15 Best Chainsaws [Extended List] – (Check Before REPENTING)

best chainsaw

If you want the best chainsaw on the market, there’s only really two brands that you need to choose from; Stihl and Husqvarna

This isn’t just a personal opinion but a generally agreed upon fact.

Ask any expert and you’ll hear one of those names in return.

The catch, however, is that if for some reason you want the most expensive chainsaw on the market, you’ll probably be looking at those brands too. 

And to be honest, for the average household user, I’m not entirely sure if they’re worth it.

There’s no shortage of cheaper brands that offer similar levels of power and reliability. Albeit, without quite the same level build quality and design finesse.

On this page, you’ll find a selection of chainsaw reviews detailing tools that are ideal for both the household user and the professional arborist (guy who cuts trees for a living).

​1​5 ​Best ​Chainsaw of 2019 On The Market


In my perspective the best chainsaw has a very vague meaning. What this means is that it depends on the user or the buyer that which chainsaw in the best in his perspective. A large chainsaw with a bigger blade and good fuel efficiency may be the target of one user whereas the other wants a more sleek design with better options for household use.

One person wants the ultimate companion for minor pruning of his backyard trees whereas the other one wants a heavy duty chainsaw for his daily work as a carpenter so the user defines what his ideal is when it comes to define the BEST.

  • ​​Worx WG303.1
  • ​​​​Remington Limb-N-Trim RM1425
  • ​​Black and Decker LP1000
  • ​​Remington Ranger RM1025SPS
  • ​​Oregon PowerNow CS1500
  • ​​Husqvarna 240 2 HP Chainsaw, 952802154
  • ​​GreenWorks 20312 G-MAX 16-Inch
  • ​​Makita 5012B Commercial Grade 11
  • ​​Poulan Pro PP3816A
  • ​​Remington RM5118R Rodeo
  • ​​PP5020AV Poulan Pro 20-Inch
  • ​Earthwise 16-Inch 12-Amp CS30116
  • ​Husqvarna 450 50.2cc 18-Inch
  • ​Tanaka TCS33EDTP/12 12-Inch
  • ​Husqvarna 460 20-Inch(CARB Compliant)

List of ​​Electric Chainsaw


​​Worx WG303.1 (The Best Seller)

​The first product we will be reviewing that is one of the best electric chainsaws on the market today is the WORX 16-Inch 14.5 Amp Electric Chainsaw with Auto-Tension. WORX is a fantastic manufacturer of tools, as they provide very reasonably priced items without hurting the quality of the product like many other manufacturers.

This is the cheapest option on our list today, and whenever we are looking at an option this cheap, we have to make sure they don’t sacrifice quality just to have more products sold. As well, we want to make sure it lasts a long amount of time so it doesn’t cost you more in the long run. There is nothing more annoying than having to replace your tools just when you need them.

The WORX 16-Inch 14.5 Amp Electric Chainsaw with Auto-Tension is equipped with a 14.5 Amp motor that offers a great performance of cutting, similar to those used by farmers and ranchers. It comes with a patented auto tension chain system, which will make sure the chain never over tightens. This allows the chain to stay at the right tension for multiple uses.

The kickback bar on this product is low and there is a built in chain brake to ensure your safety. It has an automatic lubrication system to make sure the chainsaw is well oiled. It also has a window indicator to let you know when the oil needs to be refilled. As we highlight in the complete Worx WG303.1 review, ​the machine also has a 3 year manufacturer’s warranty on it which is why it's our top pick. If anything happens inside the three year window, another saw is sent straight from the factory and the warranty starts all over again.

​features

  • ​Power rating of 14.5 amps, 3.5 HP and equipped with a 16-inch cutting bar
  • ​Chain mechanism that prevents over-tightening and stays in the right tension during operation
  • ​Safety chain stop and low kickback bar
  • ​Easy to lubricate sprocket system
  • ​Single knob to secure chain below the bar at appropriate tension
  • ​Plastic, copper and steel construction that offers durability & longevity
  • ​Beautiful black and orange finish
  • ​2-year manufacturer warranty

Pros

  • ​Easy to use
  • Superb warranty
  • Auto Tension
  • Safe
  • Lubricates automatically

Cons

  • Hard to find replacement parts
  • Uses too much oil sometimes
  • Does not cut well at the tip

Verdict

​This is a sturdy chainsaw and the level of friction that reduces its efficiency is great. WORX has done some radical work to minimize this problem. A built in automatic oil lubrication system enables your chainsaw to work smoothly and without any glitch, so you can enjoy a good cutting and pruning experience.


The chainsaw has a built-in oil reserve section which stores oil and can be used when needed. To facilitate the user it has a level indicator that enables the user to check whether it needs a refill or not. It is provided with a Rubberized rear handle that can be very handy and provides firm gripping.

Remington Limb-N-Trim RM1425 (The Budget Choice)

Cheap power tools can sometimes be a case of false economics i.e. it would be cheaper in the long run to buy something that will last longer. In the case of chainsaws, however, you can get some pretty great bargains provided you’re willing to sacrifice on power.

A perfect example of this is the Remington Limb and Trim. Power is a mere 8 Amps (max power is 15) but it still benefits from:

  • ​6.5 pound weight (lightest chainsaw on the list.)
  • ​Handles hedge trimming perfectly, log cutting effectively (but slower than most), and small branches with ease.
  • ​4.3 stars on Amazon after 371 reviews. (not an amazing score for a chainsaw but 84% of buyers gave it 4 stars or more)
  • ​​Under $50 price tag

Black and Decker LP1000 (For Alligator Fans)

Love them or hate them, there’s a reason that alligator chainsaws continue to grow in popularity. They’re lighter. They’re safer. And for log cutting, well, they’re just plain easier to use.

Personally, I recommend the LP1000 by Black and Decker.

Disclaimer: I’ve used a total of three alligator chainsaws in my lifetime i.e. I’m not exactly an expert.

Still, I recommend the LP1000 for the following reasons.

  • ​It features a 4.5 Amp engine and 6 inch guidebar (standard specs for an alligator)
  • I’ve personally owned it for it for over 3 years.
  • It’s started every single time during that time.
  • It does a better job on logs than gas chainsaws that cost 5 times its price.
  • It does a better job on pruning provided the branches are less than 4 inches.
  • It weights 6.5 pounds.
  • It’s backed by 800 reviews on Amazon, scoring 4.7 stars out of 5. Be sure to check out our full review of the Black & Decker LP1000.
  • It’s on the market for under $80.

​Remington Ranger RM1025SPS (​​For Hard to Reach Branches)

Another alternative to the standard chainsaw design, pole saws are pretty self explanatory. Most trees grow taller than the average man. And the average man should never climb a tree with a fast moving blade.

For cutting hard to reach leaves and branches, they are therefore the only logical solution. Another benefit is that most manufacturers seem to be aiming at the hundred dollar price point.

My personal pole saw of choice is the Remington Ranger. Aside from it’s nice name, it benefits from the following.

  • ​8 Amp power and 10 inch guidebar.
  • ​Adjustable pole length via flip and lock clamps.
  • Saw is detachable for independent operation.
  • 1000 reviews on Amazon, 4.4 stars out of 5, 85% 4 stars or more.
  • 100 dollar price tag.
  • List Element

​​​​​The Remington Ranger RM1025SPS – reviewed in full here. It is worth noting however that if you’re happy with an 8 inch bar length and a 6.5 Amp engine, you can purchase the similarly high rated Sun Joe for ​under $80. 

Oregon PowerNow CS1500 (For WoodWorking)

For the one percent of people that came here looking for a chainsaw for wood working, there are two things that you should know.

First off, starting wood working with a chainsaw is kind of like starting the skill from scratch. With patience however, if you can use an table saw, you can use a chainsaw.

And secondly, you’ll need a something electric, more than likely corded.

Gas is out immediately because why bother? Woodworking has never been about speed. And the screaming motor tends to kill any sense of relaxation that you get from your work.

15 Amps is worth paying extra for. And guidebar length completely depends on what you plan on building. ​You may just find Oregon PowerNow CS1500 – reviewed in full here.

Personally, my woodworking chainsaw of choice is the Oregon PowerNow. It has 15 Amps, the guidebar length of my preference and it’s a genuine pleasure to use.

This is the best chainsaw for homeowners that don’t do heavy-duty cutting jobs, and if you want to purchase something affordable and efficient in the same time this is the perfect chainsaw for you. It is ideal for cutting tasks all over the yard and you will be able to use it in emergency situations when you need to cut wood in order to stay warm. It is also very useful for cutting all side branches off trees while somebody else is cutting it from the ground.

It is developed with X-Torq engine that combines better fuel economy, high performance, and lower emissions. If you add to that centrifugal air cleaning system, you will see what means to have best chainsaw that could function as air filter also. The engine is designed perfectly to be powerful and small at the same time for your additional comfort, so it is not that heavy at all and you will be able to cut all day without any fatigue.

LowVib technology is similar to electric models, and it allows you to reduce the vibration and to provide you with perfect power that could help you enjoy during your cutting hours. As we highlight in the full Husqvarna 240 review, ​the other important thing is that you don’t have to wear ear protection plugs because the pressure on your ears is the lowest in its group, so the comfort is bigger and therefore its efficiency. 

Pros

  • ​​It weighs only 10 pounds
  • ​​It is very comfortable and not bad on your ears.
  • ​​It contains chain brake

Cons

  • ​​You have to maintain it frequently

The second product that is definitely one of the best electric chainsaws on the market today is the GreenWorks 20312 G-MAX 16-Inch Cordless Chainsaw. GreenWorks is one of our favorite companies that develops chainsaws. They create high end products that don't just work, they work green, therefore helping the environment.

Their products are known to last a long time and are equipped with a variety of features to meet all of your cutting needs. This product is also more expensive than the last. Whenever we look at a more expensive product, we want to make sure it has more features and at the end of the day, provides more value for the additional price tag.

The GreenWorks 20312 G-MAX 40V 16-Inch Cordless Chainsaw uses a DigiPro brush-less motor that has the ability to perform 100 cuts on just one charge. It uses premium power to accomplish that. This machine comes with a 4AH Battery and Charger to keep it working well. There is much to be said about a cordless-option, as you won't be dealing with the hassle of locating and moving around extension cords.

It can also be used with the GreenWorks G-MAX Li-Ion System so you can swap out tools for maximum customization. The motor also allows up to 30 percent more torque to enhance the performance of the cut.

The overall design offers 70 percent less vibration compared to other models, so you can feel more comfortable while cutting. As for safety, it is equipped with a chain brake and low kickback chain, so you can feel good! Check out the full review of this Greenworks 20312 G-Max here.

Pros

  • ​​Cordless
  • ​​Quiet performance
  • ​Does not vibrate as much

  • ​​Better for environment
  • ​​Great cut

Cons

  • ​​Charge does not last as long as it should

The final product that is also one of the best electric chainsaws on the market today is the Makita 5012B Commercial Grade 11 3/4-Inch 11.5 amp Electric Chain Saw. We wanted to include a Makita product as they also offer high end products that are great and easy to use.

This particular product is very concise and compact, weighing in at just 9.5 pounds. This allows for it to easily be mobile and taking anywhere for a cut. It is a reliable product made with durable parts to last a long time. The chain can work at speeds of up to 5,500 FPM so it can cut fast and accurately.

The whole unit is housed in poly-carbonate. There is a special sprocket located at the end of the chain bar, so the chain will run smoothly. For added safety, a large hand protector is included to push away any flying chips.

Pros

  • ​​Works great
  • ​​Great look
  • ​​Very safe to use
  • ​​Made out of strong and durable materials
  • ​​Runs fast

Cons

  • ​​Not as easy to start
  • ​​A bit pricey

Poulan Pro contains many important features that make it best chainsaw with 16’’ steel bar and 2-Cycle gas engine. You will also get numerous features that will help you engage with firewood such as over molded rear and anti-vibration. Most users chose this particular model because it will minimize fatigue and you will be able to enjoy all the time during your cutting hours. It contains powerful engine with a long steel bar, which means that it could cut bigger trees in a timely manner.

Air filtration system is perfect if you have in mind that it will less fuel spending and therefore you can get chainsaw that will keep your money in pockets. It contains also automatic chain oiler that you can adjust before you start and it will always show you when it is empty because it will automatically stop working. Effortless start system is amazing and what you will notice after the first touch is that is not that loud, which means that you will get additional comfort. With the model, you will get an extra chain and carry case, which is great if we compare it to other, similar tools.

You can cut long length and operate all day without interfering with its work. 2 years warranty as a guarantee, but that won’t be necessary as users stated that they used it for years.

Pros

  • ​Anti-vibration system is perfect for fatigue and health issues that could happen if you use ​the ​chainsaw frequently
  • ​Contains automatic oiling system which is quite handy when you are in woods.

Cons

  • You have to maintain it frequently in order to stay with you for a long time.

2-Cycle chainsaws are some of the best, with the Remington RM5118R being no exception. The Remington chainsaw is one of the best commercial chainsaw options for consumers, whilst also being well priced as the best 18 inch chainsaw review.

With an 18 inch chain bar, the chainsaw is ready to take on big jobs and is both powerful and durable. Although this chainsaw is smaller than some commercial chainsaws, it tackles as though it is larger than what it actually is. The chainsaw can eat through large logs without a problem, and is comfortable to use with an anti vibration handle and electronic ignition for a quick and easy start.

You can feel how well made the chainsaw is.

It works great for extended amounts of time, and the chain stays well lubricated with use. The chainsaw also comes with a handy plastic case.​ As we highlight in the complete Remington Rodeo RM5118R review, ​this is a powerful chainsaw with great control at a low price. Quick starts with anti vibration works perfectly. Heavy but well priced.

If you want to buy an exceptional and affordable chainsaw, you should consider purchasing this one. It is constructed by PoulanPro; however, it is owned by Husqvarna which means that most of the components are used as other Husqvarna chainsaws. When you compare best chainsaw with Husqvarna, you will get something similar for less money, and at the same time, build quality and reliability are the same so you don’t have to worry. The best feature that Poulan Pro chainsaws contain is anti-vibration handle which will give you the possibility to enjoy many hours with your chainsaw without any fatigue.

With air filter system you will get extended air filter life and in the same time, it will reduce fuel consumption without losing extra power. That is a great feature if you have in mind that you have to fill it up all the time with oil and gas. It is specifically made for homeowners, and it is not recommended to use it for heavy-duty, however, with unbreakable chain and great features you can use it for a long time with you any strings attached. It is best chainsaw because of its comfort that is accustomed for people who use it frequently for outside work and it is perfect for cutting branches and medium-sized trees.

Pros

  • It contains anti-vibration feature
  • It has same components as Husqvarna and it is cheaper
  • Perfect comfort that you will feel from the beginning

Cons

  • It is not for heavy-duty cutting

This particular chainsaw is popular among users because Earthwise company and manufacturer have branded his eco-friendliness. If you decide to purchase best chainsaw that has the possibility to cut medium-sized branches without any problem, this is the perfect one for you. It contains many different features and quality components and that should ensure you that every cutting job will be a piece of cake. What is most important, this is an electric chainsaw and that is why you are restricted because you have to plug it into the electrical outlet.

It comes with 12 amp motor that powers chain and 16’’ bar. It is great if you have in mind that you want to complete easy tasks around your house. Even though many people are using it for small cutting, it is powerful enough to cut trees that are one foot in diameter without any additional problem.

When we talk about safety, which is the most important feature for best chainsaw, it offers you great cutting technology with chain brake for these reasons. It is equipped with less chain tensioning system, so you can manually adjust it in order to make it comfortable for your own cutting experience. It is much quieter and has less vibration than other gas-powered chainsaws, and pack more power so you will be able to use its features with an ease.

Pros

  • ​Powerful engine with 16’’ bar which is perfect for household and small trees.  
  • Great security measures

Cons

  • It works on electricity, so you must plug it in an electric outlet in order to turn it on and start.

It doesn’t matter if you need best chainsaw because you want to cut trees for firewood or you need because you are a professional lumberjack, it is always better to have a tool that will bring you extra power for the affordable price. This amazing chainsaw is perfect because it is lightweight and great for small jobs, but in the same time, it contains professional quality which means that you can cut whatever you want. It is very easy to start and it doesn’t vibrate that much if we compare it to similar chainsaws.

It offers a great combination of power and efficiency and that is the reason why it is the top choice for many people all over the world. It contains also X-Torq technology that this best chainsaw increases fuel efficiency and reduces emissions which mean that you saw will be more stable and with less vibration.

This particular chainsaw contains technology that combines electric and gas chainsaw, which is designed to reduce emissions, vibration and fuel consumption, and if we add that it contains 3.2 horsepower engine, which is considered as one of the most efficient engines, we can proudly say that it is the best chainsaw available for its price.

Pros

  • ​It reduces emissions which mean that is eco-friendly
  • Gives you perfect balance between power and weight
  • It contains LowVib technology that reduces vibration for 50%

Cons

  • ​It doesn’t contain prolonged usage feature

Whether you struggle with an old saw or an ax, don’t worry it is time to purchase best chainsaw available on the market for its price. This is at the same time affordable, durable and great chainsaw solution for your homework. It contains smaller engine than average, but you don’t have to worry because it will give you full power to finish your hobby details and home-pruning tasks. Even though the included bar is shorter, it is still ideal for handling, It contains ergonomic grip, which means that you will feel outstanding comfort and if we add that it is lightweight, we can proudly say that you won’t find a better chainsaw.

Its engine has 1.6 horse power with 32 cylinders, and it is made with Pure-Fire green technology which brings low emission and therefore it is eco-friendly and safer for the environment. The engine contains also two strokes so that you can work in a different orientation, which makes it a versatile tool. The saw bar includes 12’’ Oregon bar along with chain set and it is designed to provide you efficient cutting with less vibration and kickback. You can also manually control the performance in order to secure the operation. The most important thing about this best chainsaw is that you will be able to manage it easily without any difficulties for long periods of time.

Pros

  • ​It is very powerful and compact
  • You don’t need any cords in order to use it.

Cons

  • It has a smaller bar and that is the reason you cannot work on larger and open areas quick as other chainsaws with a bigger bar.

Husqvarna 460 20-Inch (CARB Compliant)

There are many Husqvarna models that are perfect for everyday use; however, we decided to present you Husqvarna 460 Rancher which is considered as the best chainsaw with 20’’ bar. It contains X-Torg engine and that increases its power. Many owners stated that it is great chainsaw even for a heavy-duty use; however, you have to consider that it is heavy, so it is better to be careful while handling it.

With quick release air filter, you will get maximum durability and possibility to save the money because of fuel efficiency. It contains also side-mounted chain tensioner so that you can have easier access than on other similar chainsaws. The air filter is a precious feature because you can clean it and replace it all the time and it won’t give you the smell like older models.

There are many features that you have to consider for best chainsaw, and that is the reason we presented you this particular model that will change the way you think of chainsaws. Even though it is heavy, it is designed to provide you maximum comfort during you cutting hours. It comes with a warranty in between 2-4 years, which is great if something happens with it, but don’t worry it is efficient and secure enough to be in perfect conditions for years.

Pros

  • You can access side-mounted chain tensioner easily
  • It contains air filter that will provide you better tranquility during your working hours
  • It is CARB compliant

Cons

  • It is heavy so you have to be careful while using it.

Chainsaw Buying Guide

Like most power tools, chainsaws are not an easy thing to shop for. For the first time buyer, the array of moving parts, features, bar lenghts and power levels can be confusing if not downright daunting.

The good news is that once you know the basics, a few reviews is all you really need to make an informed decision. Reviews can be found throughout this site, but first I’ll describe the key chainsaw features that you need to understand.

Guidebar Length

Arguably the first thing to consider when buying a chainsaw is the guidebar length. The guidebar is the actual saw and it basically dictates what you can and cannot cut. Household models typically range from 6 to 20 inches. Heavy duty models on the other hand top out at around 60. Unless you’re literally a lumberjack, 60 inches is crazy. And if you’re looking at general yard work anything more than 20 inches is completely unnecessary.

Power Source

​After guidebar length, the next logical step is to consider the power source. Chainsaws can broadly be divided into gas powered and electric powered. Electric powered chainsaws, however, can further be divided into corded and cordless (battery powered). And, of course, all three have their own unique set of pros and cons.

Gas Chainsaw

Pros

​Cons

​Most powerful of the three.

​Generally heavier.

​Fastest of the three.

​Always noisier.

​Longest bar lengths.

​Harder to maintain.

​Always cordless.

​Regular fuel costs.

​Good for heavy-duty Cutting Tasks

​Bad for the environment.

Corded Electrical

Pros

​Cons

​Easier to use

​Less power than gas

​Lighter

​Max guide bar of 18 inches

​Quieter

​Must be plugged in

​No fumes

​x

​Almost maintenance free

​x

Cordless Electrical

Pros

​Cons

​​Has all the advantages of corded chainsaw

​Least power of the three

​Most portable of the three. No Extension cord needed

​Most expensive of the three

​Quieter

​Batteries run out

Diesel

Pros

​Cons

​​​They are ​more powerful than gas saw

​​Harder​ To find in the market

​x

​​Fumes can be ​bad. You may need protection from fumes in operation.

Power Level

​For trimming, pruning and cutting anything less than 6 inches, virtually any chainsaw will do. In other words, choose electric and shop by features, weight, not power. Otherwise take a look at the following table:

Recommended Bar Size

​Trimming & Pruning; ​

​Small Size Tree Cutting; Removing Tree Limbs

Storm Clean-u​p; Medium Tree Cutting

​Firewood Cutting; Large Tree Cutting

​Professional 20" - 24" Bar

​Good

​Good

​Best

​Best

​Heavy Duty 18" - 20" Bar

​Good

​Good

​Best

​Good

​Medium Duty 16" - 18" Bar

​Good

​Best

​Good

​Not Recommended

​Light Duty 8" - 16" Bar

​Best

​Good

​Not Recommended

​Not Recommended

​Electric Chainsaw

​Best

​Good

​Not Recommended

​Not Recommended

Weight

​Before you head out and buy the most powerful chainsaw that you can afford, keep one thing in mind; increased power invariably means increased weight. I therefore generally advise people to make a list of everything that they want to cut before they buy. And once they’ve done that to simply choose the lightest model that will get the job done. The importance of weight obviously depends on your personal fitness levels too.

Category

I didn’t mention this first because when most people say chainsaw, they mean the original version i.e. two handle, a motor and a big long blade.

If you have a particular job in mind, however, there are two alternatives:

Pole Saws

​Pretty much self explanatory, pole saws consist of a very long pole with a very short chainsaw on the end. Rule number one of chainsaw safety is to keep your feet firmly on the ground at all times. And poles saws can obviously greatly increase your reach.  Typically priced between fifty and a hundred dollars, they are aimed directly at homeowners with hard to reach trees and hedges.

Alligator Chainsaws

​Named after the alligator style jaws on the end, alligator chainsaws feel completely different to the standard kind. Instead of simply cutting through a branch, alligators grab the branch and cut in a single motion. Like pole saws, length and power limits are greatly reduced. But they can prove ideal for both log cutting and certain.

Special Features

​Different chainsaws obviously come with different features. Some are genuinely useful. Some are pointless gimmicks. And some are design experiments gone horribly wrong. Here are a few examples, starting with the most important.

​Anti Vibration Features

​Pretty self explanatory, these features help to shield your hands and arms from the vibration of cutting wood. This is a particularly important feature on powerful chainsaws and/or those that you plan on using for long periods of time.

​Spring Assist Starting

​If you want to buy a gas powered chainsaw, this is pretty much a must have. This will typically cut the force required to start the chainsaw by up to 75%.

​Tool-less Chain Adjustment

​This allows you to adjust the tension of the chain with a knob rather than a tool. It’s not mandatory feature by any means but if you plan on tackling different tree types in quick succession, it’s well worth shopping around for.

​Automatic Oiler

​Again, not mandatory, but genuinely useful. Adequate oiling is essential for safety, efficiency and the life of your chainsaw. Basically, this feature gives you one less thing to think about.

Safety Features

The number one safety feature of any chainsaw is the person using it. Start doing stupid things and even the safest chainsaw in the world isn’t going to protect you. At the same time however, modern chainsaws come with a wealth of safety features that can offer further protection to the already responsible user.

I’ve listed these in no particular order.

​Chain Break

​This is a chainsaws primary defense against kickback. And kickback is among the biggest fears associated with chainsaws. It not only results in you losing control of the chainsaw. More often than not, it sends the chainsaw moving directly in your direction.The chainbreak is designed to automatically cut power to the chain should this occur.

​Front/Left Hand Guard

​This provides further protection against kickback by protecting the hand most likely to come in contact with the chain.

​Additional Kickback Protection

​Further protection from kickback can be found in the form of certain chain/guidebar designs. Examples include protective links placed directly between the chains teeth and a slimmer tip radius at the end of the guidebar. The downside of this feature is that it does limit the cutting ability of a chainsaw. And as a result, it’s not particularly common either.

​Chain Catcher

​The chain catcher does exactly what it promises to do; it catches the chain if it breaks or derails. In other words, it prevents a fast moving chain of blades from heading directly towards your person. Personally, I’d put this in the must have category.

​Right Hand Guard

​The Right Hand Guard is primarily designed to protect your right hand if the chain catcher doesn’t do its job. It might seem like overkill until you look at the above diagram again. Personally, I think it’s worth it for peace of mind alone.

​Easily Accessible Stop Control

​This should seem like a no brainer. But if a chainsaw designer can forget it (and they occasionally do), then the chainsaw buyer definitely can. Never buy or use a chainsaw that cannot be shut off immediately if you find yourself in a potentially dangerous situation. It should be easily accessible, clearly marked i.e. brightly colored, and easy to pull or push.

​Why you should Buy A Chainsaw?

When it comes to cutting and pruning trees and collecting firewood there is no substitute for a chainsaw. You can also do milling with a chainsaw mills. Though, the machine is oily and smelly, but spending an hour or two on this magnificent piece of machinery will get you enough firewood to fill a complete pickup truck. These machines have been around us for almost a century and with the advancing times they are becoming more and more easy to use and more and more efficient.

Suffice it to say, the market has a best and a worst on the basis of number of buyers who want to buy a particular brand. As per the sales the top of the charts and the king of the chainsaws these days is Husqvarna’s new Husqvarna 240e which boasts some excellent features. Pulling the handle once or twice is more than enough for it to take a start and the handle compartment is big enough for a gloved hand to start the machine.

Most of the companies out there do not take these specific details into account but they matter a lot in the overall experience. It is a great chainsaw and everything in it works perfectly but apart from all that its spinning rate was a little slower than some of the chainsaws available in the market and the part that took away from it was that a screw driver is needed to remove the cover for the air filter and spark plug which creates a potential for a lost screw.

Besides this a couple of products that are worth mentioning in this category are machines from SOLO, POULAN and JOHN DEERE. They all have some striking features which may interest some particular buyers. So at the end, though it may sound redundant but it is worth pointing out that the ultimate decision is by the buyer.

Safety Gear

As you can see from the info-graphic to your right, chainsaw injuries are both wide ranging and potentially fatal. Any saw has the potential to cause injury. But the hand held nature of chainsaws and the fact that they are generally used outside make them particularly dangerous.

I’ve covered chainsaw safety in depth here. But I decided to include a brief section on the homepage because if you’re a first time buyer, you might want to consider adding a few items of safety gear to your shopping list.

In no particular order of importance, here are a few things worth considering:

  • ​Chaps or cut-resistant pants.
  • Cut resistant gloves with excellent grip.
  • Strong safety glasses with side shields.
  • Slip resistant shoes/boots(aka chainsaw boots) with a steel toe.
  • Ear plugs if you plan on doing anything loud i.e. most chainsaw jobs.
  • A hard hat if you plan on cutting anything overhead.

Proper Maintenance of Your Chainsaw

The most important component of a chainsaw mill is obviously the chainsaw itself. Remember milling is more taxing on your chainsaw than regular cross-cutting. Therefore, if you want to have a high-performing sawmill, it is important you keep your chainsaw in top shape and problem-free.

Regular maintenance of your chainsaw will increase its lifespan and you will not have to shell out a lot on expensive repairs or new saws. It's always a good idea to read your chainsaw manual for individual tips on maintaining your chainsaw. For the more technical problems, for example, those involving the chainsaw’s carburetor, you might need to seek professional help.

Here is a list of basic components that need regular maintenance:

The Chain

​The importance of keeping the chain sharpened cannot be overstated. Take the chain off the bar and check it thoroughly for signs of wear and tear. Use a filing jig to file the teeth of the chain. While you must file the teeth horizontally, at an angle of 30°, for chipper chains, semi-chisel chains should be filed at 10° angle below horizontal. A chisel chain needs 30° below-horizontal filing.

You must also lubricate the chain. Use a solvent to remove all grime and then keep the chain soaked overnight in fresh 10 weight motor oil.

The Spark Plug

​Remove the spark plug, ideally using a socket wrench, and clean it with a dry brush and check the electrodes. The tip of the electrodes should have a consistent dark color. Some chainsaws have maintenance-free electronic ignition systems. However, if the electronic ignition system is giving you trouble, it is best to take it to a professional.

The Exhaust Port

​It's very common for the exhaust port to get clogged with dust and wood chippings the more you use your saw. Take off the muffler and the screen and clean them both with a solvent or compressed air. The goal of the exercise is to remove all the grimy buildup around the exhaust port.

The Automatic Oiler

​On newer models, chainsaws come with automatic oilers to keep the chain well-lubricated. You may need to clear the oil-pickup filter to ensure the oiler is able to complete it's mission. A clog here could mean a new bar and or chain. Gone un-noticed for too long and it could burn the entire chainsaw engine if not properly maintained.

The Air Filter

​Remove the air filter from the carburetor and use compressed air to clean it properly. Alternatively, dropping it on pavement and or concrete multiple times before using air or any solvent to clean it will reduce the amount of air or solvent needed.

Common Chainsaw Problems and Solutions

​Even a well maintained chainsaw can develop problems over the years. Some of the problems can be addressed at home by carrying out simple checks and then completing the fix yourself. Here are the three most common problems I've found and their causes:

Problem 1: Difficulty in Starting the Chainsaw

​If you are struggling to start your chainsaw, you are probably dealing with a bad spark plug. The culprit can also be stale fuel. Check the spark plug and fuel conditions to address this issue. If the problem persists even after addressing these two issues, take your chainsaw to a professional service station.

Problem 2: Chainsaw Dies After Starting

​In case your chainsaw starts, but loses power after some time before shutting down completely, check the air filter and the exhaust chamber, do the maintenance tips above to make sure they are both free of wood and dust. A dirty filter and a clogged exhaust chamber can be the cause of this problem.

Problem 3: Overheating of the Bar

​If your saw bar is getting unusually hot, it's time to sharpen your chainsaw. Blunt teeth may be causing a clattering sound while the chainsaw is in use. The tip of your bar will also start changing color from lack of oil. Stop immediately and find the root cause of the problem or you will be replacing your bar and chain in the near future.

Chris Ross

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