6 Best Small Gas Powered Chainsaws of 2021

Last update: 2021-09-26

After more than 100 hours of research – and many more testing on different cutting jobs – we have determined that the best small gas-powered chainsaws are the ones you’ll feel comfortable working with. And, it should meet your cutting requirements as well.

Here are the best small gas powered chainsaws you can buy in 2021:

  • Lightweight (12-Inch Chainsaw): ECHO CS-271T
  • Easy To Start (12-Inch Chainsaw): HUYOSEN PRO Gas Chainsaw
  • Best For Light Duty (12-Inch Chainsaw): PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw
  • Best For Cutting Firewood (14-Inch Chainsaw): SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw
  • Fuel-Efficient (14-Inch Chainsaw): Husqvarna 120 II 14” Gas Chainsaw
  • Easy To Start (14-Inch Chainsaw): ECHO OPE Chain Saw
6 Best Small Gas Powered Chainsaws
Lightweight
ECHO CS-271T
  • 12-Inch Chainsaw
Easy To Start
HUYOSEN PRO Gas Chainsaw
  • 12-Inch Chainsaw
Best For Light Duty
PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw
  • 12-Inch Chainsaw
Best For Cutting Firewood
SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw
  • 14-Inch Chainsaw
Fuel-Efficient
Husqvarna 120 II 14” Gas Chainsaw
  • 14-Inch Chainsaw
Easy To Start
ECHO OPE Chain Saw
  • 14-Inch Chainsaw

Lightweight (12-Inch Chainsaw): ECHO CS-271T

ECHO CS-271T
ECHO CS-271T
9.8Outstanding
Pros
  • Perfect for one-handed use – 11-pound weight
  • Help your hands feel less fatigue – anti-vibration handle
Cons
  • A bit pricey

Not everyone needs a heavy-duty chainsaw that can tackle hard work.

If you’re looking for a small, lightweight model to cut limbs, trim, and prune; or if you’re in need of a secondary saw for smaller branches of a tree to save your back, our pick is the ECHO CS-271T.

It weighs only 11 pounds - light enough for one-handed use. It’s also easy to use; one or two pulls and it starts as always.

The 26.9cc engine is powerful enough to easily cut fallen trees with little vibration to save your wrists and back. A little pricey but absolutely well-worth!

ECHO CS-271T Specifications

Weight

11 pounds

Horsepower

0.9HP

Highlight Features

11-pound weight

anti-vibration handle

Verdict

Lightweight, easy to use, and powerful, the ECHO CS-271T is a perfect choice as a backup or for light-duty cutting tasks.

Easy To Start (12-Inch Chainsaw): HUYOSEN PRO Gas Chainsaw

HUYOSEN PRO Gas Chainsaw
HUYOSEN PRO Gas Chainsaw
9.4Outstanding
Pros
  • Highlight the Quick Start technology
  • Extremely safe to use – feature a safety trigger, safety switch, a hand guard, and a rapid-reaction kick-back brake
  • Comfortable, easy to maneuver, and controllable - lightweight yet well-balanced design
Cons
  • No complaint

This small gas-powered chainsaw starts more easily than any other contenders we tested, all thanks to the Quick Start technology. But rest assured, the tool doesn’t turn on easily by accident as it’s equipped with a safety trigger and safety switch.

It also has a hand guard and a rapid-reaction kick-back brake.

Besides, the lightweight yet well-balanced overall design gives you better control and comfort, along with great maneuverability to operate, which ensures your safety.

HUYOSEN PRO Gas Chainsaw Specifications

Weight

11.73 pounds

Horsepower

1.2 HP

Engine Speed

8500 rpm

Highlight Features

the Quick Start technology

a safety trigger, safety switch, a hand guard, and a rapid-reaction kick-back brake

well-balanced design

Verdict

The HUYOSEN PRO Gas Chainsaw is built with the Quick Start technology, allowing it to start from the first pull every time. So, if you’re in search of an easy-to-start, small gas powered chainsaw, consider it.

Best For Light Duty (12-Inch Chainsaw): PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw

PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw
PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw
9.2Outstanding
Pros
  • Perfect for light-duty work – feature a 26cc two-stroke engine & including one 10” chain and one 12” chain
  • Support long-term cutting tasks - reinforced overheat-resistant and wear-resistant chain & automatic chain oiler
  • Fuel-efficient - air cleaning system
Cons
  • Expensive
  • The chain brake could be better

The PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw features a 26cc two-stroke engine that can provide up to 3,000RPM to perfectly tackle light-duty work, such as lawn care or yard work.

Aside from a 12” chain, it includes a 10” for a small trimming and pruning.

We appreciate that it also can work constantly on longer jobs with no requirement of chain sharpening or oiling, all thanks to the reinforced overheat-resistant and wear-resistant chain plus the automatic chain oiler.

Its air cleaning system is another big plus since it helps save up to 20% of the gasoline consumption.

PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw Specifications

Weight

14.02 pounds

Horsepower

1.2

Engine Speed

3000 rpm

Highlight Features

feature a 26cc two-stroke engine

reinforced overheat-resistant and wear-resistant chain & automatic chain oiler

air cleaning system

Verdict

If you’re looking for the best small gas-powered chainsaw for light-duty work, we highly recommend the PINKWAY 2-Cycle Top Handle Saw

Best For Cutting Firewood (14-Inch Chainsaw): SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw

SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw
SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Easily cut up firewood – the 1.9HP engine
  • Work stably and consistently – overheat-resistant and wear-resistant chain & automatic oil supply system
  • Safe and reliable - high-quality brake baffle & the manufacturer’s 24-month warranty
Cons
  • Vague manuals
  • No fuel bulb

SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw is the most powerful 14” chainsaw we tested.

Its 1.9HP engine can create up to 8,500 RPM to cut up firewood and fallen trees like a breeze. Meanwhile, the automatic oil supply system and the quality chain with high wear resistance help you focus completely on your work.

SALEM MASTER also makes this chainsaw a lot safer and more reliable to use by adding a high-quality brake baffle and providing a 24-month warranty.

SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw Specifications

Weight

16.22 pounds

Horsepower

1.9

Engine Speed

8500 rpm

Highlight Features

the 1.9HP engine

overheat-resistant and wear-resistant chain & automatic oil supply system

high-quality brake baffle & the manufacturer’s 24-month warranty

Verdict

About 50-100% more powerful than other counterparts we tested, the SALEM MASTER Gas Chainsaw is perfect for cutting firewood.

Fuel-Efficient (14-Inch Chainsaw): Husqvarna 120 II 14” Gas Chainsaw

Husqvarna 120 II 14” Gas Chainsaw
Husqvarna 120 II 14” Gas Chainsaw
9Outstanding
Pros
  • Fuel-efficient & eco-friendly – the X-Torq® engine
  • Easy and quick to adjust the chainsaw during work - straightforward tensioning system
  • Save your hands from fatigue - LowVib anti-vibration system
Cons
  • Costly

Husqvarna 120 II distinguishes itself from the competition with its exclusive X-Torq® engine, which is known for superior fuel efficiency. And, by consuming less gasoline, it emits less smoke or fumes to the environment.

Producing 1.3 horsepower, it is powerful enough for hobby work, tree pruning, and other everyday tasks.

We appreciate that it features a straightforward tensioning system for quick adjustments and the LowVib anti-vibration system to keep on your work without fatigue.

Of course, that excellent performance comes at a cost.

Husqvarna 120 II 14” Gas Chainsaw Specifications

Weight

14.87 pounds

Horsepower

1.3

Highlight Features

the X-Torq® engine

straightforward tensioning system

LowVib anti-vibration system

Verdict

Compared to similarly powerful counterparts, Husqvarna 120 II 14

Easy To Start (14-Inch Chainsaw): ECHO OPE Chain Saw

ECHO OPE Chain Saw
ECHO OPE Chain Saw
9.4Outstanding
Pros
  • Start from the first pull every time
  • Easy to handle, maneuver, and climb – the 6.42-pound weight
Cons
  • Expensive
  • It comes with no protection case

Unlike some 14” chainsaw we tested, the ECHO OPE started easily right from the first pull without knocking us off balance. It’s a real back saver!

But there’s more, it weighs just twice lighter than most of our contenders and has also been the most lightweight model since we first tested it in 2015. So, it’s very easy to handle, maneuver, and even climb with no issue.

The vibration and noise levels are good.

Considering its power output, we highly recommend using it for light jobs around the house.

ECHO OPE Chain Saw Specifications

Weight

6.42 Pounds

Horsepower

1

Highlight Features

Start from the first pull every time

the 6.42-pound weight

Verdict

Constant inconsistency regarding start-up is prone to cause back pain and spine injury. But with the ECHO OPE Chain Saw, you can rest assured; it is easy to start right from the first pull.

How To Choose The Best Small Gas Powered Chainsaw?

Power Output

We all know that small gas-powered chainsaws are built for light- to moderate-duty cutting jobs. However, they come in a variety of power ranges, usually from 30cc to 55cc. So, how do you know which one suits you best?

First thing first, determine which applications you intend to use the chainsaw for and how significant the required workload is. For example:

  • If you want to prune branches or hedges, choose a chainsaw with a 30cc to 35cc engine.
  • If you want to cut logs for firewood, choose a chainsaw with a 36cc to 55cc engine.

Guide Bar Size

The guide bar and the engine of a gas-powered chainsaw go hand-in-hand.

Long guide bars usually come with powerful engines and vice versa. Long guide bars can cut through large logs of wood while shorter ones are just enough for passing through small branches or trees.

Back to the above examples:

  • If you want to prune branches or hedges, choose a chainsaw with 8” guide bar
  • If you want to cut logs for firewood, choose a chainsaw with a 16” guide bar.

Safety Features

Chain catcher: This feature helps catch a broken or derailed chain before it swings towards your hands while still spinning.

Chain brake: This feature helps reduce serious injuries caused by kickback by clamping down on the cutting chain. Also, it helps you to halt the chain between cuts to avoid a freely spinning blade.

Which Brands Make The Best Small Gas Powered Chainsaw?

Husqvarna

Husqvarna is considered one of the No.1 Swedish manufacturers of power tools in the world. Speaking of gas-powered chainsaws, not only are there a wide range of lines to meet various power needs but each of them is also known for decent fuel efficiency.

ECHO

ECHO is our next recommendation. They are known for providing chainsaws made of professional-grade components, aside from owning some patented innovation, such as the Pro-Fire® ignition system.

You can easily find a great ECHO gas-powered chainsaw for your needs with peace in mind that it will last you a lifetime.

FAQs

Are gas or electric chainsaws better?

Cordless electric chainsaws are a better choice if you need room to roam while corded electric chainsaws are best for cutting down small to medium trees. Meanwhile, gas-powered chainsaws are better for big trees.

What size chainsaw should I buy?

The chainsaw size should be at least two inches longer than the branch (or tree) thickness.

How lightweight do chainsaws come?

Chainsaws generally weigh 10 to 15 pounds.

Do you need to wear special gear when using a chainsaw?

Yes, you do.

For your safety, when using a chainsaw, you should wear proper protective gloves and glasses.

What can you cut with a small chainsaw?

With a small chainsaw with a 10” to 14” bar, you can cut a tree of 20” in diameter.

How often should I have my chainsaw serviced?

We recommend you to have your chainsaw serviced at least once per year for light use to every 3-4 months for heavier use.

How to maintain or take proper care of chainsaws?

Here is a tutorial video on how to maintain a chainsaw: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mNG17rmU30

How to prepare gas and oil mixture for a chainsaw?

Prepare a 40:1 blend calls for 3 oz. of two-cycle oil or a 50:1 blend calls for 2.5 oz. of oil if you’re treating 1 gal. of clean lead-free gasoline.

Conclusion

Our team has conducted an intensive comparison of the best small gas-powered chainsaws on the market to help you in filtering through the seemingly endless choices available.

Choosing the right one for your needs and budgets might be a daunting task, but we believe that with this ultimate guide, it is easier for you. Thanks for reading!

Harry Ramos
Harry Ramos

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