Best Budget Chainsaw Complete Buying Guide and Review

Navigating the chainsaw market and choosing the best budget chainsaw can be tricky with various brands, models, and features. Designs and specs vary, and each chainsaw type can do different cutting jobs efficiently than others. There are essential aspects to consider when buying a chainsaw, and its intended use will help determine which one to purchase.

Greenworks G-MAX 40V 16-Inch Cordless Chainsaw, Battery and...
217 Reviews
Greenworks G-MAX 40V 16-Inch Cordless Chainsaw, Battery and...
  • Brushless motor provides your tool with longer run-time,...
  • Brushless motor delivers 30% more superior torque for the...
  • Innovative brushless motor design offers 70% less vibration...

The Greenworks G-MAX 16-inch chainsaw would be the ideal option, excellent value for a pocket-friendly price tag. It has the convenience of a cordless saw system with a brushless motor that can provide 70% less vibration but 30% more torque than gas-powered versions.

The 16-inches Oregon bar and chain can also handle heavy-duty cutting tasks, a quiet yet powerful saw for most uses. What’s even better is it’s lightweight, making it easier and comfortable to hold. Plus, there are tons of safety and extra features to love about this chainsaw, like the built-in chain brake for security.

Overall, it’s a durable, affordable, and dependable chainsaw, one of the most robust cutting tools.

Types of Chainsaw

Different specs differ chainsaws from each other, but they can belong in the categories depending on their power source.

Gas Powered Chainsaw

Gas or fuel is a traditional power source for chainsaws, ideal for delivering most power among all chainsaw types. Gas-powered machines are tough to beat in terms of capabilities. It can cut through thicker and harder trees without issue, a lot better and quicker than other chainsaw types.

However, fuel-based engines require a lot of maintenance and care before and after use. Also, they release fumes that are harmful to health and the environment.

Overall, it’s ideal for use in heavy-duty cutting projects.

Corded Electric Chainsaw

Electric or corded chainsaws can be as powerful as fuel-based chainsaws, but it depends on the engine motor they use. However, it’s more convenient as it doesn’t require as much maintenance as a gas-powered engine. Also, it doesn’t release any toxic fumes and tends to be lighter than gas-powered chainsaws.

Unfortunately, the cord’s length for electric chainsaws limits its reach, even when using an extension cord. Losing power will also render this machine unusable.

This power tool can handle medium to occasional heavy cutting tasks.

Battery-Operated Chainsaw

Battery-powered chainsaws are the most lightweight among the three chainsaw types. It’s incredibly portable and straightforward to use and can start immediately after a single push. Plus, it doesn’t emit harmful fumes that can damage the health and environment.

Unfortunately, while battery-operated machines can get the job done, the runtime will only depend on the battery. Most of the time, recharging can take a few hours, and the chainsaw can only handle around 30 to 45 minutes of work.

However, battery-powered chainsaws are ideal for light to medium cutting projects.

Features to Look for in the Best Chainsaw

When looking for the best budget chainsaw, it’s essential to consider a few critical features to ensure that the machine can get the job done.

Power Source

Gas-powered chainsaws are powerful yet high-maintenance. Meanwhile, electric chainsaws can do medium-heavy tasks but have limited reach because of the power cord. The third option is getting a battery-powered chainsaw, which is lighter and easier to maneuver but is only ideal for light/medium projects.

Choosing the ideal power source for the best budget chainsaw will ultimately depend on its intended use.

Capabilities and Limitations

Much like the power source, one should also consider the chainsaw’s capabilities and limitations before buying one. Ensure that it can do the job that it’s intended to accomplish.

For example, when the goal is to cut large tree trunks, one should get a robust and more extended chainsaw to handle the project.

Bar and Chain Length

The bar and chain length for chainsaws can vary with smaller electric versions having 6 to 7 inches chains, while 20 inches or more for larger machines.

When choosing the ideal bar and chain length, the key is to consider which cutting projects it will handle. The larger the chainsaw bar, the bigger the trunk or branch diameter it can work on in a single pass.

Smaller bars are ideal for trimmer and pruning branches, while larger bars can cut firewood and tree trunks.

Weight

The chainsaw’s overall weight will affect its maneuverability and comfortability, especially for extended projects.

Gas-powered chainsaws are relatively weighty, while battery-powered and corded chainsaws are considerably lighter.

Ensure that the chainsaw is 100% comfortable before buying. Some models may feel light at first, but they can get heavy after carrying them for 30 minutes, causing fatigue or even accidents.

Extra Features

Extra features are worth checking out when buying the best budget chainsaw as they can make the job easier, safer, and hassle-free. Among the top parts for chainsaws is an automatic lubricating system, ensuring that the chain gets enough oil while working.

A comfortable and ergonomic grip around the handle will also help improve the grip and minimize fatigue. Plus, getting a decent handguard can ensure safety from flying debris. Also, a tool-less adjustment system is convenient for less standby time when adjusting the chain tension.

Lastly, a low kickback chainsaw and chain break provide maximum maneuverability and safety when the motor or machine encounters a problem.

Best Budget Chainsaw Reviews

Greenworks G-MAX 40V Cordless Chainsaw

Greenworks G-MAX 40V 16-Inch Cordless Chainsaw, 4AH Battery...
2,009 Reviews
Greenworks G-MAX 40V 16-Inch Cordless Chainsaw, 4AH Battery...
  • Our Greenworks Brushless motor provides your Greenworks tool...
  • Compatible with Greenworks G-MAX 40V Li-Ion system offering...
  • Brushless motor delivers up to 30% more torque for the...

Features:

  • Cordless chainsaw
  • 16 inches bar and chain
  • 0.375-inch saw pitch
  • 40-V Li-Ion battery
  • Brushless motor for 30% more torque
  • 70% less vibration
  • Electronic chain brake prevents accidental kickbacks

What We Like

The Greenworks G-MAX has enough power to cut wood on a single charge, thanks to its 40V Li-ion battery system. It can also make short and quick cuts on dry and softer wood with a ridiculous amount of yield for a cordless chainsaw. It provides enough runtime for most practical uses, making up to 150 cuts in between charges.

Another excellent deal with this cordless chainsaw is its brushless motor, which runs cooler and doesn’t lose efficiency even after extended use. The brushless motor also makes this chainsaw produce less vibration and relatively quieter than most devices. Without the brushes, this chainsaw has a longer motor life and doesn’t require a lot of maintenance.

The brushless motor also makes this chainsaw more efficient and precise, perfect for making excellent cutting output.

Another remarkable feature of the Greenworks G-MAX is its 16-inch bar and chain, longer than most chainsaws that only use a 14-inch bar. Plus, it comes with man safety features, including a trigger, a handguard, and a chain brake. This chainsaw features an automatic power-off once it remains inactive or unused for one minute, which helps avoid the battery from discharging.

The Greenworks G-MAX 16-inch is one of the most dependable cordless chainsaws that can handle dense and occasional heavy cutting situations. It’s a lightweight chainsaw, making it maneuverable, yet powerful.

What Can Be Improved?

The automatic oiling and lubrication system is advantageous to this chainsaw, although it comes with a drawback. Oil leakage on the bar and chain happens whenever there’s oil left inside the reservoir after turning the engine off.

Also, the battery chargers get sold separately, which is worth noting when buying this cordless chainsaw. It’s an inconvenience and a significant downside for such a respected and reliable machine.

Black+Decker MAX 20V Cordless Chainsaw

Sale
BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX Cordless Chainsaw, 10-Inch (LCS1020)
2,813 Reviews
BLACK+DECKER 20V MAX Cordless Chainsaw, 10-Inch (LCS1020)
  • 20 Volt MAX lithium battery for long run time and long life...
  • 10 inches premium Oregon low kickback bar & chain
  • Tool free blade tension system for quick adjustments

Features:

  • Cordless chainsaw
  • 10 inches bar and chain
  • 20-V Li-Ion battery
  • Lightweight at 7.2 pounds
  • Wrap around bale handle
  • Tool-free blade tension-system

What We Like

Getting the best chainsaw doesn’t have to be at your pocket’s expense, and the Black+Decker MAX 20V cordless chainsaw is an excellent example. It’s the best budget chainsaw that runs on batteries and can deal with most small or light jobs like pruning or cutting fallen branches.

Another advantage of this chainsaw is it’s lightweight at only 7 pounds, making it easier to handle even in tight and small spaces. It’s the lightest cordless version available, highly portable and compact for space-saving storage. The 20V battery is also sufficient enough for 30 to 45 minutes of cutting time in between charges.

The tool-less chain tension system is also a remarkable feature, making it quicker and hassle-free to adjust the chain while working. There are also a couple of safety features, like a wrap-around grip, a handguard, and a low kickback bar and chain. Also, the oiling system comes with a convenient window to check the oil levels quickly.

This Black+Decker cordless chainsaw is ideal for lightweight cutting jobs like pruning or trimming tree branches.

What Can Be Improved?

This Black+Decker chainsaw’s working time is a lot quicker than its charge time, which is a shame. The 30-45 minutes of work is sufficient in most cases, but it takes around 2 hours to charge the battery.

The chain oiler also has a manual system that is not as convenient as automatic lubrication systems in other machines. Also, there is the disadvantage of not putting enough oil on the bar and chain.

The 10-inch bar and chain are small, and while the machine has enough power, it can’t tackler more massive cutting works around the house.

Greenworks Pro 80V Cordless Chainsaw

Sale
Greenworks Pro 80V 18-Inch Cordless Chainsaw, 2Ah Li-Ion...
598 Reviews
Greenworks Pro 80V 18-Inch Cordless Chainsaw, 2Ah Li-Ion...
  • Up to 150 cuts with fully charged 2Ah Battery, Battery...
  • DigiPro Brushless motors are more reliable and delivers gas...
  • Steel bucking Spikes, durable metal wrap around handle and...

Features:

  • Cordless chainsaw
  • 18 inches bar and chain
  • 80-V Li-Ion battery
  • 30-minute charging time
  • Electronic chain brake operation
  • Brushless motors
  • Steel bucking spikes

What We Like

If impressive power is the primary consideration, the Greenworks Pro chainsaw boasts a remarkable 80V battery. It does heavy work similar to what a dependable 54cc gas-powered chainsaw can do without using gas.

Battery-powered chainsaws aren’t the best in terms of power, but this one’s 80V battery is enough for heavy-duty cutting requirements. It can make up to 150 cuts on one charge, making it ideal for home or professional use.

Another advantage of this chainsaw is its 18-inches long bar and chain length, capable of dealing most demanding cutting jobs. However, despite its long chain, it’s still lightweight and comfortable to use. It only weighs 20 pounds, which doesn’t make it the lightest chainsaw, but shouldn’t be too heavy or straining even after extended periods.

When using this chainsaw, the kickback isn’t too overwhelming, ideal for use even for beginners.

Safety is another unique offering of this power tool, with many features like a start button to avoid starting the machine by accident. There’s also a convenient chain guard to prevent hurting anyone while working or while the chainsaw is in storage.

This cordless chainsaw is an ideal option for both home and professional contractors. It’s light and comfortable to use, safe, and powerful to handle heavy-duty cutting tasks.

What Can Be Improved?

The Greenworks Pro chainsaw can handle most cutting jobs, but speed isn’t its strong suit. It can provide enough power but may take some time when cutting through harder and thicker woods.

The package also comes with one battery only and doesn’t include an option to purchase an extra battery. It would have been more convenient to have a replacement battery to get an extended running time for this chainsaw between charges.

Husqvarna Powerbox Chainsaw for Rancher 455

Husqvarna 100000107 Powerbox Chainsaw Carrying Case for 455...
1,156 Reviews
Husqvarna 100000107 Powerbox Chainsaw Carrying Case for 455...
  • Powerbox carrying case.HDPE (High Density Polyethylene)...
  • Fits all Husqvarna chain saws up to and including the 372xp...
  • Holds Husqvarnas exclusive filing equipment, filing vise,...

Features:

  • HDPE double-wall construction
  • Fits Husqvarna chainsaws from 372xp to 575xp
  • Stackable box
  • Includes 18 to 20 inches scabbard
  • Patented husky leash system for chainsaw protection
  • Holds all Husqvarna filing vise, equipment, spark plug, chain oil, bar, etc.

What We Like

The Husqvarna 455 Rancher is a 20 inches chainsaw well-known for its excellent power, cutting capacity, and fuel efficiency. This Powerbox chainsaw case would be ideal for holding the power tool in place and protected from the elements.

It’s a well-built chainsaw case made of high-density Polyethylene material, resistant to damage. Its stackable design also makes it easy for transport and space-saving for storage. What’s even better is it can fit most Husqvarna chainsaws, including model 136, up to the robust ones like the 372XP and 576XP.

Besides the chainsaw, this case can also handle other power tool essentials like bar and chain oil, 2-cycle oil, scrench, goggles, rags, filing vise and equipment, and spark plug. Also, it features a Husqvarna exclusive husky lease system that ensures protection and ensures fit for the equipment.

The Husqvarna Powerbox is one of the best-selling chainsaw cases for a reason. It provides a stable and secure place to hold the chainsaw and other accessories during transport or storage.

What Can Be Improved?

The room to store essential accessories is extra convenient, but they come designed and molded for Husqvarna models. It means they may not fit other equipment parts from other brands. Also, the compartment’s position for the chain and bar oil is at the bottom, which often causes things to fall out when opening the side door.

The box itself features robust plastic, but the hinges and the plastic pin that holds the lid have less material quality. It looks and feels flimsy compared to the HDPE material of the case.

Black+Decker 12-Amp Electric Chainsaw

BLACK+DECKER Electric Chainsaw, 16-Inch, 12-Amp (CS1216)
277 Reviews
BLACK+DECKER Electric Chainsaw, 16-Inch, 12-Amp (CS1216)
  • Powerful 12 Amp motor
  • 16 inch Low kickback bar and chain
  • Tool free chain tensioning

Features:

  • Corded electric chainsaw
  • 16 inches bar and chain
  • 12-Amp motor
  • Automatic oiling system
  • Tool-free chain tensioning
  • Clean window to view oil levels

What We Like

Black+Decker is a trusted brand, and its 12-Amp electric chainsaw is an ideal option for light to medium-heavy cutting jobs. It has a 16-inch blade that can handle a 14 to 16 inches trunk diameter in a single pass. Plus, this chainsaw features a relatively smaller radius at the tip to limit the kickback qualities, making it safer to handle.

This power tool is also lightweight, making it easier and more comfortable to handle, especially in lengthy cutting projects. Despite its smaller and lighter build, this machine packs enough power, sufficient enough for home use. The 14.5 amp motor is decent and can deal with light to medium cutting projects.

One of the useful design features of this chainsaw is the extension cord retainer below the handle. It’s where the power cord should get wrapped around to avoid the wire getting unplugged accidentally while working.

There are also other convenient features, like the automatic lubricating system, so there are no worries about releasing enough oil to the chain. The reservoir also features a semi-transparent window to check the oil levels.

Other safety features included are front and back handguards, low kickback chain, and a lock-off switch. It also boasts a tool-free tensioning system for a convenient and hassle-free way to deal with the chain while working.

Overall, it’s a simple-to-operate chainsaw that can carry out light to medium cutting requirements, as long as there is access to a power source.

What Can Be Improved?

The corded electric design of this chainsaw keeps it powered at all times, but the cord can get inconveniently tangled. It requires a continuous power source to get the cutting job done. Also, it doesn’t include a chain brake, a safety feature available in most chainsaw models.

Conclusion

Greenworks has a wide range of dependable power tools, but its 16-inch 40V cordless chainsaw provides excellent features for the price tag. It’s lightweight but gives enough power to handle light to medium cutting projects.

Ultimately, choosing the best budget chainsaw will depend on the power tool’s intended use, which helps define which type and what bar and chain length to purchase.

Last update on 2020-10-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Jill Sandy

Jill Sandy

Jill is a sustainable focus gardener. She loves decorating her home backyard with beautiful landscape design and creative garden care techniques she develops herself. You can reach her at jill@constantdelights.org

Chanh Ho (MD, MPH)

Chanh Ho (MD, MPH)

Chanh is our Head of Medical Review. He is a research physician at Oxford University Clinical Research Unit. After accomplishing the program of level 1 sub-specialty in Pediatrics, he was awarded the Chevening Scholarship for his Master’s degree of Public Health in the University of Edinburgh in 2019

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