Best Chainsaw Chain Reviews

Finding the right chainsaw for you can be difficult; there are so many factors to consider, and there isn’t one choice that is right for everyone. But even once you own your ideal chainsaw, there is still more work to do: you need to find the best chainsaw chain as well.

Yes, your chainsaw will come with one, but eventually, that chain will wear out and it will need to be replaced. When the time comes, you want to make sure that you purchase one that is effective, safe, and right for your chainsaw. To help you navigate this purchase, check out our buying guide below.

Applications of Chainsaws and Their Chains

Chainsaw chain

You might be wondering how likely it is that you will ever need to replace your chainsaw chain—or even buy a chainsaw in the first place. For most people, cutting up wood is not a part of their daily activities. But many of us will need a quality chainsaw—and quality chainsaw chain—from time to time. What are some common applications?

First, there are those who use chainsaws professionally. They work in construction, landscaping, or the like and need to cut wood for a variety of reasons. Then there are those with trees in their yards or expansive wooded property; a chainsaw can be used to trim back trees and eliminate the dangers poses by falling branches. And if you have a wood burning fireplace, you will likely have a need to cut wood, either by cutting down trees to obtain it or by reducing the size of logs you purchase so they are manageable. Other reasons to keep a chainsaw handy are for DIY construction and furniture projects, cutting other objects to size, such as hay bales, and even ice cutting and carving.

When to Replace a Chainsaw Chain

Sometimes the chain your chainsaw comes with just isn’t the best chainsaw chain. In this case, you might want to replace it immediately. But in most cases, it will take some time for the chain to wear down to the point that you want to replace it. If you notice that the chainsaw is not cutting as well as it used to, or as well as you would like, this indicates that the chain is no longer functioning optimally. Another indication of a problem is that it seems to bend when used.

Now, you do not need to immediately replace a chain that is showing signs of a problem. The first step is to sharpen it; you can do this yourself or head to a service center for them to do this for you. Once your chain reaches the point that it displays problems even after sharpening, it is time to replace it. Also, if teeth come off, it is best to go ahead and replace the chain. Finally, should you see any signs that the chain might be ready to snap, stop using it immediately and replace the chain.

The Importance of Using the Best Chainsaw Chain

The chainsaw chain is the mechanism that actually cuts the wood. It is composed of a series of teeth, and these teeth move at a high rate of speed, biting into the wood and pulling on it, effectively cutting it. While a quality chainsaw chain is more effective at cutting and can manage to complete a job faster, this is not the main reason you should seek out the best chainsaw chain for your tool. Instead, safety is the reason you shouldn’t settle for less than the best.

When a chainsaw chain fails to operate correctly, it poses many safety issues. It can break, causing it to fly off the tool and injure you or another. It can slip off the bar and cut you as you work. It can even bite too deep into the wood, getting stuck and then causing kickback that can injure you, or even cause the wood you are cutting to became dangerous debris. As such, it is vital that you seek out the best chain, not just the best deal.

Top 5 Chainsaw Chains Comparison Table

While we have selected the following five chainsaw chains as the best, you should not strictly purchase from our list; it is much more important that you purchase the chain that best fits your chainsaw. Make certain you know exactly what your chainsaw needs before you buy. If you do not see an option here that is safe for your chainsaw, look for an option from the same manufacturers to ensure both safety and quality.

Product Name

Image

Gauge

Pitch

Length

Our Rating

Husqvarna 531300439

Husqvarna 531300439 18-Inch H30-72 (95VP) Pixel Saw Chain, .325-Inch by .050-Inch

.050 Inch Gauge

.325 Inch Pitch

18 Inch Length

#1
Editor Choice

Husqvarna 531300441

Husqvarna 531300441 20-Inch H80-72 (72V) Saw Chain, 3/8-Inch by .050-Inch

.050 Inch Gauge

3/8ths Inch Pitch

20 Inch Length

#2

Oregon S62 18-Inch

Oregon S62 18-Inch Semi Chisel Chain Saw Chain Fits Craftsman, Homelite, Poulan

.050 Inch Gauge

3/8ths Inch Pitch

18 Inch Length

#3

Oregon 14-Inch

Oregon 14-Inch Chain Saw Chain Fits Craftsman, Echo, Homelite, Poulan, S52

.050 Inch Gauge

3/8ths Inch Pitch

14 Inch Length

#4

Oregon S56 16-Inch

Oregon S56 16-Inch Semi Chisel Chain Saw Chain Fits Craftsman, Echo, Homelite, Poulan, Remington

.050 Inch Gauge

3/8ths Inch Pitch

16 Inch Length

#5

How to Choose the Best Chainsaw Chain

The key to purchasing the best chainsaw chain for your chainsaw is knowing what your chainsaw needs. While it is possible to determine this on your own using various measurements, there is too much room for error, and when it comes to your safety, that is unacceptable. Your best course of action is to consult the user manual for your chainsaw. If you no longer have this, find the serial number for your chainsaw and call the manufacturer to get the specifics.

You might be wondering how a chain could be this complicated. Well, saw chains have many parts. Below are explanations of these parts and the roles they play.

Choose the Best Chainsaw Chain

Depth Gauges

This part of the chain determines how deep the teeth will cut. Shallow cuts mean that the job will take longer; deep cuts run the risk of getting stuck, resulting in kickback and possible debris. The depth gauge you choose is a matter of personal preference.

Tooth Material

The teeth are what bites into the wood, pulling on it and cutting it. The stronger the material of the teeth, the better the chain. Most chainsaw chain teeth are made from chromium-plated alloy. Nearly all chainsaw chains will alternate between left-facing and right-facing teeth, allowing the chain to cut on both sides.

Tooth Type

There are two primary types of chainsaw teeth: full-chisel teeth and semi-chisel teeth. Full-chisel teeth have sharply angled square corners. These teeth can be sharpened easily and are able to split wood rapidly. Semi-chisel teeth feature rounded corners. This means they do not cut as quickly, but the advantage of this type of teeth is that it takes a long time to dull, even when used on hardwood, dry wood, or frozen wood. Your choice regarding tooth type is a matter of personal preference.

Tooth Arrangement

This refers to the balance between the teeth and the drive links that connect the teeth to each other, completing the chain. Standard chains, which are also called full complement and full house chains, offer a one-to-one ratio of tooth to drive link, placing a link between each set of teeth. Full skip chains place two drive links between each set of teeth, and semi-skip chains alternate between the standard one-to-one ratio and the full skip one-to-two ratio. Standard chains thus offer the most teeth, which results in the most efficient results. As such, it is the best tooth arrangement for most applications. Your choice regarding tooth arrangement is a matter of personal preference.

Gauge

We noted the depth gauges above, but this is different. This refers to the thickness of the drive links, which are usually within the range of .05 inches to .063 inches. It is vital that you match this to the gauge of the chainsaw guide bar; this must be an exact match.

Pitch

The pitch refers to the average distance between any two rivets on the chain. However, this distance tends to vary. In order to calculate the pitch, measure the distance between three rivets, then divide that result by two. Common pitches are .325, .375, and .404. It is vital that this is an exact match.

Length

The length of a chain is found by adding up the number of drive lengths. It is vital that it is the correct length, otherwise the chainsaw will be dangerous to operate.

Conclusion

When it comes to selecting the best chainsaw chain for your tool, the most important thing you can do is make sure that you are opting for the correct gauge, pitch, and length for your chainsaw. While we have compiled a list of the five we think are best, it is more important that you seek a chain that has the right options for your power tool. If you are uncertain about what your chainsaw needs, consult the user manual or contact the manufacturer.

Dianne T. Lampe
 

Hi there, I’m Dianne! Welcome to a one-stop shop for your gardening needs. We aim here to offer up a very wide range of information about many aspects of gardening. From flowers and planting through to vegetables and accessories, find all the information you need here. We have a true passion for everything green. We’re highly motivated to develop this site continuously and offer any insights we can alongside useful facts and handy hints. Please get in touch and let us know what you would like us to cover. Thoughts and feedback are always welcomed. Enjoy!

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