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Best Electric Chainsaws 2020 – Top Picks, Reviews & Guide

an electric chainsaw

Electric chainsaws are not as powerful as gas-powered ones, but they do have their advantages. They are so popular with homeowners that the market has been swamped with all kinds of them. We have reviewed many of them and made a list of ten we think you may like. To make sure you have complete information about each, we will provide you with some of the good and bad of each one.


A Mini Comparison of our 2020 Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
DEWALT DCCS670X1 DEWALT DCCS670X1
  • Low kickback
  • Chain brake
  • Automatic oiling system
  • Best Corded Pick
    Second place
    Makita UC4051A 16 Makita UC4051A 16"
  • Built-in brake
  • Auto-tension chain system
  • Rubber handle
  • Best Value
    Third place
    WORX WG303.1 WORX WG303.1
  • Auto-oiling system
  • Low kickback
  • Auto-tension
  • Oregon CS1500 18 Oregon CS1500 18"
  • Tool-free adjustment system
  • Lightweight
  • Self-sharpening
  • BLACK+DECKER LPP120 BLACK+DECKER LPP120
  • Eight-inch cutting bar
  • Extension
  • 20-volt lithium-ion battery
  • The 10 Best Electric Chainsaws

    1. DEWALT DCCS670X1 Electric Chainsaw – Best Overall

    DEWALT DCCS670X1 Cordless Electric Chainsaw

    The DEWALT DCCS670X1 is our pick for best cordless electric chainsaw because it’s lightweight and easy to use. It has a 16-inch bar to cut larger pieces of wood with very little kickback, and a safety chain brake to stop the chain if it does kickback.

    For your convenience, it has an automatic oiling system and a tool-free tensioning system to allow you to make quick and effortless adjustments to your chain.

    The only drawbacks with this saw are that the washer used to hold the retaining bolt in place is thin, and the hole is too big for the bolt. This allows the bolt to slip, which in turn loosens up the chain. The trigger to operate this chainsaw is not set up like a traditional chainsaw is. It’s set up like every other DEWALT power tool.

    Pros
    • Lightweight
    • 16-inch bar
    • Low kickback
    • Chain brake
    • Automatic oiling system
    • Tool-free tensioning
    Cons
    • Cheap washer on retaining bolt
    • Trigger not set up like traditional chainsaw

    2. Makita UC4051A 16″ Corded-Electric Chainsaw – Best Corded Pick

    Makita UC4051A 16

    The Makita UC4051A is our choice for best corded electric chainsaw. It has a 16-inch bar run by a 14.5 amp motor. It includes a built-in brake for safety if you have some kickback, and an auto-tensioning system that allows you to make adjustments on the chain without any tools.

    For your comfort, the handle has a rubber coating, giving you an excellent firm grip. It is also lightweight and can be used by almost anyone.

    One issue we found with the Makita UC4051A is that although it has a large oil reservoir, it is in a really awkward place and is hard to fill. The blade on this saw is also narrow, so the arms get jammed up easily, and the chain loosens up quickly no matter how tight you have the locking bolt.

    Pros
    • 16-inch bar
    • 5 amp motor
    • Built-in brake
    • Auto-tension chain system
    • Rubber handle
    • Lightweight
    Cons
    • Oil reservoir in awkward place
    • Narrow blade
    • Chain loosens easily

    3. WORX WG303.1 Electric Chainsaw – Best Value

    WORX WG303.1 Powered Chain Saw

    The WORX WG303.1 Powered Chain Saw offers you the most for the money. It has a 16-inch bar that runs on a 14.5 amp motor. The blade has very little kickback to it, but there’s a safety chain brake to stop the chain if it does.

    The auto-oiling system will keep your chain lubricated, so you don’t have to worry about it. The problem is that you can’t control the amount of oil that is distributed. This chainsaw doesn’t take standard bar oil. It requires a thinner oil that tends to leak out of the reservoir.

    It also has an auto-tensioner to make any adjustments to the chain effortless on your part. However, this tensioner can get clogged with debris and stop functioning.

    Pros
    • 16-inch bar
    • 5 amp motor
    • Auto-tension
    • Low kickback
    • Chain brake
    • Auto-oiling system
    Cons
    • Doesn’t take standard bar oil
    • Leaks oil
    • Chain tensioner can get clogged

    4. Oregon CS1500 18 Inch Chainsaw

    Oregon CS1500 18 Inch Electric Chainsaw

    The Oregon CS1500 is one of the best 18-inch electric chainsaws. Its 18-inch bar is run by a 15 amp motor. It has a tool-free adjustment system that allows you to adjust your chain when needed without hunting down tools. It’s lightweight and easy for almost anybody to use.

    The problem with this saw is the chain. It’s very thin and doesn’t like to stay on the bar. It comes off frequently, which is useful in one way. It is tough to perform any maintenance duties with the chain on the bar. This saw is also advertised as being self-sharpening. The idea is good, but it doesn’t work too well. Standard chains stay sharp longer.

    Pros
    • 18-inch bar
    • 15 amp motor
    • Tool-free adjustment system
    • Lightweight
    • Self-sharpening
    Cons
    • Thin chain
    • Chain comes off bar easily
    • Chain maintenance difficult when it’s on the bar
    • Self-sharpener needs help

    5. BLACK+DECKER LPP120 Electric Pole Chainsaw

    BLACK+DECKER LPP120

    The BLACK+DECKER LPP120 is our choice for best electric pole chainsaw. It has an eight-inch cutting bar that allows you to cut up to a six-inch diameter piece of wood. It also includes an extension that can extend your reach up to 14 feet. You do need to use caution if you’re using it fully extended, because it gets quite flexible at that point. We also find that the chain loosens more easily than most others while being used.

    This chainsaw runs on a 20-volt lithium-ion battery, but it only lasts about 20 minutes before it loses its charge, and it takes forever to recharge. You can either be patient and let it recharge to finish your work, or you can purchase a second battery to use while the first is charging. Batteries are quite expensive, though, so you have to decide what is most important for you.

    Pros
    • Eight-inch cutting bar
    • Extension
    • 20-volt lithium-ion battery
    Cons
    • Flexible at full length
    • Chain loosens easily
    • Batteries don’t last
    • Long charge time

    6. BLACK+DECKER LCS1240 Cordless Chainsaw

    BLACK+DECKER LCS1240 40-volt Cordless Chainsaw

    The BLACK+DECKER LCS1240 has a 12-inch bar powered by a 40-volt lithium-ion battery. The battery doesn’t last too long, though. If you’re using it for longer-lasting jobs, you may want to consider purchasing a second battery, but that’s expensive.

    This saw has an automatic oiling system, but the reservoir that holds the oil leaks terribly, so be aware that this thing will consume a lot of oil. There’s a wraparound handle for your comfort and a tool-free chain tensioning system that allows you to make adjustments to your blade quickly.

    This is a small chainsaw that doesn’t have a whole lot of power and is made to cut through brush and smaller branches. You’ll need a larger chainsaw for bigger jobs.

    Pros
    • 12-inch bar
    • 40V lithium-ion Battery
    • Automatic oiling system
    • Wraparound handle
    • Tool-free chain tensioning
    Cons
    • Expensive batteries
    • Consumes a lot of oil
    • Not much power
    • Not for big jobs

    7. Remington RM1425 Corded-Electric Chainsaw

    Remington RM1425 Lightweight Corded Electric Chainsaw

    The Remington RM1425 Lightweight Corded Electric Chainsaw has an external tensioner and a 14-inch cutting bar that runs on an eight amp electric motor. The oiling system requires you to push a button to release the oil. This is nice because it gives you some control over how much, or when, oil is distributed. The problem is that the oil reservoir is tiny and doesn’t hold much. It also doesn’t seal tightly, so if you don’t empty the chamber every time you finish using it, the oil left inside will leak all over the place.

    This chainsaw has a chain that loosens quickly, no matter how tight the adjuster screw is. Between the chain loosening and the low amperage, this particular chainsaw is only suitable for cutting small softwood trees and limbs. It’s not powerful enough to handle hardwood at all, let alone anything significant.

    The Remington RM1425 also does not have a wraparound handle, so it is challenging to hold it steady to get a level cut.

    Pros
    • 14-inch bar
    • Eight amp electric motor
    • Push-button oiling system
    • External tensioner
    Cons
    • Small oil reservoir
    • Oil reservoir must be emptied after each use
    • Chain loosens easily
    • Only good for small softwood trees and limbs
    • No wraparound handle

    8. Greenworks 40V Electric Chainsaw Kit

    Greenworks 40V Cordless Chainsaw Kit (20262)

    The Greenworks 40V Cordless Chainsaw Kit has a 16-inch cutting bar and runs on a brushless motor powered by a 40-volt lithium-ion battery. This is a pretty decent battery, as it will hold a charge for about an hour, but that usually isn’t long enough for whatever you’re working on. You have two options. You can either purchase a second expensive battery or wait the two hours it will take for the used one to recharge.

    There’s very little kickback with this chainsaw, but there is a built-in chain brake to stop the chain immediately if it happens. There are issues keeping the chain tight, though. It seems that no matter what you do, the chain loosens quickly, which requires you to retighten it.

    Like the Remington, this chainsaw requires that you empty the oil reservoir after each use, or it will leak all over the place. It doesn’t matter if it is stored in an upright position; it still leaks like a sieve.

    We recommend that you read the manual to see exactly how your chainsaw works, especially if you’re new to electric saws. While you’re reading, you’ll see that there is a long list of things that you need to avoid, or your saw will skip. If it does, you have to power it down completely and then turn it back on. This process takes about ten seconds, which isn’t a long time, but if it happens frequently…

    Pros
    • 16-inch cutting bar
    • Brushless motor
    • 40-volt lithium-ion battery
    • Chain brake
    Cons
    • Battery only lasts one hour
    • Two-hour recharge time
    • Chain needs constant adjustment
    • Leaks oil
    • Must power down if saw skips
    • Long list of things that cause skips

    9. Sun Joe SWJ599E Handheld Chainsaw

    Sun Joe SWJ599E Electric Handheld Chainsaw

    The Sun Joe SWJ599E Electric Handheld Chainsaw has a 14-inch cutting bar with a self-lubricating oiling system. The saw isn’t very powerful. It will only cut wood up to five inches in diameter. It also has issues with the chain coming off easily when you are cutting. Like a few others, this chainsaw has a small oil chamber that leaks when the saw is not in use.

    The Sun Joe does have a safety switch to keep your chainsaw from starting accidentally. It also has other so-called safety features, but they are of inferior quality. For example, it has a kickback shield, but the plastic it’s made of is fragile and will shield you from absolutely nothing. These features are in place, though, so if this is all that you can afford, just use with caution knowing that safety features are there but not worth a whole lot.

    Pros
    • 14-inch cutting bar
    • Self-lubricating
    • Safety switch
    Cons
    • Only cuts wood up to five inches in diameter
    • Chain comes off easily
    • Poor quality safety features
    • Small oil chamber
    • Leaks oil when not in use

    10. Earthwise LCS32010 Chainsaw (Electric version)

    Earthwise LCS32010 Cordless Electric Chain Saw

    The Earthwise LCS32010 Cordless Electric Chain Saw has a 10-inch covered cutting bar that runs on a 20-volt battery. This battery will only last for approximately 15 minutes and then takes an hour to recharge. It also doesn’t give the saw very much power. It only has enough to cut small branches.

    This saw has a rubber-covered molded handle to provide you with the comfortable and firm grip required to maintain control over it. It also has an automatic oiling system, but it puts out too much oil and leaks out of the reservoir even if sitting idle for a few minutes.
    The chain on this chainsaw loosens up and jumps off easily. When you’re trying to tighten it up or put it back on, you can’t find the tensioner or adjustment screws. When you try to look it up in the manual, it doesn’t show where they are located.

    Pros
    • 10-inch bar with cover
    • 20-volt battery
    • One-hour fast charge
    • Rubber-covered handle
    • Automatic oiling system
    Cons
    • Battery only lasts about 15 minutes
    • Small branches only
    • Leaks oil
    • Chain comes off easily
    • Worthless manual

    Buyer’s Guide

    Range of chainsaws and what they can do:

    1. Light-duty:
    Light-duty chainsaws don’t weigh much and have an average horsepower of three. They are made for light yard work and can be used by anyone.
    2. Mid-range:
    Mid-range chainsaws weigh between 10 and 13 pounds and are designed for heavier workloads, such as cutting firewood.
    3. Professional:
    Professional-grade chainsaws are mostly used by loggers or landscapers. They are designed to handle cutting through much larger trees or stumps than the others. They weigh anywhere up to 22 pounds and have a longer bar.

    Corded vs. Cordless:

    Corded:

    Corded chainsaws limit the distance you can get from an outlet, but you can easily use an extension cord to make it longer. Just make sure you have a heavy-duty extension cord that can handle the power load.

    One significant advantage of a corded saw is that all you have to do to start it is plug it in. You don’t have to worry about tough pull-starts.

    Cordless:

    Cordless chainsaws give you more freedom to move around as you please, but they are operated with batteries that have a limited lifespan. You can always purchase a second battery to use while the first is recharging; however, batteries are on the expensive side.

    Maintenance:

    You want your tools to last as long as possible, so to keep your electric chainsaw in peak condition, there are three things you need to do every time it’s used:

    1. Always make sure the chain is tight and properly oiled before using it.
    2. Make sure your chain is sharp before using it.
    3. Always clean off any debris that has accumulated on the saw when you’re finished with it.

    Noise Level:

    Chainsaws, in general, are very loud. Electric ones are much quieter than gas-powered ones, though. Even though they aren’t as loud, you’ll still need to wear ear protection to block out the majority of the sound.

    Easy Start:

    Electric chainsaws are the easiest to start because you just have to plug them in and hit the power button.

    Automatic Oiling System:

    1. Fixed flow:
    Chainsaws with a fixed flow oiling system will automatically oil your chain every time it’s used. You have no control over the amount of oil that is released, though.
    2. Adjustable flow:
    Chainsaws with an adjustable flow also release oil to the chain every time it’s used, but you can control how much oil is released.

    How to use an electric chainsaw:

    1. Wear proper protective gear: gloves, safety glasses, and ear protection.
    2. Know your equipment. Electric chainsaws aren’t difficult to operate, but you’ll still want to read your owner’s manual so that you know how to use it properly.
    3. Know the rules of basic cutting to reduce the risk of any accidents happening.
    4. Be careful of throwbacks. Make sure your chain is tight and that you have a good grip on the saw at all times while it is in use.

    How to tighten a chain:

    The chain on a chainsaw becomes loose as you use it. To tighten it back up again, all you have to do is use the tension screw at the base of the bar to turn it clockwise.

    Conclusion

    Now that we’ve given you some ideas of things to look for when shopping for a chainsaw, let us go over the saws we reviewed that we think may work for you:

    1. DEWALT DCCS670X1 Cordless Electric Chainsaw – Top Pick
    2. Makita UC4051A 16″ – The Best Corded Electric Chainsaw
    3. WORX WG303.1 Powered Chain Saw – Best for the Money
    4. Oregon CS1500 18 Inch Electric Chainsaw
    5. BLACK+DECKER LPP120 – The Best Electric Pole Chain Saw
    6. BLACK+DECKER LCS1240 40-volt Cordless Chainsaw
    7. Remington RM1425 Lightweight Corded Electric Chainsaw
    8. Greenworks 40V Cordless Chainsaw Kit (20262)
    9. Sun Joe SWJ599E Electric Handheld Chainsaw
    10. Earthwise LCS32010 Cordless Electric Chain Saw

    Hopefully, we have helped you narrow down the field of chainsaws to look at, and you feel confident in finding the right one to meet your needs.

    SEE ALSO: which is our favorite chainsaw mill?

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