How to Use a Tile Saw

How to Use a Tile Saw

You know what’s fun? Doing some crafty projects at home using a tile saw. You may be thinking to yourself, “how do I use a tile saw?” While they are not complicated machines to figure out, understanding how to use a tile saw will help you complete any project. Even if you’ve never picked up a tile saw before, you will know how to use one. 

I remember when I started working with tools, I didn’t have too much of a guide to help. Well, that’s why I thought it would be a good idea to make a how to article for others that had the same problem as I did. After reading through this article, you will know how to use a tile saw.

What You Will Need to Use a Tile Saw

So, you found your tile saw, and brought it home. Before you can fire it up and start cutting away, there are some things you will need. Use this checklist to make sure you have everything you need before you start cutting.

Extension cord

  • Helps you reach outlets out of reach

Gloves

  • Protects your hands and gives you a better grip

Safety goggles

  • Water shooting out of the saw can get in your eyes

Tile

  • You will need the tile you want to cut

Water

  • You need water to flow over the saw while it’s running

Waste bucket

  • All the waste water produced by the tile saw needs to go somewhere

Step by Step Instructions - How to Use a Tile Saw

Now that you’ve gotten everything you need, you can start looking at what you need to do to cut your tiles. Here are the steps you should take to use your tile safely and effectively.

Connections

  • The first thing you need to do is make sure the saw is properly connected. There is a cord that allows the power to get turned on and off. You should look where water is going to go into the tile saw, and connect a hose attached to a water line into the saw.
  • Finally, you should connect the drain outlet with another hose. You should place the drain out hose into the bucket to ensure it collects into the bucket. It’s easier to throw out the bucket of waste water than it is to try and collect it when it’s all over the floor.

Place the Bucket

  • After you’ve made all the connections, you should find a place to put the waste bucket. You will need to make sure the waste bucket is lower than the tile saw. Once you have your waste bucket in the right spot, you can put the other end of the hose into the bucket.
  • Since the bucket is collecting all the waste water, you can cut your hose to the right length, or let it sit in the bucket. If you don’t mind the bucket looking like a jumbled mess, you can move onto the next step.

Create a Drip Loop

  • Water and electricity don’t mix at all, and when you’re using a tile saw, you need to take extra precautions to ensure you use the tile saw safely. You can create a drip loop to let the water run away from the electrical connections.
  • Take the end of the electrical cord, and just make a loop with the cord. You should also set the cord up on a bucket away from the water. This prevents water from running down the cord and getting to the electricity.

Turn on the Water

  • Before powering on the water, make sure the blade isn’t turned on, and nothing is close to the blade. You should be able to tell the water button apart from the electrical power. The water switch should be brightly colored, and labeled clearly.
  • If you’re not sure which switch is right, double check before powering on anything. The last thing you want to do is have the saw start cutting your tile before you’re ready. Taking a few extra minutes will ensure your tile saw is prepared to go.

Make Sure Water is Flowing

  • After you’ve turned on the water, you should make sure the water is flowing to the blade. There should be no obstructions that are making the water splash all over the place. If the water isn’t running over the blade properly, don’t start cutting.
  • If you find that it isn’t flowing freely over the blade, turn off the water, and unplug everything. The last thing you want to do is accidentally turn on a switch before you’ve had a chance to clean it out. Since the water is the most important part of the tile saw, you should make sure it is working properly.

Turn on the Blade

  • After you know the water is flowing properly, you can turn on the machine. Before doing so, you should take one last look around the saw before powering it on. Your hands should be dry, so they don’t slip when you’re cutting the tile. Find out where your other hand is before switching on the power. Make sure there is nothing that’s touching the blade. Once everything checks out, you can turn on the saw.

Feed the Blade

  •  After you have turned on the saw, you can start feeding the blade the material. Since the blade is stationary, you only need to move the material to make the cut. You will need to stand to the side of the saw and slowly work your way to make the cuts.
  • The blade should cut through the material easily, and you should make sure you’re pushing it slowly. Even if you’re standing away from the blade, you shouldn’t let your fingers cross into the cutting line. Though the blade won’t reach your fingers, it’s better to keep them out of the way altogether. You never know if your hand might slip while you’re pushing the tile.

Check the Cuts

  • As you’re cutting the tile, you should make sure the cuts are going the way you want them to be. Check the blade to make sure it is operating at full speed, the tile is moving slowly towards the blade, and the water is flowing smoothly.
  • You also want to make sure that there are no stray parts flying away from the blades while you’re cutting. As long as everything checks out, you can continue to saw until you’re done. You should also drift the tile away from the blade as its cutting to prevent it from getting caught in the blade.

Turn Off the Saw

  • Once you’ve cut all the tile you have, and you’re all done, make sure to turn the blade off. After the blade has been turned off, you can turn off the water. Make sure you do the blade first, especially if you have some tile you need to clear off the table.
  • When the blade is turned off, you will need to make sure the water is turned off. Then you should unplug the machine, and keep the electric ends don’t contact with water. Watch where you’re walking to make sure you don’t trip over anything.

Clean the Saw

  • Finally, once everything is powered down, and the saw is unplugged, you should wipe down and clean the saw. Take a towel and make sure the blade isn’t spinning anymore when you go to wipe it down. You want to try and get all the nooks and crannies so the saw is ready to use for next time.
  • You should find a way to dispose of the water. While it seems like a good idea to pour the water on your yard, you should avoid doing this. The minerals from the tiles can kill your yard. Find a good place to get rid of the water where it won’t affect anything.

Conclusion

Tile saws are excellent tools for any home improvement project. You don’t need to only use it for tile, which is good if you have a large project you want to complete. Considering a lot of people don’t know how to properly use a tile saw, it seemed like a good idea to inform people on how to safely use one. While some people may not need to know how to use it, a good reminder never hurt.

We hope you enjoyed the article, and hopefully it will help you complete your next home improvement project. Feel free to leave any comments, or any more advice that will help others use a tile saw safely and properly. If you feel like sharing this article with your friends and family, feel free to do so.

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Garry Harris
 

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