Will Ice Dull A Chainsaw?

Chainsaws can cut through all kinds of wood and other tough materials. One material that finds people debating about whether to use a chainsaw with is ice. Will ice dull a chainsaw?

Dirty and muddy ice will dull a chainsaw because the frozen dirt acts as tiny rocks that slowly file down the cutter teeth. However, pure, and clean ice has little effect on chainsaw sharpness. This kind of ice is used for sculptures at parties and are created by professionals using small chainsaws.

Let’s talk more about ice dulling chainsaws.

What causes a chainsaw to dull after using it on ice?

Dirty ice will dull the cutter teeth of a chainsaw chain because of all the little pieces of other materials that are frozen in the ice. Outside ice will collect bits of dirt, dust, wood, metal, and even tiny rocks. When you try sawing through ice with your chainsaw, these frozen pieces can interrupt the cut. This will cause the chain to dull. Ice is smooth and easy to saw through, but these other materials aren’t, and more power will be required to saw through them. If not more power, then they will have to be sawed more than other sections of the ice.

Another reason that could be causing your chainsaw to dull after using it with ice can be rust. The friction between the chain and the ice can produce enough heat to melt the ice a bit. The melted ice can run down the chainsaw bar and through the chain. If you don’t clean your chainsaw afterwards, the ice can rust the chain and bar. The ice can also build up in your chain and accumulate in your chainsaw. This rusts the bar, the chain, and the clutch, potentially causing problems for your chainsaw. All of these aspects will make a chainsaw dull sooner, which is part of why cleaning is so important.

Tips when cutting ice with a chainsaw

A chainsaw should always be sharp, to enable it to cut through ice with ease. A dull chainsaw only slows you down and makes it more challenging to do anything. For that reason, it’s important that you learn what to do whenever you use your chainsaw on ice. Here are several tips to keep in mind every time you use your chainsaw on ice.

Always wear safety gear when chainsawing ice

Wear protective gear when sawing ice

You should always be wearing protective gear when using a chainsaw, and sawing ice is no exception. A helmet with a visor and your working boots is a good start. Some water-resistant clothing is a good idea to protect you from slush and water spray. If you don’t have a helmet with a visor, safety goggles will do the trick. You want to protect your eyes from little pieces of ice that could be flicked up. Make sure you wear gloves when sawing ice.

Drain the ice reservoir before sawing

Ensure that you drain out the ice reservoir before you start cutting the ice. Oil pollutes the ice and is also harmful when consumed by humans or wildlife. We recommend that you use biodegradable oil as an alternative. The water may seem like a good lubricant but it’s always good to be safe.

Avoid sawing dirty ice

Dirty muddy ice or snow will quickly dull your chainsaw. It may contain elements such as metal or tiny rocks that when hit by the chainsaw, will cause it to dull. This is why it’s recommended to only use your chainsaw on clean or pure ice. This kind of ice has little to no effect on the chainsaw because it is smooth to saw through. If you really need to saw some dirty ice, be prepared to deal with a duller chain afterwards.

What is the best chainsaw for ice?

Dry your chainsaw straight away

After using a chainsaw to cut ice, you need to immediately dry and oil the tool. If you leave it lying around for any real length of time, the chainsaw bar, clutch, and chain will rust. This causes more problems than just a dull chain. So, make sure you are properly wiping down the chainsaw, drying, and oiling it after sawing ice.

Clear water residue from the chainsaw

Before you turn your chainsaw off fully and start cleaning, you should rev it to clear out some of the water residues. To do this, walk away from where you were working, into an area with some space. Then hold the chainsaw out and rev it a few times. Make sure you safely operate the chainsaw when completing this task. This is a good way to clean bigger chunks of ice and water residue. If you just shut off the chainsaw in really cold weather, the water will freeze quickly and cause a hassle to start and use.

What is the best chainsaw for cutting ice?

A chainsaw can be a great tool to use to cut ice. We recommend that you use a chainsaw that has a 20-inch or more bar length. For example, our Husqvarna 455 Rancher chainsaw is a great option, with a 20-inch bar, anti-vibration technology, and easy start-up.

Chainsaw like these give extra reach, stopping you from having to bend down when cutting ice. They can also cut through any ice thickness quite easily. If you are looking to only cut small pieces of ice, you could go for a smaller chainsaw, probably with a bar length of 16 inches. But no matter what chainsaw you use, make sure you have a good-grade lubricant on the chainsaw. This will protect the chainsaw a bit more when sawing ice and maintain its longevity.

Cutting ice with a chainsaw can be an easy process given how smooth ice is. If you make sure to take care of your chainsaw and avoid cutting dirty ice, you won’t have many problems with dulling. But it is a good idea to sharpen the chainsaw cutter teeth each time. This will allow the chainsaw to cut through ice with more ease and last longer.

If you’re in the market for a new chainsaw, check out our quality range of chainsaws for sale. If you want a chain to go with it, or just need to replace your old one, take a look at our selection of fantastic chainsaw chains for sale. We also have loads more resources about chainsaws, including why your chain won’t fit a chainsaw. Check out Canberra Diamond Blade for all your gardening and construction needs.

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