A toe kick saw, known also as a toe space saw or flush cut, is a specialized saw used to cut subfloor material when replacing the kitchen flooring, without having to move the cabinets. The best toe kick saw will cut very close to walls, will be easy to use, and will come with a carrying case.
Traditionally, when replacing flooring, structures that are directly on top of the floor need to be removed. This is done in order to cleanly remove all of the flooring and subfloor material. Cabinets either have to be pulled out, or the material has to be painstakingly hammered, and meticulously chiseled away (Source).
Toe kick saws change that entirely. With a toe kick saw, you are able to cut and remove the flooring and subfloor material cleanly and easily, right up to the edge of the cabinets, without having to move the cabinets themselves (Source).
The quality, price, and feature-set of toe kick saws vary widely. Before buying a toe kick saw, consider the price, weight, and warranty. It’s also important to consider the supported blade types.
In this review, we will take a thorough look at the top toe kick saws. Such saws will easily remove flooring material, whether you are a construction professional or a homeowner who wants to more easily replace their kitchen flooring.
What Is A Toe Kick Saw Used For?
Table of Contents
- 1 What Is A Toe Kick Saw Used For?
- 2 Can a Toe Kick Saw Cut Tile?
- 3 How Much Do Toe-Kick Saws Cost?
- 4 Comparing the Top 5 Models
- 5 1. Crain 775 Toe-Kick Saw – Best Time Saving Saw
- 6 2. Dremel US40-03 Ultra-Saw – Most Versatile Saw
- 7 3. Chicago Electric Heavy Duty Toe-Kick Saw – Best Adjustable Saw
- 8 4. Ironton Toe-Kick Saw – Best Midrange Saw
- 9 5. Gino Development TruePower Blade Toe-Kick Saw – Most Affordable Toe-Kick Saw
- 10 Toe-Kick Saw Brands
- 11 Factors to Consider Before Buying a Toe-Kick Saw
- 12 How to Use Toe-Kick Saw
- 13 Ready to Get a Toe-Kick Saw?
A toe kick saw is used to cut a subfloor, normally in the kitchen, without having to remove the cabinets. This tool gets under the toe-kick and cuts the floor flush with the cabinet’s base. One can also use such a saw to trim door jambs or casings when installing tile floors.
Can a Toe Kick Saw Cut Tile?
Most toe kick saws will be able to cut tile but will often require you to buy a special blade. For example, The Crain 775 toe kick saw will require you to buy the No. 789 Toe-kick Saw Diamond Blade, which is ideal for cutting tile or grout.
How Much Do Toe-Kick Saws Cost?
What you can expect to pay for a toe-kick saw largely depends on what you expect in the tool. Depending on the brand, toe kick saws cost between $75 and $320. This price range is much lower than other saws intended for special cutting tasks, like the best lapidary trim saws.
Comparing the Top 5 Models
|Crain 775 Toe-Kick Saw|
|Dremel US40-03 Ultra-Saw|
|Chicago Electric Heavy Duty Toe-Kick Saw|
|Ironton 3 3/8in. Toe-Kick Saw|
|Gino Development 01-0820 TruePower Blade Toe-Kick Saw|
The Best Toe Kick Saws: Our Top 5 Picks
1. Crain 775 Toe-Kick Saw – Best Time Saving Saw
A clutch mechanism will disengage so that kickback is reduced when cutting around curves or pulling out the blade backward.
Other blades can be ordered to cut through tile or grout if your project requires it. The saw will cut ¾ inches deep. The toe kick height can be anywhere from 3 ½ to 4 inches.
2. Dremel US40-03 Ultra-Saw – Most Versatile Saw
While it works great as a toe-kick saw, it is also capable of grinding, making long cuts, and prepping surfaces.
This is also the fastest motor on our list which means that chips are nearly altogether eliminated due to its fast, clean cut.
At only 4.63 pounds, the Dremel Ultra-Saw is easy to transport and handle.
The metal foot and guard resists, and a strong safety guard that covers the turning blade gives peace of mind.
3. Chicago Electric Heavy Duty Toe-Kick Saw – Best Adjustable Saw
While other saws don’t allow you to move to change the cutting depth, this heavy-duty toe-kick saw by Chicago Electric comes with four cutting depth positions: ¼ inch, 3/8 inch, 5/8 inch, and ¾ inch. The adjustability to this saw gives you more exact cuts.
This saw is safe to use as well with a safety button on the trigger switch and a dual handle to help you stay in control.
4. Ironton Toe-Kick Saw – Best Midrange Saw
It’s 6.8 Amp, 110V motor is powerful enough to cut through whatever you throw its way at 4,500 RPM. The tips of the blade are carbide-tipped for precise cutting up to 3/4inch deep.
The Ironton saw also comes with a wrench and a carbon brush set to keep your tool running smoothly. It is ideal for removing the old subfloor next to walls and baseboards.
5. Gino Development TruePower Blade Toe-Kick Saw – Most Affordable Toe-Kick Saw
The blades on this saw are carbide tipped, so cutting is relatively easy. While this saw is extremely affordable, it is best used for rare, one time jobs and will not hold up like its more expensive counterparts.
That being said, if you have a one time home project, this toe-kick saw is ideal. It is not recommended for extended use, such as by those working daily in the floor installment field.
Toe-Kick Saw Brands
As with all products, the brand says a lot about what you’re willing to pay. The quality of the product as a whole varies depending on whether or not the brand specializes in the product.
There are definitely brands in the toe-kick-saw industry that stand out above others.
As you shop for your saw, it is best to know what each brand has to offer by understanding what makes them stand out.
Below we’ve broken down a few of the listed brands to help you understand what makes each one unique.
Crain tools are manufactured in the U.S. They specialize in various professional flooring tools, including toe-kick saws. They also make carpet tools, vinyl flooring tools, wood floor tools, undercut saws, and scraper and stripper machines.
You could say they’re experts in floor covering. Plus, they continue to lead the way in the floor covering industry.
If you’re looking to do extensive work on floors, this is the place to find all that you need to get the job done.
They don’t sell direct, but instead, have a wide variety of distributors across the U.S. Many of their products, including their toe-kick saw, are sold on Amazon.
Dremel tools were founded in Wisconsin in 1932 by A.J. Dremel. He arrived in the U.S. in 1906 and soon began inventing a wide variety of products and tools that we use down to this day.
They have been in business for over 85 years and strive to give their customers the best quality of tools. Dremel is known for continually innovating new designs to improve the performance and efficiency of their products.
Chicago Electric is a family-owned company that was founded in 1910. They offer a wide variety of products in control technology for the industry.
Although they specialize in automation systems and products, their power tools are among some of the top-rated.
Ironton is an exclusive brand by Northern Tool + Equipment. They promise that their products will be of high quality while still affordable.
This company sells power tools from hand tools to automotive tools ad anything in between.
Factors to Consider Before Buying a Toe-Kick Saw
There are many factors to take into consideration before spending your hard-earned money on a toe-kick saw. That’s why understanding what those factors are and how they will affect your needs is paramount. That’s why we’re going to explore a few of the factors you need to consider before buying a toe-kick saw.
Dimensions & Weight
For the most part, toe-kick saws won’t be overly heavy. All in all, transporting them in relatively easy. The weight and dimensions come into play when you consider what your own physical abilities are.
The heavy saws, while often more durable, are hard to run over long periods of time. If are buying this tool for a home project and you aren’t comfortable with heavy lifting, a lighter, smaller saw will be your best bet.
On the other hand, if you are a contractor that is used to lifting and working with heavy tools, then you will want to consider the more durable, heavy-duty options.
While most of the toe-kick saws on our list have a speed of about 4,500 RPM, it is interesting to note that the Dremel Ultra-Saw is much faster at 13,000 RPM. A faster spinning blade with likely give you cleaner cuts, however, it won’t last as long as the heavier, slower bladed saws.
Experts recommend that your saw will only need to cut ¾ inch deep to get through the underboard or flooring that you need to remove.
Remember that this saw is not built to cut lumber. Rather it is designed to help you get flooring out from under cabinets and walls that would otherwise be impossible to cut. It is very handy when working around doors too, but it cannot be used to remove door casings. For that job, you’ll need the best jamb saw to make a neat cut.
Depending on your project you may want to opt for an adjustable blade. However, the fixed blades that cut at ¾ inch should typically do the job fine.
The quality of your toe-kick saw will usually be determined by how much you pay for the tool. As noted above, the cheapest saw on our list is also the one that will give out the fastest. That’s usually because they use cheaper, weaker materials to build them, like plastic rather than steel.
If you’re looking for a saw that lasts years on end, then be prepared to pay a bit more. It is also recommended that you search for brands that back their tools with a warranty.
How to Use Toe-Kick Saw
Regardless of which toe-kick saw you choose to purchase, it’s important that you learn to use it correctly before you start it up. When used correctly, the toe-kick saw will do all the hard work for you, making finishing your project fast and easy.
Here are some simple step-by-step instructions that show just how easy using a toe-kick saw is.
- Position the Blade
Position the blade under the toe-kick by inserting it at a 45-degree angle. Then the rest of the unit will be able to sit on the floor.
Make sure the saw has a flat surface to glide over. Try to avoid running it over uneven surfaces.
- Plug in the Cord
- Place Your Hands on the Tool
Your left hand should grip the forward part and your right and will grip the rear handle. The handle your right hand is on is closest to the trigger. This way your right thumb will be near the safety button.
- Start the Motor
Most models will require that you hold the safety button down while at the same time holding the trigger. As soon as the motor starts up you can release the safety button.
Then you will be able to tilt the saw into the material you are cutting until it reaches your desired depth.
- Complete Your Cut
Slowing push the saw forward as you cut through the flooring. If you hear grinding, simply tilt the blade back to the left. It means that the blade has come into contact with concrete.
- Remove the Saw
As you reach the end of your cut, you will need to release the trigger. After the blade stops moving you can let go of the saw while you unplug it from the power source. Then remove the saw.
Ready to Get a Toe-Kick Saw?
Now that you know what some of the best toe-kick saws on the market are, continuing to do your research to find which option is best for you.
Keep in mind how often you plan on using it as well as your budget. There are several options out there for affordable yet durable toe-kick saws. It’s up to you which one is best for your projects.