A chainsaw is a versatile device to use and it needs to be in proper condition always to work perfectly and not give its owner any headache.You goal must always be to get the best out of your machine not the most.
You don’t want to misuse your machine as that might lead you to the market shortly after you’ve bought a chainsaw. So, use your chainsaw as nicely as possible.
Tightening Chainsaw Chain
It is made to work and it will work for you but exploiting (misusing) it will have consequences. So, let us now talk about the chains of the chainsaws and tightening them.
A perfectly tensed chain helps chainsaw work faster and efficiently and also lets the user get the least fatigue. If the chain is too loose, there can be trouble.
Sometimes, the chainsaw might stop working because a loose chain will not be providing enough torque as is required to cut the wood. Other times, the chain might come off the bar and injure the operator.
Whereas, a too tight chain will cause too much pressure on the chainsaw and it might stop working. If the chain is too tight, the engine will have to spend too much power on moving it which will directly affect chainsaw’s engine and its efficiency.
Some chainsaws feature automatic chain tensioning systems. In case of such systems, all you need to do is let the chainsaw do its work by itself and stand on a side.
The chainsaw will automatically tighten the chainsaw and ease the trouble out for you. So, that makes it easy to tense the chain because the automatic tensioning system will produce as much tension as is required.
Most of the chainsaws don’t feature automatic tensioning systems, so one has to manually perform the task. Manually tensioning the chain can go wrong at times if the operator is not well-practiced.
Tightening the chain too much will put unwanted pressure on both the chainsaw and the chain i.e. the chain might break or the engine might heat up too much. Either way, it’ll affect the efficiency of the machine.
Second, if you tighten the chain but still it’s left lose, you won’t get efficiency in work and you’ll be left with dissatisfaction.
Tensioning the chain is not a hard task to perform as such. All you need is a bit of practice. You might screw it the first time you try it but you’ll surely get it once you’ve repeated it several times. But to perform such a task, you should have someone to guide you. Guidance always leads to good work.
Following is the Two ways as to how you can manually tighten the chain of your chainsaw:
Perform the Snap Test:
This is one of the most common ways to see if the chain needs tensioning. With the ‘Snap Test’, you can find out in a second if your chainsaw’s chain requires to be tightened.
To perform the snap test, unplug the spark plug lead of the chainsaw. Now, grab the chainsaw in your hands and grasp the chain with two fingers. Make sure, you grasp the chain from the center and that it is the top side you’re aiming at. Now, lift the chain a bit with the help of your fingers.
After you’ve lifted the chain, the first thing you’ll need to consider is how hard it is to lift the chain. If the chain is loose, it’ll be hard to lift it and vice versa. But, that can be a poor standard to judge the chain’s tension.
Anyways, after you’ve lifted the chain, release it and see how quickly it gets back to its position. A tight chain will instantly get back to its position and that’s an indication of the fact the chain is perfectly tight and doesn’t need to be tightened.
After you’ve performed the snap test, you’ll definitely know if your chain needs to be tightened. If the chain needs tightening, perform the following steps to tighten the chainsaw
Adjust the Bar:
In order to increase the tension of the chain, the bar of the chainsaw is to be adjusted outward. Most of the times, the chainsaws come with wrenches/screwdrivers which are specifically for this purpose. Some chainsaws might not. Anyway, a screwdriver can be managed.
There are several ways to increase chain-tension because, for different chainsaws, they differ. But, most of the times, the same steps are repeated and they’re mentioned here.
- Place the chainsaw on a flat surface as that’ll make it easy to perform the task.
- Unplug the spark plug lead.
- The clutch cover nuts are to be loosened next. (They hold the bar firmly in place.)
- With the help of a wrench or a screwdriver, turn the chain tension up (clockwise) and keep doing it until the chain is properly tense. Don’t forget to hold the nose of the bar slightly up while doing all of this. Chain tension screws are mostly located on the top or side of the chainsaw but you can figure that out.
- Screw clutch cover nuts back to their place and that’s about it.
Here, we’d like to mention that you need to be prepared for any unexpected incident. Sometimes, your chainsaw might meet an accident and sometimes some other things might happen. To tackle with any unexpected situation, be prepared and ready always.
One such thing to do would be to keep a wrench or combination screw driver with you always. The chainsaw can go lose any time depending on the kind of wood you’re working with. For example, sometimes the wood might be too old and rigid for the chainsaw and sometimes you might have messed up while already tightening the chainsaw.
If it is the later, the problem will come up shortly after you’ve tightened the chainsaw and if it is the latter, the problem will take time but eventually you’ll have to deal with it. Whatever may come up, you should be ready to tackle with it.