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Chainsaw Buying Guide: Petrol vs. Electric – Making the Right Choice

Tips & Advice

Chainsaw Buying Guide: Petrol vs. Electric – Making the Right Choice

Chainsaws have become indispensable tools for both professionals and homeowners alike, simplifying tasks that would otherwise be time-consuming and labour-intensive. With advancements in technology, the market now offers two primary types of chainsaws: petrol-powered and electric-powered. Each comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages, making the choice between them a crucial decision. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the pros and cons of both petrol and electric chainsaws, helping you make an informed decision based on your specific needs.

Petrol Chainsaws: Power and Portability

Powerful Performance

Petrol chainsaws are renowned for their raw power, making them ideal for heavy-duty tasks such as felling large trees and cutting through thick logs. They are often the preferred choice for professional loggers and forestry workers due to their high horsepower and cutting speed.


Petrol chainsaws offer unparalleled portability as they operate without the need for a power outlet. This makes them perfect for remote locations where access to electricity is limited or non-existent. With a petrol chainsaw, you can carry out your tasks without being tethered to a power source.

Extended Usage

Petrol chainsaws typically have longer run times compared to their electric counterparts. This means you can work for extended periods without interruptions, making them suitable for large-scale projects.


Petrol chainsaws require regular maintenance, including oil changes, air filter cleaning, and spark plug replacement. Additionally, they emit exhaust fumes, so proper ventilation is essential when using them in enclosed spaces.

Electric Chainsaws: Convenience and Eco-Friendliness

Ease of Use

Electric chainsaws are incredibly easy to start and operate. With just a push of a button, you can get them running, eliminating the hassle associated with pulling a recoil cord, as is the case with petrol chainsaws. They are also lighter, making them more manoeuvrable and suitable for beginners.

Quiet Operation

Unlike petrol chainsaws, electric models operate quietly, reducing noise pollution in your surroundings. This makes them an excellent choice for residential areas where noise restrictions may apply, allowing you to work without disturbing your neighbours.

Environmentally Friendly

Electric chainsaws produce zero emissions, making them an eco-friendly option. They are perfect for environmentally conscious individuals who want to minimise their carbon footprint while carrying out their tasks.

Low Maintenance

Electric chainsaws require minimal maintenance compared to petrol chainsaws. There are no fuel or oil changes necessary, and they don’t have spark plugs or air filters to replace. This translates to cost savings and less time spent on upkeep.

When deciding between a petrol and electric chainsaw, it's crucial to assess your specific needs. Consider the scale of your projects; if you're dealing with heavy-duty tasks like felling large trees, a petrol chainsaw's power might be necessary. For lighter home tasks, an electric chainsaw could suffice, often being more budget-friendly upfront. Think about your budget constraints and long-term savings, as electric models are generally more affordable. Additionally, weigh the importance of portability (offered by petrol chainsaws) against the convenience of electric models, especially if you're working in residential areas with noise restrictions. Regardless of your choice, prioritise safety by investing in proper gear and following the manufacturer's guidelines for operation and maintenance.