How to start a chainsaw
AuthorHusqvarna Chainsaw Academy
August 20, 2019
Last editedAugust 20, 2019
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Before starting your chainsaw, be sure to read the instruction manual for your saw since controls may vary by saw model. And observe regulations in your area.
The chain brake should be activated when you start the chainsaw. Many chainsaw models can be started in what is known as half-throttle position. The chain can then rotate if the chain brake is not activated. There are two safe positions to start your chainsaw: on the ground or with the saw between your legs.
How to start a cold engine on the ground
Activate the chain brake.
If the saw is equipped with Air Purge/fuel pump, press the bulb (prime) a few times until the fuel becomes visible and enters the carburettor.
Activate the choke and (on certain models) press the decompression control.
Stand with your right foot in the rear handle and keep a firm grip on the front handle with your left hand.
Pull the starter handle with your right hand. Repeat until the engine fires. Push the choke (half-throttle) and pull again until the saw starts.
Accelerate (rev) so that the engine idles and then release the chain brake.
Start the chainsaw between your legs
Follow the steps described above for “How to start a cold engine on the ground” but instead do this in step 4: Place the rear handle between your left thigh and behind your right knee. Hold the front handle firmly with your left hand.
Starting a hot engine
The chainsaw starts without the choke when the engine is hot. Follow the instructions above, but omit the points relating to the choke. If the engine is difficult to start, apply half-throttle. You access the half-throttle function by first fully activating the choke. Then move the control back.
Always inspect these functions everytime you start to use the chainsaw:
Do not use the chainsaw if any of these features are nonfunctional.
Inertia function inspection
The engine should be shut down. Hold the saw with the guide bar over a stump or other stable object. The distance between the stump and the guide bar is dependent on the chainsaw model and guide bar length.
Release the front handle and allow gravity to bring the chainsaw down, rotating around the rear handle, towards the stump.
When the guide bar hits the stump, the chain brake should be triggered.
Chain brake inspection
Start the saw. Hold the chainsaw firmly by the front and rear handles.
Accelerate and then release the throttle.
Activate the chain brake by turning your left wrist towards the kickback guard. Do not let go of the front handle.
The chain must stop immediately.
If the saw is fitted with TrioBrake™, repeat but now activate the rear brake guard by moving your right wrist upwards until it reaches and activates the brake. The chain must stop immediately.
Chain lubrication inspection
Start the chainsaw. Hold the saw over a stump and rev up the engine.
Chain lubrication is working if there is a line of oil left on the stump.
August 20, 2019
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