“Making outdoors easy for over 40 years!”

How to start a Chainsaw

Before you start a Chainsaw, we suggest you carry out a pre-flight check as follows: 

The chain brake should be activated before you start the Chainsaw. Most Chainsaw models can be started in what is known as half-throttle position. The chain can then rotate if the chain-brake is not activated. There is only one genuine safe way to start your chainsaw – on the ground. The controls may vary from each saw model. Before you attempt to start any Chainsaw, always read and understand the Operators Instruction Book or Operators Manual for the correct and safe operation of your particular saw. Make sure the fuel tank has been filled with the correct recommended fuel mixture (do not use straight gas). The oil tank has been filled with chain-lube. Now with the chain-brake OFF (safety bar pulled hard back), pull the chain around with a heavy gloved hand or adjustment tool, to make sure the chain is free to rotate. Check the chain for correct adjustment. Adjust if necessary. Now you are ready to start.

Basic Starting Set-Up for a Cold Start

1. To start the saw on the ground, place it on a flat surface. Make sure the chain guide bar and saw-chain is free from touching anything and people and/or animals are at a safe distance. You are now ready to pull the starting handle.
2. Activate the chain brake by pushing the safety lever forward.
3. Press the decompression control knob (if fitted).
4. Activate the choke to maximum choke position – 100%.
5. If the saw is equipped with a primer bulb, press the bulb 4-6 times until the fuel becomes visible in the bulb and is stiff on the finger to prime. 
6. Place your right boot foot/toe in the rear handle gap to support the saw. Place your left hand on the front handle and grip firmly.
7. Pull the starter handle aggressively with your right hand repeatedly until the engine fires. ( ‘POP’, ‘POP’) but does not run. Please note: pulling the engine over past this initial ‘POP’ may cause the engine to flood and not start.
8. Immediately push the choke in (half-throttle should still be still activated). Now pull aggressively 1-4 pulls, until the saw starts.
9. Once the engine has started, release the chain-brake (pull it back toward you). Accelerate the engine for a few seconds to allow it to warm up. Check the chain is spinning freely. Please note: the squeezing of the throttle trigger will automatically release the fast idle setting and allow the saw to idle. Once idling smoothly, you are now ready to Chainsaw your wood.


Starting a Hot Engine

The chainsaw will most likely start without the choke when the engine is hot. Follow the instructions above, omitting the points relating to the choke. Apply the chain-brake before attempting to re-start. If the engine is difficult to start, re-apply half-throttle setting. Follow point no.9 above.  

Always: before starting check the chain tension. Once started and immediately after warming up the saw, check the chain lubrication system (fresh chain-oil showing glistening on the chain), and activate the chain brake and inertia functions for correct functionality each time you use your Chainsaw.

Chain Lubrication Check

Always check the chain lubrication function before starting work. Follow these steps: start the chainsaw. Hold the saw over a stump and rev up the engine. Chain lubrication is working if there is a line of oil left on the stump.

Chain Brake Function Check

1. Place the saw on a sturdy surface.
2. Start the saw. Hold the Chainsaw firmly by the front and rear handles.
3. Accelerate to nearly 100%.
4. Release the throttle and immediately activate the chain brake by turning your left wrist forward towards the kickback guard. Do not let go of the front handle.
5. The chain-brake guard lever must ‘click’ forward and immediately stop the chain from rotating.  
6. Re-charge the guard with a firm pull back toward the handle. 

Back to top