Over the years I’ve used more than my fair share of hacksaw blades, but as their lifespans never seemed to be consistent, I wondered how long the blades really last. When will I need to replace them, and how will I know when to do it? So, I did some research to find out how I can expect to maintain a brand-new blade.
How long do hacksaw blades last? Depending on how much the hacksaw is used and what types of material it typically cuts into, its blades can last for several months up to one year before they need to be changed or replaced.
Hacksaws are used to cut through heavy metal objects such as pipes and bolts, and should be part of every homeowner’s tool box. While you never know when you might need to use your trusty hacksaw, there is one more unpredictable component of this machine: the blades.
This quick and easy guide will tell you everything you need to know about how long hacksaw blades last, as well as what you should do when they don’t.
How Long Do Hacksaw Blades Last?
If you have just started using a hacksaw like me, you are probably wondering how much maintenance is required for the blades. How long hacksaw blades last is a common question among beginning users.
The answer to this question is not as direct as you might think it would be, however. In fact, the amount of time that a hacksaw blade will last will depend on a variety of factors that could make each circumstance and individual very different.
Luckily, I have compiled all of this information into
one quick and easy to follow guide. Keep reading to find out the factors that
influence how long hacksaw blades will last in different situations.
Factors that Affect the Longevity of Hacksaw Blades:
- What materials they are used for
- How often they are used
First and foremost, the materials that are being cut into with your hacksaw blade will affect how long they will last. In general, rougher and more durable materials will be more likely to wear down the teeth on the blades faster than usual.
This is especially true when the correct type of blade is not being used for the specific material that is in question.
Additionally, how often you use your hacksaw blade will also be a deciding factor in how long they last and how often they will need to be replaced.
For instance, if you use your hacksaw once a day, you will probably expect to replace the blades once every couple of months, since more use translates to more wear and tear on the teeth.
On the other hand, if your hacksaw sits in your garage and is touched only a few times a year, you can hold off on replacing your blade.
How Long Hacksaw Blades Last:
- Gentle, Irregular Use – one or more years
- Frequent/Rough Use – about two months
In general, when you are trying to figure out if your hacksaw blades will need to be replaced, you will need to assess the quality of the blades as a whole, and the sharpness of the teeth.
If the teeth are looking more rounded and dull, you will most likely need to switch them out with a whole new blade before using it the next time.
How to Make Hacksaw Blades Last Longer
Now that you’ve heard about all of the things that could potentially make your hacksaw blades become worn out before you are ready, you might be worried about having to constantly replace them.
Fortunately, I have compiled a few helpful tips that will assist you in making sure that your hacksaw blades will last as long as they possibly can.
Tips For Making Hacksaw Blades Last Longer:
- Always choose the right blade for each material
- Avoid applying too much pressure
- Clean the saw and blade after using it
The first and most important tip to consider when you are trying to make hacksaw blades last longer is to always choose the right blade for each material. To be more specific, if you are using a blade that is designed to finely cut metal on a thick block of wood, you could potentially cause a lot of damage to the teeth.
Therefore, you should always read the specific instructions for how each blade should be used to avoid premature wear and tear or any other problems that could come with incorrect use.
To go along with using the correct blade, you should never put too much pressure on the machine while you are using it. Hacksaws are mechanical devices that are designed to do most of the work for you by rotating its blades automatically.
The sharpness and edge of the teeth will already cut into the surface deeply, so you will not need to push it further into the material. This can cause the blades to dig in to the object too far and wear them down or damage them permanently.
If you are constantly pushing too hard on your hacksaw while the blades are rotating, you will probably start to notice that the teeth are becoming increasingly dull and will not be able to retain their sharpness for much longer, prompting you to replace the blade.
Finally, you should always clean both the saw and the blade after you have been using it. By cleaning the tool and blade from any debris or harmful materials, you prevent the erosion of the blades or any kind of rusting that can occur on the surface.
While the need to replace your hacksaw blades will always inevitably come no matter how much you use it, you can always follow these precautions to make it happen much less often.
When and How to Change a Hacksaw Blade
When it comes to replacing a hacksaw blade, it is important to know when you will need to do so, as well as how to go forth with the replacement when the time comes.
When to Replace a Hacksaw Blade:
- The teeth are dull
- There is outer damage to the blade (i.e. rust)
Since hacksaws can be very dangerous if handled improperly, it is best to go in with a solid game plan before you attempt to replace the blades on your own. With the help of these simple steps, you should be able to have your new blade up and running in no time!
How to Change a Hacksaw Blade – Step by Step:
- Loosen the wing nut on the handle
- Take the old blade out of the frame
- Place the new blade into the frame, with the teeth away from the handle.
- Fasten the wing nut
- Test it with a piece of scrap metal
Begin by loosening the wing nut that is located near on or near the handle of the hacksaw. This can be done by just simply turning it in a counter-clockwise direction with your fingers.
Next, you will need to carefully take the old blade out of the frame that is now open, since you have removed the wing nut. It is important to be very careful while you are removing this blade, so that you do to accidentally cut your fingers or hand on the teeth of the blade.
Once the old blade has been removed from the hacksaw and properly disposed of, you will need to carefully place the new blade into the same frame. While doing this, you should always make sure that the teeth are facing in the opposite direction, away from the handle.
After securing the new blade into this position, you will fasten the wing nut once again, this time by turning it clockwise to lock it into place tightly.
Before putting your hacksaw and new blades to use, you will want to take the precaution of testing it out. This can be done by making a small cut into an unimportant piece of scrap metal that you have lying around.
Once the hacksaw blades have been successfully replaced and they worked on your piece of scrap metal, you will be all good to put it back on the shelf for later or start using it right away!
How can I avoid purchasing replacement hacksaw blades so frequently?
If you are tired of buying new hacksaw blades every other month, you can consider purchasing a bulk set of around 50 blades. In one package, you can get a variety of sharpness and teeth counts for a fraction of the price when you buy everything together up front. This way, you won’t have to run to the store to grab a new one.
What is the safest way to operate a hacksaw?
To operate a hacksaw, you will need to use a vise to secure the material that you wish to cut, holding it into one place firmly. Then, you will hold the saw in a way that the index finger of your right hand is guiding its path, moving your entire body back and forth with every cut. Additionally, you should always wear safety equipment.