Planned to buy a chainsaw? But not sure if you want to go powered by electric or gas? If so, then I understand that fully. An electric chainsaw has decent performance, but does it satisfy your needs, or do you need the power of a gas chain saw?
I’ve put together this in-depth electric vs gas chain saw guide to help you make the right choice.
Below you can find a description, benefits, and drawbacks of electric and gas chain saws and an easy-to-read comparison chart.
The purpose here is to help you get a better sense of which form is best for you.
How Does an Electric Chainsaw Work?
Electric chainsaws come in two types: corded and cordless; and all models drive the chain the same way.
The biggest difference between the two is how they operate the chainsaw.
Corded chainsaws require power outlets when cordless chainsaws are running on batteries.
As for how electric chainsaws work, here’s what you need to know:
- Electrical chainsaws are driven by electric motors.
- Electrical motors don’t have moving parts like a gas engine. An internal power-producing device called “armature” transforms electric power in the form of torque into mechanical power.
- Torque is transmitted within the chainsaw into a shaft which causes the chain to spin around the guide bar.
See also: How to use Electric Chainsaw
Advantages of Electric Chainsaws
There are many advantages to electric chain saws including:
Lighter: In comparison to gas chainsaws utilizing an engine, electric chain saws are driven by an electric motor. This feature makes electric chainsaws much lightweight than gas-chainsaws. With an electric chainsaw, the total weight is 10 lbs.
Smaller: Since electric chainsaws have less motor parts, these machines have a more lightweight aspect. Even you can buy one with a smaller blade size than a gas chainsaw, like 6 or 8 inches.
Easier to Use: Electric chain saws are extremely easy to use for prolonged periods of time, with a smaller size and lighter weight. Also, they allow you to reach tough spots when cutting trees.
Constant Power: Electric chainsaws can operate forever as long as they are plugged into an electricity supply. There is no stopping to refuel like in a gas chainsaw.
Less Maintenance: Electric chainsaws are easy to operate since they are not operating on fuel. Carburetor motors must be well maintained, like those in gas chainsaws, otherwise, they can break down.
Less Noise: Electric chainsaws are also quieter, without a loud motor to drive the chain. Moreover, these tools only make a sound when pulling the trigger. When idle they are silent.
Cordless Options Exist: There are two types of electric chainsaw they are: corded and cordless. You can buy a battery-powered chainsaw which gives you a lot more flexibility to use the tool for.
See also: Best Chainsaws to Buy in 2020
Disadvantages of Electric Chainsaws
The most common drawbacks of electric chainsaws here are:
Less Powerful: Electric chainsaws provide less power than petrol chain-saws. Therefore, cutting into a piece of wood (or tree) by using an electric chainsaw can take you longer. Electric chainsaws do not require fuel so they can run without attempting to stop forever.
Limited by Cord Length: You can only use an electrical chainsaw that far from the power source. If you choose to cut wood that is far away, you’ll have to make sure the extension cord you’re using is large enough.
Requires a Power Source: You can not operate an electric chainsaw if the power source either breaks or goes out. For situations, if you are utilizing an electric chainsaw for storm cleaning and there is no active power source to plug for, that may be a problem.
How Does a Gas Chainsaw Work?
Gas chainsaws come in two various kinds: 2 cycles and 4 cycles.
The only difference you need to know between the two for the purposes of this guide is that 2-cycle chain saws need you to blend oil with fuel and pump it into a single tank to fuel the engine. This combination of fuel is what correctly lubricates parts for the engine.
A 4-cycle chainsaw does not require an oil/gas mix, since it has two different oil and gasoline tanks.
As for how gas chainsaws work, here’s what you need to know:
- Fuel moves to be mixed with air through a carburetor.
- The combination of air/gasoline passes into a cylinder.
- The air/fuel mixture is ignited within the cylinder with a spark plug.
- As the air/fuel mixture burns, energy is released and pushes a piston back and forth.
- A connecting rod and crank convert the piston’s motion to rotary motion.
- A drive shaft is carrying the strength to the centrifugal clutch.
- The centrifugal clutch attaches the engine to the chain by means of sprockets, which allow it to rotate around the bar.
See also: Best Gas Powered Chainsaws
Advantages of Gas Chainsaw
- They are ideally suited to heavy-duty work and handle any job that you do to them: pruning, trimming, cutting very large trees, slicing firewood, etc.
- They have blade lengths that are as long as 72 inches.
- They cut quicker than electric or battery chainsaws which are corded.
- They are incredibly mobile and can be used anywhere they could be.
- They’re, like a corded electric chainsaw, is not tied in the distance.
- If you’ve got enough fuel they can run all day long.
Disadvantages of Gas Chainsaw
- They are much heavier than electric chainsaws, and they can be more difficult to manage for long periods.
- They require that you have the fuel on hand and carry it with you when you cut.
- If it’s a 2-cycle engine they need a particular combination of fuel and gasoline.
- They emit a scent and blow smoke out.
- They are very noisy and operators should wear hearing protection to prevent loss or injury to hearing.
- They are more costly than electric chain saws but equivalent to battery chainsaws prices.
- To keep them functioning they need regular engine maintenance.
- They use a cord to pull start which can get tough as the engine gets older.
Electric vs Gas Chainsaw Comparison Chart
I have included a comparison chart for electric chainsaws vs gas chain saws below as a way to easily explain all you’ve seen on this page.
Thankfully, it will help you decide easily which type of chainsaw is better for you.
And don’t forget to try out a few more free guides for you: the best corded electric chain sewing guide, the best battery powered chainsaw guide and the best gas chainsaw guide.
|Lightweight and compact||Heavy|
|Quiet and no fuel emissions||Loud and has a gas smell|
|Uses electricity or batteries||2-cycle uses gas/oil mix and 4-cycle uses gas only|
|Starts with a button||Starts by pulling a cord|
|Good for basic yard work||Good for all types of yard work and heavy-duty jobs|
|Relatively no maintenance||Needs routine maintenance|
|Cheapest type (if corded electric model)||Most expensive type|
|Runs forever (if corded electric model)||Runs as long as you can refuel it|
|Limited in reach (if corded electric model)||Extremely mobile with no limits|
|Blades only go up to 18 inches||Blades go up to 72 inches|
Before choosing the type of chainsaw you wish to buy, be it electric or gas chainsaws, be aware of the key parameters such as the purpose of use and ease of use. If you are looking for a compact tool with decent performance, then electric chainsaw would be the best choice. Having said that, if you are looking for heavy-duty works, then gas chainsaws are the best. Hope this article helped you.