How To Cut A Tree Down With A Chainsaw?

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How To Cut A Tree Down With A Chainsaw

This is a tutorial on how to cut a tree down with a chainsaw. By following this guide, you will be able to cut down a tree with ease and make it easier for yourself to get the job done.

When it comes to felling a tree, using a chainsaw is one of the most common and effective methods. However, it requires careful planning, knowledge of safety precautions, and a proper understanding of the techniques involved. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can confidently tackle the task of cutting down a tree with a chainsaw.

Choosing The Right Chainsaw

Choosing The Right Chainsaw

Before starting, it’s crucial to select the appropriate chainsaw for the job. Factors such as the size and type of tree, your experience level, and the available budget should all be taken into consideration. Ensure that the chainsaw is in good working condition and equipped with a sharp chain.

Safety Precautions

Safety should always be a top priority when working with a chainsaw. Wear protective gear, including a helmet, goggles, ear defenders, gloves, and steel-toed boots. Familiarize yourself with the chainsaw’s safety features and read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

Assessing The Tree

Before cutting the tree, assess its condition and identify any potential hazards. Look for signs of disease, decay, or structural weakness. Determine the tree’s lean and choose a suitable direction for it to fall, taking into account surrounding structures, power lines, and other obstacles.

Preparing The Work Area

Clear the area around the tree of any obstacles and ensure there is enough space for the tree to fall safely. Establish escape routes and communicate them to anyone assisting you. Remove any loose branches or debris that could interfere with your work.

Making The Initial Cuts

Making The Initial Cuts

Start by making a horizontal cut, or undercut, on the side of the tree facing the direction of the fall. This cut should reach about one-third of the tree’s diameter. Next, create a diagonal cut, or back cut, slightly above the undercut, leaving a hinge that will help control the tree’s fall.

Controlling The Direction Of The Fall

To guide the tree’s fall, use wedges or felling levers to open up the back cut and influence the direction. Apply gradual pressure to guide the tree as it begins to lean. Always maintain a safe distance and be prepared to retreat along the established escape routes.

Completing The Felling

Once the tree starts to fall, immediately retreat to a safe distance. The falling tree may create a backswing or kickback, which can be dangerous. Allow the tree to settle on the ground, ensuring it does not roll or cause damage to nearby structures.

Dealing With The Tree After Felling

Dealing With The Tree After Felling

After the tree has fallen, carefully inspect the area for any potential hazards. Remove branches and limbs from the trunk, working systematically from the base upwards. Cut the trunk into manageable sections for easier handling and disposal.

Tips For Efficiency And Safety

  • Regularly maintain and sharpen your chainsaw to ensure optimal performance.
  • Take breaks when needed to prevent fatigue and maintain focus.
  • Avoid cutting trees alone, especially when dealing with larger specimens.
  • Consider enlisting the help of a professional arborist for complex or high-risk situations.

Common Mistakes To Avoid

  • Neglecting to assess the tree’s condition and potential hazards.
  • Using a dull or improperly maintained chainsaw.
  • Failing to establish clear escape routes and communicate them to others.
  • Underestimating the importance of proper safety gear.
  • Rushing or attempting to fell a tree without sufficient planning.


Can I cut a tree without a chainsaw?

While it’s possible to cut down a small tree using alternative tools such as an axe or handsaw, a chainsaw is generally considered the most efficient and effective tool for the job, especially when dealing with larger trees.

Do I need a permit to cut down a tree?

The regulations regarding tree removal permits vary depending on your location and the type of tree. It’s advisable to check with your local authorities or consult an arborist to determine if a permit is required before proceeding with tree removal.

How long does it take to cut down a tree?

The time required to cut down a tree depends on various factors, including the tree’s size, complexity, and your experience level. It can range from a few minutes for smaller trees to several hours for larger ones or more challenging situations.

What is the best time to cut down a tree?

While trees can be cut down at any time of the year, some seasons may offer advantages. Winter, when trees are dormant, can make the cleanup process easier, while summer allows for better visibility of the tree’s structure. It’s generally recommended to avoid cutting trees during periods of high wind or extreme weather conditions.

Should I hire a professional for tree removal?

If you lack the necessary experience, equipment, or if the tree poses a high risk, it’s advisable to hire a professional arborist. They have the expertise to assess the situation, safely fell the tree, and handle any potential hazards that may arise during the process.


The best way to cut down a tree with a chainsaw is to use a guide bar and a chain saw blade that is the right size for the tree. Make sure to wear protective gear, including a safety helmet, goggles, and a chainsaw-specific safety vest. Keep your arms and legs well-coordinated while cutting to avoid accidents. When cutting the tree down, aim the chainsaw at the ground and keep your back straight to avoid injury. If the tree is too large or heavy to be cut down with a chainsaw, you may need to call a professional.

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