February 13, 2023

What’s the best type of chainsaw for homeowners in 2023 – gas, corded or cordless?

By Lyle Weischwill
Introduction image for article on picking the right type of chainsaw for your home.
Introduction image for article on picking the right type of chainsaw for your home.

Let’s face it – many homeowner’s only need a chainsaw once in a blue moon. At best, those homeowners who use a chainsaw themselves often only use it in late winter or early spring to trim trees.

There are exceptions. If you own property with lots of trees, then you’ll likely need a heavy-duty gas chainsaw with the right features to handle your cutting needs.

Our advice in this article will focus mainly on the needs of homeowner’s with only a few trees that need occasional trimming using a chainsaw.

How much should I spend on a chainsaw?

For most homeowner’s who need a chainsaw occasionally for trimming tree limbs and cutting off fallen branches, the answer to this question is simple – the least amount possible.

The lowest priced chainsaws in 2023 are corded models. These chainsaws have the power that most homeowners need and they start up easily. No fussing with mixing 2-cycle fuel and tugging on a starter cord when you choose an electric model.

Here are 3 examples of corded models that could be good choices for homeowner’s with only occasional needs for a chainsaw:

If you have tall trees in your yard, consider getting an electric pole saw instead of just a regular chainsaw. For versatility, you can find a model with a corded electric chainsaw that you can detach from the pole to cut limbs when a high reach isn’t needed.

Chainsaw Bar & Chain Oil

Don’t forget to buy chain oil when getting your first chainsaw. All chainsaws use chain oil to keep the chain lubricated and cutting smoothly.

Corded chainsaws vs. cordless models

Cordless chainsaws are available at reasonably low prices and current models often have more power than cordless chainsaws offered by manufacturers in previous years. When considering whether to buy a cordless or corded electric chainsaw, consider these factors.


Cordless chainsaws typically cost twice as much as corded models. If you only expect to use the chainsaw once a year or so, consider going with the less expensive alternative – a corded chainsaw.


Cordless chainsaw are more convenient to use because you don’t have to worry about connecting them to an extension cord. If you don’t have an outdoor extension cord that will reach the areas of your lawn where trimming and cutting is needed, then you’ll likely want to choose a cordless chainsaw.

As a trade-off, you will typically sacrifice some power when choosing a cordless chainsaw over a corded model. This gap in power continues to narrow in 2023 but corded chainsaws often have more powerful motors than low-cost cordless models.

Also, you’ll find that chainsaw batteries eventually wear out over time. This can take 5 to 10 years. Replacement batteries can cost nearly as much as buying a new chainsaw. You won’t face this problem if you buy a corded chainsaw.

Consider these factors when choosing an electric chainsaw.


As mentioned above, lower-priced cordless chainsaws often don’t have as powerful motors as corded models. For corded electric chainsaws, you can look at the motor amperage specification to see how powerful the chainsaw will be. For example, the WEN 4017 16" Electric Corded Chainsaw uses a motor rated at 12 amps. That chainsaw will easily cut through most limbs up to 10-inches.

Most cordless chainsaw motors aren’t rated for amperage. You can use battery voltage to compare cordless chainsaw power. A 40-volt cordless chainsaw will be more than twice as powerful as a 20-volt model. The cost of the chainsaw will also go up as battery voltage increases. To buy a low-cost cordless chainsaw, you’ll likely have to settle for a model that will cut 6-inch limbs with about a ½-hour of run time before battery recharge is needed.

If you only need a chainsaw for light to medium trimming, then a 20-volt cordless chainsaw may be right for you.

Gas chainsaw cutting a thick limb

When to buy a gas chainsaw instead of electric

You’ll need a gas chainsaw when you have a large property with lots of thick trees that need regular trimming. Gas chainsaws are much more powerful than most electric models. Gas chainsaws are also available with longer bar lengths to cut thicker trees and limbs.

You’ll also need to maintain the engine on a gas chainsaw. Otherwise, you’ll have to deal with engine starting problems or a rough-running chainsaw engine.

Most gas chainsaws use a 2-cycle engine so you’ll need to keep a good supply of fuel/oil mix handy.

When you’ll be using a gas chainsaw regularly, choose a sturdy model and a brand that offers replacement chains and parts.

The top brands of gas chainsaws in 2023 include:

  • Husqvarna chainsaws

  • Poulan chainsaws

  • McCulloch chainsaws

  • Craftsman chainsaws

For advice on how to keep your gas chainsaw in top shape, visit our Chainsaw DIY Help section.

Choosing the right chainsaw for your home’s needs will save you money and help you complete tree trimming and removal chores quickly and efficiently. When using a chainsaw, always follow the safety instructions in the owner’s manual. For expert advice on chainsaw cutting, read our article How to cut trees, limbs and branches with a chainsaw by Jeff Day.

Symptoms for gas chainsaws

Choose a symptom to see related chainsaw repairs.

Main causes: cracked fuel lines, leaky carburetor seals, damaged fuel tank cap, cracked fuel tank
Main causes: stale gasoline, cracked fuel lines, dirty carburetor, damaged spark plug, worn piston rings
Main causes: bad gas, engine needs tune up, cracked fuel lines, dirty carburetor

Repair guides for gas chainsaws

These step-by-step repair guides will help you safely fix what’s broken on your chainsaw.

February 1, 2014
By Lyle Weischwill
How to rebuild a chainsaw carburetor

If your chainsaw isn't running well, a dirty carburetor could be the problem. You can take it apart, clean it and rebuild it, using a carburetor rebuild kit. This repair guide takes you through the process.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
February 1, 2014
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace chainsaw fuel lines

The fuel line on a chainsaw becomes brittle over time and can crack. Replacing it doesn't require a lot of DYI experience. These instructions show you how.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less
February 1, 2014
By Lyle Weischwill
How to replace a chainsaw carburetor

If the engine won't start even though there's fuel in the chainsaw, the carburetor could be the problem. Sometimes, it's easier to replace the carburetor than to clean it and rebuild it. Follow these steps to do the job yourself in about half an hour.

Repair difficulty
Time required
 15 minutes or less

Articles and videos for gas chainsaws

Use the advice and tips in these articles and videos to get the most out of your chainsaw.

February 13, 2023

What’s the best type of chainsaw for homeowners in 2023 – gas, corded or cordless?

By Lyle Weischwill

Find out what type of chainsaw you need to keep trees trimmed in your yard.

July 12, 2022

What are the most common replacement parts for chainsaws?

By Lyle Weischwill

Learn about the most common replacement parts for chainsaws and how they can help you fix chainsaw problems.

August 1, 2015

How to cut trees, limbs and branches with a chainsaw

By Jeff Day

Learn tips for using a chainsaw to cut down trees, cut up fallen tree limbs and prune small branches.