How often to sharpen chainsaw

How often to sharpen a chainsaw blade
(Image credit: Getty Images)

For sheer power, chainsaws are hard to beat. If you need to tame an unruly yard, they help you to complete your pruning and trimming jobs in no time. It’s no surprise that a dull blade can hamper performance. We’ll consider how often to sharpen chainsaws to keep them in top condition. A dull blade can also risk your safety. It’s vital to sharpen your device regularly to protect yourself and stay in control. 

Unsure how often to sharpen your chainsaw? Sharpening your device little and often can take the chore out of it and help you achieve the best results. We’ll cover the telltale signs that it’s time to give your chainsaw attention. 

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How often to sharpen chainsaw

In a nutshell, how often to sharpen chainsaws depends on how regularly you use them. You’ll need to maintain your device more frequently if you’re a pro than if you’re only using it for seasonal jobs. 

While there’s no definitive answer on timing, you’ll be pleased to know there are clues that your chainsaw needs sharpening. Let’s dive in.

The first sign is when when your blade looks dull. Notice how the teeth turn shiny and bright when you sharpen them. This is what you’re aiming for. 

Another telltale sign is when you have to exert more pressure. “The saw is not doing the work -  you are,” says Rick Jason Martineau, Senior Training Specialist for Tree Professional Products at Husqvarna. Sharpen your blade to improve performance.

Rick Jason Martineau
Rick Jason Martineau

Rick Jason Martineau has 5+ years of experience at Husqvarna Group and is currently the Senior Training Specialist for Tree Professional Products, Safety, and Advocacy for North America. He has had the privilege of being involved in the forest industry for over 40 years.

Pay attention to the size of the wood chips. “Look for smaller wood chips or more sawdust than chips,” advises Rick. Your blade is not performing at maximum power -  it needs sharpening. 

There are scenarios when you need to sharpen your chainsaw immediately. “If you strike an object such as a nail or a solid surface, such as rocks, pavement, cement, or gravel, just stop. It's the perfect time to touch up the chain,” says Rick. 

The secret to sharpening your chainsaw is to do it little and often. “The longer you wait, the harder it is on the saw, the harder it is on you, and the more time it takes to sharpen,” cautions Rick.

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Louise Bond

Louise Bond is a UK-based writer and the founder of The Cove Copy. She has been published in The Guardian, Breathe, Fit & Well, Top Ten Reviews, and more. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her out in nature, whether hiking in the woods or pottering in the garden. 

With contributions from