In recent times, the number of people who are trading in their gas-powered outdoor tools has increased significantly. This is because of the ease of dealing with these electrically operated power tools.
Chainsaws are one of the numerous power tools that have been redesigned to draw power from battery packs. Given their high engine power, it’s important to get a chainsaw that has the best features and good battery life.
In this article, you’ll find our top five round-up of the best cordless chainsaws and what we considered when selecting them.
To start with, here’s our top pick…
#1. Best Cordless Chainsaw – Greenworks 12-Inch Cordless Chainsaw
Greenworks is a brand synonymous with making high-quality outdoor tools.
This Greenworks 12-inch 40V cordless chainsaw is no exception to that tradition. It features a 12-inch steel chain bar and has a 3/8-inch chain pitch.
It is designed to cut through that wood with minimal kickbacks. There’s an automatic oiler that automatically applies oil to the chain for you when due. With its wrap-around handle, it’s easy to carry the chainsaw in different positions when working. Want to know more?
What You Should Know When Buying a Cordless Chainsaw
There are a handful of factors you should take into consideration now that you’ve decided to purchase a cordless chainsaw. We’ve listed them in no particular order in the lines that follow. Bear in mind that cordless chainsaws aren’t designed for heavy-duty and long cutting hours. If this is what you intend to do, then you should opt for a gas-powered model.
Having a powerful chainsaw is important. Cordless chainsaws aren’t often as powerful as the gas-powered counterparts. But they offer more than enough power for many users to handle their cutting tasks easily.
Take note of the voltage rating of the battery of the cordless chainsaw you choose. The higher the voltage rating of the battery, the better for you.
Type of Battery
There are different types of materials used in making batteries for cordless chainsaws. Available batteries in the market include the nickel-cadmium battery which works well at low temperatures. They are easy to recharge, have a high discharge rate and long life. But they also have less power and are heavier.
Aside from it, you’ll also find the Nickel Metal hydride batteries and the Li-ion batteries which are the darling of the trio. They are low maintenance, have more power, discharge slowly, and recharge faster.
To cut the long story short, most of the batteries on the market are Li-ion batteries. However, you’ll come across the other ones every now and then. Do your best to avoid them.
Take note of your battery’s runtime as this can greatly affect how much work you do with your cordless chainsaw. If the runtime is poor, then you’ll end up being frustrated while you’re working.
This refers to the size of the chainsaw’s blade. Generally, it hovers between 10” and 12” but you’ll still find larger models in the market. The size of the blade determines how deep the blade can cut into a log of wood, for instance.
Vibrations & Noise
This is often overlooked but the truth is that some cordless chainsaws are quieter than others although all cordless chainsaws are generally quieter than their gas-powered counterparts. As for the vibrations, you’ll experience a lot of it, but with an anti-vibration shock-absorbing handle, you’ll feel minimal vibrations when using the chainsaw.
A chainsaw isn’t a tool anyone picks up and begins to use. It requires a great deal of care when in use and otherwise. Safety features like a 2-step trigger system, alert systems with LEDs, chain catcher, lockout switch, blade guard, and bucking spikes.
The 2-step trigger system ensures that your chainsaw will need two presses the trigger to be activated after being switched on. This prevents accidental activation. On the other hand, the alert system beeps or shines an LED notification light to signify that the chainsaw is on/active.
Furthermore, the chain catcher prevents a chain that breaks when in use from being thrown back at you – it’s very painful. As for the lock-out switch, it prevents activation of the chain when it isn’t pressed. There’s also a chain adjuster that allows you to easily adjust your chainsaw’s chain without needing a screwdriver.
For instance, you turn it on before pressing the trigger and using the chainsaw to work.
If you want to take a rest, you press it to deactivate the chain although you don’t turn off the chainsaw. It also prevents the chainsaw from damaging things if it mistakenly falls from your grip while in use.
The blade guard keeps you protected while you’re using the chainsaw. It may, however, take a great deal of space on your blade. Nevertheless, safety comes first.
Weight is the next big thing to consider when buying a cordless chain saw. If your chainsaw is heavy, your arms will get weak easily and this will lead to an increase in the number of breaks you’ll take.
This, in turn, leads to an increase in the amount of time spent working on a particular job. The lighter the weight, the more portable the chainsaw.
Generally, chainsaws need oil to run smoothly. Some chainsaws have an automatic oiling mechanism while others need to be oiled manually. It is also important to take note of how easy it is to fill the oil tank and know the oil level at a glance.
Ease of Use
Generally, most cordless chainsaws are easy to use and require little prior knowledge to get started. But you’ll encounter models with strange features you’ll probably not use in the long run.
Most recent outdoor power tools feature a brushless motor. The brushless motor is better than older motors which were designed to use brushes and commutators. With a brushless motor, the machine runs quieter and lasts longer.
Cordless Chainsaw Reviews
Here’s our expert opinion of these five highly sought after cordless chainsaws. You’ll find chainsaws from brands like Black+Decker, Greenworks, Dewalt, Craftsman, and LiTheli.
#1. Best Cordless Chainsaw – Greenworks 12-Inch Cordless Chainsaw
Bar Length: 12-inch
Features: 12-inch size, lightweight, translucent oil tank, about 90 minutes runtime, strong build quality, wrap-around handle, auto chain tensioning, offers 75 cuts per charge, automatic oiler, and electric start button.
The Greenworks 12-Inch Cordless Chainsaw is dear to us, not because of the brand, but because of its features.
To start with, it is lightweight – its weight hovers around 6lbs. It features an ergonomic wrap-around handle that offers a great deal of flexibility. This handle gives you the freedom to explore multiple cutting angles to find what suits you.
There’s an auto chain tensioning feature alongside a translucent oil tank. The translucent oil tank allows you to know the oil level in the chainsaw at a glance. Let’s not fail to mention that it also has an automatic oiler for the chain.
The Greenworks 12-Inch Cordless Chainsaw has a top-notch build quality. It’s evident in other Greenworks appliances like this chipper shredder. There’s an 18-inch variant of this 12-inch model and it offers more cuts, a brushless motor, and of course, a longer battery life.
Bar Length: 10-inch
Features: lightweight, 20V battery, low kickback bar, interchangeable battery, tool-free chain tensioning, manual oiler, wrap around bale handle, etc.
This Black+Decker cordless chainsaw shares a few similarities with the Greenworks 12-Inch Cordless Chainsaw we reviewed above. However, it has a 20V battery and a 10-inch cutting bar as against the 40V and 12-inch bar on the former.
We love the interchangeable battery that comes with it as it allows you to do more work with it. You can pick a battery from your string trimmer and toss it in and you’re good to go.
The BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX Cordless Chainsaw weighs about 7.2lbs and is undeniably lightweight. It comes with a wrap-around handle and you get different cutting angles with the handle.
There’s also tool-free chain tensioning as well as easy to use controls. Unfortunately, the chainsaw doesn’t come with an automatic oiler, but that’s not a major deal-breaker for many.
When you consider the enticing price it goes for and the few bucks you’ll save interchanging batteries, then you’ll understand why we say it’s worth owning.
Bar Length: 14-inch
Features: double guard steel bar, lightweight, 14-inch bar, brushless motor, handguard, chain brake safety guard, chisel tooth chain, tool-free chain tension adjustment, superb design.
In our own honest opinion, the LiTHELi 40V 14 inches Cordless Chainsaw is a great cordless chainsaw. It’s a tad more expensive than we expected and weighs 6lbs more than our overall best cordless chainsaw, but we still like it – by the way, it’s still lightweight.
The LiTHELi chainsaw is equipped with a brushless motor that draws power from a 40V battery. This battery gives more than an hour of work time.
As expected, it also features a tool-free chain adjustment knob, a handguard, a brake lever, an ergonomic handle, and of course, a chisel tooth chain for easy cutting. The ergonomic also gives you a great deal of cutting angles to choose from.
Let’s not also fail to mention that there’s a translucent oil window. Unlike the BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX Cordless Chainsaw, this chainsaw has an automatic oiler that takes the responsibility off your shoulders so you can concentrate on your work.
Bar Length: 12-inch
Features: lightweight, low kickback Oregon bar and chain, brushless motor, 12-inch bar, tool-free chain tensioning, ergonomic and comfortable handle, auto oiling system, translucent oil indicator, etc.
Occupying the fourth spot on our list – in no particular order – is the DEWALT DCCS620P1 20V Cordless Chainsaw. It’s lightweight and comes with as many features as we’ve seen so far on other cordless chainsaws.
The Dewalt chainsaw weighs about 8.8lbs. It sports an ergonomic handle with good cutting positions. The chainsaw features an automatic oiling system with a translucent oil indicator window.
It also comes with a brushless motor that draws its power from a 20V battery that is interchangeable with tons of other Dewalt tools. The DEWALT DCCS620P1 20V Cordless Chainsaw has a 12-inch Oregon bar and chain for cutting. It cuts well but it costs more than we think is necessary.
Bar Length: 12-inch
Features: lightweight, 20V battery, 12-inch cutting bar, tool-free tensioning, bubble lever, automatic oiling, ergonomic handle with blade guard, etc.
The CRAFTSMAN V20 Cordless Chainsaw is our final pick of the day and it is an embodiment of finesse and great craftsmanship. It is a chainsaw with a 12-inch cutting bar and tons of other good features.
As we expected, its lightweight – weighs about 14lbs – and is beautifully constructed. The chainsaw is powered by a 20V battery with an impressive runtime of up to an hour depending on how long it’s been in use.
It also has other prominent features like the automatic oiling system, tool-free tensioning for the chain and even a bubble-lever to help you make good horizontal cuts all the time. The chainsaw’s handle offers good hand protection and more cutting angles.
There are a few deal breakers with this cordless chainsaw. First, it’s slightly priced more than other cordless chainsaws on this list, and it doesn’t even have any special bells. And secondly, we think Craftsman should have kept the weight of the chainsaw below 10lbs.
Nevertheless, it still gets a yes from us.
Balanced weight, ease of use, impressive runtime, tons of safety features, and strong build quality are the hallmarks of a good cordless chainsaw. Fortunately, we listed only chainsaws with these qualities in the review above.
If you’ve used any of them or any other one which you think is better than the ones above, let us know.