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You know what they say — you need to have the right tool for the right job. If you’re working on a tiling project at home, a saw that you’d use to cut wood just isn’t going to cut it. You need a saw that is specifically designed to cut tile, which is considerably different. We’ve done the research for this buying guide and have found the best tile saw, saw features, and job type.
- Our Top Tile Saw Reviews
- SKIL 3550-02 Wet Tile Saws
- SKIL 3540-02 7″ Wet Saw
- PORTER-CABLE PCE980 Wet Tile Saw
- Makita 12V MAX CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Tile/Glass Saw Kit
- DEWALT Heavy Duty Wet Saw – 10″ with Stand
- Tile Saw Uses
- Types of Tile Saw
- Features to Look For in a Top Rated Tile Saw
Our Top Tile Saw Reviews
For this guide, we’ve done a lot of research and provided tile saw reviews with a range of saw features. If you’re a contractor or professional, you’re going to be looking for a durable tile saw with a blade that will allow you to quickly cut tile. If you’re a homeowner, you need an accurate saw.
SKIL 3550-02 Wet Tile Saws
The SKIL 3550-02 7 Inch Wet Saw is a hearty, strong tile saw that tops the list in our guide.
Unlike the DEWALT, the Lackmond Beast makes no claims of being designed for home-use or use by a single person. True to its name, this saw is a horsepower beast, and we have it reviewed as the best wet saw you can buy.
It weighs in at nearly 120 pounds. It measures 26″ by 46” and its blade can rip up to 35” or cut a 24″ x 24″ tile on the diagonal. For professional or commercial use, this is the saw you want.
Its blade can perform bevel cuts and miter gauge cuts of 22.5 and 45 degrees as well as plunge cuts and miter cuts. Its blade will cut through materials up to 3.75 inches thick. This is the adjustable cutting head saw to use if you have the need for a large cutting capacity.
Where the Beast shines is in its water control system and blade cooling water reservoir. This tile cutting head saw features a snake-pipe and water pump, which guide you and let you control the direction and flow of water onto the blade guard with ease.
In the tray, slurry and debris are separated from clean water, which helps to prolong the life of the filter and makes cleaning the water system a snap. That’s why we love this tile-cutting head saw so much.
One thing that holds the Beast back and might make the average person hesitate to drop a lot of cash on it is its overall size and heft. The saw’s body is made mostly of stainless steel frame, which makes it not only heavier but also slightly less durable than lighter weight metals such as a cast aluminum table top. This is great for professionals that want a super solid and heavy design, but not so good for the weekend amateur because it is very heavy.
While the broad cutting surface means the saw can handle larger tiles, its blade seems to struggle to create straight cuts on these longer pieces. The bigger your cut, the more uneven it’s likely to be. Don’t be alarmed, as that’s what we found for pretty much every saw we reviewed.
That said, if you’re looking for a heavyweight and hearty saw for a job site, or if you’re a homeowner who’s ready to take your tile cutting game to the next level, the Beast might be just the thing for you.
- Motor: 15 amps
- Weight: 117.5 lbs
- Lots of cutting options and blade guard
- Cuts large size tiles
- Excellent water system
- High powered (1.5 HP) motor
Is a saw that specifically cuts tile something you’re going to use that often? It all depends on your cutting capacity for home improvement projects and your preference. But even if you only plan on working on one tiling project ever, making a small outlay for a saw that’s specifically designed to cut tiles is going to be well worth it.
- Hydro lock water containment system keeps water contained near the blade and reduce clean-up time
- Sliding side extension provides support for tiles up to 18 x 18-inch
- Aluminum table top is a durable, rust-resistant surface
- Adjustable rip fence with miter gauge for accurate straight and miter cuts
SKIL 3540-02 7″ Wet Saw
Next in our guide, the SKIL 7″ Tile Saw is possible the best tile saw on the market. Designed specifically with homeowners hoping to complete a DIY project in mind, the saw is compact, lightweight and able to perform a variety of cuts, from rip cuts to diagonal cuts, miter cuts as well as bevel cuts.
If you’re just looking to pick up a tile saw for DIY work around your house occasionally, this might be your best choice. Its highly portable, making it great to quickly whip out for a few miter cuts on a project. This isn’t the saw you want to use for professional construction work, but it will suit you adequately for smaller projects.
This SKIL saw has a stainless steel table top, which is meant to be corrosion resistant. Along with the stainless steel top, the blade rests in a cooling water reservoir (no water pump). The water reservoir under the blade on the small side. If you’re just cutting one or two tiles, that’s not such a big deal. But if your project has you cutting several tiles all at once, you might find that you need to refill the reservoir frequently. That can get annoying when you’re trying to get a job finished.
Because of their petite size and low-power motor (4.2 amps), the SKIL 7″ tile saws are probably the best tile for small jobs. That said, in our buying guide some have reported being able to use theirs to cut 12 inches x 24 inches tiles, even though the largest size recommended is 12 inches x 12 inches. So, you might be able to push the limits, but buyer beware!
The tile saw’s compact size can also be a drawback. It’s relatively lightweight (coming in at under 20 pounds), which can give it a flimsy feel. However, this SKIL tile saw provides an adjustable rip fence with miter gauge for relatively decent accuracy. Along with the adjustable rip fence, you can also perform miter gauge cuts up to 25.5 and 45 degrees with this feature.
- Motor: 4.2 amps
- Weight: 17.69 lbs
- Miter gauge for accuracy
- Adjustable rip fence with miter gauge
- Designed for the DIY-er
- Comes with a 7″ diamond blade
- Offers a variety of cuts
- Corrosive resistant stainless steel top supports tiles up to 12 x 12-inch
- Adjustable rip fence with miter gauge for accurate straight and miter cuts
- Blade cooling water reservoir to keep blade cool while minimizing dust and debris
- Bevel cuts tile from 0 to 45 degrees. Cut material: Stone/Masonry
PORTER-CABLE PCE980 Wet Tile Saw
Third in our guide, the PORTER-CABLE PCE980 Wet Tile Saw is the best affordable wet tile saw. It is a handheld model that you can use either wet or dry. The saw comes with a 13 foot water line that you can connect to a source of water.
The water nozzle connector is a bit fragile, so you’ll need to be careful with it. You tap right into a water line at your jobsite by using a hose or something similar.
The PORTER-CABLE features a cast aluminum table adjustable rip fence, and also has the capability to make rip cuts up to 45 degrees.
The handheld saw is probably for jobs that are on the small side. Its maximum cutting depth is just over three inches, so it’s not the tool for you if you need to slice through thick slabs of marble or granite. But if you have a lot of tiles to cut for a job, the saw will work just fine.
The motor of the PORTER-CABLE wet tile saw is more than twice as powerful as the one found on the SKIL saw, at 10.8 amps (1,300 watts). When the blade is fresh and sharp, slicing through even the toughest of stone can feel likely slicing through a soft stick of butter.
Since it is a handheld saw, one thing that can get in the way of it working as well as it could is if the person using it gets tired. The saw includes an anti-fatigue feature that holds the button in place and keeps you from getting worn out when you’re making lots of cuts in a row.
Also, the saw is relatively lightweight, weighing just over six pounds. You won’t feel like you’re lugging around a bowling ball.
Of course, no handheld saw in our guide is perfect and that includes the model from PORTER-CABLE. Perhaps the most significant issue with the saw its blade. The diamond blade measures 4 3/8”, which isn’t exactly a standard size.
When the blade gets dull (and it will), you’ll need to special order a replacement from the company or online. It’s not a blade you’re likely to find at your local hardware store.
If you’re looking for a corded handheld tile saw, the PORTER-CABLE PCE980 model has a lot to offer you.
- Motor: 10.8 amps
- Weight: 9 lbs
- Performs a variety of cuts, including bevel cuts
- Attaches to external source for water
- Corded, so no need to charge
- Includes anti-fatigue features
- Relatively powerful motor
- Onboard miter square to help line up miter cuts and repeatable rip cuts
- Roll cage for easy carrying and protection of the cutting cart
- Splash guard keeps water from spraying the tool operator
- Stainless steel fixed deck holds up to water and jobsite abuse
Makita 12V MAX CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Tile/Glass Saw Kit
What if you’re working at a site that has limited outlets or no power at all? You’ll need a cordless tile saw. For some, the Makita 12V MAX CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Tile/Glass Saw Kit is the ideal pick.
Along with being cordless, the Makita Tile/Glass Saw has a lot going for it. It’s lightweight, weighing just 4 pounds. It includes a water tank that holds about half a liter (16.9 ounces) of water.
The saw features two batteries and a charger. You also have the option of upgrading to lithium batteries, which provide a long time of use and a slower self-discharge.
The saw’s small size does work against it somewhat. It can only cut tiles or glass up to a depth of 1″. That pretty much means you’ll be limited to cutting porcelain and ceramic tiles with this saw, versus slabs of stone.
That 16.9-ounce water tank can also be both a blessing and a curse. Its nice not having to worry about finding a water spot to connect it to, but having to stop and refill the tank frequently can slow down your project.
What you get in terms of convenience with the cordless saw you give up regarding power. You might find that it’s slow going cutting through the tile and that the battery life doesn’t last as long as you’d like. Some have noticed that cutting through one tile drained their batteries by about half.
Still, if you’re on the market for a supremely portable, ultra-lightweight saw and can give up power and force for it, the Makita is a good pick for you.
- Motor: 1,600 RPM
- Weight: 6.6 lbs
- Can work with blades for tile or blades for glass
- Can perform bevel cuts
- Makita-built motor delivers 1,600 RPM for faster and powerful cutting
- 3-3/8" blade delivers a maximum cutting depth of 1" for a wide range of cutting applications
- Compact and ergonomic design at only 12-3/8" long
- Weighs only 4.0 lbs. with battery for reduced operator fatigue
DEWALT Heavy Duty Wet Saw – 10″ with Stand
The DEWALT Heavy 10″ Saw with Stand is the one of the best tile saws for cutting available on the market. If you’re looking for more power and heft from your saw, you just might want to to opt for this one. The higher power also translates into an expensive tag, but you’ll get a lot more value with it.
So, if you’re an amateur tiler or are just hoping to complete one or two DIY jobs around the house, the DEWALT d24000s 10″ saw probably isn’t the saw for you. Pros or avid DIYers might want to check it out.
The DEWALT d24000s 10″ saw can straight cut up to 28” or cut tiles up to 18 inches x 18 inches tile on the diagonal. It also does plunge cuts and beveled edges and has a cutting depth of up to 3 1/8″. It can handle whatever type of job you want to throw at it.
Although the DEWALT d24000s saw is relatively high powered with a 1.5 HP motor and a 10″ blade, it’s somewhat designed for use indoors. The saw features a water containment system that keeps water from spraying everywhere while you cut.
The saw also weighs in at under 70 pounds. It’s not exactly lightweight, but it’s also not so heavy that the average, physically fit person can’t lift and set it up on their own.
- Motor: 15 amps
- Weight: 53.6 lbs
- Water containment system redirects water from the rear and sliding side extension outlets
- Cuts through all types of tile, from porcelain tile to granite.
- Includes a plunge feature
- Beveled edge cuts up to 45 degrees
- Your purchase includes One Dewalt 10-Inch Wet Tile Saw, Wet Tile Saw Stand, 10-Inch XP4 Porcelain...
- Tool dimensions: 36” L x 29” W x 24” H. Tool weight: 69 lbs. Voltage – 120V. Peak Horsepower...
- Other specifications: Arbor Size – 5/8”. Blade Diameter – 10". Diagonal Cut Capacity 18” x...
- Cutline indicator and stainless steel rollers provide stable, accurate cutting to within 1/32 inch...
Tile Saw Uses
The best tile saws differ from your typical woodworking tools you’re used to in a few ways. First, the blade is different. These saw blades don’t have teeth. Second, the blade needs to be kept wet, which eases friction, giving you a cleaner cut. Water also helps to reduce dust.
Admittedly, a tile saw isn’t the only tool you can use if you need to cut tile for grouting your bathroom wall or shower. There’s also something called a snap cutter. Snap cutters work by scoring a line across the surface of the tile. You can then “snap” or break the tile along the line to cut it.
While a snap cutter can be adequate when the edges of the tile are covered up by a baseboard or other material, it doesn’t produce the cleanest of cuts. You are also limited to only making straight lines with a snap cutter, while the best tile cutting saw lets you cut curves and other shapes.
As we go throughout our tile saw reviews, we make sure to highlight exactly what the specific saw is good for. So, often times, what you’re using the saw for dictates what kind you need (or if you need one at all).
Types of Tile Saw
You can divide these best tile saws into two main product categories: Tabletop tile saws (including free-standing tile saws and tile saws with their stands) and handheld tile saws. When you’re trying to find the a top rated saw to cut tile, you first need to identify which type of saw you need.
Handheld Tile Saw
One of the most significant benefits of a handheld saw, or portable tile saw, is that the tool is pretty quick and easy to use and transport. If you need to bring it to someone’s house for a project or move it around to different rooms of your own home when tiling, you do so with one that’s easy to use.
Another benefit of a handheld saw is that you can often use the tool either wet or dry. A portable saw usually has either an onboard container for water or a hose that connects the saw to a water supply. You can detach the tank or tube if you want to make a dry cut.
While a handheld saw can be ideal if you need to move around a lot, they do have a few drawbacks. If the saw is cordless, you might not as much power as you’d like from the tool. You may find yourself spending a long time charging the saw than using it.
If it’s corded, you might find yourself limited by cord length. While some models do have a sufficiently long cord, others have very short cables, just six feet or so. Since you can always guarantee that a power outlet will be less than six feet away from where you’re working, you’re likely to find yourself carrying around an side extension cord.
One more benefit of a handheld saw over a table-top, or free-standing tile saw: you can use the saw to cut tile that’s already installed. If the tile on the floor or wall is cracked or otherwise damaged and you want to replace it, the easiest option is to cut away the busted tile.
You can do that quickly with a handheld saw that’s quick and easy to use but not with a table-top model.
Tabletop Tile Saw
With all that said, table-top tile saws do have their benefits and advantages. If you’re going to cut lots of tiles or if you cut large pieces of tile, make sure you use a table-top saw that is going to make relatively quick work of that project
One of the drawbacks of using a table-top saw is that you might not get the smoothest cuts. Since you are pushing the tile through the blade, you’re creating friction. Even with the water to help smooth things over, there might be enough friction and grab to create rough edges, according to the Home Depot.
However, if you are tiling several rooms, or even your entire house, a table top saw is almost a necessity. Without the efficiency of the table-top model, you will spend way too much time on the project.
Both handheld and table-top tile saws let you make a variety of different types of cuts into a tile, depending on what your project is and where you’ll be installing the tile. In our reviews, you’ll be able to make sure and see what kind you’re getting.
Features to Look For in a Top Rated Tile Saw
Make sure you consider several key factors to take into consideration when looking into a tile saw. We go through each of those here:
Types of Tile Cuts
A top-rated saw for cutting tile should let you make a range of cuts into tiles, with accuracy and precision. Those cuts should include:
- Straight or “rip” cuts – A straight cut is just that. You are cutting the tile into two pieces straight across.
- Diagonal cuts – When you make a diagonal cut, you are cutting a tile from point to point. Essentially, you’re cutting a diamond blade shaped into two triangles.
- Beveled cuts – A beveled cut is made along the edge of the tile, usually at a 45-degree angle.
- Notches/L-Shape cuts – If you need to cut a notch out of the corner of the tile or need to cut the tile into an “L” to position it around a corner, you’ll need to be able to position the tile around the saw.
- Plunge cuts – A plunge cut involves dipping the blade of the tile saw into the tile, to cut out a shape, rather than cutting the tile into separate pieces. You might need to make a plunge cut if you need to cut a hole in the tile for a pipe or other object.
Where the water comes from can vary based on the type of tile saw you use. Some models feature a pump and a water reservoir. They recirculate the same water over and over, filtering it after each use to remove dust and debris so it’s unlike those woodworking tile saws where you might need a quality dust mask.
Other models connect to a hose. You can hook these up to a sink faucet or outdoor spigot. They often have a separate tube or hose that drains the used water away.
The drawback of tile saws that need a hose and a separate water source is that you need to use them in an area with a supply of water. If you’re working somewhere without any water or where the water is shut off, you’re out of luck
Another thing to consider when choosing a tile saw for cutting tile is the power of the motor. Motor power varies considerably based on the size of the tile saw. Many of these tile saws have a 1.5 horsepower motor while more heavy-duty models have a 2.5 HP motor.
Of course, the question is, does the best tile wet saw tile cutter have to set you back? The answer is most likely no. Unless you’re looking for the best professional wet tile saws and need a high-powered model for many projects, it’s likely that a more affordable model will meet your needs.