The blade is the heart of a miter saw, and if you’re not using a good blade or if it’s been worn down after much use, then the quality of your results from the saw will suffer massively.
That’s why saw blades should be changed fairly regularly.
This is true not only for miter saw blades, but also the blades on basically any type of powered saw.
In fact, one of the very first things you should do after buying a new miter saw is to change the blade.
Most saws come with stock blades which are OK, but very lack luster when compared to quality blades from reputable manufacturers. I would always recommend installing a quality version on your new saws.
Even with a good blade, it won’t last forever.
Eventually, you’ll have to change the blade out for a new one. You can tell when it’s time for a change when you start to see excessive chipping or burn marks on the material you’re cutting.
So with all that said, let’s get into how to actually change the blade on a miter saw.
One last tip: Make sure you’re using the right size of blade for your saw. Consult your owners manual to be certain of the right size.
Step 1: Remove the blade guard
Power off the miter saw before blade removal
First things first: Make sure the miter saw is powered off before doing any of this.
Disconnect the power cord, and maybe pull on the trigger a few times to be certain there’s no power getting to the saw.
Remove the saw blade guard
After that, it should be pretty easy to remove the blade guard.
These days, most of them pop off really easily with a quick release mechanism of some sort. At the very worst, you might have to loosen a few screws.
Check your owners manual if you can’t figure it out.
Step 2: Removing the blade
Lock the blade in place before removing it
Engage the saws spindle lock before trying to remove the blade – this will lock the blade in place, which allows you to loosen it’s connection and remove it.
After locking, it’s time to loosen the blade.
Loosen the bolts & remove saw blade
This differs slightly between miter saws, but it’s generally fairly straightforward – removing bolts and washers.
Again, check the manual if you get stuck.
Step 3: Install the new blade
Line up the blade and bolts
Firstly, make sure that the inside washer is still in place, then slide the blade on over it.
Then replace the other washers and bolts so they’re installed the same as before you took of the first blade.
Ensure blade teeth face downwards
It’s very important that you install the blade with the teeth facing downwards. This is how these saws are designed to be used, and improper installation can be very dangerous.
Make sure that the blade is secured tightly in place before attempting to test it.
Test the miter saw with new blade
After setup, you’ll probably want to make sure your saw is still cutting accurately – our article “how to setup a miter saw” shows how this can be tested quickly, and I suggested doing that after installing your new blade.
As always, be safe with this process. Check your owners manual if you’re unsure about something, and don’t take any chances – if you’re not confident that you can do this process correctly, then seek help from someone who is more experienced.