Band Saw Common Questions

These common questions about band saws are the ones our experts hear the most often from our customers. You might also find the help you need by checking the common symptoms and solutions for band saws. When you’re ready to make a repair, has the part you need, no matter where you bought your band saw.

What is a band saw used for?

With a band saw, you can do freehand cutting in wood, ripping wood into thinner slaps and also used for cutting other materials including metal when using the proper blade. Use the band saw to cut irregular and curved shapes. You can also make uniform straight cuts with a band saw. You can stack work pieces to make identical parts for a project. 

Why is my band saw blade slipping?

If the band saw blade slips off the wheels, use the blade tracking adjustment knob to adjust the blade tracking and use the blade tension knob to apply the correct tension to the blade.


If the blade continues slipping off the wheels, the wheel bearings might be worn. Replace the wheel bearings if they're worn or defective.

Why does the band saw rubber tire fall off?

The rubber tire on a band saw should fit tightly on the band saw wheel. If the rubber tire has stretched to the point that it's falling off, replace the rubber tire.

Why won’t the band saw blade move?

If the band saw blade doesn’t move when the motor is running, check three things. First, if the blade is loose, adjust the blade tension.  If the blade is broken, replace the blade, because a broken band saw blade won’t move. Finally, check the band saw’s motor drive belt and replace it if it's damaged or broken. 

Why does my band saw take a long time to cut?

If the band saw is slow to make a cut, check that the band saw blade is sharp—a dull blade cuts slowly. Replace the blade if it's dull or damaged. The blade also won't cut properly if it’s installed upside down. The blade teeth should face downward. Reinstall the blade if it’s upside down. Adjust the tension on the blade if it's slipping while cutting your work piece. 

Why won't my band saw start?

If your band saw doesn’t start, make sure the electrical outlet has power. If the electrical outlet is dead, reset the house circuit breaker for that outlet.


If the electrical outlet works, check the band saw’s on/off switch to make sure you correctly inserted the safety key.


If the safety key is in place, the power cord, on/off switch or drive motor could be defective. 

Why won't my band saw cut straight?

To make straight cuts with a band saw, use the rip fence to guide your work piece.


Using good technique helps too: feed the work piece into the blade slowly when making straight cuts and apply light pressure on the work piece when pushing it into the blade to prevent the blade from twisting and making crooked cuts.


If the band saw still doesn’t make straight cuts, check the blade and replace it if it’s dull or damaged. Adjust the upper and lower blade guides to align the blade correctly. 

How should I maintain a band saw?

One of the most important things you can do to take care of a band saw is to clean the saw often. Brush sawdust off the cutting table frequently to ensure accurate cuts. Also, because sawdust builds up inside the band saw's upper and lower cabinets quickly, open both cabinet doors and clean out sawdust often. Clean the ventilation slots on the back of the drive motor to prevent the motor from overheating.


In addition, release the saw blade tension when you don't plan to use the saw for an extended period of time. The saw blades get hot from cutting. They expand and contract and, over time, can even over tension themselves. Like getting a flat spot on your tires from sitting in one spot for too long, leaving your blade under tension, strapped around the drive wheels, creates a memory in the steel that could lead to premature failure from metal fatigue. Leaving the saw blade under tension distorts and flattens the rubber tires, making them very hard. 

How do I lubricate a band saw motor?

On most band saws, the motor bearings are sealed and permanently lubricated at the factory and require no additional lubrication. Refer to your owner's manual to determine whether your band saw’s motor needs lubrication.  

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