Stihl MS 180C Review: Is it worth buying in 2024?

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By Jake Hill


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The woodwork in a yard calls for dealing with thin and short trees. It is optional to use a heavy-duty chainsaw for such simple tasks. This is why lighter options such as the Stihl MS 180 exist. This Saw has been around for over 20 years. Such a long run can indicate its reliability in what it does.

Please read our blog for more information on the Stihl MS180C evaluation. We’re going through all of its features and characteristics. We will also give additional information on the user experience and feed. So stay tuned!

Stihl MS 180C Review

This chainsaw made its debut in 2002. It is made to meet the needs of occasional users or homeowners with light tasks. Aside from removing shrubs and small trees, the Saw efficiently de-limbs and bucks thin logs.

Now, it is time to know everything about this machine:

Construction Quality & Material 

The Stihl MS180C falls into the category of cheap gas chainsaws. So, it is not possible to be made of expensive metals like magnesium. The casing of this Saw is 100% durable and reinforced plastic. This material allows for increased maneuverability and comfortable hold for long hours.

The engine’s internal components are made of metal, such as the cylinder, piston, clutch, and other essential parts. Also, some features are made of plastic, such as the spark plug. Remember that the chain and bar of the Stihl ms180 are made of steel. 

A noteworthy point in the quality matter is that this Saw is made in the U.S. The product has a high-quality finish and a decent appearance. However, the parts used for making this machine are not only from the U.S. They are imported from other countries too.

1. Power source 

This Saw is a gasoline-powered chainsaw. For ideal operation, this saw needs the proper oil-fuel mixture. The Stihl ms180 adheres to the rule of a 50:1 fuel ratio, just like the rest of Stihl gas saws.

2. Engine capacity 

This machine comes with a small engine. So, you should not expect high numbers in terms of engine displacement. This engine offers a capacity of 31.8cc 

3. Engine power 

A small engine like this one is expected to generate little power. It comes with a moderate range of power. This saw offers 2.0 bhp. 

4. Powerhead weight

One of the best things about this machine is its weight. When this saw is unarmed and hungry, it weighs 4.2 kilograms ( 9.3 pounds). So, it remains lightweight with the extra weight of accessories and fluids. Even a couple hundred grams won’t be a significant increase in weight.

5. Compatible bar sizes

This chainsaw is compatible with small guide bars. The manufacturer recommends a 16-inch bar as the maximum guide bar length. It can go well with a shorter bar for removing thinner limbs that do not exceed 25 cm (10 inches) in width. The Saw is compatible with 12″ and 14″ bars.

6. Fuel Capacity

This small chainsaw comes with a small fuel tank. It can only hold up to 8.5 ounces of the right gasoline type. This is nearly half the capacity of the Stihl MS 261.

However, there is a great plus to this tank. It is transparent, so you can easily determine the right time to refuel. There would be no need to open the tank to check the fuel levels constantly.

7. Chain oil capacity

larger oiler spares you the trouble of frequent refilling. But it would be best if you did not look for this here. The Saw comes with a small chain oiling reservoir. The capacity of this oiler is only 4.9 ounces.

However, the machine comes with an automatic oiler. This feature makes you forget entirely about manual chain lubrication. Just keep an eye on the chain lubricant usage.

Also, the oil tank in this Saw is translucent as well. This makes you able to monitor the oil while running the machine.

8. STIHL Easy2Start

This chainsaw is equipped with the Easy2start feature. This option facilitates the start of the engine without much effort from pulling the rope. The advanced starting technology relies on decompressing the combustion chamber while trying to start the motor.

9. Side Chain tensioner

A small chainsaw like this one won’t cut when the chain is not tightened correctly. Repeating the tightening routine more frequently comes naturally with constant use. Traditional chainsaws require removing the machine’s side panel to access the tensioner.

But this chainsaw comes with this modern chain tightening method. This way, you will do this task efficiently and quickly without using any tools.

10. IntelliCarb compensating carburetor 

This is one characteristic that makes it an excellent choice for winter operations. This technology reduces the risk of carb icing when it is freezing out there. This carburetor issue is bothersome for many users.

Also, this technology makes adjusting the air and fuel ratio an automatic process. Furthermore, this smart carburetor will keep drawing in the necessary air for proper combustion even when the air filter is partially clogged.

11. Anti-vibration system

The advanced STIHL anti-vibration system is found in many of its models. This feature is essential for reducing the operator’s fatigue and discomfort. It reduces the feeling of vibrations in your grip. This way, you can hold the Saw for extended hours without issues.

12. Increased safety 

Kickbacks are among the most severe risks of using these outdoor power tools. This is why you can rely on this chainsaw to lessen the likelihood of these hazards. The Stihl ms180c comes with an advanced chain brake system. It forces the chain to stop in almost no time. 

Moreover, this chainsaw comes with bumper spikes. These sharp metal dogs allow the chain to rest on the wood. Spikes are efficient at preventing kickbacks and enhancing the outcome of any bucking operation.


Many users think that this lightweight machine could be more powerful. However, regarding power and performance, the Stihl MS 180 exceeds expectations. It has an excellent power-to-weight ratio higher than many other chainsaws in higher categories. The Stihl MS 180c comes with a 3 kg/kW ratio.

However, this does not qualify the Saw for cutting thick trees or even chopping firewood. It is quite powerful for what it is made for. This means it will quickly and efficiently cut tree limbs or remove shrubs. It is a valuable addition to your chainsaw collection but won’t be the star player. 

Stihl MS 180C Reviews: What Do People Say?

Stihl MS 180c has collected various positive reviews among different types of users. Since day one, this chainsaw has targeted personal users and homeowners with small properties. Until this moment, this Saw remains in the Stihl catalog. This means that it has been attracting operators for over 2 decades. 

User Feedback

On Stihl’s official website, you can find over 1100 reviews. This Saw got an overall rating on the same site of 4.2 stars out of 5. Moreover, the vast majority of reviews have given it 5 stars. This means there are over 760 verified users. 

Users liked that it was lightweight and had sufficient power for what it was made for. They also appreciate the ease of starting and the durability of its parts. For some users, this chainsaw made their routine tree pruning tasks easier and more time-saving. 

One of the things users did not like about this Saw is that its chain gets loose more often. This might be associated with improper use of the chain. You might be trying to cut thicker branches or logs with it. 

 Furthermore, they complained about the frequent need to refill the oiler. This has nothing to do with the tank’s low capacity, but there is an issue with the oil pump. If you have this problem, you should buy a new oiler to eliminate it.

Product Satisfaction

All in all, this chainsaw has gathered many more positive reviews than negative ones. Different generations of users have purchased this Saw for its reputation and reliable performance. 

The vast majority of users liked the lightweight design and its ultimate maneuverability. Even those dissatisfied with the machine praised its portability, small design, and ease of use.

Customer Service

The Stihl MS 180c is available in Stihl’s current catalog and as a second-hand item on various websites. A used chainsaw won’t qualify you to get the same kind of customer support as the buyer of a new machine. You should get your Saw from a reputable local dealer if you want reliable support.

In terms of warranty, Stihl MS 180c comes with a 2-year coverage. This applies for domestic uses only. However, you can expect only a one-year guarantee if you plan to use it for professional purposes. 

As for the return policy, you will find the company offering a 7-day return guarantee. This is valid only if you return the Saw in its original shape and without filled tanks or accessories.

Should You buy the Stihl MS 180C?

The Stihl MS 180c is a compact chainsaw with decent performance in small tree removal. It is simple to start and maintain without many steps or much effort. It is not meant for cutting hardwood of any size. However, it will quickly remove a thin tree or dead branches.

This inexpensive chainsaw comes with a low Displacement 2-mix engine. Engine power, on the other hand, is quite decent. This explains the great power-to-weight ratio that enables the Saw to cut quickly and efficiently. It is not pairable with longer bars as the maximum length is 16″.

It is the right fit for you if you have a small property with small trees. Otherwise, it won’t be beneficial.

Stihl MS 180C is an excellent chainsaw for light woodwork. It can de-limb thin trees and branches as well as small yards. It is efficient for prolonged use without excessive vibration or becoming heavy. Its lightweight and advanced features make it an ideal option for non-pros who like to clear their properties.

5/5 - (6 votes)