Do Electric Chainsaws Need Oil?
Yes, electric chainsaws require oil to lubricate the chain. Although the motor does not require gas or any fuel additive, the chain will require ‘bar and chain’ oil.
This post includes affiliate links, which means I may earn a commission on purchases made at no additional cost to you.
How do you oil an electric chainsaw?
Adding oil to an electric chainsaw is simple. There is only one cap to find on any electric chainsaw. In this example, the oil reservoir is on the top of the chainsaw. In other chainsaws the cap may be on the side of the machine.
Be sure to keep the chainsaw steady as you add oil so you don’t spill any. Funnels, like these made by Arcan, are great for keeping the oil in the chainsaw.
- SET INCLUDES MULTIPLE SIZES: 2" funnel (3.25" long), 3" funnel (4.25" long), 4" funnel (5" long), and a 5" funnel (6.25" long).
- APPLICATIONS: All-purpose funnels that can be used for both motorcycles and cars for transferring transmission oil, engine oil, and other automotive...
- DURABLE: Made of oil resistant plastic, ideal for use with chemicals, with a flexible design that fits into hard to reach areas.
You should also prepare an area for you to pour in the oil in case of a spill. Bar and chain oil can easily stain concrete and can leave a bare spot in your lawn. Some left over cardboard boxes work very well to absorb the extra oil.
What type of oil do electric chainsaws need?
Electric chainsaws use the same type of bar and chain oil which gas chainsaws use. Using a great quality bar and chain oil will keep the friction low and properly lubricate all the moving parts. The best oil which we’ve found is the bar and chain oil by Husqvarna.
How often do you need to fill up the oil reservoir of electric chainsaws?
You’ll need to fill up the bar and chain oil reservoir prior to every use and periodically check it to make sure it is not empty. A good rule to follow, is to check the oil reservoir when changing batteries. For gas powered chainsaws, the rate of use is usually commensurate with the fuel use.
Your oil use gets more difficult to gauge while using corded chainsaws since you won’t run out of power. A good rule with corded chainsaws is to check the reservoir after every 20 minutes of use. You may find you need to fill it more often based on use.
Can you manually lubricate an electric chainsaw?
Yes, you can manually lubricate an electric chainsaw. As with any cutting tool, you can use a good spray lubricant for temporary lubrication like this one from Ballistol. This is my favorite lubricant for all my tools.
- Since 1904: The Original CLP - Cleans, Lubricates and Protects
- Multi-Purpose: Preserves and protects metal, wood, leather, rubber and plastics
- Lubricates and Cleans: Perfect for lubricating and cleaning tools, knives, marine parts, firearms and just about anything else
However, manual lubrication is very limited and wears out quickly. You’ll need to lubricate much more frequently, as often as every cut. We really do not recommend manual lubrication if your chainsaw has an automatic lubricating mechanism, as with most electric chainsaws on the market today.
If you still decide to use manual lubrication, do not use conventional WD-40. It is not a lubricant despite it seeming like it. The big risk is that your chainsaw will attract dirt and will destroy all the moving parts.
Is bar and chain oil safe?
Bar and chain oil is by no means an oil which you want to eat or ingest. However, the flash point of most bar and chain oils is above 500 degrees F, meaning it is highly unlikely for your chainsaw to catch fire due to heating the lubricating oil.
What happens if you don’t lubricate a chainsaw?
The first thing to give out is the chain. Quickly changing shape, due to the circular track, places a lot of stress on the chain. It is very likely that the chain will bind and not be able easily glide on the track.
Next, there will be lots of friction between the chain and the guide bar. This can cause permanent damage to the bar due to heat deformation. Remember that all the guide bars are precisely machined to fit a certain thickness chain, if you manage to damage that guide rail you will not be able to use that bar and will need to replace it.
If it is bad enough, you may see smoke coming from the chainsaw. Poor lubrication will make the engine work harder which can damage the internal components.
Angel is a Cuban immigrant who grew up with backyard chickens and a yard-loving abuela. He is our “gear guy” who can never have too many pairs of gloves or weed whacker attachments.