Whether you are a homeowner looking to complete a tile project on the weekend or a tiling professional, finding the right tile saw can be difficult. Tile saws range in price from under $100 to a few thousand, and the advantage of one model over another may not always be obvious. There a few details to keep in mind when you shop for a saw which will help in narrowing your options down.
- Brand Name – brand name is important because you’ll probably need replacement parts, product support, and maybe repairs done by the manufacturer. Some brands that are particularly good in these areas are Felker, Target, and Imer.
- Size – don’t buy a tile wet saw that just barely meets your needs. Usually you’ll need a bigger one later, so buy one that has a larger capacity than what you need it for now.
- Type – continuous duty saws can be run all day on a crew or by an installer. If you are a homeowner who will be cutting two pieces, turning off the saw, laying the tiles, and then cutting more 10 minutes later, you’ll use an intermittent duty saw.
- Weight – be wary of a 100 lb. tile saw if you need to carry it around all day. Weight may not stop you from buying a saw, but it’s good to know what the weight is and consider how you’ll transport the saw.
- Motor – belt driven motors are preferred over direct drive because belt driven protect the motor over time.
- Materials You’ll Be Cutting – you can purchase different blades for a saw, and those will really determine the material you can cut.
- Accessories – look at which accessories are included or optional and decide whether you’ll need them. Tile Saw stands, cutting guides, and blades are commonly bundled with saws. Sometimes it’s cheaper to get the stand in a bundle rather buying it separately.
- Where You Buy It – consider the dealer and whether they provide product support or warranty separate from the manufacturer.
- Brand name (again) – sometimes you overpay for a popular brand name or pricey marketing, when a less expensive different brand works just as well. There are a few brands out there that are particularly good quality for the money: Felker, Nattco, and Buffalo Tools.