As mentioned on the homepage, Husqvarna along with Stihl are easily the two biggest names in the chainsaw industry. Which one happens to be the best is hotly debated. But both sides of the debate generally accept that they both make quality tools.
I recently tried the 240, one of the very few Husqvarna chainsaws with a reasonable price tag. At the time of writing, it’s approximately $180. Is there a reason for reasonable price? Well that’s what I was wondering and unfortunately, the answer is a unanimous yes.
Having owned multiple Husqvarna chainsaws in the past, my first impression was simply that there was a whole lot of plastic which is rarely a good sign. Aside from that, set up was pretty straightforward and the instructions were more than detailed enough even for the first time chainsaw user. Sadly, then I started using it.
I’m no stranger to gas powered chainsaws and yet it still took three times to get it started. On a brand new chainsaw, this isn’t a good sign.
After a few adjustments, I managed to make things a little bit easier but I’d still estimate that it fails to start about once every four times. Personally, I don’t have the patience for this.
Once it does get going, things improve dramatically (for a while anyway).
Inside you’ll find a 2 HP, 38CC engine. And while those specs are far from groundbreaking, they prove sufficient for anything that you’re likely to find in your backyard (less than 14 inches thick).
Ease of Use
Here’s where I think that the 240 really fails. First off, the chain adjustment system is a joke. Husqvarna didn’t promise toolless adjustment and I wasn’t expecting it. But at the same time, the provided tool is about as finicky as it gets.
Then there’s the gear for pumping oil on the chain. It works but it’s of such low quality that I’m afraid to touch it. After doing a little bit of research, I found multiple reports of it breaking. $180 is cheap for a Husqvarna but if these are the cuts that they’ve made, it remains overpriced.
Then there’s the vibration. Hold any chainsaw long enough and you will start to get an arm ache. But I found that I reached that point a lot faster with the 240. It isn’t noticeable at first but the result is a chainsaw that’s completely unsuitable for multi hour cutting sessions.
On the plus side, I will say that like every Husqvarna chainsaw that I’ve used, it’s relatively light given it’s power, evenly weighted and easy to hold aside from the aforementioned vibration.
Even the best companies in the world occasionally produce lemons but according to customer reviews on Amazon, my problems were far from a one off quality control problem. Only 48 customers have rated the 420 but a whopping 36% gave it 1 star out of 5. Most of which complained about it either not starting or not lasting once it does. Either one is obviously a deal breaker, the second of which, a potential safety hazard too.
Needless to say, I won’t be recommending the 240. Aside from the name on the side of the plastic shell, it shares none of the hallmarks that have made the company great. It also goes to show how wrong you can end up being when buying a power tool based on brand name alone.