Motor Oil for Chainsaw: One of the good alternatives

Have you ever heard of 2T oil – another name for two-stroke engine oil? If not, read on to find out more because it is important that you understand everything about chainsaws before you buy or operate one. First, you need to know that there are two types of oil used to improve the operation of a chainsaw. For a gasoline-powered chainsaw, you will need motor oil and bar/chain oil for lubrication. An electric chainsaw only requires the latter for efficient operation.

If you have been around most gas-powered tools and machines, you will realise that they use a mixture of gasoline and oil as their fuel. This is mandatory, and will discuss the reasons later in this article. Bar and chain oil, on the other hand, has its chamber and its purpose is to keep the chain and bar lubricated throughout the process. So, why do you need motor oil in your chainsaw?

Motor Oil for Chainsaw

The Functions of Motor Oil

It might seem like something you can forego but mixing gasoline with a little oil when refilling improves the performance of your chainsaw. Motor oil is like the blood of your chainsaw’s engine. It is possible to run a chainsaw with only gasoline most of the moving parts in the engine will be damaged even before you complete your third task.

The main purpose of any oil is lubrication, and motor oil is no exception. The engine of a chainsaw, like any other, has many moving parts that work together to achieve the desired output. These components come into contact with each other during movement and that generates some friction. This is one force that you don’t want in your engine. In fact, the more it builds up, the more the components wear out. Motor oil comes in as a lubricant and reduces the rubbing effect.

Also, during operation, a lot of heat is generated between the parts mentioned above. There is, therefore, a need for a cooling system. The motor oil transfers heat away from these components hence acting as a coolant.

Another quite important function of motor oil in chainsaws is cleaning of the engine. As it moves around various parts of the engine, the oil picks up debris and other unwanted particles that might have been trapped within the area. Motor oil also protects various components and engine walls from corrosion. It does so by reducing oxidation due to additives.

The rate of fuel consumption is one of the main factors that most people consider before buying a chainsaw or any gas-powered machine. To reduce fuel consumption, it is advisable to add motor oil to gasoline. As such, the moving components in the engine become slipperier and less force is required to move them.

Composition of Chainsaw Oil

Typical chainsaw oil is composed of refined mineral oils. It also has anti-wear corrosion and oxidation inhibitors. Besides, a tack additive is included so that the oil can stick to the parts that need lubrication.

The Standard Ratio of gas to oil

As you mix gasoline with motor oil, you should consider the correct ratio for that particular chainsaw. Every manufacturer specifies the ratio that is suitable for the engine installed in the saw, but it is usually around 30:1 per unit volume. What happens if you put too much oil or insufficient oil?

Let us start with a scenario where you have added more oil to your chainsaw’s engine than the recommended amount. This might lead to engine overload due to the production of excessive oil soot which blocks the suction hose. As such, it might end up damaging the engine or any other related part. When you add insufficient oil to your chainsaw’s fuel, there will be more friction and overheating within the engine.

The Best Motor Oil for Chainsaws

Universal Low Smoke 2T

Universal Low Smoke 2T

This high-quality two-stroke oil has been designed to work almost any two-stroke engine. The manufacturers suggest that it is ideal for handheld products such as chainsaws. When mixing, the recommended ratio is 50:1; in other words, 0.1L is enough for a five-litre bottle of fuel.

Explorer 2T Oil

Manufactured by Explorer, this motor oil is packed in a small black bottle that is easy to open. Among its additives is a fuel stabiliser that ensures the gasoline does not combust when it is not required.

Buzzard Creek Supply 3 STIHL 2T

Buzzard Creek Supply 3 STIHL 2T

Manufactured and supplied by STIHL, the world’s renowned chainsaw manufacturer, Buzzard Creek Supply is among the best motor oils for chainsaws. It is designed specifically for chainsaws; so, you can rest assured that it will accomplish whatever it is supposed to.

AMSOIL Saber Professional Synthetic 2T

AMSOIL Saber Professional Synthetic 2T

Finally, we have a brand that can be mixed using nearly any ratio recommended by the chainsaw manufacturer. Amsoil Saber professional Synthetic is affordable blue oil from a company known as Amsoil. Another thing that puts it on this list is the fact that it has low smoke properties. As such, you will not only be saving your financial side of life but the environment for the better of tomorrow.


There are various types of chainsaw motor oil in the market, but not every one of them can be used in your chainsaw. Before buying new oil, please consider the manufacturer’s manual to avoid any frustrations. Also, ensure that you understand the mix ratio recommended for your chainsaw and the oil you’ve just bought.

Read more:

Biodegradable bar and chain oil: Can you use it?

Best 2 stroke oil for chainsaw

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