Care & Maintenance of your Chainsaw

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Frequent maintenance and care of your chainsaw will not only ensure durability and reliability but also increase safety aspects too. If your appliance well cares for you will make your work tasks easier, less frustrating, and save money in the long run. Also, it should be taken into account that the chainsaw is a powerful and potentially dangerous machine if not handled responsibly and correctly, so this article offers tips not only for looking after your machine but also tips for everyday use. Sacrificing a few minutes to its maintenance could reward you with adding many years to the lifespan of the chainsaw.

Routine chainsaw maintenance

Keeping to a regular routine of on-going care will increase the longevity of the machine and its performance. The most important part of the device is the chain itself and will need regular attention.

To ensure the chain is performing at optimum performance and safe it warrants your attention on a daily basis. All chains are different. There are an infinite number of permutations with a pitch, gauge, drive link count, file size cutter type etc. Normally a new chain will tend to “stretch out” after it has been used after a short while. This could lead to the chain becoming loose and becoming separated from the guide bar. It is therefore recommended to cease work and readjust it. By checking that it is accurately modified will ensure that it moves efficiently and easily as it is pulled through the material you are cutting.

After using your chainsaw for around ten hours you need to think about cleaning it and changing the air filtration system. The latter is especially useful as it will lead to the machine using less fuel and will run much cooler.

Keeping your chainsaw sharp

When the chain is used over a long period of time it is likely to become blunted. This will lead to the chainsaw performing at less than the desired performance. You will know when the blade has become dull because you will need to exert more pressure when working. Safety is of utmost importance when sharpening so consult your manual. Experienced users will know to use a well-lit area and to make sure the tension is correct so it doesn’t move around. Make sure to wear heavy duty gloves.

Even though you may be sharpening the chain yourself it is important to pass it in front of a professional after you have sharpened it once or twice as you need to ensure you are sharpening to the correct filing angles. On every chainsaw, each blade has its own angle that the cutters follow to execute the sharpness of a cut. Generally speaking the angle you will find on your model will be in the range between 30 and 40 degrees. Newer chains will have a line stamped on the top plate of every cutter to indicate the tooth’s angle. All teeth must be uniformly filed according to this angle. Filing the teeth at an improper angle might mean that the blade will cut more to the left or right.

Fuel Tank carburetor and filter

It is also important that the saw is well oiled, so check lubrication on a regular basis. As a way of routine, it is useful to check oil levels every time you actually re-fuel your chainsaw. As your chainsaw is going to face on with a great deal of garden debris and foliage it is imperative you keep the working parts clean.

To clean the fuel tank you need to replace the fuel filter if it has become dirty or clogged. Remove the fuel line if old petrol has dried on the line or if it has cracked. Also, it is recommended to replace the fuel line once every season if you have left the petrol in the tank while in storage. You can buy special carburetor cleaner from any good DIY store. It is also simple to apply. Take off the air filter. Open the choke. Start the saw on idle and spray a one-second blast of carburetor cleaner into the hole.

The ignition system and starter rope

On most models, you will find a rubber cover lays over the spark plug. Take off the cover and unscrew the spark plug with an appropriate tool. Check all of the ignition wires for loose connections or cracks that expose the wiring. Replace any damaged wires and cables.

Unhook the lead ignition wires from the ignition switch and test the engine for a spark. The starter cord can cause a lot of tedious frustration if it is not working properly so regular checks are useful to keep it at optimum performance.

Tips on everyday use

This powerful appliance should always be treated with respect for both peak performance safety and for durability. Improper use of the chainsaw can only lead to a blunted or broken machine; it could also obviously lead to injuries as well. Before using your chainsaw for the first time read the manual thoroughly so you are aware of where the safety features are (kickback lock, chain brake, and hand guard.) Never get into bad habits of holding the chainsaw in one hand while it is on, or manoeuvring it during a task so the guard is not in front of your hands. Never start the chainsaw unless it is firmly placed on the ground on an even open surface.

Be aware that different points on the blade will cause “kickback”. Cutting using solely the top of the blade will propel back into the operators face; using the bottom of the chain will drag the operator into the wood. If you are using an electric chainsaw always be wary of where your cord is when you are working so it will not be a cut or be a trip hazard to you or others. When using a petrol chainsaw ensure you have the mixture of oil and petrol correct and you are using specifications recommended by the dealer.

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