Why does my saw chain stretch?

Do you own a chainsaw?

If so, then you know that the chain on your saw is what does all of the cutting. And if that chain starts to stretch, it can cause some big problems. In this article, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about why your saw chain stretches and how to fix it.

You don’t want your chainsaw chain to start stretching – it can cause some serious damage. But with the information in this article, you’ll be able to keep your chainsaw in good condition and cut through whatever wood you need!

Why does my saw chain stretch:

Here are some reasons why your saw chain might be stretching:

1. The chain is too tight or too loose on the bar

If the chain is too tight, it will cause unnecessary wear and tear on the saw. If it’s too loose, the saw may kickback, which could be dangerous.

2. The chain is dirty or has built-up residue on it

A dirty or gummed-up chain will stretch more easily than a clean one. Be sure to keep your chain clean and lubricated for best results.

3. The guide bar is not the correct size for the chain

Using a guide bar that is too small can cause the chain to stretch. Be sure you are using the correct size guide bar for your saw.

4. You are not using the right type of chain lubricant

Some lubricants are not designed for use with saw chains. Be sure to read the labels and choose a lubricant that is compatible with your saw chain.

5. The saw is being used for applications it was not designed for

Some chains are not meant to be used for certain applications. For example, a chain designed for construction might not be ideal for use in forestry. Make sure you are using the correct chain for the task at hand.

6. The saw is not being properly maintained

Regular cleaning and lubrication are essential for keeping a saw chain in good condition. Neglecting these maintenance tasks can lead to stretching.

7. The saw is being used improperly

Using a saw incorrectly can put unnecessary stress on the chain, causing it to stretch. Be sure to follow the proper safety procedures and operating instructions for your saw.

8. There is a manufacturing defect

In some rare cases, a manufacturing defect can cause a chain to stretch. If you suspect this is the case, contact the manufacturer for assistance.

If your saw chain is stretching, it’s important to determine the cause so you can take steps to fix it. By addressing the problem, you can keep your saw chain in good condition and avoid unnecessary wear and tear.

How to fix saw chain stretch issue:

Saw chains stretch for a variety of reasons, but most commonly because they are not properly tensioned, have tight spots, or are not lubricated properly. If your saw chain is stretching, there are a few things you can do to correct the problem:

1) Make sure the chain is properly tensioned by using a tension gauge or ruler.

2) Inspect the chain for tight spots and make corrections by filing down any sharp edges on the chain that may be causing it to bind up.

3) Lubricate the chain with bar and chain oil using a lube pump or a drip oiler.

4) Check the alignment of the guide bar and chain by sighting down the length of the guide bar. If the guide bar is crooked, it can cause the chain to stretch.

5) If all of these measures fail to correct the problem, then you may need to replace the saw chain.

Hopefully, following these steps will help you to fix your saw chain stretch issue. Thanks for reading!

How to prevent saw chain from stretching:

Here are some steps  you can take to prevent your saw chain from stretching:

Make sure the chain is properly tensioned.

If it’s too loose, it will stretch more easily.

Keep the chain sharpened.

A dull chain will cause the saw to work harder, which leads to more wear and tear on the chain.

Don’t overload the saw.

Trying to cut through too much wood at once can put a lot of stress on the chain, leading to stretching and breakage.

Clean the chain regularly.

Sawdust and dirt can build up on the chain and cause it to wear out more quickly.

Following these tips should help keep your saw chain in good condition and prevent it from stretching unnecessarily.


What are the consequences of having a loose or improperly tensioned chainsaw chain?

If your chainsaw chain is loose, it can cause the saw to kick back at you, which can be extremely dangerous. Additionally, a loose chain can cause the blade to come off of the saw entirely, which can also be very dangerous.

What are the consequences of having a stretched saw chain? 

If your saw chain is stretched, it will cause the blade to bind in the cut, which can be very dangerous. Additionally, a stretched chain can cause the saw to kick back at you, which can also be extremely dangerous.

How do I know if my chainsaw chain is too tight or too loose?

If your chainsaw chain is too tight, it will be difficult to pull the saw around. If your chainsaw chain is too loose, the chain will sag and move around on the bar.

How do I properly tension my chainsaw chain?

To properly tension your chainsaw chain, you will need to loosen the adjustment screw on the side of the chainsaw bar. Once the adjustment screw is loose, you can use a tension gauge to measure the correct amount of tension for your chain. You will then need to tighten the adjustment screw to hold the chain in place.


We showed you how a saw chain stretches, what are the possible causes of it, and how to prevent it. We hope that this information will help you maintain your chainsaw in top condition and keep them from stretching.

Have you ever experienced chain stretching? What did you do to fix it? Let us know in the comments below!