Band Saw: Won't start

A bad power supply, broken power cord, failed on/off switch or bad drive motor can prevent the band saw from starting. Check the power supply first. Plug a shop light or other electrical tool into the electrical outlet that you're using for the band saw to make sure the outlet works. If the electrical outlet is dead, reset the house circuit breaker for the outlet. If the outlet still doesn't work, try using a different outlet to power the band saw.

If the electrical outlet is okay, unplug the band saw and check the power cord for damage. Replace the cord if it's damaged. If the power cord is okay, use a multimeter to check for continuity through the on/off switch with the switch turned on (with the band saw still unplugged). The meter should measure near 0 ohms of resistance through the switch. If the meter measures infinite resistance, replace the switch because it's preventing the drive motor from getting power.

If the on/off switch is okay, check the wire harness connections between the switch and the drive motor. Reconnect any loose wires and repair any broken wires. If the wiring connections are okay, then you'll likely need to replace the drive motor because it doesn't run even though it should be getting electrical current through the power cord, on/off switch and wires.

band saw

These repairs may help solve your band saw problem

Replace the band saw On/Off switch

Replace the band saw On/Off switch

The On/Off switch includes a safety key. The safety key must be in place to turn on the band saw. If the switch won't activate the band saw with the safety key inserted, replace the On/Off switch.

April 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a band saw on-off switch

If your band saw won't turn on or off when you flip the switch, the on/off switch might be broken. This repair guide and video show how to replace a band saw on/off switch in 4 quick steps.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
Read more
Replace the band saw drive motor

Replace the band saw drive motor

The band saw motor rotates the lower wheel to spin the band saw blade. A weak motor may stop spinning when you start cutting. Replace the motor if it's weak or doesn't spin when activated.

Replace the band saw power cord

Replace the band saw power cord

The power cord attaches to the start switch to provide power to the band saw. Examine the power cord regularly for damage. Broken wires in the power cord prevent the band saw from getting power. Replace the power cord if it's damaged or broken.

Symptoms for band saws

Choose a symptom to see related band saw repairs.

Main causes: dull blade, improper feeding, loose blade tension, not using a work piece guide
Main causes: lack of electrical power, broken power cord, bad on/off switch, faulty drive motor
Main causes: dull blade, using the wrong type of blade, feeding work piece to quickly, loose blade tension
Main causes: angle indicator needs adjustment, dull blade
Main causes: dull blade, using the wrong type of blade, weak drive motor
Main causes: broken saw blade, bad drive belt, damaged rubber tire
Main causes: damaged rubber tire, worn wheel bearings, loose blade tension, dull saw blade
Repair guides for band saws

These step-by-step repair guides will help you safely fix what’s broken on your band saw.

April 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a band saw blade

If the saw blade is dull or damaged and isn't cutting cleanly, replace the blade following these steps.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 30 minutes or less
April 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a band saw drive belt

If the motor runs but the blade doesn't move, it could be that the drive belt is broken. Here's how to replace it.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
April 1, 2015
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a band saw tire

If the band saw tire has stretched or is broken and no longer stays on the wheel, use these steps to replace the tire.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
Articles and videos for band saws

Use the advice and tips in these articles and videos to get the most out of your band saw.

January 18, 2016
How to use a multimeter to test electrical parts video
By Sears PartsDirect staff

Learn how to use a multimeter to check for wiring problems in an appliance that's not working

April 14, 2015
Coiling a band saw blade for storage video
By Sears PartsDirect staff

Watch to see how to coil a band saw blade for safe and efficient storage. Band Saw Common Parts Glossary file Find out what the different parts of the band saw do. Band Saw Common Questions

April 1, 2015
Band saw common questions
By Sears PartsDirect staff

These answers to common questions can help you make the most of your band saw.