Cutting aluminum may not seem like the most difficult task, but not every saw is cut out for the job. One saw many people consider when they need to cut a piece of aluminum is a circular saw.

A circular saw can cut aluminum, as long as the blade is lubricated and the material is properly clamped. However, the best saw to use to cut aluminum is a miter saw.

Can a Circular Saw Cut Aluminum? 

Most grades of aluminum give you great workability and weldability. Aluminum is also very strong, making it a great material for a wide range of applications. 

The best way to cut aluminum is by using a miter saw, but you can also use a circular saw. If you want to use a circular saw to cut through aluminum, you must follow a few safety steps to ensure everything runs smoothly. 

How to Safely Cut Aluminum with a Circular Saw

Before you start cutting aluminum with any old circular saw blade, you need to keep a few safety measures in mind. These include:

  • Choose the right blade
  • Lubricate the blade
  • Clamp the material 
  • Wear protection 

Each step is important to make sure everything goes smoothly. 

Choose the Right Circular Saw Blade 

You can use standard circular saw blades to cut aluminum, but they are more likely to break off. Most manufacturers produce special blades that are made especially for cutting aluminum. 

The number of teeth on the blade is also important. If you’re cutting a thicker piece of material, choose a blade with fewer teeth. These are called rip blades.

If you’re cutting a thinner piece of aluminum, choose a blade with a high tooth count for a smoother cut. These are called crosscut blades. 

Lubricate the Circular Saw Blade

One of the biggest dangers of using a circular saw to cut aluminum is that the blade can grab the material and cause injury. Keeping the blade lubricated reduces this risk. 

One way to lubricate the blade is with blade wax sticks. These help create smoother cuts and prevent overheating. It makes a circular saw much safer to use when cutting aluminum. 

Clamp the Piece of Aluminum 

Before you start cutting aluminum with your circular saw, you will also need to clamp the material.

This will ensure you can cut with precision and your material won’t slip around.

Wear Protection 

Whenever you’re using a circular saw, wearing appropriate clothing is essential. 

Although it might seem strange, you shouldn’t wear gloves. This is because they can get caught in the blades.

You also shouldn’t wear jewelry, and loose clothing can lead to injury. However, you should always wear safety goggles.

What Other Saws Can I Use to Cut Aluminum?

In addition to circular saws, there are some other options you may want to consider when you need to cut aluminum. Some of those include: 

  • Metal Shears 
  • Miter Saw
  • Jigsaw 
  • Hacksaw 
  • CNC Machine 
  • Table Saw 

These options can work as well, or even better, for your project as a circular saw. 

Best Tool to Cut Aluminum: Metal Shears

Metal shears are one of the cheapest tools you can use to cut aluminum. 

Metal shears are perfect for smaller projects. They aren’t ideal for bigger projects, but they are a great choice when you need to cut a small piece of aluminum quickly.

There is no power needed, you can use them anywhere, and there isn’t any heat that can impact the metal involved. 

Best Saw to Cut Aluminum: Miter Saw 

A miter saw is similar to a circular saw. 

This is a stationary tool where the blade is pulled towards the material, while a circular saw is a handheld tool where the tool is pushed through the material. 

A miter saw is one of the best options for cutting aluminum. 

Best Handheld Alternative to Cut Shapes: Jigsaw 

Most saws are good for cutting aluminum in straight lines, but a jigsaw is a great handheld alternative that can cut curves and shapes. 

The only problem is that a jigsaw takes a lot of skill to operate. You will need to gain some experience before you can produce a clean cut.  

Best Tool for Aluminum Pipes: Hacksaw

A hacksaw is a great tool for cutting smaller lengths of sheet aluminum. 

Hacksaws are best used to cut aluminum pipes and bars. Before you start cutting, you’ll need to ensure your hacksaw blade is sharp, as they wear down pretty easily.

Best Tool for Detailed Cutting: CNC Machine

There are multiple ways to cut pieces of material. However, if you want to do more detailed work, CNC machines are the perfect tool.

These machines also allow you to create an assembly line of identically-cut pieces. 

Best For Large Projects: Table Saw

A table saw is another great way to cut aluminum. Most have a built-in edge guide that helps you cut a straight edge. It is a great tool for larger projects.