Chainsaws come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. You might need something with a bit more power that can tackle large jobs, or you might just want a moderate tool for the occasional branch trimming. Regardless of what you’re looking for, our list of the best chainsaws will help you find a good fit for your needs.
Best Battery-Powered Cordless Chainsaw
EGO 56V 350mm Cordless Brushless Power+ Chainsaw
- Automatic chain oiler
- Made out of weather-resistant materials
- Reversible Bar
- A bit heavier than most electric models
- Battery not as long-lasting as some others
Most battery models aren’t suited for cutting anything that’s thicker than a thumb-sized branch, but the EGO CS1400E might actually surprise you with how powerful it can be. You still won’t be able to cut down any redwood trees, but the 14-inch bar and the 6,300 rpm motor can more than manage to cut down logs and branches that are up to a foot in thickness.
Battery-powered chainsaws are known for being easy to start and operate, and this model is no different. It can’t be used for very long since the battery will run out, but that’s an issue that’s present in every battery-powered chainsaw rather than a failing of this particular model.
Realistically speaking, this isn’t a tool for long periods of log cutting, but if you’re looking for a tool that you can use for some yard work, the fully charged 2,5 Ah battery will likely last you for more than 2 hours.
Best Electric Corded Chainsaw
Makita 400mm Electric Chainsaw
- Double Insulation
- Kickback brake
- Ergonomic soft grip
- Can’t be used without a nearby power source
- Assembly takes a bit of trial and error
The Makita might be the most beginner-friendly chainsaw model on our list. It comes with several safety features like the motor overload protector, the fully sealed bearings, and the safety switch that provide as much protection to the user as possible with tools like this. You also get an ergonomic front-grip handle that gives you a bit more leverage. Moreover, the 16-inch blade 1,800 W motor provides a decent amount of kick.
The strength of corded chainsaws is that they produce no fumes, and their motors run a lot more quietly than their petrol-powered counterparts. The tradeoff is that you’ll always need to have an extension cord or a power socket nearby, which means that you won’t be able to use this particular model if you’re outdoors and there isn’t a convenient source of electricity nearby.
Best Mini Chainsaw
Bosch Cordless Micro NanoBlade Saw Easy Cut 12
- A decent amount of power relative to the size of the tool
- Easy to transport and use
- Ergonomic handle with easy to press On/Off switch
- The blade will need to be replaced frequently
- Jams can occur due to dust buildup
The palm-sized Bosch Micro Nanoblade chainsaw is the single most convenient way to get rid of any tree branches that might be giving you trouble. It packs a decent amount of power for such a small item, and it’s perfect for outdoor branch cutting or indoor DIY work with wooden planks. The narrow shape of the blade allows you to make drill cuts as well as standard linear cuts, while the 12 Volt Li-ion battery can be recharged pretty quickly.
The Bosch is still a chainsaw and certain safety precautions should still be met when using it. Luckily, the tool itself comes with safety measures in the form of a hand strap that ensures you won’t accidentally drop it and a protective guard on the right side that can be placed against the piece of wood that you’re cutting. Furthermore, there’s a protective cap that you can place on the blade when you’re not using it, thus improving its longevity.
Best Budget Chainsaw
Ozito 1800W 356mm Electric Chainsaw
- Automatic oiler
- Bucking spikes
- Trigger safety lock
- Not as powerful as other models
- Only intended for occasional use and isn’t suitable for constant use
The Ozito has a chain brake that can protect the user in the event of an unexpected kickback, and it even has tool-free chain tension, which makes adjusting or replacing the chain a lot less perilous. This chainsaw also automatically oils the chain while the tool is working in order to ensure that it performs at its peak. It goes without saying that it’s unlikely to jam or snag.
The motor itself isn’t particularly powerful, but it can still manage to cut down moderately thick tree stumps and help you with removing any sort of foliage. Overall, the size and power of this chainsaw are much more suited for occasional yard work rather than constant logging. However, if you’re just looking for a small, convenient, cheap tool that you can use for everyday tasks around the home, then this is a great choice for you.
Best Heavy-Duty Chainsaw
Husqvarna 455R-AT Rancher AutoTune 2.6kW 508mm Petrol Chainsaw
- Snap-lock cylinder cover
- Air purge functionality
- Angled front handle for better grip and control
- The power output requires a lot of petrol
- Difficult to wield if you’re not used to the weight and the kick of the motor
The Rancher model comes with a chain brake, which isn’t all that uncommon and can be found in most commercial chainsaws, but it also has a few additional features that improve performance. You get both choke and stop controls that minimize the force required to start the motor without flooding it. You also get quicker and safer turn-off times as well, effectively making this tool a lot more responsive than most chainsaw models.
The Husqvarna Rancher has 9000 RPM, a 20-inch blade, and a torque output of 3,2 Nm, which in laymen’s terms simply means that this chainsaw can cut through pretty much everything that’s in front of it.
On the other hand, this power output goes through quite a bit of petrol and it’s frankly much more horsepower than you’d usually need. However, if you need to get rid of some thick logs and need a reliable tool for the job, then this is one of the best chainsaws for you.
Best Premium Chainsaw
Husqvarna 390XP-24 4.8kW 609mm Petrol Chainsaw
- Incredibly powerful
- Adjustable oil pumps for effective chain lubrication
- Side-mounted chain tensioner
- The device is heavy, which can affect the handling unless you’re used to it
While the previous entry on our list might have seemed like overkill for your average everyday use, this model actually cranks it up a notch further. Everything from the 24-inch blade to the vibration-dampened carburettor is designed to give you the maximum possible power output while also ensuring that you can handle it easily. You also get a bit more durability thanks to the magnesium crankcase and a bit more safety thanks to the chain break feature.
As you might imagine, this chainsaw isn’t for cutting branches and it has too much power for the average person. However, if you have some prior experience with equipment like this, and you’re looking to make quick work of any trees or stumps on your property, then this is one of the best chainsaws that you can find for the job.
Best Chainsaw Brands
Husqvarna is a supplier of petrol chainsaws, and it has a large range of different models and types. You can easily find a more moderate 16-inch blade with a medium-sized motor if you’re looking to cut down a few smaller trees in your backyard, and you can also find a 24-inch gas guzzler that can cut down virtually anything.
Makita is actually an even older name in the industry and while they started out with making gas-powered chainsaws, their repertoire has significantly increased since the company was founded back in the 1920s. Today, you can easily find almost any sort of chainsaw that you might be looking for in a Makita catalogue, and most of them are going to be very reasonably priced as well.
How To Choose The Right Chainsaw
Battery or Petrol Chainsaw?
Battery chainsaws are significantly less noisy than the petrol variant and they don’t produce any nauseous fumes either, which means that they can be used pretty much anywhere. The issue is that the battery usually runs out pretty quickly after continual use, and they’re generally much less powerful than the alternative.
Petrol chainsaws need to be filled up before they can be used, and since most of them use more than 2L of gas an hour, and they need to have regular oil changes and calibrations, they’re not the easiest tools to maintain. However, they come with a lot more range when it comes to cutting power, and they can handle the more difficult tasks that the electrical chainsaws aren’t equipped for.
What Makes a Good Chainsaw?
Chainsaws are powerful tools and can really be dangerous if not handled with care, so make sure that your model has a decent handle, allowing you to get a firm grip and properly control the power output. Speaking of potential dangers, the chainsaw should come with safety features such as a chain brake, a handguard, a vibration dampener, and maybe even a scabbard for the blade.
Aside from these factors, the only thing that you really need to focus on is finding a chainsaw that has tool-free chain tension that can allow you to maintain and replace the chain much easier. An automatic oiler is also a rather important feature so that the chain can run optimally for longer.
The choice of power supply depends on your specific needs. Electrical chainsaws run out of power very quickly, but they can be recharged just as quickly. Petrol chainsaws on the other hand can be used continually for much longer, but they can consume a lot of petrol.