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best professional chainsaw

The Top 7 Best Professional Chainsaw Models Reviewed

This post was updated on: April 1, 2021

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If your profession requires the regular use of a saw, you’ll want the best professional chainsaw available today. Your choice will largely depend on the type of work you do and the typical timber or wood you’re going to cut.

Fear not! This guide will tell you all about the seven best professional chainsaws available today.

7 Best Professional Chainsaw Models

Husqvarna 20-Inch 460 Rancher Gas Chainsaw: Best Overall Pick

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Key Takeaways

Power and Performance

If you want the best professional chainsaw for your work, the Husqvarna 460 Rancher is the model to go with.

This 20-inch bar Husqvarna chainsaw is built for heavy-duty cutting of large trees for a sawmill. Rest assured that it has enough power to surpass any other model in this guide.

Even so, its X-Torq technology is built with a 3.65 HP and 60 cc monster of an engine that will give you enough for operating its 60.96 cm or 24-inch bar and chain in the most challenging situations. This is the Michael Jordan of professional chainsaws.

Design and Added Features

Everything is built in a sleek and balanced design weighing only 12.8 pounds or 5.81 kg. It also has a full control choke, and spring assisted Air Purge Smart Start Technology.

Some of its comfort and safety features include the LowVib Technology and lower noise levels, which measure at only 104 dB.

Finally, the Husqvarna 460 also has a centrifugal air cleaning system that filters out and stops any massive debris and sawdust from clogging the air filter. This will help to prolong its engine life and lessen the maintenance required for its upkeep.

Is This the Best Chainsaw for You?

The Husqvarna 460 Rancher Gas Chainsaws’ features and specs are perfect for anyone who frequently involves in heavy-duty work.

All of its safety features, combined with its comfortable design, will allow you to use this professional grade saw for hours without getting tired and without the tool failing on your mid-task.

Husqvarna 450E II 20-inch Fully Assembled Gas Chainsaw: Best Value Pick

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Key Takeaways

Power and Performance

If you are someone who regularly does heavy-duty work, the Husqvarna 450E is heaven.

Also, its 20-inch bar length is powered by a robust 50.22 cc engine that you can depend on during the operation. The Husqvarna 450E is a compelling professional chainsaw for all-around use since it will not unnecessarily tire you out when you have to use it all day.

With its Smart Start technology, you can quickly get this up and running without wasting time pulling on a starter cord.

This Husky model’s engine’s high horsepower includes their X-Torq Technology, which supplies you with plenty of raw power.

Design and Added Features

Due to the fact of its efficient fuel consumption and lowered exhaust emissions,  it becomes environmentally-friendly. Like the Husqvarna 460, it also features technology to protect its air filter.

Despite its size and power, the Husqvarna 450E is pretty lightweight at just 11.3 pounds or 5.1 kg. It is also equipped with LowVibe technology to make it easier and more comfortable to use.

Is This the Best Chainsaw for You?

Despite its smaller size and bar length, this Husqvarna saw is a professional-grade chainsaw that is capable of heavy-duty work even in the toughest situations.

If you need a smaller and lighter saw that is still capable of the most difficult of cutting tasks, the Husqvarna 450E is the most suitable model for you.

Moreover, its excellent value makes this a compelling choice, as long as you are comfortable with the manual chain tensioning system.

Remington RM4618 Outlaw: Best Budget Pick

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Key Takeaways

Power and Performance

If you need a professional saw, but you do not have a lot of cash to spend on one, this Remington saw model might be the perfect one for you. Actually, the 46 cc full crank 2 cycle engine, which uses 2-stroke fuel, is more than enough to operate its 18-inch bar length.

Despite its low price, this saw has a well-powered engine, is easy to start, has low vibrations, and a reasonable weight. Its highlight is the 5-point anti-vibration system that will keep you comfortable and safe.

The 18-inch bar is equipped with a low kickback chain and built into a durable die-cast chassis.

Design and Added Features

The Remington RM4618 Outlaw is a gas-powered chainsaw with a fantastic automatic oiler. This allows you to get very clean cuts as you do your saw work.

The chassis uses a very comfortable cushioned handle, a unique feature that is not common in the best professional chainsaws.

Is This the Best Chainsaw for You?

If you typically engage in medium-duty saw work or need a reliable and powerful saw, the RM4618 is something you should consider.

If you are on a budget, there is no better model to get. Still, be prepared for some compromises due to its price.

Husqvarna 455 Rancher Gas-Powered Chainsaw

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Key Takeaways

Power and Performance

The Husqvarna 455 Rancher is a robust choice for doing heavy-duty work.

Its X-Torq technology is built into the 3.5 HP 55.5 cc engine to give you a lot of power and torque to operate its 20-inch chain bar without stalling issues. This is the same technology that uses 2 stroke fuel efficiency and lowers its emissions and harmful chemicals.

Design and Added Features

Given that it has a strong 3.5 HP and 20 inches or 50.8 cm bar length, the Husqvarna 455 Rancher is lightweight at just 12.8 lbs. or 5.81 kg. Then, it has LowVib technology and a lower noise level at just 104 dB.

Furthermore, it is compliant with the California Air Resources Board (CARB), which makes it environmentally-friendly.

Aside from that, this 455 Rancher is less harmful to use during long workdays. And of course, it would be better if you always don’t forget to wear ear protection!

The power is housed in a sleek and balanced design weighing only 12.8 pounds. You will not waste time starting this up because it has a full control choke and spring assisted Smart Start technology.

Above all, this Husqvarna 455 chainsaw is well-powered, comfortable to start, quieter than others, and has a low vibration. It is also lightweight and well-balanced to lessen fatigue during long days of work.

Is This the Best Chainsaw for You?

If you need a powerful saw that can deliver reliable performance without tiring you throughout the day, you should consider the Husqvarna 455 Rancher.

On a different story, if you are mainly concerned with the environment, it’s not a problem. The Husqvarna 455 is also CARB-compliant!

Craftsman CMXGSAMY426S

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Key Takeaways

Power and Performance

With a powerful 46 cc engine, this 20-inch bar and chain model can easily cut through any obstacle in your garden or yard. It will let you work more efficiently and with more speed.

Its fantastic stuck in the system uses a spring-assisted starter to reduce the amount of power needed to start up the engine.

Design and Added Features

This Craftsman model can stand up to the most rugged of workloads. Its 20-inch bar and chain can chew through rigid tree bark.

It also includes a 5-point anti-vibration system that will be easier on your hand and let you work for longer stretches.

A standard side-screwed tension system can easily be accessed to properly tension your chain for even more convenience.

This saw is so reliable that you can trust this with any work, even if you do it all day. To assure you, even more, it is backed by a two-year limited warranty.

Is This the Best Chainsaw for You?

If you want the best professional chainsaw that is lightweight, efficient, and environmentally friendly, the Craftsman is a great model to consider. It removes the need to deal with money and is an excellent value saw.

Echo CS-590 20-inch Timber Wolf Chainsaw

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Key Takeaways

Power and Performance

The Echo CS-590 20-inch bar Timber Wolf Chainsaw can hold its own against the other models here with its 3.89 HP power output.

Featuring an easy start and plenty of power, the Echo CS-590 chainsaw will not wear you out during a full day’s work. This is because it’s lightweight at just 13 pounds.

The standout feature is the 59.88cc and 3.89HP engine designed to provide enough power for its default 20-inch bar and also for a 24-inch and 27-inch bar and chain.

Design and Added Features

With a bar length of 20 inches or 50.8 cm and a weight of 13 lbs or 5.9 kg, the Timber Wolf is easy to control.

You can possibly expect an easy start every time you use this chainsaw with its fully controlled choke and a decompression valve for easy pulling. The Echo CS-590 can handle all kinds of heavy-duty work without any trouble. Just like all other gas chainsaws, it also uses 2 stroke fuel.

Is This the Best Chainsaw for You?

If you typically engage in heavy-duty work and require the versatility of switching your bar and chain from a shorter 20-inch one for branches and thinner wood to a 24-inch bar for more robust trees and even up to 27-inch for those stubborn logs, the Timber Wolf is the best choice for you.

Because of its reliability and flexibility, it will allow you to work all day.

Poulan Pro PR5020 Gas-Powered Chainsaw

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Key Takeaways

Power and Performance

The PR5020 chainsaw is equipped with a 20-inch guide bar and a massive 50 cc engine size that powers everything.

This is one precessional-grade model built for felling trees, bucking trunks, and splitting firewood. Despite its power, it comes at a pretty reasonable price and low weight of 13 lbs and a low noise level of just 102 dB.

The Special OxyPower Engine Technology allows you to save money long term because it creates 70% fewer emissions and 20% lower fuel consumption than other gas chainsaws.

Because the emissions are lower, the air you breathe in will also be cleaner, allowing you to breathe more easily and avoid adverse long-term effects of inhaling all those fumes.

As a plus, it helps to filter air out more efficiently, lessening the time and effort required to clean it!

Design and Added Features

The Poulan Pro PR5020 includes an Inertia-Activated Chain Brake to keep you safe. It also has an effortless pull starting system and a protected purge bulb that reduces the pull force you will need to use by as much as 30%.

Note that its Side-Mounted Chain Tensioning System requires a unique tool (known as a scrench) for quick chain adjustments. However, it will not be challenging to do that because this system is integrated into its rear handle.

It features an Automatic (Fixed Flow) Oiler to keep your gas-powered chainsaw well-lubricated.

Finally, it has a user-friendly combination choke/stop control that allows you to start these gas chainsaws faster and lowering the risk of engine flooding.

Is This the Best Chainsaw for You?

Despite some of its flaws, reviews by users have praised this gas-powered chainsaw for its excellent value. This is the best chainsaw for you if you want excellent value for your money and need a reliable chainsaw.

What to Consider When Buying Your Own Professional Chainsaw

Manufacturer’s Design and Engineering

Chainsaw Size

You need to consider two main factors when determining the proper size of a chainsaw for you. Initially is the bar length, and lastly is the overall weight.

For more information, we’ll take a closer look at each of these considerations below to guide you in making a perfect choice.

Bar Length

When it comes to the bar length of any chainsaw, the general rule is you need to determine the most oversized diameter of large trees, timber, logs, or branches that you will be cutting. Then, add about 2 inches to that bar length.

In this case, it is useful to overestimate. Bear in mind that saws with a longer bar will require a heavier engine to operate.

Moreover, the longer the bar length, the harder it is to control the chainsaw and the greater the risk of injuring yourself.

This is because the chainsaw becomes unbalanced or front-heavy, and fatigue becomes a significant factor, as the chainsaw will feel heavier the longer you hold and use it.

Overall Weight

The overall weight of one chainsaw will differ from one model to another, depending on the materials used in the saw’s build and the engine’s size required to power the chainsaw.

A saw that uses a longer bar will be heavier. You need a bigger engine to operate a longer bar. This also adds some weight. So, keep this consideration in mind when you choose your chainsaw model.

Comfort and Ergonomic Design

Considering how many components a chainsaw is made of, the size and materials used, and the robust engines they typically use, you probably think a professional chainsaw has to weigh a ton.

For any professional that has to work with a saw for extended amounts of time, comfort is a primary consideration when choosing what saw to purchase.

That’s why manufacturers specifically designed professional chainsaws to be made with durable but lightweight materials. To find the most comfortable chainsaw for prolonged use, we suggest following the tips below:

  1. Choose a chainsaw that has a high power to weight ratio. This means that the weight of the saw and the power of the engine should be balanced. There is no sense in getting a heavy chainsaw that can deliver little power.
  2. Get a chainsaw that has a long and narrow design. This provides a better balance for the distribution of the force and power of the saw. Moreover, it will feel lighter. Do not get front-heavy saws that will drag the chainsaw down and require more muscle-power from you to carry.
  3. Look at how the handles are shaped. Some design handles feel better when you hold the chainsaw. Specialized grips, such as those made with rubber, help you hold the chainsaw firmly and make them a bit softer and more comfortable to grip.

Whether You Have to Mix Fuel

The majority of gas chainsaws will require 2-cycle fuel, a combination of gasoline and special 2-cycle fuel oil.

This mixture can change, depending on the manufacturer. For that, you need to read the specifications for the fuel mixture that come with your professional chainsaw.

Usually, this is the main advantage of electric chainsaws, which do not require you to mix your fuel for your saw.

Chainsaw Performance

Ease of Start-Up

If you have ever used a chainsaw or asked your friends about it, one of the most talked-about topics is how easy it is to start up.

A chainsaw that is easy to start is drastically more valuable than other saws. In general, using a chainsaw requires frequent starts and stops throughout the day.

You will want to spend your time cutting instead of wasting it on starting your saw. Here are some of the features you need to check for an easy starting saw:

  1. Spring Assisted Start – Several manufacturers have an extra spring between the start cord and the crankshaft. This results in requiring less pulling force to get the engine to turn over and start.
  2. Choke Control – The worst thing that can happen to you is when too much gas gets into the carburetor when your chainsaw chokes. Several manufacturers have choke control, which prevents you from accidentally flooding the carburetor.

The engine of electric chainsaws is easier to start. Some even have simple push buttons and digital displays.

Nonetheless, this compromises the workload they can handle, which is more limited than gas-powered professional chainsaws.

Engine Power

The most important part of a chainsaw is its power, which is delivered by its engine. The more power your chainsaw has, the more capabilities it has to handle challenging and demanding jobs.

Particularly when dealing with challenging and thick woods that require massive amounts of engine power and torque that only a professional chainsaw can deliver.

An obvious choice to make is to go for a gas-powered chainsaw, as they produce the most power out of all the types of chainsaw. This gives you the versatility to handle both hard and softwood types like a hot knife through butter.

On the other hand, if your professional field involves landscaping and gardening, you don’t want the high noise levels common to all gas-powered chainsaws.

A quiet option is ideal not to disturb your employers and/or neighbors. You will want a balance of low noise levels, excellent control, accuracy, and precision in one professional chainsaw.

In that case, an electric or battery-operated chainsaw would be the better option for you. While they may not be capable of handling thick hardwood, they are more than able to keep up with your landscaping and gardening work.

They can still cut through thick wood and any other task you may require when beautifying your yard. You need to remember to bring a suitable extension cord with you to supply power from anywhere in the house, garden, or garage for corded electric saws.

Battery-powered chainsaws are also excellent if you work in different houses or changing locations. Still, you may be limited by the short battery life unless you bring spare batteries with you.

Depth of Cut

An excellent way to determine how deep or how much wood a chainsaw can cut off is by checking its chain bar. 

The chain bar is the part of the saw that points out of the engine. It is made of hardened steel and is where the chain is mounted to keep it in place.

The longer the bar length is, the longer the chain it can accommodate. In return, this translates to a better ability to cut thicker trees.

Once you have a good idea of how thick a tree you are going to cut is, or the usual thickness and hardness of trees you will deal with most of the time have, you can look for a professional saw that has the right bar length or can be fitted with one that is the right size for you.

You should purchase a professional saw that can be equipped with longer chain bars, other than the stock parts that come with your chainsaw by default.

As a result, you and your tool can be flexible and adjusted according to the job at hand.

In order to ensure your chainsaw will last, it is essential that your chain bar is relative to a tree’s thickness. So you do not tire yourself out too much while using your tool.

Cutting Speed

Time is money. For professionals, this means that the faster you can get your job done, the better.

While many of the chainsaws available in the market can get the job done over extended periods, you should still consider how quickly it can get the job done.

One thing that is related to and will impact your cutting speed is how sharp the chain is.

A sharp and professional chainsaw equates to a faster cutting speed, as it can go through wood more easily. This means that you should also invest in a good chain sharpener to maintain this sharpness.

Chainsaw Features

Chain Tensioning System

Bear in mind, you need to keep your professional chainsaw properly tensioned to keep it operating at the optimum level.

You will have to do this regularly while you are working, so having a chainsaw with an easy tensioning system will save you a lot of time and frustration.

  1. Tool-less Chain Tensioning – These chainsaws let you tension your chain without needing other tools. On top-tier models, these systems work well. If you buy one of the cheaper models, stay away from this feature as they can be finicky.
  2. Tooled Chain Tensioning – You will need a wrench to loosen the nuts on the chain bar and a screwdriver to tighten the tension. Saws with this feature generally come with a wrench for this. While it is more troublesome, it is not overly challenging to do.

Chain Brake

The chain brake is an instant emergency stopping feature. They can either be manual or automatic, which is activated by inertia. We recommend prioritizing this feature, even if it costs extra.

Chain Stoppers

The chain stoppers, also known as chain catchers, are metal or plastic guards designed to intercept a derailed or broken chain. In that event, the chain should just hit the chain stopper instead of your hand. These are mandatory on every chainsaw.

Low Kickback

A chainsaw’s kickback can be very dangerous if you do not expect it or cannot control it. In truth, this is the most common cause of chainsaw injuries.

With kickback, the chain stops suddenly, and the force which was then being applied to cutting the wood becomes redirected and reversed back into the chain bar. This forces the blade out of the wood and towards the operator.

In other words, the kickback can throw the blade towards you or, worse, into you.

This is even more dangerous in professional chainsaws, which have a lot of power and torque. The more powerful the machine is, the worse your mishandling injury can be.

To avoid this, you should look for a professional chainsaw that uses low kickback technology. It must either have a low kickback chain or a low kickback guide bar, better yet, both.

User Experience

Vibration Reduction

The chainsaw vibrations are pretty hard to get rid of, considering what they do and how much power is in them.

Even when your professional chainsaw is appropriately tensioned and well-lubricated, you should expect some kind of vibration to come through still.

Furthermore, the vibration reduction technology is designed to reduce the stress that long-term chainsaw use may cause while also giving you a more secure hold on the saw.

Some of the adverse effects of constant vibrations from power tools include tingling in your fingers and arms, losing grip strength, losing light touch, and more. So, it is in your best interest to consider a chainsaw with vibration reduction features.

Most chainsaw manufacturers who have this feature built-in their professional chainsaws typically use springs or rubber in the handles or handle mounting.

Noise Level

The chainsaws are well-known for their loud noise production. This is especially true for gas-powered professional chainsaws.

Studies have shown that gas-powered saws can make noises range from 106 to 117 decibels in the operator’s ear.

In fact, the electric chainsaws, excluding battery-powered models, produce noises that range from 90 to 102 decibels. That is a huge difference.

We recommend checking the dB ratings of the chainsaw model you are looking to buy before making that purchase. No matter what, you should always wear ear protection.

Doing these two things will prevent hearing damage and hearing loss, which you will surely be grateful for in the future.

Ease of Maintenance

Considering how expensive a professional chainsaw is, we know you want one that will last a lifetime.

As with any incredible power tool, the constant use can quickly wear out your beloved machine. With continuous maintenance and servicing, you can keep your professional chainsaw in excellent condition and tip-top shape.

Many people want the benefits of a power tool without having to provide constant attention and care to maintain its performance.

The great news is that there are low maintenance professional chainsaws available today. In short, it will be less time cleaning and oiling but more time cutting!

You should be on the lookout for chainsaw models that can be disassembled with ease and reassembled in one go.

Make sure to clean out the air filter regularly. The sooner you are done cleaning your power tool, the faster you can get back to the work you love doing.

This only goes into the ease of maintenance of the chainsaw itself. The chain you use has to be sharpened regularly to keep it sharp.

The more you use the chain, the more routine sharpening it will require.

The Verdict: Our Top Picks

Husqvarna 20-Inch 460 Rancher Gas Chainsaw: Best Overall Pick

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Key Takeaways

The Husqvarna 460 Rancher is the best and most powerful professional chainsaw on the market. Its engine and features are designed to provide enough power for heavy-duty cutting and all-day work.

Despite that, this lightweight gas-powered chainsaw is environmentally friendly and has an abundance of safety features that will leave you feeling secure and satisfied while finishing your job.

Husqvarna 450E II Fully Assembled Gas Chainsaw: Best Value Pick

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Key Takeaways

Despite being the smaller of the Husky models reviewed in this list, the 450E packs a lot of punch and has the same features as its more expensive brothers.

If you do not need the most powerful engine but still require a 20-inch bar and robust motor, the Husqvarna 450E offers you the best value.

Remington RM4618 Outlaw: Best Budget Pick

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Key Takeaways

The RM4618 may be the cheapest model in this review, but that couldn’t have fooled anyone.

Whatever its price, it still houses a powerful engine, ergonomic design, an abundance of safety features, low vibration, and reduced noise levels.

If you are running on a tight budget but need a professional chainsaw, you cannot get better than this.

Conclusion

The top-tier professional chainsaws should be feature-rich, safe, comfortable, durable, dependable, and powerful.

For the most part, it is a good thing that every one of the models we featured here ticks all of these boxes. We are confident that you will discover the perfect chainsaw for you in this guide!

Check my other chainsaw reviews

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