The great thing about Ryobi is that it's a brand that knows where it stands. These aren't professional-grade tools; they're geared toward homeowners and DIYers who don't need equipment designed for heavy daily use—and don't have $2,000 to spend on a wet tile saw. The Ryobi 7-inch wet tile saw is a case in point. At a little over $100, this saw does a decent job and is versatile enough for tile of many sizes and thickness. The low price also makes this saw an attractive alternative to renting a tile saw for a few days.
Rent or Buy a Wet Tile Saw?
If you're installing your own tile, you can probably squeak by with a snap tile cutter, but you'll end up with loads of broken tiles and more than enough frustration. Or, you can rent a tile saw. That's fine, except you'll need to spend some time learning how to use the tool—then there's the tile job—and the rental costs are adding up all the while. As an alternative, wouldn't it be nice to own a tile saw and take your time learning how to cut tile correctly and safely? Buying an economical saw also gives you the luxury of time to do your tiling project right instead of rushing it along. That's where a consumer-grade tile saw like the Ryobi 7-inch saw comes in.
Mostly the Basics, With a Few Extras
With this Ryobi wet tile saw, you're getting everything you need to start general tile-cutting and beveling right away. The saw comes with a 7-inch blade and includes a sliding base (with tile saws, your workpiece moves, not the blade). It also has a rip guide that allows you to position the tile at different angles. As for the "wet" aspect of the saw, you supply that by simply hooking up a standard garden hose.
One special feature of this saw is a devilishly simple spring-like device that Ryobi calls an "End-of-Cut Reminder." This slows down your cut at the end to minimize broken tiles. There's also bevel block that lets you scribe bevels into the tile edges.
Pumpless Flow System
The base-level Ryobi 7-Inch tile saw has what they term a Pumpless Flow System™. Tile needs a constant flow of water to keep the workpiece cool and to minimize debris. Some tile saws recirculate water by means of an internal pump; others supply fresh water from the tap. This saw does the latter, but you have the option of adding a pump.
It's debatable whether or not you want a pumpless tile saw. With pumpless saws, you get clean water but you need to be near a tap, or wherever you can hook up a garden hose. This pretty much ensures that you'll be cutting tile outside. But outside is a good place to cut tile anyway.
Tile saws with pumps free you from the faucet, but sediment is a constant concern. If you choose to add the optional pump to the Ryobi saw, its Clean Wave Wall™ feature helps to prevent sediment from junking up the pump while the saw is in use.
How Well Does It Work?
This budget tile saw works just fine. It generally runs smoothly, the water flow remains constant, and the motor is strong enough to handle ordinary tile jobs. The rip guide and bevel block snap firmly into place, and at the angles you want—without wiggling and readjusting. The Easy-Glide Table™ does glide less easily than one might expect. Consequently, your workpiece moves into the blade with a tiny bit of pull. But all in all, this Ryobi 7-inch wet tile saw is a decent, inexpensive product for DIY tilers.