The GreenWorks 20362 24V Cordless Chainsaw is part of the company’s 24-volt family of tools which includes almost everything from hedge trimmers to hand vacuums.
Perfect for cutting small branches and limbs, this saw has some great features including tool-less chain tensioning and an automatic oiling system. So, if you are looking for an alternative to a small gas powered saw or just want to add to your GreenWorks power tool collection, the 20362 could be just the product for you.
In this review I’ll cover the model in detail to give you a good feel for the product and help you decide if it is the right chainsaw for you.
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Performance and Handling
The 20362 is a battery operated, cordless saw designed for light cutting duties. It’s both lightweight and easy to operate and this, together with the fact that you do not need to be near a power outlet, makes it an ideal alternative to a gas powered machine.
Unlike gas chainsaws, starting this saw couldn’t be simpler. You just need to attach the battery, ensure the reservoir is filled with chain oil and then switch it on using the switch lock and switch trigger. Pressing the lock button will activate the trigger and once the trigger is pressed the machine will start instantaneously.
Once the trigger is released, the lock switch will reset and the chain will coast to a stop. You need therefore to be careful and ensure that the chain has stopped completely before you relax your control of the saw.
With its 10 inch bar and chain, the 20362 operates best when cutting limbs up to 8 inches in diameter, although the manufacturer advises that it can be used to cut up to 14 inches with a back cut. Most users agree, however, that it copes best with smaller limbs and will struggle with anything over 8 inches. That said, it's perfect for jobs such as trail clearing, where it is useful to have a lightweight saw and where you will need to make lots of small cuts. The fact that it doesn’t get hot like a gas saw also means that you don’t need to wait for it to cool before you put it in a backpack or store it away.
In terms of performance, there were very few negative comments. The only real issue is that because the chain speed is quite slow, cutting very small diameter branches (less than an inch) can be problematic as the blade can bounce off the limb.
Certainly, with lower speed saws the cutting technique needs to be slightly different in that you have to get into the cut carefully and then allow the chain to do the work. Unlike a powerful gas saw you won’t be able to press through the wood. The fact that the blade can bounce off small limbs might also make under cutting more difficult. These are minor issues which shouldn’t be too problematic for the user.
The trigger on this saw is single speed and you will find that the cut is slightly rougher than you would find with a gas saw, which may deter some people using it for pruning.
The 20362 is equipped with a 10 inch bar and chain, making it perfect for cutting small branches and limbs, as well as getting into those tight spaces larger saws aren’t able to reach.
The guide bar is an Oregon 100SDEA041 reduced kickback bar. It has a sprocket nose and narrow kerf, which not only helps reduce kickback but also helps improve cutting performance. The tip of the bar will need to be lubricated on a regular basis. This is done by using a syringe to inject grease into the lubricating hole.
Oregon also provides the chain for the 20362. It is the 91PJ040X which has a pitch of 3/8”, gauge of 0.05” and 40 drive links. This has met the low kickback requirements of ANSI B.175.1 and is quite a popular chain so getting replacements should never be a problem.
The chain will need to be kept properly sharpened and if you are happy doing this yourself you will need a 5/32” (4 mm) round file and holder. If you don’t sharpen the chain correctly it can result in an increased risk of kickback so, if having read the instructions, you don’t feel confident about doing this yourself then either get it done professionally or replace the chain itself.
As well as keeping it sharp, you will also need to ensure that the chain is kept correctly tensioned. This is easy thanks to the tool-less tensioning system. All that you need to do is remove the battery, loosen the cover lock bolt and then turn the tensioning bolt clockwise to tension the chain. This is fast and convenient and allows you to get on with the job without getting out your tool kit. Full instructions regarding how tight you should keep the chain in hot and cold conditions are in the operator’s manual. However, you should check the tension of your chain on a regular basis, especially in the early days as new chains have a tendency to stretch more.
Design and Construction
The pictures below show some of the design features incorporated into this chainsaw.
It has a traditional rear handle design and the handle has a rubberized grip for better handling. The front wrap handle is useful in that it allows easy cutting at different angles, providing excellent flexibility. Just in front of the handle is a large front guard to prevent hand contact with the chain should the operator accidentally lose grip.
On the right side of the saw are the tensioning and cover lock knobs used to keep the chain taut. On the front of the powerhead unit there is also a set of bumper spikes which help to pivot the saw on the wood providing stability when cutting.
As shown above the trigger and lockout switches are in close proximity on the rear handle. The oil cap has a tether to help keep it attached to the saw when being filled with oil and there is a reservoir window which helps the user keep a close eye on oil levels.
The saw itself is constructed mainly from plastic. Whilst not therefore as robust as an aluminum saw, it does help to keep the weight down and you won’t have any worries about rust.
24V 2AH Battery
The 20362 comes with a 24 volt 2 amp hour Lithium-Ion battery and charger. The battery is slotted into housing on top of the powerhead unit which provides this machine with good balance.
Firstly, in terms of the battery, the higher the voltage the more current can be ‘pushed’. This usually means a greater capacity for work which in effect means more power. A lot of the larger battery powered saws are equipped with 40 volt batteries and therefore have more power than this 24 volt GreenWorks. You shouldn’t be overly concerned by this. The 20362 is fundamentally a light duty saw and there is more than enough power to handle the tasks for which it was designed. In many ways it is similar to the Black and Decker LCS1020, which also has 10 inch cutting equipment but operates effectively with a 20 volt battery.
The battery has a 2 amp hour rating. In simple terms this tells us how much stamina the battery has – this particular battery can deliver a continuous supply of current of 2 amps to a load for 1 hour, or 1 amp for 2 hours or 4 amps for 30 minutes. (You can read more about this in our article about batteries). The greater the amp hour rating, the more stamina and lasting power the battery has and 2 amp hours is the lowest you are likely to find in a chainsaw. Again, you shouldn’t be duly concerned by this and there is the advantage that lower amp batteries take less time to charge.
In practice you will be able to make around 35 cuts of 4 x 4 wood on a single battery charge. Users have indicated that they tend to get around 30 – 45 minutes of cutting time per charge. There is no loss of power as the charge gets lower although the downside is that like most Lithium-Ion batteries when they stop it is immediate and you will need to recharge or replace.
The battery can be used in any of the GreenWorks 24 volt range of power tools. There are 4 Amp hour batteries available in this range, however the manufacturer doesn’t recommend the use of these with this saw.
When it comes to charging, it only takes around 45 minutes to fully recharge the battery which means that you can take a short break during large jobs and know that the saw will be ready to use again in no time.
Chain Oil System
Oil is applied to the cutting equipment by the automatic oiling system which means you don’t need to do this manually. It is a fixed flow system which means that you can’t adjust the oil flow rate should you wish to do so. This is not likely to be an issue for light duty cutting.
You will need to ensure the reservoir has sufficient oil in it at all times. The oil reservoir cap is positioned at a slight angle so to avoid spillage it may be worth investing in a small funnel. The cap has a small tether so this shouldn’t go astray whilst you are filling up. Keeping an eye on the level of your oil is easy thanks to the translucent reservoir window which clearly indicates when you have reached the minimum level. The reservoir itself has a capacity of 1.8 oz. (50 ml) which isn’t especially large so you should always keep a supply of oil handy.
In terms of the type of oil to be used, GreenWorks recommend use of their own brand, although a number of users indicated that this wasn’t easy to find. Failing this, you should use a good quality bar and chain oil and if you are pruning this should be vegetable based.
One issue raised by a number of owners was that the saw leaks badly during storage. To prevent seepage, the manufacturer recommends that the oil tank is emptied after use and the saw run for a minute to get rid of any residue. This is a bit inconvenient and if you do happen to leave a small amount of oil in the reservoir you should ensure that it is stored on a protective pad or some cardboard for example.
Finally, as with most chainsaw purchases, chain oil is NOT supplied.
The 20362 has the following safety features built in to protect the machine and operator:
- Front and rear hand guards to protect the hands from debris and issues with the chain.
- Reduced kickback bar and low kickback chain which meets the American National Safety Institute’s standards in this regard.
- Battery pack has an internal circuit breaker which will switch off the machine if it overheats.
- Lockout button to prevent accidental starting of the chainsaw.
- Bumper spikes to provide stability and safer cutting.
With the battery attached this saw weighs 10.8lbs. This is around the mid-range in terms of light and medium duty home owner saws so if you are used to operating power tools the 20362 shouldn’t cause you any problems.
The 20362 comes with an owner’s manual, a protective bar scabbard and a hexagon ring spanner for use when attaching the guide bar.
- Excellent for light cutting work
- Quick recharging
- Quiet and easy to handle
- Can use batteries in all GreenWorks G24 range
- Tool-less chain tensioning
- Automatic oiler
- Low maintenance
- Leaks oil when in storage
- Not the most powerful battery
There are around a hundred on-line reviews for this chainsaw and overall they are pretty positive. Around 85% of buyers rated the saw as either good or excellent. Buyers are particularly happy with how easy it is to handle and how well it tackles light cutting tasks.
The main criticism of this saw is that it tends to leak oil during storage but to some degree that is true of many saws.
You should buy this saw if:
- You want an alternative to gas for light cutting duties.
- You have other tools in the GreenWorks 24V range.
- You want a saw which is easy to start and handle.
- You don’t have access to a power outlet.
You should not buy this saw if:
- You need saw for medium and heavy cutting tasks.
- You need a saw capable of doing several hours cutting at a time.
GreenWorks 20362 24V Price
With the battery and charger included, this saw currently costs just over a $100. Even though this is slightly more expensive than the comparable Black and Decker, we still believe this represents excellent value.