Oscillating Tool Tips and Tricks: (That Actually Works)

Oscillating tools are multi-function tools. Many people call them as multi-tools also. Though they are a very recent addition, they are incredibly versatile in the power tool market and the first choice now. Also, It can boost your working capability when you know every oscillating tool tips and tricks.

These multi-tools work basically with a side-to-side mechanism. The oscillation is very minute, having around 3 degrees. It works extremely fast. It can stroke 20,000 per minute.

These tools use small and rapid vibrations in order to power an assortment. To cut they have grind, scrape, saw, and sand. Today, I’m here with some oscillating tool tips and tricks that will help you to understand these tools and increase your productivity. 

Oscillating Tool Tips and Tricks

But are you in confusion in choosing your oscillating tools? Are not sure that which oscillating tools you need to perform your task. Then you must figure out first what features they contain. Let’s check out the detail features of the oscillating tools.

Features of Oscillating Tool Accessories

Oscillating machines contain many different components. If you have a sound knowledge of these, your purchasing process can be smoother. This Knowledge also plays an important role in the effective and efficient use of the tools.


Blades are the most important part of oscillating tools. It is the main working force oscillating tools. But before purchasing these tools, it is important to know about these blades types and whether they are useful for you. You should also consider to check out whether they are available on the market now.

1. Round Blades

  • Round blades are the best for a long and linear cut.
  • They can give you more precise cuts.

2. Straight blades

  • Straight blades are the best for plunge cuts.

3. Bi-Metal Cutting Blades

  • Bi-metal cutting blades work better in metal cutting.
  • You can use it to cut through metal.
  • It is also perfect for cutting through rust.

4. Blades for Grout Removal

  • Carbide blades are the best in small grout removals.
  • Diamond blades can cut three times.
  • They are best for larger grout removals.

5. Scraper Blades

  • Scraper blades are perfect to dig caulk out of joints.
  • You can find them in different styles.
  • The styles include flexible or stiff, blunt or sharp, straight or offset.

6. Extra Wide Blades

  • The extra wide blades are perfect for cutting around pipes.
  • They are more versatile than the narrow blade.
  • They never slip off on curved surfaces.

Blade Adapters

Blade adapters help to fit the blades from one brand to another brand. They are also more versatile than narrow blade as well they never slip off on curved surfaces.

Power Source

The power source can be called the heart of oscillating tool accessories. It provides the electricity. On oscillating tool, this electricity is supplied through a wired connection. Cordless oscillating tools are powered by the battery. In some cases, charging facilities are also available for these battery run cordless oscillating tools.

But these battery run tools are not as powerful as electric run tools. They also require regular charging. but they are considerably lighter in weight as well as have unmatched portability.


The motor is the main element of all oscillating tools. It is such an element component that transforms the electricity into motion.

The motors produce power mainly and this power is measured in Watts. Motors that used in corded multi-tools are called AC motors (Also known as series or universal motors). Generally, they have an input power between 180 and 250 watts.


The switch let the tools to get electricity from the power source. It allows electricity to flow thoroughly to the tools.

Most of the oscillating tools are designed with a sliding switch. You have to push forward his switch to activate the tool. And you must slide back to its previous position to disengage the machine.


This component of tools is also known as a gearbox. It dictates the speed range (oscillations per minute or OPM ). The oscillating tools generally produce OPM between 11000 and 21000. In every oscillation tools, the blade moves only about 3°. This slow-moving allows you to have precise work beyond kick-back.

Blade Clamp

This component is no doubt most important as it secures blades of the oscillating tools in place. It plays the vital safety role at the time of working with the oscillating tools. In most of the oscillating tools, it is in a circular row or hex drive bolt shape.

Speed Control Dial

This is a small wheel on the top of the oscillating tool. It let you have a preset a speed selection so that you can gain more control over your tools.


This component of multi-tools basically protects the internal components. Usually, the oscillating tools have either a jam pot housing or clam shell housing.

Clam shell housing is such a housing that is packed in two plastic halves. These halves are fixed together. Jam-pot housing is such housing that the internal components are inserted into a lid. Then it is screwed down for sealing.


The handle is the very important component of the oscillating tools. It helps to hold the tools in one or two hands. Generally, the oscillating tools contain a barrel grip handle. This handle gives you an unrivaled control over these tools so that you can use them in many different applications.

Dust Extraction Port

The dust extraction let to have the connection of the dust extraction system as well as a vacuum cleaner) for controlling the removal of waste materials.

Others Accessories of Oscillating Tools

You will also find different types of oscillating accessories available in the hardware and electronic shops. Every oscillating accessory has it’s own characteristics, capabilities, and style.

But some of the accessories become extremely hot after being used. So, you should wear gloves when you are going to remove them. Always make that you have disconnected the tool from the power source before changing accessories.

Here, I have brought out mainly the top most important oscillating accessories that you may have. They will help a lot at the time of your necessity.

Sawing Blades

Saw blades of oscillating tools are best for cutting many hard elements including plastics, plasterboard, wood, fiberglass, putty, aluminum, sheet metal and copper up to 1 mm thick.

These capabilities of saw blades depend on kinds of steel used for making the blade (high carbon steel, high-speed steel, or bi-metal). These blades are available in segment, circular, and plunge-cutting designs.

Scraping Blades

These blades are smooth, thin and angled pieces of metal. You can use it remove silicone, stickers, carpet, and adhesives ( including tile adhesives ). But if they collect too much adhesive for using the long time you can put some petroleum jelly on them.

Diamond Saw Blade

These types of saw blades are designed with diamond fragments. So, they are able to remove mortar and grout. They can occasionally cut hard materials (e.g. soft ceramic tiles). The Oscillating tools having a diamond saw blade can create far less dust than the angle grinder. But when they are used for a long period of time, they may wear down quickly.

diamond saw blade: diamond saw blades for stone

To have the rough sanding of stone, wood, tile adhesives concrete, and filler, the carbide rasps are available to purchase. You will find them in two main styles; triangular and finger-shaped.

You can use a wire brush for cleaning a diamond coated or carbide saw blade and rasp after using.

Which Oscillating Tools you should buy?

It is a little bit difficult to say which oscillating tools are the best to buy. Actually, every person has their own preference. You have to consider some specific needs also.

As for example, I can say some people purchase as well as use it only on some occasion. On the other hand, some use them frequently. Especially the DIY addicted people use them in a number of situations based on their needs.

Therefore, I strongly recommend considering the features of these multi-tools that which feature you need actually. You can also take into consideration the brand name. For you, I have up here the name of some important brands.

The Most Trusted Brands of Oscillating Tools

  1. Bosch
  2. DeWalt
  3. Makita
  4. Genesis
  5. Stanley
  6. Black & Decker  

How to use Oscillating Tools?

The most important part of the oscillating tools is their proper using. Here I am going to mention some exclusive and secret tips and tricks based on their working are. Let’s check out:

Trimming Door Casings

When a new floor of your home is installed, then it is needed to trim the bottom of your door casings. But you can do this job easily with the use of the oscillating tools.

  • Pick up a piece of your new floor. Then place it on the sub-floor which is next to the casing.
  • Attach a wood blade of flush cutting with your multi-tool.
  • Hold the blade flat against the floor and sink straight through the casing.
  • Then remove the wastage pieces of wood.
  • The new floor will slide perfectly under the casing.

Cut Plumbing Pipes

The oscillating tools can cut a range of materials; such as metal pipes, plastic & copper.

Detailed Wood Sanding

You will find a range of sand attachments. They are available for almost every type of oscillating tools.  These are used primarily to:

  • Smooth Wood or Wood Fillers
  • Clear Topcoat Finishes

These accessories also can accept hook or loop abrasives. This makes it easier to make change the sandpaper if it needs any replacement.

These tools are highly compact. Their blades can adjust any angles that you need. That means you can work at awkward spaces as well as tight angles, including in ceilings, under floors, inside of cabinets and behind walls with these tools.

Removing Paint

Removing paint is such a boring task that actually nobody enjoys. These tools will make this boring task easy for you. Just follow these steps:

  • Attach a scraper blade to your tool. This will help you to remove the paint much easier.
  • Switch to the sanding pad when it is removed.
  • Start with a coarse abrasive. Then go to progress until you reach your desired smoothness.

Salvaging Room Mouldings

To do wood moldings without causing any damage is pretty much impossible still now. But it is possible if you have oscillating tool. To do it, just install a fine-tooth metal-cutting blade with your multi-tool., This will allow you to slice finely many things, including:

  • Caulking
  • Dried Paint
  • Nail Finishing’s
  • lightbulb-o
    Old Caulking
  • lightbulb-o
    Room Trim
  • lightbulb-o
    Shoe Moulding
  • lightbulb-o
    Window/Door Casings

Cut Drywall Openings

With these tools, you can have cut square and rectangular holes accurately. It works in even the drywall of your ceilings and walls. Here's how...

  • These tools can handle a number of situations like:
  • Installing electrical boxes on wall outlets.
  • Ceiling boxes for fans and lights.
  • Patching damaged sections of your ceilings and walls.

Eliminate Tile Grout

You can remove any type tile grout. Whether it is cracked, old, or stained, these acts properly. Just attach the carbide grout removal blade and grind out unwanted grout of your floor as well as wall tiles.

Grind Away Mortar

You can easily remove thin and hard set mortar from your sub-floor. Just attach a triangular carbide grit rasp with the tool and apply it to grind away the mortar.

Things to Consider

Follow the following tips for using oscillating tools. These tips will increase your efficiency to work with multi-tools as well as will keep you safe.

  • Move the tool gently from side to side.
  • Give uniform forward pressure for ensuring optimum working performance.
  • Perform Plunge cuts only in soft materials (wood and plasterboard).
  • Always check the work for screws and nails.
  • Ensure the accessory you equip is capable of cutting the materials.
  • Always apply gently for sanding. Give Uniform pressure to sanding plate.
  • If you use a sanding sheet for metal, you should not use it again on other surfaces.
  • Select a high oscillation rate in scraping.

Bottom Line

It is mentioning that the oscillating tools can perform a variety of tasks. It can greatly help you in your DIY also. So, you can easily consider one of these oscillating tools to have.

But one thing, as they are mainly run electricity, so don’t forget to take essential safety measure before starting with them. You should also wear hand glove to work with them. Hope oscillating tool tips and tricks will help you increase your productivity.

John Bryan

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