Did you hear a lot that the table saw is the most fearsome woodworking power tools that cause more injuries? So, are you afraid that you can’t use this tool safely?
Don’t be afraid.
In fact, the most important aspect of using a table saw is safety. However, by following proper precautions, you can use a table saw safely. In fact, learning how to use a table saw safely can mean all the difference when it comes to making accurate and precise cuts.
Here is the table saw safety rules that will help woodworker to use the unit safely and efficiently.
- 1 Table Saw Safety Rules
- 1.1 1. Read The Instruction Manual
- 1.2 2. Don’t Forget To Wear The Appropriate Safety Equipment
- 1.3 3. Wear Tight-Fitting Clothing
- 1.4 4. Check The Safety Accessories
- 1.5 5. Locate Your Emergency Turn Off Button
- 1.6 6. Keep the Working Area Clean
- 1.7 7. Trust Your Gut
- 1.8 8. Install The Blade Guard Properly
- 1.9 9. Use Proper Clearance Inserts
- 1.10 10. Never Reach Over A Moving Blade
- 1.11 11. Never Attempt to Cut Free-Handed
- 1.12 12. Use A Splitter, Push Stick Or Push Shoe
- 1.13 13. Visually Check The Workpiece For Any Dangerous Objects
- 1.14 14. Maintain A Good Standing Position On A Wide Base
- 1.15 15. Use A Stand Or Outfeed Tables When Need
- 1.16 16. Don’t Cut Water Damaged Or Warped Boards
- 2 What Should You Not Do When Using a Table Saw
- 3 Position During Cutting
Table Saw Safety Rules
1. Read The Instruction Manual
The first thing you should do is read the manual to understand the installation and use of the tool. Reading the manual will not only help you to know the location of each part but also learn the proper safety precautions of the specific model.
2. Don’t Forget To Wear The Appropriate Safety Equipment
While using a table saw, safety is the priority. Wear safety glasses for eye protection. Always wear woodworking earmuffs or earplugs for your ear protection as table saws are loud enough while running. Also, wear the best woodworking dust mask as it’ll prevent potential flying objects, wood debris and sawdust from flying into your eyes, face, and head.
Our recommended safety gears-
3. Wear Tight-Fitting Clothing
You should wear appropriate clothing. Your clothing should be tight enough while working with the table saw. Avoid wearing neckties, loose-fitting clothing, and jewelry. These may get caught in the saw and cause injury.
4. Check The Safety Accessories
It’s a good practice to check all the safety features/ accessories of your tool before you start working. Make sure that they’re functioning correctly. The blade guard, splitters and anti-kickback pawls, riving knife, sensor, magnetic switch, push stick are some of the safety features that you must check before you turn on the power.
5. Locate Your Emergency Turn Off Button
If your working board is kicking back or if there is an accident, you may need to turn off the unit immediately. So, it’s essential to locate the safety switch or the emergencies turn off button or paddle of your unit.
6. Keep the Working Area Clean
Keep the saw table and the surrounding working area clear of stock and cutoffs. Otherwise, these may get in the way and impair your ability to make a clean and safe cut.
7. Trust Your Gut
Before starting your cutting job with a table saw, you need a proper mindset. If you’re uncomfortable to use the tool or feel anxiety, first make yourself out of this condition. Pay attention to what you’re doing.
8. Install The Blade Guard Properly
It’ll keep your fingers safely away from the blade. It’ll also prevent sawdust and debris from kicking back. If there is no blade guard installed to your table saw, purchase one and re-install the original one that comes with the tool.
9. Use Proper Clearance Inserts
Use a clearance insert to protect your fingers from being close to the blade. It’ll allow a buffer zone, especially when cutting thin boards.
10. Never Reach Over A Moving Blade
While the blade is moving, never reach or make any blade adjustments. Disconnect the power and wait until the blade comes to a full stop position. Then make the adjustments or blade change if needed. If you need to reset a tripped circuit breaker or replace a fuse, unplug the saw first. Also, disconnect the saw when you’re not using it.
11. Never Attempt to Cut Free-Handed
Use the miter gauge or fence to guide the workpiece to the blade. Never use free-hand while cutting with a table saw. But why is it important to use these accessories?
A miter gauge or rip fence protects the stock from binding or twisting in the middle of the cutting process. Thus, they prevent kickback.
Never use the miter gauge and fence together. Use a rip fence for rip cuts and the miter gauge for crosscuts. Many woodworkers using a rip fence for crosscuts.This a big mistake and dangerous too.
12. Use A Splitter, Push Stick Or Push Shoe
Most of the table saw injuries are caused by the kickback. There are some ways to prevent kickback.
- Use a raven knife. It’ll not let the stock to touch the weird side of the blade.
- Use splitters. These are inserted into the plate to keep the stock separated from the blade while you cut.
When cutting thin or short (less than six inches) board, you must use a splitter, Push Stick or push shoe to help guide the workpiece as it gets cut.
13. Visually Check The Workpiece For Any Dangerous Objects
Nail, staple, screw, or a loose knot in the workpiece may become a danger if it comes in contact with the moving blade. You can also use a metal detector for checking those objects, especially if you need to work with recycled materials.
14. Maintain A Good Standing Position On A Wide Base
While working with a table saw, it’s important to keep a good balance. Avoid standing directly in front of the blade/ behind the workpiece. Stand a little bit side of the blade. It’ll help you to stand safe in case a kickback occurs.
15. Use A Stand Or Outfeed Tables When Need
While cutting, to help support the larger pieces of stock use the stand or outfeed table. It’ll help you to make the workpiece more stable and the cutting process easier to finish.
16. Don’t Cut Water Damaged Or Warped Boards
Avoid cutting bent, warped, or damaged boards as these may make rough cuts. It may also cause wood to kickback.
What Should You Not Do When Using a Table Saw
- Never approach your hands with the moving blade.
- Do not advance the piece of wood faster than the maximum speed of the saw.
- Do not let a saw run unattended. Turn off the power and make sure the machine has stopped working before leaving the area.
- Do not wear gloves while performing a cutting operation.
- Do not stand just behind the blade, but stand slightly to the side to avoid injury in case of rebound.
- Do not press too hard on the workpiece. Work with calm and regularity.
Position During Cutting
The position you adopt during cutting can also impact your safety and the success of your work.
To use a table saw, you have to stand up. This gives you better visibility on the board and the blade. For maximum stability, keep your legs apart. Place your support foot slightly more forward than the other.
Hands should be placed a few inches from the blade.