Stihl Vs. Husqvarna Chainsaw (7 Differences To Know)

With many fantastic power tool manufacturers out there, choosing the right brand can seem like a daunting decision. After all, while certain brands may manufacture similar tools, they may be catering to different markets and skill levels. If you’re wondering how the chainsaws produced by Stihl compare to those manufactured by Husqvarna, this is what you need to know! 

While buyers tend to prefer Stihl’s chainsaws for personal use, Husqvarna is preferred by professionals. Husqvarna chainsaws cut faster and have better warranties but cost more. Stihl’s products are cheaper and easier to maintain. Both Stihl and Husqvarna chainsaws utilize modern safety switches. 

If you are struggling to compare these two great chainsaw brands, we’re here to help! First, we’ll compare Stihl and Husqvarna’s chainsaws. Once we’ve done this, we’ll give you an overview of these two brands. Finally, we’ll outline considerations that should be made when purchasing a chainsaw.  

stihl vs husqvarna

Stihl Chainsaws Vs. Husqvarna Chainsaws: How Do They Compare? 

Once you’ve gone through the following points, you should have a better idea of which chainsaw brand is more suited to your needs. 

Stihl ChainsawsHusqvarna Chainsaws
Torque3.49 Nm 3.49 Nm
Weight Lighter weight Generally heavier 
Warranty1-Year Limited Warranty for personal use2-Year Limited Warranty for personal use 
Fuel CapacitySmaller fuel tanks Larger fuel tanks 
Fuel Efficiency and EmissionsGood fuel efficiency Better fuel efficiency 
MaintenanceModerate maintenance requiredHigher maintenance required
AvailabilityMost popular, widely available brand Available from most retailers 
PriceHomeowner saws range from $200 to $500
Professional chainsaws range from $600 to $1,500
Homeowner saws range from $200 to $500
Professional chainsaws range from $600 to $1,500

#1: Husqvarna Chainsaws Are Known To Cut Faster 

Ultimately, both Husqvarna and Stihl produce chainsaws of varying types and sizes. Comparing the cutting speed of a corded-electric Husqvarna chainsaw to that of a gas-powered Stihl chainsaw will naturally yield inconclusive results. At the end of the day, your cutting speed will largely be determined by the factors discussed in the first section of this article. 

However, when chainsaws with similar specifications from both brands are compared, there’s a general consensus among woodworkers that Husqvarna’s chainsaws cut faster and more efficiently than those manufactured by Stihl. If you’re looking for a model that will allow you to make clean cuts faster, you’ll want to consider Husqvarna’s selection of chainsaws. 

#2: Stihl Chainsaws Have More Powerful Engines  

Stihl’s chainsaws are well-known for their superior engine power when compared to other chainsaw brands. When comparing the horsepower per engine size between Stihl and Husqvarna, consumers will find that their engines tend to offer more horsepower when compared to Husqvarna chainsaw models. 

However, despite having more engine power, the chainsaws manufactured by Stihl are not as fast as the models produced by Husqvarna. For tougher cuts, the additional power of a Stihl chainsaw will come in handy for many buyers. 

#3: Husqvarna chainsaws Have Better Safety Features  

husqvarna chainsaw

In terms of safety, all chainsaws are subject to certain safety requirements. Both Husqvarna and Stihl chainsaws utilize an all-in-one safety switch. With these safety mechanisms, the chainsaws produced by both brands meet the necessary safety standards. However, which features the better all-in-one safety switch for maximum protection? 

With Stihl chainsaws, users can move their thumb upwards to switch off their chainsaws. However, with Husqvarna’s chainsaws, this switch is inversed, and users must move their thumb downwards to switch off the chainsaw. While both all-in-one safety switches provided adequate safety, users find Husqvarna’s switch the more natural of the two. 

#4: Stihl Chainsaws Are More Affordable 

On average, the chainsaws manufactured by Stihl are cheaper and more affordable than those sold by Husqvarna. Generally, this difference in price comes down to certain design specifications. For one, the guide bars and fuel tanks are typically smaller on Stihl’s chainsaw models. Furthermore, plastic crankcases are utilized by Stihl’s chainsaws. 

If you’re looking for a model that won’t destroy your tool budget, then you’re sure to find the selection offered by Stihl to be highly satisfactory. For personal use, the chainsaws produced by Stihl are preferred by consumers who need an affordable and effective chain saw. 

#5: Husqvarna Caters To Professionals 

While consumers tend to prefer Stihl’s chainsaws for personal use, professionals tend to prefer Husqvarna’s chainsaw selection. The reason for this is linked to the design of these chainsaws, as briefly discussed above. The lightweight nature of Stihl’s chainsaws makes them the perfect choice for smaller jobs. 

However, when you’re a professional who needs superior running times from their chainsaw, you might be better off with a Husqvarna chainsaw. With their larger fuel tanks, Husqvarna’s chainsaws are always up to the task. That’s why professionals prefer them! 

#6: Stihl Chainsaws Are Low Maintenance 

stihl chainsaw

Given that Husqvarna caters more to professionals, their chainsaws require more detailed maintenance. The chainsaws manufactured by Stihl, on the other hand, are notoriously easy to maintain. When it comes down to the level of maintenance required by the chainsaws from these different brands, Stihl comes out on top. 

At the end of the day, regardless of the brand, you go with, all chainsaw models will require a certain level of maintenance. However, if you prefer chainsaws that require less maintenance, then the chainsaws manufactured by Stihl will be perfectly suited to your needs. 

#7: Husqvarna Offers A Longer Warranty 

With many of Husqvarna’s chainsaws, a competitive warranty is provided. During the warranty period, Husqvarna will repair or replace any defective product at no extra charge. For personal use, this warranty is valid for two years. For professional or commercial use, their warranty will range between ninety days and one year, depending on the model. All XP model Husqvarna chainsaws have a one-year warranty. 

For Stihl’s electric and gas-powered chainsaws, a one-year limited warranty is included for personal use. For professional and commercial uses, Stihl’s chainsaws only have a limited warranty period of three months. If you’re looking for a competitive warranty, you’ll want to opt for that Husqvarna chainsaw. 

An Overview Of Stihl’s Chainsaws 

stihl

When it comes to the power tool brands currently available, Stihl is one of the most recognizable brands. After all, Stihl has nearly a century of experience manufacturing chainsaws and other power tools. In 1926, the same year Stihl was founded, the founder, Andreas Stihl, hand-built his first chain saw from his own design. 

During the 1950s, Stihl released their first single-operator chainsaw. Of course, most chainsaws today only require a single operator to be used. At Stihl, modern chainsaws are designed with smaller fuel tanks. Not only does this make the chainsaw lighter, but it allows for smoother handling of the chainsaw overall while using it.  Somewhat seventy years after the release of their first single-operator chainsaw, Stihl is now considered one of the world’s leading and top-selling chain saw brands. 

On Stihl’s official website, ‘Chainsaws’ is one of the main product categories. This category is comprised of fifteen subcategories. In terms of chainsaws, the different categories are: Battery Saws; Homeowner Saws; Farm and Ranch Saws; Professional Saws; Electric Saws; In-Tree Saws; and Rescue Saws. The remainder of the subcategories are dedicated to chainsaw components and accessories. These include saw chains, guide bars, filing tools, and cases. 

stihl chainsaw wood

As a brand, Stihl is a popular choice for people looking to buy a chainsaw for personal use. Due to their lightweight nature, Stihl’s chainsaws are easier to handle for smaller or more delicate jobs. 

Stihl is widely accessible to many people, being sold in more than 160 countries across the world. Although Stihl is one of the world’s top-selling chainsaw brands, it’s not the only best-selling chainsaw brand.

An Overview Of Husqvarna’s Chainsaws 

husqvarna

Founded in 1689, The Husqvarna Group is a well-established Swedish manufacturer of various power tools and products. In the 1950s, Husqvarna observed an increase in foresing activities. Due to this, the company extended its knowledge of engines even further and manufactured its first chainsaw in 1959. 

On Husqvarna’s official website, one of the main product categories is ‘Chainsaws and Forestry Tools’. The ‘Chainsaw’ subsection is then further divided into seven subcategories. In terms of chain saw options, there are four subcategories: Battery Chainsaws; Gas Chainsaws; Professional Chainsaws; and Top Handle Chainsaws. 

The remaining subcategories in the ‘Chainsaw’ subsection include Chainsaw Bars, Chainsaw Chains, and Chainsaw Parts. For those who already own one of Husqvarna’s robust chainsaws, the official website makes it easier than ever to purchase replacement components for your chainsaw. 

husqvarna chainsaw shop

In terms of chainsaw brands, Husqvarna is one of the most recognizable names out there. The chainsaws produced by Husqvarna are widely considered to be among the best in the industry. Their chainsaws also come equipped with highly competitive warranties that back up Husqvarna’s dedication to manufacturing stellar products. 

For the above reasons, Husqvarna is often favored by professionals. In fact, Professional Chainsaws is the second-largest chainsaw product category on the official website. The Professional Chainsaws category includes Husqvarna’s popular XP range. These models are equipped with Husqvarna’s Pro Chainsaw Warranty. 

At the end of the day, however, not everyone needs a professional-grade chainsaw. For many homeowners, an affordable, lightweight chainsaw will do just fine. Ultimately, the chainsaw brand you decide to go for will depend on your specific needs. Read on as we compare Husqvarna and Stihl’s chainsaws to help you make your decision!

Here are some of our recommendations 

Choosing the right chainsaw is important, both if you’re making a new private purchase, or if you are a working professional! 

There is no doubt that both Stihl and Husqvarna make high quality saws. Here are some of our tried and tested favorites from both brands:

Stihl Chainsaws 

Stihl chainsaws have a long history of reliability and performance. 

The brand is often the choice of professionals and discerning homeowners who require robust and efficient equipment for their tasks. 

If you are thinking of buying a Stihl chainsaw, it is important to note that specific features and models may vary, and the choice of a Stihl chainsaw should be based on individual needs and tasks. Here are some of our favorites from Stihl!

Stihl MS 170

Highlight: Reliable Performance in a Compact Package

The Stihl MS 170 chainsaw is our go to choice for a compact and lightweight chainsaw that delivers reliable cutting power. 

The saw itself weighs only 4.0kg, and has a 30.1cc engine. This makes it an ideal tool for homeowners and DIY enthusiasts who are looking for an everyday saw who do not want to compromise on power! 

Stihl MS 250

Highlight: Impressive Power and Versatility

The Stihl MS 250 has a robust 45.4cc engine that packs a punch, while maintaining a lightweight ergonomic design make it a reliable choice for a wide range of cutting tasks. 

It can easily cut through branches up to 20” diameter whilst only weighing 4.5kg. 

Stihl MS 271 FARM BOSS® 

Highlight: Trusted Reliability for Farming

The Stihl MS 271 FARM BOSS® chainsaw is one of our favorites for around the farm. 

This saw is designed especially for farmer’s versatile need; from cutting firewood to clearing brush and maintaining your property, the Stihl MS 271 FARM BOSS is a great choice! 

It contains a  2.6kW engine, and has an anti-vibration system to optimize user comfort.

Husqvarna Chainsaws 

Husqvarna is a well-known manufacturer of outdoor power equipment. Their chainsaws are highly regarded for their quality, performance, and durability. 

Husqvarna offers a diverse range of chainsaws designed to meet the needs of both homeowners and professional users. Here are some of our favorite models:

Husqvarna 120 Mark II 

Highlight: User friendly for Homeowners

The Husqvarna 120 Mark II chainsaw is our personal favorite for homeowners, thanks to its user-friendly performance. 

The compact design makes it easy to use for cutting firewood, pruning, and maintaining your property. The smaller 38cc engine helps to reduce fuel consumption, making it both lightweight and economical! 

Husqvarna 440 

Highlight: Balanced Performance for Varied Tasks

The Husqvarna 440 chainsaw is one of our favorites for its balanced performance. This saw is suitable for a wide range of cutting tasks. 

Whether you’re a homeowner or professional, this chainsaw offers a mix of power and maneuverability. 

It boasts a powerful 40cc engine, which is paired with LowVib Technology allowing for both power and comfortable use. 

Husqvarna 455 Rancher 

Highlight: Robust Power for Demanding Jobs

The Husqvarna 455 Rancher chainsaw makes it on our favorites list thanks to its robust power. 

This chainsaw offers high performance and power, making it a dependable choice for more challenging jobs such as felling trees and cutting large timber. 

The gas-powered saw has a strong 3.49-HP X-Torq engine that helps reduce fuel consumption and gasoline emissions. 

Considerations To Make When Purchasing A Chainsaw 

chainsaw

When you’re looking to purchase a new chainsaw, there are several considerations that should be kept in mind. From the type of chainsaw that you’re interested in buying to the different brand choices, we’ll break down these considerations for you. Ultimately, these factors will help you compare different chainsaws when making your final purchasing decision. 

#1: Consider The Type Of Chainsaw You’re Looking For 

When purchasing a chainsaw – regardless of which brand you decide to go with – you need to carefully consider the type of chainsaw you want to purchase. After all, there are a few different chainsaw variants for you to choose from! 

Gas-powered chainsaws are one of these variants. These chainsaws are fast, efficient, and produce clean cuts. These chainsaws are capable of running continuously, making them the perfect choice for those with their work cut out for them. However, these chainsaws are known to be heavier than electric variants. 

In terms of electric chainsaws, there are two main types. The first type is the corded-electric chainsaw, which needs to be plugged in during use. Not only do these chainsaws weigh less, but they’re also more affordable. The corded nature can limit your range of motion. 

The other type of electric chainsaw is battery powered. Generally, these variants will cost more than corded ones. Often this variant can cost as much as the gas-powered variant. While performance is on par with that of a gas-powered chainsaw, you’re only looking at an estimated forty minutes of usage before needing to charge the battery. 

#2: Consider The Length Of The Chainsaw’s Guide Bar 

As a rule of thumb, a chainsaw’s guide bar length is always measured from the tip of the chain to where the guide bar enters the housing. There will be many different guide bar lengths for you to choose from. Ultimately, the length you choose will correlate with the material you want to cut. 

Ideally, your chainsaw’s guide bar should be at least two inches longer than the material you wish to cut. For homeowners, a guide bar up to fourteen inches long should be sufficient. However, for heavy-duty cutting, a guide bar ranging between 24- and 36-inches will likely be needed. 

#3: Consider The Chainsaw’s Engine Power 

Above, we looked at how your intended uses for your chainsaw impact the length of the guide bar you’ll need. However, your intended uses will also determine the amount of engine power you’ll need from your chainsaw.

For lighter work, such as trimming branches, you’ll want to consider chainsaws with 31-cc to 34-cc engines. For moderate work, buyers should instead opt for a chainsaw with a 55-cc engine. For heavy-duty work, buyers will instead want to opt for a chainsaw with an engine that ranges between 65-cc and 110-cc. 

#4: Consider The Chainsaw’s Safety Features 

When choosing the perfect chainsaw for you, you need to consider included safety features. This is of the utmost importance when operating a chainsaw. One safety feature you’ll want to look out for is a chain brake, which will allow you to effectively halt the chainsaw’s chain between your cuts. 

Another great safety feature is known as a chain catcher. Chainsaw chains have been known to snap, which can injure someone in the process. With a chain catcher mechanism, however, this mechanism will catch the chain before it has the chance to reach your hand. 

#5: Consider Different Chainsaw Brands 

With the previous considerations still in mind, you’ll also want to consider the different brands that are available out there. While different brands may produce similar products, they may differ in terms of price, quality, and target audience. When it comes down to chainsaw brands, Stihl and Husqvarna are two of the most well-known brands – but how do they compare? 

Conclusion

For those looking to purchase a new chainsaw, there are many fantastic options from both Stihl and Husqvarna. Ultimately, the brand you go with depends on your needs. If you’re looking for an affordable chainsaw that will be designated for personal use, you’ll love the selection offered by Stihl. However, if you need a more professional chainsaw with a comprehensive warranty, you’ll love the options Husqvarna has to offer!

FAQs

Why do loggers use Husqvarna chainsaws?

Loggers will often opt for Husqvarna saws due to their combination of powerful engines and high cutting performance. 

Husqvarna chainsaws can easily handle large, thick trees and are built to withstand the rigors of demanding logging work. 

Their saws are also designed with inbuilt safety features such as chain brakes, anti-vibration systems, and handguards to reduce the risk of accidents and logging injuries.

How long will a Husqvarna chainsaw last?

The lifespan of a Husqvarna chainsaw varies significantly based on factors such as the model, usage, and the amount of maintenance you do. 

However, a well maintained Husqvarna saw that is properly cared for can last upwards of 10 years.

What is the most powerful Husqvarna chainsaw?

The most powerful Husqvarna chainsaw available on the market is the Husqvarna 3120 XP!

This chainsaw is especially designed for professional and heavy-duty use and comes equipped with a 118.8 cc engine, with a power output of 8.7 Hp. 

This makes it one of the go to choices for large-scale tree felling, milling, and other heavy-duty tasks.

Why are Stihl chainsaws so hard to start?

Stihl chainsaws, like many other gas-powered chainsaws, can sometimes be challenging to start. 

There may be numerous reasons for this. However, some of the most common issues for Stihl chainsaws may include worn carburetors, bad spark plugs, loose fuel hoses, or clogged fuel lines.

What does MS stand for on a Stihl chainsaw?

You’ll often see ‘MS’ as a prefix in Stihl model names. The MS stands for the German word ‘Motorsäge’, which translates to ‘motor saw’ or ‘chainsaw’ in English.

What is the most powerful chainsaw STIHL makes?

The most powerful chainsaw that Stihl offers is the Stihl MS 881 Magnum. Stihl designed this model for professional use in forestry and other large-scale tree felling. 

It comes armed with a 121.6 cc engine and has an 8.7Hp power output, making it their most powerful chainsaw yet!

Photo of author

Barry Gray

Hi, I’m Barry. I’ve loved woodworking and bringing things back to life for more years than I care to remember. I hope my passion for tools comes across loud and clear in everything you read here on The Tool Square.

7 thoughts on “Stihl Vs. Husqvarna Chainsaw (7 Differences To Know)”

  1. The entire La Plata county fire department uses Stihl chainsaws. Stihl chainsaws are not inexpensive. This seems an awful lot like push article for Husqvarna.

    Reply
  2. I am a forester so have some knowledge about professional loggers using different saws. Not all professional sawyers use Husqvarnas . Last time I checked prices on the largest saws stihl and husqvarna sell the price difference was around $100 .
    Both companies make 50cc engine saws some models are in the $250-$300 price range some twice or $500=$600. Husqvarna professional model have the XP on the size . Stihl identifies their some saws as professional. example ms 261, ms 461, ms 660, Both companies make professional saws. Both companies make quality production chainsaws. Echo has large saws I dont know about Echo saws.

    Reply
  3. I’m a veteran and bought a Husquvarna from Lowes. It wouldn’t start. I took it back to Lowes and the manager hurt his shoulder trying to start it. They then offered me another one when I told them I want my money back. So I took this second one home and it wouldn’t start also. The second time the manager looked at me and laughed he’s taking my word for it this time and gave me a gift card.

    Reply
  4. Buy the saw from your servicing dealer. What’re ever brand they sell. Echo is also a great choice. After you’re done, dump the gas and run it dry.

    Reply
  5. I have worked around arborists and professional tree cutters most of my life. I have yet to see a professional using Huskvarna saws.

    Reply

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