If the time has come to buy a new chainsaw or you’re looking to buy one for the first time, it can be pretty confusing.
Just a quick glimpse at the market will show hundreds of different chainsaws available. And, no one has the time to sift through all of these to choose the best for their needs.
Then, there are different types. You could opt for a traditional handle chainsaw, but top handle models can be easier to use thanks to their shorter design.
If you need to climb trees and require more manoeuvrability, a top handle chainsaw may be the best choice for you.
That is why we took the time to search for the top 5 top handle chainsaws on the market today.
Let’s dive in.
OUR TOP PICK
One of the leading brands in the chainsaw market today is Husqvarna. The Husqvarna T435 is an impressive climbing chainsaw and is one of the most eco-friendly models on the market.
Although it has a pretty large 35.2 cc gas engine, the T435 meets the standards of strict environmental regulations around the world.
This is down to the fact that its engine uses up less fuel than others, resulting in fewer exhaust emissions. Compared to other similar-sized chainsaws, this is just as powerful and more eco-friendly.
A snap-lock filter cover allows easy access to the filter and a quick-release cover that protects the spark plug also gives easy and quick access for maintenance and cleaning.
Lightweight and well-balanced, the Husqvarna T435 is a superb piece of kit to make any arborist’s job easier.
The second Husqvarna chainsaw on our list, the 120i Cordless Electric Chainsaw is perfect for climbing trees and giving you more freedom of movement for precise and safe work.
Although it is not technically a climbing chainsaw, due to its rear handle, the Husqvarna 120i works very well on trees. Its cordless manner means you can manoeuvre easily and not have to worry about catching the cord in the blades.
Battery-powered, this chainsaw has a powerful 40V battery that also fits other Husqvarna tools. Therefore, you can save money on just one battery per tool!
It also comes with a brushless motor that generates power to spin the chain. This produces a high amount of torque to weight ratio, maximising efficiency and power.
The safety features of this 120i model are excellent. It boasts an easy-to-use keypad, as well as a chain tensioning system that requires no tools.
Also included is an inertia-activated chain brake. This automatically stops the chainsaw’s chain if there is any kickback.
Just looking at user reviews, you can see how happy and satisfied customers are with the Husqvarna 120i chainsaw. However, it is pretty cumbersome so you may find it quite hard to hold for long periods.
Weighing only 4.6 pounds without the chain and bar, the STIHL MSA 140 C Chainsaw is a lightweight model that is ideal for professional arborists.
Not only is this a lightweight chainsaw, but it also has a very quiet performance, so you don't need to worry about disturbing the neighbours all day long. Its 12-inch chain bar is perfect for cutting down small trees, limbing, and pruning various bushes and trees.
The chain itself measures ¼ of an inch wide and delivers an accurate cut every time. Therefore, you can be certain of clean cuts when maintaining trees around your home or land with no unsightly remains.
Powered by an AP battery, this electric chainsaw runs off a brushless, commercial-grade motor. This provides an excellent cutting speed and runs for long periods of time.
As for its ease-of-use, the STIHL MSA 140 C Chainsaw couldn’t be simpler. It boasts instant start technology for an easy start up. That means you can get to work as soon as possible.
This set comes with an AK battery and charger to save you the time and money buying them elsewhere. Although quite expensive, we believe this is perfect for occasional use in the garden.
The eSkde 26cc Top Handle Petrol Chainsaw comes with a powerful 26cc 2 stroke petrol engine that delivers power and is fuel-efficient.
With a compact size. You can easily store this top handle chainsaw in the garage or garden shed, or even transport it in the car when needed.
It boasts a 230 ml fuel capacity meaning it can be used for long periods without needing to refuel every so often.
This chainsaw is capable of cutting, trimming, and slicing with ease thanks to its efficient operating speed of 11,700 rpm.
We love the eSkde 26cc ergonomic handle design. It is very comfortable to hold and use, also, its fast-acting chain brake acts as a welcome safety feature when in use.
Even with regular use, the chain remains in a good condition thanks to an automatic oil fee system. Therefore, you won't have to manually change the oil regularly.
If you have a bunch of limbing projects coming up, the 10-inch chain of this chainsaw will do the job perfectly!
Sporting a strong and reliable engine displacement, this 26CC mini cordless petrol chainsaw from UWINGARDEN can last for up to 72 hours of work and is 2 kg lighter than most of its competitors.
Although not the most eco-friendly chainsaw on the market, this UWINGARDEN model saves up to 50% oil and cuts exhaust emissions by up to 75%.
Therefore, you can use this safe in the knowledge that you are not harming the environment half as much as other models may do.
An electrical chain break stops any movement from the chain if there is any kickback during use. To be even safer, you can push the brake pad forward when using it.
If you want a durable piece of kit, this is well worth considering. Its double edged blade is made from hardened steel, resulting in a firmer and sharper blade that can easily cut through thick branches (up to 320 mm in diameter).
So, whether you have a large project coming p up, or just need to fell a few small trees, this mini cordless chainsaw is ideal.
The start handle is equipped with a pull mechanism, so you can start the engine with a steady, medium speed. Therefore, you don’t need much force or strength to start the chainsaw and kick back is minimised through the start pull cord.
Smart and compact, this lightweight chainsaw from UWINGARDEN is ideal for large-scale and small-scale jobs thanks to its easy manoeuvrability.
The Einhell GC-PC 730 petrol chainsaw is an efficient, compact machine that will reliably cut branches and thin out scrub from trees and brushes every time.
The engine on this chainsaw starts easily thanks to a choke and primer. And, to ensure it starts easily each time, it also comes with an extra digital ignition.
The chain will stop within just a few milliseconds if you keep your finger on the finger guard. This will trigger the chain brake and stop the chain from moving if there is any kickback.
The crank shaft features bilateral bearings, meaning the petrol engine doesn’t run with many vibrations. This equates to a more user-friendly experience, even for long cutting sessions.
Last but not least, we have the powerful yet lightweight GD40TCS Cordless Top Handle Chainsaw from Greenworks. Weighing just 2.4 kg, this is a well balanced chainsaw that is easy to control and safe to work with.
As soon as you hold its ergonomic soft-grip handle, you can start to manoeuvre the chainsaw with ease. Therefore, you can cut some harder-to-reach areas of bushes and trees without stretching.
The compact and durable blade of this Greenworks chainsaw is perfect for trimming branches and working from heights. Its overall size and lightweight nature results in a safe, efficient, and quick way of cutting.
In fact, its chain speed is 12 m/s, so you can achieve quick, clean cuts on timber every time.
There is also a safety mechanism in place. The chain automatically stops if the chainsaw recoils because of kickback, so you are protected from the chains instantly.
Furthermore, this chainsaw features an automatic oiler to keep the blade lubricated at all times. Therefore, you won’t need to stop and re-oil it yourself.
This is one special tool that works with any 40 V, 2 Ah, or 4Ah Greenworks battery. And, if anything goes wrong, you are covered by a 3-year guarantee.
Smart, high performing, and excellent customer service make the Greenworks GD40TCS one of the best top handle chainsaws we have tried.
Before you decide what chainsaw you would like to buy, there are a few important factors you should consider first.
Petrol Vs Battery Powered
Think about whether you’d prefer a petrol or battery-powered chainsaw. Petrol chainsaws always have a continuous supply of fuel, meaning they are ideal for both commercial and home use.
One drawback of using a petrol-powered chainsaw, however, is that they tend to be very loud, are quite heavy, and emit exhaust fumes. They are typically more expensive and messier, too.
Battery-powered chainsaws, on the other hand, are lighter, quieter to run, have no emissions, and are generally more compact for easier control. And, to start, you just need to press a button, rather than pulling a chord.
However, batteries run out and do not deliver as much power to the chainsaw’s motor. Therefore, they are not as efficient at cutting thicker branches and working on as many trees as petrol types.
If you hold a chainsaw for a long period of time, you will eventually suffer from fatigue. And, the heavier it is, the sooner you will feel this.
Lightweight chainsaws are easier to take up trees and handle. And, lightweight top handle chainsaws have better manoeuvrability, but this can be down to its particular design.
Handle And Hoisting Clip
Some chainsaws come with anti-vibration handles that fit comfortably in your hands. Therefore, you can have an easier time working on trees without too much tension or movement in your hands.
Moreover, you’ll need to free your hands at some point, so you will need a place to lift and hang your chainsaw. This is where hoisting clips come in useful, as they allow you to attach your machine to your belt or a rope so you can free your hands for other work.
A chain bar can measure from as little as 12 inches all the way to 36 inches in length (sometimes, even longer than this). That being said, limbing chainsaws rarely exceed 16 inches as they are made to be lightweight and compact.
The chain’s size is important in determining how thick a log is that needs to be cut. All in all, the chain bar needs to be at least two inches longer than the thickness of the wood being cut. So, if you’re limbing, pruning, or cutting small trees, a 12 to 14-inch chain bar would be ideal.
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