Reciprocating saws are the ultimate tool to cut through almost anything. They are most commonly used for demolishing and remodeling, but they won’t do the job right if you pick a model with substandard quality. There are a lot of features to look out for, but our experts have helped narrow down your choices for the best reciprocating saw with a detailed guide.
Reviews of the Best Reciprocating Saws
1. DEWALT 20V Max Reciprocating Saw
The Dewalt 20V Max Reciprocating Saw has a 4-position blade clamp that provides better control and more versatility. The 1-⅛ stroke length makes these battery powered reciprocating saws cut faster at variable speeds with the speed trigger.
From 0-3000 SPM, you can control how fast you go and how quickly you get the job done. The reciprocating saw also features a heavy duty pivoting shoe that is adjustable to prolong the lifespan of your blade and creates more depth control.
The 20V MAX system in this reciprocating saw is faster than other models and combines lithium-ion batteries with other innovative technologies.
2. BLACK+DECKER 20V Max Cordless Reciprocating Saw
Also running on the 20V max system, the Black+Decker 20V Max Reciprocating Saw gives you maximum control with the integrated variable speed trigger and the pivoting shoe. The reciprocating saw is incredibly lightweight at only a little above 5 pounds, which means less strain on your arm and longer working hours.
For safety, the BLACK+DECKER has an electric brake to improve control even more, and the 3000 SPM motor will cut through materials quickly.
The saw also has a tool-less blade change for quick switches for different materials. The lithium-ion battery pack is more efficient and powerful than other models due to the incorporation of the 20V max system as well.
3. WORX WX550L 20V AXIS 2-in-1 Reciprocating Saw and Jigsaw
The WORX WX550L is a 20 volt 2-in-1 reciprocating saw and jigsaw. The easy blade change from one type to another is done with a simple push of a button. What’s amazing about the WX550L is the orbital action cutting blade rather than the traditional back and forth. Our experts felt that the orbital action blade cut through materials faster with less fatigue.
The WX550L is compatible with both 20V and 40V tools of the same brand and the design is only a mere 4 pounds. The lightweight saw design is easy to grip and portable for moving to different job sites.
4. PORTER-CABLE 20V MAX Reciprocating Saw
Porter Cable 20V MAX reciprocating saws are superior and offer peak performance thanks to their efficiency and power. This reciprocating saw from Porter-Cable also features a high-performance drivetrain that gives a 1-inch stroke length and 0-3000 SPM.
The compact saw also has a tool-free blade change with a quick release button and is great for cutting jobs in cramped spaces. Like most other saws, the Porter Cable reciprocating saw has a variable speed adjustment trigger that will increase the control you have over cutting.
Get ready for longer hours on the job without fatigue thanks to the overmolded handle that is designed for comfort.
5. GALAX PRO Reciprocating Saw
Not having to wait long for the tool to charge earns the reciprocating saws from GALAX PRO a spot on our team’s list. Its 20 Ah battery charges in as little as an hour and has a battery indicator so you won’t ever be caught off guard.
A variable speed trigger is also present in these reciprocating saws, with your choice of 0-3000 strokes per minute. The speeds allow you to effortlessly cut through fiberglass to metal. The blade change can be implemented with a lever without requiring any tools.
This GALAX PRO Reciprocating Saw is lightweight and efficient with a comfortable grip to lessen strain.
6. SnapFresh Cordless Reciprocating Saw
The SnapFresh Cordless Reciprocating Saw offers a wider range of motion compared to corded reciprocating saws. It has a fast cutting speed and ultra-light body for efficient and quick cutting. The compact saw makes one-handed jobs easier and the battery can reach a full charge in just one hour.
There are different blades that come with the package. In addition, the quick switch is easy and safe with an auto-lock chuck on the clamp and also a tool-less blade switch design.
The powerful motor on this power tool has an adjustable cutting speed ranging from 0-3000 SPM.
7. Milwaukee 2722-20 Super Sawzall Reciprocating Saw
The Milwaukee 2722-20 Super Sawzall Reciprocating Saw rounds out our expert picks. It’s highly priced compared to other design options such as the one from Dewalt due to the integration of more features. For example, there is a rafter hook on the design that allows you to store the saw easily when you’re finished with work.
The saw also features an LED light that can light up the way to minimize cutting errors. The 1-¼ inch stroke length and variable speed trigger will give you longer strokes to get through more material each time.
You can also check other models from the same brand including our review of Milwaukee 2821-20.
Reciprocating Saws Buyer’s Guide
How do you classify a reciprocating saw as one that can be the best? The best reciprocating saws should be well priced, have everything you need, including a powerful motor and a long battery life. Our team has put together different features to consider when you’re looking for the right reciprocating saws.
Motor Power and Speed
How fast you can complete your work and how efficiently is dictated by the motor power and the speed of the reciprocating saw. Let’s talk about the speed of the blade first, which is referred to as the SPM, or strokes per minute. Most of the options our team introduced have 3000 SPM, which is what you should look for.
Some reciprocating saws like MAKITA JR3050T with variable speed triggers that can control the speed via trigger pressure. However, there are some that have a dial design that’s more hands-on. Our team recommends the speed trigger for control because it doesn’t require you to stop what you’re doing to change speeds.
The next consideration is motor power. The power of your saw greatly hinges on the motor power. A 12 amp  motor is basic and very common in professional grade tools. This will make sure you can cut through a variety of materials with minimal trouble. Our experts do not recommend going for saws that have any less than 5 amps for cordless options and 7 amps for a corded design.
A brushless motor is also more efficient and has a quieter operation compared to conventional motors.
Corded or Cordless Reciprocating Saw?
Speaking of corded and cordless reciprocating saws, it takes us to the next section where our team dives deep into which is a better fit for you.
Other than giving you more range of motion, a cordless reciprocating saw is also more portable. However, due to having a larger battery in some models to store more juice, a corded option can be heavier than a corded reciprocating saw.
A corded saw can usually generate more power than its cordless counterpart due to having access to a power source. If you have it plugged in, you could potentially go for long work hours without having to stop. A cordless model tends to have less power for the blades and can’t cut through as many tough materials.
So, which one would our team recommend? One of the best things about cordless saws is they are better for tighter spaces and those who move from site to site. If there are no electrical outlets in your work environment, then we also strongly recommend a cordless option.
If having access to power is not an issue at work, then a corded saw offers a whole lot of power to the blades and can cut through more materials from metal to plastic. They are better for heavy-duty professional projects but do be careful not to trip on the cord. You can always compensate for the shorter range with a longer cord as well.
Some reciprocating saws can come with a variety of different blades suited for different cutting jobs. Even if your model doesn’t, it should be able to accommodate blade switches.
There are blades better for wood, while others are more effective on fiberglass or metal. Consider what you cut at work to decide on the blades you need and how many to get.
Our experts will say that an orbital cutting blade is much more sought after than the traditional back and forth movement. An orbital cutting blade will not only move horizontally but also in a slightly elliptical shape that will help you slice through construction materials with even less force required.
Always choose high quality saw blades. They will last longer, be more effective and also won’t snag and stick as much during work time.
To ensure that the saw is comfortable to use even with a power 12 amp motor with a lot of vibration is to look at the handles. The handles should have a rubber or soft grip that conforms to your hand. This way, it will be easier to handle and take undue strain off of your wrists and elbows.
You can also find some saws with vibration control, that will also take strain off of your limbs. For extended use, this nifty feature is necessary to give you more balance and control as well.
How portable your power tool is depends on the weight. If you have a 11 amp or 12 amp motor, your saw will likely be heavier. It’s unfortunate that the weight will affect the convenience of the saw, so our experts suggest looking for ones that are as lightweight as possible. Of course, cordless options will also make your saw more portable, but as a rule of thumb, our team suggests only considering saws that are under 7 pounds.
The battery longevity also has a lot to do with the portability of your reciprocating saw. The best is to look for one that can work for at least an hour before charging is necessary. You will find ones that can operate between 20-60 minutes, so look for more powerful batteries of at least an 18 volt power rating.
Blades that stick can be very dangerous during a cut job, so you want to reduce snagging. The snagging can be reduced by a blade brake. A dust blower and an LED light will also come in handy to keep your workspace clean and to guide your blade.
It’s very dangerous to make a cut without seeing where you’re going, and in darker lighting conditions, and LED light can illuminate the way to reduce accidents.
Many reciprocating saws are sold as a tool alone, without any extra accessories, such as the Dewalt model. However, manufacturers will sometimes provide the option to purchase a package with everything you need such as extra blades, a battery or two, a battery charger and more. From what our experts gather, purchasing the entire package from the brand is a smarter way to go about it because you often end up spending less.
Not to mention, all the accessories included are specially made for your saw so you won’t have to worry about cutting capacity, compatibility and more.
Price and Warranty
This reciprocating power tool isn’t very costly compared to full-sized table saws, so the price shouldn’t set you back too much. However, our experts have endeavored to search for and include different saw options coming in at different prices to help you find the right tool for you that fits into your budget.
We have also included a pricier option, the Milwaukee Super Sawzall that is just over a couple hundred in case you want some extra features like a rafter hook, durable blade clamp and LED light. Spending more money doesn’t always get you a better tool, in the end you have to look at the individual features such as cutting efficiency, high amp motor, and high quality blades.
Be ready to spend a little more for extra features and more accessories. Having a dust blower for example can cost you a bit more but the end result is a shorter cleanup, a neater workspace, and of course, more visibility on the job.
The warranty is another very important aspect when picking your tool. For saws and tools that are geared towards heavy use, there is also a higher chance for wear and tear. Therefore, you want your investment to be protected for as long as possible. Most products come with a basic 1-year warranty, but if you can find ones that are longer than that such as the Dewalt 20V MAX that comes with a 3-year warranty, then that’s your best bet.
How to Use a Reciprocating Saw?
Now that you know how to pick the best reciprocating saw, the next question is how to use it for the best cut? No matter what blade you use, the material you decide to cut, and the motor amp, the operation is the same for reciprocating saws.
Start by turning the saw on and allow it to reach max SPM after a few seconds. When you hear the steady hum of the motor, then you are ready to start cutting. Utilize the variable speed trigger if you need to adjust the speed, but if not, just press the shoe against the material and start working the blade through.
If you have an orbital cutting blade, then this is when you will feel the difference between this tool and one that has a simple vertical or horizontal cutting design.
What is the best reciprocating saw to buy?
The best reciprocating saw to buy is the Dewalt 20V MAX Reciprocating Saw. This power tool features a 4-position clamp for the blade, a long stroke length, and adjustable speeds from 0-3000 SPM. The Dewalt saw also has an LED light to illuminate your workspace.
Who makes the best cordless reciprocating saw?
Worx makes the best cordless reciprocating saw. More specifically, the WX550L model. The WX550L is a 2-in-1 design that also features a jigsaw that can be switched out with the simple press of a button. The Worx WX550L is incredibly lightweight and easy to maneuver.
What is the best corded reciprocating saw?
The best corded reciprocating saw is the Dewalt corded model. It’s affordable with a 12 amp motor and a variable trigger for speed control for 2900 strokes per minute. The saw is excellent for heavy duty jobs and blade changes are easy, thanks to the keyless lever action design.
What is the difference between Sawzall and reciprocating saw?
A Sawzall is a reciprocating saw. Sawzall is the name for reciprocating saws from the Milwaukee brand, and has become a blanket term for all reciprocating saws due to its popularity. This concept is similar to people using the term Bandaid for bandages and Kleenex to describe all tissues.
Our Top Pick For a Reciprocating Saw: Dewalt 20V Max
Our team’s ultimate choice for the title of best reciprocating saw is the Dewalt 20V Max. This handy tool features a ton of capabilities and is cordless for convenience. The saw is incredibly lightweight and compact, making it the right choice for portability. The longer stroke length and faster speed on this model will allow users to get the job done in half the time.