The Basics of Using a Chainsaw for Beginners
The Basics of Using a Chainsaw for Beginners - Tractor Supply Co.
Getting to know your chainsaw and how it works is an important part of learning how to properly use this power tool.
The most important chainsaw parts have to do with safety and are what you should learn about first:
- Chain Brake: Located on the top handle of the chainsaw, the chain brake is used to stop the chainsaw chain from rotating around the bar. There are two ways to engage the chain brake: by pushing the handle forward, or by force of inertia that occur when the saw kicks back. You can learn more about chainsaw kick back in the next section.
- Chain Catcher: Located on the bottom of the chainsaw is a part called a chain catcher. This is a safety part because it prevents the chainsaw chain from flying off the bar if it breaks or comes loose from its track.
- Throttle Lock: Located on the top of the rear handle. Push down on the throttle lock to prevent accidental throttle acceleration. The throttle control is located on the inside of the rear handle. Squeeze the throttle control before locking the throttle lock into place.
- Stop Control: The stop control allows the user to stop the engine quickly with one motion. Read the owner's manual for your chainsaw to find out where the stop control is located on your chainsaw.
- Right-Hand Guard: Located on the bottom of the upper handle, the right-hand guard shields your hand from the chainsaw chain in case the chain breaks or comes loose.
Kick Back Protection
Chainsaw kick back happens when the nose, or upper tip of the chainsaw chain comes into contact with something and "throws" the saw upward and backward toward the user. As you can imagine, kick back can be dangerous if you are not experienced with working with a chain saw and you are not expecting the saw to behave in this way. Use the chain brake to stop the chainsaw chain from rotating around the bar when a kick back happens.
Before starting your chainsaw, make sure you have checked to make sure everything is ready to run, including the chainsaw chain, saw teeth, chainsaw tensioning and lubrication:
- Chainsaws run more smoothly and therefore are safer to operate if they have a nice sharp chain. Make sure your chainsaw chain has been recently sharpened prior to use.
- Ensure your saw has the proper tension on the chain around the bar. You should always retention a new chainsaw chain after operating it for the first couple of hours. Also retention chains after long periods of non-use, such as in the spring season when you are tuning up your power equipment.
- Check the oil level in your chainsaw to make sure there is enough lubrication in the engine and circulating around the bar and chain. Improper lubrication can cause engines to stop working and tools to malfunction. Check with your local Tractor Supply Co. store to find out what type of lubricant you need to help your chainsaw run smoothly.
- Ensure you have the right amount and type of fuel in your chainsaw. When filling your chainsaw with fuel, use caution by securing the saw on a flat surface. Most chainsaw models come with an overfill protection feature that helps reduce spillage during fueling. Move the chainsaw from where it was fueled to a different location prior to starting the engine to reduce the risk of fire.