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How Long Do Chainsaw Chains Last?

A chainsaw is a mechanical tool that is powered by an electric or gas engine. This portable mechanical tool allows the user to cut through most materials and especially wood. The chainsaw is traditionally used to cut trees, fell snags, cut firebreaks in the wildland fires, harvest firewood, and many more. The chainsaw has many parts and components, amongst which the chain is one of the most vital ones because the chain is what makes all the cutting happen. The chain is a rotating component that holds together all the blades, also known as the teeth. The teeth are attached, maintaining a specific distance in the chain. The chain holds on to those teeth strongly and keeps on rotating to cut the desired material. The chain is traditionally made out of steel and such materials. Therefore, the lifetime of the chain depends on the way of use.

How Long Do Chainsaw Chains Last?

The lifetime of a chainsaw chain has no fixed limit and depends on usage and maintenance. The chain should last many years; 5-6 years should be no problem. However, if the chainsaw chain is used properly and taken care of, it can last way longer.

The chainsaw can concede unexpected damage out of nowhere which can lower its possibility to work efficiently. But whatever may be the case, an ideal chainsaw, regardless of the unexpected events, can last and work efficiently for years. The lifespan can’t be predicted accurately because it all depends on how it is used and what kind of damage it is receiving.

Different Types of Chainsaw Chains

There are different types of chainsaw chains that are normally available in the market.  While this classification of chains can be based on many things, there are generally three things on which the primary classification is done. These are the cutter type, the chain sequence or the chain arrangement, and the specialized add-ons?

The chain sequence and the cutter type create the most difference in the chains. Apart from all this, if you don’t have the patience to go through the long and descriptive discussion that I will begin shortly, take a look at the chart below, and you will get to know all that you need!

Chain Drive link number
Around 4-5 years
H22, H23
Around 4-5 years
H30, H37
Around 4-5 years
H25, H21, H38
Around 4-5 years
H51, H47, H46, H80, H82
Around 4-5 years
H42, H48, H49, H52, H25, H81
Around 4-5 years
H57, H64, H65
Around 4-5 years

Now that you have a quick list of some types of chains based on the qualities and lifespan, let’s get more into it and talk about the different chain types. First, let’s make a classification of chains based on the cutter type.

Full-Chisel Cutters:

These cutters are the ones that have square corners, and this quality makes them efficient for cutting at a higher speed than most of the cutting chains. This chain is best-suited for cutting hardwoods when the smoothness of the cut isn’t paramount. Even though it’s an efficient chain, like every other tool, it has some drawbacks. This type of chain isn’t much durable for rough use and also doesn’t work for long in the case of cutting dirty wood.

Semi-Chisel Cutters:

The semi-chisel cutters have rounded teeth which means the chain has blades that have beveled corners. Because of this, they have the maximum efficiency in the case of cutting softwood. This chain can be easily used in a rough environment cutting dirty, dry, and frozen wood. Even though the semi-chisel cutter is efficient in so many cases, it has a huge drawback: its speed. Even though it is slow, by its cutting efficiency, it makes it up. The kickback risk is also lower than most in the case of a semi-chisel cutter.

Low Profile Cutter:

The low-profile cutters, also known as chipper cutters, are a prevalent chain type found in the market. These types of chains are found all around the globe. This type of chain also has rounded teeth and is specially designed for safety. In addition, this chain has the feature to prevent kickbacks as much as possible for the user to feel safe while working. For people who are new to using chainsaws, this is an excellent choice.

Full Skip Chain:

This chain is one of the most efficient chains ever and is extremely good at what it does. The full skip chain has comparatively fewer teeth than other chains, but the guide bar is larger, with almost 24inch or more. Having fewer teeth might give you the impression that this chain is less efficient than others, but it is actually the other way around. The speed and the arrangement of the blades make up an amazing combination that increases the chain’s efficiency rapidly. Even though the cutting speed and amount are large, the final cuts aren’t that smooth, which is a drawback of this chain. Then again, it’s efficient to cut firewood, cutting limbs, and various other tasks that don’t require smoothness.

Things That Ruin Your Chainsaw Chain

There are many unexpected elements that you have to face while working with a chainsaw. Many of the damage can kill your blade and chain in ways that you do not realize. I’ll discuss the things that damage and ruin your chainsaw now.

Improper Lubricant:

When you use a wrong and improper lubricant to lubricate the bar and the chain, it can damage the whole thing. The damage will come from the overheating of the machine, and therefore the whole machine will be damaged.

Hitting a Nail:

Many times wood had various materials inside them, which create a barrier for the chainsaw to work. If a chainsaw hits a nail, fence staples, and stuff like these, then the chain and the blade are sure to be damaged for good.

Cutting Ice:

While working in the winter and especially if it’s snowing, you have to be careful while working because the ice can chip right through your blades and wear your chain out.

Hitting Dirt and Rocks:

Hitting rocks might the top reason for chainsaw blades to be damaged. While cutting through a wooden log on the ground, you are very much likely to face dirt and also rocks. These rocks come in the way of the blade and damage the teeth In ways you can never imagine.

Wrong Storage/Rust:

The machine can easily get rusted if you don’t store it properly. The chain and the bar must be properly cleaned and lubricated for the chainsaw to be stored properly. Clean the chainsaw properly, especially the bar and the chain and then use oil and cover it while storing.

Depending on these events that I have shared with you, the lifespan of your chainsaw hugely depends on the type of work you’re doing with it. The damage done to the chain and the chainsaw controls the lifespan of your chainsaw.

Final Thoughts

As a professional whose specialty is in chainsaws, I would say that I have properly summarized a lot of information for you to learn from one place. I hope you had the patience to read through the whole thing. The Type of chainsaw you’re using, and the type of chain or blade it has is the primary concern for you because only then can you understand how long the chainsaw should actually last or work properly. When you know the details of the tool you’re using, the tool you own, you can easily understand its proper use and what damages it. When you understand the damaging things, you will know how long your chainsaw or chainsaw chain will last. So, reread the whole thing if you need to, and you will understand how long your chainsaw chain will last.