Ultimate Guide To Wood Chipper Maintenance

Are you looking for a wood chipper maintenance guide?

Well you’ve come to the right place because that’s exactly what I’ll be going over in this post. I’ll be revealing how to maintain your chipper and keep it working for years to come.

So let’s get straight into it!

How to sharpen and replace wood chipper blades

1. Clean the Air Filter Regularly

Working in dusty environments can be troublesome to your wood chipper’s lifespan. Dust can lead to your machine overheating. Check your air filter regularly before every use to prolong your machine’s life.

2. Sharpen Dull Blades

Maintaining blade sharpness doesn’t only lead to a longer lifespan for your wood chipper, but it also offers a faster turnaround.

3. Change Engine Oil

Changing your engine’s oil is an essential part of maintaining the health of your machine. Old oil heats the engine faster, which will cause overheating issues if it isn’t taken care of.

How to sharpen and replace wood chipper blades

After each use, you should be cautious about the maintenance of your wood chipper. Not paying attention to keeping your chipper well maintained can prove pretty disastrous in many ways. It can lead to unchipped wood pieces or worse, a broken-down machine.

Recommendations on when to change the blades may vary from brand to brand. Some manufacturers recommend changing the blades after 30 hours of usage. Others recommend changing your blades at least once a year.

However, I recommend you check on your wood chippers blades whenever you feel the need to. Manufacturers can only offer recommendations on when to change your blade. It is on you to check if your blades actually need replacing.

If you found any signs of wear on the blades and are ready to sharpen or replace them, you’re first going to need to remove the blades from the machine. Always consult your chipper’s manual for any details that you may not see in this guide before you start maintenance.

Tools needed

Below I will list some tools that you will need to start this process:

  • Safety glasses and gloves
  • Wrench or socket wrench
  • Torque wrench
  • Impact Driver
  • Sharpening tools (sander, grinder, whetstone, file)

Removing the Blade

To begin this process, you first want to check if your machine is still plugged in. Safety when handling these kinds of machines should remain your top priority. If it’s plugged in, make sure to unplug the cord or disconnect the spark plug in your gas chipper.

For those of you who have a chipper shredder, you have to remove the hopper. Loosen the bolts holding it in place. After removal, you should have access to the chipper blades.

Next, you want to remove the housing. The housing is a protective metal case surrounding the rotor assembly.

Use the appropriately sized socket wrench to loosen the nuts around the perimeter of the housing.

After loosening the nuts put the housing aside and now you should have access to the rotor assembly.

With access to the blades, you’ll need to loosen the bolts that are securing the blade. This can be done using a hex key or an Allen wrench.

Finally, the part you’ve been waiting for, removing the blade. Caution should be taken, however dull the blade may be, it can still slice through the skin.

Make sure to wear an appropriate set of safety gloves and grab the blades by the sides.

Sharpening the Blades

For those of you who want to sharpen your blades, there comes a small catch.

Frequently inspecting and sharpening your chipper blades will save you a lot of money in the long run as well as prolong the lifespan of your machine.

Maintaining the blade angle that your manufacturer recommends can be done in different ways.

Below I’ll list some of the common tools used to sharpen your chipper blades.

  • Disc Sander

To begin sharpening using this method, pass the disc sander across the beveled edges of your blades. This should be done in quick and short strokes.

  • Wet Wheel Grinder

Wet wheel grinders hold several advantages over disc sanders. They have their built-in vice to hold your blades, a water well that keeps the whetstone cool and a guide to help set and maintain the sharpening angle.

I still recommend you sharpen the blades using quick and short strokes even with the wet wheel grinder.

  • Belt Sander

These are often used in more professional settings. They work similarly to the disc sanding process. The blades are the object that you’ll have to hold steady while the belt sander is stationary.

To keep your blades steady, place them in a chisel guide. With the blade in the guide, hold the blade upturned so that the blade is in the same direction as the sanding surface.

Replace the Wood Chipper Blade

If no amount of sharpening seems to work, then it might be the time to replace your wood chipper blade. This task is as easy as sharpening the blade. The process is working the same way, just in reverse order.

All you’ll need to know the type of blades that your wood chipper requires and you are ready to go. Before attaching the new blade, clean the area thoroughly.

How long do wood chipper blades last?

This is a very hard question to answer because the wood chipper’s usage varies from user to user. Some people will use the machine more often than you do.

The quality of the blades is also an issue that should be taken into consideration. Some blades may have arrived in worse conditions than others.

As a general rule of thumb, wood chipper blades should last 50 hours of usage. However, you should still regularly check the blade yourself for any dullness.

Should I use a chipper repair service?

If you don’t want to do the maintenance and care of your wood chipper yourself, then there is an alternate solution. Yes, I am talking about hiring a professional to do it for you. But the question is, is hiring a wood chipper repair service worth it?


So those were the best tips for maintaining your wood chipper.

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

Happy chipping!

– Adam