Looking for the best electric chainsaw? Well, you’ve found the right spot. As we enter an age where sustainability and efficiency are key, the electric chainsaw has emerged as a powerful and eco-friendly alternative to traditional gas-powered dinosaurs. Yes, you heard that correctly. Engineers have been working deep into the night on streamlined battery technology for the modern world.
Electric chainsaws have genuinely impressed me over the past year, with more stylish models, improved ergonomics, lighter batteries, faster cutting speed and cheaper prices — and meanwhile they’re quieter and don’t pollute. Let’s me begin by telling you about this new Makita—
Recently released, the Makita 18V XCU11SM1 is my recommendation for the best new electric chainsaw for 2023, especially for homeowners. It’s very comfortable, and noticeable as soon as you pick it up. The soft grip is a nice feature that Makita uses on all of their chainsaws. It makes a big difference when you compare it to some saws with no padding. I found it quite comfortable and easy to maneuver. I also love the compact form factor with a 14″ bar and chain. This is the perfect size for homeowners, and it’s surprisingly lightweight at only 9.3 lbs.
It’s built tough, better than almost every other brand, and it’s priced at around $250 with a 4Ah battery. The engineers at Makita did a phenomenal job at combining a wide array of features that people want, such as: Tool-free chain tensioining, large oil port makes it easy to fill, more resistant to dust and water (XPT), ergonomic design, it’s built for safety with hand guard and fast acting electric brake, excellent torque at 1520 FPM gives it a fast cutting speed, and more. For the money, you won’t find a better electric chainsaw, but I’m sure someone will disagree.
This is the perfect chainsaw because it is versatile enough, with enough power and lightweight enough that it can be used for anything you need to cut around the house; whether it’s pruning, limbing, felling small trees, even cutting logs into firewood, this is capable of multi-tasking, which is why I am confident recommending it. When my friends ask what to buy in 2023, for a casual user, this will be my recommendation.
Table of Contents...
- 0.1 2023 is the Year of the Electric Chainsaw!
- 1 Are Electric Chainsaws any Good?
- 1.1 Best Gas Replacement: Milwaukee 2727-21HD / 16″ (18V)
- 1.2 Best Ultra-Lightweight Electric Chainsaw for Homeowners
- 1.3 Nobody Knows What Chainsaw you Need
- 1.4 Best Value Cordless Chainsaw : WEN 40417
- 1.5 Corded-Electric or Cordless Battery-Powered?
- 1.6 Buy the Right Extension Cord for your Corded-Electric
- 1.7 Best Corded-Electric Chainsaws for $100
- 2 Features to Consider Before Buying an Electric Chainsaw
- 2.1 Do you really need an electric chainsaw?
- 2.2 Toro 60V (51850): Best Rugged Electric Chainsaw
- 2.3 Defining “Electric” Chainsaw
- 3 Best Electric Chainsaws / Battery-Powered
- 3.1 Best 16″ Cheap Corded-Electric Chainsaws / Under $100
- 3.2 WEN 4017 — 14″ or 16″ bar & chain (12A)
- 3.3 Best Electric Chainsaw under $100
- 3.4 👁Most Overlooked Cordless Chainsaw
- 3.5 EGO 18″ 56V : Best Battery-Powered Chainsaw for Experienced Users
- 4 Safety Overview for Electric Chainsaws
- 5 DIAGRAM : Corded-Electric vs Battery-Power
- 6 Corded-Electric
- 7 Battery-Power
- 8 Chainsaw Studies
- 9 Best Electric / Battery Chainsaws: Older Models
- 9.1 Why Buy an Electric Chainsaw?
- 9.2 Best Top Handle Chainsaw for Arborists
- 9.3 Best Homeowner Electric Chainsaw / WORX WG385 Nitro / 16″ / 40V
- 9.4 Editors’ Picks — Oregon CS1500 vs Worx WG322
- 10 Electronic Chainsaw Facts / Classic Models
- 10.1 Recommended Electric : Built-in CHAIN SHARPENER. (review)
- 10.2 5 Best Classic Electric Chainsaws / Original list
- 10.3 Best Electric Chainsaw? Has it Changed in 2023?
- 10.4 Corded-Electric Extension Cord / Which one?
- 10.5 Makita UC4030A / UC4051A
- 10.6 Electric Chainsaw Alternatives
- 10.7 What’s the best electric chainsaw?
- 11 Buy A Top Rated Electric Chainsaw
2023 is the Year of the Electric Chainsaw!
Choosing the best electric chainsaw in 2023 is more difficult now than ever before. The reason is due to the diversity of brands, range of models and the features available. If you don’t have experience with chainsaws I can only imagine the degree of confusion that exists. For starters, when I hear the term “electric chainsaw” I automatically assume the person is referring to a corded-electric chainsaw, but it turns out that people use “electric” to also describe a battery-powered chainsaw — we focus on both types in this guide.
Here is one of my favorite corded-electric chainsaws from Oregon. Who should buy this? Anybody who wants a low maintenance chainsaw. Oregon is the only brand that makes chainsaws with a chain sharpener integrated into the chainsaw — and it works exactly as you’d expect. It’s also costs about $100. One customer wrote:
I was skeptical of the blade sharpening system, but I will never buy another saw without this feature.Verified Amazon Customer, Oregon CS1500
Best Kept Secret for $100: Oregon CS1500 / 18″ (15A)
The reason why this is such a good chainsaw is because it has a built-in chain sharpener. All you do is pull the lever a few times and it’s sharp. This is important because most people don’t know how to sharpen a chain, nor do they want to. A sharp chain is essential to cutting quickly and safely. A dull chain is far more likely to cause kickback, which is how people get injured. A sharp chain will keep you working efficiently. The CS1500 is a corded-electric but Oregon also makes an excellent battery-powered 40V chainsaw that also has the built-in PowerSharp chain — OREGON CS300 / I recommend both of these.
If you’re on a budget get the CS1500. It’s only $100, give or take a few dollars. This is easily the best value electric chainsaw.
Are Electric Chainsaws any Good?
The short answer is “Damn right they are!”
To understand the rise of electric chainsaws, it is important to look at the advancements in battery technology. The R&D investment into battery technology is enormous, and as a result, batteries have become smaller, more efficient, and more powerful. Cordless electric chainsaws are where all the innovation is happening, and they’ve become increasingly popular among homeowners due to their convenience, clean energy, and minimal maintenance.
One of the main advantages of cordless electric chainsaws is their portability. Unlike corded electric chainsaws, which require access to a power source, cordless electric chainsaws run on battery power, making them ideal for working in remote areas. The best high-quality cordless chainsaws today can equal the power of a 45cc gas chainsaw, making them more than sufficient for most homeowners’ needs.
For example, the new Makita 40V XGT chainsaw has enough power to fell large trees. Watch the video below and you’ll understand how certain electric models are capable enough to handle almost anything you need to accomplish around the yard. If you can afford it, get an extra battery or two with a premium cordless electric chainsaw and you’ll have the same cutting capacity as a gas chainsaw.
VIDEO: A New Breed of Cordless Chainsaws / Makita 40V XC01 Series
While electric chainsaws historically were inferior to gas-powered chainsaws, battery-powered chainsaws have made great strides in recent years. In fact, the gap between gas and electric chainsaws is rapidly closing. The latest cordless electric chainsaws have the power and performance to compete with gas-powered chainsaws. The battery-powered chainsaw can last for hours, and the batteries can be recharged quickly, meaning that you won’t have to stop work for too long.
Electric chainsaws also have environmental benefits. They do not produce fumes or smoke, making them safer and more environmentally friendly. There is no need to store gasoline or deal with the emissions that come from gas-powered chainsaws. For homeowners, these factors are crucial, making electric chainsaws the ideal choice.
In terms of the market, the cordless power tool market has been steadily growing. In 2020, the global cordless power tools market was valued at approximately $21 billion, and it is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.3% from 2021 to 2028. This growth is fueled by the increasing demand for cordless power tools across various industries, including construction, woodworking, and DIY.
Tesla’s innovations have paved the way for all industries, including the power tool industry. They have demonstrated that battery power is a viable alternative to fossil fuels, and this has helped to spur investment in battery technology. In the coming years, we can expect to see even more innovation in this field, leading to further advancements in cordless electric chainsaws.
For homeowners, a battery-powered chainsaw is undoubtedly the best type of chainsaw to use. In fact, I’ll go as far as saying that 95% of homeowners should buy a cordless chainsaw, and a very small percentage has a need to fell large trees, and but large volumes of wood, especially hardwood. The newest cordless electric chainsaws are generally excellent, but the premium cordless models from the best brands can compete with 40cc to 50cc Stihl or Husavarna chainsaws.
We’re living at the beginning of a revolution in electric powered tools. The power density of lithium-batteries are powerful, efficient, and environmentally friendly — but they’re still not as powerful as gas-powered chainsaws. Having said that, this is not a competition. A premium battery-powered chainsaw is only a few seconds slower than a 50cc gas chainsaw when cutting through a 16″ log. The difference is negligible.
Electric chainsaws are more than good enough for most homeowner cutting needs, and the advantages they offer far outweigh any disadvantages. With the rapid advancement of battery technology, the future of cordless electric chainsaws is going to surprise everyone, including hardcore loggers.
Details About this Electric Chainsaw Buying Guide
This guide contains both types, but we have more cordless models. You might have noticed that corded-electric chainsaws are slowly dwindling in numbers. The world is moving towards battery powered tools as they’re less destructive to the planet and they’re superior to gas chainsaws for the majority of people.
I bet that you’re looking for a cordless, battery-powered chainsaw. Am I right? The reason I say that is because they’re the most popular type of electric. Corded chainsaws are generally the cheapest type but when you factor in the price of a good extension cord, the price is about the same as a cordless, and you’re left with the annoying task of managing the extension cord while you use it. So why would you buy a corded electric?
Besides price, you never have to worry about running out of battery life with a corded-electric, and they’re lighter in weight because the power source is off-loaded to the electrical outlet. In return you get an extension cord to deal with. That’s the trade off. There’s always something you have to give up to gain. Personally, I would recommend a quality battery-powered chainsaw for 90% of homeowners. In fact, there’s no reason for anybody to buy a gas chainsaw UNLESS they cut high volumes of wood, or they need to fell trees over 18-inches on a regular basis.
There are a lot of factors to consider before buying a chainsaw and my aim is to touch upon every aspect of buying the right electric chainsaw for your specific needs; meanwhile I’ll also be sharing my experience and opinions with you on the specific brand and model that I recommend. There’s a lot packed into this article.
Best Gas Replacement: Milwaukee 2727-21HD / 16″ (18V)
Milwaukee makes Pro-grade tools for professionals. The Milwaukee M18 FUEL is another chainsaw intended to replace a light to medium-duty gas chainsaw. The first thing you’ll notice, after realizing how ergonomic it feels, will be how fast it cuts. It can cut through hardwood faster than a 40cc chainsaw, and it’s only 2 to 3 seconds behind a STIHL 50cc chainsaw, which is phenomenal. It’s available in a variety of packages, with my favorite being the 2727-21HD. This comes with the HIGH OUTPUT HD12.0, a 12Ah high-output battery for the best performance. This gives you 50% more power, and runs about 50% cooler.
If you’re going to spend the money to get this chainsaw, it would make sense to get their most advanced RedLithium battery and benefit from its design. This is for people who need a rugged chainsaw for the jobsite, or for anyone who needs the extra power for felling large trees or turning logs into firewood. This is not the best choice if pruning is your main task. In that case, get the Milwaukee mini-chainsaw engineered specifically for pruning (2527-20 M12 FUEL HATCHET).
Ideal for Pruning and small branches: Milwaukee Mini-Chainsaw
I’ve made sure to include a diverse range of electric chainsaws because from experience I realize that everyone has their own unique circumstances in which they need a chainsaw for. Besides the type of work you plan on doing, there’s also the reality of your budget. We’re living in challenging times, with an economy not looking so great, and job losses happening on a weekly basis. We all don’t have the billions of dollars that Elon Musk has to be able to buy the absolute best electric chainsaw, so bear in mind, that best is relative to your needs and within your budget.
I can’t help but laugh at the silliness when people search for the “best” of something because there’s no such thing — it always depends on your list of variables. I’ve had emails from readers who were upset with me because I didn’t declare one single product to represent the “best” for everybody in the entire world. You won’t get that here, but I promise you that every single chainsaw in this article is excellent in its own right, for a specific use case, and within a certain budget. I never recommend garbage, and I don’t recommend that you waste your money on a no-name brand chainsaw. Please don’t do that.
In 2023, you can buy a name brand chainsaw for about $65. Why do you need to buy a no-name Chinese brand, that won’t be around in 2 years when it malfunctions and you need to get it fixed under warranty? Why not buy a cheap chainsaw from a reputable brand instead?
Best Ultra-Lightweight Electric Chainsaw for Homeowners
CRAFTSMAN 20v / 10″ – 7.9 lbs. (CMCCS610D1)
Nobody Knows What Chainsaw you Need
You’ll find a lot of differing opinions on what the best electric chainsaw is. The reason is because there is no right answer. I know, a lot of people are disappointed but if I knew your exact intended usage, such as, what diameter of wood do you need to cut? And, how much do you want to spend? And, do you mind managing an extension cord or, do you value convenience above price? If I had the answer to all of these questions I easily give you the best electric chainsaw for you, and only you.
Unfortunately, I don’t know you. I don’t know anything about you, so I have to give you a wide range of chainsaws to choose from, in different categories. This is precisely what you’ll find in this article. If you closed your eyes and picked any chainsaws I’ve recommended, I can guarantee you’d get a good quality electric chainsaw — BUT, it might not be the right chainsaw for you, for a variety of reason. Ultimately, you need to match the right chainsaw to your needs, budget and preferences. It’s that simple.
NEW 2023 Model / EGO – Best Gas Replacement Cordless Chainsaw
EGO CS1610 / Faster cutting chain at 20 m/s and more streamlined design. As much power as a 40cc gas saw.
EGO keeps making better battery-power chainsaws. This latest series is known as the CS1610 series. I know, it just rolls off the tongue. The most important improvement on this chainsaw is they increased the chain speed from 13.5 m/s to 20 m/s. This makes a big difference in how fast it slices through wood. Although it’s still not as fast a gas chainsaw, but it’s getting close.
The biggest difference between electric chainsaws and gas chainsaws is that gas saws cut wood about 75% faster when comparing to the premium consumer brands. In other words, all of your cutting will take much longer compared to how long it would take using a gas chainsaw. But I will say that the extra time is far more peaceful because you’re using clean energy and it’s quieter while you work.
You need to weigh all of the factors, and for most homeowners an electric chainsaw is the smartest choice you can make — unless you need to do heavy-duty felling, bucking or firewood cutting.
A Simple Lesson in Making A Decision
If you want a reliable basic chainsaw without fancy features then you might like this WEN 40V (40417). It’s not as good as the Makita UC4051A, but it’s battery-powered, which means this WEN chainsaw is superior when it comes to overall convenience. The Makita costs more and will last longer, on average, than the WEN, but if you value quality over convenience, it is my opinion that you should buy the Makita. I would categorize the WEN 40417 as:
Best Value Cordless Chainsaw : WEN 40417
Corded-Electric or Cordless Battery-Powered?
We cover both in this article, but it didn’t start off that way.
No matter what your budget is, there is an electric chainsaw here for everyone. I understand that you have a budget, especially during these challenging economic times. We don’t always need the best of everything, but within various categories my job is to recommend the best chainsaw for the money. It all comes down to value, no matter how much you decide to spend. I’m confident you’ll find the right chainsaw for your next project — cordless or corded-electric.
In this article we review both corded-electric and cordless battery-powered chainsaws. If you’re a purist, then you only consider a corded-electric to be classified as an “electric” chainsaw. Many people use the term “electric chainsaw” to describe both types. I know, because I did the research, peaking in forums to see what people were saying.
Originally this guide was focused only on corded-electric saws until I realized that people weren’t as strict with the classification as I was. And now we have a blend of the best electric chainsaws in both categories of the market. Are you confused? I sure hope not.
Buy the Right Extension Cord for your Corded-Electric
If you buy a CORDED-ELECTRIC chainsaw, you must buy the correct GAUGE Extension cord. Here are some guidelines:
The wire gauge of an extension cord refers to the thickness of the wire used in the cord, which determines the amount of electrical current that can safely pass through it. The lower the gauge number, the thicker the wire and the more electrical current it can safely handle.
Here is a breakdown of the recommended extension cord for a 12A or 15A electric chainsaw for different lengths:
What is Wire Gauge?
Using the correct gauge extension cord is important to ensure that the chainsaw is receiving the proper amount of power and to prevent the cord from overheating, which can cause a fire hazard.
Wire gauge is a measure of the diameter of the wire used in an extension cord. The lower the gauge number, the thicker the wire and the more electrical current it can safely handle. The American Wire Gauge (AWG) is the standard measurement used to indicate the wire gauge of an extension cord.
VIDEO: An Overview of Wire Gauge and What it Means
The power that an electric tool, such as a chainsaw, requires to operate is measured in amperes (amps) and the extension cord must be able to handle that amount of current without overheating. The wire inside an extension cord has resistance, which means that as current flows through it, some of the energy is lost as heat. The thinner the wire, the more resistance it has, which means that more heat is generated. If the wire is too thin, the heat generated can cause the wire to overheat, potentially leading to a fire hazard.
When the extension cord is too thin (low gauge number) for the power requirements of the tool, the resistance of the wire increases, and this can cause the wire to overheat. As a result, the cord can become damaged and fail, or the heat can cause a fire hazard. Furthermore, the resistance causes a voltage drop, and this can cause the motor of the chainsaw to not receive the voltage it needs and this can cause the motor to overheat and fail.
It’s essential that you use the correct gauge extension cord for the intended distance and amperage rating of the tool to ensure safe and efficient operation.
You should always check the manufacturer’s recommendations for the correct gauge extension cord for their chainsaw, and if in doubt, go with a higher gauge extension cord.
Make sure you choose an outdoor extension cord, AND NOT an indoor cord. Make sure it’s heavy-duty and weatherproof. Double-check the amperage rating on the cord to ensure it is rated for the current draw of the chainsaw.
Best Corded-Electric Chainsaws for $100
How about either of these two well-made, and fairly priced CORDED-ELECTRIC chainsaws. I would consider both of these as light-duty chainsaws, and for the price point, they’re two of the best light-duty corded-electric chainsaw for people on a budget. In other words, these are not in the same category as Makita, Husqvarna or STIHL. There are different levels of quality with corded-electric chainsaws, as there is with gas and cordless as well.
This is what makes choosing “the best” chainsaw so difficult. The answer to this question always depends on what you need to cut. That’s all. If I knew what your intended use is, I could tell you exactly which saw was ideal for you, or I could give you three options for you to choose from. Unfortunately, I have no idea what you need to cut.
These two corded-electric saws from OREGON and Black+Decker are highly recommend within their own class range, they meet all of the minimum requirements for a worthy electric saw, such as being — Inexpensive, reliable, safe to use, made by reputable brands, have enough cutting power, a minimum 2-year warranty, AND, they both cost about $100. For light duty pruning and clearing brush, these are a bargain.
Oregon CS1400 / 16″
Feature Highlights — CS1400
OREGON is an underrated chainsaw brand but anyone who has ever used their chainsaws know how good they are and why their chainsaws are the ultimate homeowner saw
The CS1400 is one of the newest chainsaws and it’s great but their CS1500 is a lot better for one simple reason — it has a built in chain-sharpener, where all you have to do is pull the lever a few times and VOILA! Your chain is sharp.
This one single feature makes the CS1500 the best light-duty electric chainsaw. And strangely enough, it costs the same as the CS1400. I find that hard to comprehend. It’s probably because of the ControlCut chain the CS1400 has. It’s a higher quality chain and will stay sharp longer — but you still have to sharpen it and that’s a tedious task. Do you want to manually sharpen your chain?
I cover the CS1500 later in the article so keep reading to learn more about it.
BLACK+DECKER CS1518 / 18″
Feature Highlights — CS1518
Black+Decker has been in business since 1910. When I was a kid I remember the brand as being the most common brand my dad bought and because of this, I have a soft spot in my heart for the brand.
In 2010 they were bought by Stanley Works so now they’re officially called Stanley Black+Decker. I know, not very creative with the name. This 15A saw (CS1518) is cheap, easy to use, with a chain brake, and all of the basic features you’d expect.
It’s not fancy. There’s nothing special about it. It just works and won’t fall apart like sub-$100 chainsaws. The cheaper the price of a chainsaw, you’ll find they start to feel more like a toy. This one is the beginning of feeling toy-like, but for light-duty cutting, it’s perfect.
Features to Consider Before Buying an Electric Chainsaw
Do you really need an electric chainsaw?
Let me ask you, do you know the largest wood diameter you’ll be cutting? If it happens to be under 4″ then you are the perfect candidate for an electric looper or the WORX JawSaw. You’ll be able to determine quickly if this will be the answer to your prayers.
A Safer Way to Prune and Limb: Black+Decker Alligator Lopper
Best Safer Alternative to Traditional Chainsaws
If you want more details on either of these Loopers just visit the product page on Amazon:
Next, we have an excellent cordless chainsaw from WORX (WG384) It’s also a 10-inch chainsaw. Homeowners love compact chainsaws as light-duty cutting is the primary reason that people buy chainsaws. We also recommend heavy-duty electric chainsaws as powerful as 45cc gas chainsaws.
WORX WG384: A Perfect 40V chainsaw for wood up to 10″ diameter.
The WORX WG384 is one of the best kept secrets when it comes to chainsaws. WORX has engineered one of the best electric chainsaws for homeowners. This 40V battery-powered saw weighs only 10.4 lbs. and the first thing you’ll notice when you unbox it and hold it in your hands is how light it feels.
This chainsaw was designed to be easy to use for extended periods of time, making it suitable for the elderly, women and for anybody who values convenience. It strikes the right chord with its affordable price, overall build quality and the thoughtful features, like the quick-stop chain brake and automatic chain tensioning and lubrication. Put the WG384 at the top of our list in 2023.
Toro 60V (51850): Best Rugged Electric Chainsaw
With the Toro 60V Flex-Force Power System Chainsaw, you’ll be able to take care of whatever needs to get cut. Perfect for storm cleanup, felling trees, logs to firewood, even pruning, but this is too heavy if all you need is pruning. At 12.7 lbs, you’ll get tired quickly if you want to prune non-stop.
Key Features: (TORO 51850)
- Intelligent motor: Our 3-phase brushless motor features RunSmart onboard intel, which optimizes RPM and torque for peak performance, even in the toughest conditions. This means you get more power, longer life, and more runtime from your tool.
- Impressive runtime: With enough runtime for 50 cuts through 6×6 inch branches, you can get more done with less hassle.
- Part of the Toro 60V Flex-Force Power System: Our chainsaw is part of a family of powerful tools, giving you the flexibility to tackle a variety of yardwork with ease.
- Easy start: No need to fuss with cords or chokes – just hit the electric trigger start and go.
- Automatic chain oiler: Keep your chain lubricated and your saw running smoothly with our automatic oiler and view-thru oil tank, featuring best-in-class capacity.
- Pro-style chain tensioning: Keep your chain tight for better cutting performance. And with on-board tool storage, you’re always prepared for adjustments.
- Comfortable and safe: Our chainsaw features a comfort grip handle to reduce vibration and a bar cover for added safety. Plus, optimized weight balance makes it easy to maneuver.
- Battery included: Our 2.5ah, 135wh battery and charger are included, giving you the power you need to get the job done.
- Warranty: We stand behind our product with a 3-year full tool warranty and a 3-year full battery warranty.
The first thing to note about the Toro 51850 is its robust build. Unlike many counterparts, this tool exudes an air of strength and durability. It’s a machine built to last, to endure the toughest of challenges, and this rings true in its handling of various tasks.
Take, for instance, its performance with branches of different sizes. With smaller branches, those within the 6 to 8-inches diameter, the Toro 51850 operates with an ease that is, frankly, impressive. It cuts through them as if they were butter, showcasing the power of its brushless motor.
However, when dealing with larger branches, those that exceed 8 inches in diameter, the chainsaw begins to display a modicum (a hint) of strain. It’s not a catastrophic struggle, but it is noticeable. The machine requires a lighter touch, a little patience, to maintain its cutting rhythm. In comparison to powerhouses such as the EGO or Greenworks, the Toro 51850’s performance might seem somewhat sluggish, but it outperforms many entry-level options available in the market.
In terms of runtime, this is where the intricacies of the chainsaw’s operation become more apparent. The Toro 51850’s performance varies depending on the nature of the task at hand. For instance, while tackling a 28-foot cedar tree, a 2.5Ah battery might give out before the job is done. However, keep at least one extra battery nearby, and you should be able to sail smoothly through the task.
VIDEO: A Closer Look — See it in Action
I recommend purchasing either a 4Ah or 5Ah battery to give you a run-time between 30 min to around 40 min.
But what about the weight? Here, the balance between power and usability comes into play. Sure, a higher-capacity battery will give you a longer runtime, but it also adds to the weight of the chainsaw. The lighter weight of smaller packs, even if they require frequent swapping, might be a more comfortable choice for many users.
The Toro chainsaw, without the battery (includes bar, chain & oil), weighs approximately 10.2 lbs, so the final weight depends on the battery. Here is an overview:
In essence, the Toro 51850 is a well-made, reliable chainsaw, capable of handling a variety of wood cutting tasks around the yard. It’s not the fastest or the most powerful, but it’s a reliable workhorse ideally suited for light-duty cutting tasks. Battery life is good, on average, but your battery life is determined by what you cut. I definitely recommend getting a larger battery such as the 5Ah. The last thing you want is to run out of battery power in the middle of felling a small tree.
The TORO Flex-Force is one of my top recommendations for the best electric chainsaw in 2023. It’s designed for homeowners who need a heavy-duty chainsaw capable of felling small trees, cutting logs into firewood, pruning, etc. It can do it all. It’s on the heavier side at around 12.7 lbs. so if you’re looking for a lightweight electric, this isn’t the right one for you. Overall, it’s a powerful 60V and represents a new breed of cordless chainsaws meant to replace gas models.
Things I Like:
- Powerful, and feels just as powerful as a gas-powered saw. Impressive for a cordless saw
- Great battery life, so you don’t have to worry about constantly recharging
- Fast charging batteries
- Construction is solid and feels like it can withstand serious wear and tear
- Quieter than you’d expect but I didn’t monitor actual dB levels. So much more comfortable to use compared to a gas chainsaw. Your neighbors will love you.
My primary complaint is that this 16″ Toro Flex-Force chainsaw is fairly heavy compared to the competition. This is mainly due to the design of the battery, so what you might want to do is get several smaller batteries to keep the weight from getting out of hand. With the 7Ah battery this Toro weighs as much as a 60cc gas chainsaw. Overall, this is a reliable electric chainsaw but it’s not for the weak or the elderly.
Defining “Electric” Chainsaw
It’s 2023 and even though we’ve all been through a lot over the past couple of years, we’re all striving to get our life back to normal. Most homeowners need a chainsaw but they often struggle to choose the right model. In this article I share with you my top picks for the best electric chainsaws for any budget or scope of cutting projects. Before you can make your decision you need to know what’s the maximum size wood you plan to cut, on average.
What do you intend to use this for? Cutting firewood, limbing, cutting beams, pruning and so on. There’s a chainsaw for everyone and nowadays battery power can rival medium-duty gas chainsaws, like the EGO 56V which is the equivalent of a 40cc chainsaw; which we review later in the article.
Before I get to my recommendations I want to explain something. The term “electric” chainsaw means different things to different people. A true electric chainsaw means it’s a corded-electric and plugs into an outlet. But, I’ve learned over the years that most people also use the word “electric” to describe a cordless battery-powered chainsaw. Don’t worry, I cover both types of “electric” chainsaws in this article. I would never recommend a product I wouldn’t buy myself. I’m here to save you time and money, while educating you so you choose the right electric chainsaw for your needs.
Best Electric Chainsaws / Battery-Powered
Best Pro-Grade / Makita 36V XCU04Z
This is a PRO-grade cordless electric, built to last, with advanced features. If you use your chainsaw a lot, then this is the best buy for you. Built to jobsite standards. This has as much power as a 32cc gas chainsaw.
- Makita-built outer rotor brushless motor
- Professional Grade / 36V
- LED Light built-in
- XPT : Extra dust & water resistance
- 11.1 lbs. (with batteries)
Best Top Handle / Dewalt 12″ – 20V
Homeowners love this small Dewalt electric chainsaw. Take note, this is a top handle chainsaw which is generally best suited for cutting when you are in the trees, above ground. It’s a versatile and compact model worth buying.
- Designed for construction & limbing
- Only 9 lbs.
- Top handle / Ideal for arborists
- Available with 5Ah battery
- Excellent build quality
Note : If you’re only interested in purchasing a battery-powered chainsaw then I recommend you read our dedicated article to cordless models only. Personally, I don’t like to have to manage an extension cord, so my preference is for cordless chainsaws. But, they are more expensive than a corded-electric.
Best 16″ Cheap Corded-Electric Chainsaws / Under $100
If you’re on a tight budget and you need a cheap chainsaw under $100, to do some light-duty pruning and limbing in your yard then here are two options that fit that criteria. I only recommend these chainsaws if you’re on a tight budget. The Oregon CS1400 is far better than the WEN 4017. Basically, the CS1400 chainsaw is similar to the Oregon CS1500, but it doesn’t have the built-in chain sharpening system. To be honest, for a little more than $25 you can buy the superior CS1500, which I recommend. We discuss the CS1500 in the next section, and review it fully later in the article. Customer satisfaction is quite high for these electric chainsaws. Just remember that ratings are relative to the price.
WEN 4017 — 14″ or 16″ bar & chain (12A)
Most popular corded-electric chainsaw under $100 (Not the best)
OVERVIEW — WEN
This little chainsaw punches way above its price class. I’m surprised how WEN can make any money with such an inexpensive chainsaw. It’s a surprisingly a good 16″ corded-electric considering the cost. At the price it’s basically a disposable chainsaw. If it breaks down it wouldn’t be worth fixing unless it’s covered under the warranty. It’s an eye opener to think that we are living in a world where a chainsaw is so cheap, it’s something to throw away. Sadly, this is how I categorize this WEN chainsaw.
This is definitely not in the same class as a Makita or EGO, but it’s the perfect ultra-cheap chainsaw for anyone who just needs to do the occasional pruning and general tree maintenance. This is nothing more than a cheap chainsaw. You won’t fall in love with it. It doesn’t have character. It doesn’t do anything special.
What it does do well is it works when you need it. It can handle branches and logs up to 8″ with ease. It will struggle if you’re cutting green hardwood. The 4017 by WEN is only a 12A so keep your expectations low and you won’t be disappointed.
I only recommend this if you absolutely can’t afford another dime and want something really cheap. Personally, I recommend the OREGON CS1500 as the the cheapest electric chainsaw that doesn’t feel like you’re compromising. It’s only $25 more than this WEN, so if you can afford it, please do yourself a favor and get the Oregon with its self-sharpening chain. You’ll love it. It’s fantastic; much better than this popular WEN.
A Better Buy / Under $100 — Scotts 16″ / 13A (CS34016S)
Best Electric Chainsaw under $100
Feature Highlights / Scotts CS34016S
OVERVIEW / Scotts CS34016S
The Scotts CS34016S is quite good considering it’s less than $100, in fact, I doubt you’ll find better at this price point. As I write that I can’t help but think that for another $10 you can buy the even better Oregon CS1400, which I’ve already let you know. The market is quite crowded with electric chainsaws under $125. It seems that the average homeowner is simply interested in the cheapest chainsaw that will work for their cutting needs.
I completely understand. I know chainsaws intimately so for me it’s impossible not to consider every single aspect of the chainsaw, extending out to the brand and the warranty. I don’t expect the beginner chainsaw buyer to have any awareness of all of the subtle differences between chainsaws. It only comes with experience.
This Scotts 16″ is an excellent choice and under $100, it’s the best corded-electric chainsaw you’ll find. A couple positive indicators that support my statement are that it includes an Oregon bar & chain AND you get a 3 year warranty. A long warranty is sign that the company believes their chainsaw will last, and they should know because the built it.
This chainsaw feels great when cutting and because it’s lightweight at 10.8 lbs. you won’t put too much strain on your body. It’s always healthy to take breaks when you’re using a chainsaw. Don’t work for hours without a few breaks. Stretch in between cuts and wear safety gear at all times.
👁Most Overlooked Cordless Chainsaw
ECHO CCS-58V / 58V – 16″
- Brushless motor = More efficient
- 16 in. bar and chain can easily cut soft and hardwood under 14″
- Automatic oiler for optimum oiling and longer chain life
- Includes: 58-Volt 4.0 Ah lithium-ion battery and 58-Volt lithium-ion charger
- Weighs 14.4 lbs / Heavier than comparable models from other brands
- Fantastic warranty gives you 5 years for your peace of mind and 2 years if you use this for commercial purposes
OVERVIEW / ECHO CCS-58V.
ECHO doesn’t always get the love and attention it deserves. It amazes me because they only sell quality chainsaws — with the CCS-58V being a good example. This is a reliable saw meant to replace your light-duty gas chainsaw. This is on the heavy side at 14.4 lbs. so if you want lightweight then I don’t recommend this model.
This is an older series which has been replaced by their latest ePower 56V series (DCS-5000-18C2). Because it’s older you’ll be able to get it at a good price, if you’re lucky. I like the ergonomics on the CCS-58V. The build quality is solid and the chain is fairly fast, enabling you to quickly cut a lot of logs and branches.
You’ll get a 4Ah 58V battery, which should give you about 35 minutes of run-time, depending on how you use the chainsaw. This 58V battery has been hit or miss with customers as there have been a higher than average number of complaints focused on a defective battery. This is something to be aware of.
If you buy this chainsaw just make sure you charge the battery immediately and then run the chainsaw. Test it out on your branches, trees or spare beams. The purpose of this is to ensure you received a healthy battery, free of defects.This way, if you notice a problem they’ll send you a new one and you won’t have to worry about it.
Every chainsaw has its quirks. It’s important to know as much as you can about the chainsaw you buy to prevent any unpleasant surprises. I still recommend this 58V because the percentage of complaints is small in comparison. The choice is yours.
EGO 18″ 56V : Best Battery-Powered Chainsaw for Experienced Users
EGO has been slowly building the reputation of their brand since 1993. In all honesty, I only heard of EGO when I first started this website in 2014 but over the years I’ve become a fan of their products as they have consistently produced exceptional cordless tools for homeowners and commercial applications. Their tools all run on their advanced 56V Power+ battery system and this 18″ cordless chainsaw form EGO is a stellar example of what battery power can do in 2023.
The CCS1800 is their 18″ model, but it also comes in a 14″ and 16″, giving you a nice range to choose from. I love the LED headlight they’ve integrated into the powerhead, helping you to see your cut better in dim lighting conditions.Overall, this is easy to recommend if you require above-average power for felling trees or cutting thick firewood — up to 16″ in diameter.
Note: The EGO CS1800 is only the chainsaw and the CS1804 includes two long-lasting 5Ah batteries and charger.
VIDEO : A Closer Look at the EGO 18″ 56V Chainsaw (CS1804)
Safety Overview for Electric Chainsaws
When using an electric chainsaw, it’s important to wear the proper safety equipment to minimize the risk of injury. The following is a list of recommended safety equipment:
In addition to wearing the proper safety equipment, it’s also important to follow proper safety procedures when using an electric chainsaw. Here are a few basics:
- Always read the manual and become familiar with the chainsaw before using it.
- Keep a firm grip on the chainsaw with both hands.
- Make sure the chainsaw is in good working condition. Check it for any defects, keep your chain sharp, and make sure your chain is oiled. oiling it.
- Use a steady and controlled motion when cutting and avoid overreaching.
- Keep the chainsaw’s power cord away from the cutting area to avoid tripping or getting caught in the chain.
- When using a battery-powered chainsaw, ensure that the battery is fully charged before using and keep extra batteries on hand.
Compared to gas-powered chainsaws, electric chainsaws are generally considered safer because they have no emissions and are less likely to cause fires. Additionally, electric chainsaws are generally quieter than gas-powered chainsaws. However, electric chainsaws still pose a risk of injury if used improperly.
Don’t Be A Statistic
Chainsaws are dangerous. Even the most experienced people using chainsaws get injured. This fact alone should tell you about the seriousness of the topic. Besides learning how to use a chainsaw correctly, it’s essential that you invest in some safety gear. Even though electric chainsaws are quieter than gas-powered models, they’re still loud enough to require hearing protection. Even though they don’t vibrate as much they still vibrate enough to require anti-vibration gloves. A helmet with a visor is the most basic protection, but absolutely necessary.
If you looked up the type of injuries caused by a chainsaw, I assure you that you’d never use a chainsaw without full safety equipment. I don’t want you to be a statistic. If you don’t have the safety gear already, now is the time to invest in your life and protect it. I genuinely consider it an investment. Your life is priceless.
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) approximately 36,000 people are treated in emergency rooms each year for chainsaw-related injuries in the US. The most common injuries associated with chainsaw use include cuts and lacerations, amputations, and fractures. It’s important to take the proper safety precautions and use the right equipment to minimize the risk of injury.
Here’s a tweet on Oct 12, 2022, from the US Consumer Product Safety Commission on chainsaw statistics for 2021:
In 2021, there were an estimated 21,162 chainsaw-related emergency room injuries in the US. These injuries included, but were not limited to lacerations to hands, legs, fingers, and other body parts, as well as eye injuries from debris.— US Consumer Product Safety Commission (@USCPSC) October 12, 2022
I have to be honest, if you don’t need to use a chainsaw then don’t, or hire a professional if you can afford it. If you know what you’re doing already then just make sure you wear the safety gear and continue to practice safe procedures. If you’re new to chainsaws and you’re trying to figure out what to buy, well, if you only need to cut small branches under 4-inches, I recommend an excellent alternative — the WORX JawSaw or the Black+Decker Lopper. If you need to cut thicker wood then make sure you educate yourself on how to use a chainsaw and continue reading this guide for more options.
Best Value Cordless Chainsaws
Craftsman is thriving in 2023. After the brand was bought by Stanley / Black+Decker, they revamped their full lineup of tools. This Craftsman V20 is an exceptional 12″ chainsaw and costs under $200. On the other hand, the Greenworks PRO 80V chainsaw is one of the best powerful chainsaw. It’s equal to the cutting power of a 45cc gas chainsaw.
Craftsman V20 / 20V / 12″
This V20 Craftsman is one of the top rated electric cordless chainsaws available. It’s perfect for homeowners who require a small chainsaw for light-duty cutting. Ideal for cutting wood under 10-inches.
GreenWorks PRO 80V / 16″
This is one of the best electric cordless chainsaws if you want to replace your gas chainsaw. You get all the power of a 45cc gas model, but in a lightweight, and convenient package. Also available with an 18″ bar and chain.
Craftsman also makes a powerful 60V chainsaw (CMCCS660E1 / V60) if you’re interested in a heavy-duty Craftsman cordless chainsaw. It’s great to see this classic brand creating fantastic products that homeowners can afford.
DIAGRAM : Corded-Electric vs Battery-Power
Limited power at 15 Amps max. You have to manage an extension cord. Inexpensive. Chainsaws are lightweight (no fuel, no battery). Clean power. Won’t stop if using protective clothing. For light-duty cutting.
No cords to deal with. Clean power. More expensive due to cost of battery. Limited battery life (get a 2nd battery). Convenient form of power. Battery power fades over time. New models rival gas.
Best Electric Chainsaws / Corded-Electric Models
Now, let’s look at my recommendations for the best corded-electric chainsaws, landing on both ends of the price scale. The Makita UC4051A costs more than double the price of the Oregon CS1500 but it’s a professional-grade model, which means you pay for the extra quality of the components. It’s true, you get what you pay for.
Makita UC4051A — Best Corded Electric
Oregon CS1500 — Self-Sharpening
Note : No chainsaw is perfect. Chainsaws require some skill, and as the person in charge of the equipment, it’s your responsibility to read the manual thoroughly. Every chainsaw is different, so don’t assume anything about your new chainsaw. Know your saw before you turn it on.
In a 2018 study done in Poland they had some interesting conclusions about the differences between electric chainsaws and gas-powered. The report was called:
“The comparison of vibro-acoustic impact of chainsaws with electric and combustion drives.” (View Original Study)
This study compared the handle vibrations and sound pressure levels of an electric chainsaw with a gas chainsaw. The study found that the measures of handle vibration acceleration (ahwi, ahv) were higher for the electric chainsaw than the gas model, specifically 60% higher for the front handle and 42% higher for the rear handle. The study also found that the rear handle had higher vibration acceleration values for both types of chainsaws. Additionally, the study found that electric chainsaw vibrations were higher in most directions compared to the chainsaw with a combustion engine, with the exception of direction Y for the rear handle. The study suggests that the operator should use individual protective equipment, such as anti-vibration gloves, particularly when using an electric chainsaw.
You are often told that electric chainsaws are quieter, and that is true to some degree, but sound is not as straightforward as it might seem. What the study points out is that the sound frequency is in a range that humans are specifically more sensitive to and because of that, the perceived loudness to humans is more harmful than how it might appear on paper. Sound affects all living creatures differently, and as you know, certain sounds and frequencies are more annoying and uncomfortable than others. Ultimately, you really should be using hearing protection when using your chainsaw, no matter what the type is. They’re all loud.
➤Excellent Head & Hearing Protection: Husqvarna, Forest Technical
In terms of sound pressure levels, the study found that the gas chainsaw had higher values (about 5 dB) during operation. The highest values of sound pressure level were in the octave band with the center frequency of 2 kHz. Taking the A-weighting into account, the study found that the dominant components of noise emitted by the chainsaws correspond to the bands of the highest sensitivity of human hearing, making the noise particularly burdensome for users. The nature of the noise emitted by both types of devices was similar, except for the octave band with the center frequency of 125 Hz, where the sound pressure level was 19.8 dB higher for the chainsaw with a combustion engine. The study suggests that personal protective equipment, such as proper hearing protection, should be used due to the higher A-weighted sound pressure level when using the gas chainsaw.
Best Electric / Battery Chainsaws: Older Models
Next stop on the tour — two more of my top recommendations for battery-powered chainsaws worth spending your money on.
As I stated earlier, many people use the term “electric chainsaw” to mean both cordless and corded-electric. That seems to be the expectation from readers, so I will included battery-powered models as well. Technically both types are being run from an electric power source — one being your 120V wall outlet and the other a lithium-ion battery. You’ll hear more about that later, but for now —
Greenworks — 16″ / 80V
BLACK+DECKER LCS1020 : 10″ / 20V
This is a basic, no-frills chainsaw but quite a workhorse & ultra-compact. Ideal for pruning. For many people, this will do just fine. Also available as a 40V/12″ version (LCS1240 : read review).
► Best in Class Electric Chainsaw — Makita UC4051A (Read full review)
If you don’t mind dealing with an extension corded then you won’t find a better corded-electric chainsaw than this Makita. That’s not hyperbole. This is as good as a true electric chainsaw gets in 2023. Look closely at the image above and notice the internal metal components. This is the difference between an amazing chainsaw and a cheap $100 chainsaw. The internal components determine how long the chainsaw will last. Well, unless you abuse it, but assuming you take care of it, this Makita UC4051A will still be running in five years.
Why Buy an Electric Chainsaw?
In 2023 do you really want to deal with an extension cord? Yes or No?
Choosing the best electric chainsaw is not quite as complicated as buying a gas chainsaw.
Electric chainsaws don’t have the diversity and size variations that you’ll find in a gas chainsaw but they have many other advantages that we’ll discuss later. A corded-electric is limited to 15 amps, which means it has a hard limitation in terms of speed and torque, whereas gas models can have increasingly bigger engines (cc), to drive the chain.
Battery chainsaws are the future as new powerful models rival gas sun as the new 100V Sun Joe, as seen below. It’s not cheap, but a great example of how battery technology is developing, and fast.
Best Top Handle Chainsaw for Arborists
Top handle chainsaws were designed for professional arborists and should only be used above the ground — if you need to do tree maintenance higher than what a pole saw can reach (about 15-feet). Now, if you actually require this type of tree maintenance then I strongly advise that you hire a professional arborist to do the work. Top handle chainsaws are dangerous, especially when people try to use them with one hand. If you’re an arborist and have the necessary training then I recommend this lightweight Makita XCU06.
Electric chainsaw have become the most popular type of chainsaw to buy. More specifically, battery-powered chainsaws are ideal for homeowners. This 36-Volt Makita 10-inch chainsaw (XCU06) by Makita is one of the best electric chainsaws on the market. It has a lot of advanced features that you won’t find on other chainsaws, like a Torque Boost Mode that you can toggle on or off when you need to cut through dense wood. In addition, its built to high standards making it extra resistant to water and dust. This small chainsaw is equivalent in power as a 22cc gas chainsaw but cuts 20% faster. You’ll love how easy it is to use and hold as it’s only 6.6 lbs., making it perfect for women, men, and the elderly. This is a stunning cordless chainsaw from Makita and if you value quality then you should seriously consider it.
It is available is several packages ; You can buy the chainsaw only, without batteries (XCU06Z), or you can buy it with either a 4Ah set of batteries or a 5Ah set of batteries.
VIDEO | Makita XCU06 – Excellent Top Handle Chainsaw
If you need a top handle chainsaw, you won’t regret buying the Makita 10″ (XCU06) — a professional-grade 36V top handle chainsaw. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words but this video will tell you more than my words could ever convey, so give it a look and see if this makes sense for you. Traditionally, a top handle chainsaw is what arborists use because they cut and trim branches above the ground. A top handle chainsaw gives you the optimal flexibility when cutting from above, and are much safer to use under those conditions.
Best Homeowner Electric Chainsaw / WORX WG385 Nitro / 16″ / 40V
Reasons to Buy:
What I think about the WG385 by WORX:
I have only one negative to report on the WG385 and that is it’s heavier than the average cordless chainsaw at 15.3 lbs., which means this chainsaw is not for anyone who can’t safely hold this amount of weight without compromise.
The only other think I need to point out, which is true of all battery tools, is that is the battery could last longer. Truth is that batteries can be expensive if you want a second set. Personally, I advise buying a second set of batteries if you need to cut wood for extended periods of time. Obviously this adds to the overall cost but as far as quality goes, the WG385 by WORX is an exceptional value for homeowners. It’s priced right, requires no maintenance, quieter than gas and easy to maneuver. It cuts wood fast and efficiently.
Many chainsaw owners make the mistake of expecting any chainsaw they buy to fell their 24″ trees but this is an unreasonable expectation. You need to match the tool to the job you need to accomplish. The WG385 is engineered to cut wood under 10-inches without any slowdown. Yes, it can cut thicker logs but this will bog down the chainsaw, slow it down and likely cause overheating. If you need to fell large trees buy a gas chainsaw. It’s that simple. I can find no fault in the design of WG385 and overall customer satisfaction is extremely high. The complaints I read are from people who expected the same power of a 55cc chainsaw and this is not what they needed. I discard negative reviews when the buyer clearly didn’t buy the right tool for the job.
I love this WORX saw and you will too. Highly recommended for your wood cutting needs around the home. Great Buy!
The question is : Are you looking for a corded-electric or a battery powered chainsaws? Now, it’s time to explain this idea in greater detail.
Editors’ Picks — Oregon CS1500 vs Worx WG322
Corded-electric or battery? What’s your preference? Do you mind having to wrestle with an electrical cord. If so, the choice is easy.
Oregon CS1500 : Corded-Electric
Ideal for homeowners who value simplicity & hate maintenance. No need to worry about sharpening your chain. Game changing chainsaw. Very affordable.
Worx WG322 : 20V Battery
This is the perfect light-duty chainsaw for pruning around the yard. Cut branches up to 10″ in diameter. Easy to handle and hold.
Electronic Chainsaw Facts / Classic Models
As a homeowner, you have to ask yourself a few questions before you decide on what you buy. Too often, we get pulled into a list of features that sound impressive, but we may not actually need. For example, you might choose a 40V over a 20V because it has more power, and a bigger bar and chain. In the world we live in, bigger is always better, right? That’s our sub-conscious belief. Bigger is better. More power is better. More features are better. This type of thinking gets us into a loop.
Pause for a moment and ask yourself…
- What do I honestly need to accomplish with this chainsaw?
- What do I intend to cut? How thick is the thickest wood (branch, log, trunk, tree limb…) that I will cut, on average?
- If you’re considering a corded-electric chainsaw, then you have to ask : Do I have the correct extension for this chainsaw? If you buy a 15 Amp electric, then you need a 10 gauge extension cord if it’s 100 feet long. Or a 12 gauge for a 50 foot cord. Either way, if you don’t have one, then it’s an extra cost that you have to factor into the price. (Learn more about extension cords)
- The next question is : Do you mind managing an extension cord when you are cutting? If you’re the type of person who gets annoyed easily, then don’t buy a corded-electric. It will drive you crazy!
- Are you the type of person that wants to sharpen a chain? Some people don’t mind sharpening a chain, but it’s a chore for most people — which is why I consistently recommend Oregon chainsaws, such as the Oregon CS1500 (corded) or CS300 (cordless). Both have built in chain sharpeners.
- Do you want to cut down trees with 20″ trunks? Well, get a gas chainsaw, not an electric.
Some people love to tinker with their tools, while other people just want to use the tools when they need them, without the burden of maintenance or fuss. Which type are you?
Electric Chainsaws : Defined
Gas chainsaws have increasingly bigger engines (cc) for increased speed and cutting force. Electric chainsaws are stuck at 15 amps.
When you searched for “electric chainsaw” what exactly were you looking for?
- Corded electric — Requires an extension cord.
- Battery-Powered — Powered by a battery.
Most people use the term ‘electric’ to mean either of the above, but their is a clear distinction between the two.
► We’ve updated our comprehensive GUIDE on the BEST Chainsaws for the Money in 2023. Check it out. Our latest recommendations. Plenty of new chainsaws. Or, if you want more options for battery power, read : Best Cordless Chainsaws
Recommended Electric : Built-in CHAIN SHARPENER. (review)
Opinion : The Oregon CS1500 should be what you buy if you’re new to chainsaws and don’t want to do any maintenance? Why? The built-in sharpener means you’ll always be able to cut with a sharp chain and that matters. You save a lot of time by not having to sharpen the chain manually. Who wants to do that? I doubt you do. If you’re looking for an electric chainsaw it’s likely because you want convenience and the PowerSharp chain system is a game-changer.
This is an underrated chainsaw that has proven itself to be an ideal chainsaw for the majority of homeowners who appreciate simplicity and value. Yes, it’s very affordable. The engineers at Oregon have managed to make the perfect corded-electric chainsaw. Consider it. You won’t regret. The only downside is that you have to manage an extension cord. If you want more power, a self-sharpening chain and convenience then get the Oregon CS300 — a 40V battery powered chainsaw.
Best Ultra-Cheap Corded-Electric Chainsaw / WEN 4017
- 12A Motor / 16-Inch Oregon Chain
- Includes : Scabbard
- Auto-Oiling System
- Tool-Free Chain Tensioning
- Lightweight 10 lb Design
- Two-Year Warranty
The WEN 4017 (above) is the cheapest electric chainsaw you’ll find, and for the money, it’s quite good. It has garnered quite a following due to its overall value. This has been a top seller for years as it has proven itself to be reliable over time, and has all of the feature customers have come to expect. Namely automatic chain oiling system, a tool-free tensioner, chain brake. Actually, I wouldn’t buy a chainsaw without these features. Although, it does not have a self-sharpening chain. But, I’ll say it again, I don’t recommend buying the cheapest chainsaw, unless you’re on a tight budget and you rarely use a chainsaw.
Only Oregon chainsaws have it built-in. BUT, you can buy the Powersharp system for any chainsaw, but you have to pay for it, adding to the cost. I wouldn’t recommend taking that approach with a cheap chainsaw. What’s the point? But if you have an expensive chainsaw, like the Husqvarna 455 Rancher (read our review), then it’s worth spending the money on.
Read our article on WEN chainsaws if you’re interested in learning more about their series of chainsaws.
Benefits of corded-electric : Cheap (inexpensive), lightweight (no battery, no gas, no engine) and no maintenance.
Disadvantages : Limited power, chainsaw chaps won’t stop a corded-electric as the torque isn’t variable. It’s either on or off. This is important. Materials like Kevlar won’t stop it. Managing an extension cord, which slows you down and you spend a lot of time trying not to get tangles. Inefficient.
If you want to be precise, and I do — an electric chainsaw refers to a ‘corded-electric chainsaw’ — which means you’ll need an extension cord
A battery powered chainsaw, also known as cordless, is by far the most convenient type of chainsaw you can buy, and the type I personally recommend for most people, unless you need speed and power for high-volume wood cutting for primarily thick trees and branches — above 16-inches.
5 Best Classic Electric Chainsaws / Original list
This article was originally written a few years ago, which is why the information in the second half of the article is a little mixed up. We’re slowly updating this article to meet our quality standards., BUT one thing I find interesting is that these five electric chainsaws below were our original picks in 2019 and all but one are still available. Sure, newer models have replaced some of these in popularity, but they’re still good options in 2023.
- WORX WG303.1 / WORX WG304.1
- Makita UC3551A / UC4051A
- Oregon PowerNow CS1500
- Remington RM1425 Limb N’ Trim / Discontinued
- Sun Joe SWJ701E / SWJ698E
If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years is that reputable chainsaw brands design great chainsaws, and if they hold up to customer abuse over the years, these models continue to be sold, and are often updated to keep up with current technology trends.
Before we get into the specific models let’s talk about electric chainsaws in general. They have their unique strengths and weaknesses and it’s good for you understand what they are before making a purchase.
Advantages of an Electric Chainsaw
For the majority of homeowners an electric chainsaw (or battery) is perfect. They provide enough power to handle light-to medium duty cutting projects around the yard. They’re ideal for pruning, trimming, felling small trees and even cutting up logs for firewood. But there are limits to electric power which we’ll get to later.
Every model comes with its own unique strengths and weaknesses. Not all electric chainsaws are well-suited for firewood. It really depends on the overall power and size of the model, which we’ll discuss shortly.
An electric chainsaw is quiet and won’t annoy you when you use it, not to mention that it won’t wake up your neighbors if you decide to get some work done early in the morning. I can’t say the same thing about a gas chainsaw. If you live close to other people and you like to cut at all times of the day then an electric chainsaw will foster peace in your neighborhood.
No Maintenance Required
Cheap, small, lightweight and reliable. Ideal for pruning.
Anybody can use a lightweight electric chainsaw, but the truth is, not everybody should use a chainsaw because of the inherent danger they present to the user.
An electric chainsaw has no fumes or exhaust that you have to inhale as you work. An electric chainsaw requires zero maintenance. A gas chainsaw requires far more upkeep and tinkering than an electric chainsaw. I know some people enjoy playing with their chainsaw and other tools but most homeowners just want to turn it on and get to work.
The more I think about it, the more I realize how practical and convenient an electric chainsaw is. We’re still not done with the advantages. Typically, electric chainsaws are lightweight and easy to carry around. On the other hand, gas engines are much heavier, plus you have fuel in the tank. An electric model is the way to go for seniors or for people who don’t have a lot of strength or experience with chainsaws.
Lastly, electric chainsaws are inexpensive to buy and cheap to operate. They’re extremely affordable so anybody can own one.
From my experience, the majority of homeowners want a small electric chainsaw that they can simply turn on and get to work with.
Disadvantages of Electric Chainsaws
It’s not all good news. There are a few disadvantages with electric chainsaws — not many, but you need to understand the drawbacks as well.
The biggest disadvantage, in my opinion, is that you need an extension cord which means you need to constantly manage and fiddle with the cord as you work. You’ll get used to the cord but it’s something you have to continually deal with.
Also, an extension cord means that you have to be near an electrical outlet at all times. Typically you need to be within 100 feet of an outlet. You’d never go out into the forest to cut firewood with an electric chainsaw. Well, you could if you brought a portable generator, and many people actually do that but a gas chainsaw would be the smarter choice.
A gas chainsaw is the best type of chainsaw for heavy duty cutting for extended periods of time. Battery powered chainsaws are the most convenient and some models, like the GreenWorks 80V chainsaw, are as powerful as a small gas chainsaw. The main drawback of battery power is that batteries have limited energy, although, having multiply batteries can solve that problem, especially when you have a rapid charger which can charge batteries in about 30 minutes.
Greenworks GCS80420 : 80V Chainsaw — Equal to 45c Gas
- 80V brushless motor / 45cc gas equivalent
- 16″- 18″ bar and chain (low kickback) with chain brake for added protection
- Auto-oiler mechanism ensures the chain stays lubricated, and the oil level indicator window allows you to gauge oil usage
- Up To 115 cuts on 4×4 lumber with included 2.5 Ah battery
- Side adjust chain tensioning for quick and easy adjustments
- Metal bucking spikes for added durability and leverage
- Electric start – No gas or fumes, no carburetor, no spark plug, and no starter rope
- 4 Year Limited Tool & Battery Warranty
OVERVIEW: Greenworks 80V
The Greenworks Pro 80V 18″ Brushless Cordless Chainsaw is a game-changer for those looking for a powerful and efficient alternative to traditional gas-powered chainsaws. With an 80V battery, it packs the same punch as a 45cc gas engine without the hassle of gas and fumes — and no maintenance required. This saw isn’t just a one-trick pony, as you can use the 80V battery for all of their 80V tools. It’s always a good idea to stick with a certain brand so you can maximize your purchase and save money on buying new batteries every time you need a new yard tool.
The Greenworks Pro 80V chainsaw has been a success since it first arrived on the market several years ago. It’s proven itself to live up to the hype with it’s18″ bar and chain and steel bucking spikes which give the user more control when cutting through thicker logs. You get all the standard safety features, such as an electronic chain brake. It has an auto-oiler to ensure your chain stays lubricated. The electric start is one of the standard benefits when buying an electric chainsaw. No recoil start here.
VIDEO: A Closer Look at Cutting Efficiency and Battery Life / Greenworks 80V
Customers have been extremely satisfied with their purchase, mainly due to the fact that it’s powerful, reliable and eliminates the need for gas, fumes, and maintenance. The saw is well-balanced, and although it’s heavier than most battery chainsaws, it still feels comfortable when you’re cutting with it. You’ll notice how well-made this is when you pick it up. It does not feel like a toy as many cheaper electric chainsaws do.
It has a tendency to leak oil, which is annoying but not unusual for cordless chainsaws.
It’s quieter than gas-powered chainsaws, but it is still loud enough to require wearing good ear protection. One of the complaints is that the 2A battery lasts only 20 to 30 minutes each, so you should buy a higher Amperage battery to give you more running time. Some customers buy 3 or 4 batteries. This will be determined by how much wood you typically cut in one go.
The Greenworks Pro 80V comes with a generous 4-year tool limited warranty and 4-year battery warranty, providing customers with peace of mind and a sense of security. This is a very good warranty compared to other brands. It’s a sign they stand behind the quality of their product.
Overall, an excellent buy. and efficient alternative to traditional gas-powered chainsaws. This chainsaw is a great option for homeowners who are looking to replace their light-duty gas-powered chainsaws with an eco-friendly and convenient option.
We still have a few more disadvantages to discuss.
An electric chainsaw is limited in power because a home electrical socket can only accommodate 15-Amps. This is a significant barrier and limitation for homeowners who need a fast chainsaw capable of cutting large trees. This is the reason why most electric chainsaws are best suited for light-duty cutting. Although, there are some highly-efficient electric chainsaws capable of matching a small gas chainsaw in terms of raw cutting power, like the exceptional Makita UC4051A (read our in-depth review).
Overall, Makita electric chainsaws are the best electric models as they are perfectly tuned for efficiency, and they are powered by Makita’s own proprietary motors which are optimized at turning 15-Amps into the highest amount of cutting power.
As you can see, an electric chainsaw has a few limitations but every power source has disadvantages. Gas chainsaws require high maintenance, they emit stinking fumes, they’re loud, heavy and expensive. Even battery chainsaws have disadvantages. The main drawback is that battery life is limited and backup batteries are expensive. Also, battery power is limited as well but the GreenWorks 80V chainsaw has the equivalent power of a 45cc gas chainsaw.
Technology will continue to evolve and in the end we benefit from the quest for the ultimate chainsaw.
Best Electric Chainsaw? Has it Changed in 2023?
Well, it depends on what you need — and your budget.
All the chainsaws on my list are quality made saws that can all fit he definition of “best electric chainsaw”, but as you would expect, the more expensive saws are more durable, have more features, and can tackle tougher jobs. Originally this article was focused on only corded-electric chainsaws but in 2023 we added battery-powered chainsaws as well because most people use the term “electric” to describe both types. It was my original mistake when writing this guide to just focus on corded models. This notion is true in life with most of the words we use. For example, the word “love” has a different meaning to everybody, and yet we use the word assuming we’re talking about the same thing. Yes, I know you’re not here to talk about love. I recently created a personal site to talk about topics related to everyday struggles and challenges we all deal with. If you’re interested in such topics visit my personal site called Pivot or Die. It’s a self-help style site.
Ok, let’s get back on topic. Sorry for my digression.
You get what you pay for when it comes to chainsaws but if you want a high-quality electric chainsaw you’ll have to spend more money but the prices are still very reasonable. A cheap electric chainsaw will lack the efficiency and capabilities that a powerful electric model will provide, like Makita chainsaws, and more importantly, they won’t have the built in safety features, like an inertia chain brake. Some do, cheap models don’t.
All of the electric chainsaws reviewed in this article are all good chainsaws in their own way.
Electric saws are perfect for homeowners who only need a chainsaw for small projects. So, continue on and read through the electric chainsaw reviews to find out more.
If you’re not sure what chainsaw type is best for you I’d recommend reading our chainsaw buying guide.
Do you Know the Timeline of Chainsaw Technological Developments?
The invention of the mechanical chainsaw can be traced back to the 1920s, with several notable figures contributing to its development. Wolf from the United States, Westfelt from Sweden, and Stihl from Germany all played significant roles in the creation of the chainsaw as we know it today. Stihl, in particular, is a name everybody knows, It’s a synonymous with chainsaws and notable for being the largest and oldest chainsaw manufacturer in the world, having been founded in 1926 with an annual turnover of 1.6 billion euros in 2004.
The initial goal of the chainsaw’s invention was to make heavy forestry work easier and more efficient, with the aim of increasing productivity and profits. The development of the chainsaw went through several stages and breakthroughs, with Stihl creating the first electro-chainsaw in 1926, Dolmar created the first petrol chainsaw in 1927, and the first one-man chainsaw was made in 1950. Subsequent developments included an anti-vibration system in 1964, a chain brake in 1972, a quick-stop feature in 1982, a catalyzer in 1989, and an automatic start in 1991.
Despite the obvious benefits that the chainsaw brought to the logging industry, it took several decades for it to gain widespread acceptance. The early chainsaws were heavy and cumbersome to use. They required a significant amount of energy to operate, making them a less than ideal choice for many loggers. The first two-man chainsaws weighed over 60 kilograms, but as technology progressed, the chainsaws grew lighter and more powerful, eventually leading to the development of the one-man chainsaw in 1950.
The introduction of the chainsaw brought significant changes to the logging industry, making it more efficient and productive. However, it also faced its share of critics, with some people arguing that traditional methods such as the hand saw and axe were still superior. The increased efficiency of the chainsaw led to concerns about sinking piecework rates and the loss of jobs for manual laborers.
Despite these challenges, the chainsaw has become an iconic tool in the United States, with many people collecting and restoring vintage chainsaws, similar to how muscle cars are collected and restored. Today, while electric chainsaws are becoming more popular, they do not hold the same appeal as vintage gas chainsaws.
VIDEO: Fascinating Documentary on Logging Giant Redwood’s in 1946
Corded-Electric Extension Cord / Which one?
Buying the right extension cord is absolutely essential if you want to get the maximum power from your electric chainsaw. Not all extension cords are created equal. In fact, you have to match the extension cord according to the amperage (amp) rating of your chainsaw.
If you use the wrong extension cord you could burn out your motor prematurely due to high heat. Have you ever had a hot extension cord? Well, it probably means it was the wrong rating for your tool — or you had it rolled up in a tangled mess, which also causes extra resistance and therefore high heat.
Here are my recommendations for extension cords according to the amps of your electric chainsaw:
For powerful electric chainsaws (12 – 15 Amps), use these cords:
- Flame resistant. Heavy duty outdoor jacket that is water resistant for added protection against moisture.
- 5/8″ strain reliefs in back of plug and connectors prevent ends from pulling away from cord body.
- Both plugs have a built in amber neon light which indicates there is power in the cord and outlet.
And for less powerful electric chainsaws (7 – 12 Amps), use these cords:
- HIGHLY VISIBLE yellow jacket provides extra safety and will not mark floors or walls
- WATER RESISTANT: Flexible vinyl jacket provides protection of the cord against moisture, abrasion, and sunlight
- REINFORCED BLADES add durability that protects prongs from bending and/or breaking
- LIGHTED END indicates power is on
Now, let’s get to our list of the best electric chainsaws currently on the market. As you know, chainsaw models come and go. We do our best to keep all the information up to date. Thankfully, the best chainsaws stay on the market year after year, with minimal improvements.
WORX WG303.1 | Electric Chainsaw
16-inch / 15 Amp / Electric
The 303.1 chainsaw is still a great buy for an electric, but they now have a newer 14″ (305.1) 8 AMP version, which has less power than the Worx 303.1, which is a 15 Amp model. There’s a big market for inexpensive chainsaws. Let’s be honest, life has been challenging for most people since the pandemic began so it makes sense that consumers want the cheapest products they can find.
- Tool-free tensioner.
- Built-in chain brake for added safety.
- Automatic oil lubrication and built-in oil reservoir with level indicator.
- Over-molded rubberized rear handle and ergonomic full-wrap front handle.
- 3/8″ pitch reduced kickback chain safely improves cutting performance.
- Includes Scabbard And 4 oz. bottle of chain oil.
This is the highest rated and most popular electric chainsaw available. Extremely popular with homeowners because it’s an exceptional value. For under $100 you get a well-made chainsaw that’s dependable, affordable and easy to use. For most homeowners, this is the ideal electric chainsaw — and it should be. WORX has done an excellent job at designing a well-balanced chainsaw.
WORX is a division of Positec, a China-based manufacturer of power tools, lawn and garden equipment and accessories. The WORX brand was introduced in 2004 and has steadily been increasing its market share, competing against name brands like Black & Decker.
Positec has a strong commitment to innovation as it spends 6% of its revenue on research and development. In comparison, the figure for industry leader Black & Decker is less than 2%.
Automatic tension system incorporates an easy to handle oversized knob that secures the bar and chain, and maintains proper tension during operation. Everything is automated so your chain is always properly adjusted.
The WORX WG303.1 has a built-in safety chain brake. If you encounter kickback the chain will stop immediately, preventing serious injury. This is an essential safety feature that all chainsaws should have.
Comfortable to hold for extended periods of time with its rubber over-molded rear handle and ergonomic full-wrap front handle.
It comes with all-metal spikes at the base of the 18-inch long bar to create stability during cutting, and an easy-to-lubricate sprocket on the bar nose helps preserve the life of the tool. This is saw has enough power for all your light to medium duty jobs and it’s a well-built chainsaw that’s worth every penny.
View or download the MANUAL for the WORX WG303.1. It’s designed for everyone. inexpensive and practical with a great selection of features.
- Peak Power: 3.5 Hp
- Bar Length: 16″
- Chain Pitch: 3/8″
- Chain Gauge: 0.50″
- Oil Tank: 6.75 oz
- Dry Weight: 11.0 lbs
Makita UC3530A / UC3551A — Best Corded-Electric Chainsaw
14-inch / 14.5 amp / Corded-Electric
- New adjustment lever for easier tool-less tension adjustment of your chain.
- Longitudinal motor provides improved maneuverability.
- Superior oil pump design keeps the delivery of chain oil constant, regardless of temperature and oil viscosity.
- One-touch tool-less blade and chain adjustments for convenient operation and easy maintenance.
- Rubberized grip handles and large trigger switch are ergonomically designed for comfort.
- Large trigger switch with soft start for smooth start-ups.
- Built-in current limiter helps protect motor from burnout by reducing power to motor when saw is overloaded.
- Large oil reservoir with view window allows operator to check bar oil level.
- Automatic chain oiler for heavy continuous cutting.
- Electric chain brake for maximum productivity.
- Double insulated for operator protection.
- Large metal spikes creates a stable pivot on wood for steady cutting.
- Powerful 14.5 AMP Motor for High Performance.
- Protective scabbard for bar and chain.
Makita is a Japanese company with a long history – at nearly 100 years old – it began in 1915. Makita develops and manufactures professional and consumer power tools with a focus on power, reliability, and efficiency. They create a wide-range of tools including: flashlights, grinders, hedge trimmers, power cutters and of course, chainsaws. Plus a whole lot more.
What’s new with the Makita UC3551A chainsaw? Well, this is straight from Makita:
UC3551A series are the successors of UC3530A series longitudinal body style electric chain saws. The oil pump and tool-less saw chain adjuster have been improved and the exterior design has been changed as new born models.
The Makita UC3530A / UC3551A is the type of electric chainsaw you buy if you’re thinking more long-term as a buyer. Why? Well, because it costs over $200 – more expensive than any of the other previous chainsaws reviewed here but it’s a quality tool. This is an extremely well built saw and it doesn’t feel flimsy in your hands. Hands-down one of the best electric chainsaws you can buy.
This saw uses metal gears which you might think they all do, don’t they? Well, no. The cheaper chainsaws typically use plastic gears, which obviously won’t be as durable. As in most things in life, you get what you pay for and the Makita UC3530A is no different. Sure, some people may think it’s expensive but it will last for many years and will effortlessly tackle those duties around the home.
It feels great in your hands, easy to adjust the chain and comes with the always useful chain brake for preventing kickback injuries. Easy to start and has a system that prevents motor burnout if the saw is overloaded – another great feature worth paying for. Sometimes beginner operators will push their chainsaws too hard and cause damage without even realizing it. Well, this system will prevent you from going too hard on the motor and ruining your saw.
I also want to add that although Makita has this chainsaw rated at 15 Amps (as well as the Makita UC4030A/UC4051A) the label on the saw has it rated it at 14.5 Amps).
Buy some bar and chain oil with the Makita UC3530A/UC3551A because it does not come with any. All chainsaws use a lubricant for their bar and chain.
Oregon PowerNow CS1500 / Best Electric Chainsaw
18″ bar & chain / 15 Amp / 12.6 lbs / Electric
- Built-in PowerSharp chain sharpening system.
- Light-weight, balanced ergonomic design.
- 15 amp power.
- Instant start every time.
- Over-mold handle for added comfort.
- Automatic oiler with translucent viewing window.
- Quiet. Silent between cuts.
- Tool-free chain tensioner.
- 18″ reduced kickback bar and chain.
- Weight : 12.6 lb (5.7 kg) with guide bar and saw chain attached
- Integrated chain brake for safety.
✓Tip: Make sure you tighten the bar and chain properly. Read the manual to find out how.
The OREGON PowerNow CS1500 is relatively unknown and I’m struggling to figure why. Maybe it’s not marketed as much as other chainsaws or consumers aren’t familiar with the Oregon brand. I honestly don’t know why but the truth is that this is an excellent electric chainsaw that’s engineered to last.
At 15 Amps it’s as powerful as an electric chainsaw gets. Capable of cutting through wood up to 16″ in diameter, and more if you have the patience to go slow. It has an 18″ bar and chain, which is a good length for most homeowners; but there’s one standout feature that you won’t find on any other chainsaw —
This electric chainsaw has a built-in sharpening system so you never have to worry about sharpening your chain ever again. All you do is pull the sharpening lever for 2 to 3 seconds and voila! A sharp chain is important when it comes to getting the most from your chainsaw, especially an electric where power is limited.
This may not be as popular as the WEN 4017 model but in many ways it’s better for homeowners. You can’t overlook the importance and convenience of having a built-in sharpener. And it’s very affordable.
On top of all of that it has an instant start — just pull the trigger. Also, because it’s an electric there’s minimal maintenance, low noise and it’s silent between cuts.
Technical Specs :
- Power : 15 amp / 120v
- Bar Length : 18″ (45cm)
- Chain : PowerSharp
- Pitch : 3/8″ Low Profile
- Gauge : .050″
- No Load Chain Speed : 2887 fpm / 48 fps
- Chain Tensioning : Tool-less system
- Oil System : Automatic oiler
Makita UC4030A / UC4051A
Best electric chainsaw. Period! 16-inch / 14.5 amp / Electric
NOTE: The Makita UC4030A has been discontinued, but thankfully, they’ve updated it and improved upon an already fantastic electric chainsaw. It’s now called the Makita UC4051A See the changes they’ve made below.
- New adjustment lever for easier tool-less tension adjustment of your chain.
- Longitudinal motor provides improved maneuverability.
- Superior oil pump design keeps the delivery of chain oil constant, regardless of temperature and oil viscosity.
- Rubberized grip handles and large trigger switch are ergonomically designed for comfort.
- Large trigger switch with soft start for smooth start-ups.
- Built-in current limiter helps protect motor from burnout by reducing power to motor when saw is overloaded.
- Large oil reservoir with view window allows operator to check bar oil level.
- Automatic chain oiler for heavy continuous cutting.
- Electric chain brake for maximum productivity.
- Double insulated for operator protection.
- Large metal spike creates a stable pivot on wood for steady cutting.
- Powerful 14.5 AMP Motor for High Performance.
- Protective scabbard for bar and chain.
I have to admit, I absolutely love this Makita UC4030/UC4051A. It’s a professional grade electric chainsaw that is extremely well-made like all other Makita tools. Since writing this article on Electric Chainsaws I’ve written an in-depth look at Makita UC4030A/UC4051A and the Makita UC3530A/UC3551A. I recommend reading it since it’s more current and quite thorough.
The Makita UC4030A is exactly the same as the Makita UC3530A / UC3551A except it has a 16″ bar and chain.
Makita is an exceptional manufacturer of a wide range of power equipment and tools. Their chainsaws are just one product in a long line of tools that include: drills, blowers, string trimmers, hedge trimmers and much more. Makita is a name you can trust with your money as they’ve been around since 1915. No company stays around that long without making good products.
It’s a little pricey but it will last you for many years to come.
The Makita UC4030A / UC5051A is definitely one of the pricier electric chainsaws you can buy at around $250 but also one of the best electric chainsaws you can buy. It’s very well-constructed, durable and will last you for many years to come, as long as you take care of it.
This is the type of chainsaw for people who value well-engineered tools. It’s perfect for cutting firewood, felling small to medium trees, pruning and limbing. I’m confident that this saw will tackle all your home needs and more. Unless you have large trees to fell or plan on cutting a lot of hardwoods than this is the ideal electric chainsaw — as long as you’re willing to spend the money and view this purchase as an investment. This is a different class than the other chainsaws in this article. Once you start using it you’ll understand why.
One good example of the difference between an inexpensive electric chainsaw and a higher quality chainsaw, like either of the Makita saws on my list, is that Makita’s have metal gears that drive the chain, whereas the inexpensive saws have plastic gears. That’s why you’re paying more. In general, the parts are of a higher quality. Just something I want you to keep in mind when making your decision.
This saw has a chain brake, automatic oiler, tool-less chain adjustment and it feels great when you hold it as it’s ergonomic and feels solid. Fast and easy to start, as you would expect from an electric, and also easy on the ears.
Don’t forget to buy bar and chain oil with the Makita UC4030A because it does not come with any.
Electric Chainsaw Alternatives
Some people don’t like chainsaws and I understand why. They can be dangerous if used incorrectly. Thankfully, there are options for homeowners who want an easier way to trim and cut wood around the house.
These options are absolutely perfect for wood under 4-inches in diameter. So, for light-duty trimming and pruning around the yard I highly recommend either one of these chainsaw alternatives.
WORX JawSaw WG307 | Electric Chainsaw
- Patented auto-tension system sets the proper tension for you.
- Steel teeth hold work in place while cutting for greater stability.
- Blade housing allows for safe & easy cutting directly on the ground.
- Automatic chain oiler with oil level indicator helps extend the life of your bar & chain.
If you want to learn more about the JawSaw then I recommend reading our full in-depth review on all the JawSaw models. But for now, watch this video. It will show you everything you need to know about it.
Learn more about WORX and their line of chainsaws in our feature article.
Documents for the WORX JawSaw WG307:
- View or download the MANUAL
- View or download the QUICK START GUIDE
Alligator Lopper | Black & Decker LP1000
- Innovative clamping jaws grab and cut in one easy motion.
- Scissor action makes cutting branches effortless.
- 4.5 amp motor for powerful, fast cutting.
- Designed for your safety. Easy to use.
- Heavy-duty cutting bar and chain quickly cut thick branches and logs.
- 4″ cutting capacity cuts limbs too big for manual loppers.
This is another excellent chainsaw alternative. If you know how to use scissors you an use this. Just plug it in and start cutting. No maintenance. No fumes. It’s quiet. I recommend the WORX JawSaw over the Alligator Lopper because it’s more refined and has better features — but the choice is yours.
For cutting under 4-inches, you can’t go wrong with either of these safe power saws.
Read our in-depth review of the Black & Decker Alligator Lopper (all models). They also make a battery powered version, which is handy because you don’t have to wrestle the cord when you cut.
View or download the MANUAL for the Alligator Lopper LP1000.
What’s the best electric chainsaw?
There is no single best electric chainsaw for everybody. Your needs are different from your neighbors or an arborist or a landscaper. The key to choosing the best electric chainsaw for you is understanding your own particular needs. Perhaps an electric chainsaw isn’t powerful enough for your needs. If that’s the case then you should purchase a gas chainsaw as they are the most powerful chainsaw type you can buy. If you attempt to push an electric chainsaw beyond their capabilities it won’t last very long and besides that, you’ll be frustrated because you won’t be very productive with it.
We tried to give you a lot of options for both corded-electric and cordless chainsaws. Every year new chainsaws come out, but only a handful of them are worth buying. What I find interesting is that almost all of the chainsaws we recommended several years ago are still great buys today. When you buy a chainsaw that’s been around for more than a year, you have a long history of customer feedback, so you know it’s going to be reliable based on the reviews. With a new electric chainsaw it’s impossible to know if it will stand up over time. We rely heavily on the reviews of actual customers before we recommend any chainsaw or any other products on this site.
If you’re looking for more power than have a look at our Gas Chainsaw Buying Guide. If you want portability and freedom then read our Battery Powered Chainsaw Guide. Personally, I like knowing my options before I commit to spending my money. Buy smart.
It’s true, chainsaws come in a wide range of sizes, power types and price points. It can be challenging knowing which model is best for you unless you have a clear view of your options. You may think you need an electric chainsaw when what you really need is a battery powered chainsaw. We think it’s beneficial to educate yourself as much as possible to help you choose the best chainsaw for your needs and budget.
Don’t forget to buy the appropriate extension cord if you decide to purchase a corded-electric chainsaw and factor that into the overall price, when comparing to buying a cordless chainsaw. You need to choose the correct gauge extension cord based on the amps of the chainsaw. If you choose the wrong one it may shorten the lifespan of your chainsaw due to excessive heat. You don’t want that.
Buy A Top Rated Electric Chainsaw
This has been a long buying guide and it continues to evolve and I update it regularly. Electric chainsaws are ideal for homeowners who value convenience and finally, technology has finally enabled manufacturers to make professional-grade electric chainsaws that professionals actually love. I’ve presented you with many of the absolute best top rated electric chainsaws to give you a frame of reference as to what’s available to you. I know it can be overwhelming but I think it’s wise to stick with reputable brands with a history of reliability over the long-term.
Stay away from cheap no-name brand electric chainsaws. There are a lot of these no-name Chinese chainsaw brands but they’re nothing more than private label chainsaws sold by a company that won’t be around in 3 years. Good luck finding parts when you need a repair. The money you think you save in the short term will cost you more in long run. If you do decide to go this route, buy the extended warranty on Amazon. It’s cheap and it means you’ll have support even if the company disappears — but I don’t recommend this route.
If you were to ask me what my idea is of the best electric chainsaw, I will tell you that my personal favorites are:
- Anything Makita but I love the new 40V XGT series (Makita GCU06T1)
- Latest EGO Power+ CS1613
- Most Underrated: CAT 60V 16” DG630
With a wide array of powerful and highly rated cordless electric chainsaws now on the market, they have become a preferred choice for specific use cases. The advantages are numerous, including, they’re lightweight, require minimal maintenance, are quieter than gas, and they don’t pollute, which means people no longer have to inhale toxic fumes when using a chainsaw. One day humans will wonder why they were so dumb using gasoline power tools.
The market offers various options to suit the needs of the user, from pruning small limbs to felling large trees. Standard corded-electric chainsaws are ideal for light to medium-duty work, while cordless options offer the flexibility to move around without the limitation of cords. For those who require more power, a high-quality cordless electric chainsaw can match the power of a 45cc gas chainsaw.
While corded-electric chainsaws have been available for a long time, I personally recommend investing in a battery-powered chainsaw due to its flexibility and portability. Investing in a Pro-grade and more expensive chainsaw, such as a Makita chainsaw, can be a prudent safety measure since these chainsaws come with more modern safety features, making them a safer option.
As you continue to shop for the best electric chainsaw in 2023, make sure you evaluate the safety features and take adequate safety precautions such as wearing protective gear. Make sure you learn how to use an electric chainsaw properly to reduce your risk of injury. It’s a dangerous tool, so don’t be fooled by the ease of use that an electric chainsaw offers you. One dumb mistake can send you to the hospital where many thousand end up every year. Wear safety gear at all times. I can’t stress this enough.
Electric chainsaws are a viable and practical option in 2023. The right electric chainsaw for you depends on your individual needs, such as the type of work you plan to do, the size of trees you’ll be cutting, and your budget. By using this guide, you can find the perfect reliable electric chainsaw that suits your needs and enables you to do the work you need to do.