How to Cut Concrete Blocks with Circular Saw (The Right Way)

cut concrete blocks

When it comes to difficult materials like concrete, most people do not use the right tools or methods. 

Using a circular saw, you can cut concrete blocks the right way. 

This way, you can easily cut through the blocks without taking too much time. We guarantee perfect straight cuts every time you use this method. 

Quick Summary

In this article, we will discuss the following things:

  • How to cut concrete blocks with a circular saw the right way
  • The different blades used to cut concrete and why choosing the right one matters

Why Would You Want To Cut Concrete Blocks?

Cutting concrete blocks is a common process in masonry, construction, and many other projects. Sometimes people cut concrete blocks to make designs out of them or to angle out the edges. 

With the advancement in circular saw technology, you can easily cut through concrete.

Most of the time, it’s used to make control joints in the concrete. You do this to prevent it from cracking or getting weak when the block shrinks. 

cut concrete block with circular saw

The Perfect Circular Saw Blade For Cutting Blocks

There are many types of circular blades that you can use to cut through concrete. However, depending on what kind of project you’ve taken on, you might need a specific one. 

When you are wondering about how to cut concrete blocks with a circular saw, consider the following saw blades to use:  

Diamond Blade

A diamond blade is made especially to cut through concrete and other hard substances. This is because they have abrasive tips that cut through hard materials. 

You can easily make clean cuts with a diamond blade without having to worry if it will break or dull easily. 

diamond blade

Masonry Blade

Masonry blades are great blades to use when cutting concrete blocks. As the name suggests you can use them for various masonry-related projects which often include working with concrete.

Apart from that this blade is great for working on wet and dry concrete surfaces.

masonary blade

Multi-Purpose Blade

Depending on how deep you want to cut and how much work involves cutting concrete, you can use a multipurpose saw blade as well. 

These blades have hard tips that cleanly cut through tough material and it doesn’t break or give in due to pressure. 

multipurpose blades

The Tools You Would Need

If you’re looking to successfully cut through concrete blocks with a circular saw, then you need to have the right tools. 

Following are the most important tools to cut through concrete blocks:

  • Concrete block
  • A chalk line
  • Circular saw
  • Safety glasses
  • Dust mask
  • Protection gloves
  • Dust collector

The type of saw blade you use is entirely up to you. However, we strongly suggest using diamond blades during the cutting process. 

Safety Precautions

Concrete blocks are hard materials to deal with and most of the time if you’re a beginner, you are bound to have a tough time. Sometimes even those who are used to working with this material can make mistakes. 

Always follow safety instructions to make sure you are well protected. Protective gear can be a lifesaver in most situations. 

Here are safety measures to keep in mind:

  • Wear protective gloves to keep your hands from getting injured.
  • Hearing protection like ear muffs can help since blocks make screeching noises when cut.
  • Wear safety glasses since sometimes when cutting a block small pieces tend to break away and fly off. 
  • Always make sure the blade has been properly installed on the saw. 

How To Cut Blocks : A Step-by-Step Guide

It’s easy to get misled when trying to figure out the right way to cut through concrete blocks. However, with this step-by-step guide you’ll learn how to cut concrete blocks with a circular saw in no time:

Step 1

Pick the right circular saw blade depending on your project. If you are dry cutting the cement then use a diamond blade. In case you are wet cutting the concrete, masonry blades would work better. 

Remember, circular saws work best when you are using the right blade. 

Similarly, have the necessary safety equipment on in the first step as well. 

Step 2

Now you will have to mark the area or line that you want to cut with a chalk line. This will guide you during your cut. Chalk lines need to be clear and distinct so you can easily see them.

Pro Tip: Use bright-colored chalk for better visibility.

In the case of cutting grooves, mark the outline of the grove for better navigation.

Step 3

After you have marked the concrete block with chalk, adjust the circular saw and its blade. Circular saws have to align with the chalk line to make the perfect cut. 

You need to make sure the saw and the blade are connected right. 

The type of blade you use is highly important as the cutting blade will determine how your cut will turn out. Turn the saw on and wait for the blade to reach its maximum RPM before starting.

Step 4

You will not begin to cut or carve the concrete. Make sure that during the cutting process you do not put extra pressure on the circular saw blade. The edge of the blade is abrasive enough to handle a concrete block.

Take your time and go slow. It is better to have control over the cut than to do it quickly. 

A diamond or masonry blade will have the task done quicker, but with all-purpose blade’s make sure to take regular breaks.  

Step 5

Time your cutting process in intervals of 45 seconds to make sure that your blade is not overworked. Since cement is a tough material, it can put pressure on the cutting blades. 

Make timely intervals to protect your cutting blades from excessive heating or wear.

This step makes a world of a difference in concrete saw maintenance in the long run. 

Step 6

This step only comes in handy if your circular saw is equipped with a concrete cutting blade that requires water. 

Concrete cutting processes involving water need to have a second person to help.

If the block starts producing a lot of dust during the process, then increase the amount of water being applied to the cut site.

Sharpening the Saw After You’re Done

Blades that are made for cutting through a concrete block will not need sharpening after you’re done using it. You would have to sharpen all-purpose and other blades if you have used them. Diamond blades stay sharp for longer thanks to their durable edges.

How To Know If Your Blade Is Dull?

Dull blades make thicker messier cuts that do not have a clean finish. They will also visibly look blunt and overused. 

You should keep track of how much the blade came into contact with the concrete to schedule blade sharpenings. 

Tips and Tricks To Get The Perfect Cut

Apart from following the right way to cut through concrete, there are some tricks of the trade that can help you achieve the perfect results.

Use the following suggestions to make cutting a concrete block easier:

  1. Make preparations according to whether you will cut the concrete dry or wet. This will make cleaning up afterward easier for you as well.
  2. Try and work with heavier blocks of concrete as their weight anchors them in one place. You won’t have to worry about the material slipping.  
  3. Always measure the desired cuts after you have checked how thick the blade is.
  4. Use a diamond blade when dry cutting. It will help you make very clean cuts without breaking off the concrete. 
  5. Use a masonry blade when wet cutting. It will not slip due to the presence of the water and you will have better control. 

The Takeaway

The concrete cutting process can be difficult for almost anyone, but the right blade and the right method can help you a lot. 

You should always wear protective gear when working with circular saws. 

The dust produced by this process is harmful to health so make sure not to inhale that dust. Cutting concrete rocks is easy when you do it the right way.

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