4 Chainsaw Maintenance Checkpoints

Posted on January 21, 2022 by Mike Connell

Chainsaw maintenance is the key to higher performance and longer lifespan of your chainsaw. The process of a chainsaw tune-up needs to be properly completed, not only for the machine but also for your safety. Regular chainsaw maintenance helps prevent issues like the motor constantly shutting off or running so roughly that it causes kickbacks. Regardless if the chainsaw has been sitting in storage for a few months or if it has been used frequently, be sure to inspect your chainsaw to ensure it is in good working condition. Routine maintenance of your chainsaw should have four important checkpoints to inspect.

Spark Plugs

It is important to always have your chainsaw shut off before you start inspecting. An integral part of the chainsaw is the spark plug. This part can be damaged from excessive heat, oil residue, or a build up of carbon. Knowing the signs of a bad spark plug is vital to keeping your chainsaw running efficiently. Inspect the spark plug for any dark-colored buildup of carbon or oily residue as it needs to be carefully removed. After removing the spark plug, inspect its terminal and carefully clean away any corrosion before replacing the spark plug. If it is physically damaged or produces a weak spark then it needs to be replaced.


One of the reasons why your chainsaw isn’t running smoothly could be because of the air or fuel filter. The air filter safeguards the engine against debris while letting the air to run through. Thus it needs to be cleaned or replaced periodically to ensure the engine is receiving the optimal amount of airflow. Air filters that are dirty or dusty can be cleaned by blowing air on it or by washing it gently with soap and warm water. It is important to let the filter dry completely before placing it back into the machine. Any filters that are damaged or excessively dirty and won’t clean up need to be replaced. Don’t forget to check the condition of the fuel filter too.


The optimal combination of air and fuel is necessary for your chainsaw to run efficiently. With regular chainsaw maintenance, the machine will idle correctly as well as reduce engine smoke. Taking care of your chainsaw will help extend the longevity of your machine, such as using carburetor cleaner, eliminating grease, and removing dirt. Your carburetor might be clogged up if your chainsaw is backfiring and overheating, emitting black smoke, or is hard to start. This can be due to old fuel that was left in the tank during storage.

Bar and Chain

The most obvious part that receives a lot of wear and tear is the chainsaw bar and chain. Before getting started on a project, check the condition of the chain to see if the blades are sharp and well-oiled. Keeping the chain sharp will help make cuts cleaner, smoother, and helps prevent dangerous kickbacks. If your chainsaw is cutting rough or creating small chips and sawdust then it is time to sharpen your chain. While you are taking a break from cutting, check the oil level of the reservoir to see if it needs to be replenished. Keeping your chainsaw at its peak with a well-oiled and sharpened chain helps it run smoother, protect the chainsaw bar, and extend the chainsaw’s lifespan. Don’t forget to check the condition of the chainsaw bar as well! Not only will oil help protect the machine from overheating but also protect against excessive friction on the chainsaw bar.

Chainsaw Services

Depending on the frequency of use, tune-ups and chainsaw maintenance needs to be completed every few months if used continuously throughout the year. If only used a few weeks out of the year, it is recommended to get a professional check-up once a year. At M&K Outdoor Products, our trained technicians can precisely sharpen your chain or inspect your chainsaw engine. If you suspect a problem or just have questions, contact us or bring your chainsaw in and we will be happy to help get you back running again. 

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