How to Clean an Electric Chainsaw [Step-by-Step Guide]

Do you want to know how to clean an electric chainsaw?

Well, you’ve come to the right place because that’s exactly what I’ll be going over in this post.

So let’s get straight into it!

Benefits of Cleaning Electric Chainsaw

So, what are the benefits of properly maintaining your chainsaw? Maintaining your chainsaw regularly means you ensure you’ll get the best performance. It will also extend your electric chainsaw’s life. 

Now, you may be asking, how often do I have to do this? Is this a daily thing I’ll have to do, or is there a period I should be checking in on my electric chainsaw? I’ll get to that in a second. 

For now, let’s go over the parts of the chainsaw that will need to be cleaned and what you will need to clean them.

Tools Needed to Clean Electric Chainsaw

I’ll start with some general items you’ll need for cleaning:

1. Warm water

2. Universal cleaner

3. Wire brush

4. Grease gun

5. Paintbrush (1” or 2”)

With that out of the way, let’s begin cleaning.

Best way to break in a chainsaw
Should you run a chainsaw at full throttle
Using a chainsaw without a chain brake

Chain and Bar

Safety should always be a priority in anyone’s case. To start, you’ll have to remove the chain and blade. Follow your chainsaw’s manual if it’s your first time doing this. I recommend removing the blade first because of how sharp it is. 

Remember, this machine is made to cut through wood without too much effort. Even when it’s idle, the blade is sharp enough to leave a nasty wound. As always, I recommend wearing some safety gear while doing this.

Now, regarding cleaning these parts, check them thoroughly for any clogged debris or sawdust. The way the blade and chain work, depending on where you’ve bought your chainsaw, the saw will automatically lubricate the blade through some holes in the bar. 

Since this part is in constant contact with the wood, sawdust and debris will build up naturally over time. To clean it out, use a stiff paintbrush. Alternatively, you can use a can of compressed air if you don’t want to come in contact with the blades. 

Use a cloth and warm water to wipe off any grime or dirt on the bar. The chain should be soaked in a solution of household ammonia and water.

Leave it in there for about 10 to 20 minutes. After the time is up, take your wire brush and scrape the blade clean. Always follow safety guidelines when working with ammonia.

Extension Cord

Working with an electric chainsaw means dragging a wire on the floor continuously. Depending on where you live, this means the wire will probably have been dragged through variable conditions. 

It could potentially cause some wear or worse, damage. Check for any exposed wires or areas showing signs of being worn out. If you see any, replace the cord.

Electric Motor (or Powerhead)

The powerhead is what gets the chainsaw running. Ensuring that the powerhead is free of debris or dirt will give you peace of mind when it comes to performance. To clean this part, take a 1” paintbrush and move it along the crankcase area. 

If you have a pick, use it to remove any buildup in the tough to reach spots. A can of compressed air can also be used in this case; just make sure not to use any water when it comes to this part. Water can potentially cause damage here if you’re not careful enough.

To access the air filter, remove the top cover. Then remove the spark plug. Thoroughly check the air filter for any dust. If it isn’t too dirty, all you’ll need is a paint brush to clean the filter. Be careful not to brush too hard, or else you’ll make a hole in the filter. 

If the air filter is filthier than expected, soak it in warm water using soap. After doing this, run it through some clean water without soap and let it dry before you set it back into the powerhead.

Oil Reservoir

As mentioned before, most chainsaws nowadays have an automatic chain bar lubricator. Throughout continuous work, however, the part in charge of this can become clogged with debris, chips, or wood dust. 

In an area with enough lighting, check if the oil reservoir is working properly. Oil splatter should run across the edge of the chain. If this doesn’t occur, it’s time to replace it. Also, make sure to use clean oil.

Wiping the Body

Now, the final process of cleaning your electric chainsaw, wipe the body of any dust or grime. You can do this by using a paintbrush or wire brush. Just make sure not to apply too much pressure as that will leave marks on the body. 

After all is said and done, make sure all the parts are dry and ready to be put back together. Assemble the powerhead back together and mount the bar and chain back. 

Make sure it is all mounted correctly. You should always consult the manufacturer’s manual when doing this to ensure you won’t cause any damage or accidents.

Your chainsaw should be good to go; all you need to do now is refill it with bar oil or gas to start using it again.

Storing the Chainsaw

If you’re not planning on using the chainsaw after maintenance, as you’ll probably be tired like I usually am, then knowing the proper way to store it is essential. 

Store it in a dry and cool place. Make sure to cover the bar with something to prevent rust or accidents.

Maintenance Scheduling

When it comes to scheduling when to clean the chainsaw, it all depends on the parts. For example, you should regularly check the bar to prevent any huge buildups. Parts such as the spark plug or cooling fins require a weekly check. 

What I do recommend, however, is to go through a thorough cleaning every month to ensure you get a longer lifespan out of your chainsaw as well as the best performance possible.

Conclusion

You clean your electric chainsaw by thoroughly removing debris from both the inside and outside. Unclog the grease hole on the nose of the bar to keep it oiling and it’s OK to use a bit of water to help clean your electric chainsaw. 

They’re robust tools and won’t suddenly stop working from a little bit of water.

Hope you found what you were looking for in this post.

Happy sawing!

– Adam