Corded vs Cordless Circular Saw – Which One Is Right For You?

corded vs cordless circular saw

As a carpenter or cabinetmaker, you should always have a woodcutting tool in your tools store. One such tool would be a circular saw.

Circular saws are very reliable power tools for cutting materials such as wood. And if you have other blade types, you can cut materials such as metal sheets, masonry and concrete.

They either derive their energy needs from a battery or mains electricity. Those that use batteries are cordless.

While those that use mains electricity have a power supply cord (corded). Both circular saw types have their benefits and drawbacks.

You will have to make a decision with regard to which type to buy. In this review, we’re going to look at corded vs cordless circular saw. Read on to find the circular saw type you need depending on the project at hand.

Corded Circular Saws

Corded Circular Saws

If your circular saw has a power supply cord, then it’s a corded unit. That means it depends on the cord for its electrical energy needs. You will have to plug it into a power supply outlet for operation.

These kinds of circular saws have their benefits as well as drawbacks. First, they’re more powerful than their cordless counterparts.

They provide a steady powerful performance throughout the cutting operation. Their electrical energy supply is steady and never dwindles.

That may mean a good thing though’. But, this circular saw type limits its maneuverability and portability. The power supply cord limits the size of your working space. But if a steady powerful cutting performance is what you seek, then go to this circular saw.

They are also lighter than their cordless counterparts. Their electrical energy source is external. And this design slashes off some weight off the unit. They don’t, therefore, take a toll on your muscles as much as cordless ones.

They’re quite unreliable when you’re working in an area without the mains electricity supply. But their steady power supply means they’re able to handle heavy-duty projects. Also, they should be your go-to tool for cutting hardwood and hard materials.

Besides, they have more powerful motors and larger blades. They cut deeper and can handle harder materials like metals and masonry stones.

You only need to attach the right blade to them. Looking at their price, they tend to be more affordable. But you can find some models that cost the same as cordless units.

  • Lighter and easier to handle.
  • Handle heavy-duty projects.
  • Motors are more powerful.
  • Cut deeper because of their larger blade size.
  • Have a sufficiently steady power supply.
  • They’re more affordable.
  • Limits portability and maneuverability.
  • The cord might pose a safety risk.

Cordless Circular Saws

Cordless Circular Saws

If your circular saw doesn’t have a power supply cord, then it’s a cordless unit. This means the unit runs on an onboard Lithium-ion battery. And to use your cordless circular saw, you will make sure the battery has enough charge.

Charging the battery when it’s depleted becomes mandatory. And this circular saw type comes with a charger for that matter. Their cordless design makes them very portable and maneuverable. They are ideal for professionals working in a dynamic Jobsite.

While portability and maneuverability are a plus, they tend to be less powerful. First, their motors are usually smaller and less powerful. Also, their batteries’ electrical energy supply dwindles with prolonged usage. After some time, the battery becomes less powerful.

And the motor will begin to perform with reduced cutting power. Their blades are also smaller. They don’t make cuts with the same depth as corded units. They’re ideal for light to medium-duty carpentry and woodworks.

Having an onboard Lithium-ion battery means these circular saws are heavier. And they wear your muscles faster. This makes them harder to handle when making cuts on a material.

They run for a reasonable amount of time on a full battery. They’re ideal for use in areas with hard-to-access mains electricity.

Also, they’re ideal for usage when there’s a power blackout. They cost more than their corded counterparts. But the price difference isn’t much. They cut lighter materials with great efficiency and can use anywhere.

  • Very portable and maneuverable.
  • Produce less noise.
  • More compact.
  • Convenient during a power outage.
  • Safe when use.
  • Have a limited runtime.
  • They’re heavier.
  • Less powerful.

Difference Between Corded And Cordless Circular Saws

Corded and cordless circular saws might look the same. But they’re different if you look at a few factors. Here, we will look at the factors that set the two circular saw types apart. And you will be able to choose the right type.

cordless vs corded circular saw
  • Power Source

The power source of the two circular saw types is the major separating factor. It brings a huge performance difference between the two categories of circular saws.

Corded circular saws rely on the mains electricity for a powerful performance. They use their power supply cords as the avenue for their electrical energy needs. You will have to plug them into a mains electricity power outlet.

But cordless units rely on Lithium-ion batteries for power. Their batteries are 18-20V and need 1 hour to charge to full capacity.

  • Average Size Of Blade

If you look at the blades of the two circular saw types, you will note the difference in their size. The blade of one type is larger than the other.

Corded circular saws have larger blades. Their blade sizes range from 7.25-10 inches. You can also find blades larger than 10 inches if you choose corded units.

Cordless circular saws run on batteries. They’re designed to run smaller blades because of limited power supply. Their blade size is usually around 6.5 inches. Besides, they’re designed to take on light and medium-duty cutting performance.

  • The Runtime

The power source of a power tool dictates the runtime you get from it. And circular saws are no exception! You already know the power source for corded and cordless circular saws.

Corded units depend on the mains electricity for power. Mains electricity is a steady power source. That means corded circular saws have unlimited runtime. They only stop operating when there’s a power outage.

Cordless units depend on Lithium-ion batteries for their power needs. Batteries deplete their electrical charge after some time. And this means cordless circular saws have a limited runtime. The runtime depends on the battery’s charge capacity.

The higher the capacity, the longer the runtime. Most batteries provide several hours of runtime. The batteries take 30 minutes to 1 hour or more to charge. But you can increase the runtime by buying a few extra batteries.

  • Weight And Portability

You will also find some differences between the two units if you look at their weight. Cordless circular saws weigh more than corded ones. That’s because they have onboard Lithium-ion batteries that add extra weight to them.

But, they’re more portable. They have no power supply cord to restrict their transportation to a new location. They’re also maneuverable since they don’t restrict your free hand movement.

Corded circular saws are less portable. Though they weigh less, their power cords limit their portability and maneuverability.

  • Safety

The two circular saw types differ since one is safer to use than the other. Cordless units are safer to use. They don’t have any power cord to pose a safety risk to the user. You might trip on a power cord and fall if you choose a corded unit.

Or worse, suffer electrocution because of a faulty power cord. Besides, corded options pack more power and have fast-spinning blades. They can harm you if you don’t handle them with extra care and caution.


As a carpenter and contractors, you should add a circular saw to your tools collection. They’re versatile power tools for cutting various materials. You only need to fit them with the right blade.

Each type has its own pros and cons. And choosing the right type depends on the project you have at hand.

You should choose a corded circular saw if:

  • Handling heavy-duty cutting operations.
  • Unlimited runtime.
  • More powerful.
  • With a larger blade.
  • You’re looking for a more affordable option.

And choose a cordless circular saw if:

  • Handling light-duty or medium-duty cutting operations.
  • More portability and maneuverability.
  • Less risky.
  • You want a more compact circular saw.

Since you now know how to make a decision, acquiring the right unit should be easy. Stash your tools store with the appropriate tool and take on any project. If your budget is not tight, you can buy both types of circular saws for convenience.

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