There is nothing cooler than a chainsaw. They are aggressive tools that make processing heavy timber materials effortless and enjoyable. But are cordless battery-powered chainsaws ready for the spotlight? A chainsaw requires a high output of power in order to cut efficiently, without stalling or bogging down. With the advancements in battery and electronics technology over the last few years, we were anxious to see how the cordless tool world applies that technology to chainsaws.
Dewalt FlexVolt Chainsaw
The FlexVolt technology lets you use the 60V Max, 3.0Ah battery with any other 60V or 20V DeWalt tool. I really like that kind of flexibility. I consider this chainsaw to be a part of this shootout’s second tier: solid performers but needing a few improvements to move up to the top tier.
Pros include comfortable, generously–sized handles, the easiest to use tool-free adjustment system, the very nice addition of a coast-down brake for safety and speedier handling, a quarter-turn oil cap with a large flip-up tab for easier handling with gloves on, and the best oil-pouring access of all the brands tested.
Cons include an enclosed side cover design which lets chips pile up above the tension knob and clog the saw frequently, letting forth a spray of wood chips out the front of the saw which impairs the user’s visibility instead of allowing the chips to freely flow out of the bottom as they should.
DEWALT 20V Vs. 40V Vs. 60V Chainsaw
Top power tool manufacturers have the best motor technology that can deliver that strong punch, and who better to buy from than Dewalt? You won’t have to search for long before someone recommends a Dewalt cordless chainsaw to you. Professional woodworkers and homeowners praise Dewalt chainsaws as the best for high-quality cuts.
Dewalt chainsaws are also fitted with premium motors and bars for elongated service. The most recent models reviewed here also have automatic tensioning and cutting markers that make high precision cutting easy.
The brushless motors deliver the power needed for each cut and also grant you a lifetime of service with little maintenance. You also get the advantage of tool-less tensioning, which you won’t find with most standard models.
In this review, we have covered Dewalt`s latest 20V 12-Inch chainsaw, which is very light and maneuverable for light cutting. We have also reviewed their two top 16-Inch models. The 40V and Flexvolt models can handle pesky branches and tough bushels, delivering more runtime and efficiency.
Electric Chainsaw vs. Gas Chainsaw vs. Cordless Chainsaw
Corded electric chainsaws, gas chainsaws and cordless chainsaws each have their own advantages. Choosing the best chainsaws for your toolbox overall depends mostly on the level of power and mobility required, as well as the ease of operation and maintenance.
Gas chainsaws are the most powerful and ideally suited for large tasks, but they require gas and oil and are the loudest and heaviest chainsaws. This is the best chainsaw for cutting down trees if that is a job you have to do regularly. The best gas chainsaws are heavy duty and durable, and also very mobile. If you have to do a lot of cutting in a wooded area, a gas chainsaw is your best bet.
Electric chainsaws are lightweight. There’s no fuel to replenish but they do require an extension cord. This means you will have to do your cutting close to your power source. A corded electric chainsaw is very useful for lighter amounts of yard work close to home. An outdoor outlet will increase the tool’s boundary for usefulness. Electric chainsaws also produce a lot less noise than gas chainsaws, a feature for which your neighbors will be grateful.
Cordless chainsaws are powered by a rechargeable battery and can reach various levels of power without being attached to a cord. This gives the user greater mobility. Cordless chainsaws are lighter and easier to handle than gas chain saws and most corded electric chainsaws. They are also very quiet to operate which makes them the best chainsaws for home use.
Chainsaw Features and Usage Tips
The basic elements of every chainsaw are the chain, the engine and the cutting bar. The bar is the “blade” of the chainsaw around which the chain rotates. Bar lengths and engine size determine what kinds of cutting jobs your chainsaw can perform.
The length of the bar can range from 12 inches to 36 inches or more. Bars that are in the 14 to 16-inch range are ideal for occasional and light-duty use by homeowners, while 18 to 20-inch bars work well for large diameter-cutting.
Proper tension must be kept on the chain to ensure efficient operation, along with chain sharpness and lubrication. Some models allow for tool-free tension adjustments, which makes it easier to keep the machine in working order.
Engine size is measured in cubic inches or centimeters and power is measured in horsepower. Larger engines provide more power but weigh more and can cause fatigue over long periods of use.
Higher RPMs (rotations per minute) mean faster cutting with more power to cut through the material you’re working with.
Our Top Picks:
Portable, powerful, and rugged — the cordless DCCS620P1 chainsaw is an ideal fume-free easy start-up machine for the experienced gardening enthusiast and trade pro.
Its friction-reducing brushless motor provides high-efficiency operation, reduces overheating risks, and elongates battery life — while its 12-inch chain provides sufficient capacity for demolition work, beam slicing, and limb felling.
A robust build and substantial handle tread deliver reassuring durability for hardcore outdoor and construction work, and a low-kickback bar cuts back on cutting hazards.
The included 20-volt lithium-ion cell gives 90-cuts from a single charge — while eliminating the hassles of refueling, toxic gases, and carburetor issues concomitant to gas-powered machines. And, using a standard 20-volt DeWalt battery — the cell is compatible across all of the brand’s cordless line-up.
This tool hails from the DeWalt stable — a US brand built on a century of power tool experience. The DeWalt 20v DCCS620P1 12 inch unit is the flagship machine in its cordless compact chainsaw range.
The DeWalt 20v chainsaw (DCCS620B) is a special device that aims to respond to potential customers. When using this machine, you don’t really need to ask about your cutting abilities.
DeWalt 20v plays well for beginners who worry about security and performance when it comes to furniture making. Remember, woodworking can cause you severe injuries if you neglect to conduct yourself appropriately.
The DeWalt 20v chainsaw is battery-powered and features a bar of only 12 inches. Also, this chainsaw is small and thin. Therefore, it offers many distinctive features, namely the ease of use helps you operate conveniently.
As this is a cordless Dewalt, the 20V 5.0 Ah battery efficiency is advantageous. Most importantly, it brings a great combination of control and strength.
DEWALT’s 60V MAX Chainsaw features a low kick back 16″ Oregon Bar and Chain for both construction and outdoor cutting applications. Its tool-free chain tensioning and bar tightening knob enable proper bar clamping force, and it features auto-oiling for continuous lubrication. It has a 60V MAX FLEXVOLT battery that powers 60V MAX tools or it can be backwards compatible to work with 20V MAX tools.
If you’re a fan of the Woodworking tools, this chainsaw will impress you. The 60V 2AH battery is good for a reasonably long working time and it’s the lightest of all chainsaws on this list at 10LBS. With a nicely positioned steel handles that have a rubberized grip, it should be very manageable for anyone.
Many will also appreciate the 18” bar chain which gives you the ability to cut through thicker pieces of wood. Like all the others, the chain is self-lubricating. The large steel bucking spikes make it very easy to work with thicker logs.
The DEWALT 60V MAX Chainsaw features a low kick back 16 in. Oregon Bar and Chain for both construction and outdoor cutting applications. Its tool-free chain tensioning and bar tightening knob enable proper bar clamping force, and it features auto-oiling for continuous lubrication.
The durable DEWALT 12 in. Replacement Saw Chain is designed to fit 12 in. bars on 20V MAX DEWALT Cordless Chainsaws (DCCS620). This low vibration chain is designed to cut smooth and fast with minimum kickback.
Chainsaw Safety Considerations
Kickback is the primary danger facing chainsaw operators. This happens when the nose of the cutting bar connects with something solid, such as a knot or nail, causing the bar to jump back toward the operator. Take necessary precautions to avoid injury. Always wear protective eye, hand and foot gear. Operate with secure footing using both hands and stand behind the engine, keeping the blade away from you and others.