DIY Network

How to Adjust a Table Saw

The table saw is one of the most commonly used -- and misused -- tools in a workshop. Here's how to align a table saw so cuts are always made safely and correctly.

More in Home Improvement

  • Time

    1 hour

  • Price Range

    $1 - $50

  • Difficulty



Step 1: Prepare the Machine

Unplug the machine.

Clean all sawdust from the machine. An air compressor is recommended for a thorough cleaning job.

clean all sawdust from machine

Step 2: Adjust the Blade and Remove the Throat Plate

Adjust the blade to its highest point.

Use a screwdriver to loosen the screws on the throat plate. Remove the throat plate.

adjust blade and remove throat plate

Step 3: Align the Blade

Use a combination square to make sure the blade is perfectly perpendicular to the table. To do that, move the square to the front of the blade, and align it with one tooth (Image 1).

Move the same tooth to the rear of the table, and make sure the distance is the same at the rear of the table (Image 2).

Step 4: Replace the Throat Plate and Align the Fence

Replace the throat plate, and tighten its screws in place.
Align the fence parallel to the blade by loosening the setscrews. Slide the fence into position, aligning it with the table's miter slot. Secure the fence by tightening the setscrews.

Use these steps every six months -- or anytime the saw isn't working properly.