Navigating the world of chainsaws can be treacherous with such a vast array of brands, models, and specifications. There are different types of saws for various kinds of work, so it can be difficult to ascertain which one is right for you. We have created this buyer’s guide to aid you in discovering the relevant details about saws so you can be sure to get the best option to suit your needs.
Important Aspects to Consider When Buying a ChainSaw
The primary use of the chainsaw will help dictate what type to purchase. You should also consider the amount of experience you have in using a chainsaw. The type of wood you will be cutting is also important, because different saws work better for hard wood and others for softer woods.
How frequently you’ll be using the saw is also an important factor when shopping around. Safety is paramount as well, so ensuring you have the proper safety features needed will go a long way in protecting you and others.
Key Factors to ExploreThere are five essential attributes to think of when choosing a chainsaw: the guide bar length, gas power or electric power, engine power in volts or amps, safety features, and user strength level.
Guide Bar Length
Guide bar length is measured from the housing to the tip of the chainsaw chain. This measurement is representative of the active cutting area. It indicates the biggest length of wood that the tool can saw through in a single pass. You can use a smaller saw to cut larger pieces of wood, but it will take more than one pass.
For safety, you should ensure that the bar length is two inches longer than the wood you wish to cut. As the bar length increases, it becomes more difficult to operate a saw safely. The saw can become unbalanced, and users can become tired since the longer models are heavier. These issues lead to a higher risk of injuring yourself.
Chainsaws can be an extremely dangerous power tool, and they cause many injuries each year. For this reason, choosing an anti-kickback model can be a good way to ensure you stay safe.
Kickback can occur when the tip of the saw’s guide bar comes into contact with another object or if the bar becomes pinched by wood on either side. Normally the chain moves forward circularly away from you, over the tip of the bar, and then completes the circle by coming back towards you.
Where the chain stops and the force that it is stopped with will determine the severity and direction of the kickback. This sequence of events results in the entire chainsaw swinging out and could injure or kill.
Engine Power Type
Your chainsaw will be powered by gas or electricity. Gas chainsaws have power that is measured in cubic inches or cubic centimeters. The higher the number, the more powerful the engine is. Electric chainsaw power is measured in amps. The higher the amps, the more powerful it is.
Other saws are battery powered, and they are measured in volts. These saws are often smaller and less powerful than their gas or corded counterparts. However, they are great for pruning and light cutting.
Both corded and cordless chainsaw options are available. A cordless saw offers a higher level of mobility. However, the battery can make the machine heavier and can limit the amount of time you are able to use it since you’ll need to recharge it.
Oftentimes, the battery and charger can be a separate purchase from the chainsaw itself, which may be a downside to you.
A corded saw will be lighter, and you won’t be required to refuel it or recharge any batteries.
You will need to purchase a suitable extension cord that can reach the electrical output in your work area. You will be limited in work area related to the length of the extension cord. You’ll also need to take extra care that the cord is not in your way and doesn’t become tangled.
Following basic safety protocol for using a chainsaw can avoid the kickback issue. Another option is to choose a saw that features a chain that is resistant to kickback. Wearing protective equipment is also key.
A simple yet effective way to keep safety at the forefront of any project is to read the owner’s manual for your saw. This paperwork will contain beneficial information on set up, maintenance, assembly, and operation. It is definitely worth a read.
The reason that your strength and fitness levels matter is that it affects your ability to use the saw.
Users with less strength will want a lighter weight model. Using a heavier model could result in damage to your project or yourself.
A twelve-pound chain saw may seem like it isn’t cumbersome, but after holding it out away from your body and cutting for a while, it can start to feel awkward as your muscles tire.
Chainsaws are made for right handed individuals. Lefties may have a hard time since the grip and stance could feel off for them. Make sure you feel comfortable with the saw. You can also check if it is suitable with a popular chainsaw mills.
Buying a chainsaw should be based on your specific project needs, your budget, as well as your physical capabilities. The right saw for one project may not work well for another. You may not want to spend hundreds of dollars on one saw. Your stature is also a factor, since someone who is smaller will not want a cumbersome model.
Other Common ChainSaw Features
Some chainsaws feature anti-vibration components that will reduce the likelihood of you becoming fatigued while operating the saw. They are often more comfortable to use. This is especially true in situations where you have a lot of cutting to do or plan to be working for long periods of time with your saw.
Some chainsaws have a spring assist starter. The spring will reduce the pulling force needed to start a gas-powered chainsaw. This feature can be extremely handy for those that use their saw for work.
Newer models often have an automatic oiler. This feature lubricates the chain for you while you are cutting. They are great because you don’t have to think about it, it just does it for you. Properly lubricating the chain is essential for the efficient and safe use of your saw.
A chain brake is a unique safety feature that can come in handy. This option is designed to stop the chain if the saw come across an unexpected movement or impact. On some chainsaw models, you are able to activate the chain brake manually.
Tool-less chain adjustment makes changing the cutting chain tension an easy and quick process. This feature can be beneficial when cutting different sized trees or clearing out brush.
Some models will include a carrying case which makes transporting your chainsaw easier. You want to be sure that the guide bar and chain are protected while it is stored in between uses. A suitable carrying case will lessen the likelihood of unintentional injuries, damage to the saw, or dulling of the chain.
In closing, the process of selecting a chainsaw can be an arduous process. There are so many models to choose from with a wide range of different specifications. Remembering to keep your project needs, budget, experience, and safety in mind while shopping can help you to select the best saw. We hope you enjoyed this buyer’s guide and review of cheap chainsaws. Please leave us a comment with your thoughts and favorite inexpensive chainsaw models.
The WORX WG303.1 16-inch ChainSaw is a powerful yet lightweight option that is an excellent choice for small cutting jobs.
It is perfect for cutting firewood, tree trimming, clearing brush, and many other uses. This option is electric powered, so there’s no need to worry about harmful emissions or running out of gas.
The WORX WG303.1 ChainSaw arrives fitted with a built-in chain brake to keep you safe by stopping the chain if it somehow makes improper contact with any surface.
This option is an best choice for those new to chainsaws or anyone needing a great saw for casual jobs. It also has a rubber rear handle and features an ergonomic front handle to ensure optimal control and comfort.
14.6 x 19.7 x 8 in
16" Bar Length
14.5 amp motor output
Patented auto-tension chain system
Low kickback bar and built-in chain brake
Automatic oil lubrication and built-in oil reservoir
3-year manufacturer’s warranty
Weighs eleven pounds
May not be suited for bigger jobs
Will need to be recharged since it runs on batteries
The Black and Decker LCS1020B 10-inch 20v MAX Lithium ChainSaw is powered by a 20-volt MAX lithium battery, making it the best option for anyone who wants a cordless saw.
This item features a 10-inch low kickback bar and will allow you to make smooth and fast cuts with ease. This lightweight choice will save you money while remaining powerful for casual jobs.
The Black and Decker LCS1020B 10-inch 20v MAX Lithium Chain Saw features a tool-free tension system allowing for fast adjustments. Weighing in at only 7.2 pounds, the LCS1020B is tough without causing you to become quickly fatigued.
This model has an improved oiling system in place and includes a transparent window which allows you to easily assess the oil level. On the downside, the battery is sold separately.
The GreenWorks DigiPro G-MAX 16-inch Chain Saw uses lithium-ion technology to produce a cordless saw option. This item has thirty percent more torque and seventy percent less vibration than traditional gas-powered models.
It features a 16-inch heavy duty Oregon bar and chain. The GreenWorks DigiPro also includes a chain brake and an automatic oiler for safety and convenience.
The GreenWorks DigiPro G-MAX 16-inch ChainSaw is the best option for those wanting a powerful saw that is cordless and it’s durable and affordable.
This model is extremely quiet when compared to other chainsaws. The battery and charger are, however, sold separately.
The Timberpro 62cc 20-inch Petrol ChainSaw is designed for both professional and personal use at home. This model features a 20-inch bar and is packaged with two chains, a carrying bag, a tool kit, and a detailed user’s manual.
The Timberpro is a large, powerful gas chain saw that’s built to last and tackle tough jobs.
The Timberpro 62cc 20-inch Petrol ChainSaw is the best choice for individuals seeking a gas-powered saw option that is still inexpensive.
This option is a great saw for those needing to cut down larger trees or have a chainsaw for their professional work. The chains are very sharp and have an automatic lubrication system as well.
15.1 x 10 x 11 in
Assisted starting system
Automatic oil lubrication
2-year manufacturer’s warranty
Packaged with lots of extras
At 15.5 pounds, it may be too large for some people
The Oregon CS1500 Self-Sharpening Electric ChainSaw is the only electric powered, corded chainsaw on the market that features a chain that can sharpen itself. It works by pulling the red PowerSharp lever, which sharpens the chain in as little as three seconds.
This model starts easily with a quick pull of the trigger and is crafted with an 18-inch reduced kickback guide bar and chain. It requires only minimal maintenance.
The Oregon CS1500 is extremely quiet and is actually silent in between cuts. This chainsaw is a heavier model, but it is incredibly powerful.
It’s an excellent choice for anyone that wants an electrically powered chainsaw that requires less maintenance and no sharpening whatsoever. This chainsaw has a great ergonomic design, making it easy to handle and operate.
18 x 37.5 x 10.5 in
15 amp motor output
18-inch reduced kickback guide bar and chain
Low maintenance, self-sharpening
Tool-less tension system for chain
Integrated chain brake for safety
2-year consumer and 1-year professional manufacturer’s warranty
Essentially, a chainsaw is an incredibly effective and efficient power tool usually used to cut trees and branches. The saw uses a powerful engine, which is also referred to as a power head. The power head supplies the necessary force for the metal chain which is driven by a centrifugal clutch. The chain spins around the guide bar within a groove at extremely high speeds. When the fast spinning chain makes contact with wood, its razor-sharp teeth drag across the surface, which cuts the wood. Unfortunately, the chain cannot be guarded, making chainsaws extremely dangerous tools.
Saws are utilized by a vast array of individuals from homeowners to carpenters. They can be useful to gardeners, firefighters, loggers, and arborists as well. There are even people that use chainsaws to create art by sawing into wood to create sculptures.
There are many instances where a chainsaw can be helpful. Maybe you are working on a home improvement project or trimming back trees and branches for gardening. You may need one for work if you work in an industry like logging or carpentry. Understanding what job or project the saw is required to do will aid in choosing the best one.