How to Adjust the Chain Tension on an Electric Chainsaw


Electric chainsaws are cheap and economical for consumers who only need a chainsaw to chop firewood or cut down small branches. These chainsaws are designed for the light user in every way possible. For instance, the toolless chain tensioner, a knob located on the bottom of the machine, tightens and loosens the chain with just a spin of your finger.

Things You'll Need

  • Electric chainsaw
  • Turn the chainsaw off. Once it completely stops, grab the plastic chain brake on the top of the saw and push it backward.

  • Pull on the chain lightly. If it has no give, it is too tight. If the chain is barely hanging on the bar, then it is too loose.

  • Locate the knob on the bottom half of the saw where the motor and the chain meet.

  • Loosen the chain by rotating the knob counterclockwise. Tighten the chain by moving the knob clockwise.

Tips & Warnings

  • A new chain may need tightening after as few as five cuts.
  • Use gloves when pulling on the chain as the blade can easily pierce skin.

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  • Photo Credit chainsaw image by Andris Daugovich from
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