Whether you want to start using a chainsaw for cutting down trees, trimming branches, or preparing for the winter by cutting logs into pieces, knowing how to use a chainsaw is a skill set that when used properly will save you a lot of time and energy. This is why we created this article in which we will walk you through what it takes to wield a chainsaw and give you some of the best chainsaw tips for beginners. Now, let’s jump straight into it!
Chainsaw Tips To Get You Started
There are a lot of steps and tips you have to go through if you want to have a solid base for your further chainsawing career but for starters getting to know the essential ones is just as good. Here are they:
- Get to know your saw
- Check the chain
- Top off the fuel tank or batteries
- Starting the chainsaw
- Lubricate & maintain the chainsaw
- Felling trees
- Always keep safety in mind
Get to know your saw
Always take your time to familiarize yourself with your tool. Make sure you read the users manual before you start working with a brand new chainsaw, as different models might have different ways of operating them. The throttle lock, stop controls and chain catchers, as well as other safety features vary from model to model.
Check the chain
Replacing the chain every now and then when it gets worn out is always a good idea, especially if you saw a lot. Even if its brand new, you should always check whether the chain has the proper tension to it before you start cutting. New chains need a re-tension after a few times of using them.
Top off the fuel tank or batteries
When refuelling your chainsaw make sure it is placed on a flat surface and there are no open fires nearby. When recharging the batteries make sure you don’t overcharge them as this can shorten their life expectancy. Try to use environmentally friendly fuel types and lubrication oils if possible.
Starting the chainsaw
When starting the chainsaw you should always have it lying on a flat surface. Use the kickback protection feature (if present) to prevent the chain from rotating when you start the chainsaw up.
If you are starting in cold weather pull the choke out completely (in gas powered models). Temperature doesn’t affect electrical models as much which is one of their many benefits.
If you want to check out the newest and best electric chainsaws on the market, click here to go to our Buyer’s Guide!
Lubricate & maintain the chainsaw
Lubrication is needed as there are moving parts to this tool. Check it from time to time and when the chain doesn’t seem lubricated top the oil off.
The chain will also need sharpening from time to time, especially if you cut a lot in wet conditions. The cooling fins and air intakes also need periodical maintenance by cleaning them well. If the cutting tooth is less than 4mm then you might want to consider replacing the chain.
Screws, bolts, and nuts must also be checked periodically and if they are loosened you must tighten them up.
Whenever you are about to start felling trees you will need to familiarize yourself with the local environmental regulations as well as the state-wide ones.
Weather conditions like heavy winds, snow storms or rain shouldn’t be overlooked and you shouldn’t cut in such conditions.
Always decide the direction in which the tree is going to fall beforehand and clear that path ensuring there are no animals on its path. Here you should always take wind direction into account.
Never cut through the tree at a height higher than your shoulders.
Learn how to cut wood with a chainsaw by clicking here.
Always keep safety in mind
When using a chainsaw you should always keep some distance from other people or animals. When felling trees this is especially valid and you should always check for nearby people or animals.
Knowing the safety protocol when cutting with a chainsaw is one of the most important parts of the learning process which is often overlooked. Let’s take a moment to go through some of the points that you need to keep in mind when working around chainsaws.
- Always wear a hard hat, steel-toed boots, face shield, earmuffs, and close-fitting apparel.
- Keep your chainsaw well-maintained.
- Always start your chainsaw from the position in which you refuel it.
- Never cut with a loose chain
- Don’t lift the chainsaw above your shoulders to make a cut
- Don’t smoke or be around fire when refuelling
- Always keep a first aid kit around you
Now, let’s check out some of the most common questions when it comes to this topic.
Do you need oil for an electric chainsaw?
Electric chainsaws also use oil for their work but it is just for the bar and the chain. There are special lubrication oils that you can get for this particular task. Lubrication is especially important if you are cutting through dry wood. We do not recommend using reclaimed motor oils or even vegetable ones as this can be damaging to the oil system of your tool. To find out the best oil match for your chainsaw consult the company’s support center or the user manual.
What is the best chainsaw bar length?
There is no such thing as a perfect bar length as every saw comes with a different one depending on what you want to use it for. Longer bar chainsaws can easily cut through trees with bigger diameters on a single pass. Some homeowners might need something smaller along the lines of 6-10 inches which is enough to cut through logs and timber wood. Typically, electric chainsaws don’t go beyond 12 inches, as the gasoline models often reach 20 inches of bar length.
Knowing which are the chainsaw tips for beginners will ensure that you have a proper start to this craft and you will be able to steadily progress after that. The only thing you must never forget is to always keep safety as your number one priority even if you are not the one working with the chainsaw. Everything else is secondary and will take some time until you are entirely used to handling this wood cutting tool.