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Which Way Does a Chain go on a Chainsaw?

We all know the struggle of having to replace a chain. It gets in the way of progress and can be a pain having to take your chainsaw apart and put it all back together. What’s an even bigger pain is getting everything put back together, trying to work with a backwards chain, and having to take your machine apart again.

Putting a chain on a chainsaw (like one of these found here) the right way is a rather important step in properly using your chainsaw. If you don’t get the chain on the right way, you will end up with a seemingly dull blade and have to take it all apart again to reverse the chain. So, let’s try to prevent this little mistake by putting the chain on the right way the first time.

Set The Bar

The easiest way to replace or correct a chain on a chainsaw after you’ve taken the machine apart is to start by reattaching the chain bar to the body of the chainsaw. Once attached, adjust the bar so it is not so long and the chain will fit more loosely and be easier to put on. If you don’t do this, you will be fighting the chain the entire time. After your bar is in place, it is time to mount your chain.

Check Blade Direction

The important part of mounting your chain is to make sure the blades are facing the right direction. Again, if the blades of the chain are not facing the correct way, you will think the blade is dull because it is cutting in the wrong direction. The correct direction for a blade to face is with the pointy edge of the blade teeth facing toward the way the blade rotates. Essentially, you want the pointy edges of the blades rotating on top of the chain bar, moving toward the tip of the bar, and away from the body of the machine. Now that you’ve got it going in the right direction rotate your chain and get it set in place.

Tighten the Blade

After you’ve rotated your chain and your drive links settled into place on the chain bar, it is time to tighten it so you can get back to work. Don’t over tighten your chain, but don’t under tighten it either. You want the perfect tension for the chain to rotate smoothly and for your safety as well. Once your machine is reassembled, it is time to go back to work with a new chain that’s facing the right way.

A chain facing the wrong direction on a chainsaw will put a damper on a hardworking day. Working with a chainsaw is good, hard work, don’t make it more difficult by not assembling your machine properly. Though it doesn’t take much time to reset or replace a chain, it is always so much easier to just do it right the first time.  All types of chainsaws (even these) will eventually need their chains replaced, so become familiar with the process.

So, to make sure you’re doing it right the first time, every time. Check your blade direction and get back to work!

About the author

Mark Kelly

Hi, I'm Mark the owner of Yard Care Gurus. I love to be outside working on my lawn, planning my next project. I created this website to help people like you find the best products for yard care and great advice. Thanks for stopping by!

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