How to Sharpen Table Saw Blades

| Last Updated: March 12, 2021

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There are two popular methods for sharpening saw blade; one is to use a standard file, and the other is with a diamond wheel sharpener.

In the article below, we'll explore the sharpening methods along with some tips and tricks. 

What Are The Various Ways to Sharpen a Saw Blade?

There are a few ways to sharpen a table saw blade. However, they aren't as effective as the standard methods mentioned below. 

  • Go The Traditional Route Of A Standard File
  • A Diamond Wheel Sharpener Makes It Faster & Easier

How to Sharpen Table Saw Blades

In the section below, we'll guide you through sharpening a table saw blade using two methods, both with their own advantages and disadvantages. 

Using A Standard File

Manually filing your saw blades has been a reliable method for a long time, long before table saws were invested. It's reliable but takes much longer to complete. 

  1. Remove The Blade - Remove the blade by loosening the arbor bolt that holds it in place; this can be done using a wrench. 

  2. Clean The Blade - The importance of cleaning the blade can't be stressed enough. If the blade isn't clean, the filing won't have the same impact as it would with a clean blade.

  3. Mark How Far You Want To File - Take a sharpie and mark how far you'd like to file. Some blades will already indicate with a small line how far the depth should be on that particular saw blade.

    **As a note, if you file too much, then this could ruin the blade. You could use a depth gauge in order to correctly measure an accurate depth to file, too, which can then be replicated with the remaining teeth.

  4. Start Filing As Straight & Steady As Possible - The steadier you are, the better the outcome will be. If you're filing just one side of a tooth, the cuts will look bent or choppy. The filing should be made in small back and forth linear motions until you're happy that the sharpie mark has been met.

  5. Lubrication To Reduce Risk Of Rust - The final step is to lubricate your blade; this will help reduce the chance of rusting. You'll want a healthy amount to spread using a brush or scrap newspaper. As long as there's a coating, don't worry about any spillage. 

Using a Diamond Wheel Sharpener

This is a similar method but just replacing the file with a diamond wheel; unfortunately, there's some more preparation to this method of sharpening, but it's faster in the long-run. In this example, we use the 150-grit diamond wheel. 

  1. Prep The Jig Angle - You'll want a piece of wood level with the blade height; it should then have a diagram of the angle at which the teeth sit on your blade. This will allow you to perfectly place the blade so that each tooth will be sharpened perfectly.

  2. Set Up The Diamond Wheel - Firstly, remove the blade and replace it with the diamond wheel sharpener. Place the blade on the Jig, ensuring that it's sitting at the correct angle.

    To make it more stable, you'll be able to screw the blade in place if you drill a hole, add a nut through the blade hole, and then a bolt screwed on top. Ensure it's loose enough for it to spin.

  3. Sharpen The Teeth - The actual sharpening of the teeth takes far less than the filing method. You're simply sliding the wood that the blade is attached to into the diamond blade because you've already worked out the correct angles; you don't have to do any additional work other than the grinding. It should only take a two-second file per tooth. 

Safety Considerations to Keep in Mind When Sharpening a Saw Blade

Safety is paramount when working with machinery, especially anything with sharp blades. Below, we'll explain some safety basics to keep in mind when sharpening a saw blade. 

Ensure The Power Is Off At The Mains

A common safety practice that many seem to ignore is ensuring that all power is switched off when any maintenance or cleaning is being carried out. If you accidentally switch the power on while removing the blade, you'll have some serious injuries. 

Use Push Blocks/Sticks Whenever Possible

When you're testing out the sharpened blades, make sure to use push blocks or sticks, they allow you to keep your hands away from any danger. There are around 40,000 woodwork accidents every year. 

Protect Yourself With The Correct Safety Gear

When sharpening your blades, you should be wearing your safety glasses to protect your eyes from any shards that break away. 

A dust mask would also be suitable if there's any rust that gets removed; inhaled particles can have an effect on your respiratory system if not properly protected. 

Saw Blade Sharpening Tips, Tricks, and Hacks for Success

In the section below, we've included some helpful tips to make your life easier and without accidents. 

Mark Your Starting Point - Mark the first tooth you plan on working on, that way, you'll understand where the finishing point is; sometimes, it can be hard to determine. 

Lubricate At The End - Lubricate the blade at the end of the process in order to reduce the likelihood of rusting. It doesn't take much to properly lubricate; just wipe any excess off with a paper towel. 

Use Saw Gloves To Hold The Blade - Handling the blade while switched off can still be dangerous. It'd be worthwhile to put your gloves on when handling the blade as one slip can create a cut; the last thing you want is to be cut by a rusty tooth. 


There are many different methods of how to sharpen a saw blade. However, the above two methods are the only worthwhile method that isn't too complicated or prep heavy.