How to Change a Circular Saw Blade (Step-by-Step)

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The efficiency of a circular saw is unbeatable in the world of woodworking. It makes cutting through wood a seamless experience. However, it’s also important to keep it in top shape and ready for various projects by changing its blade now and then.

I remember when I was a novice, the thought of changing a circular saw blade seemed a bit daunting. But, trust me, it’s a lot easier than it sounds. I’ve mastered the process over the years, and I’m here to walk you through it. Let’s get that saw ready for your next project.

Replacing Your Circular Saw’s Blade: 6 Steps

Since not all circular saw units are the same, I highly recommend reviewing your saw’s manual before you change the blade. 

It is always best to read the manufacturer’s instructions first, then use this guide as support. 

circular saw blade

Tools and Materials You’ll Need

Safety Preparation

Before changing your circular saw blades, there are a few safety and handling tips you should know. 

Although replacing a circular saw blade does not require special skills and training, you should know how the saw operates and where the moveable parts are located.

Before you dive into this task, always prioritize safety. I never start without my protective gear, especially leather gloves. Trust me, these circular saw blades are never to be underestimated. Even when they seem dull, the teeth on these power tools can still give you a nasty cut. 

Step #1: Unplug Your Circular Saw

Check the power cord of the circular saw. Proceed to pull it from the electrical outlet or extension cord [1]

circular saw on wooden table

However, locate the battery pack if the circular saw is mobile and cordless. Then proceed to remove the battery from the tool. The main goal is to remove it from the power source. 

Step #2: Find the Wrench on Your Circular Saw

Most circular saws have a special wrench designed for the circular saw model. This tool is found on the saw and can be removed by pulling it out. 

Locate the blade wrench on the tool. However, if you have lost this, do not worry. Any standard wrench will suffice. 

Step #3: Disable the Spindle Lock Button

There is a spindle arbor lock button on every circular saw. It can be found on the saw’s shaft, and this button stops the blade from spinning when it is engaged. 

Once the blade lock button is not depressed, the blade and bolt will turn. This is when the user tries to remove the nut that holds the old saw blade in place. This will make it difficult to loosen the bolt since the button holds and locks the circular saw blade in place. 

Spindle Lock Button on Circular Saw

Disable the spindle to unscrew the bolt or put it back on. This can be done by pressing it and holding it down. Turn the wrench on the arbor nut to loosen it. Turn it in the same direction as the blade turns. 

Step #4: Release the Bolt That Keeps the Blade Attached

Use the circular saw wrench to loosen clockwise and remove the bolt holding the saw blade in place. Turn the wrench counterclockwise to remove the bolt completely. Once removed, set it aside. Add lubricating oil to ease its removal.

Step #5: Push the Blade Guard Away

The protective casing found on a circular saw is called a blade guard. The protective component of the circular saw rotates out of the way when you start to cut with the saw. However, the guard tends to rotate back over the blade once the saw is not used, a simple way to prevent any circular saw-related accident.   

When it’s time to change the blade, just press the saw’s blade guard out of the way with your hand. Then carefully lift the circular saw blade in preparation for the next steps. Be careful since it can still make cuts even when dull. 

Which Direction Should it Turn?

The direction should be turned counterclockwise. Do not worry. Look for an arrow found on the blade to guide you. 

turning the blade why holding down the Spindle Lock Button

What Should I Do if There’s No Blade Lock?

Older models do not have a lock but a hole in the blade. You can slide a screw in and lock the blade in place so you can remove the nut. 

Step #6: Attach the New Blade and Use Another Bolt

Remove the old blade and install the new one. Installing it is the reverse of the removal of the old. 

Push the lower blade guard out of the way and position or slide the new saw blade. Put the bold back on and tighten it with the same wrench. Hold the spindle lock button down to tighten the bolt. 

You’ve done it! You’ve replaced that old circular saw blade with a fresh one. Before you get cutting, make sure to switch on the power tool and give it a test run to ensure it’s all set and ready to go.

If you won’t be able to use your saw after changing the blade, make sure to store your circular saw properly for you and everyone’s safety. 


Since a circular saw is a staple in workshops and construction sites, its maintenance is always paramount. Replacing the old blade with a new one is fairly easy and can be done with minimal equipment. 

Now that you’ve got the right tools and steps on how to change the blade, you’ll be ready and confident when replacement time rolls around!

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Robert Johnson is a passionate furniture maker & carpenter, sought after for his knowledge on the craft.
You’ve probably seen his down-to-earth wisdom in USA Today, Bobvila, Family Handyman, and The Spruce, where he has shared commentary and guidance on various woodworking topics.

Robert is the brain behind Sawinery, where he aims to share tips, tricks, and a passion for all things carpentry.

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