Quick Comparison Table
How to Select the Best Jigsaw Blades?
When shopping for jigsaw blades, you’ll find numerous ones. Which blade you buy depends on your project, whether it’s woodworking, crafting, or carpentry. If you know what blade to pick, you’ll save time and money; and using the right blade type will save wear and tear on your saw.
This buying guide describes types and purposes of jigsaw blades; reviews top-rated blades; discusses blade prices, brands, and availability; and answers frequently-asked questions about them.
Jigsaw Blade Shank Types
A blade shank is the part of the blade that fits into the saw’s blade clamp. To ensure a blade will fit your saw, you should know what type of blades your saw accepts before purchasing.
The two standard shank types are T-Shank and U-Shank. A T-Shank blade has a small protrusion called a tang on the top. This tang slips easily into the blade clamp on saws made for no-tool blade changes. T-Shank blades are the newest standard for jigsaw blades. Most new jigsaws accept only this type.
U-Shank or Universal Shank blades have a U-shaped notch on top. They require a tool for being replaced. Some have a hole for fastening with a screw, others don’t, so depending on the model of your saw you may need a specific kind of a U-shank blade. U-Shank blades have lost popularity to the T-Shank standard and are becoming harder to find. Some saws accept both U-Shank and T-Shank blades, which allows you to use U-Shank blades you have on hand. U-Shank blades aren’t really “universal” because they don’t fit saws made only for T-Shank blades.
Hook or Bayonet-Shank blades are a type of blade that’s obsolete, used mainly in old Black & Decker models.
Once you know what type of shank your saw accepts, the next step is to determine the right blade for the material and type of cut you’ll be making. The easiest and most reliable approach to choosing blades is to look for specialty blades for certain materials. Many blade manufacturers print on the packaging or directly on the blade what materials a blade will cut. Bosch is known for making blades for the widest variety of materials.
High carbon steel (HCS) blades are adequate for cutting soft wood, although high speed steel (HSS) blades are better because they’re more durable. Higher end bi-metal blades are even more durable. Blades with large, sharp teeth are good for cutting construction lumber. For finer, finished cuts in wood, blades marked “Clean for Wood,” such as the Bosch T101B, are the best choice. These blades are narrower and have no lateral offset in the teeth, which makes for clean, splinter-less cuts.
Laminate Flooring and Kitchen Worktops
Most blades have teeth that cut on the upstroke. This can cause splintering or tear-out on top of materials like laminate flooring, melamine, or plastic laminate countertops. There are special worktop blades for these materials that cut on the down stroke to eliminate chipping. The Bosch T101BR is a good worktop blade.
For cutting mild metals like aluminum, brass, and copper, HSS blades are sufficient; however, bi-metal blades are better because they don’t wear out as quickly.
Hard Metals, Steel
To keep blades from dulling quickly, bi-metal, carbide-tipped blades should be used for cutting metals like angle iron or pipe. Bi-metal blades can also be used for cutting thin stainless steel. When choosing a metal-cutting blade, select one with at least 14 – 36 teeth per inch (TPI). The thinner the material is, the higher the TPI should be. Tungsten carbide blades are made for cutting the hardest metals, but jigsaws aren’t intended to cut cast iron or hardened steel.
High carbon steel blades or multiple-purpose blades are good for cutting most plastics, including PVC. For very hard plastic, use a bi-metal blade. Special worktop blades should be used for finish cuts in plastic.
To cut acrylic glass like Perspex or Plexiglass, a multi-purpose blade or metal blade with high TPI will work. Specialty blades are made just for acrylic.
Cement Board, Drywall and Fiberglass
Carbide-tipped or specialty blades like tungsten carbide blades are made for cutting cement-fiber board, plasterboard, and drywall. Using these types of blades will prevent materials from breaking, cracking, or crumbling.
Glass, Tile, Masonry and Other Abrasives
When cutting ceramics, glass, masonry, brick, granite, or porcelain, use a carbide grit or diamond grit blade. Keep in mind that despite carbide grit and diamond grit blades are normally used for cutting concrete with other types of saws, a jigsaw will not be able to do it.
Types of Cuts
When wood blades have fewer and larger teeth, they cut very aggressively because they remove more material with one stroke. Therefore, when making rough cuts in softer woods like construction lumber, use HCS blades with 6 – 8 TPI.
Clean and Finish Cuts
A worktop or downstroke blade with a minimum of 10 – 14 TPI should be used for finish cuts. Because these blades are narrower and the teeth aren’t offset, they prevent splintering and chipping on the top side of the material. Clean-for-wood blades are used for woodworking and hobbies, as opposed to rough cutting. Blades with offset teeth make wider cuts and prevent jamming but don’t make cuts as clean. Finish cuts in plywood call for a 16 – 20 TPI blade. Blades made for clean cuts don’t work for cutting curves.
To make straight cuts, you should use a harder blade like an HSS blade with wavy teeth. By using a thicker, more rigid blade, you’ll be able to stay on your cutting line with less blade deflection.
Curves and Scroll Cuts
Scroll cuts require a special narrow blade made specifically for scrollwork, usually made of HCS with 16 – 29 TPI.
A plunge cut is made by “plunging” the blade into the field of the workpiece without a pre-drilled starter hole. Plunge cutting requires a sharp-tipped blade to slowly penetrate the material.
Blade Body Materials
High Carbon Steel (HCS)
HCS blades are the least expensive and, therefore, the most common for DIY projects. They are flexible, so they’re less likely to break; but they tend to become dull quicker than thicker, more expensive blades. Uses for HCS blades include softwoods and plastics.
High Speed Steel (HSS)
HSS blades are made for hardwoods, hard plastic, and non-ferrous metals. They are more expensive that HCS blades but cost less than bi-metal blades. They are more rigid and tend to break or become dull sooner than bi-metal blades.
Bi-metal blades usually have an HCS body for flexibility and HSS teeth for hardness. More durable and break-resistant, bi-metal blades can last ten times longer than HCS or HSS blades, but they are more expensive.
Blade Tooth Materials
A general rule for selecting a blade is to choose a blade with teeth harder than the material you’re cutting. The body and teeth of most blades are made of the same material. However, bi-metal blades have teeth made of different, more durable materials for use with certain workpieces.
These blades are bi-metal, with an HCS body and titanium or tungsten carbide teeth, and are designed for increased durability.
These blades aren’t like a typical saw blade, since they have no teeth but instead carbide grit along the body of the blade. They are used as a cutter for masonry and hard metals and can’t be used for cutting wood.
Similar to carbide grit blades, diamond grit blades have no teeth and are coated with very small bits of diamond for cutting very hard materials. They are not for use with wood.
Tooth density or “pitch” refers to the number of teeth on the body of the blade, measured in Teeth Per Inch (TPI). Blades with lower TPI are for faster, rougher cuts; and those with higher TPI are for more accurate, smoother cuts. Certain blades have variable tooth density throughout. Some areas of the blade have larger teeth, while teeth on the other part are smaller. This variation is for cutting materials with different degrees of hardness in the same workpiece.
Generally, a minimum of two teeth should be in contact with the workpiece at the same time while cutting. Therefore, thinner materials require blades with higher TPI for maximum tooth contact. With more teeth contacting the material, vibration will be lower and the cut more accurate.
Length and Thickness
A jigsaw blade should be at least an inch longer than the depth of the material you’re cutting. Longer blades are thicker and more rigid to minimize blade deflection, so you should use a shorter, more flexible blade for making clean or curved cuts. Thicker blades also cut slower than thinner blades because thicker blades remove more material with each stroke.
Reviews of Top 10 Rated Jigsaw Blades
Best Diamond Grit1
Pros & Cons
- Works well for ceramic tile, porcelain, fiberglass, and paver blocks.
- Reasonably priced.
- Minimal chipping of materials.
- Long-lasting blade.
- Blade bends with hard-grade porcelain.
- Doesn’t work well for granite.
- 6 diamond coated T-Shank jigsaw blades.
- 3” blade.
- Narrow kerf.
The Kent diamond coated jigsaw blade has a narrow kerf that provides for clean and thin straight or curved cuts. Vacuum brazing technology makes this blade sharp and durable, and chrome alloy backing gives stability. Wet use is recommended.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read KENT JIG-351 jigsaw blade reviews.
Best Carbide Grit2
Pros & Cons
- Good for cutting laminate countertops.
- Makes smooth cuts in fiberglass.
- Great for cement fiber siding and cement backer board.
- 1 carbide grit jigsaw blade.
- U-Shank design.
- 3” blade length.
Irwin’s carbide grit blade is suited for cutting cement board, hardiplank, and fiberglass. The best option among carbide grit blades we could find on the market.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read IRWIN 3071300 jigsaw blade reviews.
Best for Fiber and Plastic3
Pros & Cons
- Works well with laminate flooring with no splitting of material.
- Good control when cutting angles.
- Cuts somewhat slow with solid laminate.
- 1 fiber-and-plastic blade.
- 4” blade.
- 6 TPI.
- Variated carbide-tipped teeth.
This specialty blade is for fast, rough cuts in fiberglass and plasterboard between 1/4” and 3/4” thick and in plaster and cement board between 1 1/4” and 2 3/8” thick. The variegated teeth (upward, downward, and straight) make this blade useful for a variety of materials and applications. It’s Ideal for renovation, construction, and remodeling.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read BOSCH T141HM1 jigsaw blade reviews.
Best for Fiber Cement4
Pros & Cons
- Makes smooth cuts in fiber cement siding.
- Creates little dust.
- Works well with hardiplank.
- Works for cutting plaster.
- Strong blade.
- Somewhat expensive.
- 3 fiber cement jigsaw blades.
- 6 TPI.
- 4” blade.
- Carbide-tipped teeth.
Designed for cutting masonry, fiber cement siding, cement-bonded particle board, and fiberglass-reinforced plastic, this blade is good for aggressive rough cuts.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read HITACHI 725397 jigsaw blade reviews.
Best Blades for Acrylic5
Pros & Cons
- Makes clean cuts in Plexiglass with no melting of material.
- Good for smooth cuts with rigid foam insulation.
- Works well for ceramic tile.
- Works for MDO and ABS plywood.
- Blade can break with harder materials.
- Blade deflects to the side.
- 3 clean-for-Plexiglass jigsaw blades.
- 2 5/8” blade.
- 13 TPI.
Bosch’s clean-for-Plexiglass blade is designed for making straight, clean cuts in Plexiglass between 5/64” and 3/4” thick. Its ground and taper back teeth make smooth cuts, and its bi-metal construction provides durability.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read BOSCH T102BF jigsaw blade reviews.
Best Stainless Steel-Cutting Blades6
Pros & Cons
- Easily cuts 14 gauge stainless steel.
- Cuts stainless steel fast with few burs to file.
- Can cut laminate flooring.
- Somewhat expensive.
- Teeth wear quickly.
- 3 special-for-stainless steel jigsaw blades.
- 14 TPI.
- 3 1/4” T-Shank blade.
This fast-cutting, durable blade is made to cut 5/64” to 3/16” stainless steel and non-ferrous metals between 5/64” and 7/32” thick.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read BOSCH T118EHM3 jigsaw blade reviews.
Best for Laminate7
Pros & Cons
- Good control while cutting laminate.
- Works well for cutting wood flooring.
- Can chip laminate.
- 5 T- Shank jigsaw blades.
- 10 TPI.
- 4” blade.
- Down-pointing teeth for finish cuts.
The DeWalt down-cutting laminate blade has precision ground teeth for durability and smooth, cleaning cutting. Deeper gullets between the teeth allow for fast cuts.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read DEWALT DW3762H jigsaw blade reviews.
Best for Scroll Cuts and Tight Curves8
Pros & Cons
- Excellent for scrollwork with acrylic.
- Good for cutting hard turns.
- Doesn’t burn or score material.
- Creates a polished edge on acrylic.
- Blades tend to break.
- 5 scroll-cut T-Shank jigsaw blades.
- 2” blade.
- 18 TPI.
The Festool scroll-cut blade will make tight curves in softwood, hardwood, melamine, veneered plywood, chipboard, soft plastics, ABS, Plexiglass, hard plastics, and acrylic up to 1” thick. Its conical ground teeth provide for very smooth cuts. The durable blade is made of high carbon steel to hold up under heavy use.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read FESTOOL 486564 jigsaw blade reviews.
Jigsaw Blade Sets9
Pros & Cons
- Blades cut easily with good control.
- After much use, blades remain sharp.
- Not enough blade slots in case.
- Blades too short.
- Sliding tabs on case won’t stay closed.
- 14 assorted T-Shank jigsaw blades for wood and metal.
- 6, 10, 12, 18, and 32 TPI blades.
- 6 TPI and 10 TPI blades are 4” long.
- 18 TPI and 32 TPI blades are 3”.
Created for cutting wood, laminate and metal, these blades are of standard DeWalt quality: durable and cut fast. The only small flaw is that the cover of the case often won’t stay closed.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read DEWALT DW3742C jigsaw blades set Reviews.
Pros & Cons
- Sturdy case.
- Easy to see blades in case.
- Blades good for cutting Formica.
- Good metal-cutting blades.
- Blades are loose in case and rattle around.
- Case is hard to open.
- 18 assorted T-Shank jigsaw blades.
- Blades with 5 – 24 TPI.
- Blades between 3 1/4” and 5 1/4” long.
- 9 wood blades.
- 7 metal blades.
- 2 multi-purpose blades.
Packed in a sturdy case, 18 assorted blades are available for a wide variety of materials: metal, hard- and softwood, as well as different types of cuts. The metal blades are designed for fast cutting, and the scalpel teeth on the wood blades make for splinter-free cuts. The blades are all made of durable bi-metal.
Check out what other people who purchased this product think about it. Read BOSCH T18CHCL jigsaw blades set Reviews.
Jigsaw Blade Prices
Generally, diamond grit jigsaw blades are the most expensive, and high carbon steel blades are the cheapest and most commonly used by do-it-yourselfers. Blades are sold singly or in kits containing five to 100 blades. Prices for jigsaw blades run from $1 per blade to $100 for a five-pack.
Many jigsaw manufacturers also make jigsaw blades. Of all jigsaw blade manufacturers, Bosch makes the greatest variety of blades, including more specialty blades for various materials. Other leading blade manufacturers are DeWalt, Black & Decker, Festool, Hitachi, and Irwin.
Where to Buy Jigsaw Blades
Jigsaw blades can be purchased at local stores, but the best deals are found online, particularly at Amazon, Ebay, and Walmart.
Are all jigsaw blades universal/interchangeable?
No. Different jigsaws have blade clamps that accept only certain types of blades. Most jigsaws sold nowadays are equipped for no-tool blade changes with T-Shank blades, the most popular type of blades. U-Shank (Universal) blades are still sold but are quickly becoming obsolete. The “universal” name doesn’t mean these blades will work with any jigsaw. Some saws that accept T-Shank blades will also accept U-Shank blades that don’t have a hole for fastening with a screw. U-Shank blades with a hole will fit only saws designed for them. Bayonet or Hook-Shank blades, used mostly in old Porter Cable saws, are essentially obsolete. They can still be purchased but are hard to find.
How to choose a jigsaw blade?
- Determine what type(s) of blade shank fits your saw.
- Consider what material you need to cut.
- Decide what kind of cut you’ll be making—straight or curved, rough or clean, or plunge.
- Choose the right blade for your job. Bosch, DeWalt and other makers of specialty blades will print on the packaging the materials and cuts the blades are made for. To make a more precise choice of blades for certain jobs, read our detailed jigsaw blade buying guide.
How to change a jigsaw blade?
To replace the blade in a saw with a tool-less blade change system, simply press the blade clamp lever and remove the old blade. With the lever still depressed, insert a new blade between the roller guide with the teeth facing the front of the saw, then release the lever. Make sure to unplug your saw before you install a new blade, and don’t grab a hot blade with your bare fingers.
For saws without a no-tool blade change system, locate the screw that holds the blade in place, slightly loosen the screw with a screwdriver or Allen key, and remove the blade. Put in a new blade and tighten the screw.
Jigsaw blade bends—what to do?
- Make sure you’re not cutting faster than what the manufacturer recommends.
- Be sure you’re not forcing the blade through the material.
- Make sure you’re using the correct blade for the material and type of cut you’re making.
- Make sure the blade was installed properly, with the shank aligned between the roller guide.
- Make sure your blade is sharp.
- If your jigsaw is old, this might be the problem. Newer saws have roller guides to keep blades stable for accurate cutting. Older saws don’t have this feature, and this can cause blades to bend.
Why does my jigsaw blade keep falling out?
Make sure you’ve installed the right kind of blade. If your saw is made for no-tool blade changes, you need T-Shank. If your saw is for U-Shank blades with holes, make sure the set screw is in place and is tight. For either type of blade, ensure the blade is fully inserted in the clamp by applying a little pressure when installing it.
What jigsaw blade to use to cut a kitchen worktop?
Use a specialty blade with down-pointing teeth made specifically for laminate to get the cleanest cut in your worktop, such as Bosch T101BR.
What jigsaw blade to choose for plywood?
Use the same specialty worktop blade like you would use for laminate: with down-pointing teeth cutting on the downstroke, like Bosch T101BR.
What jigsaw blade to use to cut plastic?
You can use a specialty blade for plastic, a multi-purpose blade, or one that’s made for clean cuts in wood and laminate.
What jigsaw blade works for bamboo flooring?
Clean-for-wood blades work great for bamboo flooring.
What jigsaw blade works for ceramic tile?
Toothless carbide grit and diamond grit blades will cut ceramic tile and porcelain.