Home > Home & Garden > Chainsaws > Best Electric Chainsaws

Best Electric Chainsaws

By: Amy Livingston on November 21, 2017

Best Reviewed

Best electric chainsaw

WORX WG304.1

Plugging into the power

Electric chainsaws are lighter and quieter than gas chainsaws, and they require much less maintenance. There's no need to worry about mixing oil and gas, choosing and using the right type of gas, cleaning up after spills or cleaning fouled spark plugs. They are cheaper to buy, too. You do have to haul a heavy-duty extension cord along behind you, but most users who do light work in a relatively small area, within reach of an electrical outlet, say that an electric chainsaw's combination of value, power and quietness is well worth that inconvenience.

Out of all corded electric chainsaws, the WORX WG304.1 (Est. $100) looks to be a standout. This 11.2-pound, 18-inch chainsaw has a powerful 15-amp engine. Consumer Reports says it gets through logs as fast as most light-duty gas saws, though not as fast as a heavy-duty gas-powered saw like the Husqvarna 455 Rancher (Est. $460). It also has a nice range of safety and convenience features, including a chain brake, metal bucking spikes for improved torque, tool-free tensioning, and an automatic oiling mechanism to keep the chain lubed up and running smoothly without interrupting your sawing job. However, unlike the Husqvarna gas saws covered in our gas chainsaws section, it doesn't have specially designed handles to dampen the vibration. WORX backs the saw with a three-year warranty.

Both professional tests and user reviews describe this chainsaw as fast, lightweight, and easy to handle. They also say it's very quiet when idling — though, of course, no chainsaw is quiet when cutting through wood, so ear protection is recommended even with electric models. Another plus compared to some gas models, owners say, is that there are no hassles over starting. They also say maintaining the saw is easy, especially with the help of the tool-free tensioner and self-oiling chain. However, several users warn that the saw goes through oil fast and that the starter tube of chainsaw oil that comes with the saw isn't nearly enough to get you through a day of sawing.

User reviews also caution that this saw has a few quirks to watch out for. Several users say the chain tensioner doesn't work very well, and the chain ends up coming off frequently. We also saw some complaints that the saw tends to leak oil copiously during storage. The biggest problem users have with the WORX saw, however, is the difficulty of getting support for it. Owners say that the WORX helpline has long hold times, and when you finally get through to a representative, they are not always able to provide useful assistance. Worse still, Worx does not sell parts for this or any of it saws – so if the saw breaks once the warranty period is up, there's literally no way to repair it.

If you're willing to sacrifice some power for a chainsaw that's lighter and easier to maneuver, the WORX WG303.1 (Est. $75) is a good choice. It's a bit smaller than the WG304.1, with a 16-inch bar and a weight of 11 pounds, and it has a less powerful 14.5-amp engine. However, reviewers say this doesn't slow it down; Consumer Reports says it's actually a bit faster than its larger cousin, and better balanced as well.

Users at Amazon and Home Depot describe the WORX WG303.1 as fast, lightweight, and quiet, with good safety features. Most users also say it has enough power for their needs, although a few complain that it's a bit feeble. Its weak points are basically the same as the WORX WG304.1's: it runs through oil quickly, it tends to leak during storage, and there's no way to get parts for it. Also, some owners say the kickback brake is too sensitive, and it's easy for users with large hands to trigger it by accident.

If you're looking for a chainsaw mainly to trim dead branches, rather than cut down trees or cut up firewood, the WORK JawSaw WG307 might be the tool for you. This specially designed tool has a steel-toothed "mouth" 4 inches in diameter that you can fit around a branch, either on the ground or on the tree, to hold it securely in place. Then the bar with the chain running extends down like a tongue from the top of the mouth, sawing neatly through everything between the jaws. Users find this tool much safer and easier to use than a standard chainsaw for trimming jobs, but the 4-inch mouth limits the maximum size of branches and trees you can cut with it.

Recently Updated
Chainsaws buying guide

What every best Chainsaws has:

  • A trigger lock.
  • An anti-kickback chain.
  • A chain brake.

Read More »

Learn More »