How to Clean a Chainsaw

From professional contractors to homeowners, chainsaws have been an essential tool for cutting down any wood. Whether you regularly use a chainsaw or just on occasion, it needs to be properly cleaned to keep it as sharp and effective as possible. Not only does this maintain the quality of the product but it also reduces the chances of accidental injuries due to poor maintenance.

If you know how to clean a chainsaw, you will save money in the long run. After all, excellent chainsaw maintenance can easily remove the need to pay for repairs and replacement parts. With that in mind, check out our handy guide on cleaning the various parts of a chainsaw below.​


1. Chain

This is arguably the most crucial part of the cleaning process. If you do not clean this well, the chainsaw can have accidental kickbacks that can cause some serious injuries during operations.

To clean the chain, you have to put it in a stable position. If the chainsaw you have is an electric type, you also have to be certain that it isn’t currently connected to any power outlet. Next, you should separate the chain from the saw. Find the knob that’s responsible for tightening the slack and loosen it enough for you to slowly but surely pull the chain away from the bar.

Once the chain has been completely removed, it has to be soaked for about half an hour in a mix of water and cleaner. If you have any household ammonia, you can apply a cup of it for each gallon of water in the mixture.

chainsaw chain

After it has been sufficiently soaked, you should get a bristle brush and scrub the chain. This can take a lot of time and effort, but you need to do this calmly so that every section of the chain is cleaned. Remember to check the entire chain if there are any remaining spots that need cleaning.

The next procedure is to rinse the saw chain with water. Ensure that there is no dirt or other undesirable debris left on the chain. The chain must also be immediately dried to prevent any moisture from coming into contact with it and creating rust.

If the chain has been completely dried, you should then apply oil to it. After all, lubrication is an essential part is maintaining the cutting performance of a chainsaw. With enough oil, friction between the bar and the chain is reduced. This will then enable the blade to spin as fast as it could without generating too much heat.


2. Fuel Tank

The next part you need to clean is the oil or fuel tank. First, use your fingers to pull the fuel filter away from the tank. This filter should then be soaked in a solvent potent enough to dissolve the build-ups of unwanted solid substances.

Likewise, the fuel tank should be emptied of all its contents, especially if the chainsaw has not been utilized for two months or more. Once the tank has been fully emptied, you need to apply a solvent such as acetone, toluene, or a lacquer thinner. Any of these solvents should be strong enough to clean away the gasoline varnish. Lastly, you must rinse the solvent out from the fuel tank by applying kerosene.


3. Spark Plug

To remove the spark plug, the chainsaw needs to be in an upright position. Get a plug spark pull to get the spark plug away from the socket. If you dark and dry deposits located on its electrodes, you can clean them up with a file.

If there are no more brittle substances, you can place it back into the socket. However, you should consider replacing it with a new spark plug if the electrodes have been swamped with these dirty deposits.

This video discusses how to clean a chainsaw:


4. Spark Arrester

Cleaning the spark arrester is important because it prevents exhaust fumes from reaching the muffler. If the muffler becomes clogged with so much exhaust, the chainsaw engine could stop working or overheat.

To clean the spark arrester, you must have a screwdriver to remove the bolts on the muffler containing the spark arrester. Once you see it, apply a brake cleaner to get rid of any deposits. If not all of the deposits are removed, you can pull the spark arrester out and directly clean it with a toothbrush. In case there are still deposits, you must replace it with a new spark arrester.

In conclusion, cleaning a chainsaw will keep not only your saw chains but also your engines in their best condition. The materials needed to clean, such as brushes and screwdrivers, are cheap and easy to find. What matters most is that you follow the instructions and that you do not hasten the process.

If you have any queries, do give us a message.

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About the Author Ann Katelyn

I'm Ann, I have dedicated most of my life in gardening. This is a subject I enjoy the most. Since then, I committed to developing my website to be the best guidance when it comes to taking care of flowers and plants. I am trying my best to be well-versed with plants found in desert areas, tropics or Mediterranean. I still need to be knowledgeable about so many kinds of botanical life.

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