Tile saws are among the many types of tile cutters which are used to cut tiles in different shapes and sizes. Power tools are used to cut harder grades of tiles such as stone tiles and some clay tiles (with textured surfaces).
These tools contain diamond blades which are robust and rigid for the job. Buying the best tile saw starts by knowing which of the types of tile saws will work best for your project. An ultimate comprehensive guide from ToolsInside Blogger to buy the best tile saw is discussed below.
Types of Tile Saws
There are two types of Tile Saws: Wet Tile Saw and Handheld Tile saw.
Wet Tile Saws
These resemble standard table saws in appearance but have their cutting blade mounted in a reservoir of water.
Wet tile saws are the most precise and accurate available tool for cutting tiles.
They are by far the best choice when accurate cuts are required or for large tiling projects as in the case of cutting vast quantities of tiles or multiple room tiling.
Their operation is simple since they use a fence to line the tile up and as such, even an amateur can make close to perfect cuts with such little effort.
Specialty (angled cuts) cuts such as miter or bevel are the easiest to make. The trick to this would only be to buy an attachment with which the job is done.
Water serves as a coolant to the tile saw blade which otherwise gets damaged by the extreme heat generated by friction between the tile and the surface of the blade.
It acts to lubricate during the operation thus preventing the tile from cracking due to heat effects and making the cutting process easier. Last but not least it minimizes debris and dust particles produced during cutting.
Wet tile saws are widely considered as the best tile cutting tools available. Two types of these tiles exist; these are the ones with a recirculating water pump and the pump less type.
Handheld Tile Saws
These are also called masonry saws. They find application in removing tiles or cutting countertop stones. Also, they are excellent for making odd shapes or curves.
They come in small sizes that are easy to carry around. Unless making a wet cut which requires a connection to a water supply point, these are plug and go tile saws.
Handheld tile saws come in three types.
The dry handheld saws which as the name suggest do not require water to make cuts.
Wet handheld saws come with about 12feet long hose pipe and utilize water for every cut.
The wet/dry “dual” handheld saws may cut tiles with or without water.
These tools, however, are not as accurate due to human error factored in as a result of holding the tool without prior practice or skills.
The dry variety is prone to overheating when making deep cuts or a huge number of cuts and is also messier to the user compared to their counterparts.
This means they should preferably be used outdoors. On the bright side, all three types are smaller and less expensive than massive wet tile saws.
4 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Tile Saw
You should keep these 4 factors in your head when going to buy tile saw.
Size of the Job
Firstly, when choosing a tile saw you need to consider the size of the job you are doing. Depending on the quantity of the material you will determine if you need a bigger or a smaller tile saw.
There are many types of saw for different types of work e.g. miter saw, portable table top saw, jigsaw, sawzall, chain saw, band saw, circular saw etc. But you need a good tile saw to cut tiles easily.
Larger amounts of material call for heavier, motorized tile saws because they need to be able to cut enough tiles in a set period of time.
Motorized tile saws are more expensive and take up more space. However, they are faster than manual saws. If you are dealing with a smaller job you can settle with a manual tile saw.
Manual tile saws are portable and much lighter. An average saw of this kind can cut 10 to 30 inch tiles.
Type of Material
The second thing to consider is the type of the material. There is a big difference if you are cutting thicker or thinner tiles.
Most importantly, you have to check if the cutter is compatible with the size of the tiles. If you are working with harder material such as porcelain or granite, the motorized saw is required.
In fact, for materials as hard as these two you will need a special cutting blade no thinner than 7 inches. If you are cutting ceramic tiles which are not as hard, the manual saw can do the job.
Once you have these two key factors covered, you can move onto the third which is quality. To ensure you get the right quality you need for any tile job, whether you are a professional or just doing some remodeling by yourself, you will need to look for a good brand.
There are plenty of tile saw suppliers as well as their models and types. You should always look into customer reviews before deciding which brand to go for. The most popular tile saw suppliers are Dewalt, Bosch and Skil.
Last but not least, is your budget. You will have to combine the three previously mentioned factors withing your budget to get the best for your money.
However, this may be difficult, depending on how much you are willing to spend. If you are a professional who deals with these jobs on a daily basis, investing in a high quality tool is recommended.
Good manual cutters are somewhere around 40$ which is quite affordable. However, if you need a larger machine, depending on the size and features prices go up to a couple hundred dollars.
In summary, you may consider getting a wet tile (table top) saw when dealing with larger tasks or when speed, precision, and consistency is of paramount importance.
Handheld saws, on the other hand, are best suited for small and medium tasks where thinner tile materials are expected.
Aside from the tile saw types, the other factors stated herein play a significant role when it comes to the choice of tile saws so a little homework would certainly be necessary.