The Best Electric Chainsaw (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
Cut your work time in half with an electric chainsaw.
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BY Robert Bacon / LAST UPDATED ON March 2, 2021
Whether you’re keeping on top of your perfectly pruned garden or want your 4 x 4 timber to be just the right size, you need something to cut with. Handsaws are acceptable but require a lot of effort and take a while to make any real progress. Gas chainsaws are great for heavy-duty projects but are loud, heavy, and expensive. A good alternative for most people taking on a DIY project or trimming their trees is an electric chainsaw. It has about the same power as a gas chainsaw, but it's lighter, quieter, and cheaper. Electric chainsaws come in many shapes and sizes, so picking the right one can feel like a daunting task. Thankfully, we have done the research and selected the electric chainsaws that are the best fit for various categories.
This chainsaw has one of the longest bars on the market, measuring 18 inches. This, coupled with its 15-amp power rating, makes it extremely versatile.
- Self-sharpening chain
- 18-inch bar
- Powerful motor
- Corded chainsaw, so somewhat limiting
This electric chainsaw is perfect for any odd jobs around the garden and unbeatable value for money.
- Unbeatable value for money
- Lightweight design, weighing just 7.7 pounds
- 14-inch blade is capable of tackling most jobs
- 9 amp power rating is somewhat underpowered
- Limited by its cord
This is a premium electric chainsaw that’s powerful, lightweight, and easy to use thanks to its low kickback bar.
- High efficiency, powerful brushless motor
- Low kickback bar
- 25.2 feet/second chain speed
- Weighs just 8.8 pounds
- Battery operated
- Its 12-inch bar means its uses are somewhat limited
- Slightly expensive
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Benefits of Electric Chainsaws
- Instant start. Just plug them in or clip on your battery pack, and electric chainsaws are ready to cut. This is unlike conventional gas-powered chainsaws, which need time to warm up.
- Quiet. If you don’t want to disturb your neighbors with your next big project or are conscious about damaging your hearing, then you’ll love how quiet an electric chainsaw is.
- Lightweight. For some, the thought of using a chainsaw is daunting because of how heavy they are. Electric chainsaws are much lighter than their gas counterparts, with some weighing less than 8 lbs.
- Low vibration. Another daunting aspect of using a chainsaw is how much vibration runs through them. Electric chainsaws have fewer vibrations and, as such, are easier to use.
Types of Electric Chainsaws
Many of the cheaper electric chainsaws are corded, meaning they plug directly into a power outlet. For some, this is a significant disadvantage as you generally need to have a dedicated workspace to operate from with an extension cord. But there’s a benefit to using a corded electric chainsaw, in that they can work all day without needing to recharge.
Battery-operated electric chainsaws tend to be more expensive than their corded counterparts. For people who need to carry a chainsaw around and don’t want to have just one dedicated workspace, this type of chainsaw has the versatility they need. The downside to a cordless electric chainsaw is that they can’t run all day, although if you have a spare battery pack, you can get a lot of work done.
DeWalt was founded in 1924 in Pennsylvania, and its headquarters is in Towson, Maryland. This company is a registered trademark of Black + Decker and makes a wide range of power tools for the construction, manufacturing, and woodworking industries. Its product lineup includes circular saw blades, air compressors, sanders, and more.
Black+Decker was founded in 1910 in Baltimore, Md. While Black+Decker itself is its own brand, other brands that fall under its umbrella include DeWalt, Craftsman, PORTER-CABLE, and more. Black+Decker produces a wide range of power and home improvement tools such as leaf blowers, handheld vacuums, cordless screwdrivers, and more.
EGO launched its global manufacturing business in 1993 and specialized in electric, cordless outdoor equipment. EGO manufactures what are arguably the most premium electric chainsaws on the market. Its product lineup includes lawn mowers, chain saws, portable power, and more.
Electric Chainsaw Pricing
- Under $60: At this price point, you can expect all the chainsaws to be corded and have somewhat low power ratings.
- $60 to $200: The products in this price range will be a mix of large high-power corded chainsaws and lower power, smaller battery chainsaws.
- $200 and up: These chainsaws will all be battery-operated with long bars. They’ll have brushless motors and large batteries that allow for extended run times.
The first thing you should have on your mind when buying a chainsaw is the bar size. If you want to use it to cut thick pieces of wood, you’ll need a long bar. Likewise, if you only see yourself taking on smaller projects, it makes more financial sense to get a chainsaw with a shorter bar.
A big decision you’ll make when buying an electric chainsaw is whether to get a corded or battery-operated unit. If you only plan to work from one spot and have a power outlet within reach, a corded chainsaw makes sense. But if you need to carry your chainsaw around with you or use it at various heights, then you’ll need a battery-powered product.
- Weight. If you’re going to be using your electric chainsaw a lot, or you have a slight frame, then you’ll need to consider how much it weighs. Keep in mind that a feature of more premium chainsaws is often their lightweight and compact design.
- Battery Size. If you’ve decided to buy a battery-operated chainsaw, you’ll face a wide range of battery choices, including anything from 20V to 60V battery packs. Most manufacturers tell you how long the battery takes to charge and how many cuts a fully charged battery will give.
Best Electric Chainsaws Reviews & Recommendations 2021
- Think about the projects you usually take on with a chainsaw and any ones you have planned before buying.
- If you’re purchasing a corded chainsaw, make sure you have a suitable power outlet within reach of the electric chainsaw’s power cord.
- If you need a battery-operated chainsaw, consider buying a spare battery pack if you’ll need to use it a lot throughout the day.
Q: Are electric chainsaws dangerous?
In many ways, electric chainsaws are safer than gas chainsaws as they’re lighter and have fewer vibrations. Many electric chainsaws feature a chain brake that stops the chain from rotating if the user isn’t in control.
Q: What is the best electric chainsaw?
There’s no one best electric chainsaw: the best electric chainsaw will be the one that best suits your needs and is sold at a price that you consider to be reasonable.
Q: Can an electric chainsaw cut trees?
Yes, electric chainsaws can cut through trees and trim their limbs. You’ll just need to ensure that the tree's width doesn’t exceed the chainsaw’s bar length.
Q: Are battery chainsaws as good as gas?
For some people, electric chainsaws are better than gas chainsaws as they’re quieter, lighter, and don’t require fuel top-ups or as much maintenance. With that said, gas chainsaws are great for heavy-duty projects.
We chose the Oregon CS1500 18 Inch because of its heavy-duty specs and affordable price. But if you just need a chainsaw for general maintenance, you can’t go wrong with our value choice, the Sun Joe 14 Inch. Either way, you’re sure to find an electric chainsaw that satisfies your needs on this list.