Chainsaws can be an extremely helpful addition to your tool shed. Proper care of them will extend their usefulness for years.
Maintaining your chainsaw properly is one of the key elements to its long-term viability and should take precedence over all else. Although maintaining chainsaws takes effort and time, the results will pay dividends when your saw cuts through logs like new. These maintenance tricks will keep your tool operating for years!
5 Chainsaw maintenance tips to follow:
1. Never Run Your Chainsaw Dry
Every chainsaw user knows when their motor struggles with fuel availability and revs louder and higher than usual during cuts. At these points, the temptation may arise to continue cutting to squeeze every last drop of power out of their saw; especially when cutting through a large log with only seconds remaining until completion. Protect your chainsaw investment and ensure maximum power output for its intended use.
Oil and gas tanks that run dry can make operating your saw difficult, forcing its fast-moving parts to function with inadequate oils to cool and lubricate them; internal wear increases rapidly. When your saw starts working again, shut it off immediately and refill its oil; you will soon reap your reward in due course!
2. Always have an extra chain and sharpening tool handy
Sharpness can affect your saw’s inner workings, especially when cutting through dense vegetation or rocks, where hitting debris may result in its chain becoming soft and dissipating power.
Avoid continuing cutting without having a spare chain! This is particularly dangerous without one since a dull chain will increase engine wear prematurely, leading to additional costs in fuel usage and engine wear. Therefore, investing in an extra chain and an electric sharpener would be prudent for maximum performance and savings.
Sharpen two chains at once when in sharpening mode. Bring an additional pre-sharpened saw chain as a backup when using your chainsaw, and if any becomes dull, shut it off and replace it immediately before sharpening as soon as possible.
When sharpening chains, make sure both are carefully examined. Over time, chainsaw chains will become too worn to cut properly, necessitating an upgrade sooner if you use one regularly.
3. Cleaning Around Chain
While chainsaws were designed to prevent sawdust from entering their mechanisms, some will unavoidably find their way through other routes and become trapped around the chain and its bar. Therefore, it is imperative that before each use, you vacuum this area around your chainsaw’s bar and chain.
Remove the cover by loosening and removing its nuts. You may find chain oil and sawdust accumulating around and within bars, chains, and the inside of the cover; using slot-head screws, you can clean this away before reassembling and tightening the chain as required.
4. Flip the Bar
Even though the chainsaw bar is constructed of high-carbon steel and designed to endure heavy use, its structure wears down over time. When in operation, its small groove houses it as the chain rotates 50 times per second – this causes extreme frictional pressure on its edge that wears it away over time as it pushes against wood surfaces.
Flipping the bar and disassembling your saw at least once annually is essential to its lifespan. People typically use the bottom of the bar most, so flipping can even out wear faster and help prolong its service life before needing replacement.
Flip your saw more often than once or twice yearly to maximize its benefit; for optimal performance, do it every few months.
5. Avoid wasting money on two-stroke oil.
Manufacturers of chainsaws have become more focused on creating saws with less fuel content, often advocating a ratio of 50:1, or 50 parts premium gas to 1 part two-stroke engine oil, in their fuel systems.
Older saws were designed to run with more oil in fuel ratio. You can safely mix 40:1 or even 35:1 fuel mixture without harming the saw and even reduce wear as this allows oil in fuel for cooling, lubricating moving parts, and wear reduction.
Maintaining your chainsaw is crucial for optimal operation, with many negative side effects associated with poor maintenance, such as poor functioning or rusting. Here are a few tips that can be very helpful when properly taking care of your chainsaw.