When it comes to power, the GreenWorks 20332 14.5 Amp 18-Inch Corded Chainsaw is right at the top of the range for an electric saw.
GreenWorks are well known for their cordless battery ranges of power tools. The 20332 is the second corded saw in their tool selection and is the 20232's big brother.
With a larger bar and more powerful engine, it is well suited to carrying out more demanding tasks than the 20232 and it comes at a price which doesn't break the bank.
Read the rest of our review to discover more.
Performance and Handling
The 20332 has been designed to handle light and medium cutting duties around the home and yard. It will take care of all your pruning and fire log cutting jobs, as well as felling trees and removing buttress roots.
With its 18 inch blade and powerful motor, the saw is capable of cutting through a 16 inch diameter log in a single pass. It also makes clearing fallen debris very easy. As well as being a clean and environmentally friendly alternative to a gas saw, the 20332 is both easy to start and operate.
To start up, it is simply a case of checking the chain tension, ensuring the oil reservoir is filled, activating the safety lock button and then pressing the throttle trigger. The saw will start immediately. Once the trigger is released, the safety lock button returns to its original position and the cutting components will coast to a halt within a few seconds.
Weighing just under 12lbs. the 20332 isn’t too heavy and should be within the handling capabilities of anyone used to operating power tools. The wrap around front handle should ensure good control over the saw when cutting at different angles. The size of the blade means it might not be best suited to cutting in tight spaces but the saw has sufficient weight to make it a good choice for bucking logs.
As with most electric saws, it shouldn’t be used in wet and damp conditions and the fact that an extension cord is required means that access to a power supply is required. Extra care is needed to ensure that the cord doesn’t get in the way of cutting and contact with metal objects should be avoided.
Watch the video below to discover more about this saw.
When it comes to homeowner electric saws, 18 inch bars are about as big as it gets.
On the GreenWorks, both bar and chain are Oregon products so the quality of the cutting components can be assured.
The guide bar has a narrow nose radius, which gives it reduced kickback qualities. The bar has a nose sprocket, which helps the chain move more easily around the bar and therefore improves cutting performance. As most experienced chainsaw users will know, this type of bar has a nose sprocket hole on the tip of the bar which must be regularly greased to maintain optimum performance. This is a simple task which can be carried out with a $10 grease gun.
The chain is the popular sized 3/8” pitch, 0.05” gauge and 63 drive links. The chain needs to be kept correctly
tensioned to ensure that it doesn’t slip the bar and the GreenWorks has a tool-less system to help with this. All this involves is loosening the chain cover locking knob, then turning the tensioning knob until the correct tension is achieved. When the chain is cold, this should be tight enough so that when the chain is pulled away from the bottom of the bar, the links snap immediately back into place when the chain is released. You should still be able to move the chain around the bar by hand (if not then you have over-tightened).
Some users mentioned they had issues with the chain slipping from the bar so it is important, especially in the early days that the tension is checked regularly. (After each few cuts if necessary).
Keeping the cutting components in tip top condition is also critical for best performance and this means sharpening the chain. You have several options here. You can do it yourself if you are proficient at this sort of thing or believe it is a skill you can pick up. (Bear in mind that a high degree of skill is required when doing this). Alternatively, you can arrange to have the chain sharpened locally or buy new chains (a couple of new chains will cost about $30.)
If you plan on maintaining your own cutting gear, then you will need a 5/32” round file and holder together with a flat file.
Design and Construction
The 20332 is a traditionally designed chainsaw in the GreenWorks style.
The rear handle has an ergonomically designed, rubberized grip for user comfort. On the right hand side of the saw you will find the tool-less chain tensioning buttons, which are large and easy to operate. The oil cap is positioned on top of the powerhead unit, allowing bar oil to be added easily and without fuss. On the front of the unit is a set of bumper spikes to enable steadier cutting as well as the front hand guard which, when pushed into a forward position, acts as a chain brake.
The diagram above shows the position of the trigger switch in relation to the switch lock and as you can see they are very close together. Also shown is the oil reservoir window, handy for keeping a close check on the oil situation.
A few buyers mentioned that they had experienced issues with the saw malfunctioning shortly after purchase. This may indicate some minor quality issues with some of the products. It should, however, be pointed out that these users received immediate replacements under the terms of the warranty and these worked without problem.
Brushed 14.5 Amp Motor
When it comes to homeowner electric saws, the maximum power you will find is 15 amps so the GreenWorks is right up there with its 14.5 Amp motor.
The motor has 1,700 watts (running watts) and start up watts of 2,400. If you are going to run the saw from a generator, you need to ensure that it has sufficient power to handle this. The motor is capable of generating around 2.3HP, although as motors are not 100% efficient it is unlikely this will be achieved. That said, this motor has more than enough power to handle the tasks for which it was designed.
An extension cord will be required to use the saw and this should be suitable for outdoor use and be the appropriate gauge. If you have a 50 foot cord this should be a MINIMUM 12 gauge (a higher gauge such a 10 would be better) and if using a 100 foot cord, the gauge should be a MINIMUM of 10. Using a gauge with the wrong rating can lead to the motor overheating and being damaged.
As far as the motor is concerned, this is a brushed design. These aren’t as efficient as the newer ‘brushless’ designed motors, however they will still do the job and help to keep the product costs down.
Chain Oil System
Keeping the cutting components properly oiled is important to maintain cutting performance and to prevent damage.
The GreenWorks has an automatic oiling system to feed oil to the cutting equipment. It is a fixed flow system which means the rate of flow can’t be adjusted and this is the most common type of lubrication system on electric saws.
The oil level should be checked after every 20 minutes and refilled as necessary. Checking oil levels is simple thanks to the semi-transparent reservoir window, allowing you to see at a glance when levels are getting low. There is a marking which shows the minimum level.
You should use a good quality bar and chain oil, designed to work over a range of temperatures with no dilution required. The oil is added through the easily accessible oil cap on top of the powerhead.
You should be aware that oil will seep from this saw when in storage so you should give some careful thought as to where it is stored. The manufacturer recommends that the reservoir is emptied after use and the saw run for a minute to get rid of excess oil.
No oil is supplied with this purchase.
The 20322 has all the safety features you would expect to see on a modern chainsaw, including;
- Reduced kickback bar and low kickback chain, which meets the ANSI B175.1 standard in relation to chainsaw safety. These reduce, though not eliminate, the likelihood and severity of kickback.
- Front and rear hand guards to protect the user’s hands from being struck by debris or coming into contact with the chain. Wearing suitable gloves is recommended.
- Automatic chain brake. In the event of severe kickback this mechanical brake will activate and is designed to bring the chain to a stop in a fraction of a second. This will reduce the likelihood of injury (but is no guarantee to prevent it completely).
- Safety lock. This must be engaged before the throttle will work, preventing accidental start-up of the saw.
- Bumper (or bucking spikes). This is a set of large metal spikes on the front of the powerhead. They are used to grip and pivot the saw on the wood to provide stability when cutting.
These features certainly help. However, using the saw correctly and wearing the right safety equipment and clothing will add that further layer of protection.
Weighing 11.75lbs, this isn’t the lightest electric saw out there. However, for a saw of this size it is pretty standard. If you are healthy and used to handling reasonably heavy tools then the 20322 should be well within your capabilities.
This product comes with an operator’s manual and a protective bar sheath.
- Cuts well
- Easy to start and operate
- Excellent warranty
- Chain tension needs frequent checking and adjustment
- A few quality issues reported
Almost 80% of buyers rate the saw as either excellent or good. This is in line with other ratings for similar saws in this class, although there are a few stand out performers – such as the Worx WG303.1 - which in my view offers slightly better value.
You should buy this saw if:
• You want an easy to start and operate chainsaw.
• You have light/moderate cutting tasks to carry out on an occasional basis.
• You want a reasonably inexpensive saw.
You should not buy this saw if:
• You want a very lightweight saw.
• You have a lot of heavy duty cutting work to undertake.
This product is backed by a limited 4 year warranty against defects in materials, parts and workmanship.
Price of Greenworks 20322 14.5 Amp Corded Chainsaw
Currently available at under $100, this is in line with similar models in this class and we therefore believe it is reasonably priced