How To Properly Store Chainsaws

Chainsaws are heavy machines that can take a significant amount of wear and tear from working with a variety of materials. It’s important to provide care and maintenance to your chainsaws, as well as good storage conditions.  Let’s talk about how to properly store your chainsaw.

To properly store a chainsaw, pick a space that is dry and out of direct sunlight to reduce the chances of rust over time. Clean and perform maintenance on the chainsaw before putting it in a carry bag and away in the tool shed. The chainsaw should be locked away to prevent children from finding it.

Read on to find all the steps to take to properly store your chainsaw.

The best place to store your chainsaw

The best storage location for your chainsaw needs to be dry, out of direct sunlight, locked away, and out of reach of children. Any potential dampness can cause condensation to form on the chainsaw and have parts of it rust. UV embrittlement occurs from exposure to sun rays which is why it’s important to store your chainsaw out of the sunlight. It’s also a good idea to invest in a carry bag or case for your chainsaw to protect it from dust while in storage.

The best place to store a chainsaw properly

The best places to store a chainsaw includes but is not limited to:

  • The garage
  • An outdoor tool shed
  • The original case
  • In a locked wooden box
  • Secured on the wall or hanging
  • A lockable room or cupboard

The most common storage space for chainsaws is in the owner’s garage/tool shed because it can be locked away. It’s also kept organized with the rest of your tools, often out of sunlight and in a dry area. Hanging your chainsaw or putting it on a shelf is a good way to keep it dry, in case of rain and a small flood in the shed. Your garage or tool shed is also recommended because children aren’t likely to go in there often, especially if you lock it. This will protect them from being injured by a stored chainsaw.

How do you store a chainsaw when it’s not in use?

When you are planning to store your chainsaw, you should clean it completely before locking it away. There are different storage steps to take, depending on how long you plan on storing your chainsaw.

Short-term chainsaw storage (1-6 months)

Below is a step-by-step guide on how you should store your chainsaw for the short term:

Test your chainsaw

Before storing your chainsaw, you need to give it a final test to make sure everything is working as it should. You don’t want to store a damaged chainsaw, then try to pull it out when you need it only for it to not work. Check your chainsaw for any potential chainsaw maintenance that needs to be completed before storing it away. You should carry out a compression test and repair any damages to the chainsaw before storing it in a safe place.

Drain the chainsaw fuel tank

Ensure that you drain all the fuel stored in the chainsaw fuel tank into a fuel storage container. You can use a siphon or a funnel to ensure that you drain all the fuel. You might find that you need to run the chainsaw for a little while to use up the last of the fuel. This is called ‘running it dry’. The chainsaw should be left running until it starts to splutter. This indicates that the fuel is running out. Add some fuel stabiliser to spread through the fuel system. Run the chainsaw again to encourage the spread. This will protect any last bits of fuel from forming gum deposits in the fuel circulation. Also, add fuel stabiliser to the stored fuel.

Apply oil

After the chainsaw runs dry, it’s time to apply some oil to the chain. Oil works as a durable shield for the metal parts of the chainsaw that get corrosion from exposure to air and water. That’s why it’s important to apply oil to a chainsaw you’re putting into storage. You should oil the chain and rubber parts of the chainsaw. The oil decreases the damage to rubber over time. By oiling your chainsaw, you will be promoting the longevity of its condition.

Clean and oil a chainsaw before storing it

Medium-term to long-term chainsaw storage

Sometimes you end up locking your chainsaw away for a lot longer than expected. When you do this, there should be a few extra steps taken to maintain your chainsaw in storage. There are steps for the medium-term, which is up to 3 years of chainsaw storage. Also, long-term chainsaw storage, which is 4 to 10 years.

You should complete the steps we laid out to follow for short-term chainsaw storage and then address these steps for medium to long-term storage:

Get fuel stabiliser for chainsaw fuel tank

When storing your chainsaw for a long period of time, you have the option to keep the chainsaw fuel in the tank for about two years. To do this, you need to invest in fuel stabiliser. We mentioned using fuel stabiliser to protect the chainsaw when you drain it. But you can actually keep the fuel in the chainsaw tank with the fuel stabiliser for two years. Remember, this is only for medium-term storage though. After two years, you will need to drain and clean the chainsaw fuel tank.

Remove the chainsaw air filter

You should remove the chainsaw air filter while preparing to put the chainsaw into storage. Use fogging oil and spray it on the inside of the air filter for about 30 seconds. This will clean it out and provide a protective layer over the filter.

Drain the chainsaw fuel for long-term storage and disassemble

We mentioned before that fuel stabiliser will only work for a medium-term storage period, so for long-term chainsaw storage, you need to drain the fuel. Follow the same steps we outlined for the short-term chainsaw storage.

Afterwards, you should remove the carburettor and give it a good clean. Also, remove the chain from the guide bar and drive assembly. Clean out all the dirt, wood chips, and grime from the chain and bar.

Once you have completed all these steps, plus a good chainsaw maintenance check, your chainsaw is ready to be stored in a safe place.

Why just storing your chainsaw is not enough

Why you need to properly store a chainsaw

Properly caring for and storing your chainsaw is important to maintain the quality of the machine. If you don’t take the time to store a chainsaw properly, you will have to replace parts or buy a new chainsaw a lot sooner than you expect. If you don’t take the steps to prepare your chainsaw for storage, and place it in any random spot, you risk damaging the chainsaw. Things that could happen to your chainsaw if you don’t store it properly include:

  • Rubber degradation from the ethanol and additives found in fuel.
  • Rust and/or corrosion of metal parts from air and sunlight exposure.
  • Corrosion and gum formation inside tiny passages of the carburettor.
  • Hardened anti-vibration mounts that can also rust over time.

All these aspects can completely ruin the functioning of your chainsaw resulting in needing a completely new one next time you go to use it.

There is so much to know about using chainsaws and all their parts. We actually have a detailed guide called Different Types of Chainsaw Chains and it is a great read on all the different things you should consider when choosing a chain! Whilst you’re at it, should you sharpen your chainsaw chain? Maybe it is time for a new investment!

If you are up for a new chainsaw, check out our Canberra Mowers shop in Mitchell. We stock the latest Husqvarna chainsaws in Canberra for both professional and home users. And if you need an excellent chain to go with the saw, we have a wide range of chain saw chains for sale.

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