Reciprocating Saw vs. Oscillating Saw | What is the better choice?

Reciprocating Saw vs. Oscillating Saw

One dealing with construction needs to upgrade the tool and equipment. Indeed, with the evolving technology, highly functioning tools are replacing their old counterparts. Therefore, it is essential to renew your gadgets continuously. Many people are confused when deciding between Reciprocating Saw vs. Oscillating Saw for using against different materials. If you are a construction contractor, this comparison will provide you with the right guide to buying the next saw. 

Defining Reciprocating and Oscillating Saw

Before digging into the comparison, let’s discover these new terms. The reciprocating saw is a rifle-shaped power tool with a blade installed at a distal end. Its saw blade moves back and forth to cut the material. Overall it is a competent tool for executing the construction project. 

On the other hand, an oscillating saw is a multi-purpose tool. It houses multiple tools at its base, which are used to grind, cut, polish, saw, and sand. Moreover, it is relatively easy to handle and most commonly used in a professional setting. 

The Ultimate Comparison

These two professional tools offer unmatched features and applications. Let’s explore what these salient characteristics distinguish them from one another. 


In terms of practicality, both offer heavy-duty applications. The reciprocating saw can handle challenging construction projects. However, strength comes at the expense of heaviness. The reciprocating saw is relatively bulky than the oscillating saw. A user should use both of his hands to get a straight cut. Moreover, the user must balance it by placing one hand on the distal edge and the other on its rear grip. 

On the contrary, the oscillating saw is easy to use, even with one hand. Its weight mostly depends on the type of tool attached to its base. Moreover, it is easy to rotate and slide on the surface. 

Sustainaibility and Strength

These two tools also differ when it comes to durability. The oscillating saw is relatively fragile and has a short working span. Mostly the equipment comes with a 5-year warranty. On the contrary, the reciprocating saw sustained for a more extended period. It can run efficiently for decades. Only you need to change the broken reciprocating saw blade

Desirable Degree of Versatility

In terms of versatility, the reciprocating saw offers distinct functions. Whether you want finely cut metal strips or a highly-dense wooden log, it is a perfect tool for cutting. It comes with unique blade shapes that allow you to acquire different cutting shapes and tactics. 

On the other hand, the oscillating saw is multi-purpose equipment. You can add different tools to the same cutting instrument. For instance, you can use it for sanding or polishing the rough surface, cutting different materials, or even grinding the mortar. 

Buying cost

Similarly, you can find a grave difference in their buying cost. If you intend to buy an oscillating saw, its price can vary from $70 to $160. On the contrary, the reciprocating saw can cost up to $200 to $250. 

What to Choose?

The reciprocating and oscillating saw has distinctive features and differences. However, when it comes to practicality, you should consider all essential features. Buy the tool based on the task you want to perform with its help. For instance, an oscillating saw must be your top priority if you intend to smooth a rough wooden surface. If you are doing a construction project, such as framing the door, consider the reciprocating saw for this task. 

The oscillating saw is easy to use when it comes to manual handling. You can easily glide it over any surface, even with a single hand. Moreover, consider buying the reciprocating saw if you intend to make an intricate cut. You can use a reciprocating saw for straight cuts.

Final Thoughts

Whether you choose a reciprocating or oscillating saw, you must handle the tool carefully. The proper technique and careful handling can help you with either the cutting or glazing job. Both tools are equally versatile and helpful in executing all heavy-duty tasks. After deciding on the tool, follow the instructions correctly before using it. 

Matt Hardy

Hi, this is Matt and I've been working in construction for over 10 years. I'm a big fan of power tools and I love nothing more than testing and reviewing them to help others make informed purchasing decisions.