Factors to Consider in Buying the Right Chainsaw Chain

The chain is one of the most crucial aspects of any chainsaw. If there is any imperfection in the chain or if it is not suited for the job, the chainsaw will not be that useful. Moreover, you need to choose a chain which can easily fit the chainsaw. The tension should be proper along the length. Only then can you use the chainsaw consistently.

If even one of these factors is not up to the mark, it will just degrade the performance of the chainsaw. Hence; you will have to repair and maintain it time and again which will reduce your efficiency. Today, we will share with you six factors which you should consider while choosing the chain for the chainsaw. Once you take these factors into account, it is easy to make the buying decision.
Factors to Consider in Buying the Right Chainsaw Chain

1. Bar Length

The bar length refers to the length of the chainsaw. If you buy the 18 inch chainsaw, it indicates that the bar length of the chainsaw is 18 inches. However, the bar length does not coincide with the exact length of the chainsaw. It is the length from the tip of the bar on the outer side to where it meets the chainsaw case.

Generally speaking, the lengths of the chainsaw are even-numbered. The bar length can vary from 10 inches to 42 inches. The most common chainsaws have a length between 16 inches to 20 inches. You have to take into account the bar length while buying the chain.




2. Choose the chain with the proper pitch

The chain consists of rivets which can hold it in place. When you check out the chainsaw carefully, you will notice that these are visible along the side of the chain. It is essential to measure the distance between these rivets and calculate the pitch. The way to do so is to measure the gap between the center rivet and the third rivet and then divide it by 2. The number which you get is the pitch. When choosing a chain for the chainsaw, it is necessary to select the one with the required pitch.

Doing so will ensure that the chain will remain in place for a long time and you can use the chainsaw at the highest speed setting.
Factors to Consider in Buying the Right Chainsaw Chain - cutting log

3. The gauge of the chain

The gauge of the chain refers to the thickness of the chain. If you want to make sure that it can fit the bar properly, you have to be very specific about the gauge of the chain. If the gauge is proper, the drive lugs will fit into the chain correctly. It will mean that irrespective of the speed at which you are using the chainsaw, the chain will not go loose. That is why; it is essential to choose the chainsaw chain with a precise gauge rating. It is not only safe to do so but also makes the chainsaw reliable.

4. Drive links

Drive links refer to the part of the chain which will fit into the guide bar of the chainsaw. When you’re comparing the different chains, they will specify the number of drive links which they have on offer. If they do not have the number of drive links on display, you can remove the current chain of your chainsaw and count the drive links in them. Once you have the drive link measurement, it is easy to shortlist the right chain.

The drive links will hold the chain securely in its place and ensure that you can use the chainsaw at the highest speed setting. It will help you reduce the time and effort required to cut trees and wooden blocks. If the number of drive links is not accurate, the chain will not correctly fit into the chainsaw. In such a case, you will have no other option but to get it replaced. That is why; you have to choose the chain with the right number of drive links.

Factors to Consider in Buying the Right Chainsaw Chain - chainsaw chain

5. Cutter type

The type of the cutter which the chain has will determine its precision and power to cut through the trees. The cutter type refers to the kind of teeth which the chain has. There are four different types of teeth in these chains. These are:

  • Chipper chains: These chains are the most common type of chains available. They are suitable for thinner branches and limbs.
  • Semi-chisel chains: If you’re looking for a rounded option which will help you cut through soft and hardwood, this is the type of chain which you should purchase. These chains can also deal with heavy duty tasks but the time required will be on the higher side.
  • Full chisel chains: These chains have square shaped teeth. When you’re looking to choose the chainsaw for heavy-duty work, these are the chains which you should buy. They can move through hardwood without any delay. If you’re looking for the chains which are sturdy in construction, you can go with this option.
  • Skip chisel chains: Skip chisel chains are suitable for only specific applications. These come along with fewer teeth. When you’re looking to use a chainsaw which has an extended part, these are the perfect chains. If you’re using the chainsaw for cutting trees with wide bark, you should go with these chains. The distance between the teeth is on the higher side.


The advantage of the skip chisel chains is that the teeth can remain sharp for a long time. It means that you will not have to worry about replacing the chain or sharpening the teeth again and again. You need to understand however that the kickback risk is on the higher side when using the skip chisel chains. That is why only professionals use such chains. Among the four options which we have discussed up until now, the skip chisel chains are the most durable. It is because the teeth can remain sharp for a long time.

When you’re looking to buy the right chain for your chainsaw, it is essential to consider these four options. The cutter type will determine the efficiency with which you can use the chainsaw. It will also determine the kind of wood which you can cut easily. Due to this very reason, it is essential to compare these four options and then choose wisely.

So, if up until now you are confused regarding the right chainsaw chain for your chainsaw, you can use our guide above to make the buying decision. The guide above has been compiled with great care to help you understand the factors which you should consider while buying one. Once you use this guide, it is effortless for you to shortlist the right option. You will not have to spend hours comparing and researching the different chains for your chainsaw. You have to consider the factors above, and it will be easy for you to choose the right chain.



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