How to Use a Circular Saw Safely and Prevent Accidents
A circular saw is called its name because of the fact that it uses a circular blade. This type of saw is a tool that most builders and carpenters don’t want their tool kits to be without. A circular saw is known to be a handy tool yet powerful enough to produce quality cuts since this is powered by electricity and not manually.
However, with great power comes great responsibility indeed because with such power produced by the circular saw, accidents are likely to occur and injuries are likely to be incurred if you are not careful in using this tool. Remember that a circular saw comes with a very sharp blade. Give that blade power and it will be an effective safety risk. So, if you are a carpenter, a builder, or someone who is into DIY projects, you can prevent accidents and avoid injuries with circular saws by knowing how to use it in the safest possible way.
Familiarize your Circular Saw Model
Circular saws come in different types and models and these types and models come with different instructions on how to use them. Getting familiar with the circular saw model you have allows you to be aware of how to properly use it and the safety measures to follow. This way, you can be safe even when using such powerful tool. You can do this step by reading your saw’s user manual.
Understand the Hazards of Using a Circular Saw
You can never truly embrace the need for safety precautions unless you understand the hazards of using a circular saw. With this, know that, if circular saws can cut through wood easily, it can cut through your hands or fingers a lot easier too. So, if you are not too careful, you could end up not only acquiring minor injuries but also major injuries. You could lose a hand, a foot, and even your life. Understanding these hazards can motivate you to not take your circular saw for granted.
Wear Necessary Safety Gears
When using a circular saw, do not neglect the need to wear safety gears. There are 5 major safety gears you should consider:
Thick Gloves. Using a circular saw involves handling sharp blades. When installing the blades or changing them; you always expose your hands to their sharpness. This increases the chances of getting cut. This is why it is a must to wear thick gloves to protect your hands when handling sharp blades.
Dust Mask and Glasses. Even though circular saws usually have a dust collecting system, few dusts can still escape and make way to your nostrils and hurt your eyes. This can not only affect your work but also your health. With this, wearing a dust mask and glasses can keep your eyes and respiratory health safe.
Ear Plugs. Using a circular saw can also hurt and damage your ears because of the loud noise it emits. Using ear plugs may not completely make the noise vanish but it can reduce the intensity of the noise to a level that your ears can tolerate.
Boots. When using a circular saw; there are times when kickbacks cannot be avoided, especially if you are new to this. Kickbacks can result to dropping the saw or dropping pieces of wood that can hurt your foot badly if you are not wearing boots.
On the other hand, you must also refrain from wearing clothing or accessories that have the possibility of getting caught in the saw and lead to accidents and injuries such as jewelry, clothes with ribbons and hanging pieces, etc. If you have long hair, you are also advised to tie it.
Know When and When Not to Use Sawhorses or Tables
Using sawhorses or saw tables can also put your safety at risk if you don’t know when it is appropriate to use them. When working on heavy wooden materials, it is not necessary to use a sawhorse or table. You will risk dropping heavy wood and make way for injuries. You can simply work on the material on the ground. When working on light materials like plywood, you need a sawhorse or table for support. Putting it on the ground may be unsafe and lead to poor cutting results.
Clear the Workplace
When using a circular saw and it gets in contact with other items on the table such as nails, wires, etc. it can cause accidents and injuries. With this, it is important to clear the workplace first before starting. Make sure no unnecessary items are scattered. It’s therefore necessary to have no children around when working as they can play around the workplace and incur injuries.
Set the Circular Saw Properly
This refers to preparing your saw for operations. This step involves setting the cutting depth and installing saw blades properly. The cutting depth should be at least 1/8” and the blades you install must be sharp and not dull. Most of all, if you are preparing your circular saw, make sure it is unplugged or else this could lead to accidental activation of the saw which could catch you off guard and lead to injuries.
Use Both Hands when Using a Circular Saw
It is always advised for operators to hold the saw firmly when using it and you can only do this by using both of your hands. Never ever apply a one-handed operation with circular saws or else you might not be able to support yourself when kickbacks occur. As a matter of fact, using both hands to hold the saw firmly is not only a safety precaution but also an accuracy assurance.
Position yourself at a Safe Distance from the Saw
While you need to hold the saw firmly, you also need to position your body at just the right distance away from the saw but just enough to hold it firmly. This is to ensure you are safe from kickbacks that could occur. Remember that when kickbacks occur, the saw usually turns to the operator and with the blade still running you are really in danger. This is why; keeping your body at the right distance can keep you safe while using your circular saw.