Why Does Dirt Dull A Chainsaw? (Explained)

Dirt dulls a chainsaw chain due to its abrasive nature and the presence of hard particles like sand, rocks, and gravel. When a chainsaw comes into contact with dirt, these particles can wear away the steel teeth on the chain, causing it to become dull. To avoid dirt, cut above the ground level and maintain a sharp chain.

Are you a homeowner using a chainsaw, it means you have to clear dirt it accumulates. In some situations, it is hard to avoid.

A powerful tool is a chainsaw to cut through wood and tough materials.

This tool right from its invention is useful for home and industry.

Chainsaws are good at functioning when it is sharp as it enables cutting with ease through the wood.

Having a dull chainsaw reduces its efficiency and damages the chainsaw.

Why does dirt dull a chainsaw

Why does dirt trouble the chainsaw?

Dirt dulls a chainsaw chain due to its abrasive nature and the presence of hard particles like sand, rocks, and gravel. When a chainsaw comes into contact with dirt, these particles can wear away the steel teeth on the chain, causing it to become dull.

Additionally, dirt can get stuck between the chain links, causing the chain to stretch. Here are some key points on how dirt affects a chainsaw:

  • Dirt is abrasive: Although dirt may feel soft, it is actually an abrasive material that can eat away at steel, rust, and paint when blown at high velocity. This abrasive nature is what causes it to dull a chainsaw chain.
  • Hard particles: Dirt contains hard particles such as sand, rocks, and gravel, which can quickly wear away the teeth on a chainsaw chain.
  • Chain stretching: When dirt gets stuck between the chain links, it can cause the chain to stretch, leading to poor cutting performance and potential damage to the chainsaw.
  • Excessive wear and tear: In addition to dulling the chain, dirt can also cause excessive wear and tear on the chain links, sprocket, and other components of the chainsaw

Having dirt on the chainsaw is not a recommendation to use. The dirt exposure is not beneficial.

It dulls the cutter teeth, and any sudden exposure to debris or dirt comes with increased kickbacks risk.

Dirt means outdoor particles inclusion such as sand, soil, silt, clay, or organic matter.

The logs are covered with dirt and need to be sawed means there is no other way out but to deal with such logs.

It appears imminent, and there is no way to avoid the dirt from reaching your chainsaw.

There will be no initial contact with dirt in some places, but exposure to dirt while cutting is enough to dull the cutting chain of the machine.

The guide bar grooving gets plugged with dust, and there are full possibilities for kickbacks to increase.

how to avoid dirt in cutting

To avoid dulling your chainsaw chain with dirt, it is important to take precautions such as cutting above the ground level, maintaining a sharp chain, and keeping the chainsaw and its components clean and well-maintained.

What exactly happens on using a chainsaw in the dirt?

Dirt has various hard particles in comparison to the steel of the chain.

Owing to this, it dulls the sharp cutters of the chain and affects the performance.

The dirt gets stuck in the chain and the sprocket and adds more load to the engine.

The dirt may have hard organic and inorganic minerals as per the location and it may be quartz or silica.

Quartz has a hardness value of 7 and it is greater than machine tools.

As the harder material presses with a less hard chain, the sharpness is reduced and makes the chainsaw dull.

Dirt particles trapped between the chain and the guide bar affect the chain operation. Thus, it adds to the engine’s unnecessary load.

It increases the consumption of the lubricant and consumes fuel in a large amount.

Thus, dirt is not ideal for a chainsaw and any other engine.

The problems associated with running a chainsaw in the dirt:

  • Dull chain cutters– The chain becomes dull immediately on running in the dirt, and it needs sharpening after running in the dirt once every five minutes.
  • Worn-out chains– The dust or sand gets trapped in the chain and bar, affecting the smooth chain operation. Running a dull chain means greater effort and longer time cutting, resulting in worn-out chains. It also consumes more fuel.
  • Sprocket damage– The sprocket of the chainsaw gives the chain power to rotate around the bar. If dirt lodges in the sprocket, the chainsaw loses performance as it hinders the motor from running smoothly.

It is crucial to understand the reason for the chainsaw getting dull. Signs are showing you to identify the dullness in a chainsaw.

Running a chainsaw quickly accumulates dirt fast, and it does not help as it becomes dull. It affects the performance.

You may cut the wood to 90% using a chainsaw, and using a regular saw helps cut the other side.  

Reasons for a chainsaw becoming dull 

Contact with ground

Keeping the chainsaw running with the ground makes the chainsaw dull.

It is because the ground has dust and sand that is abrasive, and it has tiny rocks in a lot.

You may avoid such happenings by not cutting the wood and placing it on the ground.

In case, you cut huge wood locks, roll the log to prevent the chainsaw from hitting the ground.

Cutting dirty trees

The felling of trees involves having the barks in soil and dirt. The soil and dirt make the chainsaw dull.

Tree barks accumulate dirt and soil in lots carried by the wind.

Fortunately, preventing the chainsaw from becoming dull on the tree barks that appear dirty is possible.

You may remove the tree barks before cutting and prevent your chainsaws from becoming dull.

There is no need to take off the barks from the tree completely. Using an axe is enough to take out the bark from a spot.

Metal or strong objects

The woodcutting may appear strange. There may be a nail or some metal piece on the wood.

It is hard to understand how these objects are found in a tree or wood you wish to cut.

Well, you are true, but these are the objects nailed to wood to hang signposts or a treehouse for kids.

Regardless of the object getting into the tree, it will dull your chainsaw.

The best way of taking care of situations like this is by using a plier and pulling out the nail or metal piece.

The logical solution is cutting from another position or discarding the wood completely.

What are the ways to identify instantly a dull chainsaw? 

Chainsaw owners must identify the dullness in the chainsaw, as it is energy consuming and time waste.

Here are a few tips to identify a chainsaw that is dull due to dirt:

  • Apply pressure a lot while cutting
  • Dull chainsaws give smoke out even with proper oiling and produce uneven cuts.
  • A dull chainsaw develops fine sawdust against coarse strands in cutting against the grain.

Running the chainsaw when it has dirt on it dulls the cutting blades affecting the performance.

You may avoid it from happening by cutting 90% of the wood using a chainsaw.

Cut the remaining side using a regular saw, keeping it close to the ground. Use a broom and clean the dust particles.

Elevate the log of wood while cutting and always have a set of chains in reserve in good sharpen condition when you have a lot of cutting work.

Wrapping up

It is clear now using a chainsaw in the dirt is not a recommendation.

To ensure the device’s functioning is proper, you may give regular maintenance.

Yet, you may proceed with cutting if it is unavoidable for you to go through the cutting of dirty wood.

Yet ensure to wear safety gear.

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