Which Is the Best Homeowner Chainsaw? Mechanopedia’s Top Picks

As a homeowner, having a chainsaw can be very useful. You can use it to cut down trees around your house or trim them. There are numerous other uses too. This is why you might want to get a chainsaw to take care of these tasks. However, how can you ensure that you find the best homeowner chainsaw? Is there an absolute best homeowner chainsaw that you can get?

Well, in this article, we’ll be going over both of these questions to help you narrow down your search as much as possible and save your time. After all, the last thing you need is to spend wads of cash on a professional chainsaw that you won’t even use that often.

First of all, we’ll be going over the best homeowner chainsaws that you can find on the market. Secondly, we will provide you with a buyer’s guide to help you find the best homeowner chainsaw by going over the different aspects that you need to take into account when looking for a new chainsaw.

We’ve done our research, so you don’t have to. Once you read this article, your mind will have been made up about which one is the best homeowner chainsaw for you. And now, without further ado, let us take a look at our top picks for the best homeowner chainsaws on today’s market.

RECOMMENDED
Husqvarna 440E 16-Inch 40.9cc 2-Stroke X-Torq Gas Powered Chain Saw
BUDGET OPTION
WORX WG304.1 Chain Saw 18-Inch 4 15.0 Amp
Greenworks 12-Inch 40V Cordless Chainsaw, 2.0 AH Battery Included 20262
BLACK+DECKER Electric Chainsaw, 18-Inch, 15-Amp (CS1518)
Poulan Pro 967185102 PP4218A 42cc Assembled Chainsaw with Case, 18-Inch
Husqvarna 440E 16-Inch 40.9cc 2-Stroke X-Torq Gas Powered Chain Saw
WORX WG304.1 Chain Saw 18-Inch 4 15.0 Amp
Greenworks 12-Inch 40V Cordless Chainsaw, 2.0 AH Battery Included 20262
BLACK+DECKER Electric Chainsaw, 18-Inch, 15-Amp (CS1518)
Poulan Pro 967185102 PP4218A 42cc Assembled Chainsaw with Case, 18-Inch
Price not available
$68.20
$150.62
$96.03
$429.64
RECOMMENDED
Husqvarna 440E 16-Inch 40.9cc 2-Stroke X-Torq Gas Powered Chain Saw
Husqvarna 440E 16-Inch 40.9cc 2-Stroke X-Torq Gas Powered Chain Saw
Price not available
BUDGET OPTION
WORX WG304.1 Chain Saw 18-Inch 4 15.0 Amp
WORX WG304.1 Chain Saw 18-Inch 4 15.0 Amp
$68.20
Greenworks 12-Inch 40V Cordless Chainsaw, 2.0 AH Battery Included 20262
Greenworks 12-Inch 40V Cordless Chainsaw, 2.0 AH Battery Included 20262
$150.62
BLACK+DECKER Electric Chainsaw, 18-Inch, 15-Amp (CS1518)
BLACK+DECKER Electric Chainsaw, 18-Inch, 15-Amp (CS1518)
$96.03
Poulan Pro 967185102 PP4218A 42cc Assembled Chainsaw with Case, 18-Inch
Poulan Pro 967185102 PP4218A 42cc Assembled Chainsaw with Case, 18-Inch
$429.64

The Best Homeowner Chainsaw – Our Picks

#1 – Husqvarna 440E Gas Homeowner Chainsaw

This is the best homeowner chainsaw overall. It has everything you would expect from a good chainsaw and then some. It’s lightweight, easy to handle, and you don’t need any tools to tighten the chain on it. In fact, the tool-less chain tightening feature works so well that you can easily tighten the chain without the need to put down the chainsaw which is pretty impressive, considering that a lot of chainsaws have a much worse version of this feature.

Another thing that made us crown this as the best homeowner chainsaw is how easy it is to use. The start-up process is effortless if you stick to the manual that’s given with the chainsaw. Speaking of the manual, we highly recommend you read through the whole thing since it will save you a lot of time and trouble. It should include everything you need to be able to use the chainsaw proficiently.

All in all, this is the best homeowner, chainsaw. It has so many great and useful features that place it at the top of its class.

What we like about it

There’s a lot to like about the Husqvarna 440E. For starters, it’s lightweight and easy to handle. Moreover, the tool-less chain tensioning feature works like a charm. There’s also a quick-release on the air filter which is useful.

#2 – Worx WG304.1 Electric Homeowner’s Chainsaw

While gas-powered chainsaws still reign supreme over electric chainsaws, the Worx WG304.1 is a truly excellent electric chainsaw. It tries to remedy the lack of power, that electric chainsaws are notorious for, by having a powerful motor. You can use it to cut down and clean up the fallen tree, branches, or limbs. You’ll also be surprised to hear that it has an 18-inch bar which is two inches longer than the majority of gas-powered chainsaws of the same caliber.

Another very nifty thing about the Worx WG304.1 is the fact that it comes already assembly right out of the box. There’s also an automatic oil lubrication system with a window level indicator on the oil reservoir. All of these features will save you a ton of time and are very convenient. We’re also happy to report that this chainsaw does not consume a lot of oil. Even after a long cutting session, it didn’t need a refill.

Additionally, the Worx WG304.1 is equipped with an automatic tension feature. However, it isn’t consistent, so you might need to adjust the chain tension from time to time manually. You’ll find that this is a recurrent theme in most chainsaws, so this is not that big of an issue when putting in perspective. Another problem is short-circuiting. Since the chainsaw works intermittently, you might experience some electrical short.

Overall, while this might not be the best homeowner chainsaw in terms of raw quality, it offers unrivaled value and is a worthwhile option for anyone on a tight budget.

What we like about it

We were really impressed by the power of this electric chainsaw. Additionally, the fact that it came fully assembled right out of the gate, coupled with numerous other time-saving features, is very much appreciated. All of that, along with the Worx label on the side (which is a rival of big brands like DeWalt and Stihl), makes the WG304.1 a solid candidate for the title of the best homeowner chainsaw.

#3 – Greenworks 20262 Homeowner Chainsaw

If power is not your top priority, you might want something lighter and more practical. This is where the Greenworks 20262 comes in. While battery-powered chainsaws lag behind both electric and gas-powered ones, this is still a good chainsaw to get if you’re not going to do any heavy-duty work with it.

The battery charges rather quickly. And the chainsaw comes with an automatic oiler as well as a tool-less chain tensioning mechanism. Since this is a battery-powered chainsaw, it is both lightweight and easy to handle. If you’re only looking to do some light trimming, then this might be the best homeowner chainsaw for you.

With that said, it will only be useful in light cutting applications. If you try to push beyond its limits, you’ll risk breaking it altogether. Moreover, it is rather slow so you wouldn’t want to use this on any solid branches since it will take a long time and still do a shoddy job in the end.

We have also noticed that the oil reservoir leaks a lot, which is very annoying. We recommend that you always place it over something that will catch the leaking oil in order to avoid unnecessary oil stains during storage.

What we like about it

The Greenworks 20262 is a decent battery-powered chainsaw. It has a fast-charging battery as well as a tool-less chain tensioning mechanism. If you’re looking for something that you’ll only use every once in a while on very light tasks, then this might be the best homeowner chainsaw for you.

#4 – BLACK+DECKER CS1518 Corded Chainsaw

The BLACK+DECKER CS1518 is a corded electric chainsaw which means that it beats the Greenworks 20262 in terms of power. However, we still put it lower on the list because it has some flaws that can prove to be rather obnoxious.

On the bright side, this chainsaw has decent power, is pretty lightweight and easy to handle. It also helps that it comes with an 18-inch bar and chain as well as an automatic oiler and tool-less tensioning. With that said, it can be oil-hungry, so you need to keep an eye on the oil reserves to make sure it still has some.

While the tool-less chain tensioning system actually works, we found that it is tedious and tricky to use. For starters, you will need to set it up first, and that process includes assembling the parts. It doesn’t help that the instructions can be vague and sometimes even misleading. This is a big deal since there are numerous chainsaws that come already assembled and even those that don’t come assembled have clear instructions at the very least.

And lastly, the biggest offender is the fact that you aren’t even guaranteed to get a working chainsaw right out of the gate. You might get one that doesn’t work so you’ll need to replace it. What’s even worse is that the process is also not guaranteed to get you a fully working chainsaw.

What we like about it

While this is not the best homeowner chainsaw, it still has some merits. Its lightweight and well-balanced design are two things we liked about the BLACK+DECKER CS1518.

#5 – Poulan Pro PP4218A Homeowner Chainsaw

Coming in at last place, this is as far as we can get from the best homeowner chainsaw. The Poulan Pro PP4218A is a refurbished chainsaw which should already be alarming as the majority of refurbished chainsaws don’t work in the first place.

There’s also the fact that you’ll need to go through a grueling assembly process with instructions that seem like they’re written in an alien language. What makes this even worse is how you might be even wasting your time since the chances that the chainsaw you got actually work is vanishingly small.

In the unlikely case that you get this to work, you’ll immediately notice how jittery and janky it is. Don’t even count on it to last you for long as it’s already running on fumes from the start.

But wait, there’s more! Poulan seems to be already aware of how bad of a deal this truly is. They realize that this is just a cash grab and so they don’t want people to get their money back after they realize that they’ve practically been robbed. How do they do this? That’s by offering some of the worst customer services and support imaginable. Most of them are not willing to help you, and you’re better off just buying another, better chainsaw.

All in all, avoid this chainsaw like the plague.

What we like about it

There’s hardly anything going for this chainsaw. But in the off chance that you get it working, you can get ‘some use’ out of it before it eventually dies. That’s why we don’t recommend this model over the rest of the units on our list.

Choosing the Best Homeowner Chainsaw – Buying Guide

Thanks to the internet, you can shop online and buy almost everything you want. However, when it comes to chainsaws, this isn’t the best way to do so. While some models offer free shipping, some of the cheaper models can have misleading selling pages, and you might get an entirely different model from the one shown on the page. If something like that happens, you’ll find that you’ll have to go through a long procedure, jumping from person to person in order to get your money back, which is a bad situation to be in.

For this reason, we recommend you try out the chainsaw before you buy it. After all, chainsaws are not a light investment, and you need to be sure that what you’re getting is good and comfortable. You can find chainsaws in most hardware stores which will allow you to get a feel for each chainsaw there and confidently choose the best homeowner chainsaw. Moreover, a physical transaction is usually less risky.

Other than that, in order to be able to choose the best homeowner chainsaw, you’ll need to know what to look for. In this buyer’s guide, we’ll be going through the different specs that you need to take into account.

Warranty

Even the best homeowner chainsaw is prone to some mechanical issues every once in a while. In order to keep yourself covered, you’ll want a chainsaw with a good warranty. It’s best to be prepared for these problems and know what to expect from customer support. This can save you a lot of time and money.

Personal Protective Equipment

It’s important that you use the appropriate safety gear when you’re working with a chainsaw so that you don’t get harmed in case of any mishap. Such equipment includes protective eyewear like safety goggle or glasses. We recommend getting shatterproof protective eyewear as well.

You also need to keep your limbs protected while you work. You’ll need to wear heavy-duty braids made of specialized nylon. They should be able to prevent the chainsaw from hurting you as specialized nylon is made to catch and entangle the chainsaw before it does any harm to your body. This kind of work pants is known as chainsaw chaps.

As for footwear, we recommend getting steel-toed boots which should keep your toes and feet safe even if something heavy falls on them. We also recommend getting earplugs, leather gloves, as well as a filter over your mouth and nose. Chainsaws can be very loud, which is why you’ll need to the earplugs. The filter will prevent you from inhaling harmful dust, and leather gloves will keep your hands protected.

While this might seem like a heavy investment, your health and body are priceless. The last thing you want is to lose a limb or harm your body. Safety should always be your top priority when you’re working with power tools.

Keeping Your Chainsaw in Good Condition

Keeping your chainsaw well-oiled is crucial to producing good results. A properly oiled chainsaw will go through wood like a hot knife through butter. On the other hand, if you neglect your chainsaw, you’ll find that it will start to jam and make jagged cuts.

There’s also the fact that you need to sharpen the chain as it will get dull over time. If you don’t mind doing some maintenance, you can save yourself some time and money in the long run by getting some files and learning how to use them to sharpen the chain. Otherwise, you can always go to buy a new chain.

Final Buying Tips

One of the things that you should always do is keep the receipt after you make your purchase. If you experience any malfunctions and issues, or just want your money back, you will need the receipt as proof to be able to return or exchange the chainsaw.

If you’re shopping online, you should always print the final page which shows your order details, included what you ordered, the shipping method, the payment details as well as other information. You can use this information later on if you get duped as proof that you got mislead.

Picking the Best Homeowner Chainsaws – Frequently Asked Questions

What Makes the Best Homeowner Chainsaw?

While the best homeowner chainsaw might differ from person to person, there are some common features that make a chainsaw good no matter who you are.

For instance, a good chainsaw must be able to cut wood easily. While this might seem like a given, it is not always the case. It isn’t hard to come by a chainsaw that does a very poor job of cutting wood, or even worse, not being able to cut it at all.

If your chainsaw is delivering jagged cuts, then it might be that the chainsaw is not designed for that type of material. However, if you’ve been using it for a while and it this problem starts, then it might be that the chainsaw is dying and you should either try to fix it or just get another one altogether.

Additionally, any good chainsaw will need to have good safety features. We’ll go over these features in the next question. And lastly, there’s the chain tensioning system. The problem with most chainsaws that have such a system is that the bar and chain tensioning mechanism isn’t properly correlated, which means that tensioning one thing will loosen the other and vice versa which makes the whole mechanism obnoxious and more of an annoyance than anything.

Which Safety Features Should I Look For?

As we all know, chainsaws are very dangerous tools that can cause serious harm to both the user and anyone near them. This is why it’s essential to make sure that the chainsaw is equipped with good safety features such as a chain brake, which will stop the chainsaw in case anything bad happens. These brakes are usually built into the front handguard. Once pulled back, the brake is disengaged. If it’s released, the brake becomes engaged, and the chain stops.

Verdict

In short, finding the best homeowner chainsaw comes down to your needs, your budget, as well as your preference. However, there are universal factors that you always need to consider. We hope that this article has provided you with the necessary information which will allow you to choose the best homeowner chainsaw.

What are you waiting for, fellow woodworker? The best homeowner chainsaw for your garage is just a few clicks away!

References:

  • https://www.stihl.com/p/media/download/uk-en/STIHL_Chain_Saw_Safety_Manual.pdf
  • https://www.wikihow.com/Operate-a-Chainsaw
  • Our own experience

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