Stihl Chainsaw Won’t Start: How To Fix In 5 Steps

fixing chiansaw

Chainsaws are very important tools that each homeowner needs to have in order to make sure that they can easily trim or cut trees in their properties. Chainsaws are also very useful when it comes to cutting large logs so you can use it for firewood. This is why many people want only to buy quality chainsaws.

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Unfortunately, no matter how expensive or how reliable your chainsaw is, you need to understand that it will have to go through the proper maintenance services every now and then. You should also know that with continued use, the chainsaw will go through wear and tear as well as unexpected failures.

When it comes to reliable chainsaws, the products made by Stihl are arguably one of the best that you can buy in the market today. Unfortunately, it does not mean that they are bound to never break down. In fact, in some cases a Stihl chainsaw won’t start. Here’s what you need to know to fix it properly.

Things That You Will Need

1. A Flat Surface

wood planks

This will be used so that you can properly inspect your chainsaw. You can use a work table if you have one or you can use an area in your property that is properly levelled and one that does not have any obstructions. You should also look for a location that has adequate lighting.

2. Work Gloves

work gloves

Depending on what type of chainsaw you are using, you will have to handle the chainsaw’s sharp blades, electrical wiring, greasy motor parts or oil and gasoline. To protect your hands, you will need to have the proper work gloves. If you do not have any, you can always opt for rubber gloves instead.

3. New Gasoline And Oil


This will be used to power up gasoline chainsaws since in most cases, gasoline that has been left in the tank for several months will no longer work properly. If your chainsaw does not run on gasoline, you might want to put in new batteries instead or use a working power source.

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4. The Owner’s Manual

searching on google

This will help you know your chainsaw better. The manual might indicate common problems that you might encounter while using your chainsaw and it can also tell you how to fix them. If you do not have one, you can always go online to try to search for it.

5. A Spark Plug

a spark plug

You might have to buy one if your old spark plug has been damaged or is no longer working properly.

6. A Siphon Pump

siphon pump

You will need this to remove old fuel in the chainsaw’s fuel tank. You can use a small hose or a rubber tubing with a large syringe to try to aspirate the fuel in the tank.

7. Plastic Measuring Containers

Plastic Measuring Containers

You will have to use it to measure gasoline and oil. You can make it your own if you want to using old plastic bottles and properly measured water. Never use them again for other types of chemicals. Avoid using measuring tools that are for cooking.

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Fixing The Stihl Chainsaw That Won't Start

Step 1: Do A Visual Inspection

a stihl chainsaw

Using a flat surface as well as your owner’s manual, inspect your chainsaw for any easily identifiable problems. You can try to look at the switch so you will know the chainsaw is in the ON position and you can also check the tank if it was previously drained. Try to get rid of any debris on any part of the unit.

Step 2: Check The Spark Plug

spark plugs

The spark plug is the part of the chainsaw that will help ignite the mixture of fuel and air in the unit. If it is damaged or if it is not placed properly, the chainsaw will not start. With your work gloves on, you can try to remove it, put it into a plug wire and let it come into contact with a metal part of the chain saw.

If you were able to see a spark, then this is not the cause of your problem. If there was no spark, you can disconnect it and try to clean it a bit with a wire brush. Put it back into the chainsaw properly and try to turn the chainsaw back on. You will have to buy a new one if the spark plug is no longer working.

Step 3: Check The Fuel

pouring oil into chainsaw

If the fuel inside the chainsaw has not been drained properly, it might no longer work. Using a drain pump, make sure that you are going to remove all of it. Using your measuring containers, mix the right amount of gasoline and oil as indicated by the manufacturer. Never store gasoline in the tank again.

Step 4: Lookout For A Flooded Engine

checking chainsaw

When putting fresh gasoline and oil in the tank, you need to be careful not to put too much oil. Before you try to start it again, you should check the spark plug for moisture. If it is wet, you will need to drain the fuel through the spark plug socket, dry off the area and put in a new one.

Step 5: Check The Air Filter


In most cases, the chainsaw will not work simply because the air filter is clogged or dirty. This results in the engine using too much gas and not enough air. You can also tell that this is happening when it seems like the chainsaw is always on choke. Clean the air filter properly and try to turn on the chainsaw again.


Stihl chainsaws are known to be some of the best in the market today. However, even if they are very reliable, you will have to use it properly and do maintenance checks and services on a regular basis so you can avoid failures. Follow the steps properly and call a repair technician if it still does not work.

Last update on 2021-01-20 at 01:52 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About the Author Emily Taylor

My name is Emily Taylor, gardening is my passion and I’m looking forward to sharing it with everyone. I know that there are millions of people out there want their backyard and garden be attractive just like their front yard, so I am here to help you create your own backyard paradise.

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