How To Lower Compression On A Chainsaw For Better Cutting

Chainsaw compression is the amount of pressure that the chainsaw puts on the chain. If it is too high, the chainsaw will be difficult to start, and it may stall while you are using it.

If it is too low, the chainsaw may not cut through the wood properly. In this article, we’re going to show you how to lower compression on a chainsaw.

What are the Benefits of Lowering Compression on Your Chainsaw?

Lowering the tension on a chainsaw can help in several ways. By reducing the compression, the chainsaw will be less likely to stall when it encounters resistance.

This can make it easier to cut through dense materials, such as hardwood, and can also prevent the chainsaw from overheating.

Additionally, by lowering the compression you can improve the fuel economy of your chainsaw.

How To Easily Reduce Chain Saw compression

how to lower compression on a chainsaw

Compression on a chainsaw is the process of reducing the diameter of a saw blade to fit in a smaller size. The reduction in size increases the power output and efficiency of the engine.

To reduce compression, you need to reduce the tension on the chain by loosening it. You can do this by loosening up bolts around the tensioner, removing some bolts that hold down pressure plates, or simply tightening screws that hold down pressure plates.

Here are some things you should know about compression:

  • When using a chainsaw with high compression, it creates more heat and less power output than when using low compression
  • Compression can be reduced by loosening bolts around the tensioner and removing pressure plates
  • Compression can also be reduced by tightening screws that hold down pressure plates

Things you’ll need

In order to lower the compression on a chainsaw, you will need a socket wrench, screwdriver, and adjustable wrench. The process is fairly simple and can be completed in just a few minutes.

First, remove the spark plug cover and the spark plug. Next, use the socket wrench to loosen the bolt that holds the cylinder in place. Be careful not to lose it!

Finally, use the adjustable wrench to loosen the screw that holds the chain tensioner in place.[1]

6 Simple steps to lower chainsaw compression

1. Remove the spark plug and make sure the chain is not moving

One of the most important tasks a chainsaw can be used for is tree trimming and cutting the brush, in addition to cutting through live trees. But, like any other gardening tool, it needs to be handled responsibly.

One of the additional most significant details to bear in mind when utilizing a chainsaw is to keep the chain from moving. If the chain begins to shift, it can cause serious injury.

2. Unscrew the cover and remove it

In order to lower the compression on a chainsaw, unscrew the cover and remove it. There you will see a small screw. Turn it counterclockwise with a screwdriver to decrease the compression.

Be careful not to turn it too much, or you may damage the engine. Replace the cover and screw, making sure it is tight.

3. Look for the black box with two adjustment screws on it

Lowering the compression on a chainsaw can be achieved by adjusting the screws on the black box. The screws should be turned counter-clockwise to decrease compression, and clockwise to increase it.

It’s worthwhile to carefully review the owner’s manual for the manufacturer’s specific directions.

4. Turn both screws clockwise to decrease compression

The chainsaw is a handy tool to have around, but it’s important to know how to adjust the compression on the chainsaw in order to get the best performance from the saw.

Turning both screws clockwise will decrease compression and make the chainsaw easier to start.

5. Replace the cover and screw it in tight

If the saw is cutting slowly or not at all, it may be because the compression is too high. You can also use a lower compression setting to reduce the amount of kickback the saw experiences.

This can make it easier to control, especially when starting the saw. Finally, if you’re using a chainsaw to cut particularly hard material, lowering the compression can help the saw to stay running longer.

6. Reattach the spark plug and start the chainsaw

A chainsaw is a tool that is used to cut through wood. It has a motor that spins a chain that moves back and forth and cuts the wood.

The chainsaw can be dangerous to use if the compression is too high. The compression can be lowered by reattaching the spark plug.

What are the symptoms of low compression?

Chainsaws have become a popular tool for homeowners and professionals alike. However, if the chainsaw chain is not properly tensioned, it can lead to dangerous and even deadly consequences. Here are the six most common symptoms of low compression in chainsaws:

  • The chain will jerk or jump when you try to start or stop the saw.
  • The chain will bind or skip when you attempt to cut through tough materials.
  • The motor may start smoking or making strange noises.
  • The chain may break easily, causing heavy damage to your equipment.
  • The saw may even start spontaneously combusting.
  • In extreme cases, the operator could lose their arm or be seriously injured due to an uncontrolled chain reaction.

How To Lower Compression On A Chainsaw?

How much compression should a chainsaw have?

Chainsaws are inherently dangerous tools and should only be used by experienced professionals. To reduce the risk of injury, chainsaw compression should be at least 12:1.

However, for general cutting tasks, a chainsaw with a compression ratio of 8:1 or less is adequate. While higher compression ratios provide better cuts, they also increase wear and tear on the chain and bar. For most homeowners, it’s best to stick with a compression ratio of around 6:1 to 8:1.

Will a chainsaw run with low compression?

Chainsaws can run poorly with low compression, potentially causing the engine to overheat and fail. This is because chainsaws require high compression to turn the engine efficiently, and when the compression is low, the engine works harder than it should.

If the chainsaw has been neglected or not maintained properly, it may suffer from low compression levels. If you notice your chainsaw struggling to start or running very poorly, it might be time to have the compression checked or replaced.

What causes too much compression in a chainsaw?

Chainsaws are typically used to cut wood, but they can also be used for other tasks such as carving or cutting plastic. Chainsaws use a chain and a saw blade to cut through the material.

The chain is connected to the saw blade and pulled back and forth across the wood. This movement causes the saw blade to move up and down, which cuts into the wood. The chainsaw is designed with a certain amount of compression, or pressure so that it can cut through hardwood.

However, if the chainsaw is used improperly or if there is too much compression in the chain, it can lead to problems. There are several factors that can cause too much compression in a chainsaw: improper maintenance, overloading the saw, using an incorrect chain size, and using an incorrect blade size.

How do you increase compression on a chainsaw?

When increasing compression on a chainsaw, it is important to keep the chain tension high and the bar speed low. By doing so, you can maintain the saw’s sharpness while making it more powerful.

Additionally, using a tool with an adequate amount of compression can help prevent wear and tear on your saw blade.


In conclusion, following these steps will help reduce compression on a chainsaw, and make your cuts smoother and cleaner. Remember to always take into account the safety of yourself and those around you, and to use proper caution when working with a chainsaw.

You might like our article on How To Untangle Chainsaw Chain.

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