Electric vs Gas Chainsaw: Factors to Consider Before Selecting

gas vs electric chainsaw

Chainsaws have become an essential tool for any outdoor enthusiast, woodworker, or homeowner. They provide a convenient and efficient way of cutting trees, branches, and logs, making outdoor tasks much easier to accomplish. However, choosing between an electric or gas-powered chainsaw can be a daunting task, especially for first-time buyers. 

There are different factors to consider before making a decision, ranging from factors like power output, weight, cost, and user-friendliness. 

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at ten essential factors you need to keep in mind when choosing between electric and gas saws. By the end of this article, you’ll be able to make an informed decision based on your specific needs and requirements.

Gas vs Electric Chainsaw: The Major Difference

gas vs electric chainsaw

The major differences between electric and gas chainsaws lie in their power source, power output, noise level, portability, maintenance requirements, and cost. Electric chain saws are powered by electricity, are quieter, and require less maintenance than gas-powered ones. They also tend to be lighter, more affordable, and easier to use than gas chainsaws. On the other hand, gas-powered chainsaws offer the most power and portability of any type of chainsaw but come with higher costs, greater noise levels, and more frequent maintenance requirements.

  • Power Source
  • Power Output
  • Noise Level
  • Portability
  • Maintenance Requirement

Power Source

Electric chainsaws are powered by a cord that plugs into a wall outlet or extension cord. This means they’re limited in range due to the length of the cord but are usually sufficient for small jobs around the yard or garden. Gas-powered chainsaws run on unleaded gasoline mixed with oil and require a much larger power source than electric models. They have more portability since you don’t need a corded connection but must carry fuel on your person when working away from home.

Power Output

Electric chainsaws generally offer lower power levels compared to gas-powered models due to their smaller motor size. Electric motors can vary in output depending on amperage – higher amperage equals higher power – so look for an electric saw with at least 15 amps for optimal performance.  

Gas-powered saws typically offer superior performance thanks to their larger motor size and fuel efficiency; however, they often require two hands to start them up properly, so they can be difficult or even dangerous for novice users.

Noise Level

Electric chainsaws generate considerably less noise compared to gas-powered models, which makes them ideal for use in residential areas where loud noises from tools can be disruptive. Some newer electric models also feature sound-dampening technology, which helps further reduce noise levels significantly, making them virtually silent during operation. 

On the other hand, gas-powered saws generate high decibel levels, which may not be suitable for some urban locations where noise pollution is an issue.


As mentioned before, electric models are limited by their cord length while gas saws do not have this limitation, provided you have enough fuel with you when going offsite to cut logs or timber in remote areas far away from your home base. Both types of saws feature handles that make them easy to transport from one place to another. 

Although some electric versions may be easier to handle due to their lighter weight over gas-powered ones that tend to weigh more when loaded with fuel tanks and gear attachments such as blades or guards for safety purposes.

Maintenance Requirements

Due to the internal combustion engine found inside a gas saw it requires regular maintenance such as oil changes along with spark plug replacement every season as well as air filter cleaning after each use depending on conditions like dustiness or debris present in the area being worked on at any given time.

What are the Different Types of Chainsaws?

Chainsaws are essential tools for a variety of tasks and applications, from simple pruning to heavy-duty timber harvesting. Generally, chainsaws are classified into two main types – electric and gas-powered. Electric chainsaws are lightweight, relatively low in power output, and suitable for occasional light-duty work such as pruning and trimming.

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On the other hand, gas-powered chainsaws have more powerful engines designed for tougher jobs, such as cutting down trees or clearing thick brush. Depending on their intended use, they come in different sizes with varying amounts of power and features. For example, professional arborists often need more powerful models with special features like tool-less chain tensioning systems or anti-vibration handlebars to make the job easier and safer.

  • Electric Chainsaws
  • Gas Powered Chainsaws
  • Battery Powered Chainsaws
  • Cordless Chainsaws

Electric Chainsaws

Electric chainsaws are an ideal choice for homeowners and small-scale commercial users. They provide a lightweight, easy-to-use alternative to gas-powered chainsaws and can be used for basic and light-cutting duties. Electric chainsaws are corded to a power outlet, which makes them easier to use than gas models but restricts their mobility. They are also quieter than gas powered models and provide less vibration.

Gas Powered Chainsaws

Gas powered chainsaws offer more power and portability compared to electric models, making them the preferred choice for larger jobs such as felling trees or large limbs. They require more maintenance than electric models due to the need for fuel and oil changes, but they also offer greater mobility since you don’t have to be near an outlet or extension cord. Gas powered chainsaws tend to be heavier than electric models due to their engine size, so they may not be suitable for long periods of use by smaller individuals.

Battery Powered Chainsaws

Battery powered chainsaws offer the same portability as gas powered models without the need for fuel or exhaust fumes. They are typically lighter weight than their gas counterparts, making them ideal for those who need a lightweight option that can easily move around the yard or property. Battery life varies significantly between different brands and models, so it’s essential to make sure you have enough power on hand before starting a job.

Cordless Chainsaws

Cordless chainsaws offer even greater portability compared to battery powered saws since there is no cord tethering you down. While this type of saw provides maximum convenience, its performance is often limited due to its battery capacity; therefore, it may not be suitable for larger jobs that require extended run times, such as tree felling or large limb cutting. Cordless saws also tend to be more expensive than other types of saws due to the cost of batteries and chargers required with purchase.

What Is The Function Of A Chainsaw?

A chainsaw is an incredibly versatile tool designed for cutting wood quickly and efficiently. When used correctly and safely, it can help make jobs that would otherwise take hours much shorter in duration. The primary function of a chainsaw is to saw through thick chunks of wood such as logs, trees, branches, and more, depending on its size and depth capabilities. To begin operating a chainsaw, one must start by turning on its power switch and pressing down on its primer bulb several times in order to fill its carburetor with fuel for proper operation during use. 

Once this step has been completed, one should then properly grip their chainsaw’s handles with both hands for better control over how it moves while cutting materials apart from one another. After securely gripping their device’s handles, users will then need to pull back on their starter rope handle in order for their chain saw’s chain blades to start spinning into motion at an appropriate speed in order for them to begin effectively slicing through whatever material they are working on at that moment in time. 

  • Starting the Chainsaw
  • Gripping
  • Revving Up
  • Cutting
  • Finishing Up

Starting the Chainsaw

 To operate a chainsaw, you must first turn on the power switch and press the primer bulb several times to fill the carburetor with fuel.


Next, you will need to firmly grip the handles of the chainsaw with both hands for maximum control and stability.

Revving Up 

Once you have a firm grip on the handles, pull back on the starter rope handle to rev up and engage the chain into motion.


 With your strong grip and steady motion, guide your chainsaw through the material that needs to be cut. Depending on what type of material is being cut, you may need to adjust your cutting speed or angle as well as increase or decrease pressure while cutting.

Finishing Up

Once you are done making your cut, slowly release any pressure applied and allow your chainsaw chain to come to a complete stop before setting it down or turning off its power switch.

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Other Key Differences Between Electric vs. Gas Chainsaws

The debate between electric and gas chainsaws has been a long-standing one, with both sides having compelling arguments in their favor. To help you make an informed decision, here are some of the key differences between electric and gas chainsaws:

  • Power & Performance
  • Maintenance & Upkeep
  • Weight & Portability
  • Safety Features
  • Price & Value

Power & Performance

Gas chainsaws typically have more power than electric ones as these run on combustible fuel like gasoline or 2-stroke oil. They are powerful enough to handle large cutting tasks such as felling large trees or bucking logs. On the other hand, electric chainsaws usually require a power outlet to draw power from and hence offer limited cutting power and performance.

Maintenance & Upkeep 

Gas chainsaws require regular maintenance, such as checking the oil levels, sharpening the chain, and cleaning air filters to ensure optimal performance. A regular oil change is also necessary for it to last longer. Electric chainsaws, on the other hand, require minimal upkeep or maintenance – just periodic chain sharpening and cleaning after use should be sufficient for its upkeep.

Weight & Portability

Gas chainsaws tend to be heavier than electric ones due to the added weight of their engine, fuel tank, and starter system components. Thus, they may not be suitable for those who need a chainsaw for light work around the house or yard. Electric chainsaws are much lighter due to their lack of these components, making them an ideal choice for smaller tasks in smaller spaces.

Safety Features 

Both types of chainsaw come with safety features that help prevent accidents during use, such as chain brakes, kickback protection mechanism, and low kickback bars/chains. However, some experts believe that electric ones may provide better user protection against kickback due to their lower torque output compared to gas models, which can be quite powerful when operating at full throttle speed.

Price & Value

Gas models may initially cost more than electric ones. Still, they offer better value for your money in the long run since they tend to outlast their counterparts in terms of performance and reliability when properly maintained over time. Electric models are cheaper but won’t last as long if subjected to heavy workloads or frequent use in challenging environments like dusty construction sites where dust particles can quickly clog up internal parts leading to premature failure or breakdowns of components over time.

Which Chainsaw Is The Best One For You?

The best way to determine which type of chainsaw is ideal for you is by taking into account the size of the job, the type of wood being cut, and whether or not you need portability.

  • Gas-powered chainsaws
  • Battery-powered chainsaws

Gas vs Electric Chainsaw: Choosing the Option

For smaller jobs such as light pruning, an electric chainsaw might be your go-to option. Electric models are lightweight, low maintenance, and quiet. They also tend to be more affordable than gas-powered models. However, they are limited in the power output when compared to their gas counterparts.

Gas-powered chainsaws are more powerful and durable than electric models and can tackle larger jobs with ease. If you’re looking for a chainsaw that has plenty of power and versatility with one or two fuel tanks that offer extended use time between refuels, then this may be the option for you. Gas-powered models tend to have more robust parts that hold up against wear better than electric models over time.

Battery-powered chainsaws come in cordless and corded models—they are convenient for small projects but can become heavy after prolonged use due to their thick battery packs. Battery-operated saws require no gasoline or engine oil for operation, making them an eco-friendly choice for those who want to minimize emissions from their machine. Cordless versions are great if portability is key since they don’t have a cord tethering them down as corded models do; however, they typically don’t provide as much power output as other types of saws do either.

When deciding which type of chainsaw is right for you, think about what size job you intend to do with it most often and how much portability is needed before choosing a model that fits within your budget range. Taking all these variables into consideration should help make finding the perfect saw for your needs easier!

What Are The Different Types Of Chainsaws?

Chainsaws are powerful and versatile tools that can be used for a variety of tasks. They are commonly associated with cutting down trees, but they can also be used to trim branches, cut firewood, and perform other outdoor activities. There are different types of chainsaws available on the market, each designed for specific tasks or user preferences. Some common types include battery chainsaws, gas-powered chainsaws, electric chainsaws, pole saws, and more. Each type has its own unique features and benefits that make it useful in different situations.

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Battery Chainsaws

Battery chainsaws are powered by an internal battery instead of fuel from gasoline or oil. This type of saw is lightweight and cordless which makes it convenient for cutting branches around the yard or garden without fear of running out of power abruptly like with some gas models. Battery saws generally have less power than their gas counterparts but still enough to tackle most jobs around the house, such as pruning shrubs or trimming small limbs. They require less maintenance than a gas saw and come in both corded and cordless configurations depending on the model chosen.

Gas-Powered Chainsaw

Gas-powered chainsaws are one of the most common types found today due to their high power output, but they require more maintenance than battery models due to their reliance on combustible fuels such as gasoline or oil mixes. These saws pack more power than their battery counterparts but require more effort when starting them up and need more frequent tune-ups than electric models due to the combustion engine components inside them. They offer good portability since they don’t rely on cords or batteries for power output, making them a great choice for tackling bigger jobs outdoors, like chopping down trees or large logs into smaller pieces.

Electric Chainsaw

Corded electric saws provide consistent power throughout operation without any interruption because they don’t rely on batteries like some cordless models do. This makes them ideal for longer projects, such as cutting firewood around the property where there is access to an electrical outlet nearby. Electric saws tend to be lighter than gas powered ones, so they won’t put too much strain on your arms if you’re working overhead for an extended period of time.

Maintenance is much simpler compared to a gas powered model since there aren’t any combustion parts inside it that could break down over time requiring replacement parts from an authorized service center like with some gas models, however, these still require regular care and attention just like any other tool in order to keep them functioning properly for years to come!

Pole Saws

Pole saws are specially designed models made primarily for pruning tree branches from higher distances away from ground level without needing a ladder or having to use hazardous ladders. It can be dangerous at times, depending on what type of surface you’re working on (i.e., wet leaves & bark), while using it near tree trunks & branches that may snap unexpectedly while performing cuts with typical handsaws/chainsaws.

Thus, making pole saws are an ideal choice as they allow you to work safely while standing firmly planted on solid ground, thanks in part due to their long extendable poles & sharp blades used during operation. This help reach those hard-to-reach places safely without sacrificing performance through quality cuts – usually adjustable between 6′ – 14′ depending on the model chosen, enabling users varying heights & reach capabilities when needed!


What are the differences between an electric and gas chainsaw?

Electric chainsaws are powered by electricity and have a cord that needs to be plugged into an outlet or a rechargeable battery. Gas chainsaws, on the other hand, are powered by gasoline and have a small engine that drives the chain.

What is the main advantage of an electric chainsaw over a gas chainsaw?

The main advantage of an electric chainsaw is that it is quieter, lighter, and produces fewer emissions than a gas chainsaw. Additionally, electric chainsaws are easier to start, require less maintenance, and are more environmentally friendly.

What is the main advantage of a gas chainsaw over an electric chainsaw?

The main advantage of a gas chainsaw is that it is more powerful and can handle larger cutting jobs than an electric chainsaw. Gas chainsaws are also more versatile and can be used in remote areas where electricity is not available.

Which is better for small to medium cutting jobs, electric or gas chainsaw?

For small to medium cutting jobs, an electric chainsaw is usually more than sufficient. Electric chainsaws are lighter, easier to handle, and produce less noise and emissions than gas chainsaws, making them ideal for use in residential areas.

Which is better for heavy-duty cutting jobs, electric or gas chainsaws?

For heavy-duty cutting jobs, a gas chainsaw is usually the better choice. Gas chainsaws are more powerful and can handle larger cutting jobs than electric chainsaws. They are also more durable and can withstand more wear and tear than electric chainsaws.

Final Verdict!

In conclusion, choosing the best chainsaw for you depends on your particular needs and preferences. While gas powered chainsaws are more powerful and can generally handle tougher jobs, electric models are becoming increasingly popular due to their comparatively lighter weight, lower noise levels, and ease of use. The battery-powered models offer even more portability, but their limited run time should be taken into consideration.

Additionally, many new chainsaws come with additional features, such as automatic oiling systems and anti-vibration handles, that can make them more user-friendly. Ultimately, researching the different types of saws available and considering your budget will help you decide which one is best for your task.

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