All handling of a chainsaw should always be done with the utmost respect. If the chainsaw is used incorrectly or carelessly, an accident can quickly occur with drastic consequences in the form of injuries.
If you are a beginner, it is important to learn the basics of how a chainsaw should be used, whether it is through a course for chainsaw driving licenses or from someone in your circle of acquaintances who has that knowledge and can share.
Here is a checklist of things to keep in mind before and while using a chainsaw:
Table of Contents
Things to think about Before starting the chainsaw
Before starting a chainsaw, it is important to inspect the equipment you are using to make sure it looks complete and functional. For the chainsaw itself, you need to make sure that the guide bar is complete, there is no visible damage to the chain, and it is properly tensioned. Before using it for the first time, It is a good idea to get the help of a knowledgeable person to show how it works.
Also make a habit of checking oil and fuel before starting. Chain oil has a lubricating effect and is important for the chainsaw to work for many years.
Wear protective clothing
Protective clothing is always a very important part of the equipment. It needs to be intact and undamaged, whether it is pants or a helmet. If the equipment has been subjected to external force and there is a scratch or damage, it should be discarded and replaced. Try on the clothes and make sure that they fit well and won’t get in the way while sawing. They must be comfortable while there is a good opportunity to move freely during work. Regardless of whether it is only a little that you intend to saw, protective clothing should always be used.
Protect ears and eyes
Both eyes and ears need protection. The chainsaw is very loud and chips from what you cut can easily get in the eyes. There are good helmets to use that have a protective visor in front of the eyes.
Sometimes there are built-in hearing protection on these helmets, sometimes you need to buy it loose on the side.
Both the visor and the hearing protectors need to fit well and tightly, to avoid permanent damage to, for example, hearing.
Start with something simple
There is no reason to start by felling large and advanced trees, but start with firewood or small logs on the ground to get a feel for how the chainsaw reacts in different situations.
In this way, you prevent accidents with falling trees that can harm both others and yourself. Cutting firewood on your own farm is an example of what might be appropriate to start with. Then you get a sense of how the chainsaw acts and how it feels when it cuts wood.
See the picture below for examples of light sawing. For example, it is on level ground where there is no risk of stepping on the wrong foot or falling with the chainsaw.
Use a secure grip
There are several different ways to hold a chainsaw safely. The thumb grip is a grip that means that you have a really firm grip on the chainsaw with your whole hand. Thumbs and fingers should have a firm and clear grip on the tool. By holding the chainsaw really firmly, the risk of losing grip and accidentally sawing oneself in the leg or the like is reduced significantly. The grip also helps to reduce the risk of throwing if the chainsaw gets stuck when you get maximum strength.
Do not be afraid of the chainsaw
Chainsaws should be respected, but not scared of them and it is good to work closer to your body rather than away from it. In this way, you get a better balance and much better accuracy for when working with the tool. If you move the chainsaw too far away from your body, your arms will not be as strong and you will not be able to stop the chainsaw if it begins to be pulled diagonally. Therefore, it is important to always think about how your using the chainsaw. Not as a scary tool, but simply as an extension of your body.
Never move when the chain is running
It doesn’t matter if you need to walk just a few steps or longer, the chain should always be still when moving. When the chain is running, you need to plant your feet firmly on the ground to keep your balance. After turning it off, make sure the chain is stopped before you move on to the next task. If the chain were to come off at the same time as you would trip or falls, it can cause catastrophic damage.
Keep a good safety distance from others
When using a chainsaw, it is important to keep a sufficient distance to prevent accidents. The chainsaw is so loud that you can’t tell if anyone is approaching. Therefore, it is estimated that a distance of at least 3 meters is required to ensure safety. Do not sneak up on or touch a person using a chainsaw while the chainsaw is running.
Finally – Keep calm
It certainly does not help to be stressed when handling a chainsaw, it is a tool that should be handled calmly.
These are some tangible starter tips on how to handle the chainsaw in a safe way, solid tips that are good to keep with you.
To learn more on how to best use and handle your chainsaw we have some additional guides: