How to Safely Operate a Chainsaw

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How to Safely Operate a Chainsaw

Chainsaws are quite useful in a variety of applications, but their power can also become immensely dangerous if not handled correctly. With a single mishandle, the individual using a chainsaw can be irreparably damaged. Since chainsaws cut through wood and other materials without an issue, their hazards should not be underestimated. Before ever even picking up a chainsaw, users should be sure to educate themselves on how to safely operate a chainsaw.

Just a few simple steps are all that is needed to save a chainsaw operator from harm. No matter how careful one is, however, the power of a chainsaw can still be overwhelming at times. Reading materials and strategies that can be found through online marketplaces such as eBay, offer an extra layer of protection. As one of the most dangerous tools, taking extra precautions such as wearing special clothing, avoiding certain movements, and understanding the dangers in detail, are essential in order to safely operate a chainsaw.

Read the Manual

Although this step seems like a no brainer, reading the manual that comes along with a chainsaw is absolutely essential. A chainsaw manual that comes with a specific chainsaw, outlines tips and safety precautions that would otherwise not be covered. Those who recently purchased a chainsaw should make sure to carefully read through the entire manual in order to avoid misuse of the saw. If no manual is available, consider using online marketplaces such as eBay, to find the original manual that came with the saw. Educating oneself on how to use a chainsaw is the first step in using one safely.

Choose a Manageable Chainsaw

One reason many make dangerous, or even tragic, mistakes with a saw is due to the size of the chainsaw being used. Individuals who are beginners at using chainsaws should select a bar blade chainsaw. Saws that utilise petrol and are finely tuned and sharpened, tend to make quicker cuts than electric saws and older, used options. For safety, make sure that the saw being used is properly sharpened and oiled. The more efficiently a chainsaw can make its cuts, the less likely it is that a malfunction will occur.

Wear Protective Clothing

Wearing protective clothing is one of the easiest ways to increase the safety of using a chainsaw. Eye protection is one of the most essential pieces of equipment a chainsaw operator can own. Individuals who are wanting to avoid a dangerous mistake should consider purchasing cut proof clothing. Chainsaw chaps are designed to help people to avoid serious injury due to their unique and durable construction. Also, hard hats and thicker gloves, as well as long sleeves, help chainsaw operators to avoid other injury possibilities.

Survey the Working Area

Before ever starting up a chainsaw, those concerned with safety should survey the area that they are going to be working in, prior to starting a job. A small space that is likely to cramp the operator can be quite dangerous. Being able to avoid falling limbs and trees is equally as important, so make sure there are avenues to get out of the way of potential falling debris. Also, be sure to move any vehicles or valuables that may be in danger of damage due to limb or tree falls. Being proactive before operation is just as important as being careful during chainsaw operation.

Do a Chainsaw Safety Check

Another step to take before ever making a cut, is the all important safety check. Make sure to check the tension on the chain in order to avoid any serious accidents. A properly tightened chainsaw is much more dependable and safer to operate than a loose fitting chain would be. It is also helpful to fill a chainsaw with the right petrol and oil combination to avoid any sudden starts or stops. Be sure to check for any loose bars or areas on the saw that might vibrate or come off during operation.

Start it Safely

Once the proper protective wear is on, the area has been clear, and routes of escape are identified, start the saw according to whatever direction are provided in the manual. If no directions are provided, one of two chainsaw starting strategies should be used. One options is to hold the chainsaw with the left hand and place the back of the saw between the legs of the operator firmly. Another option is to place the chainsaw on the ground with the foot of the operator placed through the handle and pinned to the grown. No matter which option is chosen, use quick, short pulls and make sure the blade is disengaged in order to start the saw safely.

Idle the Saw

After starting the saw, do not begin cutting into a tree or a piece of wood right away. Make sure the chain does not move while the saw is idling. If the chain on the blade does move while idling, take the saw to a professional. A chain that moves and cycles while it is disengaged is a danger to the operator. Even if the chain does not move, make sure to shut the chainsaw off before moving on to different locations.

Avoid Kickback

The danger behind operating a chainsaw almost always lies within the chances of the saw kicking back during operation. Although there are ways to avoid kickback, understanding that is could happen is the first line of defence. When operating a chainsaw, always be prepared for the saw to kick back towards the operator. This kickback causes tens of thousands of injuries per year, and understanding that it can happen helps operators to be ready if in fact it does.

Keeping a solid grip on the saw while operating is essential in controlling the saw and avoiding kickback. Two hands should always be used to operate a chainsaw. While sawing, keep the left elbow locked in order to control the saw and keep it from kicking back. Also, keeping the upper tip of the bar of the saw in wood, constantly lowers the possibility of kickback. Avoiding making any cuts above shoulder height is also a good way to keep the saw from taking a dangerous kickback.

Extra Tips on Avoiding Kickback

One of the best ways to avoid a kickback is to keep a chainsaw in good repair. A sharp chainsaw is able to cut through trees without catching very much at all. Also, cutting into the first cut at full throttle allows for a clean, concise cut. If operators also try to keep the saw close to their body and under full control, the likelihood of a dangerous kick back goes down by quite a bit.

Operate on Two Feet

Leaning over to cut a branch can cause users to possibly lose their balance, and potentially land on the saw itself. When running a chainsaw, it is vital to stay grounded and in control in order to avoid more serious injuries. Although climbing trees and ladders to cut higher limbs is tempting, do not do so. Operating a chainsaw without complete control over one's body often ends in kickback, a fall, or even worse. Some professionals do climb ladders, but if they do so it is with the highest level of training and safety protocols. If difficult cuts in tight areas must be made to accomplish the desired outcome, consider hiring a professional company to complete the more dangerous cuts.

Utilising eBay to Aid in Safely Operating a Chainsaw

Searching for a specific manual for a chainsaw can be almost impossible for those limited to traditional shopping methods. With online marketplaces such as eBay, however, consumers are able to find even the most obscure manuals. In order to find a specific manual, simply enter the manual name into the search bar on the eBay homepage. Narrowing down the field for such a search is fairly easy with the advanced search functionality.

Searching for safety gear that is designed for saw operators is also quite a bit easier when eBay is used. With hundreds of chainsaw chaps, eye protection, and gloves, individuals are able to find almost anything they might need. When shopping, make sure to research both the product and the one selling the product. With advanced ratings that are detailed in every area such as shipping, consumers are able to find the product they need from a seller they like. 


A chainsaw is one of the most dangerous pieces of equipment a person can own. Operating a chainsaw safely takes a certain amount of education. Reading through specific chainsaw manuals helps owners to understand the ins and outs of their machine. When chainsaw operators take the time to clear out an area and wear the proper protection, the danger of such hazards is thus reduced. Add in strategies to more securely operate the saw, and operators are able to avoid possible injuries.

One of the more dangerous elements of chainsaws is their pension to kickback. Kickbacks throw the weight and power of the saw back at the operator. With extra strategies like keeping the tip of the blade in solid wood, keeping an elbow locked, and always keeping a saw close to the body, kickback possibilities are drastically lowered. With the right education and knowledge, chainsaw operators are able to avoid most serious injury.

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