A few bucks and a couple hours keeps you from buying a new saw

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Review by sras posted 12-15-2021 06:47 PM 1518 views 1 time favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
A few bucks and a couple hours keeps you from buying a new saw No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

The switch on my miter saw had completely failed. After I tried inspection and a good cleaning I got it to work for another few hours but then it was back to failure. Time for a new switch.

There are two options for repairing your switch – you can either buy a replacement switch or a switch kit. If you choose to go with the switch only be sure you have an exact match or be prepared to have to do some work to make it fit. (UPDATE: I went back on Amazon and it does look like one could find replacement switches with matching shape and wiring mounts. Not sure about the wiring diagram or mechanism operation. Best guess is that exact replacement switches are available)

I bought the switch kit at $65 (supplied by DeWalt) instead of the switch by itself at $20-25 with shipping. My reasoning at the time was I could get the kit now and the switch would take a week to get here. Here’s a shot of the kit:

It turns out that the kit has a different switch that may or may not fit in the old housing – I’m guessing that it will not fit. Also the wiring is completely different. If anyone wants to buy the switch make sure it is an exact match.

A good reminder at this point – unplug your saw before you start.

Here’s the old handle opened up (sorry the camera focused on the wrong surface)

The wiring difference is that the 2 black wires are now on the right side and the red & yellow wires are on the left.

Here’s the handle removed.

A couple of points are worth mentioning now.

1. Keep all fasteners. The kit had a few new screws but most need to be reused.

2. You can see a hole in the aluminum just above the red wire. The screw that goes there has a fine thread. When I re-assembled the handle that screw stripped the aluminum. I had to dig around in my screw stash to find a a coarse thread replacement

A couple other tweaks were needed.

First – on the left side of this pic you can see where I had to open up the detail to accept the rubber strain relief molding on my power cord. Looks like the newer ones don’t have a strain relief anymore :(

Second – My old handle had a screwed down cable clamp. The replacement plastic had screw bosses to mount it. But the new top half uses a couple plastic tabs to hold the cable in place (new pic below). I had to break them off. You can see the remnants or the right side of the pic. I twisted them off with a pair of pliers.

One final note: the black handle in the first picture did not fit. It was just a bit too short. I might have been able to make it work by warming up the black handle or a bit of filing. I found out that the original black handle fit fine.

The whole process took about 2 hours.

If you have any questions I’ll try to answer them.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View sras's profile


6697 posts in 4584 days

15 comments so far

View Desert_Woodworker's profile


9793 posts in 2669 days

#1 posted 12-15-2021 07:30 PM

+1 FANTASTIC Very informative…

-- Desert_Woodworker

View sras's profile


6697 posts in 4584 days

#2 posted 12-15-2021 07:31 PM

Thanks DW!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View lew's profile


13533 posts in 5210 days

#3 posted 12-15-2021 08:31 PM

Thanks, Steve, for the info. I think it isn’t just DeWalt that can’t provide exact replacements.

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View sras's profile


6697 posts in 4584 days

#4 posted 12-15-2021 08:35 PM

I’m pretty sure it’s an industry standard :)

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View HerringImpaired's profile


118 posts in 1164 days

#5 posted 12-15-2021 09:00 PM

That’s my saw! Haven’t had any issues, but good to know it is repairable….

-- "My greatest fear is that upon my demise, my wife will sell my tools for what I said I paid for them."

View LittleBlackDuck's profile


9454 posts in 2275 days

#6 posted 12-15-2021 10:58 PM

Good review sras...

If my Kapex switch bums out I might have to PM you… however, the yellow might clash with the green.

For other DeWalt owner/viewers info… is it a DeWalt kit or aftermarket?

-- If your first cut is too short... Take the second cut from the longer end... LBD

View sras's profile


6697 posts in 4584 days

#7 posted 12-15-2021 11:05 PM

Thanks LBD,

The kit is supplied by DeWalt. I bought it from a local DeWalt service center.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View Peteybadboy's profile


4830 posts in 3404 days

#8 posted 12-16-2021 10:43 AM


Thanks for posting. I hope not to have to replace mine, good to know all the info you provided!

-- Petey

View dbhost's profile


5906 posts in 4687 days

#9 posted 12-16-2021 12:44 PM

Good save. Far too many would just dump the saw on the curb and start over!

Pretty sure when the switch on my Chicago Electric dies, the thing goes to the recyclers…

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View Dusty56's profile


11868 posts in 5143 days

#10 posted 12-20-2021 02:34 AM

Very informative and great pictures as well. Thank you : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View robscastle's profile


8542 posts in 3659 days

#11 posted 12-28-2021 07:00 PM

I have repaired De Walt tools on many occasions, mainly broken spot welds on interconnecting wires and short wires that break from vibration during use.
The switch mech and most other brands of tools get sawdust in then and cause problems, the air compressor is a first line repair tool when fault finding initially.
A shot of air in the brush vents or switch mech can localise problems even before picking up another driver.

I should document them here also, to allow the transfer of knowledge as prompted by sras!

-- Regards Rob

View sras's profile


6697 posts in 4584 days

#12 posted 12-30-2021 04:28 PM

Good points Rob! I’ll add it to the intro.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View jeffswildwood's profile


5132 posts in 3432 days

#13 posted 12-31-2021 12:48 PM

I have a dead DeWalt ROS. I’ve opened it up and cleaned it, which got it going for a short time, but it quickly failed. Same issue, the switch. I wonder if a switch kit is available for it also.

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way that says "I meant to do that".

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2938 posts in 4377 days

#14 posted 01-03-2022 01:14 AM

I have a dead DeWalt ROS. I ve opened it up and cleaned it, which got it going for a short time, but it quickly failed. Same issue, the switch. I wonder if a switch kit is available for it also.

- jeffswildwood

I had a problem with my DeWalt ROS also. It came on at night and sanded a hole in my bench. I came in the shop in the morning and it was still running. I have since trashed that sander. I had to replace a stuck closed switch on my Bosch miter saw so when I received a replacement switch for it I wrapped it with saran wrap to keep the dust out of it and it has now been running for three years. No problems. Switches seem to be the weakest link in all powered equipment and tools.

-- No PHD just a DD214 Lubbock Texas

View sras's profile


6697 posts in 4584 days

#15 posted 01-03-2022 04:17 PM

Jeff – I did a quick search on Amazon and found several replacement switches offered. Not sure if they work for your model.

Jim – That is really scary that a tool could turn on like that. If you had been gone traveling that could have been awful!

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

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