Husqvarna mower pull cord. Best Battery Chainsaw Reviews 2023 | Best Cordless Chainsaws
Have a Ryobi Battery That Won’t Charge? You Can Fix That.
Lithium ion batteries are a wondrous invention that are lightweight and long lasting. But it’s infuriating when the battery won’t recharge. You stick the battery in the charger and. nothing. Guess what? You can fix these batteries that appear to be completely dead. Read on.
This post is NOT sponsored by Ryobi. They do not approve of or endorse this method for fixing a Ryobi battery. AT all.
One of two things are going to happen as you read this post. You will either unfollow me due to my pathological boringness or. you will propose marriage. So get ready to act accordingly.
If you have any sort of cordless power tool, but especially one powered by a Ryobi 18V battery, you have no doubt encountered the dreaded flashing red charger light.
And if you haven’t. you will.
It inevitably goes like this. you run to the basement to grab your cordless drill because after 10 years of thinking about it, you’re finally going to build that 4 level, Tudor style treehouse with kitchenette.
Or you’re going to hang a picture.
Either way you put your battery in the charger and all you get is a flashing red light, which according to the label on the charger means your battery is defective. It isn’t just dead. It’s defective.
I’m here to tell you you it isn’t. You probably left it in the charger too long which drains the battery.
Your battery is fine. It just needs a little boost.
You Can Fix a Rechargeable Battery That Won’t Take a Charge.
You heard me right. You do NOT have to buy a new 50 battery. You do not have to call the company and swear at them because this stupid defective battery is only 2 weeks old. (although by all means feel free to do so) You do not have to wait until they ship you a replacement battery to finish your project. You can get that battery up and working in about 5 minutes.
NOTE: First try pulse charging.
Pulse charge your battery by plugging and unplugging your charger (with the battery in it) for 10 seconds. Try this a few times. If it doesn’t correct the problem, continue on with this tutorial.
How to Fix an 18V Battery
What You Need
- A multimeter. (this is actually optional but helpful. if you don’t have one don’t worry, you can still fix your battery)
Note: If you aren’t used to doing this sort of thing, or using things like a multimeter this is going to seem crazy and hard and way out of your DIY league. It isn’t.
Step 1. Cut the end off of your AC adapter. That’s right. Just cut it off. It’s for a 10 year old cell phone, you’re never going to use it again anyway. It’s frankly kind of weird that you saved it to begin with.
Step 2. Separate and strip off 1 of each wire. You have just made booster cables! Good for you.
Black wire = negative Striped or solid white wire = positive
IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO NOT MIX THE TWO UP.
Step 3. Remove the screws holding the battery together.
For Ryobi batteries it’s a star shaped screw head like the one below.
A few years ago I bought a kit of small screwdriver heads from Amazon that has every small, weird, head you’d ever need.
There’s a hidden screw under a piece of plastic. You need to pry the plastic off to get at the screw underneath. I used a very thin screwdriver to pry it off.
Step 4. Pull the top off of the battery case.
Step 5. Remove the 2 plastic side pieces. They’re the things you press in to remove your battery from your drill.
Step 6. Lift the battery pack out.
Step 7. Set the Multimeter to read volts. For testing an 18 volt battery choose the 20 volts setting. This will give you the most accurate reading. (If you don’t have a multimeter skip to Step 9 and hope for the best)
Volts are symbolized by a V with one or two straight lines over it on a multimeter so it’s that section of the multimeter that you use. The section under the V with the straight line(s). Not the squiggly line. The straight line.
Step 8. Touching the red probe to the positive (red) terminal and the black probe to the negative (black) terminal, read the voltage shown on the multimeter. In my case the battery was carrying a charge of 0.06 volts. Which is almost nothing, but not completely nothing.
Step 9. Plug your AC adapter in and using the wires, boost your dead battery. Just touch the black wire to the negative terminal (the one with the black wire going to it) and the white wire (or striped wire) to the positive terminal (the one with the red wire going to it). Do this on and off for approximately a minute.
Apparently lithium ion batteries should be pulse charged. Which means you hold your wires down for 15 seconds or so, then release them. Then hold them down again. Over and over.
DOUBLE CHECK THAT YOU ARE TOUCHING POSITIVE TO POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE TO NEGATIVE.
Step 10. Test your the voltage on your battery pack again. It should be higher than it was before boosting. (Again, if you don’t have a multimeter don’t worry about this. you’ll just have to press on without one)
Mine went from 0.06 volts to 7.58 volts after a minute long boosting session.
Step 11. Put the plastic cover back on the battery pack (just the part that goes into the charger) and set your battery on the charger to see if it will take a charge.
If you still only get a red flashing light and the battery won’t charge, boost the battery some more. I find the battery charger will recognize that the battery is good again when you boost it to between 10 and 14 volts.
Just keep repeating the pulse boosting and testing the battery until it will finally be recognized by the charger and you get the green light.
To those of you who found this subject matter to be on par with spending 3 hours in a waiting room, sorry ’bout that.
For the rest of you? I know exactly how you feel. I felt the same way. Let me know exactly how elated you were after you brought your first battery back to life in the Комментарии и мнения владельцев section.
Here’s a 3 minute tutorial video showing me as I fix my own battery.
How to Fix a Ryobi 18v Rechargeable Battery
You have an almost brand new Ryobi battery that the charger won’t recognize and won’t charge. Here’s how to fix that.
NOTE: Before doing all this, first try to pulse charge your battery by plugging and unplugging your charger (with the battery in it) for 10 seconds. Try this a few times. If it doesn’t correct the problem, continue on with this tutorial.
Cut the end off of your AC adapter. That’s right. Just cut it off. It’s for a 10 year old cell phone, you’re never going to use it again anyway. It’s frankly kind of weird that you saved it to begin with.
Remove the screws holding the battery together. There’s a hidden screw under a piece of plastic. You need to pry the plastic off to get at the screw underneath. I used a very thin screwdriver to pry it off.
Remove the 2 plastic side pieces. They’re the things you press in to remove your battery from your drill.
Set the Multimeter to read volts. For testing an 18 volt battery choose the 20 volts setting. This will give you the most accurate reading. (If you don’t have a multimeter skip to Step 9 and hope for the best)
Touching the red probe to the positive (red) terminal and the black probe to the negative (black) terminal, read the voltage shown on the multimeter. In my case the battery was carrying a charge of 0.06 volts. Which is almost nothing, but not completely nothing.
Plug your AC adapter in and using the wires, boost your dead battery. Just touch the black wire to the negative terminal (the one with the black wire going to it) and the white wire (or striped wire) to the positive terminal (the one with the red wire going to it). Do this on and off for approximately a minute. DOUBLE CHECK THAT YOU ARE TOUCHING POSITIVE TO POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE TO NEGATIVE.
Test your the voltage on your battery pack again. It should be higher than it was before boosting. IF IT IS NOT, THEN STOP. YOUR CELL COULD BE DAMAGED AND CONTINUING COULD BE DANGEROUS.
Put the plastic cover back on the battery pack (just the part that goes into the charger) and set your battery on the charger to see if it will take a charge. If you still only get a red flashing light and the battery won’t charge, boost the battery some more. I find the battery charger will recognize that the battery is good again when you boost it to between 10 and 14 volts.
Repeat the pulse boosting and testing the battery until it will finally be recognized by the charger and you get the green light.
Best Battery Chainsaw Reviews 2023 | Best Cordless Chainsaws
Boy, did we open a can of worms when we started searching and testing to determine the best battery-powered chainsaw models. Not that long ago, there weren’t that many cordless chainsaws, and even fewer had high enough performance to warrant replacing gas saws.
Fast forward to today and cordless chainsaws meet and even exceed gas performance all the way up to 20-inch models. Most recently, saws hit the market that can replace gas in the farm and ranch class. Our team of experts got together to hash out which cordless chainsaws are the best in 2023.
Want even more chainsaw recommendations? Check out our Best Chainsaw main page for options including gas, battery, and electric models!
Best Battery-Powered Chainsaw for Pros
STIHL 36V Brushless 20-Inch Chainsaw MSA 300 C-O
Pros have more options than ever before and that includes 20-inch cordless chainsaws. Of the ones available, Sithl is likely the most anticipated battery-powered chainsaw for professionals in a tight battle (DeWALT and Greenworks Commercial also have 20-inch models). Aside from hitting the 20-inch mark, it has the power to replace farm and ranch class gas saws and, of course, is backed by STIHL’s dealer service network.
The saw has 3 performance settings so you have options when you want to prioritize runtime over power. It has an LED screen that displays power status, mode, chain brake position, and has a low oil alert. For those of you managing inventory, it’s also connected 2 A compatible.
STIHL introduced the AP 500 S battery along with the saw, giving the MSA 300 C-O an advanced power source to pull its high performance from.
Price: 789.99 bare (may vary)
Most Powerful Professional Battery-Powered Chainsaw
Greenworks Commercial 82-Volt 20-Inch Chainsaw 82CS34
In late 2021 at GIE, DeWALT, Geenworks Commercial, and STIHL all announced new 20-inch battery-powered chainsaws with the power to take on the farm and ranch class. All three also claimed to have the most powerful and as the dust settled, Greenworks Commercial’s had the highest-rated power.
In addition to having higher power, it’s also a couple of hundred dollars less than Sithl’s 20-inch model. It gets into a range that even homeowners with large properties to maintain might be tempted to step up.
As a side note, Greenworks also has a 20-inch chainsaw now available for its 60V residential lineup.
Price: 549.99 bare, 599.99 with 4.0Ah battery and charger
Best Battery Top Handle Chainsaw
Husqvarna 40V Top-Handle Chainsaw T540i XP
By our measure, Husqvarna’s 540i XP is the best cordless top-handle chainsaw currently available. Though quite not as powerful as the Greenworks Commercial 82V yet stronger than Echo’s 56V, its balance of 40cc power, weight, and 12 – 16-inch bar options make it an excellent choice for arborists.
While Echo takes the cake as the lightest professional choice, Husqvarna does have the option to use a backpack battery and shift some of the battery weight off of the saw. It’s not terribly practical when you’re climbing, but can be handy for ground-level work.
Price: 629.00 – 649.00 bare, 1049.00 – 1069.00 kit depending on bar length
Best Battery Pole Saw
Makita 40V max XGT Telescoping Pole Saw GAU02
When it comes to the best battery pole saw, multi-head systems are an excellent platform. However, most professional crews prefer dedicated tools to attachment systems. If that sounds like you, check out Makita’s GAU02. It’s a 9- to 13-foot telescoping system (full length, not just reach) that reaches significantly higher than most of its competition.
Its performance is impressive. It uses a single 40V max battery with its 10-inch bar to cut at speeds up to 3940 fpm (20.0 meters per second). In terms of overall power, it’s the equivalent of a 35cc gas engine. In fact, Makita’s internal testing showed 30% faster cutting compared to a 36cc gas model.
This model doesn’t include the torque boost mode that was in the 18V X2 LXT model we recommended last year. However, with the boost in overall power, it doesn’t really need it.
Price: 554.00 bare, 769.00 with a 4.0Ah battery and charger
Looking for a battery-powered pole saw for home use? Take a closer look at EGO’s 56V telescoping pole saw that has a total reach up to 16 feet, has a carbon fiber shaft, and sports an LED cutline indicator.
Best Chainsaw? Let’s Settle This! Stihl, Husqvarna, ECHO, Poulan Pro, Craftsman, Ryobi, Salem Master
Best Cordless Chainsaw for Home Use
Greenworks 60V Pro Brushless 2026202
n choosing the best battery chainsaw for home use, we didn’t want to sacrifice the power we enjoy from our professional saws. While there are a lot of options available, we tend to get the best balance of performance and weight in the 60V class.
Greenworks brought a major upgrade to its 60V line with a 20-inch chainsaw. While it’s not quite as strong as the 3.4kW Commercial model, it’s still packing a strong 3.0kW of power. To put that in perspective, Greenworks’ internal testing had it cutting faster than a 60cc gas chainsaw. It also outputs 20% more torque. Not only is Greenworks the first to get a 20-inch battery-powered chainsaw to consumers, but it also has legitimate performance to back it up.
The downside of being the best is that it costs more—around 499.99 for the kit. This is for folks that need or want the highest performance available from a residential chainsaw.
Price: 499.99 with an 8.0Ah battery and charger
Best Small Battery-Powered Chainsaw
Choosing the best small cordless chainsaw isn’t just a matter of choosing something lightweight with a 10- or 12-inch bar anymore. The introduction of battery pruners with a 4- to 8- inch bar and chain ups the ante. So we picked one of each for you.
Ryobi 18V HP Brushless Whisper Series 12-Inch Chainsaw P2570
We value performance over price, so our top pick as the best small battery-powered chainsaw is the Ryobi P2750. It’s part of the 18V One HP Brushless line that delivers higher performance than its brushed counterparts. It’s also part of Ryobi’s Whisper Series. That means it operates at lower noise levels than other models and makes for a better overall user experience.
The small size also keeps things on the lightweight side of the scale. With a 6.0Ah battery, this 12-inch chainsaw weighs just 8.7 pounds.
Price: 229.00 bare, 249.00 kit with 6.0Ah battery and charger
Best Battery Pruner
Milwaukee M18 Fuel Hatchet 8-inch Pruning Saw 3004
It’s almost unfair to call the Milwaukee M18 Fuel Hatchet a pruner. While it has the general form factor of other popular mini-chainsaw pruners that have hit the market over the last few years, it’s on a completely different performance level.
While it’s certainly useful as a pruner when manual pruners or hedge trimmers can’t cut it, landscaping crews can also use it for limbing duties on the ground or working at height. In many ways, the Hatchet bridges the gap between pruners and top-handle chainsaws.
Price: 279.00 bare, 528.00 with an 8.0Ah battery High Output battery and charger, 579.00 with a 12.0Ah High Output battery and charger
Best Cordless Chainsaw for the Money
EGO 56V 16-Inch Battery-Powered Chainsaw CS1611
EGO already had a solid 16-inch chainsaw on the market, but they released a new one in 2022 that accomplished a couple of things. First, it upped the performance to compete with and even beat gas saws in the 40cc class. With a couple of kit options all under 300.00, it also earns our pick as the best value battery-powred chainsaw currently available. If getting the most bang for your buck is your highest priority, this is your chainsaw.
Price: 239.00 bare (CS1610), 279.00 with a 2.5Ah battery and charger(CS1611), 299.00 with a 4.0Ah battery and charger (CS1613)
Best Budget Battery-Powered Chainsaw
Skil PWRCore 40 14-Inch Cordless Chainsaw CS4555-10
Just because you’re on a sub-200 budget doesn’t mean you can’t get a quality brushless chainsaw. Skil’s PWRCore 40 system includes a 14-inch brushless chainsaw that finds an excellent balance of performance, design, and price.
We tested this saw cutting oak and it did an excellent job of confidently melting through branches up to 12 inches thick. With auto-oiling and a tool-free chain adjustment system, it’s very easy to use as well. Best of all, the kit is just 199.99.
Price: 199.99 with 2.5Ah battery and charger
See Also: Can battery power cut it? Read our article: Why use a battery-powered chainsaw
Recommendations from Brands We Trust
Best DeWALT Cordless Chainsaw – 60V Max Brushless DCCS677
Without a doubt, DeWALT’s 60V Max 20-inch cordless chainsaw (DCCS677) is the best model in Yellow’s lineup. As one of three professional battery-powered 20-inch chainsaws targetting the farm and ranch class, it’s in a very elite class and it happens to be the least expensive of them.
In designing the saw, DeWALT’s development team used the largest brushless motor in any tool they have, period. Along with a list of features that verify its professional pedigree, it’s also the first DeWALT chainsaw to come with a case.
Price: 379.00 bare, 479.00 with a 4.0Ah battery and charger, 549.00 with a 5.0Ah battery and charger
Best Cordless Chainsaw. Top 10 Best Battery Chainsaws in 2023
Best Echo Cordless Chainsaw – 56V Brushless DCS-2500T
Echo is moving away from its original 58V cordless line to a new 56V Force system (the two systems are not compatible). Along with the initial launch, there are two chainsaw offerings: a homeowner-grade 18-inch model and a Pro-focused 12-inch top handle.
The top handle is our choice as the best Echo battery-powered chainsaw. As part of the X-Series, the DCS-2500T oozes professional design. It starts with a muscular brushless motor and builds out the drop protection (including a quickdraw harness ring) you expect from a professional gas top handle saw. Plus, it’s very lightweight at just 7.3 pounds with the battery. It’s definitely not your least expensive top-handle option, but it is designed with the demands of professional arborists in mind.
Price: 479.99 bare, 569.99 with a 2.5Ah battery and charger
Best EGO Battery-Powered Chainsaw – 56V 18-inch Brushless CS1800
Moving to an 18-inch bar, the EGO CS1800 is still on the top of the charts for homeowners even though the brand hasn’t moved up to the 20-inch class (yet). It has excellent power and there’s plenty of runtime with available batteries up to 10.0Ah (a 5.0Ah pack comes in the kit).
In addition to its performance, EGO’s auto-tensioning system makes it super-easy to adjust the chain tension and access the bar and chain without the use of additional tools. There’s even an LED to help with post-storm cleanup when the power’s out and you can’t wait for sunrise.
While there are stronger residential saws available, the ease of use, size, performance, and price all come together in a very approachable manner for folks that aren’t used to professional models.
Price: 279.00 bare, 369.00 with a 5.0Ah battery and charger, 579.00 with two 5.0Ah batteries and charger
Best HART Battery-Powered Chainsaw – 40V Brushless Supercharge HLCS041VNM
HART is stepping up its chainsaw game this year by moving into the 18-inch class. Part of a new line of 40V Supercharge products, this brushless chainsaw pushes performance higher enough to compete with gas models in the 40cc range. Along with a quality feature set, it also comes with a handy case for storage and transport that holds both the saw and the 6.0Ah battery that comes in the kit.
Keep your eyes open for this saw to show up at Walmart by the end of February 2023.
Best Husqvarna Cordless Chainsaw – 40V Brushless Power Axe 350i
With Husqvarna’s deep heritage in chainsaw manufacturing, you may be surprised that the Power Axe 350i is its first 18-inch cordless chainsaw. This Lowe’s-exclusive model features a brushless motor that does most of its work at an efficient 9.4 m/s chainsaw speed and has a boost feature that kicks it up to 11.7 m/s for getting through tougher cuts.
This residential-focused chainsaw balances that performance with an easy-to-use design. It’s also light for its size and has completely tool-free chain tensioning.
Price: 279.99 bare, 449.99 with a 7.5Ah battery and charger
Best Makita Cordless Chainsaw – 40V max XGT GCU04
We’ve been using Makita’s 18V and 18V X2 chainsaws for years. However, it’s the 40V max XGT line that has the best options for Team Teal. The GCU04 steps up with 42cc gas equivalent power thanks to its brushless motor. It sports an 18-inch bar with chain speeds up to 5020 fpm (25.5 m/s).
This model has dual bar studs with captured nuts. If you prefer tool-free chainsaw tensioning, you can get the same performance with that feature in the GCU06.
Price: 429.99 bare, 599.99 with a 5.0Ah battery and Rapid charger
Best Milwaukee Cordless Chainsaw- M18 Fuel 2727
Milwaukee had one of the first really great cordless chainsaws and the M18 Fuel 2727 is still an excellent choice. It sports a brushless motor that runs its 16-inch bar and chain to levels that exceed 40cc gas power. It has a quality build with metal bucking spikes and dual captured bar nuts.
Even though other brands have pushed the power boundary forward, we still highly recommend this saw. Now that Milwaukee has raised the bar with its self-propelled lawn mower, there are whispers beginning to ask if there’s a new high-performance chainsaw in the works for later this year.
Price: 329.00 bare, 499.00 with 12.0Ah battery and charger (also available with a 14-inch bar for 319.00)
Best Ridgid Cordless Chainsaw – 18V Brushless R01101
Hey—we’re talking about a Ridgid cordless chainsaw for the first time! Ridgid is launching its first OPE products in 2023 and a 12-inch chainsaw is on the menu. While it’s on the smaller side, the saw’s 18V brushless motor is capable of 10 m/s chain speeds. It’s a good choice if you’re looking for something lightweight.
Like many Ridgid power tools, the chainsaw is eligible for the Lifetime Service Agreement.
Note: Look for Ridgid’s chainsaw to be available beginning March 1, 2023.
Price: 189.00 bare, 269.00 kit with a 6.0Ah Max Output battery and charger
Best Ryobi Cordless Chainsaw – 40V HP Brushless RY405110VNM
Ryobi’s launch of HP Brushless tools has been impressive. The 40V HP Brushless 18-inch chainsaw is a fantastic example as one of only two 20-inch models currently available on the residential scene. With cutting performance that can replace a 50 cc gas engine, it’s far ahead of Ryobi’s other models and enters the Farm and Ranch class.
With metal bucking spikes, dual bar studs, and an adjustable oil flow, Ryobi’s flagship cordless chainsaw acts more like a professional model than an occasional-use homeowner one.
Price: 289.00 bare, 379.00 with a 5.0Ah battery and charger
Best Skil Battery-Powered Chainsaw – PWRCore 40 Brushless CS4555-10
As we mentioned above, Skil’s 14-inch brushless chainsaw is the way to go if you’re looking for a budget saw that still does a great job. You get the performance of a brushless motor, confident cutting, and a price tag under 200. While it doesn’t have the same power and capacity as the larger saws, it does share many of the same features and costs significantly less.
Price: 199.99 with 2.5Ah battery and charger
Best STIHL Cordless Chainsaw – 36V Brushless MSA 220 TC-O
As our top choice overall, STIHL’s MSA 300 C-O is the best the brand has as well. It’s not the only class STIHL is in. Pros may want to consider supplementing that model with the MSA 220 TC-O. This top-handle chainsaw has a brushless motor. It’s the strongest cordless top-handle in STIHL’s cordless lineup and configures with either a 12- or 14-inch bar.
At 10 pounds with the 14-inch bar and AP 300 battery, it’s not the lightest top-handle model on our list. However, it’s still a very manageable weight and, of course, you’re backed by Sithl’s dealer and service network.
Price: 589.99 bare with 12-inch bar (may vary)
Best Battery Chainsaw Buying Guide | What We Look For
Performance is King
Thanks to advanced brushless motors, electronics, and batteries, voltage no longer tells the entire story. However, cutting speed with the torque to get through thick hardwood species is the number one priority for us.
Runtime is (Sort of) a Big Deal
Ideally, a battery-powered chainsaw balances cutting speed and power with runtime. Larger batteries are certainly helping. Advancements in battery technology are as well. Denser cells with more robust connections are able to more efficiently transfer energy from the battery to the chain. This gives you higher performance without a drop in runtime that makes the saw irrelevant.
The other side of the conversation involves Rapid chargers. Most brands offer them now and several include them as a standard part of the kit. With today’s cordless technology, two batteries and a Rapid charger can be enough to keep you running continuously all day.
Most chainsaws are similar in form and share all of the same basic operational features. Where the best cordless chainsaws differ in form is primarily in their switches and triggers.
All of the saws have a UL or similar test lab certification on them, but they’re not all the same. In use, some of the saws in our test have more defined two-step triggers. Others easily activate using a single grasp around their lockout button and trigger. At the end of the day, we expect our chainsaws to keep us from accidentally activating the motor. All of our recommendations meet that requirement. From there, it’s just a matter of the feel or function you prefer.
The true two-step lockouts aren’t difficult to operate in normal conditions. In odd positions, such as reaching around a tree while limbing, sometimes the mechanical lockouts can be tricky to slide.
For select cordless chainsaws, the first of two (or sometimes three) stages of starting is an electronic power button.
Some electronic switch saws can be run with a single grab once powered on. You just have to be mindful of the auto timeout feature. It can be frustrating the pull the trigger to no effect when you thought the saw was ready.
Ease of Adjustment
Chainsaw bars need to be adjusted nearly every time you use the saw. A new chain stretches out pretty quickly. You need to snug it up at least a few times as it breaks in.
If your chain gets tight rather suddenly, it usually means the bar is not getting oil. Don’t loosen it until you make sure the saw is oiling properly.
Pro Tip: Get into the habit of loosening your chain at the end of the day. Cold weather can cause it to tighten as it cools and damage parts.
A saw’s bar will be designed for either tool-free adjustment or will require a screwdriver-wrench combination tool called—yep, you guessed it—a scrench. Tool-free adjustment is the quickest and easiest with plastic knobs and/or dials built into the saw. They loosen the bar, move the bar forward or back to properly tension the chain, and lock the bar down tight again.
Dual Studs vs Tool-free Adjusters
Saws with tool-free adjusters use a single stud to attach the bar to the saw, but manual adjusting models typically have two mounting studs (sometimes one on small or top-handle models). Some old-school users view dual studs as an indication that the saw is geared toward professionals, but we don’t think that’s a hard, fast rule. Not for modest-sized saws anyway. However, the biggest and strongest chainsaws made all have dual stud bar mounts.
Pro Tip: Be sure to snug the nuts evenly because torquing down on only one can loosen the other.
Lost bar nuts are a frequent occurrence during regular use in the field. To prevent this, some saws have the added feature of captive nuts that won’t come all the way off the cover no matter how much you spin them.
Pro Tip: Keep a spare nut on hand if the ones on your saw aren’t captuve—it’s not unusual to lose one in the field!
To keep your adjustment tool close at hand, look for models that have storage slots built into the saws.
Your preferences may vary, but we can appreciate both adjustment methods. We like the speed and convenience of tool-free adjustments for small saws. For big saws, we feel more confident securing the business end of these powerful tools down with a wrench.
It’s not a deal-breaker either way for the saws in our test unless the mechanism itself is flawed. The best battery-powered chainsaw for you is the one that instills a sense of both confidence and convenience.
Bars and Chains
Most chainsaw brands don’t try to reinvent the wheel by making their own bars and chains. Instead, many use quality Oregon components, though STIHL makes their own bars and chains. Most cordless chainsaws use 3/8-in. pitch, 0.043-in. gauge chains while stronger models are moving up to 0.050-in. gauge.
Bar and chain oil is the lifeblood of a chainsaw as the saw cannot run without it for very long. Most saws oil readily, but we occasionally run across models that have issues after a while. If a saw oiled well out of the box, it usually just needs a good cleaning to unclog it.
Most battery-powered chainsaws have translucent Windows that let you check if there’s oil in the tank, and most let you estimate the level pretty well. If yours has a small window or none at all, be sure to stop and check the oil level frequently. About every hour of working time or anytime you notice a change in performance is a good rule of thumb.
The ease of filling the oil reservoir is a noteworthy convenience factor when considering the best battery-powered chainsaw. We don’t like having oily fingers, so being able to fill the tank while leaving our work gloves on is our preference. Look for oil caps with lugs that are easy to turn with gloves on and/or flip-up tabs that provide an even better grip.
Chainsaws often leak oil while sitting because daily heating and cooling shrinks and expands a plastic tank like a rudimentary pump. Some saws are messier than others.
Wherever you store your saw, put a piece of cardboard underneath it to collect any oil. You can switch it out as needed and whenever an Amazon order arrives.
Be careful when filling your chainsaw. Some have a large section of the cap that goes inside the tank and displaces a surprising amount of oil when you fill it anywhere close to the top. Wiping gooey oil off a chainsaw is an annoying waste of time.
Another cause of spills is an oil tank with a filler neck that is too narrow. Bar and chain oil is thick and tacky. It can pour like molasses in the cold, so it easily “piles up” and overflows in a narrow neck.
Pro Tip: Only poke a small hole in the foil of your oil container or use a (clean) syrup bottle to dispense oil into your chainsaw’s reservoir.
Providing another challenge, plastic filters at the inlet of its tank can constrict the diameter.
Caps that cross-thread easily can also make the oil-fill process more of a chore.
Environmental Sidetrack: Try Biodegradable Bar and Chain Oil
The other part of this cleaner, greener, lithium-ion-powered story is you can pair your battery chainsaw with a biodegradable bar and chain oil made of vegetable-based ingredients, such as STIHL Bio Plus. Those barrels of useful wood waste also contain a few gallons of oil from the saws.
Aside from having to landfill all of your petroleum-preserved sawdust, it’s just good practice to minimize your exposure to petroleum oil on your skin, clothing, and the atomized portion that you breathe in.
Back on Track… Bucking Spikes
For pushing a saw through wood more efficiently, chainsaws come fitted with bucking spikes. You may also hear these called bumper spikes, felling spikes, or dogs. These spikes sit against the body of the saw alongside the bar. They anchor the saw in place while you pivot the bar through a cut.
The spikes allow you to apply a lifting motion of the rear hand instead of pushing downward. Holding the saw tight to the wood, the motor can exert its maximum pulling power. This saves you from some of the cutting vibrations common when holding a saw away from your work.
Our battery-powered saws all have some semblance of spikes. Most aren’t as long or as sharp as those on large gas saws. However, actual steel spikes are becoming more common. We prefer those to the simple plastic ridges on other models.
Pro Tip: Applying leverage with spikes adds control, but go easy and listen to the pitch of the motor. You can overload battery chainsaws with too much pressure, and the weaker models stall easily.
While it’s true that the comfort and feel of a tool are largely subjective, it’s also true that some designs work better than others. Most Pros and experienced homeowners can immediately tell.
For the best battery-powered chainsaw, a balanced feel in your hands and the ability to cut straight without introducing a twisting motion to overcome are both important ergonomic factors.
Holding a saw with your left hand on the front handle in front of you should have the saw balancing fairly flat. Being a bit front-heavy is okay, but a rear-heavy saw lifts the cutting end of the saw up towards you and requires more effort and vigilance to use and carry safely.
Determining a good feel for felling cuts while holding the chainsaw sideways is more about the comfort of applying force to the front and rear handles as you grasp it from the side, and also the ease of operating the trigger while sideways.
In general, chainsaws with thicker handles are more comfortable to grasp in use because have more surface contact and soften that contact with your hand. Of course, rubber handle surfaces help too, not only for padding but also for the increased grip they provide.
Most cordless chainsaw triggers are large enough for two fingers to fit on them. Some have an extra-long trigger with more room to vary your grip stance for comfort. The best feeling triggers retract flush with the handle instead of leaving a raised bump your fingers have to push against.
The dry weight of the best battery chainsaws can swell to well over 15 pounds. Experience shows that a saw’s weight is less important than proper balance overall as you only feel the full weight when you’re NOT cutting.
But carrying around and positioning a heavy saw can certainly be more taxing over a long workday. The catch with these saws is that the batteries are a major part of the weight. So the stronger, longer-lasting saws with high-capacity battery packs and longer bars that we prefer end up being the heaviest.
While we do the majority of our testing with the kitted batteries, it’s worth looking at the full range a manufacturer has available for your cordless chainsaw. If you end up investing in the entire lineup, you’ll likely want to consider the biggest batteries you can buy for it to get all of your lawn chores done efficiently.
You might also want a lower-capacity battery to shave some weight when you don’t have a lot of work to complete.
Higher voltage means more power, right? There’s certainly an argument for that, but it doesn’t tell the whole story.
Power is measured in watts and that comes from multiplying the voltage times the current. You can make a 36V chainsaw with the same power as a 56V model. The lower voltage simply has to produce more amps (current) to get there.
That’s why you see chainsaws with 40cc gas performance at 18V, 36V, and 60V. It’s all about the combination of volts and amps.
Another thing that is interesting to note is the discrepancy between the amp-hour and watt-hour ratings on some of the batteries in our tests for their given voltage. We’ve covered the subject of battery voltage, storage capacity, and current output many times. To review simply:
Volts x Amp Hours = Watt Hours
It’s the same basic equation we use for power, just applied to energy storage instead of output. It’s an easy way to compare the available energy of one battery to another when they have different voltages.
We’re increasingly finding that manufacturers—perhaps to simplify things for consumers—are rounding amp-hours. Some calculate their watt-hours with maximum voltage while most use nominal. Unfortunately, this makes some comparisons more challenging and adds to potential confusion.
When you charge a lithium-ion battery, it will reach its maximum voltage. Shortly after putting it to use, it settles into a slightly lower voltage—its nominal voltage. The nominal voltage is where the battery spends most of its working life and is roughly 90% of the maximum voltage.
Brands have to choose which one to display. When you see numbers such as 60V Max, that’s a battery that settles into a 54V nominal voltage. When you don’t see “Max” on the battery and packaging, you’re usually looking at a battery that is displaying its nominal volts.
We say “usually” for a reason. Some brands market their maximum voltage but don’t make it clear.
Some European countries regulate stated voltages more stringently, and it seems that it could only serve to help if the simple math all added up.
Best Battery-Powered Chainsaw Accessories
While nearly every chainsaw comes with basic plastic scabbards to protect the chain while also protecting you from the chain, a few of the models go above and beyond.
We’ve seen an optional tip guard to make safe operation more foolproof. Attaching the guard makes you lose a few inches of cutting capacity and prevents any plunge cuts and other non-through cuts such as deep rips. However, casual users may feel more comfortable with the tip of the saw fully protected against kickback.
Once in a while, you can find a unique, form-fitting bag or case. It’s helpful for storage and transportation, though you might want to use it only after you’ve drained the oil from your saw.
Buy Into a System
One other consideration for these saws is the system of battery-powered OPE to which they belong. Like other cordless tools, you can purchase some of our best battery-powered chainsaws as bare tools at significant savings over the kit. If you’re already invested in one of these systems, the overall winner may not interest you as much as seeing which model from your brand is the best in the lineup. Though not the best overall, it might be the best balance of performance and value for you.
Look at the Entire Model Lineup
If you haven’t bought into a system yet and may pick up more outdoor power tools in the future, check out the entire lineup from a brand. Make sure they can fulfill your wish list before going after just the chainsaw. For many users, the saw functions as a secondary tool when compared to the hours you spend with a string trimmer or mower.
Why You Can Trust Pro Tool Reviews
Ever check out a “review” site and you can’t tell if they actually tested the tools or if they’re just “recommending” the Amazon top sellers?
That’s not us. We only recommend what we’d actually use, even if we don’t earn a commission from it. It’s all about giving you a legitimate recommendation and our honest opinion of each product.
We’ve been in business since 2008 covering tools, writing reviews, and reporting on industry news in the construction, automotive, and lawn care industries. Our Pro reviewers work in the trades and have the skills and experience to know whether tools can perform well in the field.
Each year, we bring in and review more than 250 individual products. Our team will put our hands on hundreds of additional tools at media events and trade shows throughout the year.
We consult with innovators in the technology and design of tools to gain a broader grasp of where these products fit and how they work.
We work with more than two dozen professional contractors around the United States who review products for us on real job sites and consult with us on testing methods, categories, and weighting.
We’ll provide more than 500 pieces of new content this year absolutely free for our readers—including objective evaluations of individual tools and products.
The end result is information you can trust because of the editorial, scientific, and real-world professional experience we collectively utilize each and every time we pick up and test a tool.
Find the CRAFTSMAN original equipment parts and accessories you need to keep your lawn mower, snow blower and other outdoor power equipment performing strong. These parts and accessories are designed and engineered to exact standards to provide reliability and optimal performance. Protect your CRAFTSMAN outdoor power product investment with CRAFTSMAN original equipment parts and accessories.
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Find the original equipment parts and accessories for your CRAFTSMAN outdoor power equipment on our Parts Diagrams. The Parts Diagram helps visualize components found on your equipment. If you can’t find what you’re looking for or need assistance installing the new part, call 1-855-971-2271.
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CRAFTSMAN original equipment parts can help you maintain your CRAFTSMAN outdoor power equipment long-term. Find parts by machine type: Riding Lawn Mower, Walk Behind Lawn Mower, Garden Tiller and Snow Blower to repair your machine.
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When you need blades to deliver a clean cut and a healthier-looking lawn, look no further than CRAFTSMAN original equipment blades. CRAFTSMAN blades are designed to provide a precise fit with every blade change. Heat dipped for durability and flexibility, these blades have been tested for thousands of hours to meet equipment standards. Protect your CRAFTSMAN outdoor power product investment with CRAFTSMAN original equipment blades. SHOP PARTS
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How to Repair a Lawn Mower Pull Cord
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Replace a broken starter rope on your lawn mower quickly and easily by following this simple step-by-step procedure.
You tug one last time to get the lawn mower started, and suddenly the pull cord breaks and the end goes spinning into the hole. Don’t blow a gasket. If you have even a tinge of mechanical aptitude, replacing a starter rope is pretty easy. If the spring breaks—a rare event, according to our repair expert—the fix is a lot harder, and we recommend you take the mower to a repair center.
Stuck Cord or Broken Cord?
First, check to confirm that the cord is actually broken and not just stuck. If it’s stuck, it may be an easier fix than full pull cord replacement and you likely won’t have to buy any new parts. Here are a few tips for fixing an electrical cord.
Run through your troubleshooting checklist if your cord isn’t working. Check to ensure the brake is off, make sure there isn’t any lawn debris clogging the blade, and finally, if all else fails, use our steps below to open the rewind unit. There, you’ll be able to see if the cord is stuck or fully broken.
What to Know About Replacement Cords
Different lawn mowers need different types of pull cords. If you don’t have time to spend looking for the right match, you can opt to get the thinnest kind, which will fit no matter what. But the thinner the cord, the more likely it is to break again soon. If you don’t already have replacement cord on hand, go to your local hardware store with the broken cord. The associates there should be able to help you get the exact kind you need.