Everyone has a hidden handyman in them. But when these individuals get tools, such as chainsaws, the handyman could easily come alive.
When it comes to cutting down trees, pruning, or milling, knowing How to Use a Chainsaw Safely is what you should read up first.
It’s a good thing to know how to cater for your environment or household with a chainsaw. But if it happens that you don’t have the right info on how to use your chainsaw, refrain from using it, at least for now.
How to Start a Chainsaw
Before learning how to use a chainsaw safely we need to learn first how to start a chainsaw, Follow these steps as a newbie to prep your chainsaw for use;
Place on solid ground
Placing the chainsaw on solid ground keeps you balanced before starting up the engine. It also limits the occurrence of any mishaps.
Place a foot on the top handle to keep the machine steady
Placing your foot on top of the machine ensures more support for your hand when you’re putting the chain saw on.
Start up the engine after holding on to the side/rear handle
Hold on to the second handle of your machine and start up the engine. After this, the hard part is over.
Place directly on the object you intend cutting
This could be tricky for newbies. It’s advised you begin with horizontal/vertical cuts to master the machine saw.
10 Steps on How to Use a Chainsaw Safely
1. Read the user manual
Knowing all the major instructions in the saw’s user manual keeps you safe and free from injuries. There are several recommendations, do's/don’ts that come with your new chainsaw. Follow the info religiously.
2. Use the Right Chainsaw
Just as there are different tools in almost any endeavor, there are different saws for various cutting jobs.
The universal recommendation is that your chainsaw should extend a few inches over the object you intend cutting.
3. Create Space for a Quick Exit
When you’re starting off as a beginner, the chances of getting hurt are realer than ever. Always ensure you give a few yards of space for a quick dash if things go south.
If you’re intent on cutting down a tree, calculate the point you think the tree will fall to and your escape route if it falls the other way.
However, never fell a tree if there are utility lines, vehicles, buildings and people within at-least two length of tree.
4. Perfect Your Cutting Stance
How you stand during cutting plays a role in how safe you are. Your cutting position should be balanced and you shouldn’t lean on the saw.
Applying pressure on the saw with your weight could get the saw cutting faster and lead to an accident.
5. Use the Right Blade on Your Saw
Choose the ideal blade depending on what you want to cut. There are lots of chain links that can be used for cutting some serious stuff.
There are also blades meant for wood and other objects easy to cut through. Using a wrong blade could cause the saw to bounce back, leading to an injury.
6. Ensure the Power Type of Your Chainsaw is catered to
Power determines a lot in engineering tools, and this can be truer in chainsaws. Chainsaws are built with varying powers.
These powers make it easier to cut through hard object effortlessly. So if you’re intent on using your chainsaw for the hard stuff, be sure the machine can deliver.
7. Check for Any Issues
Check for any issues that may affect the chainsaw’s operation. Check the oil gauge, fuel (gas saws), battery (cordless saws), distance (electronic saws), among others.
Also, check that the unit performs at its best. If there are mechanical issues, get the help of a technician to straighten things out.
8. Don’t Switch Your Cutting Position Too Steeply
Switching your cutting position to give a distinct cut could be deadly for a newbie. If your position changes all of a sudden, you may get the bar broken or worse.
Based on the speed with which the blade moves, objects could come flying back at you if the chain links aren’t solid.
9. Allow Your Machine to Cool After Use
Letting your machine cool off after use is vital. It keeps your engine fresh for the next use, and maintains its balance.
10. Don’t Allow the Tree to Lean on The Bar
When you’re cutting through a tree, or any other object for that matter, ensure it doesn’t rest on the blade. This is a dangerous situation that you just can’t deal with right now.
The chain links could fly off in any direction with the object clamping the chainsaw. You could get seriously injured or worse.
Tips to Keep Your Fingers Safe
Using anti-cut gloves keep your hands totally secure against any finger loss. When you’re operating your chainsaw with these gloves, ensure they’re properly worn to keep your hands safe.
Slip proof gloves are vital not only to your hands, but your entire body. These gloves make handling the gloves
Tips to Keep Your Torso/Legs Safe
Use Protective Shin Guards
As a novice to chainsaws, you may look a Native Indian in your attire, but you can’t be too safe. Shin guards protect you from limb loss if the chainsaw spirals out of control.
Maintain a Stance You Can Change Easily
When you’re making use of a chainsaw, it’s a fact that your chest is left unprotected. But that doesn’t mean there’s no protective measure you can employ.
The best thing to do is maintain a position that makes it easier to move away from the chainsaw should there be a bounce off.
The chances of your chainsaw rebounding are incredibly low, so you don’t have to be scared of this.
Use Cut-Proof Boots
Many construction site workers make use of a chainsaw only after putting on cut-proof boots. These boots protects your toes should the saw swing in the wrong direction.
How to Deal With Kickback
Kickback is one of the main causes of injury to the face or torso of an operator. It’s mainly caused by inexperience or a lack of focus.
Kickbacks mostly occur when the tip of the chainsaw meets up with a very sturdy object. Contact with such an object could cause the saw to bounce right back onto the face/torso of the operator. Serious injuries, if not fatal ones, could occur.
To deal with the problem of kickback has been widely debated, and many safety tips abound to keep operators safe. But what are the main steps to prevent kickback when using a chainsaw? Here they are;
Use a numb kickback chain
A numb kickback chain, or anti-kickback chain works by reducing the force with which the saw could kickback. If you’re very careful and alert, this chain could save you from serious injury.
Avoid using the danger zone
An experienced cutter will tell you that the most dangerous part of a chainsaw is the tip end of the bar.
To eliminate the chances of kickback, ensure your cuts are placed at the middle to the head end of the bar. This erases the chances of your saw flying back at you.
Use a chainsaw with a chain brake system
The chain brake helps the operator to prevent kickback. When the chainsaw moves rather awkwardly, the chain brake system will automatically reduce the speed of the bar to prevent a serious cut injury to the operator.
Don’t Use the Chainsaw without an Eye Guard
Eye guards protect your eyes from flying debris and other particles. With an eye guard properly worn, all you need to focus on is the chainsaw as your eyes are adequately catered for.
Don’t Downplay the Use of a Hard Hat
A hard hat could be the difference between you and an open head. These helmets protect your head from hard impact. They’re also quite slippery and resistant to chainsaw cuts.
Having a proper knowledge of how to use a chainsaws keeps you protected. As you progress with your chainsaw, ensure you keep the tips in this read close to heart.
They could be life-saving. Also, ensure you make use of standard equipment to prevent any accidents from using the wrong tools. Your protective equipment, accessories, and overall gear should be spot-on to prevent any adverse events.