How to Start a Chainsaw? (Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide)

Last updated on June 4th, 2023 at 10:38 pm

Have you purchased a new chainsaw and want to start working with it? If you want to know how to start a chainsaw, this guide will help you out to start your chainsaw.

Most of the products have a user manual that provides guidelines for use. But along with manual proper steps and knowledge is also required.

 How to Start a Chainsaw
How to Start a Chainsaw

Some tools are available in the market that require complete knowledge before using them; otherwise, they are dangerous. A chainsaw is one of them. Therefore, proper guidelines are necessary.

This article provides a general guide for starting a chainsaw. A general chainsaw is basically a gas powered chainsaw. However, if you are dealing with electric powered saw specifically you can visit How to Start Electric powered saw (step-by-step).

Let’s get onto the guide.

Prepare Yourself before Starting Chainsaw:

Chainsaws are one of the most dangerous tools, but they are essential for people who love woodworking. If you want to start chainsaw, you must first prepare yourself and your chainsaw before starting.

  • Safety gear: You should wear safety gear like goggles, gloves, and earplugs while using a chainsaw.
  • Prepare the chain: Before starting to use a chainsaw, it is important to make sure that the chain is not too tight on the bar and has enough slack in case it needs to be adjusted.
  • Know what you’re doing: You must know how to use a chainsaw and have some experience with them before starting.

How to Start Chainsaw (Ultimate Step by Step Guide)

There are two correct ways to start your chainsaw: on the ground or with the saw between your legs. No matter which starting method you choose, remember that the chain brake should always be activated. Many chainsaw models can be started in what is known as half-throttle position.

How to start a chainsaw (step-by-step)

Before you start your saw, perform a quick maintenance check:

  • Check the oil level
  • Fill it with fresh fuel (using a proper fuel-and-oil mix for 2-cycle engines)
  • Ensure the spark plug boot is fully seated.

Step 1: Stabilize the Chainsaw

The chainsaw should always be started on level ground, never up in the air or on a high surface.

Place your right foot inside the rear handle and press it down firmly to secure the chainsaw.

Place your left hand on the top handlebar.

Make sure that nothing is touching or near the chainsaw guide bar or chain.

Step 2: Engage the Chain Brake

With your left hand on the top handlebar, lean your wrist forward to push the chain brake handle forward.

How to Start a Chainsaw
Engage the Chain Brake

This will engage the chain brake, which prevents the chain from spinning during the starting process.

Step 3: Turn the Chainsaw On and Open Up the Choke

Turn the chainsaw on/off switch to the on position.

Open the choke by moving the knob/lever to the cold start (or fully open) position. The choke regulates the air/fuel mixture that goes to the engine.

Step 4: Prime the Fuel

Press the fuel primer bulb three to five times or until the bulb stiffens and you can see fuel in it.

How to Start a Chainsaw
Prime the Fuel

The primer bulb draws fuel from the tank and into the carburettor.

Step 5: Pull the Starting Cord a Few Times

With your left hand on the top handlebar, the chain brake engaged, and your right foot in the rear handle, pull up on the starting cord with your right hand in a smooth, quick motion. (Not too fast or too hard).

How to Start a Chainsaw
Pull the Starting Cord a Few Times

Pull up on the starting cord a few times until you hear the engine trying to turn over and failing.

Step 6: Close the Choke

Move the choke lever to the halfway position when you hear the engine failing to turn over.

Pull up on the starting cord again. The engine should start and idle. If not, pull up several more times.

Step 7: Let the Chainsaw Idle

Allow the chainsaw to idle for 30 seconds. If you don’t, the chainsaw could stall out.

Step 8: Close the Choke

After 30 seconds of idling time, move the choke lever to the closed position.

How to Start a Chainsaw
Let the Chainsaw Idle

The chainsaw should still be running.

Step 9: Disengage the Chain Brake

Pull back on the chain brake handle with your right hand to disengage it. Otherwise, the chain will not spin after starting.

Step 10: Lift Up the Chainsaw

Gas Pole Saw
Lift Up the Chainsaw

With the chainsaw still firmly in both hands, raise your body into the upward position.

To start sawing, pull the throttle with your right hand’s index and middle fingers.

The saw is now ready for use. For safe working practices, please refer to your Instruction Manual.

You can also visit the top 10 best chainsaw reviews if you love working with wood. This article will help you out which chainsaw will be best according to your needs. Moreover, cutting high branches also checks the top 10 gas pole saw.

Bonus Tip:

Before getting started, check the chain lubrication. Hold up the saw against a light-coloured background, such as a tree trunk or a piece of paper on the ground and open the throttle fully. If some chain lubricant appears on the light-coloured background, then you can start work.

Some Necessary Guidelines to Start Chainsaw:

Before starting your chain saw, the chain brake should be activated by pushing it forward.

Always remove the bar cover before starting your chain saw.

If your chain saw has a primer bulb, press it several times. This assists with starting and reduces the number of pulls needed to start.

To start the chainsaw, lay it on a flat surface. The cutting attachment must not contact the ground to avoid blunting it when starting and putting yourself unnecessarily at risk.

In this article, We have covered many ways of starting a chainsaw. If you are not a professional, it may help you start a chainsaw efficiently.

If you found this article helpful in any way leave a comment in the comment section below. Your suggestions will be truly appreciated.


Q: How do you power a satisfactory chainsaw?

Ans: Solid Biofuel is unlocked in the same Tier as the chainsaw, you use that to power it. Solid Biofuel is made from Biomass. Also you just need to walk up to a tree and get it so it has the white highlight then just hold down the left mouse button.

Q: What are the 4 steps to starting a chainsaw on the ground?

Ans: Place the chainsaw on flat, level ground. Make sure the bar is clear of obstacles and bystanders are at a safe distance. Engage the chain brake. Engage the safety switch and simultaneously pull the trigger switch to start the chainsaw motor.

Q: How does a chainsaw pull start work?

Ans: The operator pulls the rope’s handle or grip. This causes the rope to unwind around the crankshaft and spin it. The spinning motion of the crankshaft cranks the engine. The crankshaft’s motion engages the flywheel, enabling the engine to start.

Q: What is Easy Start technology?

Ans: With the STIHL Easy2Start system, starting STIHL power equipment is effortless and straightforward. An additional spring between the crankshaft and starter rope rotor allow the engine to start with a quick, easy pull.

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