Best Electric Chainsaws In The UK – Reviews 2018 – 2019

Product
Top Choice
BLACK+DECKER 36 V Lithium-Ion Chainsaw, 30 cm
Great Value
Makita DUC302Z Cordless Li-Ion Chainsaw, 36 V (Body only)
Worx WG303E 2000W 40cm Electrical Chain Saw
Power
36 V Lithium-Ion
36 V Lithium-Ion
2000 watts
Tension Control
Patented SDS Tool
Adjustment Lever
Automatic chain tension adjuster
Oil Control
Auto oiling system
Chain oil level window, Automatic chain oiling
Automatic oil management system
Blade Length
30 cm
30 cm
40 cm
Chain Speed
5 m/s
8.3 m/s
12 m/s
Brake System
No
Electric chain brake, Kickback brake
Electric chain brake
Chain Type
Anti Kick-Back
Not Specified
Not specified
Ergonomic Design
Customer Rating
Top Choice
Product
BLACK+DECKER 36 V Lithium-Ion Chainsaw, 30 cm
Power
36 V Lithium-Ion
Tension Control
Patented SDS Tool
Oil Control
Auto oiling system
Blade Length
30 cm
Chain Speed
5 m/s
Brake System
No
Chain Type
Anti Kick-Back
Ergonomic Design
Customer Rating
Great Value
Product
Makita DUC302Z Cordless Li-Ion Chainsaw, 36 V (Body only)
Model
Power
36 V Lithium-Ion
Tension Control
Adjustment Lever
Oil Control
Chain oil level window, Automatic chain oiling
Blade Length
30 cm
Chain Speed
8.3 m/s
Brake System
Electric chain brake, Kickback brake
Chain Type
Not Specified
Ergonomic Design
Customer Rating
Product
Worx WG303E 2000W 40cm Electrical Chain Saw
Model
Power
2000 watts
Tension Control
Automatic chain tension adjuster
Oil Control
Automatic oil management system
Blade Length
40 cm
Chain Speed
12 m/s
Brake System
Electric chain brake
Chain Type
Not specified
Ergonomic Design
Customer Rating

Top Electric Chainsaws On The Market

The mention of chainsaws can bring palpitations to many people.  Palpitations of fear from the horror movies they have seen, or frissons of delight if they are of such a mind as to enjoy cutting stuff down with a chainsaw, but first, what does a chainsaw actually do?

Simply put, a chainsaw is a chain, a bit like a bicycle chain with cutting teeth, attached to a motor that rotates the chain around an elliptical framework (the chainsaw bar) that allows the chain to be pressed against something needing cut.

Nowadays they come in both electric and petrol variants,.

Electric chainsaws are generally more powerful than electric chainsaws.   Corded electric chainsaws are limited by the use of a cord, and cordless tend to be a bit heavy because of the batteries and have a limited work time because of the batteries running down.

They can be used in a professional environment to reduce waste to a manageable size, and to chop stuff up. On the non-professional front by folk wanting to cut up wood, perhaps gardeners trimming trees or folk simply wanting to chop up logs for the fire.

What you should consider when planning to buy a chainsaw.

  • Power

Electric or Petrol is the big question.   It really depends on what you will be using the chainsaw for.

If it’s just a little light trimming of trees or hedges, the electric is probably the best bet.  They are usually lighter and cheaper than petrol chainsaws.  Easier starting, no yanking away at a starting cord, just press the trigger.

The downside is battery life in cordless, and the need to run a cord for the corded.  When considering electric, unless you are in a small garden where you can easily reach a plug point, a cordless is the better option.

Cordless are obviously more mobile than the corded, but there is a catch in that they have a hidden cost.  The purchase pack doesn’t usually include the batteries or charger, and these must be bought separately.  However, many major brands have batteries than can be used interchangeably throughout their power tool range, so you may not need to buy them after all.

Petrol chainsaws are best for the big jobs like felling trees because they tend to be more powerful.  They are usually noisier and heavier than the electric, and because of the engine, need more maintenance.  Also, getting it started can be an absolute pain.

  • Handling and Comfort

They can be quite heavy, and you could be carrying it around for a while.  The absolute weight is important, and balance equally so.  An unbalanced saw can be difficult to control.

  • Vibration

Vibration comes from two areas, the engine and the cutting process.  Engine vibrations can be minimized, not so much from the cutting action.

  • Safety

The big thing here is to understand that chainsaws are not toys.  They are inherently dangerous tools. Keep your eyes open and be alert at all times when using one.

One specific problem can be kickback.  The saw sometimes bucks when it first enters the material being cut.  If that is towards you, it could be a problem.

A second is jamming.  Sometimes when cutting a particularly thick piece of wood, the wood can tighten around the saw and jam the blade.  The saw should have an automatic cutout if that happens, other wise the engine might overheat and damage the saw and potentially the user.

Finally, chain breaks.  A chain can break, and this is not pleasant when the loose ends start flailing around and flying about like shrapnel.  And that leads us to the final consideration

  • Protective Wear

It is generally not clever to use a chainsaw bareheaded and wearing a T-Shirt, shorts and flip-flops.  At the very least you will need:

    • A hard hat with visor or at the very least a hard hat and safety glasses to protect your head and eyes from the stuff that is flying around.
    • Gloves to protect your hands from being cut by the flying stuff and if padded to reduce the vibration a little.
    • Protective boots. A pair of boots with steel toecaps to protect your feet from the chainsaw itself and any heavy pieces of material that might fall on them.
    • Ear defenders or plugs. Some, particularly petrol chainsaws are very loud.
    • Chainsaw trousers: also known as chaps or chainsaw leggings, they are made of multiple protective layers to keep your legs protected.

On the hard hat question, there are hard hats with integral ear defenders and a visor available on the market.  We had a relative who, some years ago used a WW2 Wehrmacht helmet as a safety hat.  He spent a lot of time trying to find an authentic pair of desert goggles, but never did.

Here are three chainsaw you might like to consider.

BLACK+DECKER 36 V

Black and Decker are one of the better-known British manufacturers of power tools.   This saw is a cordless battery powered saw.

The 36V battery is powerful enough for heavy duty cutting, such as general garden wood management tasks and for preparing firewood and other general DIY maintenance tasks.   It is evenly balanced due mainly to the secondary, bale handle, ensuring that it sits comfortably and securely in your hands.  B&D have also built in several safety features.

Batteries are included in the purchase pack.

It has the following specification:

  • Item Weight 5 Kg
  • Product Dimensions 22 x 72 x 24 cm
  • Batteries: 1 Lithium ion batteries required. (included)
  • Power Source Battery
  • Voltage 36 volts
  • Blade Length 30 centimetres
  • Included 36V Lithium Chainsaw 30cm
  • Batteries included? Yes
  • Battery Cell Type Lithium Ion

Features include

  • An ergonomic design
  • A tool-free tension adjuster
  • A leak-free automatic oil management system
  • The battery is fully charged in 90 minutes
  • An average of just over 550 cuts per full battery charge
  • A lock-off safety switch
  • Anti-kickback features
  • Non-slip handles

User reviews are generally very positive, with very few gripes.

Makita DUC302Z

This saw comes from the Makita stable.  Makita are one of the foremost suppliers of power tools and are very well regarded in the marketplace.   They recommend that it should be used by trained tree surgeons only.

It has the following specification:

  • Item Weight 25 Kg
  • Dimensions                     5 x 41.5 x 21.5 cm
  • Batteries: 2 18V  Lithium ion batteries required. (not included)
  • Power Source Battery
  • Voltage 36 volts
  • Blade Length 30 centimetres
  • Included 36V Lithium Chainsaw 30cm
  • Battery Type Lithium Ion

Features include

  • An ergonomic design
  • A tool-free tension adjuster
  • A leak-free automatic oil management system
  • The battery is fully charged in 90 minutes
  • A low-battery warning light
  • Electric chain brake
  • Anti-kickback features, including a brake
  • Non-slip handles
  • eXtreme Protection Technology against inclement weather
  • Soft Start
  • Compatible 18V batteries from other Makita power tools are compatible

In the box:

  • 1 x Makita DUC302Z twin 18 V LXT chainsaw
  • 1 x Saw chain
  • 1 x Guide bar
  • 1 x Guide bar cover

Note that batteries are not included.

User reviews are generally favourable, but one user did complain that after heavy use the chain had been seriously blunted, and there was no chain sharpener or chainsaw round file in the purchase pack.

Worx WG303E

As opposed to the two previous, the Worx WG303E 2000W Electrical Chain Saw is a corded unit.

  • Item Weight 7 Kg
  • Dimensions                     88 x 37.4 x 20.4 cm
  • Power Source Cabled Mains Power
  • Power 2000 Watts
  • Blade Length 40 centimetres

Features include

  • An ergonomic design
  • Automatic chain tension adjuster and lubricator, with tool-free adjustment
  • A leak-free automatic oil management system
  • Electric chain brake
  • Anti-kickback features, including a brake
  • Non-slip handles

What’s in the box:

  • 1 x 2000W Chainsaw
  • 1 x Blade protection cover
  • 1 x Blade lubrication oil
  • 1 x Chain
  • 1 x Bar

User reviews are generally very favourable.  One gripe was that it drinks chain oil and that the supplied bottle of lubrication oil isn’t sufficient for even the first cutting session.

Summary

The best saw rather depends on the use you want to put it to.  For a small garden, the Worx is a well-regarded saw, but as a corded unit it isn’t suited to a more mobile requirement.

Between the B&D and Makita saws, for us the B&D shades it.  This is because it comes with a battery, but with the Makita you will need to buy two 18V batteries and a charger, taking it well beyond the cost of the B&D.  Unless you already have a tool that uses compatible Makita 18V batteries.

Be British, buy Black and Decker.