Electric chainsaws, both corded and cordless, are becoming increasingly more popular options for consumers. Electric chainsaws are more cost-effective than gas-powered models, require little or no maintenance, are easier to start, and are far quieter and more ergonomic. They utilize electric motors, which frees the consumer from breathing noxious fumes as they work. They are meant to be used for small to medium tree cutting tasks and are not recommended for cutting down large trees.
Today we are reviewing 8 electric models that we feel rank among the best available in the marketplace. Please read on to discover which model the best electric chainsaw is the perfect choice for you.
Top Features & Research
We have carried out considerable research on electric chainsaws to provide you with helpful reviews to aid your purchasing decision. We examined the particular merits of each model, their pros, and cons, any unique features, what warranties they are covered by, and which are easier to use, etc. Please read on to discover which corded chainsaw is best for you. We utilize a star system for our ratings, with 5 stars being the highest possible rating given. We hope that our analysis of these 8 electric chainsaws will be useful to you.
All of the electric chainsaws reviewed here today vary in manufacturer warranties. All buyers should consider the warranty of a product carefully before purchase.
Makita products come with a one-year warranty and a 30-day return policy. WORX products carry a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty. Oregon products are backed by a 1-year professional warranty and a 2-year consumer warranty. Remington and Homelite products have a 2-year limited warranty, and Black & Decker and Sun Joe products have a full 2-year home use warranty. GreenWorks products have a 4-year limited warranty.
Corded electric chainsaws are limited in the power they provide because home electrical sockets are generally manufactured to accommodate 15 amps. This is the primary reason why the majority of corded electric chainsaws are only suited for light-duty cutting. It’s essential to buy the correct extension cord to get maximum power out of your chainsaw. For 10-gauge 7-12 amps use a 100 ft. extension cord. For 12 gauge 7-12 amps use a 50 ft. extension cord. There are a few exceptions out there like our number one choice, the Makita UC4051A, which matches the power of smaller gas chainsaws.
Many users of gas-powered units will need to get used to the decrease in cutting power of electric chainsaws. If you don’t need to cut down large trees, then an electric saw is just fine for cutting smaller limbs and trees, trimming, pruning, and cutting up firewood logs. For smoother cutting, it is necessary to lubricate the chain which will prevent wear and tear. The exception to this rule is our top choice, the Makita UC4051A. It has a 15 amp proprietary motor which gives it exceptional cutting power for an electric chainsaw.
Noise & Vibration
Electric chainsaws overall produce less noise and fewer vibrations than gas operated models. Did you know that a gas chainsaw can generate over 100 decibels of noise, which is louder than a jet taking off, and is equal to the noise level generated by a large rock concert? An electric chainsaw is more comfortable and convenient to work with. Operators will not develop HAVS (Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome) caused by operating gas chainsaws for a long period. Finally, a growing number of communities have strict rules regarding noise levels, which is why many people have made the switch to electrically powered machines.
Operators of electric chainsaws must follow a few basic safety tips:
- Wear heavy duty clothing, gloves, and boots, and hold the saw firmly using both hands
- Press the saw firmly against the wood while holding the throttle lockout and squeezing the throttle
- While cutting, press the chain-oil bulb every 30 seconds to reduce friction and oil the chain
- Never touch the saw’s upper tip to any object since that will cause rotational kickback
- Never pinch the chain, since that can cause linear kickback where the saw can push back at you at full speed
- Make sure to read the owner’s manual before operating any chainsaw
Ease of Use
In comparison to gas powered chainsaws, electric models are easier to maintain, more lightweight and easier to use, and simpler to start. Startup is achieved by simply pushing a button. The lighter weight of electric chainsaws requires an operator to use less strength, which reduces overall fatigue. Electric saws also require much less maintenance because you won’t have to deal with a complex motor.
How To Pick The Best Electric Chainsaw For You
Here are a few tips on picking the right corded electric chainsaw for you:
- Don’t use a cord longer than 100 feet – If you use a cord that’s too long the saw’s power supply may suffer
- Take time to learn how to work with the restrictions of using a cord – If you enter rough ground or a thicket of trees, the cord can either unplug or get snagged easily
- Choose a chainsaw that has an automatic bar oiler – This will save you from having to stop frequently to oil the bar
- Select a chainsaw that features tool-less tensioning – Simply turn the dial located next to the bar, and that will automatically tighten the chain
Depending on your needs, you might want to purchase a cordless electric chainsaw. Cordless saws are lightweight, low maintenance, provide unlimited mobility, and are powered by state-of-the-art rechargeable batteries.
What Will You Be Cutting?
It’s important to know before purchasing your electric chainsaw whether you need a saw for light use, medium use, or heavy use. Light use for cutting shrubs and small trees requires a chainsaw with a 6-14” long cutting bar. Medium use for cutting logs, branches, or trees requires a 16-18” long cutting bar. Heavy use for cutting down thicker and wider trees will require a 20” cutting bar.
If you use a lighter weight model to cut down thicker tree trunks, it may get damaged. Make sure to read your manual to find out if your electric chainsaw can be used to cut down thicker trees.
Have You Ever Used a Chainsaw Before?
If you’ve never used a chainsaw before, it’s a good idea to start off with an electric saw because it will be safer and easier to handle. Prepare for work by putting on a hard hat or helmet, safety gloves, and safety goggles, and make sure to read the user’s manual before you do anything. Next, fill the blade reservoir with SAE 30-weight-oil or whatever your manual recommends. Plug the power cord into the power outlet. Face the chainsaw blade away from you, engage its safety switch and pull the trigger. Choose a smaller tree to practice on. Once you’re used to cutting small trees, you can move on to larger trees. Make sure the saw doesn’t run out of oil, use common sense, and enjoy yourself!
How Much Power Do You Need?
If the trees and branches that you plan to cut are a maximum of 6” thick, you will be able to do the job with an output of 9 amps. However, if you are planning to take down trees or branches that are 20” thick or more, you will need at least a heavy duty 15 amp chainsaw to do the job right.
Getting the right extension cord for your corded chainsaw is important. A 16 gauge 50-foot cord may be sufficient for a lighter chainsaw with 12 amps, but a heavier machine will need at least a 12 or 10 gauge cord for safety reasons.
Guide Bar Length
A guide bar is the protrusion shaped like a log that houses the chain of the chainsaw. Guide bars usually range in size between 6” and 32”. A guide bar length of 12”-14” will be sufficient for projects up to and including small-sized trees. For projects including medium-sized trees and limb trimming, the guide bar should be 16”-20” long. Cutting firewood requires a 16” guide bar.
How Often Will You Use The Chainsaw?
Before purchasing a new chainsaw, it’s important to take into consideration how often you will be using the saw. If you have many trees to cut or a very large property and plan to be using a chainsaw on a daily basis, then our recommendation would be to buy a gas-powered unit. If you are a homeowner who has smaller trees to cut or prune or only plans to use the chainsaw to clean up after storms, then an electric chainsaw would be the right choice for you. Electric chainsaws are also lighter in weight, easier to operate, more ergonomic, and produce significantly less noise.
Pros & Cons Vs. Gas and Cordless
There is two types of electric chainsaws – corded and cordless battery-powered. Each type has its particular advantages and disadvantages. In this section, we will compare the pros and cons of electric chainsaws versus gas.
- Electric chainsaws are lightweight – gas powered saws are heavy, since users are toting around tanks of fuel. Heavy chainsaws lead to user fatigue
- Electric models are much quieter than gas saws
- Electric models are eco-friendly, which emit a gas odor while operating which can be harmful to the environment
- Electric models are usually less expensive than gas chainsaws
- Electric saws are easy to operate – just turn on a switch and go – in contrast gas chainsaws are harder to operate. You must pull on a cord various times in order to ignite the motor
- Electrically powered chainsaws are very cost-effective – Gas powered models require purchasing lots of fuel and need regular maintenance
- Electric saws are safer to operate – Gas powered chainsaws frequently give kickbacks (when a blade tip collides with an object that forces the machine to kick back at its operator)
- Electric model are much less noisy – They can be operated at any time of the day and in any neighborhood, including those with noise ordinances
- An electric chainsaw can be stored anywhere, and frequently comes with a convenient transport and storage case – In contrast, a gas chainsaw must be stored very carefully. Fuel is flammable, so it can’t be stored anywhere where there might be a danger of fire. Users must remove all the oil and gas from the machine before storing it, and if the chainsaw is being stored for longer than 30 days, the operator will need to remove the spark plug
- Electric saws never get flooded – In fact, there are no fuel considerations at all
- Gas powered chainsaws are perfect for heavy-duty work – They’re great for professional use, for large ranches or farms, or if you have many trees on your property. Electric products are not as powerful and are most useful for lighter work
- Corded chainsaws will confine your work to one area – Gas powered chainsaws allow the user to move around at will
- Gas powered chainsaws are better for storm cleanup
- Gas powered models may have cutting bars that are 42” long – In contrast, an electrically powered chainsaw has a much smaller cutter bar, usually ranging between 15″-18” long. However, recent studies have demonstrated that an 18” chain bar is adequate for almost 100% of cutting chores needed around an average property
Difference Between Cheap and Expensive Chainsaw Models
When shopping for a good electric chainsaw, it’s necessary to notice the differences between cheaper and more expensive models. Here is a list detailing some of the differences:
- Cheaper chainsaws generally have some features which are poorly designed, i.e., a flawed sprocket which allows the chain to slide off too easily during operation, or a motor that could burst into flames after only an hour of use
- Cheaper models tend to malfunction after only a few uses
- The warranties of cheaper options are less robust, and frequently customer service is not helpful
- Cheaper chainsaws will have mostly plastic parts
- More expensive models feature advanced engineering for faster cutting and are easier to operate and maintain
- Change speeds are higher on expensive models, and they frequently have a built-in current-limiter that protects its motor from burning out by reducing power whenever the chainsaw is overloaded
- More expensive units will have an increased number of ergonomic features like rubberized grip handles, a soft start with a large trigger switch, and larger oil reservoirs that have view windows so the operator can check the oil level easily
- Higher quality models will have more metal parts than plastic, will match the item photo advertised online, and are backed by superior customer service
Best Selling & Top Rated Brands
- Sun Joe
How Much Should I Expect To Pay?
The 8 electric chainsaws reviewed here today range in price from around $50 to $250. At the lowest end of our price scale is the Greenworks 20222, which received a rating of 4 out of 5 stars. This extremely low-cost saw features a 9 amp electric motor, a 14” bar, and an auto-oiler, and has garnered a number of positive reviews online. Our highest priced product is the Makita UC4051A, is our editor’s choice for all-around best electric chainsaw. This machine is the Lexus of chainsaws, features all the bells and whistles, and is highly praised by the vast majority of its reviewers.
If you are looking for the best overall chainsaw in the marketplace, check out this page.
Electric Chainsaw Reviews
1) Makita UC4051A 14.5 Amp 16″ Chainsaw
- Has a built-in current limiter to help protect the motor from any burnout caused by a reduction of power to the motor when the saw is overloaded
- Chain speed of 2,900 FPM (Feet Per Minute) for productive trimming and cutting
- Automatic chain oiler allows heavy continuous cutting
- Side oil filler is awkward to fill up completely
- Pin in the chain tensioner cover is unwieldy
The Makita UC4051A has ergonomic rubberized grip handles, tool-less chain and blade adjustment for easy maintenance and convenient operation, and a giant oil reservoir that has a view window which allows the user to check out bar oil level.
I rated this model 5 out of 5 stars and consider it to be the best option for most people.
2) WORX WG304.1 18-Inch 15.0 Amp Chainsaw
- 15 amp motor-output provides extra cutting power to the 18” extender bar
- Has a patented auto-tension chain-system which maintains the right tension and prevents over-tightening
- Comes fully assembled and has a manufacturer’s warranty of 3 years
- Blade and chain come loose a little too often
- Drive sprocket is plastic instead of steel
The WORX 18” WG304.1 is a robust power tool that’s ideal for jobs such as trimming trees, clearing brush, and cutting firewood. This electric saw has a built-in safety chain break, an over-molded ergonomic rubber rear handle, and a full wrap front handle. We rated this chainsaw 4.5 out of 5 stars.
3) Oregon CS1500 Self-Sharpening Chainsaw
- Instant trigger pull start
- Silent between cuts and requires minimal maintenance
- One pull of the PowerSharp lever will sharpen the blade in approximately 3-4 seconds
- Saw must be kept cool and lubricated or failure could result
- Plastic casing can melt
The Oregon 570995 CS1599 has a PowerSharp exclusive self-sharpening system, a high-powered 15-amp motor, and a reduced kickback 18” guide bar and chain. It has a balanced, lightweight, ergonomic design that ensures low vibration, an integrated chain break, and an over-molded comfortable handle. This chainsaw is rated 4.5 out of 5 stars.
4) Remington RM1425 Limb N Trim 14″ Chainsaw
- Wraparound handguard keeps hands safe from debris when doing serious work
- Useful external chain tension adjuster makes saw tensioning easier
- Arrives fully assembled and has a limited 2-year warranty
- Sawdust gathers quickly inside adjustable chain mechanism
- Some users said it leaks oil when not in use
The Remington RM1425 Is equipped with a 14” low kickback and an 8 Amp motor, as well as a push-button oiler. Its lightweight design makes it a simple task to cut through small and medium-sized branches. The motor starts with a trigger squeeze, and users will enjoy the absence of sounds and fumes from this reliable machine. This chainsaw is rated 4 out of 5 stars by us.
5) BLACK+DECKER CS1518 15-Amp 18″ Corded Chainsaw
- Perfect saw for branch trimming, landscaping, and taking down smaller trees if you’re within 100 yards of an electrical outlet
- Good blade, well balanced, lightweight, and an easy start – Simply plug it in, and you’re off!
- No tools are necessary to remove or tighten chain
- Work is limited by the length of the power cord
- Must always watch out that the power cord doesn’t get in your way, especially if you’re on a ladder
The Black & Decker 18” CS1518 has a powerful 15 amp motor that is just right for demanding cuts and larger branches. It provides easy and quick tool-free chain tensioning and has a clear window for monitoring oil levels. This model is rated 4 out of 5 stars.
6) GreenWorks 20222 9-Amp 14-Inch Chainsaw
- Cuts through smaller limbs (3”-5” in diameter) like butter
- Comes with flexible strap handles and a padded nylon storage bag
- Automatic change-oil feature works well with 30-weight motor oil
- Oil reservoir is made out of white plastic and is hard to see into
- Jams sometimes and the chain slips occasionally
The Greenworks 9 Amp 14” is a very inexpensive choice for smaller jobs. It has an easy-start 9 amp electric motor, a 14” bar, a wrap around handle, and tool-less chain tensioning for any necessary quick adjustments. We rated this chainsaw 4 out of 5 stars.
7) HOMELITE UT43122B 16 inch 12 Amp
- Easy to clean, assemble, and disassemble
- Relatively quiet and lightweight
- Provides a good amount of power for its inexpensive cost
- Eats through bar oil
- Too much heat will melt the bar anchor which is unfortunately embedded in plastic
The Homelite 12 Amp 15” UT43122B is an inexpensive, no hassle, dependable chainsaw. It is lightweight (11.3 pounds), has a limited 2-year warranty, has a good amount of power, and can cut limbs and trees up to 28” in diameter. This product is rated 3.5 out of 5 stars.
8) Sun Joe SWJ701E 18 In. 14 Amp
- Weighs just 9.7 lbs. which minimizes user fatigue
- Adjustable ergonomic handle maximizes comfort
- Includes switch to prevent starting accidentally as well as a handguard featuring a kickback break
- Power cord does not lock in place
- Instruction manual has several confusing parts
The Sun Joe 14 Amp SWJ701E is a very reliable, easy to use cutting tool. This chainsaw handles branches, logs, firewood, and limbs easily, and you’ll never have to bother with oil or gas since this machine is powered electrically. We rated this chainsaw 3 out of 5 stars.
After a thorough and comprehensive review of many electric chainsaws available online, our editor’s choice is the Makita UC4051A. This model has the same amount of cutting power usually found only in gas units of the same size. It has a powerful 15 amp motor, high-quality components, and superior overall engineering. It features a built-in current limiter, a 16” guide bar, a chain speed of 2900 FPM, an oil tank capacity of 6.8 ounces, and a net weight of 12.3 pounds. This corded chainsaw is lighter than a gas model, it’s cheaper to operate, it doesn’t emit gas fumes, and it’s very quiet.
All in all, this chainsaw is a top of the line product!