Mitre Saw UK Buying Guide 2022

Thanks for taking your time to read our extensive Mitre Saw Buying Guide aimed at United Kingdom readers. This is a long and detailed guide, exclusively dealing with lots of useful information about mitre saws.

In this guide we have provided a lot of information. Please feel free to read through this page to find out about everything to do with mitre saws.

Alternatively, you can click on the table of contents below, if you are interested in a particular feature, or want to find out some information about a particular issue with a mitre saw.

mitre saw uk buyers guide

What Types of Mitre Saw are Available on the UK Market?

There are two main types of mitre saw

  1. The Compound mitre saw - compound means the saw can make straight cuts, bevel cuts and compound cuts. A compound cut is simply the combination of both a mitre and a bevel cut.
  2. The Sliding Compound mitre saw - This type of saw is exactly the same as the compound one described above. The only difference is that the head of the saw can slide and that feature allows you to cut larger pieces of wood.
basic compound mitre saw

Compound Mitre Saw

typical sliding compound mitre saw

Sliding Compound Mitre Saw

If you look at the two images above, you can quickly see the difference. The sliding saw head sits on extending arms, and that allows you to cut wider pieces of material. That feature does make the sliding models more expensive than a standard compound saw, but it also allows you to get much more use out of your saw.

How Much do Mitre Saws Cost in the UK?

The price will vary, depending on a whole range of factors.

  • As an average though, a compound saw will cost between £75-£150 depending on the brand. 
  • A sliding compound mitre saw will cost anything between £130-£300+ depending on the brand

What Materials Can a Mitre Saw Cut Through?

The vast majority of buyers purchase a mitre saw to cut through wood. They can also cut through plastic and light metals, though for some brands this will mean changing the blade. Brands such as Evolution tend to use a universal blade that is suitable for wood, wood with nails through it, plastic and lighter metals such as aluminium and light steel.

Which Brands Sell Mitre Saws?

All of the leading tool brands will sell one or more models of mitre saw. We have provided a full list of the brands below.

Mitre Saw General Construction

It is always nice to have a few great features on your saw, but in our opinion, it is better to focus on how the saw is made, and the way it is actually constructed and put together. Most good quality brands will make their saws with high quality materials, and for saws this should be either cast aluminium or cast steel.

It is this that will ensure that your product is durable, can stand the work you will put it through, and last for a very long time.

We have always found that one of the best ways to get a good understanding of a product is to read actual user reviews. That is what we do here on this website and then collect them all in one place. That certainly takes time but it does give you a really good basis for making a final decision.

When we review the saws, we look at all of the reviews in detail, and it is clear that poor construction was a common theme for many buyers. This ranged from difficult to use guides, to poor fence construction and all the way through to cheap plastic knobs and screws.

In every single case, this was because the saw was cheap, felt light, and used hard plastic for some of the main working parts. As you can imagine that is a recipe for disaster.

We quickly narrowed our selections down to just a few brands, that was through a process of elimination. We just wanted to get down to those brands who have been around for a long time, and have consistently delivered high quality products over the years.

For sure we always look at new and emerging brands and check those out over a period of time. If they are good we will add them, and if not, then they just will not be on our site. For now we have settled for what we believe to be the top 5 brands for mitre saws on the market, Bosch, Dewalt, Evolution, Makita and Einhell.

Key Construction Features to Look For

You can sometimes tell just by looking at a product how well it is built. Even when buying online, we will always go and see the product in a store first. If we still like it we take a note of the price and then search online, as nine times out of ten we can find it cheaper there.

The overall feel and look of the product should be good. If you are in any doubt compare the saws that you see, and almost right away you will realise why one costs £50 and the better brand will cost £100.

Please don’t get us wrong as we are not “brand freaks,” but we do believe that in the end you get what you pay for.

Sizes of Mitre Saws

The most popular size is the 165 mm mitre saw. You can also buy 190 mm.

Corded vs Cordless Mitre Saws

Like all power tools, mitre saws are now available as either a corded version or a cordless version. The corded mitre saw simply plugs into an electrical socket and that is where it draws its power. With these the saw is always ready to use and the power is always constant.

The cordless mitre saw will use a battery, usually 18 Volts or 20 Volts to power the saw. The beauty of the cordless option is that it can be used anywhere and there are no trailing leads to worry about. Cordless mitre saws are however more expensive than the corded models.

Turntables

This should glide with some considerable ease and with absolutely no up and down movement. The turntable handle should be easy to pull out and push the table around.

There should also be several pre-sets that can easily be locked in, simply by releasing the knob or handle. Just make sure it moves easily in both directions and that the lever or knob is strong and will not break easily.

You want this to be a nice firm movement, but one that does not have any kind of play with it.

A Good Fence

As you may already know having a good fence that is completely straight is a key requirement. This should be tall, strong and there should be no movement in this whatsoever. After all this is what you will be pushing your wood up against, and it has to meet these basic requirements.

Many of the fences that you will see have both measurement markings and/or some type of spirit level. In our opinion, the level is way more important than some type of ruler on the fence. We can always measure any piece of wood quite easily, but we can’t really measure if the wood and saw are perfectly horizontal.

Personally that is why we like to have some type of spirit level on my saw, as at least then we know we are cutting 100% vertical.

Mitre Saw Buyers Frequently Asked Questions

Just like any other product being sold, there are complaints, concerns or problems that people have with mitre saws. A great number of these are common types of problems so we would like to advise you of what they are and how you can potentially avoid them.

The key to avoiding these issues is to find out about the potential problems before you decide which one to buy instead of after! We are sure that everyone will agree with that sentiment. Many websites will avoid telling people about these, but we just don’t see the point in that. The better informed that you can be, then the better choice you can make.

A saw, especially one with a range of added features, tends to have a very specific list of troubles that customers have experienced.

We have put together those popular questions and try to advise you on these matters so you can work out what kind of saw will work best for you and your particular needs. We would strongly recommend reading these as you will find some great information there.

Which Brands Offer Good Customer Service and After Care?

You could probably have guessed that this one would top the list. Customer service or after care is the single biggest complaint that we find when someone purchases a mitre saw. Well in fact it would be fair to say, that this applies to any product really. All the manufacturers are good during the sale's process, but afterwards, the service can be bad to excellent.

Your main concerns should cover off issues such as warranties, guarantees, “dead on arrival” and lack of response to customer enquiries. It is always worthwhile checking out what to look out for to ensure that you get the best service possible. Underneath these frequently asked questions we have provided a list of brands, and our opinion on their customer service, along with contact information.

Which Mitre Saws Last the Longest?

When you spend your hard earned money on any product, then you want it to do the job and you want it to last for a long time. The general construction and the materials used will determine that.

If you buy a cheap saw that is made from poor materials, or uses a lot of plastic in the construction, then a price will have to be paid when it comes to durability. Quite often manufacturers prefer to add gadgets and features rather than focus on a well constructed saw. When you have read as many reviews as we have, you quite soon find out that cheap plastic casings are just a recipe for disaster.

We have explained above in the section under General Construction exactly what to look for when purchasing a mitre saw.

What type of Blade do I need for my mitre saw?

On these we could quite literally write a book. The quality of the blade will determine the quality of the cut. Almost every single manufacturer provides a standard general purpose blade when you buy a saw.

The most popular complaint is without any doubt, that blades are burning the wood that is being cut. Almost always that is one of three things which is a blunt blade, or the wrong blade being used for the type of cut or wood that you are using, or the machine is set to run too fast for the material being cut.

Check out our section about Mitre Saw Blades for more detailed information.

Which Mitre Saw is the most accurate?

There is a huge difference between a 90 degree cut and an 89 degree cut. A single degree in a long cut, will leave a gap in your joint and will look pretty awful. An assumption that many people make is that the measurements on a mitre saw are extremely accurate.

This is especially true with the pre-sets. Some of these saws are just not made with that high degree of accuracy that you would think they should have. We know out of all the mitre saws that we have ever used only a couple came out of the factory with an accurate 90 degree right angle setting.

This is the most important thing to check when you receive your saw, and worth taking the time to set it up properly.

Why does the turntable stick?

When you have had your saw for a while, some people have a real problem with the turn table getting stuck. When mitre saws are new, then they can turn quite easily so as you can make your mitre cuts.

Over time though this operation can become less smooth, and in some of the worst cases, can jam completely. The main cause for this is of course sawdust falling down into the turntable and mixing with any oil or greases.

Read some great tips on how to help prevent that and also how to fix it

Is it important to have a laser on my mitre saw?

There is little question that having a laser on a mitre saw is a pretty clever idea. On the other hand if this laser is inaccurate or not a sharp beam, then it is more a hindrance than a blessing.

This is typically one of these really nice features that makers use to attract you to a product, and then when you get the actual product, it can be a proper let down. Personally we would never rely on a laser to identify a straight line and prefer the good old fashioned drawn line.

The Dewalt XPS system is the best laser by quite a distance.

Mitre Saw Customer Service Information for the UK

We don’t think there is anything more irritating that really poor customer service. When you spend your hard earned cash on a product like a mitre saw, or any product for that matter, you simply expect that should anything go wrong, that the problem will be dealt with quickly, efficiently and completely to your satisfaction.

After all, that is the basic essence and the entire purpose of a basic service to a buying customer. However, even in this day and age, we are still amazed by the horror stories, that some people have to go through just to get a basic issue resolved.

For us we believe that if you want good customer service, then stick with well established brands. They don’t always get service 100% correct, but in almost all cases they do.

Avoid Really Cheap Products and Little Known Brands

We think that you will agree that if you buy a cheap product, then the chances are that it is more likely to go wrong. More than ever, you will need to make sure that a good service and support system is in place. The chances are that quite the opposite is the case. 

Good quality mitre saws cost from £75 and all the way up to £300+. They will have a metal construction, including gears, the motor and housing. Plastic parts will break or wear away over time.

Understanding Warranties & Guarantees

It is important to understand what is meant by a warranty, a guarantee and a limited guarantee before purchasing your mitre saw. Please be aware that we are not legal experts and should not be considered s such. We simply offer our best advice and what to look out for when considering warranties and guarantees.

Warranties

Different manufacturers offer different warranties and these vary dramatically. At the high end you can get a full 3 year’s warranty and at the lower end it should be at least a 1-year warranty.

For almost all of those you do need to register (usually online these days) so please always make sure that you do that. The sad reality is that very few people take the time to do that, and many live to regret that.

Most people put that off and if they do, then more often than not, it gets completely forgotten. Failure to complete an online registration process is a huge mistake, so make sure that you get that done.

With most manufacturers they only allow a time frame of around 4 weeks from the actual date of purchase.

Almost all of the warranties that we looked at only cover parts and workmanship. To take advantage of this you will typically need the original proof of purchase, so make sure that you keep that safe. Don’t throw it out along with the packaging.

We are also aware that many manufacturers will try to avoid their responsibility by claiming things such as over loading the saw, use of non-approved accessories, normal wear and tear, if you have opened it up to have a look and anything else they can come up with.

Guarantees

People do get confused in the difference between a guarantee and a warranty. A guarantee is typically free and is a promise by the manufacturer to sort out any problems with a product or service for a certain period of time.

It is legally binding and is in effect whether you have a warranty or not.

Some saws that you may purchase could come with a guarantee but again almost all of them will require an online registration.

If you have forked out a lot of money for a saw, then please take 15-20 minutes to register the product. Guarantees are also useless if the company stops trading or goes out of business.

A warranty on the other hand is like an insurance policy and often you will have to pay for this. Some manufacturers will include this with the purchase. You may also have heard of the term extended warranty and that is simply increasing the number of years that the warranty will cover.

A warranty is also a legally binding document and can run side by side with a guarantee. Be very careful with what is written about warranties. Any that I have read are better classed as “limited warranties” whereas many buyers believe they cover everything including wear and tear. None that we have seen cover that.

Dead on Arrival

If you buy a saw from a store or online and when you open it up, always check the parts are all there. If you plug it in and it doesn’t work, then just go over the set-up guide and make sure that you haven’t left anything out. If you are then sure that the unit is not working, parcel it up and take it back to where you got it from.

If you have bought it from Amazon, then they are extremely good at dealing with this type of situation. When you return it to them they will replace it for you very quickly.

You are also covered in the UK under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 and this is especially for faulty products. This states that the goods you receive must be as described, satisfactory quality and fit for purpose. if goods are faulty then you can claim from the Retailer. That can mean either getting a replacement or getting a refund.

Brand Customer Service Contacts

Bosch Customer Service

Address: - Broadwater Park, North Orbital Road, Denham, Uxbridge, UB9 5HJ

Phone Number - +44 (0) 344 7360 109

Dewalt Customer Service

Address: - 210 Bath Road, Slough, Berks SL1 3YD

Phone Number - 01753 567 055

Evolution Customer Service

Address: - Evolution Power Tools Ltd, Venture One. Longacre Close, Holbrook Industrial Estate, Sheffield S20 3FR

Phone Number - Customer Service: National rate call: +44 (0)114 251 1022, Technical Support: +44 (0)114 251 2722

Makita Customer Service

Address: - Michigan Drive, Tongwell, Milton Keynes. Bucks MK15 8JD

Phone Number - 01908 211678

Metabo Customer Service

Address: - 25 Majestic Road, Nursing Industrial Estate, Southampton SO16 0YT

Phone Number - 023 8073 2000

Alternatives to Buying A Mitre Saw

Owning a mitre saw just makes your life a great deal easier. There are however a few alternatives to spending your money on an electric or cordless mitre saw. Click on the button below for more information on those. They include a mitre box and a precision saw.

Working Safely with a Mitre Saw

There are some general rules that apply to the use of all power tools, and these include any type of power driven equipment. There are however even more specific rules, that particularly apply to the uses of powerful mitre saws.

Now when we say rules, that is probably not the best word to use. We prefer to call them sensible and practical steps that will avoid you, or anyone else nearby, suffering a serious or even a minor injury.

One of the most popular power tools is of course the Compound Mitre Saw. Now as versatile as these tools are, if not used in the right way, they can offer a risk of serious injury.

Our writers have worked in the construction industry for years, and over that period, we have seen quite literally hundreds of accidents happen. These have ranged from simple cuts and bruises, strains, minor breaks and all they way through to loss of eyes, limbs and yes we have sadly seen two deaths.

One was from electrocution on a new building site and the other was from a major fall. The sad thing is that with just a little care, every single one of them could have easily been prevented.

General Safety Advice When Working With Mitre Saws and Power Tools

The Working Area

Although not always easy, try and keep the actual working area clean, and free from clutter. If at all possible make sure it is as well lit as you possibly can.

The easier it is to see, then the less risk there is of, danger being hid by dark areas. Never use any power tool where there are gas cylinders stored. A single spark from a power tool can easily start a fire.

Never use power tools when there are children around, and my own advice is to keep children away from any work area. They can find danger even where you didn't know it even existed.

Electrical Safety with Mitre Saws

Probably this is more important that anything else. Trust us, we have seen some clowns in our time, doing some really stupid things and paying the price for their stupidity.

If your saw comes with a three pronged cord, then it should only ever be plugged into a properly fitted and grounded outlet. We have seen people cut these off and just attach a different fitting for convenience.

Most mitre saws are corded and use what is termed a "G - 3 pin British." This has passed the BS 1363 standard and is the only plug that should be used. The saw will come fitted with the right plug. If it gets damaged just be sure any replacement is the same.

If you have a cordless mitre saw then store any battery packs on their own. Keep them away from any type of metal objects like screws and nails. Never leave your mitre saw or any power tool out in the rain or in wet conditions.

Never carry a saw by the cord and we have seen many people do this.

Avoid using long extension cords and also if using an extension cord in a reel, always fully unwind the cord before using.

Specific Mitre Saw Safety Tips

There are of course some safety issues that apply mainly to mitre saws, and we have covered these below.

These saws use really powerful motors and sharp fast spinning blades. (They spin at around 140 mph) They can cut through wood like a knife through butter, and can make short work of metals like aluminium and steel. Can you imagine what they could do to a misplaced finger or thumb?

In addition to watching this, you should of course read in full the manual that comes with your new saw. If you have bought a second hand one, then go online and you will be able to download these manuals for free.

These saws are not designed to cut through steel rods, bars or studs as that will cause sparks, and over power the motor.

Stability of your Mitre Saw

More than anything else, stability, or the lack of it, is one of the biggest causes of accidents that we have seen. These are supposed to be bolted down to a bench, or clamped to a stand.

They are not meant to be used as is when they come out of the box. We know it is not always practical to have it permanently set up, but if you are going to be using it, then it is really important to have it made very stable.

Using the Mitre Saw Blade Guard

Almost all mitre saws will come with a table guard. There is a strong temptation, especially by contractors, to try and remove this.

That guard is there for good reasons and should never be tampered with. You should check it to make sure that it is working properly and is not making the blade bind.

Support When Cutting Large Pieces of Wood

Again we have seen a number of accidents from people cutting long pieces of wood. If not properly supported by a stand, or a supporting table or table props, then they can easily fly upwards when the saw makes its cut.

That can be very dangerous. It is always best to have and use a mitre saw stand and you can read about those by clicking here.

Tripping over Cut-Offs

This is one of the most common causes of accidents in the workshop and out on construction sites. It is all too easy to get distracted with cutting wood. This is especially true if you are doing a lot of it at one time. When this happens we tend to let the smaller cut-offs just drop on to the floor.

The problem with that it that you can forget about them, and then they can be tripped over. It is so easy to sprain an ankle like this and we have seen it happen many times. These days we keep a bucket nearby and just drop any small pieces of wood into that.

Protect Your Hands from the Mitre Saw Blade

Always keep your hands as far away from the blade as you can. Yes we know that this sounds really obvious, but for some reason some users think that they need to get close to the blade to line up the cut better. At all times, and before you hit the on switch, pause and check where your holding hand is placed.


Make sure it is as far away from the blade as possible. On small work pieces always use a clamp and never your hand or fingers! Watch out for loose clothes especially around the cuffs.

These can very quickly get snagged by a spinning blade and will quickly draw your hand into contact with that spinning blade. Never ever be tempted to reach under a coasting blade as it slows down.

Personal Safety When Using a Mitre Saw

There are four areas of personal safety which we think are important when using your saw. Generally these are referred to in the construction industry as personal protective equipment (PPE).

1. Goggles or Safety Glasses

If you saw, drill, plane or do any type of woodwork, there is always the possibility of some small particle getting into your eye.

Safety glasses/goggles these days are affordable, comfortable and will just help keep your eyes safe. Sight is so very important and it takes a couple of seconds to pop these on.

Let's face it for £2 why would you not just simply own a pair of these?

2. Ear Protection

We used to hate wearing ear protection as we found it annoying. We ignored the warnings and the various proven tests that had been made. We know that mitre saws are not that noisy, but if used for long periods of time, then they can impact on hearing.

Again ear protection is cheap and effective and only takes seconds to prevent any damage to your ears. We wear them always now and wish we had many years ago.

3. Dust Mask

These saws usually come with bags which people either tend not to use and even throw away. Sawdust can easily get into your eyes and ears, but more importantly into your lungs. For the person who does the odd bit of DIY, the risk is small, but for a regular person who works with wood, the risk can be high.

By wearing a mask, using the bag or even having a proper dust extraction system, you can make this risk very small indeed. You can pick these up really cheaply in any DIY store.

4. Safety Clothing

There is no need to go crazy here, but please watch out for the basics. Any machine with moving parts can easily trap loose pieces of clothing. Typically these will be around the wrist or cuff areas. Make sure that shirts are well buttoned before commencing work.

We hope you have found the Health and Safety tips for working with a mitre saw helpful and more importantly that they will help keep you safe and well.