20 Table Saw Safety Tips That You Cannot Ignore

Table saw safety is one of the most important topics in the woodworker community. This is because it is a very powerful tool. Table saws are generally found in almost every wood shop, and there are many people who use them. Most accidents occur while ripping and there is no correlation between the type of the blade that is used and the accident that occurs. Mentioned below are 20 table saw safety tips that you should know so that you use one safely.


Table saw safety tips

Table Saw


  1. Wear your eye and ear protection: When you are using a power tool, it is essential that you wear all your safety equipment, including safety glasses. This is to ensure that any projectiles that fly off while you are working do not cause injury. Along with the eye protection, hearing protection is also of paramount importance. If you don’t wear ear protection, with time hearing loss will come without warning especially with continuous usage. Hearing loss is usually irreversible.
  2. Don’t wear gloves: If you don’t wear gloves, it is possible that you are not able to grip the wood you are working on properly, but, on the other hand, there is a chance that the rotating blade could grab a loose glove.
  3. No loose clothes or junk jewelry: Remember to wear appropriate clothes when working with a table saw. Also remove your tie, hanging jewelry and all other loose fitting hazards that you can think of.
  4. Check the safety features of the table saw: Before you start operating the table saw, check its safety features and make sure that they are all working properly. Adjust the saw blade, riving knife and the anti-kickback before you turn the power on.
  5. Disconnect the power before changing the blade: Don’t try to change the blade when the power is on. You should always disconnect the power before changing the blade. This will rule out the possibility of the saw turning on accidentally while you are changing it.
  6. Stand with good balance: Maintain a good stance when you are standing at the table saw. Do not stand right in front of the blade. This is because if the table saw malfunctions and a kickback occurs, the stock you are working on won’t kick back into the body; rather it will slide past your midsection. Wear footwear with non-slip soles.
  7. Is your stock less than 6”? Use a push stick to cut stock which is less than 6 inches. Basically, if your hand is not too close to the blade, you avoid the chances of getting cut.
  8. Never position your body in line with the blade: Not only does this position keeps you out of the line of kickbacks, it also keeps the sawdust out of your face.
  9. Wait for the blade to stop before reaching over it: While it looks safe, it is actually very dangerous. In order to avoid kickbacks, don’t push your work.
  10. Keep the area of operation clean: A dirty table means there will be a lot of friction and you will require more force to push the stock through the blade. If the table saw rusts, then obviously its effectiveness is reduced.
  11. Always use proper inserts: You should use zero-clearance inserts when using a table saw. If you don’t use an insert, a piece of stock that falls into the saw cabinet can turn into a projectile.
  12. Is there a foreign object on the board that is being cut? Check for foreign objects such as nails, screws or staples. All these can become dangerous projectiles if they come in contact with a spinning blade. Use a metal detector to check for any hidden fasteners.
  13. The blade should not be engaged when you are starting the saw: When you are starting the saw, make sure that the blade is running freely and it is not engaged to the stock. Allow the blade to reach its full speed before you start cutting the stock.
  14. The table can shake the stock if it gets lifted or tilted: When this happens, the first thing you must do is loosen your grip and duck down immediately. Don’t keep standing after loosening the grip as the stock may just come back towards you.
  15. Always guide the stock through the blade by using a rip fence or a miter gauge. Don’t go for a free-hand cut.
  16. Set the height of the blade according to the stock being cut: The height of the blade should be never more than 6mm above the height of the stock.
  17. Don’t talk when working on a table saw: Pay attention to the work you are doing on the table saw.
  18. Stay at the table until the blade has come to a full stop.
  19. Rip fence should be parallel: The rip fence should be parallel to the blade so that the stock doesn’t bind on the table and be thrown.
  20. Cut only seasoned and dry wood.

You can read more table saw safety tips over here: Tru.ca

Author: John Clax

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