For this buyer-review guide, I’ve purchased a total of the ten chainsaws from different popular brands like Stihl or Makita, each of which I reviewed and tested to bring you accurate and in-depth specifics about each of the chainsaw models within this guide.
Top 10 Chain saws Reviews of 2020
If you are on a mission to locate the best chainsaw from among the competitive brands, you’re in the right place. Here, we’ve created a checklist of great options with standout qualities that will help you pinpoint the best one you should pick-up for your sewing needs. We have included the well-known and often tagged as the greatest, Husqvarna chainsaw at the very top of this article.
1. Husqvarna 450 18-Inch Chainsaw with Smart Start
The Husqvarna 450 was the one that I was most excited to review as Husqvarna, like Stihl, is very well known among other brands for quality craftsmanship (in terms of build qualities) and high power output. This particular model is an excellent chainsaw for those with high volumes of the workload so if you run a tree-removal company or live in a large lot where many trees are needing to be removed then this is the chain saw of choice!
This tool, while being more powerful than the average by consumers is not as heavy as the best chainsaws for professionals so you get the power you need while being able to easily handle the machine.
One of the features of this model that has enthusiasts talking is the contemporary feature known as “Smart Start” which is a feature proprietary to Husqvarna. This feature as I’m sure you’ve already guessed makes starting the machine much easier for its users by reducing the amount of pulling power needed to start the chain saw by 40%!
Features of the Husqvarna 450 includes:
- Perfectly powered chain saw that will serve well for both personal and commercial users.
- Powerful 3.3 horsepower X-Torq based engine which provides better fuel efficiency while lessening emissions.
- Low-amount of vibration and easy startups with the Smart Start feature.
- Keep your air filter clean with the Centrifugal-air cleaning system.
In simpler terms, compared to the previous models of their saws, you only need to pull the cord at 60% of the power that you’d use to start older models as the resistance has been adjusted to make start-ups easier.
I was also happy to see that an advanced mechanism was added that combines the “choke” and “stop” into one control which prevents the chain saw from flooding, which can be a pain and an inconvenience to deal with especially when you’re in the middle of a task.
However, Husqvarna didn’t stop there; they continued to improve upon their already impressive Husqvarna 450 upgrades by adding an attached fuel pump which will ensure that all of the fuel lines are kept clear at all times.
This chain saw was put to the test during an 8-hour job that consisted of cutting through 12-inch pine logs and only once or twice was there a sign of resistance or strain on the motor. I can tell you now that the centrifugal system which is designed to keep debris out of the air filter operates very well (better than any other saw that I’ve reviewed).
2. Husqvarna 455 Rancher 20-Inch Chainsaw
The Husqvarna 455 Rancher (20-inch blade) is an incredibly well-built from quality parts powerful enough to handle nearly any job that you throw at it.
I’ve owned multiple chainsaws in the past that were built by Husqvarna (much like the brand Stihl) and I must say that I can tell that a lot of improvements have been made to this updated saw (the 455 Rancher).
Some of the recent features included are the modern x-torque engine (which reportedly allows you to use it with a significant reduction in gas use) and a centrifugal-air filtration system which smartly removes dust or wood particles from the saw before being able to reach the air filter (a great feature for avoiding damage).
One aspect that I’d like to discuss is the vibration levels which to me are very important considering that I use it for hours at a time.
After just a few minutes of usage, I quickly realized (and was pleasantly surprised) to see how low the vibration level was. After doing some research I found out that Husqvarna in-part introduced the x-torque engine procedure not only to reduce fuel consumption but to reduce the amount of vibration caused by the engine.
It’s because of these features that I consider the Husqvarna 455 Rancher to be the best gas chainsaw of 2020.
- Low gas/fuel consumption which is due to the refined z-torq engine.
- Easy cleaning and replacement process of the air filter (changeable in just moments).
- Centrifugal air filtration and cleaning system which halts wood dust and particles from reaching the air filter (stops around 90% of debris).
- 20-inch chain with a 1/2cc, 2-Stroke engine.
If I had to guess, I’d say there’s at least 50% less vibration compared to previous models that I’ve used by this manufacturer and they’ve done a fantastic job at not only improving on these areas but on the build quality as well.
I subjected this tool to the test and used it for around 6-hrs on a job that required me to cut 8-foot pieces of wood (34 pcs in total) and I was able to breeze through the whole job without running into any issues.
If you do the math on that, I made a total of around 425 cuts in a period of just 6 hrs. and the saw/blade was still going very strong.
Overall, I highly recommend the Husqvarna 455 Rancher chain saw to anyone looking for a durable; high-quality chainsaw that will meet any job requirements that you put it up to the test to.
3. Makita XCU02PTX1 18V X2 LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Drill
I must say that I’m typically the type of a guy who tends to stay away from electrics (corded) chain saws as I’ve always been under the impression that they’re less powerful than traditional models and I never had the urge to really go out and snap-up one, so counting this model in our greatest chainsaws comparison wasn’t trivial.
However, with an exception made for this review, I decided to try the Makita XCU02PTX1 and if I had to sum up my impression in just a few words I would say that it’s “Simply Awesome”!
I was very surprised at the power and sharpness of the blade as I cut 8-foot sections of wood for a couple of times and this electric chain saw just about held up to a standard.
- Two large and powerful batteries delivering a chain speed of 1,650 FPM.
- Two batteries (18-V LXT) will be contained within the kit.
- Zero emissions and low operational noise levels making working and wood grinding a more pleasant experience.
- Ability to change-out the sharp chain without the use of tools.
Makita has done an impressive job at designing and constructing this chain saw and I was very impressed at the power of the two 18V LXT batteries that power this 18-inch saw.
What’s nice about this kit is that Makita includes not one but two 18V LXT 5.0Ah batteries in addition to a dually ported charger (no need to get these add-ons separately which saves you money).
I was also happy to see that a four and a half-inch angle grinder (paddle switch) which is developed and designed to allow you to do grinding cuts at power levels similar to that of the best gas-powered chainsaws.
For being an electric type, I’m very impressed by what this saw is capable of but with 1,650 FPM and two large powerful batteries powering the blade you would be able to handle any job with the Makita XCU02PT!
4. DEWALT DCCS690M1 Chainsaw
First off, I want to say that one of the most important things to take into consideration before purchasing your ideal chainsaw are the warranties that are offered by the manufacturer as you don’t want to get stuck later down the line with a large repair bill if something were to happen to the saw.
DEWALT is a household name and provides each customer who purchases this saw with not only a 3-year limited warranty but a one full year of free service and a 90-day, no-hassle money-back guarantee!
DEWALT stands behind their products and this was nothing short of impressive and powerful which you would discover more about below.
The Dewalt 40V Max DCCS690 boasts a 16-inch chain and is now powered by a brushless motor which is a massive improvement over previous models since brushless motors tend to provide more power to the blade while also allowing the saw to be used for a longer duration of time.
What I also like about the brush-less ones is that you don’t need to worry about wearing out carbon brushes so conducting maintenance on the chain saw doesn’t need to be done that often.
Speaking of low-maintenance, during the development of this awesome chainsaw, DEWALT incorporated what’s called “LubriLink” and “LubriWell” feature which lubricates the chain on the saw for you!
This will allow you to spend less time doing saw-care and more time getting the job done! One of the many reasons that the DEWALT 40V is considered to be one of the best electric chainsaws.
- A low-kickback bar system with easy handling featuring a 16-inch chain.
- Easy maintenance with the self-oiling LubriLink system.
- Fast oil refills with a quick-turn oil cap.
- Adjust chain and bar tensioning without the use of tools.
- User-friendly and lightweight (Only weighs 13.5 pounds).
I did quite a bit of research and read many positive reviews from buyers about it. Many enthusiasts stating that it’s the perfect chainsaw for those needing the power of gas but also want the option of cordless usage, which makes it a valuable model in this test.
Before concluding my review on this DEWALT model, I want to point out a few advantages of this particular model that I believe a majority of shoppers will find useful.
For many, quite obvious motives, electric models provide many benefits compared to popular gas-powered saws some of which include much fewer maintaining-requirements and low-noise levels. If you’re like me and have shoulder problems, the Dewalt DCCS690 may be the best chainsaw for the money as using the chain saw only requires that you squeeze the trigger and when released it will power off.
This will save your arm from the constant pull and will be much cheaper in the long-term to operate with or without a license.
5. Oregon Cordless 40V CS300 Chainsaw
Oregon is one of those chainsaws manufacturers that don’t release new models of their tools often but when they do they do a splendid job at catching up to current user expectations by upgrading internal components and innovating self-maintenance technologies to make usage of the saw as user-friendly as possible.
The Oregon 40V, among the community, has been dubbed the name as the “Self-Sharpening Tool” which boasts a 4.0Ah battery which requires a 4-hour charge before use.
The charging time is the only downfall of this model in my opinion but if you won’t be bothered waiting a few moments to use the saw and aren’t pressured to have quick-charges then it’s well worth the waiting time.
This saw is quite aggressive when grinding through wood and it tears through the wood like there’s no tomorrow! This is due to the new and upgraded 81PS PowerSharp chain saw which functions simultaneously with built-in mechanics that sharpens the teeth of the saw for you during use.
- A powerful brushless motor that doesn’t require much maintenance.
- A 16-inch bar with a chain tension system that doesn’t require the use of tools.
- No pull-start required – just press the trigger to start and release to halt.
- A self-sharpening system will sharpen dulled teeth which are accomplished by using PowerSharp automation.
- Lightweight (weighs only 12-pounds including the battery) and is easy to handle.
- A 4.0 Ah battery pack added will require a 4-hour charge to be full.
The self-sharpening operation is quite effective at its job and is accomplished by a lever on top of the chain saw that curves to a meeting point with a sharpening stone that sharpens dulled teeth on the saw during usage.
In regards to the battery life, I was quite content with the 51 cuts that I was able to perform on a full charge. I tested the chain saw to cut a 10-inch pine log which took right around 11 seconds which for a 4.0 AMP isn’t too shabby.
Keep in mind that the 10-inch pine log that I cut was done as a stress-test and I don’t advise that you purchase this saw to cut wood of this size as the brand recommends that you only cut wood no thicker than 3-inches.
Yes, that’s right, 3-inches is the recommended maximum thickness for this saw and while it did manage to cut the 10-inch pine log during the stress-test, I could tell the motor was under stress and almost stalled once although it did end up to pull-through in the end and made the desired cut that I was looking to accomplish.
My conclusion on the 40V CS300 Overall, it’s a satisfactory saw that I think would work awesome for individuals that need a saw for “around the house” kind of maintenance such as cutting dead branches off trees and maintaining a garden. I wouldn’t recommend performing cuts over 3-inches as in the long-term you’re going to wear the motor out quickly as this wasn’t built nor intended for heavy-duty cuts. If you’re shopping on a budget and want a cordless and easy-to-use design then definitely include this one on your top chainsaws consideration list!
6. Echo CS-590 20-inch Timber Wolf Chainsaw
At first, I wasn’t going to review this model but after reading many good reviews on Amazon from buyers I knew I had to test this “bad boy” out for myself!
I typically don’t think of Echo for heavy-duty work that requires commercial strength, But before getting into the details I’ll say now that I’m highly impressed with what Echo has built here.
First, I was shocked at the weight of the saw as just by appearance it seems that it’d weight less than the actual weight of the saw although it does weigh considerably less than the Echo CS-400.
While not discussed too much by Echo, one thing I noticed is that they’ve tremendously improved upon weight distribution. As soon as I picked up this saw, the heaviness was quite noticeable although the weight “seems to be” evenly distributed throughout the saw as a whole.
Features of the Echo CS-590 includes:
- Engine Size 59.8 cc (2-stroke).
- A large fuel-capacity capable of holding 21.8 ounces of gasoline.
- A decompression valve makes starting the saw easier than ever before.
- A good-sized oil-capacity of capable of holding 10.1 ounces.
- A 1-year warranty for commercial users and 5 years for consumers (residential use).
Working and grinding wood for an entire day with this saw left me with no back pain and I never had to strain to cut positioning the saw and leveraging it to the perfect position was as easy as it gets!
After extended usage of this saw, I’m blown away by the sheer power that this thing puts out and it’ll not disappoint you regardless of what you task it with.
In the past, I’ve purchased and owned saws at twice the cost of this saw that only performed at about 50% of what this saw is capable of so if you choose to go with the ECHO Timber WOLF CS-590 you’ll be receiving a tremendous value for your money!
7. BLACK+DECKER LCS1020 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Battery 10 Inch Chainsaw
If you are a fan of battery models then this is the right thing for you. I was a little bit doubtful before I got to know this fellow, but after I took it in my hand and made a few cuts it made me change my decision. The first feeling when you get it is that is so easy to utilize.
At the same time, one of the usual questions, when the battery is considered, is how much it takes before the battery dies. The Black and Decker LCS1020 is one of the highest rank battery chainsaws in the market due to its 20-V lithium battery, which stays charged 5 times longer than usual batteries.
Features BLACK+DECKER LCS 1020 includes:
- 20-V Lithium Battery which stays charged up to 5 times longer than normal.
- 10 Inch low-kickback bar and chain for heavy-duty jobs Automated oiling system with a push knob.
- Additional tool-free blade tensioning system for fast cuts and easy handling.
When it comes to the best characteristics of the product, one that is also important for everyday users is a self-oiling system that can be controlled with a primer switch. The chainsaw is reinforced with an Oregon 10-inch chain which provides wide range, easy and smooth cuts to this not very noisy machine.
All regular jobs apart from cutting, such as pruning and trimming, are a piece of cake for this tool thanks to its 10-inch bar. The chain is heavy-duty, but in practice, the tool is best for easy and medium-duty work. If you need it for some usual basic work in the woods and your home, LCS 1020 is something that is best for you, especially related to outstanding value for the money you need to pay.
8. Remington RM5118R Rodeo 51cc 2-Cycle 18-Inch Gas Chainsaw
The Remington RM5118R is a tank when it comes to durability. It has strong bucking spikes that give the user enhanced control over their cutting. And it has a chassis covering which protects it from scratches and dents. You can find it on Amazon at a price of around $235.
- Quick Alert System.
- Intertia Chain Brake.
- Heavy Duty Case.
- Quick Start System.
- 51cc 2-Cycle Engine.
Its main selling authority is its power ratio. For instance, it has a 51CC 2 cycle engine that has an 18-inch blade. Buy this chainsaw if you want a strong device that can cut through firewood, trimming medium and large trees and 50-year-old trees in your backyard.
Both of the handles were made to increase the user’s comfort. It has anti-vibration contraption that keeps the user’s hand tightly gripped without it slipping off. You’ll be able to run the machine for up to 8 hrs without experiencing fatigue.
Placed on top is a stop button. And, there’s an inertia chain that can prevent the user from receiving the kickback from the machine. It works by reflexively stopping the chain movement once a kickback occurs making it safe for novice users.
With its Quickstart Technology feature, you’ll have a startup time 3x quicker than competing products. The chainsaw features an electronic ignition mechanism jumpstarts the engine allowing you to cut through lumber right away.
Ultimately, this Remington version is a very good chainsaw for cutting pinions, 24-inch trees without any hesitation. Use this tool for light to heavy jobs as it has enough power to complete your cutting task safely and efficiently.
You can also check our review of the RM1425 Electric Chainsaw for another highly recommended chainsaw from the brand, except smaller.
9. WORX WG 304.1 15.0 Amp 4 HP 18 Inch Chainsaw
The Worx WG304.1 is a lightweight and powerful power tool that is used for quick and simple jobs in your backyard. It plugs in through a cord (an extension helps) and has minimal cost operations, plus it doesn’t produce harmful emissions like other gas-powered saws. Get this on Amazon at a price about $91.
- 14.5 Amp Motor.
- Auto Oil Lubrication.
- Auto-tensioned chain system.
- Low Kickback Bar.
- Weight: 11lbs
Unlike competing models that have a manual chain tension adjustment, this one has an automatic chain tensioning medium. When using it, you only have to move the locking knob clockwise until its sealed tight. This ensures that the blade is stable enough to cut through wood correctly.
Plus, the chainsaw has a motor power of 15 amps. According to its manufacturer, it has a peak of 4HP. And, it produces enough power up to 1,800 watts that turn into 2.4 bhp. Due to its motor speed, it has enough power to handle most jobs in your home.
You’ll also like the device’s automatic oiling that keeps your it constantly lubricated. It has a capacity of 6.75 fl oz and uses a transparent window to help users check their oil levels. Consumers also noticed the 18” bar and chain. This allows the tool to cut through medium-sized logs with no hesitation. If you have a power source nearby to plug a cord in, the 304.1 is a proper choice for users who don’t want to deal with too much preservation efforts like the gas models.
Overall, this Worx saw is the small chainsaw we rated as best for beginner projects and builders. If you need to work in a noise-sensitive environment, this saw’s silent engine will ensure that it won’t cause much of a distraction. Get this one if you want an easy to start and reliable machine.
10. GreenWorks Pro GCS80420 Cordless Chainsaw
The Greenworks chainsaw’s auto oiler has a capacity of up to 2 oz of oil. Additionally, it will alert the user once it runs out of oil. Because of this feature, consumers were able to effectively handle the chain saw better and finish their projects speedier. It’s currently sold on Amazon at a price of around $263.
- 1/8” Bar Length.
- 3/8” Chain Pitch.
- Wrap Around Handle.
- Side Chain Tension.
- Bar Oiler and Automatic Chain.
When it comes to battery power, it has a 360Wh, 5.5 battery-charge that allows the machine to operate for 70 mins. without a cord plugged into an outlet. The chainsaw has a LED apparatus that shows when the battery is charging and when it’s at 100%.
The Pro GSC80420 consists of metal and tough plastic. It’s well designed; having it’s on/off switch located on top of the rear handle. For further protection, it has a throttle trigger and a safety lock that prevents users from starting the saw by accident.
Front and rear guards are made to protect the user’s hand from debris and other chainsaw issues. While they do offer great protection, we suggest that you wear appropriately sized gloves when using this machine.
Consumers appreciated the extra stuff that came with the GSC80420. It includes a screwdriver, a wrench, chain oil, and a bar scabbard. These accessories help you improve your performance by assisting you with tuning and operating the chainsaw.
Mainly, the GSC80420 has a great aggregate of power, torque, and accuracy when being used daily. Its wrap-around handle enhances the user’s grip and reduces the vibration in their hands. Take it home today for a lightweight saw that can be used for small to medium-sized trees.
Years ago, my father owned a company that specialized in the removal of unwanted trees and tree stumps for clients.
Growing up, I was fortunate enough to work alongside my father in this business and gained quite a bit of experience in the usage and maintenance of chainsaws since I was working on job sites for the business for 5-6 days per week for nearly 5 years.
It was a tough line of work but understanding what chainsaws from brands were models of chainsaws that were durable and built to get the job done helped us to complete hundreds of tree-removal jobs.
With my experience, I was able to swiftly have a grasp on what aspects to look for when determining if it’s one that will truly hold up to the promises and job demands.
Since chainsaws tend to be on the more expensive side, it’s important to understand the build-quality and capability before you purchase so you alleviate the probability of purchasing a saw that won’t hold up to your requirements.
Do I need a chainsaw?
While there are a multitude of tools and unique kinds of saws from brands available that allow cuts to be made on trees, chainsaws are most recommended as they’re quite versatile in the sense that many types of cuts can be performed and they’re the most powerful type of saw that you can have in your arsenal.
What should know before purchasing a chainsaw?
There are many aspects to consider before you finally choose the best chainsaw to obtain and our guide is intended to provide you with the facts you will need to choose a chainsaw that meets your standards and requirements. Some of the many things to consider before choosing a chainsaw are the power capabilities, safety features, warranties, and included accessories all of which you’d be able to learn more about out in this write-up. Remember to procure safety covers too, like gloves and chaps.
Since saws can vary quite drastically between commercial and personal use, make sure you fully read and understand the specifications and features of the saws listed within this guide so you can make a wise acquisition decision.
Thanks for reading our buying guide! I hope that I’ve been able to provide you with valuable attributes that will help you in choosing the best chainsaw for all of your cutting needs!
If you’re a beginner who wants to start your DIY journey with your new woodworking tools, we have a collection of plans/projects for beginners right HERE.