Table of Contents
- Best Chainsaw Under 200 Reviews 2019
- Remington RM4216 Rebel 42cc 2-cycle 16-inch Gas Powered Chainsaw – Best Seller
- Oregon CS1500 Self-Sharpening Electric Chainsaw – Top Pick
- WORX WG304.1 Chain Saw 18-Inch 4 15.0 Amp – Best Value
- Ryobi P546 10 in. ONE+ 18-Volt Lithium+ Cordless Chainsaw – Runner Up
- ARKSEN 45CC Gasoline Powered Chainsaw Wood Cutter 22″ inch Chain Saw Handheld – Also Consider
- Best Chainsaw Under 200 Buying Guide 2019
Best Chainsaw Under 200 Reviews 2019
With the growing season in full swing, people around the country are discovering the harsh reality: taking care of your yard is hard, and often expensive, work. You can always hire a crew to come around once a week to take care of it for you, or you can make a one-time investment and do it yourself. Of course, that one-time investment can be a huge cost on its own. That is why we have put together a list of the 5 best chainsaws under $200 reviews. To make sure you know what you are getting into, we also provide a helpful buyer’s guide and FAQ. The Remington and Oregon are above and beyond the best options, but they are not the least expensive. Keep reading to find out what the best value is.
Remington RM4216 Rebel 42cc 2-cycle 16-inch Gas Powered Chainsaw – Best Seller
The Remington Power Tool company was once a much more well-known brand than it is today, especially during the 1980s and 1990s when consumer-grade power tools were first starting to make a name for themselves in the market. Positioned at or near the top of that market, recent off-shoring and monopolization of power tool companies have actually pushed the Remington power tool brand into the mid-tier market, though in truth, the company has done little different in that time. Still, when you are looking for a chainsaw that is under $200, you are squarely in the consumer-grade range. Thanks to a depreciation of quality in the market overall, the Remington RM4216 has been able to claim the best seller position in this market.
When purchasing a chainsaw for less than $200, it is always paramount to make sure that the product provides good cutting power. Due to the nature of chainsaws in general, this is usually not much of an issue, but because of the price limitations, good cutting power can be harder to come by. Thankfully, Remington alleviates this issue by opting for a gas-powered design as opposed to the more convenient electric models. This does come with a couple of inconveniences, like being the most expensive chainsaw as well as one of the heavier chainsaws we reviewed, but it also provides enough power to cut down medium size trees too. Thanks to the 2-stroke 42cc engine, you do not have to worry about the cutting power as the Remington chainsaw can generate over 2000 nm of torque, far and away the most on our list. It is worth noting that the 16” bar is actually a bit small compared to some of the other options we looked at, but the make actually comes in larger models which are all well within the price point.
While the cutting power of the RM4216 chainsaw is more than enough for most consumer purposes, Remington decided not to sit on their laurels and ensured that this chainsaw set the standard for the market price point in other areas too. When looking for a bargain chainsaw, outside of the cutting power, the next most common issue to encounter is the durability. In order to ensure their product does not suffer from this problem either, the Remington chainsaw uses a die-cast chassis. Granted, this definitely contributes to the heavier build, but it also helps make sure that the fasteners do not strip their holding. Even better, the Remington RM4216 chainsaw is also extremely easy to use compared to many other gas-powered models. For one, it offers tool-free maintenance that includes chain tensioning as well as filter replacement. To go a step further, the Remington chainsaw also employs an automatic oiler, though it is known to leak. Still, with the 5-point anti-vibration design, it is not at all difficult to see why this is the best selling chainsaw under $200.
- Is a gas-powered chainsaw
- Has a 42cc engine
- Has anti-vibration technology
- Has an automatic oiler
- Has a die-cast chassis
- Has tool-free maintenance
- Has a smaller bar
- The most expensive chainsaw reviewed
Oregon CS1500 Self-Sharpening Electric Chainsaw – Top Pick
Anyone familiar with chainsaws is likely familiar with the name Oregon, though you may or may not actually be familiar with their actual models. This is in a large part due to the fact that, though one of the older and more established companies on our list, Oregon actually specializes in manufacturing the chain bar and chains other chainsaws use. In fact, Oregon chain bars are found on more chainsaws made by other manufacturers than they are on their own products, which is a testament to how effective their chain bars are in an of themselves and not an indictment of the brand’s actual chainsaws. While this particular model definitely has some uncommon qualities that can present a bit of a mixed bag for different consumers, it is still easily one of the best chainsaws under $200 and our top pick.
A quick glance at our list and it should become immediately apparent that one of these things is not like the others. While that may turn customers off who are comforted by the familiar, do not let the uncommon qualities of the CS1500 chainsaw intimidate you. To get it out of the way, while the Oregon is not the only electric chainsaw we reviewed, it is the only corded electric chainsaw on our list. This is an important distinction because it means that the Oregon CS1500 chainsaw is able to provide more consistent cutting power when compared to the cordless electric chainsaws. Of course, this also means that the Oregon chainsaw is literally tethered to an outlet in ways that none of the other products on our list are. However, being a corded electric chainsaw is not the only way in which the CS1500 bucks the standard trends of the market. For instance, this chainsaw also has a self-sharpening feature, though this can wear out your chain quicker than with other products.
Thanks in large part to the use of a corded design, the Oregon chainsaw is easily the most powerful electric chainsaw that we found. This cutting power first begins with an ample 15-amp motor that is tied for the most-powerful electric motor on our list. This motor is further able to drive the chain of the CS1500 chainsaw far quicker than nearly any other on our list, a blistering 48.8 mps. This is actually a significantly faster chain speed than even some of the gas-powered chainsaws we encountered. That said, the Oregon CS1500 chainsaw is not able to generate quite as much torque as a gas-powered competitor, but it is still able to generate by far the most torque in the electric chainsaw category. When you combine those specs with a fairly impressive 18” bar, it is all the more surprising that the Oregon chainsaw is still able to come in at one of the lower price points we found too. That said, it is worth noting that the plastic chassis of the CS1500 has been known to give over time and allow some vertical play.
- Is a corded electric chainsaw
- Has a 15-amp motor
- Is self-sharpening
- Has an 18” bar
- Is a less expensive chainsaw
- Has the fastest chain speed reviewed
- The chain wears out quickly
- Has a plastic chassis
WORX WG304.1 Chain Saw 18-Inch 4 15.0 Amp – Best Value
WORX is definitely one of the more recent additions to the power tool market, though they have been around for about a decade and a half and can trace their origins back even further. Basically, one of BLACK+DECKER’s old OEM manufacturers, the Positec Tool Corporation, teamed up with one of their old CEOs to offer an innovative competitor in the consumer-grade power tool market. While this does mean that WORX will not be able to handle professional-grade jobs, it also means that the company took the best things from BLACK+DECKER and made them better. As such, it should come as little surprise that the WORX WG304.1 chainsaw is the least expensive product on our list and the best value.
Now that we have gotten to the budget value section of the list, it is important to understand that many of the impressive specs we have already seen will become a bit rarer. That said, the WORX chainsaw still manages to impress by providing a 15-amp motor that is larger than most in its class. What is even more surprising is the fact that the WG304.1 chainsaw is able to accomplish this in a cordless electric model. It should be noted that cordless chainsaws, which are powered by battery packs, have a tendency to produce far more cutting power when the battery has a full charge and slowly decrease as the battery reserves deplete. Still, the WORX chainsaw is able to produce a decent chain speed of 12 mps, though this is actually one of the slower that we reviewed. Thankfully, the 18” chain bar does at least allow the WORX WG304.1 chainsaw to cut down thicker trees than some.
While it would be great if the expected flaws from this budget chainsaw were minor, there is actually one that is significantly troubling. Basically, in order to cut down on manufacturing costs, the WORX chainsaw uses drive gears of dubious quality. What makes this truly concerning is that the gears do not actually slip or result in decreased cutting power like with some competitors but simply fail outright, leaving the chainsaw inert. As if that were not bad enough, WORX does not even sell replacement gears rendering the product useless. Granted, this will definitely depend on how often you use the chainsaw, what type of wood you are cutting, and your technique. Still, this is a potential deal breaker if you are not fairly familiar with the proper use of not just chainsaws in general but this product in particular. On the plus side, this is by far one of the easier chainsaws to use cwith an auto-tension system as well as an automatic oiler.
- Is a cordless electric chainsaw
- Is a lightweight
- Has an 18” bar
- Is the least expensive chainsaw reviewed
- Has a 15-amp motor
- Is easy to use
- Has cheap drive gears
- Will leak oil
Ryobi P546 10 in. ONE+ 18-Volt Lithium+ Cordless Chainsaw – Runner Up
Ryobi is one of the older companies on our list and is distinguished as one of the older continuous power tool brands in general. Starting just after WWII, Ryobi can be seen as a direct, albeit slightly more expensive, competitor of BLACK+DECKER. That said, it should be understood that, these days, Ryobi is definitely a consumer-grade brand, though their products often edge into the mid-tier conversation– depending on the category. For an inexpensive chainsaw, we definitely feel like there is plenty to like about the P546, but there are also some disappointing qualities too. While this chainsaw definitely earned its runner up position, as opposed to a spot higher on our list, that does not mean you should discount it altogether, especially if you already own a number of other Ryobi cordless electric power tools.
Whenever you purchase a consumer-grade chainsaw, chances are you do not need a screaming beast capable of felling a mighty sequoia. Instead, you simply need a reasonably powerful tool that is also easy to use and not too hard on the body. Taking this into consideration, Ryobi may have produced one of the better consumer-grade chainsaws we found, so long as you simply need to prune some thinner branches or saplings. First and foremost, this is by far the lightest chainsaw that we reviewed, and it is often half as heavy as comparable gas-powered chainsaws. That said, even most electric chainsaws of either variety will regularly be 50-percent heavier or more. Still, the crowning achievement of the Ryobi P546 chainsaw, in terms of convenience, has to be the inclusion of the ONE+ battery system. This system allows you to use the same battery packs for a wide variety of different tools that fall within the make line. Basically, if you already have one or more ONE+ power tools, then you already have a number of battery packs for use with the Ryobi chainsaw.
Ups and Downs
Not everything is great with the Ryobi as it has some definite limitations when it comes to appropriate tasks. For instance, this is the only chainsaw on our list that uses a push-button oiler, though we would actually argue that could be a good thing. We would argue that, especially with the inconsistency of automatic oilers, but the push-button oiler is known to leak out its entire contents over time. Another disappointing feature of the Ryobi comes from the small chain bar which is only 10”. As if that were not bad enough, the P546 chainsaw also has the slowest chain speed we saw at only 4 mps, a quality that will definitely limit its effectiveness when cutting hardwood. Finally, the Ryobi chainsaw is also the only product that we reviewed which still requires a tool to tighten the chain. This means you will likely have to stop cutting every few minutes or so and turn the saw off to tighten the chain.
- Is a cordless electric chainsaw
- Has a push-button oiler
- Is a less expensive chainsaw
- Has tool-less chain tensioning
- Is the lightest chainsaw reviewed
- Uses a ONE+ battery
- Has the smallest bar reviewed
- Will leak oil
ARKSEN 45CC Gasoline Powered Chainsaw Wood Cutter 22″ inch Chain Saw Handheld – Also Consider
ARKSEN is definitely a bit of a mystery as a company for a couple of different reasons. First, this company has actually been around since 2012, longer than a number of other power tool manufacturers. However, in that time, the company has not even made a commercial website and instead relies on Amazon or eBay. To make matters more confusing, ARKSEN is actually just a subsidiary brand owned by RGE Motor Direct Inc which itself does not have much of an online identity either except through the aforementioned channels. Altogether, this makes the company a bit difficult to suss out and may inspire some legitimate suspicion on the part of the consumer. Even when you go to the store page, it does not seem as though the brand specializes in any given product and is likely just a factory-owned company.
Despite the somewhat murky details surrounding the company, the ARKSEN chainsaw seems to provide an amazing value at first blush. Sure, this is one of the more expensive chainsaws on our list, but it is actually a less expensive chainsaw for its type and specs. Specifically, the ARKSEN chainsaw has the largest chain bar that we reviewed, and it is even larger than the larger alternative models of some of the makes we included. When you further include the fact that this gas-powered chainsaw has the largest engine at its price point at 45cc, it seems like a veritable steal. Even better, if you happen to live in a municipality with more restrictive emission standards, this chainsaw has an Eco-Boost mode that reduces emissions and fuel consumption.
The Other Shoe
With all of the impressive qualities of the ARKSEN chainsaw, especially at its rock-bottom price point, you know the other shoe has to drop– and drop it does. This chainsaw has an unusual warranty clause with a particular mechanical issue that basically turns it into little more than a crap shoot. Essentially, the ARKSEN chainsaw has a problem with its pull cord where it will regularly fail to start the engine. While this can sometimes be attributed to user error, even professional mechanics can have difficulty figuring out what the problem is. That would not necessarily be the worst thing if you could easily return the product for a different one or a refund. Unfortunately, the warranty of this chainsaw is voided whenever you put gasoline into it, which just so happens to be the only way you could figure out whether it is functional or not.
- Is a gas-powered chainsaw
- Has a 45cc engine
- Has a 22” bar
- Has a fast chain speed
- Has an automatic oiler
- Has Ecoboost engine
- Is a more expensive chainsaw
- Not the most durable
Best Chainsaw Under 200 Buying Guide 2019
There are two main types of chainsaws, gas and electric, with the latter type being further divided into corded and cordless models. While electric chainsaws have definitely come a long way since their inception, the budget chainsaw category will not necessarily reap the best fruits of this innovation. As such, it is important to fully consider what jobs you have to do with the chainsaw before deciding on its type.
This is the standard type of chainsaw that most people probably think of off the top of their heads. This type of chainsaw functions with a mixture of oil and gasoline and employs a combustion engine. While this type of chainsaw is generally louder and heavier than either electric, it is also able to more reliably generate the necessary torque to cut through thicker branches of hardwood. That said, gas-powered chainsaws are also more expensive than electric models, even within the budget category, and are more complicated to use and maintain.
This was once the only kind of reliable electric chainsaw on the market before battery-powered electric motors advanced enough. These days, most people eschew the corded electric models for their more convenient and mobile cordless brothers. However, corded electric chainsaws are making a bit of a comeback due to some of the limitations of cordless electric chainsaws, especially in the budget category. It is important to note that cordless models are not only tethered to an outlet but also require a thick enough gauge and a maximum length of extension cord before they begin to lose cutting power.
Pretty much everyone, from the humble homeowner to the 9-to-5 professional, waits for the day when cordless electric chainsaws can truly compete with gas chainsaws head-to-head. As it stands, there are definitely some models that have solid cutting power, but those are rarely found in the budget category. Sadly, if you are looking for a cordless electric chainsaw under $200, the workload needs to be a bit restricted. Still, if you have thinned branches to trim around a larger property, the convenience and mobility of a cordless electric chainsaw can be a great alternative to gas-powered models.
This is pretty much a given for every product regardless of its price point, but it deserves special mention for cheap chainsaws. This is because a number of less expensive chainsaws often have issues with their durability. The easiest issue in this regard to deal with is a plastic chassis which can often be refastened with a bit of ingenuity and inexpensive materials. More difficult to deal with are the durability issues that affect the drive or general operation of the chainsaw. More often than not, this is only an issue when the manufacturer uses cheap materials on these components. The most common occurrence, in this case, is using nylon instead of a harder metal. This does not mean the chainsaw is doomed to fail, but it definitely increases the odds.
What type of chainsaw to use?
Regardless of the price, the type of chainsaw you will want to use will likely depend heavily on the specific tasks you need it for. The different types of chainsaws each come with their strengths and weaknesses, and these aspects are better suited for one purpose over another. While the chainsaws will vary in their cutting power, it is important to remember that this feature will often move the needle of your decision a bit more than others. This is because a chainsaw without enough cutting power is pretty much worthless regardless of its other qualities.
To this end, the gas-powered chainsaw will generally work the best for most situations, but it does require more strength to use and carries with it a greater risk of injury. On the flip side, both types of electric chainsaws can still get the job done, but they will rarely, if ever, be able to handle the duty of tasks a gas-powered model can tackle. Still, between the two, the corded models will generally work best if you just need to do some medium cutting around your actual home which often eliminates property with multiple acres. Electric chainsaws will definitely lack the most in the power department, but are excellent if you do not have much experience with chainsaws and only need to do some light cutting.
What to watch out for in a budget chainsaw?
Budget products, in general, are a bit difficult to sift through as their low price almost always belies some legitimate issue. Of course, depending on what product you are purchasing and the particular needs of your circumstances, some flaws are a bit more acceptable than others. In general, there are three broad categories in which the myriad of different flaws can be grouped: convenience, effectiveness, and durability. While nobody wants to sacrifice any of these qualities, you will generally need to pick 2 out of the 3 to get the kind of deal that truly makes a product budget-friendly.
When it comes to chainsaws, this issue can get even trickier considering the fact that chainsaws have to meet a certain threshold just to be appreciably functional. On top of that, even an inexpensive chainsaw will still run you over $100, which is why our list focuses on chainsaws that are under $200. Still, when it comes to looking for a cheap chainsaw, you cannot afford to sacrifice the ability to cut and have to consider the rigorous circumstances under which you are likely to use it. In this instance, we highly recommend that you purchase an inexpensive chainsaw that is durable first and foremost. After durability, the cutting power is the most important quality, especially if you have uncommon trees or tasks. Convenience, while nice, is definitely the sacrificial lamb of the group and is the easiest to justify losing.
The most important features for a budget chainsaw?
Because of the nature of their function, budget chainsaws should focus more on cutting power than anything else. In fact, even if the chainsaw lacks some of the more relevant safety features found on more expensive models, you should likely prioritize cutting power. That said, this does not necessarily mean that you need to get the most powerful chainsaw under $200 that you can find. Instead, it is a good idea to figure out what kind of tasks you will demand of the chainsaw and look for cutting power just a bit above that. Of course, the majority of quality chainsaws under $200 just so happen to be electric which will limit their proper context.
In this instance, you may want to consider the weight of the products as this will affect your fatigue levels more than most. If you are looking for a cheap chainsaw, chances are that you do not have much experience with the power tool. In this case, you will want to look for a product that is easier on your body and easier to use to prevent risks if you get tired and might lose focus.
As we can see, the cheap chainsaw category is a veritable minefield with each product coming up short in its own way but also offering budget-friendly solutions. The Remington is both durable and powerful but costly, while the Oregon offers a great electric option, so long as you have access to an outlet nearby. After that, the options get a little shakier with both the WORX and ARKSEN offering extremely low prices but potential durability concerns. Finally, the Ryobi is definitely a solid choice, so long as you do not need to cut anything too thick.