How to Store Chainsaws Safely (Complete Step-By-Step Guide)

Regardless of how much you spend on your chainsaw, proper storage is essential for extending its life. Whether it’s a budget-friendly model or a high-end one, taking the time to store it correctly can make a big difference in how long it lasts.

Proper storage includes keeping your chainsaw in a dry, well-ventilated location protected from the elements, such as rain, dust, and extreme temperatures. It also includes cleaning and lubricating the chainsaw after each use and performing regular maintenance to ensure it runs smoothly and efficiently.

Following the proper storage guideline ensures that your chainsaw lasts many years rather than just a few minutes of use. With that in mind, let’s dive right into the proper storage techniques and best practices for keeping your chainsaw safe.

8 Easy Steps to Safely Store Your Chainsaw

Table of Contents

Proper chainsaw storage is essential to ensure your tool lasts and stays safe to use. Let’s break down the 8 steps to keep your chainsaw stored safely.

Step 1

First, you must ensure you’re in a well-ventilated area before you begin. Next, drain the carburetor to prevent the diaphragms from sticking together. Next, drain the fuel from the chainsaw and clean it.

Some people also choose to add a fuel stabilizer to prevent fuel from forming harmful substances. In this case, run the chainsaw for three minutes after adding the stabilizer to distribute it throughout the fuel system.

Step 2

Once you’ve drained the fuel from your chainsaw, remove the chain and guide bar. Clean the drive gears, chain, and bar thoroughly, removing all dirt, grime, and wood chips.

  • Note: if you’re planning on changing or sharpening the chain, now is the perfect time to do so.

Step 3

You can store the chainsaw without the bar and chain, but in this case, you’ll need to apply some protective oil.

Reassemble the chain and guide bar, making sure to adjust the chain, so it snaps back into place when pulled slightly. Once everything is back in place, apply protective oil to both.

Step 4

The next step is to clean your air breather with soapy water and then dry it with compressed air.

However, you may need to consult your owner’s manual for the proper cleaning instructions, as it may vary depending on the manufacturer.

Step 5

Removing or replacing spark plugs can be tricky for beginners. Once the spark plugs are removed, add about one teaspoon of 2-cycle engine oil into the opening of the spark plug. If you need to replace them, refer to your owner’s manual to find the appropriate spark plugs for your chainsaw.

This is also the perfect time to inspect the spark plugs for signs of wear or problems, such as sooty electrodes, which can indicate that combustion is not completing, potentially indicating a problem with the fuel mixture.

Step 6

The next step can be a bit challenging for some, which is cleaning or replacing your air filter, if necessary.

Step 7

This is a very simple yet crucial step in chainsaw storage, yet many people tend to overlook it. All you need to do is go around the chainsaw and tighten all the screws and bolts.

Step 8

Finally, proper storage is essential for maintaining the longevity of your chainsaw. Keep it in a dry, shaded area, and consider using a protective case to keep it in good condition.

Bonus Tips to Store Your Chainsaw Properly

As mentioned above, storing your chainsaw properly is essential to ensure its longevity and performance. Not only will it protect your investment, but it will also ensure your safety when using it.

Here are some bonus tips to help you store your chainsaw correctly:

  • Clean and dry your chainsaw before storing it to prevent rust and corrosion.
  • Keep your chainsaw away from heat sources, such as a furnace or water heater, to prevent warping or melting.
  • Hang your chainsaw vertically, with the bar and chain facing downward, to prevent oil from draining out of the guide bar and chain.
  • Use a chainsaw storage bag or protective cover to keep your chainsaw clean and free from dust, debris, and other harmful elements.
  • Use a chain oiler to keep the chain lubricated before storing it to prevent rusting.
  • Drain the fuel tank before storing it, as stale fuel can gum up the carburetor.
  • Keep the chainsaw in a locked cabinet or out of reach of children and others who are not trained to use it.
  • Make sure the chainsaw is switched off and unplugged before storing it.
  • Keep the chainsaw’s owner manual in a safe place for easy reference.
  • If you’re storing your chainsaw for an extended period, removing the battery or disconnecting the spark plug is recommended to prevent damage or leakage.
  • Store your chainsaw in a dry, protected area, such as a tool shed or garage.
  • Consider investing in a chainsaw stand or rack to keep your chainsaw in a stable, upright position.
  • Ensure the chainsaw’s safety features, such as the handguard, are in good working order before storing it.
  • Make sure the chainsaw’s chains and guides are sharpened or replaced if needed before storing it.
  • Use a rust inhibitor spray or oil to protect the chainsaw from rusting during storage.

By following these tips, you can ensure that your chainsaw stays in good working condition and is ready to use when needed.


Is it OK to store chainsaws vertically?

While hanging it upside down is the safest option, you can still store it vertically so it won’t be exposed to dust, rust, or other harmful elements.

How do you store a chainsaw when not in use?

Outdoor storage can significantly damage your chainsaw due to moisture or extreme temperatures.

Instead, keep your chainsaw in a dry location with proper ventilation to ensure its longevity.

Can you store a chainsaw indoors?

Yes, you can store a chainsaw indoors. In fact, indoor storage is the best practice to increase the longevity of your chainsaw.

Should a chainsaw be stored on its side?

When storing your chainsaw, it’s important to be mindful of its position, as it can be more likely to leak if it is not placed properly.

To avoid leakage, you should store it with the bar flat against the ground, and if necessary, you can store it on its side. However, make sure to empty the oil reservoir before doing so.

Can I leave fuel in my chainsaw?

It’s generally safe to leave mixed fuel in your chainsaw for a short period, such as a few days or a month, without experiencing any issues.

Why do people put their chainsaw bar upside down?

Reversing the direction of the bar can help distribute wear and tear more evenly, and using it upside down from time to time will help keep your cuts precise and efficient.

Should you let a chainsaw cool down?

A safe way to use a chainsaw is to always allow it to cool down before refueling. The heat from the engine could cause the fuel to ignite, so it’s best to wait 10-15 minutes before adding fuel.

What is the life expectancy of a chainsaw?

A well-built chainsaw can last at least 10 years iproperly cared forly. Some people may even have their chainsaws for 20-30 years.

How often should you start a chainsaw?

Starting your chainsaw at least twice a year serves a dual purpose. Not only does it prevent the engine from seizing, but it also helps you become more familiar with starting the chainsaw so that you don’t flood the engine due to a lack of familiarity when you need it.

How loose is too loose for a chainsaw?

The chainsaw chain should be slightly loose on the guide bar when it’s appropriately tensioned but not so loose that you can pull the drive links out of the bar nose.

Can you leave a chainsaw in the rain?

Electric chainsaws are not safe to use in wet conditions like rain. On the other hand, gas-powered chainsaws can usually handle wet conditions.

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( Licensed Chainsaw Professional )

Jake is a chainsaws expert with a wealth of knowledge and experience in the field. He is a licensed professional by the National Chainsaw Program, which attests to his skills and expertise in the safe and efficient use of chainsaws.