The 5 Best 18-Inch Chainsaws of 2024

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By Jake Hill

Chainsaws

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Deciding which chainsaw to buy is no easy decision – there’s a lot to consider, whether you’re a professional or just want to use the tool in your backyard. You’ll need to think about what tasks you’ll need it to perform, how long you need it to last, and any other specific needs you may have.

When shopping for the best 18-inch chainsaw in particular, you’re probably buying it for a specific project or type of job on your farm, job site, or backyard – a large, 18-inch bar is better suited for medium to larger jobs.

Our top five 18-inch chainsaws are pretty broad in performance and features, from the lightweight and eco-friendly EGO Power+ CS1804 to the more rugged and powerful STIHL Farm Boss MS 271. This list contains both gas chainsaws and battery-powered options, so there’s possible perfection for all different needs.

But one fact applies to all of them – each of these chainsaws is a serious competitor worth considering. The only two questions are which is our top pick, and which is yours?

ImageProductOur RatingPrice
Best Overall
STIHL Farm Boss MS 271 18 inch

STIHL Farm Boss MS 271 18 inch

  • Durable and reliable
  • Comfortable despite the weight
  • Emits minimal exhaust fume
10
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Editor's Choice
EGO Power+ CS1804 18 inch

EGO Power+ CS1804 18 inch

  • Highly affordable
  • Comfortable design
  • Very easy to start and use
9.5
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Best Value For Money
Craftsman S185 18 inch

Craftsman S185 18 inch

  • Highly affordable
  • Comfortable design
  • Very easy to start and use
9
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Best Seller
Stihl MS 250 18 inch

Stihl MS 250 18 inch

  • Reliable
  • Fuel efficiency
  • Very low-maintenance
9
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Budget Option
Troy-Bilt TB4218 18 inch

Troy-Bilt TB4218 18 inch

  • Very affordable
  • Easy to use and maintain
  • Comfortable grip
9
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The 5 Best 18-Inch Chainsaws of 2023

Here are what we think to be the best 18-inch chainsaws of 2023 to help you make your decision.

STIHL Farm Boss MS 271 18 inch

Best Overall
STIHL Farm Boss MS 271 18 inch
10/10Our Score
  • Durable and reliable
  • Comfortable despite the weight
  • Emits minimal exhaust fume
  • Heavy

This powerhouse of a gas chainsaw by STIHL is the new and improved version of the already popular MS 270 and has been voted our best overall option for a good reason.

The STIHL Farm Boss MS 271 is an improved version of the MS 270 because it has the same highly efficient engine but with 20% more running time to be able to spend more time working on each task you have for the day.

This chainsaw is loaded with technology and features to make all your jobs easier – such as an anti-vibration system, simplified fuel and oil caps, a pre-separation filtration system, and more.

The tool is designed for efficiency: the air filtration system will ensure that the air filter lasts far longer without needing replacement, and STIHL has cut exhaust emissions in half when comparing this piece of equipment to the MS 270, making it more eco-friendly too.

While the Farm Boss MS 271 is relatively heavy, weighing 12 lbs, STIHL had comfort in mind when designing it to counter this weight. The front handle has a secure grip and is ergonomically angled, and the starting handle is easy to work with.

This tool is famous for being easy to start, easy to use, and easy to maintain. Removing, replacing, and cleaning various parts of the equipment has been made simple through clever design and convenient placement of parts.

The MS 271 is also durable and reliable and will last you for years regardless of what you’re using your tools for.

While you might feel hesitant about this chainsaw due to its weight, you’ll find it’s worth the extra weight because of its power. The engine’s potency helps increase the speed of your work and shortens the usage time, so this is perfect for even larger jobs, which is what you’ll need the 18-inch bar for.

However, as with any equipment, it’s essential to be aware of potential challenges and problems and how to deal with them.

EGO Power+ CS1804 18 inch

Editor's Choice
EGO Power+ CS1804 18 inch
9.5/10Our Score
  • Highly affordable
  • Comfortable design
  • Very easy to start and use
  • Tends to leak oil

Our editor’s choice on this list of machines is the EGO Power+ CS1804 18-inch battery chainsaw. Not only does this chainsaw look good, but it performs like a workhorse too.

With the equivalent power of a 45CC gas chainsaw, this battery-powered tool offers the power and performance you need but with half of the noise and none of the fuel emissions. It’s more environmentally friendly this way and better to work with.

Unfortunately, you’ll need to specifically purchase an EGO Power+ 56V ARC Lithium battery to work with your chainsaw. However, when working with this battery, you’ll get a whopping 300 clean and efficient cuts on a 4×4.

Of course, it has an 18-inch bar and long-lasting chain, which offers the wide cut you need and allows for larger jobs to be handled by this tool on the farm, ranch, or in your yard. Even larger branches, stumps, and tall trees can be taken down and easily cut to size.

One excellent and unique feature of the EGO Power+ chainsaw is its bright LED lights illuminating your work area. This allows you to work safely, even in poorly lit areas and at night.

Finally, alongside all its great features and immense power, this chainsaw is also durable and long-lasting. You’ll be able to use it for years without hassle or too much maintenance.

Craftsman S185 18 inch

Budget Option
Craftsman S185 18 inch
9/10Our Score
  • Highly affordable
  • Comfortable design
  • Very easy to start and use
  • Short lifespan

The next contender is another gas-powered saw, the Craftsman S185 gas chainsaw. It features a 42CC engine with great power for the price you’re paying, making it a great value-for-money purchase.

The bar is also designed to produce minimal kickback, making it comfortable to use. It cuts cleanly through even tougher wood, although it isn’t the most durable tool on the market.

However, it is very popular for its ease-of-use. The Craftsman S185 uses Easy Start technology for a quick and simple pull-start to get your equipment running in no time at all. It’s also comfortable to hold and use for prolonged periods.

The full-wrap aluminum handle is cushioned for comfort and safety, and the tool uses a 3-point anti-vibration system to maintain balance and provide a comfortable operation.

The design is improved even further by additional valuable features like the automatic oiler, chain brake, and easy access to the air filter and spark plug to maintain and clean your equipment easily.

The low kickback and easy maintenance make this option more cost-effective and appealing for various other reasons. Bucking spikes add greater control for more demanding jobs, and the automatic oiler keeps your bar and chain in good condition without any effort.

As a bonus, this chainsaw is also sold with a heavy-duty carrying case that you can store your equipment in to protect it when you’re not using it and easily transport it around your site.

One drawback users have noted is that this chainsaw doesn’t typically last as long as some of its competitors. Despite this, it works exceptionally well during its lifespan and can be used to complete even some heavy-duty jobs, thanks to its power and 18-inch bar and chain.

Stihl MS 250 18 inch

Best Value For Money
Stihl MS 250 18 inch
9/10Our Score
  • Reliable
  • Fuel efficiency
  • Very low-maintenance
  • Not for beginners 

Next, the STIHL MS 250 18 in. 45.4CC gas chainsaw is a super powerful and versatile tool that has become a best-selling chainsaw for a good reason. With its robust build, high-performance engine, and advanced features, this chainsaw is another top choice for both professional and amateur users.

One of the standout features of the MS 250 is its powerful engine. It gives the chainsaw plenty of power to cut through even tougher pieces of wood, which alongside the 18-inch bar, makes it a good choice for bigger jobs.

It is also designed to be fuel-efficient, so you can use the chainsaw for extended periods without worrying about running out of fuel. You can easily work for longer and cheaper using this saw.

The MS 250 also features a professional-grade anti-vibration system. This system reduces vibrations by up to 50%, making the chainsaw more comfortable to use for longer periods.

This can also help reduce fatigue, further allowing you to work for more extended periods of time without experiencing discomfort or pain.

Another great feature to consider is the easy-to-use air filtration system. The air filter is designed to be easily accessible, which makes cleaning and replacement a breeze. Your day-to-day maintenance on this chainsaw will be minimal, and it’s also less likely that damage will occur.

In terms of long-term maintenance, there is also a pre-separation air filtration system, which helps to reduce the amount of dirt and debris that enters the filter. This extends the filter’s lifespan and improves the chainsaw’s performance over many years.

In terms of safety features, the MS 250 has been designed to be both reliable and safe for users of all abilities.

A major safety feature is the quick-stop chain brake which stops the chain in less than a second if the chainsaw encounters a sudden jolt or impact. This can help to prevent accidents and injuries while using your equipment.

Overall, if you’re looking for an all-around winner, this chainsaw packs a punch and has many great features for just about any job you might need it for.

Troy-Bilt TB4218 18 inch

Best Value For Money
Troy-Bilt TB4218 18 inch
9/10Our Score
  • Very affordable
  • Easy to use and maintain
  • Comfortable grip
  • Not suited to larger jobs

Lastly, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly chainsaw that can still handle most cutting tasks around your farm or property, the Troy-Bilt TB4218 18-inch 42 cc gas chainsaw might be your best bet.

One of the most noticeable features of this chainsaw is its size. The 18-inch bar and chain are perfect for cutting through small to medium-sized trees, branches, and logs.

With a 42 cc engine, the chainsaw also has plenty of power to tackle tough cutting jobs, making it a great choice despite the low price.

The TB4218 is designed to be easy to use, with an ergonomic handle and a lightweight design. The chainsaw weighs 13.5 pounds, which makes it relatively easy to maneuver and possible to use for extended periods. The handle is also designed to reduce vibrations, which can typically be a major source of fatigue and discomfort.

Another great feature of this chainsaw is its automatic oiling system. The chainsaw automatically lubricates the chain and bar, which helps to extend the life of these components and ensures smooth operation.

The oil reservoir is also easy to refill, so you can keep the chainsaw running smoothly without much extra hassle, making it quick and easy to use and maintain.

Like many of its competitors, its also been designed with safety in mind. It features an inertia-activated chain brake to recognize a sharp impact and protect you from potential injuries on the job.

Overall, the Troy-Bilt TB4218 18-inch 42 cc gas chainsaw is a great budget-friendly option for anyone who needs a reliable and powerful chainsaw for cutting tasks around their property.

How to Choose the Best 18-Inch Chainsaw

When purchasing a piece of equipment like a chainsaw, there’s a lot you need to think about to be able to make the right decision.

The make and model you choose will depend heavily on the kind of work you’ll need the equipment for, how long you plan to use it, and other specific needs and preferences you might have.

Our reviews should give you a clear idea of what’s available, but the following list will help you understand what key characteristics you should be looking for in an 18-inch chainsaw.

1. Power Source

First of all, consider the power source of the chainsaw you’re looking at and whether it aligns with your needs, preference, and values.

Often, people who are more environmentally conscious will opt for a battery-powered chainsaw like the EGO Power+ CS1804 because of the fact that it’s the more eco-friendly option. It doesn’t emit any gas fumes and is also quieter, making it better with regard to noise pollution.

However, a gas-powered chainsaw like the Farm Boss MS 271 is typically known for being more powerful than a battery-powered competitor. There are, of course, exceptions to this rule.

As you can see, this decision is two-fold and will eventually come down to personal preference. If you have experience with gas-powered chainsaws, you might want to stick to what you know or deliberately try something new.

2. Engine and Speed

The next characteristic to look out for in a chainsaw is how speedy and powerful it is. The jobs you plan on using it for will help you choose just how much power you need.

Smaller, at-home jobs in the yard, such as cleaning up after a storm, maintaining your trees, and chopping wood for the fire, won’t require ferocious power. In this case, something like the Troy-Bilt TB4218  will do the job perfectly.

However, if you’re looking for something stronger to tackle farm or construction work, you might want to look for a more powerful engine, such as the one found in the STIHL Farm Boss MS 271.

3. Comfort

If you’re inexperienced with a chainsaw, or if you know you’ll be using it often and for long periods, then comfort and ease of use should be your top priority.

Chainsaw work is already pretty demanding, and this can be made ten times worse when you’re using a heavy and uncomfortable piece of machinery.

If you know you’ll need to keep the chainsaw running for a while, or if you need it to maneuver into trickier spots and positions, then try to select a more comfort-driven tool like the Craftsman S185, which weighs a little less than competitors and also has a cushioned full handle wrap for easier grip.

4. Safety

Your physical safety should always be a concern. Make sure that you’re familiar with the tools you’re using at all times, have some level of experience before picking up a new piece of equipment, and wear protective gear on a job site.

This is your first line of defense! Your second line of defense should be a tool designed with safety in mind. Some chainsaws (and other tools) have useful safety features that will help protect you from the various dangers associated with the job at hand.

One such tool is the Troy-Bilt TB4218, an excellent choice for various reasons.

5. Price

Finally, you need to consider your budget and make sure you purchase a tool that’s within your means.

As our budget option, the Troy-Bilt TB4218 is once again coming into play since it offers a great piece of equipment for a meager and manageable price. This is the chainsaw to go for if you have a job that needs to be done but very limited funds in order to do so.

However, our value-for-money option, the Craftsman S185, is perfect if you have a bigger job that needs doing, which the Troy-Bilt just won’t handle. The Craftsman offers extra power and speed but for an excellent price, and you’ll be getting a great piece of equipment for what you’re paying.

5/5 - (6 votes)
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