Your tool collection might not be complete without a pole saw. Depending upon the jobs you have planned, a pole saw might be able to keep you safer, get the job done faster and simply be a more convenient way to trim branches, do home improvements and more. A pole saw is an extension for whatever type of saw that you need for the job. However, that’s not to say that pole saws are simply extensions for existing saws. They are their own inclusive unit. In this guide, we will be taking a look at the various types of pole saws out there as well as some of the best pole saws on the market.
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Types of Pole Saws
The first thing that you should understand is that there are various types of pole saws available. Knowing what types are out there will help you decide which one you need for a particular job. Each of them has their own advantages and disadvantages, so it will be up to you to decide what is going to work best for what you have in mind.
Manual Pole Saws
Manual pole saws are pole saws that do not have any power to them whatsoever. They are basically saws on a stick. Manual pole saws have a saw mounted on one end of the pole while the other has a handle for you to grip. You use the same back-and-forth sawing motion that you would if you were to use a hacksaw or other type of manual saw. Manual pole saws are advantageous because they cost less than powered saws. However, they are also a lot harder to use. All of the sawing action has to be done with your own strength, and from far away that can be quite challenging.
Electric Pole Saws
Electric pole saws are pole saws they have some kind of saw mounted on the other end (usually a chainsaw) and are then plugged into an electrical outlet in order to work. Generally, while manual pole saws just have a blade, any type of powered pole saw is going to have a chainsaw like attachment on the cutting end. You control the electric pole saw from the handle where you grip it and use the cutting power of the chainsaw blade to trim leaves or cut something that is higher than you can reach. Of course, the disadvantage of an electric pole saw is that you can only go as far as the power cord or your extension cords allow you to go.
Cordless Pole Saws
Cordless pole saws generally refer to pole saws that are powered by a battery. You do not have to plug in cordless pole saws, so you are able to use them for cutting just about anywhere as long as the battery is charged. This gives you a major advantage over electric pole saws, which you would not be able to take out into the wilderness to do cutting or anywhere that there isn’t an electrical outlet. However, cordless pole saws also suffer from the disadvantage of being dependent upon the charging the battery. If you are out cutting in the battery drains, you will have no opportunity to charge it again unless you get near an electrical outlet.
Gas-Powdered Pole Saws
Gas-powered pole saws the final type that we will discuss. Gas powered pole saws are advantageous because all you need is gasoline in order to make them work. If you are away from civilization and using your pole saw for cutting, and the gasoline runs out, then all you have to do is refill the tank in order to keep using your pole saw. However, there are disadvantages as well; one is that pole saws that are powered by gasoline are noisy; another is that you have to continually buy gasoline for them; although they do not use that much for a single cutting session.
Why You Should Invest in a Pole Saw
Let’s look at some of the reasons why you might want to invest in a pole saw. There are many advantages offered by pole saws for certain types of jobs, and you may not realize just how useful they can be. Let’s look at three factors that you can use to evaluate whether or not you need a pole saw.
- Safety: Safety is definitely a concern when you are out cutting. The thing about cutting up high is that you have to be able to reach whatever it is you’re trying to cut without a pole saw. For example, you need a ladder or a tree basket that is used for tree trimming in order to trim tree branches that are high off the ground. But neither of these is particularly safe. People fall off ladders all the time, and even the relative safety of a tree basket can be potentially dangerous if there are electrical lines or the equipment malfunctions.
- Cost: The cost of getting up high is also a consideration. Making a one-time investment in a pole saw will allow you to cut branches and other high up objects, while you might need several different types of ladders in order to reach the same height. If you are going to be cutting trees professionally, then you’re going to need some sort of basket that can raise you up to where the tree branches are the need to trim. This can be a huge investment or it can cost you a great deal regularly if you need to rent one. Plus, chainsaws and ladders are not a good combination.
- Convenience: A pole saw is also a lot more convenient than some of the other ways discussed here. A pole side can easily be part of the tools that you keep in the back of your vehicle, while you might have to go get the ladder that you need or spend time at a rental company renting a tree basket if you are going to be trimming branches or doing any construction up high.
What to Look For When Buying a Pole Saw
There are certain things that you want to look for when it comes to buying a pole saw. These are particular features that will help in certain situations and understanding what these features are will allow you to prioritize when you’re making a buying decision.
The length of the bar is certainly a consideration. The bar is the metal track that the chainsaw chain loops around at high speeds. The length of the bar will determine how easily you are able to cut large objects. For example, if you are using a pole saw to cut down a tree from high up, if the length of the bar is the same width as the tree trunk or longer than the tree trunk then you are going to be able to cut it down with one slice. However, if the tree trunk is wider than the length of your chainsaw bar, then you’re going to have to make several cuts in order to fell the tree. The bar length will be up to you based upon what jobs you’re trying to do with it.
Extension Pole Length
The length of the extension pole is also an important factor. The length of the extension pole determines how high you will be able to reach with your pole saw. Of course, it is impossible to know the exact length that you will need for every job in the future, but making sure that you get one with enough length to be able to accomplish those jobs is a smart decision. The thing you have to keep in mind is that the corollary of getting a saw that is long enough for any job also means that your saw may be unwieldy and difficult to balance. You’ll have to make a decision as to how you want to prioritize those two things.
The size of the blade is an important consideration. With manual pole saws, the size of the blade is pretty important. The longer the blade you have, the thicker it is and how heavy-duty the construction is are all things that will affect how well you are able to use it for cutting down tree branches or sawing off something up high on a structure. When it comes to blade size on powered pole saws that have a chainsaw attachment, this usually refers to the gauge of the chainsaw chain. The thicker the chain is, the more easily you will be able to cut through hard objects with your pole saw.
There is a number of attachments that you can get for pole saws these days. For example, you can attach a hedge trimmer or edger in order to reach branches of your bushes that are too high for you to reach by yourself. You can also turn a pole saw into a blower. The attachments come because the way that the pole size set up is to be compatible with these other types of tools. Just as the trigger on the handle and the power extends to the chainsaw attachment, the same holds true for any compatible attachments. This can certainly add value to your pole saw and make it much easier purchase decision to make.
Max Weight of Pole Saw
The max weight is a measurement of how much your pole can actually hold. Generally, saw chainsaw attachments are fairly lightweight and since they come with your pole saw they are already made for it and you will not have any problem using it. However, the max weight factor comes into play when your chainsaw attachment no longer works and you have to buy a replacement that is not necessarily the one provided by the manufacturer. In addition, other accessories may be heavier than your standard chainsaw attachment. Knowing what the max weight of the pole and the attachment itself is can help you avoid accidents and damage.
Easy To Assemble
Whether the saw is easy to assemble is also something to keep in mind. A saw that is difficult to assemble and is going to be a pain every time might not be worth the money that you spend on it. When you have a job to do, you want your pole saw to go together quickly and be ready to use within a minute or two. If you have to struggle with your pole saw every time you put it together, then it is going to turn out to be a bigger pain than a convenience. Make sure that you check out product reviews before you buy to find out whether the pole saw you are considering is easy to assemble.
You also want to look at the safety features that come with your pole saw. At the end of the day, you are still operating a chainsaw, and even though you are operating far away from yourself, you still have to be concerned about accidents. The safety features that a pole saw provides will help to alleviate those dangers. For example, a chain brake, good securing to the pole and an auto oiler are three things that will contribute to the safety of your pole saw. You also want to make sure that your pole saw is perfectly balanced and easy to use because if you tip it forward and lose control it could easily injure someone or damage property.
Specific Pole Saw Features
Let’s look at some specific pole saw features that you should be thinking about when you’re looking at the different pole saws on the market. These are three things that are going to be present or should be considered with every pole saw that you look at.
Whether there is a warranty with your pole saw is always something you want to prioritize. If a product has a warranty, then there is a greater chance of it being a quality product in the first place. Manufacturers that have to replace saws all the time do not offer excellent warranties with their product because they would lose money. However, having a warranty also protects you in case you get a pole saw that is defective or damaged in some way. Warranties can vary from one manufacturer to another, but they usually extend anywhere between one year and five years and have specific restrictions on what they will replace or repair.
The price of the pole saws also a consideration. If you are going to purchase a pole saw, you want to make sure that it is a good business decision. Even if you are buying it for personal use, you still want to weigh the extra cost of having a pole saw around with the danger of trying to use a regular chainsaw for jobs that are up high. Ladders and chainsaws do not mix. You should never climb a ladder with the chainsaw. Investing in a pole saw, even if it is for personal use, is usually worth it because there it can be no price put on your life or the life of someone nearby. If you are purchasing a pole saw for business, it is likely that such an investment will pay off very quickly.
How much power there is behind your pole saws also something you want to look into. The more power that a pole saw has, the easier it is going to be to cut through thick wood or exceptionally hard objects. However, the more powerful saws are also the more expensive ones; and the more power you have the more you’re going to have to pay for it.
How to Maintain Your Pole Saw
Knowing how to maintain your pole saw is crucial. Let’s look at the most important maintenance tips for making sure that your pole saw is ready for each next use and going to last for as long as possible.
Checking your oil level is important every few jobs. Make sure that the level in the oiler is up to the mark provided. This will be a little bit different on every type of pole saw out there, but you should be able to find instructions online or be able to look at your pole saw and determine oil level.
You should check the chain tension regularly as well. If the chain tension has been loosened, then you want to tighten it up and if it consistently is loose or your pole saw does not cut properly, then you may have to replace your chainsaw bar.
Clean and Sharpen Chains
You definitely need to clean your chains regularly and sharpen them when they get dull. Whether you have to clean the chain after each use depends on the type of job you’re doing and the length of the job. You will know if your chain needs sharpening because you will have a hard time cutting through things that were easy before.
Before each use, you want to make sure that all of the screws, nuts and bolts are tight, check the trigger and trigger lock and make sure they are working properly and look at your chain to make sure there are no breaks or damage in it. After each use, clean the outside of the machine with a damp cloth and clean below the protective cover and then return it to the case or bag that it came in.
Perform Weekly Maintenance
You should perform some specific weekly maintenance including checking the starter cord, looking for vibration dampener damage, removing and cleaning the spark plug and checking it for the right gap according to the manufacturer specifications and file off any metal burrs.
Perform Monthly Maintenance
There are also some specific things you should do monthly including checking the fuel filter to make sure it does not need replacing is not clogged, looking for cracks in the fuel hose and replacing the spark plug which should be done once a month no matter what.
Pole Saw Safety Tips
There are a number of safety considerations when it comes to operating and maintaining a pole saw. For one thing, you always want to use a thick pair of gloves whenever you are operating the pole saw or performing maintenance on it. You also want to keep the blade sharp because dull blades can actually be a safety hazard. You want your pole saw to be lightweight and perfectly balanced, and you want to make sure that the area that you are cutting is visible and that you have a lot of room around you to move.
Always check your chain tension and make sure that your oil reservoir is full. Chains can stretch for many reasons including a change in temperature and the normal vibrations of use. In addition, make you perform all required maintenance right away and that you check your saw before each use according to the checklist above.
Let’s look at the seven of the best pole saws out there. You have a lot of choices on the market when it comes to the pole saw that you choose, but we have looked at the market carefully and come up with these seven suggestions that are going to work for most people. These are all high-quality pole saws that have great features and very competitive pricing.
Remington RM2599 Maverick
The Remington RM2599 Maverick is a powerful gasoline-powered pole saw that features a 25CC 2-cycle engine with a pull start system featuring QuickStart. It has an eight-inch bar and chain that is mounted on a 7-foot extension pole. Other features include an auto oiler and a 2-year limited warranty.
This saw gives you plenty of reach with a seven-foot extension pole an additional eight inches on the bar so that you can reach high places easily. It almost always starts on the first pull thanks to QuickStart technology and you can attach a variety of different tools to it like a blower, hedge clippers and more. In addition, it has a powerful engine in auto oiler to always keep your chain lubricated.
The throttle is really sensitive in these models. If you push it too hard and the chainsaw dies, but it also hesitates when you’re first pushing on the throttle so you have to find a happy medium between the two.
- 25 CC 2-cycle engine
- QuickStart pull start feature
- Compatible with Remington and other attachments
- 2-year warranty
- 7-foot extension pole
- 8-inch bar
Black & Decker LPP120B Pole Saw
This Black & Decker pole saw is a terrific choice when you have different heights that you need to reach regularly and when you want versatility from your pole saw. In addition, it has lots of other features that you will appreciate.
This saw features of 20 volt Max lithium-ion battery for a very long performance time on a single charge. You can make up 100 cuts on a 1 to 2-inch branch with a single charge, and the battery will last for a very long time as well. In addition, it is adjustable so you always have the perfect length of pole and the max allows you to reach up to 14 feet. It also has a blade guard for added safety.
The only disadvantage with this is it is a Black & Decker standard product, which means that it is a good quality product is going to last you for a few years, but you should not expect this to be a lifetime purchase.
- Battery-operated with a 20-volt Lithium-ion battery
- Blade guard
- Oil bottle
- Adjustable reach from 6.5 feet to 10 feet with a total max length of 14 feet from the ground
- 8-inch cutting bar
- Compact size and easy to manage
Greenworks 8-Inch 6.5 Amp Corded Pole Saw
This Greenworks 6.5 amp pole saw works on electricity and has quite a few features that you will find useful. In addition, it has a high-quality chainsaw bar and will allow you to get most of your yard jobs done thanks to the full extension of an eight-foot reach.
The 6.5 amp motor is a powerful motor that is going to do a great job at cutting down any tree branch that you need to cut down. In addition, it has an eight inch Oregon chain bar which is one of the highest quality chain bars out there. It also features an automatic oiler and eight feet of pole extension for those hard-to-reach jobs.
This pole saw does not extend as far as some of the other ones that are on this list, but you will be able to get the majority of the jobs done in your yard with this saw, and because it is a little shorter and more balanced, it will be a little safer.
- 5 Amp motor
- Electric corded saw
- 8-inch Oregon chain bar
- Automatic Oiler
- Full extension of 8 feet
Worx WG309 Electric Pole Saw
This electric pole saw has a ton of features that you will love, and it runs on electricity so that you can do yard work whenever you want without having to worry about charging the battery or getting some gasoline to fill it. Let’s take a look at the features.
The major advantage with this particular saw is that it is a two and one chainsaw and pole saw. That means that if you do not need the pole saw offer extended reach, you can simply unattached the chainsaw and use it like a regular chainsaw. It also has an eight-foot extension pole, and extra-large oil tank, a rotatable handle to be able to safely cut at an angle in an auto-tensioning chain that means your size safer to use than many of the others out there.
There are a couple of concerns with this pole saw that you should be aware of. First, the pole is really thin in the chainsaw is kind of heavy. It does take a certain amount of strength and balance to manage it properly. The second thing is that you will not really notice when you press the lubricant button and the reason is that it does not use very much lubricant. But those that are used to seeing more lubricant will press it over and over and may use more oil than necessary.
- 2-in-1 pole saw and chainsaw
- Auto-tensioning chain
- 10-inch chainsaw bar
- Rotatable handle
- Tool-free adjustments
- 8-Amp motor
- 8-foot extension pole
- Lightweight design
- 120 ml oil tank
Poulan Pro PP258TP Pole Pruner
You will love this pole saw because it comes with everything that you need to reach up to the highest branches and it starts really quickly. In addition, you will be able to attach lots of other things to this pole saw that will make pruning your yard or doing high-end construction worker breeze.
There are a number of advantages with this pole saw. For one thing, as a 12 foot total reach which should be plenty of room to get anything up either you need to cut. It also features Prolink attachment ready design and spring-assisted start so that it almost always starts on the very first pull.
This saw is really powerful, but it is also pretty heavy. If you are used to more lightweight saws than you may have trouble managing this saw which is a safety concern.
- 8-inch chainsaw bar
- Attachment ready (ProLink)
- 2-year warranty
- 12-stroke 25 CC engine
- 12-foot total reach
- Spring-assisted starting
Oregon Cordless PS250-E6 Pole Saw Kit
This is a battery-operated saw that has a terrific battery and plenty of reach so that you can prune trees, hedges, bushes that are taller than you can reach on your own and even do any cutting on the second level of your home without having to get a ladder. Let’s look at the features.
With a 40 volt Max lithium-ion battery you are going to be able to cut hundreds of times before you ever have to recharge this device. It also offers a mid-mount motor design for better balance, an eight-inch bar and a 10-foot pole for a total reach of 15 feet.
There are only two disadvantages to this pole saw. First of all, if you need to remove the chainsaw, it can take a little time because there are four bolts to hold it into place. The second thing is if anything breaks it can be hard to find replacement parts.
- Pole extends up to 10’2” for a total reach of 15 feet max
- Lightweight and balanced – 13.5 pounds total
- 40-volt MAX lithium-ion battery
- Mid-mount motor design
- Compact cutting head
- 8-inch bar
Sun Joe Telescoping Electric Pole Chain Saw
This telescoping electric pole chainsaw is a terrific choice because of high-quality parts and useful features. This electric saw will allow you to run an extension cord out in your yard and trimmed tree branches that are too far over or take care of any construction work on high without having to get a ladder or climb on the roof. Let’s see what features this offers.
The eight-inch Oregon bar is well-made and when you combine it with a 15-foot max reach, you have a saw that is able to be versatile enough to do any job. In addition, the 6.5 amp motor is powerful enough for most tree branches and it has an easy push button start.
Some people may find this a little heavier than is comfortable, but it is lighter than some of the other saws listed here. In addition, if you try to do too much with that you may notice the motor smoking.
- 5 Amp motor
- 8-inch Oregon bar
- Auto-oiling system
- Push-button start
- 15-foot max reach
- Runs on electrical power
Types of Pole Saws
Let’s take a look at the various types of pole saws and how they compare to the other types of saws that we have discussed here. Understanding how one compares against the other may help you make a decision on which one you want.
Manual Pole Saws vs. Electric Pole Saws
Manual pole saws are certainly useful for many things. The manual pole saws perfect for someone who does very little work up high and just need something that they can solve a branch with once in a while. You’re going to have to put your strength into cutting down branches with this pole saw, but you are also going to pay a lot less and have a much safer saw. Electric pole saws, on the other hand, work on electricity and usually have a chainsaw attachment instead of a blade. This makes them more effective, but it also makes them more liable to injure someone if not used properly.
Manual Pole Saws vs. Cordless Pole Saws
So, how does the manual pole saw compete against the cordless pole saw? A cordless book works on battery, while a manual pole saw doesn’t have any power on it at all. That means that if you are planning to go out into the woods and use it on trees or other objects, you’re only going to get a certain amount of cutting before you have to recharge. However, this is somewhat of a moot point because you are going to tire of sawing with the manual pole saw long before you run out of battery with the cordless.
Gas Powered Pole Saws vs. Electric Pole Saws
Gas-powered pole saws are much more powerful than electric pole saws. Gas powered chainsaws always have this advantage, because of the way that they are designed. Electric and battery-operated pole saws work well, but they are not nearly as powerful as gas-powered chainsaws and they are not able to do the big jobs. However, the advantage with the electric pole saws as opposed to gas is that you do not have pollution, you do not have as much noise and you do not have to buy gas for it.
Cordless Pole Saw vs. Electric Pole Saws
The cordless pole saw is a battery-operated pole saw that you can move around with without having to worry about an extension cord. However, eventually, you are going to have to recharge it. With the electric pole saw, you are restricted to the power cord or extension cord and as long as it will let you move. This is the main difference between these two.
Best Pole Saw Brands
There are certain pole saw brands out there that you should be aware of. Let’s take a look at each of them.
- Remington: Remington is one of the top quality brands when it comes to pole saws and other tools. You will find Remington right alongside with brands like Stihl, but they are also going to cost more because they are a premium brand.
- Black & Decker: You probably know the name Black & Decker because they make so many different tools. Black & Decker tools are great, but you have to keep in mind that they are not made to last forever so they are eventually going to wear out.
- Sun Joe: Sun Joe is and Snow Joe are brands that specialize in innovative outdoor tools including tillers, trimmers, chainsaws and more. They help you make your yard more beautiful throughout the year.
- Worx: Another great brand is Worx. They may not have earned a reputation for quality that some of the other brands have, but they are one of the best budget options available.
The bottom line is that there are lots of different things to evaluate when it comes to choosing the right pole saw. This guide should give you the help you need in choosing the right one as well as some suggestions from the best of the pole saws currently on the market.