Table Saw Safety Tips For All Woodworkers

Table saw is the most common woodworking machine used by woodworkers. It is used for making accurate and precise cuts (types -cross, ripping and dado) of wood. It is known that the table saw is the most dangerous home power tool than any other tools like nail guns, chain saws, circular saws, etc. Roughly around 67000 cases are recorded of the injuries and accidents caused by table saws every year. (source - https://www.chaffinluhana.com/table-saw/).

Safety technology keeps on coming with upgraded options to tackle this problem, but sometimes it doesn’t prove helpful. E.g. there was an invention of plastic blade cover in the form of a blade guard to protect the users, but it seemed to be a flop show. Thus, it forced users to dump the device permanently to avoid the risk of fatal accidents. After a few years, power tool companies came up with the solution in the form of safety precautions to follow before & while using the table saw.

Safety Tips to use the Table Saw:

Before using the table saw:

  • Avoid using loose clothes, jewelry and long sleeves.
  • Never use gloves while using the table saw.
  • Ensure that the machine is in a secure position.
  • Re-check if the blade guards are in place and blade is fixed correctly & tight enough.
  • Always wear safety eye-wear and hearing protection like ear plugs.
  • Prefer to wear the non-slip shoes to obtain a firm posture.
  • Read and understand the instructions mentioned in the user manual of the table saw.
  • The proper position to stand while operating the table saw is to the left of the blade. It makes the working both comfortable and easy as the user will automatically place the blade between himself and the fence.

While using the table saw:

  • Place the splitter or riving knife in proper place to avoid unnecessary kickback.
  • Always turn off the device and wait until the blade stops spinning before clearing out the working area.
  • Ensure that your hands or fingers are not in the path of the working table saw’s blade.
  • Do not make a hurry in releasing the work-piece till it is way back past the back of the saw blade.
  • It is recommended to use the blade guard and set the blade at the correct height to ensure the safety of both user and device.
  • It is necessary to unplug the saw while changing the blade of the saw to avoid electrocuting.
  • Users should reduce the feed rate if they experience the slow down of the table saw motor.
  • It is essential to use proper zero clearance blade inserts to prevent falling of the work-piece into the saw cabinet and become projectile.
  • Check if there are any foreign objects such as nails, staple or loose knot present in or around the working piece as it can lead to a scary projection if it comes in contact with the rotating blade.
  • Using the push stick is always good for the woodworker to push the board through the blade. It will help in keeping the user’s fingers far away from the blade.
  • It is better to use a stop block while performing cross-cut short lengths. Place the stop block on the fence just before the saw blade. It is done to avoid binding of cut off pieces between blade and fence.