If you’re familiar with how to safely use a chainsaw—and you happen to have a tree on your property that needs to be cut down—then you’re in luck, because we have the guide you need for doing just that! Whether you need a tree down for aesthetic purposes, to protect other trees, or because of a lightning strike, the following steps have got you covered.
Tools You Need
- Eye and hearing protection
- Felling wedges
- Hard hat
- Work gloves
- Steel-toed boots
- Chainsaw protective gear kit
- Bar and chain oil
Cutting a Tree Down
Before you begin, make sure you completely understand how to operate a chainsaw and follow every safety recommendation. Also, if you’re planning to cut down trees near other structures, trees leaning opposite your planned fell, rotting trees, larger trees, or anything else you’re uncomfortable handling, let a professional tackle this challenge.
- Step 1: Take a good, slow look of the area to make sure no power lines, structures, or pets are close to a radius equal to that of the tree’s height. Also, keep people a good distance away—double the tree’s height at least.
- Step 2: Choose the direction the tree should fall, preferably the direction it leans naturally, and strategize a well-defined escape path that is opposite the fall’s direction at a 45-degree angle. Clean out the area surrounding the tree while making sure there aren’t any loose branches above.
- Step 3: Now, with the tree to your left side and your left shoulder touching the tree, create a vertical, 70-degree cut on the tree side that’s facing where you want the tree fall. If the chainsaw has a felling sight on its housing, let it act like a guide. Pointing your sight in the direction you want your tree to fall can help you make cuts at the proper locations. Cut until you reach about a one-fourth of the tree’s diameter.
- Step 4: Turn your chainsaw on its side for your next cut and then cut horizontally until you meet the first cut, which should create a notch.
- Step 5: For your felling cut, move over to the tree’s opposite side, making a flat cut that is somewhat above your previous horizontal cut. Saw until there’s plenty of room for inserting the wedge into the cut, which keeps the chainsaw from binding. Push in the wedge and then finish your cut, making sure you don’t touch your wedge with your saw blade. Remember, do not cut all the way through—leave roughly a 10 percent width as a type of hinge. Once the tree starts falling, immediately move down the escape path.
- Step 6: Should the tree become lodged on another tree while falling, call in a professional.
While this is certainly not the end of the process—there is still the matter of the tree lying there that you cannot simply leave—this is what it takes to handle what is admittedly the most dangerous part of cutting down a tree. Hopefully, these steps communicated the level of safety precautions required to get the job done and whether you have the experience necessary to do it safely.
Feel free to check out the Hipp’s Help store for any home improvement needs or supplies for projects. We offer FREE ship to store for all of Mountain View customers. And we also offer reasonable shipping rates for the rest of our customers throughout the country.
Copyright: jarenwicklund / 123RF Stock Photo