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How to Get Stuck Wood Plug Out of a Hole Saw?

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Hole saws, as the name implies, help to create cut holes in woods. Unlike other hole-making tools like the drill bit, it can cut larger holes. Hole saw blades are in the form of a cup.

The shape allows it to make accurate holes as you do not have to battle with keeping your hands steady. This cup-like shape will usually see the wood plug cut out from the log stuck in it.

Wood plug stuck inside a hole saw is one of its biggest challenges, especially when you have to make several other holes. Many people fumble with the quick removal of these wood plugs from the hole saw. The plugs can fill up the saw space, which makes it difficult to come off.

How do you quickly remove these plugs so you can continue with your project? This is a pertinent question many woodworkers would love to know. If you’d love to know how you can remove the plugs stuck in your hole saw, and quickly too, sit back as we discuss some of the methods you can use to achieve this.

Ways to Remove Wood Plug From Hole Saw

There are different ways to remove wood plugs that may be stuck inside the hole saw after cutting out a hole in your wood. These methods vary in ease and speed, but they all get the job done. Make sure the saw is off and unplugged before trying out any of the methods below. Safety is paramount when dealing with power tools with sharp ends.

1. Using a Screwdriver

Using a Screwdriver
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This is by far the most common method out there for removing wood plugs. Hole saws have holes by the side of their cup-like blades that allow you to insert a screwdriver and push the wood plug out. The good thing is that most new model hole saws have these holes.

Insert the end of the screwdriver into the hole and under the wood plug. Apply downward pressure to push the plug out. Change the holes and angles to get the wood plug out. While this method works, it is hardly the best out there as its effectiveness reduces the tighter the wood plug is inside the hole saw. It is also only possible for hole saws with holes on the sides.

You’ll need a screwdriver with a long handle, so a small pressure applied can exert a bigger pressure on the wood plug inside the hole saw.

2. Drive a Screw Through the Wood Plug

Drive a Screw Through the Wood Plug
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Here is another method to remove a wood plug stuck inside the hole saw. This method works when cutting holes into woods with a small width. Mark the center and the circumference of the cut area and then drive in a screw at the center of the radius to the circumference.

Positioning the screw in the right place will ensure you do not obstruct the center drill or the blades cutting the circumference.

You can then cut the hole as you normally would. After cutting out the piece, use a plier to grab the end of the screw protruding from the other end. Pull the screw to remove the wood plug out of the hole saw. It will be difficult to replicate this method for thicker woods because of the screw attached.

Alternatively, you can cut the hole as you would at first and then drive a screw into the wood plug stuck inside the hole saw. Two things will happen when you do this, the wood would splinter into two, allowing you to easily take out the pieces, or you’ll get a solid grip and can pull the wood plug out by holding on to the screw.

3. Use a Hole Saw Plug Extractor

Use a Hole Saw Plug Extractor
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Instead of utilizing alternatives to remove wood plugs stuck in your hole saw, you can use a tool dedicated to removing wood plugs. This tool is called a hole saw plug extractor, and it removes plugs easily.

Unscrew the arbor and insert the hole saw plug extractor with the open end facing up. Put the prongs into the openings on the side of the saw and behind the plug. Grip the no-slip handle and pull the prongs to push the plug out. It is easy and fast. You can use it for hole saws with 4″ diameter and below.

4. Lubricate the Inside of the Saw

Lubricate the Inside of the Saw
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Lubricating the open end of the saw will reduce friction and prevent it from getting stuck. Apply lubricants like WD-40 to the inside of the saw before you start cutting. This way, the plug will be easy to slide out from the hole saw.

Lubricating is a sleek way of overcoming issues from wood plugs stuck in the saw. Grease Make it possible to even remove the plug by hand.

5. Remove the Arbor And Push Plug

Remove the Arbor and Push Plug
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You can remove the arbor thereby separating it from the hole saw and giving you access to work on the plug stuck inside. After separation, use a screwdriver to poke the plug from the opening below. Push the plug out.

This method is effective when you can easily detach the arbor from the hole saw. Hole saws that are harder to detach will make this method annoying and slow.

6. Create a Wider Kerf

Create a Wider Kerf
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The methods listed above are corrective measures, but you can be proactive and prevent the wood from getting stuck in the first place. Shaking the saw while cutting it will create a kerf that is wide, so the plug is not tight inside the saw.

When the wood is loose, it cannot get stuck in the hole saw. This preventive method will save you all the stress of removing the wood stuck inside the plug.

7. Precautions to Take When Using a Hole Saw

Using a hole saw can cause some damage if not used properly. There are things you can do that will ensure you’re safe and you continue making perfectly round holes.

1. Goggles

Wearing eye gear while cutting is essential for the safety of your eyes. Making the hole will see chips and dust flying around, and the eye gear will cover the eye.

2. Fasten The Piece

Using clippers, fasten the wood tightly, so it doesn’t shake or move when cutting.

3. Allow Dust to Clear Out

Allowing the dust to clear out will help you see the cut clearly and avoid clogging the cutting area. To do this, cut by feeding in the saw and removing it at intervals.

4. Avoid Splintering

The wood can break into two when sawing without proper care. Cut halfway from one side and complete the cut from the other side. This will prevent it from breaking.


Do you have wood stuck in your hole saw after creating a hole? There are ways to get this wood out without stressing. These methods vary based on ease of use and speed. People love a fast method, something that can be done in seconds.