The Best Reciprocating Saw for Heavy-Duty Cutting Work

Reciprocating saws are also called saber saws, or recip saws, or Sawzall. They are ideal for when you have demolition work in your workshop, yard or simply have a simple DIY task that needs cutting.

With this tool, you can cut through almost any material, including metal and PVC pipes. So, if you are dismembering furniture, you don't need to worry about nails joining the wood if you use this saw.

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When buying, you can choose the best tool depending on where your work is, how often you intend to use it, and what materials you will be cutting most. The following are 5 of the best reciprocating saws in the market today, discussed in detail to help you figure out which one you need.


1. DEWALT DWE305 Corded Reciprocating Saw

DEWALT Reciprocating Saw, 12 Amp, 2,900 RPM, 4-Position Blade Clamp, Variable Speed Trigger, Corded...
  • Powerful 12 amp motor of the reciprocating saw is designed for heavy-duty applications
  • 4-position blade clamp allows for flush cutting and increased versatility
  • Keyless, lever-action blade clamp for quick and easy blade changes
  • 0-2,900 SPM and 1-1/8-inch stroke length for fast and efficient cutting
  • Variable speed trigger allows user to instantly control speed

There is no tough cutting material when you use this Dewalt reciprocating saw. It is ideal for use on any material.

It is a corded reciprocating saw, meaning you have to have a working power outlet near you and do not need batteries.

With a powerful 12amp power supply, the saw can handle most materials you want to cut. It provides a cutting speed of up to 2900 strokes per minute, with a stroke length of 1-1/8 inches.

It only weighs 7 pounds, which is ideal for many users and even better for you if you need to be working all day on heavy-duty applications. Carrying it is also made easier by the rubber handle so you can be sure it won't slide off your hands if you sweat.

One of this reciprocating saw's best features is that you can easily change blades on the key-less lever-action blade clamp. You can easily change your blade position to get more power or speed depending on the material you are cutting. With different blade positions, you can also expect a variable speed trigger to adjust speed for different sawing difficulties.

It is one of the best DeWalt reciprocating saws in the market today. It is versatile and rugged, and its construction is robust and sturdy.

  • Pros
  • Comes with a powerful 12amp motor
  • 4-position adjustable blade clamp
  • Excellent stroke length
  • High cutting speeds of 2900SPM
  • Weighs a comfortable 7 pounds
  • Variable speed trigger for different sawing needs
  • Ideal for heavy-duty sawing
  • 3-year warranty from the manufacturer
  • Cons
  • It could be bulky for some users
  • Corded, so you can't use it without a power source
  • Quite pricey

2. Milwaukee 2720-20 M18 Cordless Reciprocating Saw

MILWAUKEE'S 2720-20 M18 SAWZALL Reciprocating (Bare)
  • Delivers faster than corded cutting speed and the durability of a corded saw
  • POWERSTATE Brushless Motor: Supplies constant power for faster cuts and reduced heat for extended...
  • REDLINK PLUS Intelligence: Provides optimized performance and overload protection using total system...
  • REDLITHIUM XC 4.0 Battery Pack: Provides superior pack construction, more work per charge and more...
  • Patented gear protecting clutch

If you work on a project that demands convenience and power, look no further than this saw.

It is a rugged cordless saw that you can use wherever you go without worrying about a power outlet. Instead, it uses REDLITHIUM XC 4.0 batteries that are quite long-lasting.

With a powerful brushless motor, this saw will deliver excellent cutting stroke speeds of up to 3000 SPM to tear through any construction materials. It also features a variable speed trigger you can use to adjust to your specific material cutting needs.

One of the saw's best features is an LED light illuminating the cutting surface, especially in low-light areas.

This reciprocating saw is relatively lightweight for experienced users at 8.55 pounds. The two-hand saw is 17 inches long and features a belt hook for hanging it when not in use.

This saw is one of the best cordless saws out there, and the features make it just as powerful and durable as its corded counterparts. If you want a tool for a pro constructed with robust materials for powerful and convenient sawing, the Milwaukee 2720-20 saw model is your best bet.

  • Pros
  • Cordless reciprocating saw
  • Powerful 18-volt rechargeable batteries for longer sawing
  • On-board LED light for law light sawing
  • Excellent stroke speeds, 0-3000SPM
  • Robust high-carbon steel construction
  • Variable speed trigger for different sawing needs
  • Cons
  • Quite pricey
  • Relatively heavy for new users or high-duty sawing

3. WORX WX550L 20V AXIS 2-in-1 Cordless Reciprocating Saw and Jigsaw

Worx 20V AXIS 2-in-1 Cordless Reciprocating Saw & Jig Saw, Orbital Cutting Reciprocating Saw,...
  • 2 SAWS IN 1: Use the pivoting, push-button head to quickly switch between jig saw and reciprocating...
  • DO MORE IN LESS TIME: The speedy reciprocating saw uses orbital action that cuts quicker than...
  • CUTS THROUGH ALMOST ANYTHING: Meet the electric saw that does it all. Easily cut through wood,...
  • SAME BATTERY, EXPANDABLE POWER: This 2-in-1 jigsaw tool is Power Share compatible. The same battery...
  • COMPACT AND LIGHTWEIGHT: Weighing in at only 4.2 lbs., this cordless saw is light enough to hold...

If you know your tools, then you know nothing spells versatile more than this saw from WORX.

Unlike many other reciprocating saws, this one comes with one button you can press to transform it into either a reciprocating saw or a jigsaw. Weighing only 4.2 pounds, you can carry this cordless tool with you to any workshop and enjoy its quality service.

This 2-in-1 saw cuts any materials at stroke speeds of up to 3,000 SPM and an extra stroke length of 3/4inches. It is powered by 20V Max Lithium batteries that come with the saw when you buy. The package also includes the charger needed to recharge the batteries.

You will encounter no difficult task when using this saw as it is packed with all the convenient features you require. The first feature is that it supports two cutting modes; orbital mode and straight mode. This cutting mode is most ideal when working on DIY projects that require precise cutting, even if you are new to using reciprocating saws.

Another great feature is the variable speed trigger that works in both jigsaw and reciprocating saw modes. Another feature you don't get from most saws is an integrated dust blower that collects sawdust and debris as you saw to keep your work area clean and professional.

This saw is compatible with any brand of reciprocating saw and T-shank saw blades, which are readily available at any hardware store near you. This saw can cut many materials, including wood, metal, ceramic, plastic, fiberglass, copper, aluminum, and many more.

  • Pros
  • An excellent 2-in-1 reciprocating saw and jigsaw
  • Compatible with other saw blades
  • Inbuilt dust blower t keep your work station clean
  • Powerful batteries and a charger are included in the purchase.
  • Cordless and lightweight so you can use it anywhere without fatigue
  • Easy to use the pivoting button
  • Easy to change the blades
  • Robust steel construction for durability
  • Cons
  • Short battery life not ideal for heavy-duty demolitions

4. DEWALT DCS380B 20V MAX Cordless Reciprocating Saw

DEWALT 20V MAX Reciprocating Saw, 3,000 Strokes Per Minute, Variable Speed Trigger, Bare Tool Only...
  • 4-position blade clamp of DEWALT 20V reciprocating saw allows for flush cutting and increased...
  • 1-1/8-inch stroke length delivers a fast cutting speed
  • Variable speed trigger with 0-3000 spm provides increased blade control and fast cutting speed
  • Pivoting adjustable shoe extends blade life and allows depth-of-cut control
  • Rubber comfort grip delivers optimal comfort and control

Another reciprocating saw from Dewalt, this one is powered by 20-volt MAX Lithium-Ion batteries to last you long while you work.

While this saw is relatively longer than others, at 14.5 inches, it is packed with all the features a workshop owner would want.

The first feature is that the saw features a 4-position blade clamp to increase versatility and allow flush cutting. This feature allows you to set your blades in different orientations as your cutting requires, from 0 to 270 degrees.

It has a variable speed trigger of up to 3000SPM for better blade control and a stroke length of 1-1/8-Inches to deliver fast cutting. You can control how versatile and stable your saw operation is by using the adjustable pivoting shoe to extend battery life.

This saw is constructed with durability in mind, and that is why it features a double-oiled sealed shaft to prevent it from contamination, such as rusting. Additionally, your safety comes first with this saw, as it features a rubber handle to guarantee a safe grip even when it is operating at 3,000 strokes per minute speeds.

One of this reciprocating saw's best features is the adjustable blade clamp that can tilt to face any direction you prefer. The only shortcoming with the saw is that the batteries and chargers are sold separately, making it more expensive. However, it is an ideal, compact and lightweight cordless recip saw for all users, even a DIY enthusiast.

  • Pros
  • Safe and comfortable rubber grip for ergonomic handling
  • Excellent stroke length
  • Excellent stroke speeds per minute
  • Powerful motor
  • 4-position blade clamp to enhance creativity and versatility
  • Double-oiled sealed shaft to prevent any contamination
  • Cons
  • Batteries and charger sold separately

5. BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX Cordless Reciprocating Saw

BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX* POWERCONNECT 7/8 in. Cordless Reciprocating Saw (BDCR20B)
  • VERSATILE APPLICATION – Cut through wood, nails, drywall, plaster, plastic, rubber composites,...
  • VARIABLE-SPEED TRIGGER – Generates up to 3,000 spm of cutting power.
  • PIVOTING BLADE SHOE – For maximum control when turning and adjusting the angle.
  • TOOL-FREE BLADE CHANGE – Quickly swap out the blade and keep working.
  • ELECTRIC BRAKE – Built-in braking mechanism for enhanced safety.

This Black+Decker reciprocating saw is cordless, meaning batteries power it. It works with 20V Max lithium-ion batteries that provide the saw with no-load speeds of 3000SPM. This saw's blade provides an excellent standard stroke length of 7/8inches.

This reciprocating saw also features a variable speed trigger made quite efficient by a tool-less blade change system. This system means you don't have to dismember the whole saw to get the blade out. The process includes pressing the lever, and the blade is out. The pivoting shoe enhances ease of use, while an additional electric brake lets you take full control of the sawing process.

If you have a sawing task that requires a reliable reciprocating saw, this one is one of the most user-friendly. It also comes in a compact and lightweight (4.6lbs) design that allows you to take it to work without worrying about the power supply.

  • Pros
  • Very affordable for the features it packs
  • Cordless and lightweight to let you work without fatigue
  • Short stroke length of 7/8 inches for precise cutting on most surfaces
  • Tool-free blade changing system
  • Excellent stroke speeds for faster cutting
  • Reputable brand
  • User-friendly and portable2-year limited warranty from the manufacturer
  • Cons
  • Lithium battery and charger sold separately
  • Delivers some uncomfortable vibrations when sawing

Features to Look for When Buying the Best Reciprocating Saw

Suppose you have cutting work such as demolition, remodeling, renovation, tree pruning, etc. In that case, you will need to get your best reciprocating saw to finish the work faster and with less fatigue.

Here are the features to consider to make sure the reciprocating saw you get can cut through a variety of materials and serve you for many years.

1. Variable Speeds

Because you want a saw that can cut through different materials, the say you want to buy should let you adjust the speeds you want to work with.

Different materials require different speeds for efficiency and safety. For instance, you can opt for high speeds when cutting through wood but go for low speeds when cutting through metal.

2. Adjustable shoe

The adjustable shoe is the metal guard surrounding the blade. If it is adjustable, it will let you make different cuts on different materials while also giving you control and stability of the tool.

3. Different saw action

Reciprocating saws produce two types of cutting actions;

  1. Straight cuts. The blades cut in a single plane motion, or a back and forth motion.
  2. Orbital cuts. The saw blades can be adjusted to cut in oval or elliptical shapes.

When buying, you can gain more by opting for a reciprocating saw that supports orbital action on top of the traditional up and down cutting. Such a saw will be more aggressive and will let you finish your work faster.

However, it is crucial to note that using a reciprocating saw with orbital action blades requires some expertise when cutting lest you damage the designs you are working on. You can turn on the cutting speeds when sawing on more demanding surfaces, such as floorings, and then slow down on less demanding jobs such as pruning.

4. Type of saw

Probably the most vital feature to look for in your reciprocating saw is if it is corded or cordless. Depending on your project, you can either bring your saw to work or bring your work to the saw.

If you want to buy a corded reciprocating saw, make sure you have a ready power source in your work area. If you opt for a cordless reciprocating saw, ensure you have enough battery power to last you the duration you want to saw.

5. Amperage

The amount of amps or volts your reciprocating saw works with determines how strong it is. Basically, the higher the amperage, the stronger the reciprocating saw, and the longer it will last you. Ideally, the least amperage you should look for in a durable and robust saw would be 11 amps.

6. Reciprocating saw Blades

When buying the best reciprocating saws, it is vital to check the availability of extra saw blades when you need to replace yours. Like any other tool, your saw blade will finally give in, and you will need to replace it. It would be best o buy a saw that is compatible with most reciprocating saw blades in hardware stores near you.

7. Types of blades

The teeth per inch, TPI, tells you what type of material to cut with your blades. As such, they determine the types of blades you should look for in your reciprocating saw.

The following are the types of blades you should have for different cutting needs;

  1. Wood blade. Designed to cut through wood and features 5-10 teeth per inch.
  2. Metal blade. Ideal for cutting through metallic material such as nails and pipes. Have at least 10-24 TPI.
  3. Demolition blade. This is a thicker blade with 6-11 TPI designed to cut through heavy construction materials.

8. Comfortable grips

If you intend to use your recip saw for extended periods, you should pay close attention to the handles. Since recip saws are powerful tools, you need a grip that keeps your say in your hand for safety and vibration control. In most cases, a rubber handle is best.

It would be best to get a saw with an in-built vibration reduction feature, but keep in mind that this is a feature that will reduce the saw speed.