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Posted 08/24/2023 by BSPTOOLS

Concrete Demolition Demystified: Cutting Techniques with an Angle Grinder

Concrete Demolition Demystified: Cutting Techniques with an Angle Grinder

Concrete cutting is a common task in construction and DIY projects, often requiring precision and proper technique. One tool that has proven to be quite effective for this purpose is the angle grinder. With its versatile capabilities and range of cutting discs available, an angle grinder can make cutting through concrete a manageable task. In this guide, we'll walk you through the step-by-step process of cutting concrete with an angle grinder, highlighting the necessary tools, safety precautions, and tips for a successful outcome.


Tools and Materials You'll Need

Before you embark on the concrete cutting journey, gather the necessary tools and materials to ensure a smooth process. Here's what you'll need:


Angle Grinder: Choose a high-quality angle grinder with a powerful motor and a compatible disc size. Common disc sizes for concrete cutting are 4.5 inches and 7 inches.


Diamond Cutting Disc: Opt for a diamond cutting disc specifically designed for concrete cutting. Diamond discs are known for their durability and effectiveness in cutting through tough materials like concrete.


Safety Gear: Prioritize safety by wearing safety glasses, ear protection, a dust mask, and work gloves. Concrete cutting generates dust and debris, which can be harmful if not properly protected against.


Measuring Tools: Use a tape measure and a pencil to mark the cutting lines accurately on the concrete surface.


Chalk Line or Laser Level: For longer and straighter cuts, a chalk line or laser level will help you create a guide line to follow.


Clamps or Vice Grips: These tools are useful for securing the concrete piece in place while you cut it.


Extension Cord: If your angle grinder doesn't have a long power cord, you may need an extension cord to provide enough reach to your cutting area.


Water Source: If possible, have a water source nearby to cool down the cutting disc. Water helps prevent overheating and extends the life of the disc.


Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Prepare the Work Area

Clear the area around the concrete you're about to cut. Remove any obstacles, debris, or items that might obstruct your work.


Set up your workbench or table to support the concrete piece, ensuring it's stable and secure.


If you're cutting indoors, consider using plastic sheeting to create a barrier that contains the dust generated during the cutting process.


Step 2: Mark the Cutting Line

Measure and mark the cutting line on the concrete surface using a tape measure and pencil. For accuracy, double-check your measurements and use a straight edge to create a precise line.


If you're cutting a long straight line, consider using a chalk line or laser level to create a guide line that you can follow.


Step 3: Put on Safety Gear

Safety should be your top priority. Put on safety glasses, ear protection, a dust mask, and work gloves before you start the cutting process.

Step 4: Attach the Diamond Cutting Disc

Ensure that your angle grinder is unplugged or turned off before attaching the cutting disc.


Follow the diamond tools manufacturer's instructions to securely attach the diamond cutting disc to the angle grinder. Make sure it's properly tightened and aligned.


Step 5: Start Cutting

Position the angle grinder over the marked cutting line, with the cutting disc parallel to the concrete surface.


Gently start the grinder and allow the cutting disc to touch the concrete surface. Don't apply too much pressure initially.


Slowly guide the grinder along the marked cutting line. Let the speed of the grinder and the diamond disc do the work; avoid forcing the grinder through the concrete.


If you're making a deep cut, you may need to make multiple passes, gradually increasing the depth with each pass.


Step 6: Cooling the Disc

Concrete cutting generates heat that can quickly wear out the cutting disc. To prolong the disc's life, periodically dip it in water while cutting. This cools down the disc and prevents overheating.

Step 7: Finishing the Cut

Once you've completed the cut, turn off the angle grinder and let the disc come to a complete stop before setting it down.


If the cut isn't completely through the concrete, use a hammer and chisel to carefully break off the remaining piece.


Step 8: Clean Up

Turn off the angle grinder and unplug it from the power source.


Clean up the work area, removing any dust and debris generated during the cutting process.


Step 9: Safety First

Even after you've finished cutting, keep your safety gear on until you've completed the cleanup. This will help protect you from any remaining dust or debris.

Step 10: Disc Removal and Maintenance

Once you're done cutting, remove the diamond cutting disc from the angle grinder and clean it. Properly cleaned and maintained discs will last longer and provide better results in the future.


Tips for Success

Choose the Right Cutting Disc: Diamond cutting discs come in various types for different purposes. Select a disc designed specifically for concrete cutting to ensure efficiency and safety.


Take Breaks: Concrete cutting can be physically demanding. Take short breaks to avoid fatigue and maintain focus.


Practice Safety: Always wear the necessary safety gear and work in a well-ventilated area to minimize exposure to dust and debris.


Control Dust: While water helps control dust, you can also use a vacuum attachment designed for angle grinders to further reduce airborne particles.


Avoid Overheating: Don't push the grinder too hard. Let the disc do the cutting and periodically cool it down with water.


Secure the Concrete: Use clamps or vice grips to prevent the concrete piece from moving during cutting, ensuring a straight and accurate cut.


Start Small: If you're new to concrete cutting, practice on a smaller, less critical project to build your skills before tackling larger tasks.



Cutting concrete with an angle grinder can be a challenging yet rewarding task when done correctly. By following the steps outlined in this guide and prioritizing safety, you can achieve precise cuts and complete your projects with confidence. Remember to choose the right tools, maintain your equipment, and practice proper techniques for successful concrete cutting results.

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