uses the same 20V battery that most of the DeWalt lineup now runs on, so those invested in the 20V lineup will have a host of compatible batteries. It also runs at a top speed of 5,150 RPMs, allowing it to keep up with high-end corded models.

Despite its power and capability, this saw weighs just over 7 pounds. It features a beveling base that adjusts between 0 and 50 degrees, while the rubber overmolded grip remains comfortable and reduces vibration. Keep in mind that this is a tool-only purchase; the saw doesn’t come with a battery or charger.

Product Specs

  • Power source: 20V cordless battery
  • Speed: 5,150 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Impressive maximum speed for cordless saw
  • Uses 20V DeWalt batteries
  • Lightweight at just 7 pounds


  • Tool-only purchase, battery sold separately

Get the DeWalt circular saw on Amazon or at The Home Depot.

Best with Laser

The Best Circular Saw Option: SKIL 5280-01 Circular Saw with Single Beam Laser

Getting the hang of a circular saw can be a bit of a challenge, but a circular saw with laser guidance can make the job that much easier. This SKIL circular saw features a single-beam laser that allows the user to maintain consistent passes on cutlines, taking some of the learning curve out of straight cuts.

Besides the laser beam, this circular saw also boasts a 5,300-RPM top speed from its 15-amp motor, offering plenty of power and capability. This saw’s base bevels up to 51 degrees, allowing the 7¼-inch blade to cut a variety of angles. And, to make this saw a bit safer, there is a safety lock in the handle that the user must depress before squeezing the trigger. Just keep in mind that for its affordable price, SKIL had to trade many metal components for plastic.

Product Specs

  • Power source: Corded 15-amp motor
  • Speed: 5,300 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Affordable price point
  • Onboard laser for guiding cuts
  • Safety lock in the handle to prevent accidents
  • Impressive speed and power


  • Many plastic components

Get the SKIL circular saw on Amazon or at Lowe’s.

Best Lightweight

The Best Circular Saw Option: BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX Cordless Circular Saw

Heavy saws can be intimidating and difficult for some DIYers to maneuver. This cordless circular saw from Black+Decker does away with those fears, weighing just 7½ pounds, and that includes the rechargeable battery.

This compact Black+Decker cordless circular saw is a basic yet capable model. The motor has a top speed of 3,700 RPMs, making it powerful enough for most projects. The base bevels up to 50 degrees and adjusts the height of the blade for cuts up to 2 inches deep. This saw also features a built-in safety in the handle to prevent accidental activations. The main complaint is that the battery that comes with this saw is only 1.5 Ah, meaning it won’t last as long as most DIYers would like.

Product Specs

  • Power source: 20V cordless battery
  • Speed: 3,700 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Lightweight at under 8 pounds
  • Safety switch in the handle to prevent accidents
  • Compact design


  • 1.5 Ah battery won’t last long

Get the Black+Decker circular saw on Amazon or at The Home Depot.

Best Heavy-Duty

The Best Corded Circular Saw Option: SKILSAW SPT70WM-01 10-¼” Worm Drive Circular Saw

SKIL is such a well-known saw maker, many people call all circular saws “skilsaws”—and believe it or not, the company’s SPT70WM is its midsize model at 10¼ inches. This worm-drive saw can cut both framing materials and sheet goods, and also handle thick timbers associated with post-and-beam and timber framing.

Deck builders and timber framers can appreciate the quick and accurate cuts the SPT70WM can make in one pass. It uses a 15-amp motor and runs at a top speed of 4,600 RPMs with plenty of torque. This corded, heavy-duty saw might be a bit much for some DIYers, but they won’t be able to deny its capability.

Product Specs

  • Power source: Corded 15-amp motor
  • Speed: 4,600 RPMs
  • Style: Worm drive


  • Plenty of cut capacity for lumber and thick timbers
  • Powerful, torquey sidewinder gears and motor
  • 4,600 RPMs from a 10¼-inch blade


  • Overkill for most DIYers

Get the SKILSAW 10-1/4″ circular saw on Amazon.

Best for Beginners

The Best Circular Saw Option: BOSCH CS10 15 Amp Circular Saw

First-time DIY tool shoppers need reliable, stand-alone tools to build the foundation of their kit. This corded circular saw from Bosch is just one of those models, not requiring the user to previously own any batteries while also being powerful enough for the user to grow into.

This saw doesn’t have a bunch of bells and whistles to confuse a first-time user. It features a powerful 15-amp motor that spins the 7¼-inch blade at a top speed of 4,400 RPMs. It also has a beveling base that adjusts up to 56 degrees. The wrench to change the blade stores on board this saw as well, allowing newer tool users to keep track of it for easy blade changes. And the built-in rafter hook makes hanging this saw from a ledge a convenient option.

Product Specs

  • Power source: Corded 15-amp motor
  • Speed: 4,400 RPMs
  • Style: Sidewinder


  • Plenty of speed without being a handful
  • On-board wrench storage for blade changes
  • Built-in rafter hook for safe storage during breaks


  • Stripped-down model without many bells and whistles

Get the Bosch circular saw on Amazon or at Lowe’s.

Best for Pros

The Best Circular Saw Option: SKILSAW SPT77WML-01 15-Amp 7-¼-Inch Circular Saw

This SKILSAW option is the go-to model on most construction sites nationwide. This worm-drive circular saw is useful for framing, carpentry, and even cutting sheet goods. It has a set of worm gears to increase the torque, making it a truly powerful saw.

This SKILSAW features a depth-of-cut guide on the side of the saw, allowing users to choose from among different sizes of plywood or framing lumber in seconds. It features an anti-snag lower guard that makes trimming small cuts easier and more accurate. The base adjusts to allow for bevel cuts up to 53 degrees. And being such a heavy-duty model, this worm-drive circular saw features plenty of magnesium parts to reduce its overall weight to less than 12 pounds, but it’s still a handful.

Product Specs

  • Power source: Corded 15-amp motor
  • Speed: 5,300 RPMs
  • Style: Worm drive


  • Heavy-duty worm gears for plenty of torque
  • 5,300 RPMs offers excellent speed, even through dense materials
  • Anti-snag lower guard


  • Heavy for casual DIYers

Get the SKILSAW 7-¼-inch circular saw on Amazon.

Our Verdict

For anyone looking for a quality saw that can do just about anything necessary, check out the Makita 7-¼-inch circular saw and enjoy its built-in features and high-speed motor. For those who prefer something a bit more affordable, the CRAFTSMAN 7-¼-inch circular saw offers plenty of speed and capability.

How We Chose the Best Circular Saw

Putting together a list of the best circular saws was more like fun than actual work. After all, if there’s one tool we’re not short on experience with, it’s circular saws. We drew upon all of our past experience with these tools to help us create this list.

First, we thought about all the must-have features that we can’t live without and compiled a large pool of tools that apply. Then, we narrowed these tools down by brands that we know and trust, as not all manufacturers offer the same degree of quality. Finally, we compared the prices of each model in order to ensure that the products we suggest offer plenty of value.

With all of this extensive product research performed, we were able to put together a list of the best circular saws.


Even with all that background on the best circular saws, some additional questions might be spinning through your head about these power tools. The following section aims to answer those queries. Be sure to check for an answer to your question below.

Q. What is a circular saw used for?

The overwhelmingly most common use for a circular saw is cutting framing lumber to length. However, it can be used to trim deck boards, cut plywood sheets into cabinet panels, and more.

Q. What kind of cuts can a circular saw make?

Circular saws can make straight cuts, cuts with beveled angles, and even a series of thin, shallow cuts known as dadoes or rabbets.

Q. What should I look for when buying a circular saw?

There is a combination of things to look for when buying a circular saw. If you already own a series of batteries, find one that matches your stash. Also, look for one with enough speed to get the job done that also fits your budget.

Q. What is the best circular saw for home use?

There are two saws worth recommending for home use. Both the Makita 7-¼-inch circular saw and the DeWalt 7-1/4-Inch circular saw are some of the best circular saws for a variety of projects, including those DIYers are most likely to tackle.

Q. How do you keep a circular saw straight?

The best way to keep a circular saw straight is to clamp a straight edge to the workpiece and run the base against it. Another idea is to place a small clamp on the front of the base to act as a guide.

Q. Why am I getting kickback on my circular saw?

Kickback can occur for a few reasons:

  1. Don’t start the saw with the blade against the workpiece. Allow the blade to get up to speed before pushing it through the workpiece.
  2. Semi-cut workpieces tend to droop, and this droop can cause sideways friction on the blade, pinching it in place. Support the workpiece until the cut is complete.