Circular saws are some of the most commonly used tools. These powerful cutting tools are usually the driving force behind home improvement jobs and other projects.
With no cord to slow you down, a decent battery-powered circular saw provides limitless mobility and freedom. We searched high and low for the top cordless circular saws.
What is the Best Cordless Circular Saw in 2020?
While it can be difficult to distinguish the difference between saws, we found a wide range of variations to consider.
Read along to learn about the top five cordless circular saws and find out what to look for when shopping for a battery-powered saw of your own.
1. Makita XSR01Z
Best Battery-powered Circular Saw
The Makita XSR01Z is a powerful 7 1/4-inch cordless circular saw that's suitable for professional craftsmen. It boasts an incredibly user-friendly design and can churn out 5,100 RPM. Plus, it offers a variety of deep and even angled cuts.
2. Milwaukee M18 2630-20
Best Rated Cordless Circular Saw
The Milwaukee M18 2630-29 is a powerful 18-volt 6 1/2-inch cordless circular saw that can enable cuts that are as deep 1 1.2 inches and as slanted as 45-degrees. It even has a built-in electric brake for quick stops.
3. Bosch CSM180B
Best Compact Metal-cutting Circular Saw
The Bosch CSM180B is a super compact cordless circular saw. It features a 5 3/8-inch blade and can cut through a maximum of 2 inches of metal. At 4.4 pounds, it also offers easy handling.
4. Hitachi C18DGLP4
Best Cordless Circular Saw for the Money
The Hitachi C18DGLP4 is an affordably priced 6 1/2-inch saw that is both accurate and efficient. It even boasts an onboard hex bar for easy blade changes and an electric brake for quick stops.
1. Makita XSR01Z – Best Battery Powered Circular Saw (Editor’s Choice)
Makita’s 7 1/4-inch circular saw has a powerful 18-volt brushless motor that keeps it cool and running efficiently.
Still, that’s not what sets this sensational saw apart from the competition.
The Makita requires dual 36-volt LXT lithium-ion batteries which give it enough power to be one of premier portable circular saws on the market.
In fact, this saw delivers a maximum torque of 5,100 RPM. Not to mention, it boasts an ergonomic left-blade rear-handle design that makes for super safe and productive cuts.
With a potential for 558 precise cross-cuts per charge, this saw is engineered to outperform standard saws.
The Makita’s automatic speed change technology allows users to adjust the speed and torque to optimize the saw’s performance. With a 2 9/16-inch cutting capacity at 90-degrees, it can easily cut through multiple layers of material.
What’s more, this saw has an impressive 0 to 53-degree bevel range with positive stops at 22.5, 45, and 53-degrees. It is also important to note that the saw weighs just 12.4 pounds with both batteries installed, making it one of the lightest circular saws of its size.
If that were not enough, an aluminum safety cover and motor keep users hands away from potentially hot internal mechanisms. The saw even has a non-slip rubber-coated grip to keep give users maximum control and stability during lengthy projects.
Overall, we’d say the 7 1/4-inch Makita circular saw is suitable for both professional and amateur craftsmen. It’s extremely balanced, free of restraints, and boasts plenty of power. Not to mention, the saw produces smooth, accurate cuts.
- Brushless 16-volt motor stays cool during performances
- An impressive 5,100 RPM
- Automatic speed change technology improves efficiency
- Powered by two long-lasting LXT lithium-ion batteries
- Magnesium base and blade cover reduce weight
- Could use a little weight in the rear
2. Milwaukee M18 2630-20 – Best Rated Cordless Circular Saw (People’s Choice)
There’s a lot to love about the Milwaukee M18 2630-20.
For one, the Milwaukee cordless circular saw 6 1/2-inch pairs with a long-lasting rechargeable lithium-ion battery.
We’re also big fans of Milwaukee’s reliable electronic brakes, which enable you to stop the blade from turning as soon as your cut is done. Nevertheless, the saw’s strongest feature is its versatile cut settings.
In fact, it is capable of cutting as deep as 1 ½ inchwhile offering varying angled cuts. Besides that, the blade revolves at an impressive3,500 RPM, helping to achieve splinter-free cuts time and time again.
Lightweight and Compact Design
Milwaukee lightweight magnesium guards protect the blade and users’ hands from damage. In fact, the saw can even survive the impact of a high drop.
Beyond that, Milwaukee saw weighs just over 9 pounds, making it one of the lightest models on our list.
- Blower keeps cut line from of debris
- Generous and accurate bevel angle
- Speed adjusts for minimal slowdown during cuts
- Impressive cutting depth for a 6 ½-inch blade
- Lightweight magnesium guards
- 5-year limited warranty
- Top blade guard is poorly aligned
- Left-blade alignment makes it unsuitable for left-handed users
3. Bosch CSM180B – Best Compact Metal-cutting Cordless Circular Saw
The Bosch Circular Saw CSM180B offers unmatched metal-cutting power with a user-friendly cordless design.
In fact, it is currently the smallest metal-cutting saw on the market.
It boasts a powerful four-pole ferrite motor that is engineered to cut through a variety of metals.
What’s more, the 5 3/8-inch saw blade offers a 3,800 no-load RPM, making it suitable for most professional applications.
It can cut through 2 inches of metal at a 90-degree angle. Keep in mind that the bare tool is sold separately from the required 18-volt lithium-ion battery.
With a 14 by 7-inch body and 4.4-pound weight, the CSM180B is one of the easiest metal-cutting circular saws to handle.
It’s also extremely durable thanks to the steel footplate and impact-resistant cut line viewing window.
- 3,800 RPM thanks to the four-pole ferrite engine
- Lightweight and compact design
- Can cut through metals up to 2 inches thick
- Steel guard and footplate
- Overload protection
- Debris can be an issue since there is no dust blower or collection system
- Slow blade stops as there is no motor brake
4. Hitachi C18DGLP4 – Best Cordless Circular Saw for the Money
The Hitachi 6 1/2-inch cordless circular saw is an affordable yet powerful cutting machine.
It offers a maximum cut depth of 55 millimeters and a 50-degree adjustable beveled edge.
As such, you can use this saw for most home improvement applications. It’s also incredibly lightweight at just 6.2 pounds.
Not to mention, its left-side blade position makes for more user-friendly cutting performances. The saw is compatible with a 6 1/2-inch saw blade and includes a hex bar wrench for easy blade changes.
It also offers hours of uninterrupted work when paired with the Hitachi 18-volt lithium battery.
The Hitachi boasts loads of onboard convenience features to make cuts super easy. For example, a built-in spotlight improves cut line visibility.
There is also an electric brake for quick and accurate shutoffs. Meanwhile, the combination of the saw’s lightweight body and soft non-slip handle account for unmatched comfort and fatigue-free cuts.
With its small stature and easy handling, it even minimizes fatigue. Overall, it cuts clean and proficiently.
- Plenty of power for a low price (no-load speed of 4,500 RPM)
- Cuts deep and offers adjustable bevel
- Cordless convenience
- Comes with a 19-tooth stock blade
- Impressive lifetime warranty
- No low power indicator
- Not suitable for left-handed users
5. Makita SH02R1 – Best Cordless Mini Circular Saw
The Makita SH02R1 is a super compact circular saw with plenty of power.
It delivers 1,500 RPM for fast, accurate cuts. It holds a 3 3/8-inch blade, which delivers a maximum of 1-inch cuts with ease.
It also boasts a titled base for adjustable beveled cuts. It offers a 1-inch cut at 90 degrees and a 5/8-inch cut at 45 degrees. Overall, the Makita is one of the most powerful compact saws on the market.
Reliable Customer Service
The Makita saw kit is tested and inspected before leaving the factory. However, any manufacturing issues that pop up are covered by a 3-year limited warranty.
Customers also have 30 days to return their tool if they are unsatisfied for any reason. Of course, both Makita batteries and tools have a reputation for reliability.
If you’re looking for a compact, easy-to-use circular saw, the Makita circular saw is a great option. The slide-style battery slips into place without difficulty.
It’s even compatible with a variety of materials, including plywood, particleboard, melamine, and drywall. It goes to show that you don’t need a bulky, expensive saw to complete standard home repairs.
- Compact 3 3/8-inch circular saw
- 3-year limited warranty
- Weighs a mere 3.5 pounds
- A maximum of 12 volts or 1,500 RPM
- Built-in LED battery indicator light
- Not a huge amount of power
- Somewhat resistant to strong materials
How to Choose a Battery-Powered Circular Saw – Buyer’s Guide
Circular saws are typically sold as bare tools, meaning the battery is not included. In such cases, the rechargeable batteries are sold separately.
Each saw brand produces its own rechargeable battery. While these power cells are rather expensive, they can usually be used interchangeably with tools from the same brand or line.
For example, am 18-volt Milwaukee drill battery can most-likely be used with an 18-volt Milwaukee circular saw. As such, most people opt to expand their tool collection by investing in a specific brand.
For this reason alone, it is essential to thoroughly research a saw brand before making a purchase.
A good battery is of no use without a powerful motor to back it up. Since the blades in circular saw rotate to make cuts, you need to pay close attention to its measurable torque and power rating.
Saws are compatible with a variety of blade sizes. The most common circular blade diameter is 7 ¼ inches. However, blades that measure 6 inches or more can cut through standard 2-inch lumber with one pass.
Meanwhile, compact blades, or those that measure less than 5 inches, may require more than one pass to cut through standard lumber. Keep in mind that you can typically reduce the size of the blade you use with your saw.
Most saws are equipped with a standard multi-use blade. However, you can purchase blades for cutting wood, metal, and even concrete. If you intend to alternate blades frequently, you’ll want a saw that enables easy blade changes.
Most saws have preset bevel stops that allow users to make quick and accurate adjustments. Typical bevel stops include 45, 53 and 90-degree angles
While most circular saws follow a standard design, the position of the blade, motor, and handle vary greatly. For example, worm-drive saws have a blade positioned to the left and motor positioned to the right.
Worm drives also have a handle that is positioned directly behind the motor casing. As such, these types of saws offer enhanced cut line visibility. However, they are not well-suited for left-handed users.
Some circular saws have electric brakes. These mechanisms let you instantaneously stop the blade.
If a saw does not have an electric brake, you need to wait for it to manually slow down before changing any settings or replacing a blade.
Any time you’re looking at power tools, safety should be a number-one priority. Look for a saw that is made of lightweight materials, such as magnesium and steel, as these are easier to handle.
What’s more, make sure the saw you choose has a slip-resistant grip. All users should utilize safety glasses and hearing protection. Users should also take care to wear a dust mask to avoid inhaling dust and debris.
It’s hard to distinguish the difference between saws without handling them. With that said, the grip and handle of saws vary greatly between manufacturers. A saw should provide an unobstructed view of the cut line.
Once you find a saw that meets your standard requirements, you’ll want to factor in the value of any additional amenities. For example, some saws feature laser guides and/or built-in spotlights for enhanced visibility.
Some even have onboard wrenches for speedy blade changes. What’s more, some saws boast spindle locks that prevent blades from moving during changeovers.
The right circular may be the key to the success of your project. We recommend the Makita XSR01Z 18-volt X2 LXT Lithium-Ion 36V Brushless Cordless Rear Handle 7 1/4-inch Circular Saw to anyone looking for an amazing battery-powered circular saw.
Of course, the Milwaukee M18 2630-20 18-volt Lithium-ion 6 1/2-inch Cordless Circular Saw is also one of the highest-rated and most reliable cordless circular saws on the market.
Of course, with a reliable circular saw at your disposal, you’ll have no excuse to put off those home improvement jobs you’ve mulling over.