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Reliable chainsaw brands

By Adele Dyer

We've surveyed thousands of chainsaw owners to uncover the most and least reliable brands. Find out which brands top our table.

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Most and least chainsaw brands

We've rated the different chainsaw brands for reliability to guide you to those brands that should provide years of reliable service, and away from those prone to developing faults.

To do this we've surveyed Which? members who own chainsaws, quizzing them about any problems they’ve encountered. We use this feedback to create reliability ratings for each chainsaw brand.

The table below reveals reliability ratings for four chainsaw brands, including Stihl and Husqvarna, based on the experiences of people who own them. 

Once you’ve discovered which brands are most reliable, go straight to our chainsaw reviews to find the best model for you.

Which? members can log in to view the scores in the table below. If you’re not a Which? member, take a Which? trial for £1 to access this and all our product reviews.

Chainsaw brands rated for reliability
Brand Reliability rating Reliability score

Table notes
Ratings based on a survey of over 1,000 Which? members who own chainsaws in April and May 2015.


Member Content

How chainsaw brands compare

Overall, chainsaws are simple machines that are fairly reliable with an average reliability score of 74%. This compares favourably with tools, such as grass trimmers, that have an average reliability rating of 44%, for example.

But there’s still a difference between the best and worst brands of chainsaws, as while the top-scoring brand gets 83% for reliability, at the bottom of the table one brand scores 70% for reliability.

70% of petrol chainsaws are still running fault-free after eight years

We calculate our reliability scores based on the proportion of chainsaws with problems per brand in our customer survey, against those from the same brand without problems. The faults are weighted so that more serious problems have a greater effect on the score. The resulting star ratings show a brand’s reliability compared with other brands in the same category. So that newer or older models don’t influence the score unfairly, we adjust scores to account for age.

Common chainsaw problems

When we surveyed Which? members about the problems they’d encountered with their chainsaws, these were reported the most often:

  • Engine won't turn over 34%
  • Chain tensioning problems 34%
  • Chain doesn't oil correctly 32%

Chainsaw reviews you can trust

As well as rating chainsaw brands for reliability, we independently test and review chainsaws from the biggest brands and cheaper own-brands at the Which? test lab. Our rigorous field tests include an ease-of-use assessment, to find out how tiring the chainsaw is to use, and hard-wood assessment, to find out whether the chainsaw can really cope with heavy cutting jobs.

Which? is independent – we work for you, the consumer, so you can be sure that our product recommendations are influenced only by our test results. We don’t take advertising and we buy all of the products that we test ourselves, so our advice helps you to make the right choice first time and avoid costly mistakes.

Compare chainsaws and find the best one for you using our full chainsaw reviews.


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