The Edge Cutter is reader-supported website. When you buy through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission.

10 Best Small Chainsaws for 2021 [Review] | The Edge Cutter

For the beginners, choosing the right woodworking tool at the first take becomes a challenging task. Amidst numerous chainsaw brands budding daily, which claim themselves to be the best of their kind, product selection becomes even harder. So, we have come up with the list of the best small chainsaws that are excellent for multiple use-case.

We have included a buyer's guide further to help you out with the considerable factors before buying a small chainsaw. In closing, you will find the top three recommendations with concise data to make your selection easier. So, let's begin.

10 Best Small Chainsaws in 2021

Black Decker Lopper Chainsaw

This Black Decker Alligator Lopper Chainsaw is the perfect tool for the pruning of tree branches, which are up to 4 inches in diameter and cut branches into smaller and manageable pieces. It comes with a 4.5 MP motor, which is excellent and powerful for the fast cutting stop. The innovative clapping design of this Chainsaw can quickly grab and cut the branches in one easy motion. It comes with a heavy-duty cutting bar and a chain.

PROS

  • Excellent for day to day use
  • Comes with a 4.5- Amp powerful motor
  • Ideal for chopping of trees and pruning of small branches
  • Provides a sideway cutting system which prevents the burying of the chainsaw in dirt 

CONS

  • The chainsaw can be used to cut only small branches and stems only up to 4inches. As a result, if you have larger trees in your backyard, it will not be beneficial. 

Sun Joe SWJ688E Electric Chain Saw

Sun Joe SWJ688E Electric Chainsaw comes with a powerful 9 MP motor, cutting branches up to 9 inches in thickness. Being one of the most versatile chainsaws, it is ideal for trimming and growing different leaves and branches. It has maximum manoeuvrability without the need for gas.

Check Out: best chainsaw chain for hardwood

PROS

  • The 9A MP motor is excellent for cutting heavy branches and does not put a lot of pressure on the lives. It can slice through branches and up to 9 inches
  • It comes with a built-in safety switch, which prevents accidental startup of the machine
  • The automatic chain lubrication system makes sure that your machine is always lubricated and ready to use

CONS

  • The Sun Joe SWJ688E does not come with a case, making it difficult to store. You need to maintain the tool daily even if you do not use it regularly. Else, the machine may accumulate a lot of dust, making it difficult to use.

Greenworks Cordless Chainsaw

Greenworks 14-inch 40V Cordless Chainsaw is perfect for home use. It comes with a manual chain tensioning and an electric start. It can make up to 60 cuts per charge. The bar length of the Chainsaw is 14 inches and comes with a comfortable over-mold grip and a chain breaker for added protection. This model in particular is one of the best small cordless chainsaws we have in the list. 

PROS

  • This cordless chainsaw has an auto lubrication system, which is perfect for home utility
  • It has an electric start system and thus produces no extra gas or fumes.
  • The chainsaw comes with an onboard scrench storage system

CONS

  • Greenwork’s oil reservoir may leak at times, which can be a bit troublesome. It also cannot cut thick wood.

Greenworks 20222 Electric Chainsaw

The Greenworks 20222 Electric Chainsaw comes with a 14-inch bar, making the cleanup process very easy. It has a 10.5 Amp electric motor, which can start within a few seconds, making it easy to use. It is corded and comes with an auto chain tensioning system.

This chainsaw works very smoothly without making a lot of noise and can be highly dependable since it does not work on batteries or a charging system. You simply need to plug it in, and you are ready to go. Greenworks is the best small chainsaw for the money since it has loads of features and is affordable. 

Interesting Read: best chainsaw for firewood

PROS

  • The auto lubrication system makes it easy to use since you do not need to lubricate it manually
  • The machine is relatively light-weight making it easy to handle
  • Comes with an electric start system
  • No need for charging or batteries
  • Perfect for limbing
  • Most affordable small chainsaw model 

CONS

  • This electric chainsaw does not have a kickback system.

Makita UC3551A Chain Saw

The Makita UC3551A chainsaw is excellent for carving and comes with a rubberized grip handle, which is too soft, making it comfortable to use. The Chainsaw has a large trigger switch, which is used for a quick start-up.

The UC3551A chainsaw has a 'tool-less' blade and various chain adjustment options, making it easy to operate and maintain.

PROS

  • Comes with an automatic chain oiler for long and continuous cutting
  • It has an electric change break, which increases the productivity
  • This chain saw does not produce any emission and can be maintained easily
  • Comes with a massive metal spike bumper which gives a perfect grip

CONS

  • Makita UC3551A has several adjustment options, which might make it difficult to operate for beginners.
  • Comes with a concise warranty

Echo CS-271T Chainsaw

The Echo CS-271T Chainsaw comes with a 12-inch bar and is powered by gasoline. It has a clutch driven oiler, which reduces the overall oil consumption. This chainsaw also comes with an inertia-type chain brake for additional safety which is why we think it’s the best small gas chainsaw.

PROS

  • Comes with a Lanyard clip for easy attachment
  • It has a professional-grade and highly powerful stroke engine for heavy-duty use
  • The G-force engine air cleaner ensures a clean supply of air at all times

CONS

  • Runs on gas, which makes it slightly difficult and expensive to use
  • Due to its dependence on oil, it can not be used whenever the need arises

Worx WG305 Electric Chain Saw

The Worx WG305 Electric Chainsaw comes with a powerful 8-Amp motor that spins at a rate of 28 feet per second. It has a compact and easy to control design and is perfect for non-professionals who want to use it to do various chores around their house. The WG305 Electric chainsaw has a 14-inch bar that can easily cut logs up to 28 inches in thickness. 

PROS

  • Worx WG305 Electric ChainSaw runs on electricity, which makes it easy to start up
  • It is deficient maintenance
  • A tool-less chain tightening system keeps the chainsaw running smoothly
  • Perfect for light to medium work such as limbing, pruning, and trimming

CONS

  • Limited by the length of the cord
  • Requires frequent adjustment of the chain tension

Oregon CS1500 Chain Saw

The Oregon CS1500 Chainsaw comes with a self-sharpening system. It has an 18-inch guide bar and a power sharp chain, which can minimize your work’s overall downtime. It can be sharpened within three seconds and can start working right away. The Oregon CS1500 does not require any assembly since it's pre-assembled.

PROS

  • Comes with an automatic oiler system with a view-through window for checking the level of oil in the reservoir
  • The 18-inch bar length is excellent for pruning and cutting of branches
  • It is the only self-sharpening electric chainsaw available
  • It does not require any gas-oil mixing or warm-ups

CONS

  • The sharpening stone and the chain for this chainsaw is sold only as a set. As a result, even if only one of these is damaged, you will have to buy the set, which is a complete waste of money.

WEN 40417 Chainsaw

The WEN 40417 Chainsaw has a brushless motor that can maximize the torque and, ultimately, the machine’s lifespan. It has a 16-inch chain which runs at a speed of 49 feet per second.

PROS

  • It has a tool-free chain tensioning system
  • Works quietly and is safe for the environment
  • Runs on a battery making it easily portable
  • No hassle of gasoline and extension cords

CONS

  • The manufacturer offers a limited warranty period of only 2 years for this 40417 chainsaw.

EGO Power+ CS1400 chainsaw

The EGO Power+ CS1400 chainsaw is a high-efficiency motor with a lower of 6300rpm. The 14 inch Oregon bar and chain is excellent for light use. The construction of this chainsaw is weather-resistant, so you do not need to worry about it if it's left outside. This CS1400 chainsaw has a 56V ARC lithium battery for incredible power and performance.

PROS

  • Comes with a highly efficient brushless motor
  • Effortless and smooth cutting with the 14inch bar and chain
  • Weather-resistant
  • Battery powers all the tools

CONS

  • Although the EGO power+ CS1400 chainsaw is battery operated, it does not come with a charger; have to buy it separately.

Buyer's Guide: Factors to Consider Before Buying a Small Chainsaw

Though all the above mentioned small chainsaws are the top trending models on the market, still a lot of factors are yet to be considered while buying an appropriate chainsaw as per your requirements. So, now we will talk about those attributes that make the product selection more precise and accurate to one's requirement:

Purpose

Before investing in a chainsaw you must decide the purpose of buying one. Determine your profession or hobby to buy the right chainsaw according to your requirement. If you want to clean up unwanted saplings and bushes of your backyard, a small chainsaw is enough to get your work done.

If you are planning for high-intensity projects or cutting off huge trees or logs, you will need a massive chainsaw.

In case, you are an electronic professional and you need to use a chainsaw, an electric gadget would be appropriate for your work. Moreover, if you are extremely efficient in handling chainsaws, battery powered as well as gas powered are simultaneously useful to fulfil any of your purposes.

Check the chainsaw type based on its power source

The chainsaws have been classified according to their power sources. Each of them has some pros and cons. Here are the three types of chainsaws you must check on before deciding the right one for you:

  • Electric powered

    Electric corded chainsaws are the best options of small chainsaws for beginners. With minimal maintenance efforts they need very small time to clean up. The common faced issue of electric corded saws is you can't take them everywhere you go. Moreover, you need to hold the extension always in your hands. They are useful for non-frequent domestic purposes and to some extent as effective as gas powered chainsaws.

  • Gas powered

    Gas powered chainsaws are a bit weighty and louder noise producing saws. These kinds of saws fuelled by the proper mixture of gasoline and oil. The fuel must be air filtered time to time. They also get smoky due to several frictional sparks. However, in spite of the drawbacks, gas powered chainsaws are the best choice for heavy duty wooden projects.

  • Battery powered

    Battery powered chainsaws are well known for their flexibility and easy handling facilities.
    You can carry them to anywhere according to your workplace. They are not that much heavy like gas powered chainsaws. They require low maintenance services and are less noisy. These are the best picks for household uses. The only drawback is that the costs of the batteries are pretty high. As the prices of the batteries are too costly, it is important to stock some for emergencies.


Size of the chainsaw and its motor

The effectiveness of a chainsaw depends on its motor or engine size. The motor size determines if you can upgrade your chainsaw as per your need and how much the saw is capable of doing heavy duty work.

Most of the small sized gas powered chainsaws are of engine sizes from 30cc upto 40cc and their bar lengths can be extended upto 16inches to make them capable of loaded jobs.

Electric chainsaws are not that much efficient for heavy duty. Those are suitable for household purposes.

Check the bar length

The bar length is yet again a priority factor to consider. The smooth execution of your projects depends on the bar length to many extent. The bar length of a chainsaw determines whether you can cut a heavy wooden log with that or just trim the saplings or small bushes.

Small bar lengthened chainsaws can't be used for felling big trees. A small barred chainsaw is enough for pruning gardens. Oversized chainsaws can affect the other trees of your garden that you have not planned to be trimmed.

Generally, the bar length of a chainsaw starts from six upto twenty six inches. Some saws are not longer than eight inches. Six inches saw are incredibly small and as effective as normal scissors.

There are mainly three variations in the bar length measurements. Such as

  • 8 inches - 14inches

    These kinds of saws are very handy and a perfect choice for general domestic users. These saws are useful cutting small trees. With the increasing bar lengths like 14 inches, the performance field of the saws gets enlarged.

  • 16 inches - 20 inches

    These are the good picks for medium heavy-duty jobs. They are not really for beginners' use as they may have strong kickback effects. Furthermore, if you are planning for long term projects, these saws won't be suitable because of their heavy weight.

  • 20 inches - 24 inches

    These machine designed chainsaws are capable of chopping almost anything. Also, they are big and heavy gears to handle. Long barred chainsaw needs a strong bearer to handle it. These are made for industrial work and should not be handled by inexperienced fellows. Long barred chainsaws are generally gas powered. Moreover, they are very noisy. If you are going to do small to medium wooden jobs, these kinds of chainsaws are not recommended.

Weight

Whenever you choose a chainsaw, first determine how much weight you can bear while working. The bar length or motor size doesn't really matter if you are unable to carry your chainsaw because of it's heavy weight. Gas powered chainsaws are a bit more weighty than electronic or battery powered ones. As the engine size of an electric chainsaw is smaller than the gas powered one, it is easier to handle. Also, the working scenario would be more pleasant. But in some cases, even if you select a lighter, short bar length and small motorized chainsaw may experience unpredictable kickbacks, whereas a bit heavier motor size can help to reduce kickbacks.

Noise management

The double engine system of the chainsaws make them become more noisy. The larger and stronger chainsaw creates more sounds. According to many customer reviews electric chainsaws are much quieter than gas powered chainsaws. Sometimes, noise pollution levels by chainsaws depend on their designs too. The approximate sound measurement of a standard is more than 120 decibels that is 32 times louder than general human conversation. Therefore, ear protection must be worn while using one of them.

Costs

Costs of chainsaws vary according to their effectiveness, all-over sizes, sizes of their motors and engines. The prices also determined as per the power sources of the chainsaws. Such as gas or fueled chainsaws are cheaper than electronic or battery powered chainsaws. Generally, the prices of basic and professional chainsaws start from $40 upto $450. Whereas, the gas powered chainsaws cost between $159 to $250. This is the best priced chainsaws if you are looking for basic lightweight ones to accomplish your small projects.

Safety Precautions when using a Chainsaw

If you are a novice in using chainsaws or just a DIY wooden-craft beginner, you must be careful while handling chainsaws. Moreover, it will be better to choose a very basic light-weight handy chainsaw, if you are a first-time buyer. Chainsaws contain very powerful motors that have the ability to chop off anything. Within a blink of your eyes it can cut off your legs and the damage can become permanent.As an inexperienced, you should know some of the safety measures that to be followed while using chainsaws. Here are some the precautions listed below:

  • Whenever you start with a chainsaw, try to begin by cutting small trees or logs
  • Be familiar with the parts of your new chainsaw
  • Before executing any big project, get trained on Tree Felling
  • Consider to enlighten yourself to the safety measures while buying a chainsaw. Sellers can help you in that case
  • Wear rubber gloves or mittens while using chainsaws. Also, you can wear gloves especially used for hard mechanical jobs
  • Use proper face-shield and earmuffs to save yourself from any harm during working with chainsaws
  • Wear aluminium or steel toe working boots, to protect your feet from being chopped off!
  • Get a proper body protection gear to protect yourself from any kind of accident
  • Have a chain catcher to protect the saw's chain from flipping
  • Use a chain brake to prevent the saw from kickbacks 
  • Start the chainsaw on the ground by keeping one leg on its rear part
  • Do not pull the chainsaw over your chest to anything as back force can't be controlled sometimes
  • Always keep the extension cord behind your back during cutting works
  • Do not start your chainsaw near any kind of inflammable products as the frequent frictions can cause sparks that may ignite the burnables
  • Avoid wearing loose clothes while using chainsaws

FAQs

Who makes the best small chainsaw?

The best small chainsaws are made by the brand Echo and the reason is simple: the chainsaw has great features and the brand has excellent customer support which include things like 1 year commercial warranty and 5 year consumer warranty. 

What is the best chainsaw for the money?

Greenworks 20222 is the best chainsaw for the money due to qualities like tool-less tensioning for quick adjustments and many more features.

Is Echo better than Stihl?

If you want a reliable option then opt for Echo while if you want an option that can do everything required in a more practical way then opt for Stihl. Both are great in their own ways. 

Conclusion

Although every small chainsaw model discussed above is exceptional to its own set of pros and cons, here are our top three recommendations from the list of our best small chainsaws:

  • Black Decker Lopper Chainsaw

    This highly purposely tool with a sturdy cutting bar is the best of its kind for day to day use.

  • Echo CS-271T Chainsaw

    If you prefer a gas powered small chainsaw, then look no further but this. This pro-grade high power stroke engine delivers cleaner air, each time.

  • Greenworks 20222 Electric Chainsaw

    If you are looking for a lightweight, electric small chainsaw within a tight budget, then this is it.

Leave a Comment