What Is a Reciprocating Saw Used for & how to safely use it

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  October 17, 2022
I love creating free content full of tips for my readers, you. I don't accept paid sponsorships, my opinion is my own, but if you find my recommendations helpful and you end up buying something you like through one of my links, I could earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more

Reciprocating saws are one of the popular tools used frequently by many carpenters and even regular people.

Many people buy a reciprocating saw for using it for various crafts in their daily life. But some of them may not understand how to use it.


If you happen to buy a reciprocating saw and want to know what is a reciprocating saw used for, then this article is for you.

Reciprocating Saw

These are handheld power saws that work using back-forth motions for cutting. This unique mechanism is known as reciprocating action.

The saws that follow this mechanism are usually called reciprocating saws, such as jigsaw, saber saw, rotatory reciprocating saw, scroll saw, etc.

These are found in both corded and cordless options. The corded one has a cable and requires an electric source for it to turn on. On the other hand, the cordless reciprocating saw runs with simple lithium-ion batteries.

How to Use a Reciprocating Saw

Before using your saw, the first thing you need to ensure is the safety materials. Always remember to use safety goggles and earplugs before you start working.

How to use a reciprocating saw

Turn on

Now, the first thing is to plug your reciprocating saw into an electric source if it’s a corded one. Insert batteries in if it is a cordless one.

Prepare the Cutting Surface

Then you should draw a line on the surface of the material you will cut for your convenience. Doing so will allow you to get a clean cut on the surface.

Then, hold the reciprocating saw firmly with your hands and put the blade’s edge against the material to gain a firm position with the saw.

Onto the Cutting

Finally, pull the trigger of the saw to increase its speed according to your needs, and firmly press the tip of the blade against the material. By doing so, you will be able to cut metal with a reciprocating saw, wood, or any piece of material smoothly.

Always remember to disconnect or turn off your reciprocating saw when you’re done with the project.

Uses of Reciprocating Saw

Reciprocating saws are generally common tools used by window fitters, construction workers, and even by emergency rescue services. However, many people also use reciprocating saw in their homes for different types of crafts. Some common uses for the reciprocating saw are given below:

  • Because of its compact design, you can cut materials both horizontally and vertically using a reciprocating saw. That’s why these are used to cut wooden and metallic surfaces generally.
  • Reciprocating saws are light and handheld but still have a lot of power. For this reason, it is one of the best tools for tree pruning and light trims on the branches and surfaces of a tree.
  • One of the advantageous factors of reciprocating saws is that you can change their blades depending on your project. For this reason, you can also do demolition and construction works using its long blade.


Reciprocating saws may have a unique mechanism, but it is effortless to use if you know what is a reciprocating saw used for, then you can deal with complex projects efficiently.

I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.