13 AMP vs 15 AMP Circular Saw
If you are playing with the idea of buying a circular saw you should check here for the top 10 circular saw options. And, options are great when you know what each one means. But, do you know the difference between a 13 AMP vs 15 AMP circular saw?
What happens when you run into questions about those deals? If you see a deal on both a 13-amp and a 15-amp saw, which one do you get? You can get some clarification right here.
This article will explain what amps are. Furthermore, it will go over what you may need higher amp saws for. That way you can be confident you are making an informed decision about purchasing.
What’s an Amp?
When you see an amp rating such as “13-amp” or “15-amp” that is an indicator of how much current can run through the tool without it degrading. The motor will carry an electrical load indefinitely. But, after a while it can impact the components in the motor and insulation.
So, the amp measures power? Not exactly. It’s the maximum amount that a tool can run and still remain under optimal temperature.
For UL tested tools, it is a measuring of how much current a tool can take and still dissipate the heat. The last thing you want is for your tool to overload. That can cause serious problems, and possibly lead to replacing the saw.
For cooling down your tool, motor speed is a factor. Air draws through the motor the faster it spins. So, in this instance more amps are better.
And, finally if a couple of tools have the same amp rating it doesn’t necessarily mean they are the same. Sometimes it depends on what type of drive it has.
For example, worm drives have more torque. They can power a blade better than an inline, or sidewinder, drive. And, your torque measures the rotational speed. So, more torque equals less stall outs.
If you are concerned about cutting power, the RPMs (rotations per minute) are what really tell you how much cutting power your saw will have. You will want to know how fast your blade teeth are pulling through your work material. And, how much torque there is behind it. Not the electrical current fed into the tool.
13 AMP vs. 15 AMP Circular Saw: How Many Amps Do You Need?
Remember that amps measure the power capacity. But, RPMs and torque are what really measures cutting power. So, how much do you really need?
It depends on the jobs you plan to do. And, how often you plan on doing them. A 13-amp circular saw is good for most do-it-yourselfers.
However, you can safely go as high as 15-amps for most home outlets. This is important because you don’t want to blow out your circuits every time you turn on the saw.
You may be asking yourself which is better: more torque or more amps. In reality, you want more torque versus amps if you plan on heavy use for your circular saw. But, if you can find both that would be even better.
For instance, a worm drive motor with 15-amps is going to give you more versatility regarding cutting projects. It has enough torque and power current to withstand longer sessions. And can cut through most material.
However, an inline, or sidewinder, motor attached to a 15-amp saw isn’t going to give you as much torque even though the power input is the same. So, you will be able to run the motor longer without it overheating. But, may not be able to cut through as many diverse materials.
Conversely, a 13-amp worm drive motor will be able to cut through a wider variety of material. But, you may only be able to run the motor on shorter stints. That’s okay if you have a bunch of small projects. Not so much so if you are on a construction site all day.
Lastly, if you are a home owner who likes to do small projects at home a 13-amp sidewinder is perfect for you. They are relatively inexpensive. But, can handle small projects.
If your wallet can handle buying a 15-amp circular saw, you should go for it. You will be able to run the motor longer for bigger jobs. However, you are still limited by torque and RPMs with what you will be cutting through.
Unless you are a professional, either 13-amp or 15-amp circular saws will be perfect for you. For smaller at home jobs, or infrequent use, the 13-amp saw may be the better deal. It has just enough power to supply your saw for small projects.
However, don’t just take our word for it. You can check out more DIY forum advice and insights online. If you are still caught between the 13 AMP vs 15 AMP circular saw, just remember that you don’t necessarily need more amps for most jobs. So, do yourself and your wallet a favor, and check out circular saws that you actually “need” instead of merely “want.”