Chain Saw Care and Safety

A chainsaw in action on a log

A chain saw can make light work of heavy pruning, and like any garden tool, it needs proper maintenance.

Keeping the chain sharp is essential. You can sharpen it yourself, but many people prefer to let a professional do the job. You should also check the tension of the chain often, since it will stretch with use. Your owner’s manual will explain how.

Many saws automatically apply bar oil to the chain to keep it running smoothly, so remember to fill the reservoir as needed. Don’t forget that the spark plug, air filter, and other parts in the engine will need periodic servicing.

Finally, prevent future engine problems by emptying the fuel before you store the saw for long periods of time.

Chain Saw Safety

A chain saw can move up to 68 miles per hour, and its muffler can be as hot as 900 degrees Fahrenheit. Many people are hurt every year by misusing this powerful and dangerous tool, but injury can be prevented by taking the proper precautions.

When you purchase a chain saw, make sure it has safety features, like a low-kickback chain, a hand guard, and a chain brake.

Never carry your chain saw unless the engine is shut off and the chain brake is engaged. The scabbard should be covering the guide bar to prevent cuts. Carry the chain saw backwards and keep the muffler away from your body so you don’t get burned.

Don’t want to take this on yourself? Hire an ISA Certified Arborist to do the job.