5 Best Circular Saws Under $50 [2021 Review]

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Overshadowed by more “powerful” tools like miter saws and chainsaws, circular saws don’t always get the love and attention they deserve. Popularity notwithstanding, circular saws are arguably the most essential wood-cutting tools for home improvement projects and DIYs.

Designed to cut lumber and boards of all sizes, circular saws are astonishingly flexible and easy to use. Plus, they don’t cost all that much.

If you’re on the market for budget circular saws but don’t quite know where to start, you’re in the right place. In this article, we’ve reviewed some of the best circular saws under $50. We’ve also included individual specs, pros and cons, and a buyer’s guide right at the end.

Let’s dive right in!

Top 5 Budget Circular Saws Under $50

In terms of durability, functionality, and overall versatility, here are five of the best budget circular saws worth your attention!

Brand
Best Overall
Skil 5280-01 Circular Saw
Best Cordless Circular Saw
Black+Decker BDCCS20B Cordless Circular Saw
Best Mini Circular Saw
Hammerhead HACS120 Circular Saw
Product
SKIL 5280-01 Circular Saw with Single Beam Laser...
BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX 5-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular...
PowerSmart Mini Circular Saw, 24T 4-1/2 Compact...
Blade Length
7.25 Inches
‎5-1/2-inches
4.5 inches
Power Source
Corded Electric
Battery Powered
Corded Electric
Rating
-
-
-
Best Overall
Brand
Skil 5280-01 Circular Saw
Product
SKIL 5280-01 Circular Saw with Single Beam Laser...
Blade Length
7.25 Inches
Power Source
Corded Electric
Rating
-
Price
Best Cordless Circular Saw
Brand
Black+Decker BDCCS20B Cordless Circular Saw
Product
BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX 5-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular...
Blade Length
‎5-1/2-inches
Power Source
Battery Powered
Rating
-
Price
Best Mini Circular Saw
Brand
Hammerhead HACS120 Circular Saw
Product
PowerSmart Mini Circular Saw, 24T 4-1/2 Compact...
Blade Length
4.5 inches
Power Source
Corded Electric
Rating
-
Price

Best Circular Saw Under $50: Skil 5280-01 Circular Saw

SKIL 5280-01 Circular Saw with Single Beam Laser...

The Skil 5280-01 proves that you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars for a premium-quality circular saw. Although it won’t win any competitions in the “most powerful” category, the Skil 5280-01 offers an impressive range of features that’ll satisfy a home DIYer.

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Targeted towards beginners and intermediate-level woodworkers, the Skil 5280-01 is lightweight, compact, and easy to use.

To assist you with cutting, this circular saw is equipped with a laser guide and blower to prevent sawdust from obstructing your line of sight. It also comes with an on-tool wrench for quick and easy blade changes, as well as an anti-snag lower guard, a spindle lock, and a rubberized grip.

Features

  • Bevel capacity: 51°
  • Amperage: 15
  • Blade diameter: 7-1/4 inches
  • RPM: 5300 
  • Voltage: 60 volts
  • Dimensions: 14.2 x 9.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Weight: 6.95 pounds

When positioned at a 90-degree angle, the Skil 5280-01 has a cutting depth of 2 7/16 inches. At 45 degrees, it sits at 1 15/16 inches.

Power-wise, the Skil 5280-01 performs relatively well. Its 15-amp motor delivers a decent 5,300-RPM, making it ideal for easy to medium jobs. Paired with its compact profile, it’s fast enough to cleanly cut through a variety of materials without leaving you fatigued.

Thanks to its 51-degree bevel capacity, this circular saw gives you the freedom to make intricate cuts without sacrificing precision. It’s likewise designed with a unique 2-point line-of-sight system, granting you the ability to cut in a straight line without extra tools.

Apart from the saw itself, the Skil 5280-01 comes with a 24-tooth carbide blade, a wrench, and a carrying bag for out-of-home use.

Pros

  • Safety lock and guarded trigger
  • Dust blower for improved visibility
  • Lightweight design
  • Cutline laser for added accuracy

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a blade brake
  • Not ideal for heavy lumber work
SKIL 5280-01 Circular Saw with Single Beam Laser...
  • Powerful 15-amp motor delivers 5,300-RPM for greater speed and faster cuts
  • 7-1,4-inch carbide-tipped blade included. Spindle lock for easy blade changes.
  • 51 degree bevel capacity for a wide variety of cuts. Arbor size: 5,8 inches, cord length: 6 feet
  • Lightweight 6.95-pounds design reduces fatigue

Best Cordless Circular Saw Under $50: Black+Decker BDCCS20B Cordless Circular Saw

BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX 5-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular...

The Black+Decker BDCCS20B impresses in both versatility and convenience. Cordless circular saws for under $50 rarely exist, but Black+Decker stepped up to the plate and did the unthinkable. To this day, the BDCCS20B is among the best cordless circular saws in its price range.

When used in the proper context, the BDCCS20B is a great addition to any tool kit. Equipped with the right blade, the BDCCS20B has enough power to cut through lightweight materials like wood, fiberglass, and ceramic. It’s likewise ideal for light finish work such as trimming, molding, and carving.

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Since it’s battery-powered, the BDCCS20B shouldn’t be compared to corded tools with unlimited power. Doing so will only leave you disappointed. It doesn’t work well for professional use, either, as it doesn’t have enough power to get the job done. Instead, it should only be used in light carpentry tasks around the house and shed.

Features

  • Bevel capacity: 45°
  • Amperage: n/a
  • Blade diameter: 5-1/2 inches
  • RPM: 5300 
  • Voltage: 20 volts
  • Dimensions: 14.13 x 8.25 x 8.88 inches
  • Weight: 6 pounds

The BDCCS20B’s 20-volt battery has a load capacity of 1.5Ah, which delivers a steady 1.5 amps of current for about an hour. If you’re planning to use the tool for longer than an hour, make sure you have a few spare batteries to hand, lest it dies before your work is complete. 

In terms of bevel adjustments, this saw allows you to make 90- and 45-degree cuts with relative ease.

Its tool-less adjustment system not only saves you cutting time but also adds extra accuracy and depth without using an accessory. Plus, its small frame makes cutting immensely effortless, so much so that you can actually use it with one hand.

Pros

  • Ideal for quick and easy jobs
  • Solid build quality
  • Adjustable cutting depth
  • Compact and portable

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a battery or charger
  • At 3,700 RPM, it isn’t very powerful
BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX 5-1/2-Inch Cordless Circular...
  • Circular saw with high torque motor
  • This cordless circular saw has 5-1/2-inch fast cutting blade for a variety of cuts
  • Metal cutting circular saw with tool-free depth of cut allows for easy depth adjustments
  • Bevel adjustment with detents at 45 and 90 degrees

Best Mini Circular Saw Under $50: Powersmart PS4005 Circular Saw

PowerSmart Mini Circular Saw, 24T 4-1/2 Compact...

If you’re searching for a compact but powerful mini circular saw, look no further than the PowerSmart PS4005

Clocking at a speed of 3,500RPM, the PowerSmart PS4005 can easily cut through lightweight materials like wood, plastic, tile, and soft metals. Thanks to its ergonomic grip and lightweight build, one-hand operation is as easy as pie.

Its 4-amp motor isn’t the most powerful, but mini circular saws are usually designed for versatility and convenience rather than power.

Despite its small size, the PowerSmart PS4005 is robust inside and out. It works quite well in tight corners and spaces, making it the perfect tool for small home projects. Why pull out a bulky circular saw when you can use a mini, instead?

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Features

  • Bevel capacity: 45°
  • Amperage: 4
  • Blade diameter: 4-1/2 inches
  • RPM: 3500 
  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Dimensions: 15.55 x 7.3 x 6 inches
  • Weight: 5.92 pounds

To assist with precision, this mini circular saw comes with a laser beam guide and a ruler. The blade guard has enough of an edge to work with, so you can easily clamp down a guide fence if required.

But that’s not all. The PowerSmart PS4005 is likewise equipped with a dust extraction port and vacuum adaptor. This helps you focus on the task at hand without dust and other contaminants blocking your line of sight. It’s certainly a relief to not have to hold your breath every time you cut, so this addition is a huge plus for me! 

Like other circular saws on this list, the PowerSmart PS4005 is designed with a bevel adjustment that cuts up to 45-degrees. It has a cutting depth of 2 inches, which is more than sufficient in most applications. If you really need to, you can clamp down a guide fence

 Pros

  • Easier to use than standard circular saws
  • Ideal for delicate ultra-precision projects
  • Cuts through the material in most directions without a problem
  • Immensely lightweight
  • Great maneuverability

Cons

  • Handle might be too thick for small hands
  • Heats up after a few uses
PowerSmart Mini Circular Saw, 24T 4-1/2 Compact...
  • 4-amp electric motor – delivers a no load speed of 3,500 rpm – easily cuts through wood, PVC...
  • This mini saw comes with laser beam guide and the scale ruler, which can assist you to cut a...
  • mini circular saw can adjust the cutting depth anywhere from 0 to 1-11/16"(42.8mm) with a max. cut...
  • Compact body and lightweight perfect for one-handed operation; it features ergonomic soft handles...

Best Value Circular Saw Under $50: Hammerhead HACS120 Circular Saw

Hammerhead 12-Amp 7-1/4 Inch Circular Saw with Saw...

The Hammerhead HACS120 is praised for its power and speed. The tool’s 12-amp motor delivers a speed of up to 5,500 RPM. Since it’s fitted with a 24T carbide-tipped saw blade, it’s sharp and strong enough to cut most materials like butter.

Apart from its impressive power, the Hammerhead HACS120 is praised for its durability. Designed to impress in both function and appearance, it’s built with an aluminum upper guard, a stamped steel base, and an overall sturdy outer structure.

Its robust body not only guarantees your safety and the product’s longevity but also gives you a smooth cutting experience without unnecessary vibrations. Plus, it has an ergonomic handle to help reduce fatigue at work.

To help you with intricate work, the Hammerhead HACS120 bevels up to 45-degrees. At 45-degrees, its cutting depth measures about 1 3/4-inches. At 90-degrees, it can easily slice through materials up to 2 1/2-inch deep.

Features

  • Bevel capacity: 45°
  • Amperage: 12
  • Blade diameter: 7-1/4 inch
  • RPM: 5500 
  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Dimensions: ‎13.11 x 9.96 x 7.76 inches
  • Weight: ‎9.86 pounds

With its double trigger system, this circular saw doesn’t skimp out on safety, either. The double trigger prevents accidental activation as it requires you to use both hands to turn on the tool.

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The only reason the Hammerhead HACS120 doesn’t rank first place on this list is that it lacks “special” features. It doesn’t come with a laser guide, a scale meter, or a dust blower.

While these extra features are designed for convenience rather than necessity, I’d happily pay several extra dollars to have them at my disposal.

Pros

  • Magnesium construction for durability
  • Ergonomic grip
  • Ideal for heavy-duty projects and DIYs
  • Simple, no-frills design

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a laser guide nor meter scale
  • No special features
Hammerhead 12-Amp 7-1/4 Inch Circular Saw with Saw...
  • Strong Power and Efficiency – 5, 500 RPM motor provides more power and better performance, giving...
  • Durability - The sturdy structure, stamped steel base and aluminum upper guard make the saw more...
  • Sharp Blade - 24T Carbide Tipped saw blade is sharp enough to go through rip cuts and cross cuts...
  • Bevel Cut - Bevels up to 45° for great bevel cutting capacity

Runner Up: Galax Pro GP76321L Corded Circular Saw

GALAX PRO 12A 5500RPM Corded Circular Saw with...

At less than $50, the Galax Pro GP76321L is almost too good to be true. It has everything you need in a circular saw and more, including, but not limited to: a laser guide for extra accuracy, an adjustable fence for thinner cuts, a dust extraction mechanism, and an efficient and powerful motor.

Fortified with a strong iron framework, tough gears, and pure copper motors, this circular saw is built to last. Its 12-amp motor runs at a maximum speed of 5,500 RPM, delivering fast and full-size performance that’ll satisfy even the pickiest woodworker.

Paired with the right blade, the GP76321L can cut through a variety of materials without a hitch. This includes lumber, tiles, metallic panels, and even flooring. Since it’s designed with an adjustable fence, it can likewise accommodate thinner cuts.

Features

  • Bevel capacity: 45°
  • Amperage: 12
  • Blade diameter: 7-1/4 inches
  • RPM: 5500 
  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Dimensions: 12.32 x 9.84 x 7.72 inches
  • Weight: 9.35 pounds

To help you with accuracy, this saw is designed with a graduated ruler at the base and the fence. It also has a flexible laser that follows the line along the length.

The dust blower is likewise a welcome addition. It not only maintains the cleanliness of your job site but also gives you a clear view of the cut line.

In terms of depth adjustment, the GP76321L offers an adjustable 0-45° bevel tilt function.

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Pros

  • Double switch controls
  • Robust construction
  • Powerful pure copper motors
  • Ergonomic rubberized grip
  • Easy-to-read cut depth gauge
  • Cuts smoothly and accurately

Cons

  • Vibrates a fair bit
  • Noisy operation
GALAX PRO 12A 5500RPM Corded Circular Saw with...
  • Efficient and powerful motor: 12 Amps powerful pure copper motor windings, this circular saw can...
  • Adjusting depth of cutting and bevel angel: A depth fast and accurate adjustment lever allows for...
  • Laser and rip fence: An adjustable fence for thinner cuts, with graduated ruler markings on the base...
  • Integrated dust extraction: Powerful integral blower keeps the line of cut sawdust free; Dust...

Budget Circular Saw Considerations

Circular saws are available by the dozen in various home centers, hardware stores, and online retailers like Amazon. With so much on the table, it can be quite challenging to choose the right product that fits your needs.

To help you with your search, here are some factors and features to consider when buying a circular saw.

Circular saw on a table

Corded vs. Cordless

Like most power tools, circular saws come in corded and cordless versions.

Corded circular saws must be plugged directly into an electrical outlet to function. Once it’s plugged in, you’re given unlimited power. The only downside to corded circular saws is that you won’t be able to take them out and use them outdoors without an electric source.

Cordless circular saws, on the other hand, are powered by lithium-ion batteries found within the model itself.

Design-wise, corded and cordless chainsaws share multiple similarities. They’re both usually equipped with motors, blades, bevel stops, lasers, and dust blowers.

In terms of application, however, cordless circular saws are way more convenient. Since they’re not limited by cords, you can use them anywhere, anytime.

There’s just one problem: cordless circular saws only run with batteries. When the battery dies, you’ll have to either replace the battery to continue using them or plug them in a charger port.

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With that said, cordless circular saws generally have decent lifespans, granting you hours of charge per session. Plus, the convenience of having to use the saw at a whim even without a nearby power source is almost always worth the extra effort of charging the tool.

Power

The power of corded circular saws is usually rated in amps. If you’re planning on tackling lightweight jobs and quick DIY projects, a circular saw with a 10-amp or 12-amp rating will suffice. For heavier tasks, settle for no less than 15 amps.

Cordless circular saws are rated in volt capacity rather than amp capacity. Usually, cordless circular saws powered by lithium-ion batteries are rated at 18 volts. For lengthy work sessions, search for a cordless saw with at least 20 volts.

Revolutions Per Minute

Revolutions per Minute, shorted to RPM, refers to the number of turns a circular saw can make within a span of a minute. The higher the RPM, the faster and easier you’ll cut through the material.

Close up of a circular saw with a blade guard

Mini circular saws are designed for light to moderate work, so they typically only run at an RPM of 3,000 to 4,000.

Standard circular saws, however, can run at an RPM of up to 10,000. If you’re planning to use the circular saw for DIY projects or home remodeling, 10,000 RPM is a bit overkill. For heavy-duty work, a circular saw with at least 5,000 RPM is more than sufficient.

Cutting Guide and Bevel

Most circular saws come with a laser cutting guide and/or a scale ruler. Both of these functions aid in cutting accuracy. They help you make straight cuts without using a ruler from your toolbox.

The bevel adjustment function is something you should never go without. They help you make intricate cuts and adjust the blade to your liking. If possible, search for a circular saw that offers a bevel angle of at least 45-degrees.

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Safety Features

Last but not least, always look for a circular saw with ample safety features.

Your tool should come with an electric brake and/or a safety lock. These features stop the saw’s blade in its tracks with a single push of a button.

The shaft lock is just as essential, as it minimizes the risk of accidents during blade replacements. The shaft lock allows you to switch between blades in the fastest and safest way possible.

Also, don’t forget to check the product’s warranty. Usually, circular saws come with a one-year warranty, but popular brands such as DeWalt and Skil have a warranty period of up to five years.

Wrapping Up

All five products listed above are worth every penny spent, but if we had to choose, we’d say the Skil 5280-01 is the best budget saw we’ve ever come across, followed by the Galax Pro GP76321L. For under $50, they sure have a lot to offer. They’re both powerful and feature a laser guide and dust blower. Plus, they’re ergonomic and easy to use!

Raised with a fix-it and improvement mindset, my wife and I completely restored our Craftsman-style home. Learning how to DIY a variety of home improvement projects, I started SawsHub with my father. He's the fine woodworker, I'm the DIYer!