How to Safely Transport a Chainsaw?

How to Safely Transport a Chainsaw: A Guide

I’m delighted to provide this comprehensive guide on how to safely transport a chainsaw. As someone who frequently uses chainsaws for yard work and tree removal, I know firsthand how important it is to handle these powerful tools with care. A chainsaw poses serious risks if not transported properly, so following key safety steps is absolutely essential.

In this guide, I’ll walk through everything you need to know to safely move your chainsaw from point A to point B. We’ll cover preparing the saw for transport, carrying and securing it in vehicles, important safety tips, accessories to help, maintenance considerations, and more. Whether you’re an occasional chainsaw user or a professional, this info will help ensure you move your saw securely and avoid potential accidents or damage. Let’s get started!

Preparing the Chainsaw for Transport

How to Safely Transport a Chainsaw: A Guide

The first step in safely moving a chainsaw is getting it ready for transit. Here are some key things to do before carrying or loading your saw:

Turn Off the Engine and Let It Cool

Always turn the chainsaw engine off and let it fully cool before transporting it. Never carry or load a hot saw right after use. The engine and components need time to cool down to prevent burns and fire hazards. Give your saw at least 15-30 minutes to cool before moving it.

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Engage the Chain Brake

Engaging the chain brake immobilizes the cutting chain so it can’t spin during transit. Look for the chain brake lever near the rear handle and push it forward until it clicks into place. This locks the chain in position for safe carrying and loading.

Use a Scabbard or Bar Guard to Cover the Chain

Slipping a snug scabbard or bar guard over the saw chain provides an extra shield during transport. This prevents the sharp cutters from catching on anything or causing accidental contact injuries. Carrying cases often include scabbards, but you can also buy standalone ones that fit your bar size.

Carrying the Chainsaw

When carrying a chainsaw short distances, follow these guidelines to keep secure control:

Carry the Chainsaw with the Bar Pointed Behind You

Hold the rear handle with your right hand and support the engine area with your left. Keep the guide bar pointed behind you. This keeps the chain away from your body and lets you watch where you’re walking.

Ensure the Hot Muffler is Away From Your Body

Position the chainsaw so the muffler that vents hot exhaust gas faces outward, away from contact with your arms, legs or clothing. Keep clear of the muffler until it has cooled to prevent burns.

Transporting the Chainsaw in a Vehicle

To safely transport a chainsaw in a vehicle:

Use a Carrying Case or Protective Material

Place your saw in a heavy-duty chainsaw case designed for transit, or wrap it in protective material like a tarp or moving blanket. This shields the saw from bumps and jarring during the drive.

Secure the Chainsaw with Straps or Tie-Downs

Use strong cargo straps or tie-downs to fix the saw in place in the vehicle. This prevents it from shifting, sliding, or falling over. Apply tension to immobilize the saw.

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Position the Chainsaw Upright or Securely

Set the saw either vertically on its rear handle and engine or lay it flat on its side. Upright is best to avoid chain/bar damage. If laying it down, ensure it’s fully stable and won’t move.

Chainsaw Safety Tips During Transportation

Stay safe when moving your powered chainsaw by heeding these key tips:

Handling the Chainsaw

Always shut off the chainsaw before setting it down or carrying it. Never hold or walk with a running saw. Wait for complete cooling before transit.

Keep the chainsaw cool, loaded horizontally or upright, and secured with tie-downs in transit. Minimize jostling or bumps during loading and unloading.

Chainsaw Storage Options

Store idle saws in heavy-duty cases or custom plywood boxes. This prevents damage, keeps the chain shielded, and deters theft. Attach case lids with latches.

Chainsaw Accessories for Transportation

Specialized accessories can make transporting chainsaws easier and safer. Helpful products include:


This clever device lets you securely carry a chainsaw on a tractor. It mounts to the tractor loader arm or ROPS bar and provides a sturdy cradle to hold the saw in place. No more precarious carrying by hand across the job site!

Carrying Cases

Heavy-duty carrying cases designed for chainsaw storage and transport protect the saw from dings, dust, and weather during transport. They provide safe enclosed storage on vehicles and consolidate saws, manuals, tools, and parts for easy portability. Sturdy latches keep lids secure.

Transporting a Chainsaw in a Truck

Hauling a chainsaw in a truck requires strategic placement and securing:

Chainsaw Placement

It’s best to carry chainsaws in the bed of a truck fully exposed to the air. This allows engine heat dissipation. Avoid transport inside the cab where fumes could enter the vehicle.

Securing the Chainsaw

Immobilize chainsaws in truck beds with ratchet tie downs, straps, or sturdy bungee cords. Apply substantial tension to prevent any shifting or sliding during transport over rough terrain.

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Chainsaw Maintenance for Transportation

Proper chainsaw maintenance before and after transport helps prevent issues:

Checking the Chainsaw Before and After Transport

Inspect your saw thoroughly before transport for any loose, broken, or damaged parts that need repair. Check the chain, bar, engine mount, handle, and fuel/oil caps.

After transport, inspect the saw again to ensure no new damage occurred. Look for leaks, loose caps, shifting, dents, etc. Address any issues before the next use.

Proper Storage After Transportation

Always store your chainsaw in a cool, dry indoor place like a garage or shed after transport. Never leave it outdoors exposed to the elements which can corrode the bar and chain. Storing it securely also deters theft.


Transporting a chainsaw properly is crucial to avoid potential injuries, accidents, or costly saw damage. Always turn off and cool the saw, engage the chain brake, cover the bar, and carry it securely. Use cases and tie-downs to immobilize saws during vehicle transit. Follow routine maintenance and storage best practices. I hope this comprehensive guide gives you the knowledge needed to safely transport your chainsaw to any job site! Let me know if you have any other chainsaw safety questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

How should I carry a chainsaw while walking?

Carry the chainsaw with the bar pointed behind you and the hot muffler away from your body2. Keep the engine cooled and chain brake engaged.

What should I use to cover the chain during transport?

Use a scabbard or bar guard designed to fit your saw to cover the chain during transport12. This prevents contact injuries.

How can I secure a chainsaw in a truck bed?

Use sturdy straps, ratchet tie-downs, or other fasteners across the saw to hold it tightly in place in the truck bed7. This prevents shifting.

What is a SawHaul?

A SawHaul is an accessory that mounts to a tractor loader arm or ROPS bar to provide a secure cradle for carrying a chainsaw on the vehicle8. This allows convenient saw transport around a job site.

How should I store my chainsaw after transportation?

Always store your chainsaw in a cool, dry indoor place like a garage or shed after transporting it1. Never leave it outdoors exposed to the elements.

Can I transport a chainsaw inside a car?

It is not recommended to transport a chainsaw inside a car due to potential dangers from fumes and lack of ventilation5. Transport in a truck bed or trailer is safer.

What should I check on my chainsaw before and after transport?

Carefully inspect for any loose, broken, or damaged parts on the saw before and after transporting it17. Look for leaks, dents, chain/bar damage, etc.

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