Best Small Chainsaw Reviews 2019
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The Best Small Chainsaws in 2021: For Limbing & Home Use

An important aspect of doing a job right is choosing the right tool. Large chainsaws are great when you’re cutting 36-inch thick trees, but for trimming, or smaller tasks in your yard, such as limbs or bushes, you should consider investing in the small chainsaw.

Not all chainsaws are the same, so size is just one of the factors while choosing the best tool. You’ll also have to consider the power source, the jobs you’ll need the chainsaw for, and where you plan to use your tool. In this article, we want to help you to find the best product that will be most suitable for your needs.

The Best Small Chainsaws Table

PRODUCT FEATURES
BLACK+DECKER LCS1020 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Chainsaw, 10 - The Best Small Chainsaws in 2021: For Limbing & Home UseBLACK+DECKER LCS1020 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Chainsaw, 10
  • Weight: 7.2 lbs
  • Bar Length: 10 inches
  • Warranty: 2 years
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Ryobi P546 10 in. ONE+ 18-Volt Lithium+ Cordless Chainsaw - The Best Small Chainsaws in 2021: For Limbing & Home UseRyobi P546 10 in. ONE+ 18-Volt Lithium+ Cordless Chainsaw
  • Weight: 7.48 lbs
  • Bar Length: 10 inches
  • Warranty: 3 years
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GreenWorks 20222 Greenworks 14-Inch 9-Amp Corded Chainsaw - The Best Small Chainsaws in 2021: For Limbing & Home UseGreenWorks 20222 Greenworks 14-Inch 9-Amp Corded Chainsaw
  • Weight: 8 lbs
  • Bar Length: 14 inches
  • Warranty: 4 years
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ECHO CS-271T 12 In. Chainsaw - The Best Small Chainsaws in 2021: For Limbing & Home UseECHO CS-271T 12 In. Chainsaw
  • Weight: 11 pounds
  • Bar Length: 12 inches
  • Warranty: Limited 5 year
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Makita UC3551A 14 Electric Chain Saw - The Best Small Chainsaws in 2021: For Limbing & Home UseMakita UC3551A 14 Electric Chain Saw
  • Weight: 15 lbs
  • Bar Length: 14 inches
  • Warranty: 1 year
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Why You Can Trust Us

Here at Backyard Boss, we know how helpful chainsaws are and that they can speed up your work significantly. We work with them regularly, and we constantly broaden our knowledge of their new technologies. We’ve already written the recommendations of the best chainsaw picks and the best cheap chainsaws for those on a budget.

We’ve used the knowledge we gathered over the years, our personal experience with chainsaws, and numerous customer reviews, to create this list of the best small chainsaws available on the market. Read this article carefully and at the end of it, you’ll know which tool is the best for you. 

Best For Battery Operated Power

BLACK+DECKER LCS1020
    What this small saw lacks in size, it makes up for in power. This battery powered saw can take on bigger jobs than you may expect.

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Why We Like It: The BLACK+DECKER LCS1020 may only have a 10-inch bar, but it makes up for its small size in power. 

Although it’s battery-powered, it’s capable of cutting all sorts of things with ease. Just keep in mind that is a smaller machine, so it’s best to tackle tinier things with it or take your time as you work your way through a stump or a large tree. You’re looking at making 9-inch to 10-inch cuts with this chainsaw, but you can also tackle up to 20-inch trees with some experience. 

Like most small chainsaws, this B+D one has a tensioning adjuster that doesn’t require you to go find a tool. Plus, it includes a low kickback chain and bar, which helps mitigate the danger of using a chainsaw. It’s also quieter compared to other chainsaws. Remember that this is a battery-powered machine, so its biggest limitation is the battery charge. Tackling a big job, in that case, can be time-consuming, since you might get around 20 minutes from a single charge.

Who Should Buy It: For those who need a small chainsaw that’s battery-powered and offers the performance of a bigger chainsaw, this product is a good choice.

Best Super Lightweight

Ryobi P546 Cordless Chainsaw
    This super-lightweight, battery operated chainsaw is the perfect tool to carry around the yard when you're pruning trees and tightening up shrubs. If you're a Ryobi fan, batteries for your other tools are compatible with this saw.

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Why We Like It: This lightweight chainsaw is an excellent tool for small jobs around the yard. 

With this tool, there is no need to make sure that you have the right fuel-to-oil mix or if it’s running out of gas halfway through a job. Simply pull the trigger and start making some cuts. If you already have other cordless Ryobi tools, you can use the same battery and charges, since they’re compatible with the saw. 

Who Should Buy It: Do you need a powerful little chainsaw to help you cut down on your woodcutting time? Then add this saw to your collection.

Best Corded

GreenWorks 20222 Greenworks 14-Inch 9-Amp Corded Chainsaw
    Not all small chainsaws are battery powered. This one plugs into a power outlet so your only limitation is the length of your cord.

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Why We Like It:  The GreenWorks 20222 14-inch corded chainsaw uses about 9 amps and relies on electricity to power it. 

One benefit to this power source is that you don’t have to wait for batteries to charge to use it. As long as you have an outlet and a long enough cord, you can keep working. Choosing an electric tool instead of agas means you don’t have to pull any cords to get it started, you just have to press a button. You also get tool-free tension adjustment with an auto oil system to keep your chain and bar lubricated.

Small tree trunks and branches won’t be difficult to cut by this lightweight, easy-to-use small chainsaw. Even if you come to thicker logs, just take your time, and periodically check the chain’s tightness. The tool-free tensioning adjuster makes it easy to do, you just have to turn the knob. To stop the chain just release the trigger.

Perhaps the biggest issue with this chainsaw is that there are reports of the chain slipping off on occasion. Oil leaks are also common. Gladly, this small chainsaw comes with a four-year warranty for such issues.

Who Should Buy It: This small chainsaw is a great option if you’d rather have an electric-powered chainsaw for continuous power. 

Best Gas Powered

ECHO CS-271T 12 In. Chainsaw
    Small chainsaws don't mean you have to choose between electric or battery powered. This gas powered saw can join you out in the field, far away from electricity.

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Why We Like It: If you need a small machine to help you with your work consider this gas-powered chainsaw. 

It’s great for limbing and cleaning up the homestead. This 12-inch chainsaw is lightweight and very easy to start. Its weight allows you to operate it with either hand. 

A full tank isn’t too big but can get you about 45 minutes of runtime. The Echo isn’t the cheapest option, but the price is dictated by the high quality. It’s reliable, durable, and lasts for years with the proper maintenance.

Who Should Buy It: Are you looking for a powerful saw, but don’t want to drag a piece of heavy equipment around your acreage? Then this product is perfect for you.

Best For Comfortable Use

Makita UC3551A
    This small, electric chainsaw is built to last. It costs a bit more than other chainsaws of this size, but it should pass the test of time.

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Why We Like It: This Makita UC3551A is a bit expensive, but can help you speed up your work significantly. 

It is designed to last you a lifetime if you care for it properly. It won’t require the same level of maintenance that a gas-powered chainsaw would, but you must keep it filled with oil, and clean it regularly. Do that and this small chainsaw will reward you with its strong torque and workhorse-like ethic.

It’s sometimes challenging to use, that’s why some owners prefer to just remove the cover and tighten the chain by hand. The soft grip makes for a more comfortable hold on this tool. And the auto oiler keeps the bar and chain lubricated, so they don’t give out.

Who Should Buy It: This is a great chainsaw for those who like to invest in quality tools that will last a lifetime. 

Why Would You Need a Small Chainsaw

A chainsaw is not only a timesaver when it comes to maintaining your property, but it’s also a helpful device to have in an emergency, which is a big selling point when it comes to small chainsaws. Here are a couple of situations you might find yourself in when a chainsaw would be very handy.

A Fallen Tree

Fallen Tree B&W
Karthik Chandran via Unsplash

Say the worst has happened and a tree falls on your house or car. You could call a professional to move the tree and add on to the cost of repairing your property, or you could take out your trusty chainsaw and break down the tree yourself. Even a small chainsaw is going to make this possible but can require some time. 

Overgrown Bushes

A mini or small chainsaw makes quick work of leaves and small branches. It can speed up your work which means you’ll have more time for yourself.

Firewood

An ax is a great tool to have on hand but chopping firewood the old-fashioned way can leave you with aches and pains in muscles. Switch to a small chainsaw and you can have a cord of wood ready to go for when the weather turns.

Home Improvement Projects

All those planks and boards you bought for repairing, replacing, or starting some new home improvement project need to be cut to size. You could do it at the hardware store, or you could do it yourself at home. A saw is great for this application, but a chainsaw is going to be a faster and easier solution.

Limbing

A small chainsaw is going to be perfect for lopping off limbs of trees that have grown a bit too far over your roof or property.

Chainsaw And Felled Tree
Markus Spiske via Unsplash

What Else Do You Need to Buy

Let’s take a look at the accessories that are helpful to have, depending on which chainsaw you choose.

You’re going to need to get some oil for lubricating your chain and a bar. A sharpening tool is also a must-have for any chainsaw to keep the teeth sharp and ready to cut. It’s also important to invest in some safety gear.

Goggles are necessary to keep your eyes safe from any debris. You could opt for some logging boots, but your regular work boots should be fine for around-the-house work. Chaps and gloves are worth getting to keep you safe in case of a kickback. You also should pick out a helmet with a face screen for more protection.

Gas Chainsaw Must-haves

The most important things to have are gas and oil. You’ll have to mix the two and keep your chainsaw fuelled up to work properly.

Electric Chainsaws Must-haves

A long outdoor extension cord will make your life much easier. Buy a long orange one for a farther reach. Consider also getting a generator for projects that are deeper on your property.

Cordless Chainsaws Must-haves

Backup batteries and chargers are a good idea, especially if you use your chainsaw often. Rather than stopping the project and waiting for one battery to recharge, you can just pop a new one in and keep going.

Lumberjack With Chainsaw
Abby Savage via Unsplash

How We Picked

With an enormous variety of tools available on the market, finding the best tool wasn’t easy. However, we decided to look at the three most important categories below. That’s how we were able to narrow down the list to the five best small chainsaws out there.

  • Size.  A 20-inch bar was the upper limit, but we also found excellent chainsaws below that size.
  • Power Source.  It comes down to personal preference and how you plan to use this chainsaw in your day-to-day life. That’s why we included at least one of each power source to give you options.
  • Budget. Price is often the most important feature when making a purchase decision. Because of that, we added a range of prices to fit into most budgets. 

The Final Cut

A small chainsaw isn’t going to replace your big, gas-powered tool that you can use to slice through thick old oak trees. However, it can prune the limbs and branches of that same tree. These are ideal chainsaws for small jobs and home projects. Whether you choose a gas-powered, battery-powered, or electric-powered small chainsaw, it’s going to be a good purchase. These will easily fit in your truck and travel with you to wherever you need to use them.

The best small chainsaw has to be the BLACK+DECKER LCS1020 20V MAX Lithium-Ion Chainsaw, 10″ because of its portability, power, and convenience. There’s little to no maintenance with this small chainsaw, and it’s convenient to have around the house. It can be used to prune trees, bushes, and other small plants. You can also put it to work chopping up wood for your firewood pile. It can be used, in a pinch, for dealing with a fallen tree too. It’s easy to take with you anywhere. 

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