Best Professional Chainsaws – 2020 Complete Buyer’s Guide

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When you work with chainsaws at a professional level, you really want to make sure you are finding the right saw for you. Luckily, we have compiled a list of some of the best professional chainsaws available on the market today, as well as the top qualities you should look out for when purchasing one.

Comparison Chart of the ​Best Professional Chainsaws

Product

Our Rating

​Price

​​Dewalt DCCS670X1 FLEXVOLT

​Best Professional Chainsaw on the Market

​Echo cs-490

​Runner-up

​Redback 106493

​Best for the Money

​Husqvarna 460 Rancher

​Best Husqvarna Professional Chainsaw

​Husqvarna 455 Rancher

​Editor's Pick

What Are The Components of a Professional Chainsaw?

If you are new to working with chainsaws, you might not know how they work. Here is an overview of the three most important parts to a saw:

Power Head/Engine

The “power head” is the engine of the saw. Chainsaw engines can be powered by gasoline (usually the most powerful), or electric power, typically through either an electrical cord or a battery pack. Engine power determines what your saw will be able to cut.

Cutting Chain

The chain is what actually makes your chainsaw’s cuts, and is therefore the most dangerous component of the tool. Chains can range in size and amount of links, and you should keep in mind that chains will eventually become dull and need to be replaced.

Guide Bar

The chain is looped around the saw’s guide bar, which, true to its name, helps guide the chain through the cut. Guide bar length varies depending on the size of the chainsaw and its intended use. Longer bars usually indicate higher cutting capacity.

Can Any Chainsaw Be Used for Professional Clearing?

The short answer is yes, but the longer answer is that any chainsaw can be used for professional clearing – for a certain length of time. However, certain chainsaws that were designed for more casual homeowner use will likely not be able to go the distance for regular professional clearing jobs.

Saws used for professional clearing have longer bars and more high quality parts so that they can handle daily use on tough hardwoods. It would be best to invest in one of these saws if you anticipate regular professional use in your future.

Characteristics of Our Favorite Professional Chainsaws

How do you know what makes a good saw? We have narrowed it down for you:

Balance

Because professional chainsaws are often larger than other kinds of saws, it is particularly important to find a saw that is well balanced. The better your saw’s balance, the easier (and safer) it will be to operate.

Power

Many professional saws are powered by gasoline engines, though you can find some solid ones operating on electrical/battery power as well. No matter what the source, make sure your saw packs a punch! Professional saws need a lot of power to get their cutting jobs done.

Weight

Weight is related to balance – these saws can be huge, and you want to make sure they are still at a weight that you can safely handle. Many saws are intentionally designed to reduce their overall weight, and you should go with a lighter saw if you can.

Quick Take: Best ​Professional Chainsaws

Hoping to cut right to the chase? Below are the best ​professional chainsaws:

  1. ​​Dewalt DCCS670X1 FLEXVOLT
  2. Echo cs-490
  3. Redback 106493

Review of the Best Professional Chainsaws

Since you have a better sense of what to keep an eye out for, let’s check out some of our favorite products:

​Best Professional Chainsaw on the Market:
​Dewalt DCCS670X1 FLEXVOLT

PROS

  • ​D​ewalt provides excellent customer service – one customer reported a tree falling on his saw and cracking it in two, and D​ewalt replaced it at no charge
  • ​Has an automatic chain brake safety mechanism
  • ​60 volt battery packs a punch
  • ​Great power to weight ratio
  • ​Easy to use

CONS

  • ​Battery takes about two to two and a half hours to charge
  • ​Washer attaching chain to sprocket is cheaply made
  • ​Does not have a protective outer casing

What Are People Saying?

People are big fans of how quiet this saw is. Some users even report that it runs at such a low volume level, they do not need to use ear protection at all while they are operating it. If you are sick and tired of the “earmuff headache,” this is the saw for you.

What We Love About It

We are most impressed by the FLEXVOLT technology included on this DEWALT model. This is a patented design by DEWALT to keep the saw’s battery in an optimal state. FLEXVOLT allows the saw to maintain cutting performance without rapidly draining its battery life.

Who’s This Perfect For?

If safety is your top priority when working with power tools, and chainsaws in particular, you probably will not be able to find a model with more safety features than this DEWALT. It has a safety guard on the front handle to keep splinters from flying into your hand (or anywhere else), and also boasts an automatic chain brake.

Final Thoughts

The DEWALT is our best option for a professional chainsaw on the market today. From its enhanced safety features to its lower noise levels, it is really something else, but it is the FLEXVOLT technology that truly separates this model apart from the crowd.

​Runner-up:
​Echo CS 490

PROS

  • ​Weighs slightly under eleven pounds
  • ​Echo provides a five year warranty
  • ​Durable, will last for a long time
  • ​Chain tension is easy to adjust
  • ​Has a ton of power

CONS

  • ​Included chain is not the highest quality, customer will likely want to replace it with another
  • ​If you turn your saw off between cuts, it can be difficult to start up again
  • ​Some customers reported problems with their carburetors

What Are People Saying?

People love how quickly this model can make its cuts. Some users report that even when they are operating this saw on logs with diameters of up to three and a half feet, it still chews through them just as fast as if they were three and a half inches instead.

What We Love About It

We appreciate some of the intentional design features to enhance efficiency on this model. First of all, no user has experienced any leaking oil, which will save you some time and money. But also, the engine is specifically engineered to not use a ton of gasoline – saving you more money, and also saving the environment.

Who’s This Perfect For?

Users who plan on cutting through tough hardwoods such as oak will love this Echo model. Not only is it awesome at chewing through hardwood, it also runs well in any position – so even if you have to turn it upside down to get the best cutting angle, it will still operate at full capacity.

Final Thoughts

This model is an excellent option for anyone who is looking for a top of the line saw when it comes to efficiency. If you want to make fast cuts, or just to maximize your gasoline and oil capacity, this is the best saw option for you.

​Best for the Money:
​Redback 106493

PROS

  • ​Brushless motor is able to sense the optimal sawing speed to prevent saw from becoming bogged down
  • Has an oversized handle and trigger for additional safety measures
  • ​Redback provides a one year warranty
  • ​Battery charges quickly
  • ​Convenient to use

CONS

  • ​Chain tightener is cheaply made – just a plastic knob whose teeth wear out fairly quickly
  • ​Some people report issues with their battery chargers
  • ​Battery runs out of charge after about two hours

What Are People Saying?

People are blown away at how tough this little saw is. Users are reporting that it can easily cut through thick woods such as silver maples, birch, and even water oak. Plus, it can handle trunks that are up to twenty four inches in diameter!

What We Love About It

You will likely be extremely suspicious when you see the price tag on this model – what is wrong with this saw that Redback can sell it at such a low, low price? But the truth is, there is no catch – this saw is just an incredible deal.

Who’s This Perfect For?

Battery operated saws are always a good option for those who do not want to deal with the heavy clunkiness of gas saws – and this saw has maximized its battery power. The included battery packs a hundred and twenty volts, and charges extremely quickly, so you do not have to waste time waiting when you could be sawing.

Final Thoughts

Redback has manufactured one of the most appealing saws on the market today – tough on hardwoods, yet still incredibly easy on your wallet. If battery operated saws are your jam, you will not be able to find a better deal than this Redback 106493.

Best Husqvarna Professional Chainsaw​:
​Husqvarna 24-inch 460 Rancher

PROS

  • ​Durable and tough enough to handle being used on a daily basis
  • ​Has a twenty four inch long bar for the biggest cuts
  • ​Easily chews through hard woods such as oak
  • ​Endorsed for use by professional loggers
  • ​Easy to handle for its size

CONS

  • ​Has a tendency to bind up when cutting larger pieces
  • ​Piston rings can seize up

What Are People Saying?

Users were big fans of this model’s design details, including a side mounted chain tensioner. The location of the tensioner on the side of the model prevents any kind of saw kickback. Plus, the high quality material used throughout the saw’s construction makes it stand out.

What We Love About It

We appreciated the anti vibration technology included on this saw. It is so effective that recent buyers say they no longer feel the need to take regular breaks when operating this model in order to regain feeling in their hands after vibration causes numbing.

Who’s This Perfect For?

This model is specifically designed to handle tougher, hard woods. If you anticipate needing to cut through a large chunk of hard wood, or even soft wood that has been dead for a while and has become extremely hard, this is the model for you.

Final Thoughts

This Husqvarna chainsaw is a real beast when it comes to harder wood options. It also has some excellent design features, such as anti vibration technology and a chain tensioner mounted on the side of the saw. If you want a saw that can go the distance, you have to go with this model.

Editor's Pick​:
​Husqvarna 20-inch 455 Rancher

PROS

  • ​Capable of making exceptionally precise cuts
  • ​Two stroke engine packs quite a punch
  • ​Combines durability with performance
  • ​Comes in at just about twelve pounds
  • ​Great for cutting in any conditions

CONS

  • ​Both the kill switch and the choke pull feel flimsy to operate
  • ​Blade is shorter when compared to competitor brands
  • ​Cold starting can be difficult with this model

What Are People Saying?

Recent buyers loved the air cleaning system built into this model. It is exceptionally efficient at clearing out big particles as well as general debris. The system reduces the chance that the filter will clog up quickly and require manual cleaning.

What We Love About It

We were impressed by the patented X Torq technology included on this Husqvarna. If you are interested in a model that is more environmentally friendly than others on the market today, you will be a big fan as well. X Torq technology reduces fuel emissions by up to twenty percent and overall emissions by up to sixty percent.

Who’s This Perfect For?

Because this is one of the smaller models available on our list, this is a great option for those who maybe do chainsaw work as a side hustle instead of their full time gig. It is particularly great for storm work and cleaning up downed limbs.

Final Thoughts

The Husqvarna 455 is an overall excellent option and our editor’s pick for a variety of reasons, including its X Torq technology that boosts its fuel efficiency, its handy air cleaning system, and its smaller size. You will not be disappointed when working with this saw.

Benefits of Investing in a Quality Professional Chainsaw

Here is why you should always choose quality over quantity:   

Durability

As mentioned above, the quality separating casual chainsaws from professional chainsaws is their durability. If a chainsaw is not built to last, it will not hold up for long in a professional setting. Get a high quality saw that can go the distance for you.

Safety Measures

The more high quality the saw, the more enhanced its safety measures will be. Features such as an automatic chain brake or a two button start can seem inconsequential, but it is really impossible to overemphasize how important maintaining safety is when working with these intense power tools.

Intentional Design

How does an automatic oiling system sound? Or a chain tensioner that is on the side and out of the way? The nicer your saw, the more these little design features will pop up. They may seem insignificant, but they can really enhance your overall efficiency when completing cutting jobs.

People Also Ask

When working with professional chainsaws, here are the most common questions that pop up:  

Are Electric Chainsaws as Good as Gas?

The answer to this question depends on how you define “good.” If “good” to you means “powerful,” then gas chainsaws are better than electric chainsaws. However, if “good” to you means “convenient to use,” “lightweight,” “easy to start,” and “better for the environment,” then electric chainsaws will win out.

What Size Chainsaw Do I Need to Cut Down a Tree?

It can vary depending on the size of the tree in question! A good rule of thumb is the Two Inch Rule. Measure the diameter of what you are trying to cut (in this case, the tree trunk), add two inches to that number, and that is how long your chainsaw’s bar should be.

What Does MS Stand for on Stihl Chainsaws?

If you are working with Stihl saws, you may be wondering why they are all branded with the initials “MS.” MS stands for motorsagen, a German word translated to mean motor saw in English.

What Type of Oil Do I Need for My Chainsaw?

All chainsaw chains need regular oiling in order to run effectively. Petroleum based oil is typically used for these tools. Most chainsaw manuals will describe the kind of oil that would be best for a particular model, and also list alternative options. 

Conclusion

Professional chainsaws are some of the most intense power tools available on the market today. When choosing one, make sure you find yourself a model that will work best for your specific wants and needs. We promise that you will not be able to go wrong with one of the awesome models from our list above. Happy cutting!