What You Should Know About The Poulan Pro Chainsaw

Not long ago, I purchased a small home on a one-acre lot covered in old, dying trees that needed to be cleared away. Worse, I did not have the time or energy to fight with the hard-to-start, heavy monster chainsaw I’ve had for years.

I found the Poulan Pro line of chainsaws by accident. And I have to say, I’m glad I did.

In this Poulan Pro chainsaw review, I will dive into some of the key features of each of the chainsaws in the series to help you choose the chainsaw that is perfect for you.

The Top Choice

In a side-by-side comparison, the Poulan Pro P5020 20-Inch 50cc 2-Cycle Gas Chainsaw earns the top choice award. This saw is built to last, carries the best Poulan Pro features, and has proven to tackle hard work without overworking the user.

Last update on 2019-07-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Buying Guide

Poulan Pro chainsaws are packed with features that stand up to the much more expensive competition.

  • All Poulan Pro chainsaws have OxyPower patented technology that provides unbelievable power, giving you a 20% decrease in fuel consumption and up to 70% fewer emissions than other chainsaws.
  • Their gas-powered chainsaws are all equipped with a spring-assist pull cord to make starting easy and simple.
  • The SuperClean filtering system ensures a longer air filter life and less maintenance.
  • An automatic oiler keeps the bar and chain well lubricated for increased power while reducing wear and friction.
  • Each chainsaw is super lightweight, with the largest model weighing only 21 pounds! You can work longer without working harder.
  • Many come with a carrying case for convenient portability.
  • Familiar 2-cycle gasoline patented DuraLife engines are chromium plated for added durability.
  • The saws are ergonomically designed with a handy, quick-adjust screw on each Poulan Pro brand chainsaw bar.

 

If you want some tips on the best operation procedures, check out this video from the makers of Poulan Pro

 

Commonly Asked Questions

Here are a few common questions that you may have when deciding which model of chainsaw will fit your needs.

 

Which Bar Length Do I Need?

The bar length of a Poulan Pro chainsaw ranges from 16 to 20 inches. In general, smaller bars are better for trimming limbs and removing small trees and stumps, while a larger bar will better tackle larger diameter limbs, stumps, and trees.

One important thing to keep in mind is that your chainsaw bar should be longer than the diameter of what you;re attempting to saw through. Keeping the end of the chainsaw from contacting the tree or another surface will help to prevent kickback.

 

Gas Or Electric?

While some may claim that choosing between a gas or electric chainsaw is just a matter of preference, there are a few distinct differences in addition to the fuel source.

The Poulan Pro gas-powered chainsaws all have a 2-stroke engine. This requires a precise 401 ratio mix of gasoline and 2-stroke engine oil. That is equivalent to 3.2 ounces of oil to every gallon of gasoline.

Poulan Pro manufacturers suggest using Poulan Pro’s 2-stroke engine oil which can be easily purchased in 3.2-ounce bottles providing a fool-proof advantage to the perfect mix ratio.

Alternatively, Poulan Pro’s battery-operated chainsaws are fueled by a rechargeable battery. This means there is no fuel mixing, just start it and go… assuming your battery is charged. Battery-operated chainsaws are not as powerful as gas-powered models, so they should be used for smaller cutting needs, such as small limbs, trees, and shrubs.

Maintaining Your Chainsaw

When it comes to maintenance, it is important to maintain proper lubrication, correct chain tension, a clean air filter, and to keep your chainsaw clean.

 

Lubrication

Poulan Pro Premium Bar and Chain oil provides the perfect viscosity to improve the operation and life of the chainsaw chain. There is an automatic oil system built into all the Poulan Pro chainsaws that ensures the fuel tank will run out before the chain oil, preventing the chainsaw from running out of oil and getting overheated.

Pro Tip: Before each use, make sure to top off the chain oil and fuel. This will allow the automatic oil system to work efficiently every time. When you must stop and refuel, take the time to refill the chain oil as well.

 

Sharpen Your Chain

It is important to keep your chain sharp. A dull chain can be dangerous and cause the chainsaw to kickback unexpectedly. You can either purchase a chain sharpener or have a specialty shop sharpen your chain for a small fee.

Pro Tip: Buy an extra chain when you purchase your chainsaw. By doing this, you can always have a sharpened chain ready as a backup for those bigger jobs. Also, keep in mind, the bar length will determine the chain length you will need.

 

Cleaning

Keep the chainsaw clean by wiping any excess lubricating oil or fuel that may have been spilled while filling. This will help to prevent damage to the chainsaw or risk of injury associated with flammable liquids.

 

Chain Tension

Check the tension of the chain before each use and periodically while in use. Do this by loosening the bar nuts on the clutch cover and turning the quick adjust clockwise while pulling the tip of the bar upwards; this will ensure the chain is tight.

To check the tension, attempt to pull the chain away from the top edge of the bar. There should be no visible space between the chain and bar while still allowing free movement of the chain. Retighten the bar nuts on the side of the clutch cover.

Pro Tip: Never adjust a chain while your chainsaw is running or hot!

 

Air Filter

Regular maintenance of the air filter will help to ensure that the chainsaw is running at top performance. Excess dirt and debris in an air filter can cause carburetor trouble, excess engine wear, and negate the fuel efficiency of the chainsaw engine.

Clean the filter by brushing or shaking it. If the filter needs a deeper clean, it can be cleaned with water and mild soap but should be rinsed thoroughly and allowed to dry before returning the filter to the chainsaw.

For a detailed description of the right way to use and care for your chainsaw, check out this video directly from the manufacturer.

 

The Top 5 Poulan Pro Chainsaws

Let’s break down each Poulan Pro chainsaw model, give you the specs, the pros and cons, and what others are saying about each chainsaw.

1. Poulan Pro P5020 20-Inch 50cc 2-Cycle Gas Chainsaw

One of the biggest chainsaws on our list, this saw puts 50ccs of pure power in the palm of your hand. The 20-inch blade is strong enough to tackle the toughest jobs, while the ergonomic design and effortless pull start (EPS) mean less stress on the user.

 

Key Features

  • OxyPower engine technology
  • 50cc 2-cycle DuraLife engine
  • Anti-vibration system
  • EPS, a spring-assisted pull cord
  • Purge bulb
  • Combined choke/stop

 

What other users are saying

P5020 users say that it is easy to handle, even for a non-pro, that it idles great and has lots of power. Even at around 15 pounds, this chainsaw is light enough for everyday use. One consumer referred to the P5020 as “a beast” and compared the cutting ability to a hot knife cutting butter.

 

Pros

  • 20-inch low kickback bar
  • Side-mounted for easy-access to tensioning
  • In-handle multi-tool storage
  • Tool-free air filter and spark plug access
  • 2-year limited warranty

 

Cons

  • Plastic handle
  • A tendency to flood with suggested priming

 

Conclusion

If you are looking for a larger chainsaw that can take down larger limbs and trees, then this is the right saw. Specifically designed to carry the workload without extra stress, this saw will last.

 

Overall Rating 3.7/5

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

2. Poulan Pro PP4218AVX 18-Inch 42cc 2-Cycle Gas-Powered Anti-Vibration Chainsaw With Case

The PP4218AVX provides the perfect balance of power and flexibility. The 18-inch chain is large enough to tackle most jobs, while the anti-vibration technology reduces fatigue for longer use and improved comfort.

 

Key Features

  • 18-inch bar
  • 42cc 2-cycle DuraLife gas engine
  • Anti-vibration system
  • Inertia-activated chain brake that stops the chain during kickback
  • Automatically oiling system
  • EPS
  • Onboard chain adjustment

 

What other users are saying

This chainsaw has garnered a loyal following with many owners tossing aside other brands they had used for years in favor of this economical and powerful chainsaw. One consumer swears by their regular maintenance and perfect gas/oil ratio to ensure a reliable start each time.

Many consumers refer to the EPS, and while they admit it takes a little getting used to, they are very pleased with this feature. Still others praise the kickback safety features and the anti-vibration system that reduces fatigue.

 

Pros

  • Onboard chain adjustment
  • Powerful 42cc engine
  • Comes fully assembled
  • Includes a 1-year limited warranty

 

Cons

  • Chains dull fast
  • Gas cap may swell over time

 

Conclusion

The Poulan Pro PP4218AVX is a great all-around chainsaw. The 42cc engine is powerful enough for big jobs, while the anti-vibration technology helps even chainsaw novices with smaller jobs.

 

Overall Rating 3.7/5

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

3. Poulan Pro PR4016 16-Inch 40cc 2-Cycle Gas Chainsaw

This chainsaw is ideal for light to medium work, such as cutting firewood or cleaning up storm debris.

 

Key Features

  • Compact 16-inch bar
  • 42cc 2-cycle DuraLife gas engine
  • Anti-vibration system
  • Automatically oiling system
  • EPS
  • Integrated onboard tool storage ‘scrench’ (a specialized wrench for chainsaws)

 

What other users are saying

One chainsaw owner declared victory over a 65-foot tree they were able to conquer shortly after purchasing their PR4016. One individual bought the chainsaw for her husband and was happy to share how pleased he was with the gift, especially after they experienced a bad storm.

Other consumers praise how lightweight and portable this chainsaw is compared to similar models and brands on the market. It is hard to find one so lightweight without going electric. And everyone is very happy with the economical price.

 

Pros

  • Lightweight and affordable
  • Onboard scrench
  • Surprisingly powerful for a 40cc engine

 

Cons

  • Too small for bigger jobs
  • Bar heats up quickly
  • Not for green logs

 

Conclusion

If you are looking for a lightweight chainsaw to use in an emergency, then this smaller bar chainsaw is what you need. Not big or powerful enough for regular use, but perfect for storm cleanup, trimming, and light yard maintenance

 

Overall Rating 3.6/5

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

4. Poulan Pro PR4218 18-Inch 42cc 2-Cycle Gas Chainsaw, Case Included

This chainsaw packs the power of a larger engine into a compact and useful 18-inch chainsaw. The added case means you can safely transport this chainsaw without having to worry about damaging the saw or anything around it.

The included extra chain means you can cut more wood before you need to take time to sharpen a chain.

 

Key Features

  • 18-inch bar
  • Included case and extra chain
  • 42cc 2-cycle DuraLife gas engine
  • Anti-vibration system
  • Automatically oiling system
  • EPS
  • Integrated onboard tool storage for scrench

 

What other users are saying

PR4218 users share stories of having to use their chainsaws repeatedly, some in needed situations and others just because they enjoy cutting with them. One consumer marveled at the power of this chainsaw compared to other, much pricier options that are available in their local retail stores and specialty shops.

The low vibration is a favorite of many users, who agree that it allows them to use the chainsaw for longer periods of time without hurting their hands and arms. Consumers who suffer with mobility issues and chronic pain claim they have had no issues using this saw.

 

Pros

  • 18-inch bar, long enough for most regular jobs
  • 42cc engine runs smooth
  • Case and extra chain included

 

Cons

  • Pull string may break (especially if not used to spring assist)
  • Carburetor bogs down after repeated use

 

Conclusion

This saw brings together the power of a larger 42cc engine with the portability and flexibility of a smaller saw. This saw provides the power associated with larger saws in a lightweight and portable 18-inch model. Plus, the included case and extra chain are a huge bonus.

 

Overall Rating 3.4/5

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

5. Poulan Pro PP5020AV 20-Inch 50cc 2-Stroke Gas Powered Chain Saw With Carrying Case

This chainsaw is just slightly different than the other 20-inch chainsaw on our list. This saw has a narrower bar for slicing through harder wood and larger limbs with ease. Additionally, this package includes a carrying case, making portability a plus.

 

Key Features

  • Narrow 20-inch bar
  • EPS
  • Reduced vibration handle
  • Locking scrench holder

 

What other users are saying

This chainsaw is the perfect saw for the general homeowner. A great buy and more than enough power for most tasks. Consumers recommend abiding by the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure proper safety an optimal performance.

One consumer suggests that the only reason for any negative reviews for this chainsaw is not following instructions and not allowing the chainsaw to warm up after starting and before use.

 

Pros

  • Reduced vibration handle dramatically reduces fatigue and stands up over time
  • Easily transported with the included case
  • Narrow bar
  • EPS

 

Cons

  • Power outworks the chain
  • The bar may heat up quickly

 

Conclusion

This chainsaw is one of the larger on the list. It is built with the larger 50cc DuraLife engine, so it will work hard. Even so, the handle is designed to reduce vibration and user fatigue.

But the reason it is number five on the list is because this chainsaw has a few issues.

The narrower bar, while convenient, in some cases tends to heat up quicker than other models. Additionally, the increased power may cause the chain to dull quickly.

 

Overall Rating 3.3/5

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Final Thoughts

All these Poulan Pro chainsaws will get the job done if you get the right one.

 

Best Overall

The best overall chainsaw is the Poulan Pro P5020 20-Inch 50cc 2-Cycle Gas Chainsaw. This saw provides durability and functionality, while the 50cc DuraLife 2-Cycle engine will power through the toughest jobs.

A longer and broader bar means less work to get the job done. Additionally, this chainsaw stands up against some of the most well-known brands of chainsaws, and some life-long users of popular brands are making the switch.

 

Best Value

If you are looking for the best value in these top chainsaws, then that must be the Poulan Pro PR4218 18-Inch 42cc 2-Cycle Gas Chainsaw that comes with a case.

Not only does this chainsaw come in at a great price, but when you add in the bonus case and additional chain, pick up some chain oil and 2-cycle oil and you are ready to work right out of the box. Big enough to handle most homeowners’ needs, the only reason this chainsaw did not make the top pick is the size of the engine and length of the bar.

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Bob Campbell

Bob Campbell

By day Robert "Bob" Campbell is a residential carpenter but by night (and on the weekends) he is a non-stop DIY tinkerer. As the lead editor of inspiredesignandcreate.com Bob is able to share his passion for DIY projects and buying all the latest gear with the online world.