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How to Use a Pole Saw-8 Essential Tips[Updated]

I was recently asked the question “how to use a pole saw“, and I aim to answer that question not only for the person who requested it but for all wondering if a pole saw is essential for their family. 

But before going through the topics, let’s know a little about what is a pole saw? 

Pole saws are a great tool for trimming branches and cutting down small trees. They are much easier to use than a chainsaw and can be operated by one person.

  • Start by extending the pole saw to its full length
  • Place your left hand on the top of the pole, and your right hand on the bottom handle
  • With your left hand, guide the saw blade up against the branch you want to cut
  • Apply pressure to the handles with your right hand to start cutting through the branch
  • Keep applying pressure until the branch is completely cut through

Choosing a pole saw wouldn’t be a wrong choice if you want to get an indispensable cutting tool for pruning and shaping a tree.  But if you confused about how to use it, please take a look at the entire process to know the steps to use this unit effortlessly.  

A Table: Different Types Of Pole Saws

Different Types Of Pole Saws
Types of Pole SawDescription
 Electric Pole Saw
  • One of the most popular tools for cutting or pruning wood is an electric pole saw that needs plug in to use.
  • It is suitable for cutting limbs up to 8-9 inches thick.
  • With this easy to use the unit, you can reach up to 6 to 15 feet high.
 Gas Pole Saw
  • Gas pole saw enables its users to perform heavy-duty tree pruning services.
  • Professional-grade, Powerful, versatile, and easy to use.
  • Though this machine is loud enough, you can reach up to 6 to 12 feet high.
 Corded   pole saw
  • It is ideal for pruning uninterrupted.
  • Easy to charge machine that works without battery.
  • No hazard to work with the corded item.
Cordless pole saw
  • Suitable for carrying anywhere for pruning needs.
  • With a lightweight battery, it can be charged for less than an hour.
  • A must-have tool for gardening.
 Manual   tree      Pruner
  •  It needs body pressure for cutting branches of the tree (up to 6 to 10 feet).
  • Ideal for small yard or garden.
  • Tiring, time-consuming, and hard to cut thicker branches.
Hydraulic Pole Saw 
  • Suitable for large trees, forests, or big tree farms.
  • Heavy-duty machine for professionals.
  • 50% faster and 15% are lighter than an electric saw.

Top 8 Step by Step Guide On Using A Pole Saw

Step 1 (Make your work area clean):

  • Firstly, make sure the area of your workplace is clean. The tree pruning expert recommends that it is safe to restrict up to 50 feet radius to avoid any accident.
  • Also, it would be better to employ someone who will check the area and stop people at the entrance at the working site.

Step 2 (Draw a solid plan on how to cut the branches):

  • You may get some branches in hard to reach area during pruning or cutting. In that case, you need to make a solid plan before cutting. Thus, you can complete the task without any hazard.

Step 3 (Start pruning or cutting the lower side branches):

  • Pruning or cutting the lower side limbs helps you to reach and cut the top branches. So, ensure that you are cutting the branch from the lower area to make a passage to prune higher branches.
  • Thus, you can get a smooth and safe cut.

Step 4 (Position yourself in the right place):  

  • Before cutting the tree limb or branches, ensure that you are standing in the right place.
  • If you are positioning yourself under the branch while cutting, you may get injured.

Note: Always, stand on the risk-free area that allows you to complete your cutting job easily and effortlessly.  

Step 5 (Positioning your pole saw):  

  • Use your both hand to hold the saw naturally.
  • Put the left hand on the body of your pole saw and then start triggering with the right hand.
  • Now positioning the saw to cut the targeted tree limbs.

Step 6 (Fix the tree pole saw Length and blade):

  • Once you found yourself in the right place and your pole position is fixed, then it is advisable to set the pole saw length and blade.
  • Now hold the saw using your both hand and move it to the branch you planned to cut and set the saw blade.

Note: You can check the manufacturers’ instructions to understand how to set the pole saw length. 

Step 7 (Start cutting):


Now you are prepared to cut the tree branch. It is advisable to start cutting at a lower speed with a professional pole saw. Trimming or pruning at a higher speed may cause an accident.

The pole saw blade can be slipped around that can make the cutting procedure harder as well. Therefore, ensure that you make a groove in the branch.

Pole saw cutting techniques: Be careful when it comes to making a jump cut with a thicker branch and make a cut below first. Thus, you can cut the thicker branches effortlessly.

Step 8 (Clean the work area):


After finishing your cutting job and starting the next one, clear the fallen branches out of the working area. Thus, you will stay safe from stumbling on the fallen limbs.

How To Choose a Pole Saw: 

Choosing the best pruning pole saw couldn’t be tiresome for you if you consider the following tips and tricks.

  • Before choosing the best pole saw, you need to check out the power and weight ratio of the tool.
  • Noise level: You might not go for a saw with a heavy sound.
  • Cutting power of the pole saw pole length, weight, etc.
  • Types of pole saw: Determine which type of pole saw is essential to deal with your project such as gas, electric, corded or cordless, etc.
  • Budget: Choose the pole saw within your budget limit, but don’t compromise the quality with price.
  • Choose a cordless pole limb saw if you want to reach 50 to 100 feet radios.
  • Gas-powered saws: Range of 32cc-34cc.

Pole Saw Cutting Techniques

Now, there are some tips to make sure that you are safe still maintaining a clean cut. First, after aligning it, make a deep cut on the end of the branch. If those are thick, then the deep grove will guide you.

Another important suggestion is never to take your eyes off the cut. When you take your eyes off something, it is more prone to cause havoc. The main concern should be safety. So, it would be best if you do not compromise with your safety measures.

Speaking of safety measures, keep everyone away from you. Wear protective glasses and helmets. Using suitable quality gloves will allow you to maintain a healthy grip. The pole will not slip off.

The last thing is to maintain and take care of the equipment. Unattended instruments often cause damage while working with them. It would be best if you had a good idea about retaining the saw blade. It is a must-have knowledge about sharp instruments.

Pole Saw Safety Tips: 

Pole Saw Safety Tips
  1. Read the manual instruction
  2. Wear the right safety gear
  • Leather boots
  • Work gloves
  • Goggles
  • Mask and
  • Hard hat
  1. Use only for pruning and cutting tree limbs.
  2. Don’t work in the dark and windy weather conditions.
  3. Check the tree condition before start pruning with a branch cutting saw.
  4. Examine the pole saw.
  5. Don’t allow any people within 50 feet
  6. Keep it upright and never cutover you.
  7. Ensure you are using both of your hands.

How to Use a Stihl Pole Saw

If you’re looking for a tool to help you reach those high branches, a Stihl pole saw is a great option. Here’s how to use one:

1. Start by assessing the branch you need to cut. Make sure it’s not too big or thick – your pole saw should be able to handle it, but cutting through a large branch will take more time and effort. Also, make sure the branch is not too close to power lines or other hazards.

2. Once you’ve determined that the branch can be safely cut, position your Stihl pole saw so that the blade is lined up with the branch.

3. Start the saw by pressing the trigger on the handlebar grip. Then, use both hands to guide the blade through the branch from top to bottom.

4. As you’re cutting, keep an eye on where the falling branches will land.

You don’t want them to fall on someone or something below!

How to Use a Gas Pole Saw

If you need to cut branches that are too thick for a regular saw and too high up for you to reach, then you need a gas pole saw. A gas pole saw is essentially a chainsaw on an extendable pole. This makes it much easier and safer to cut high branches without having to use a ladder.

Here’s how to use a gas pole saw:

1. Read the manual before using the saw. This will help you understand how the saw works and what safety precautions you need to take.

2. Put on all the appropriate safety gear, including gloves, eye protection, and ear protection.

3. Start the saw according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Make sure that the chain is properly lubricated before beginning to cut.

4. Position yourself so that you are stable and have good footing before beginning to cut. The last thing you want is to lose your balance while using the saw!

5 .Extend the pole to reach the branch you wish to cut . When cutting, be sure to keep your fingers well away from the blade . Also , be careful not to put too much pressure on the blade or else it may kick back at you . Allow the weight of the saw to do most of the work for you as you guide it through the branch .

6 If at any point you feel unstable or unsafe , stop cutting and reposition yourself . Never take risks while using a gas pole saw –it’s just not worth it !

Frequently Asked Question (FAQ

1. Can I Use a Pole Saw on a Ladder?

A pole saw is designed to remove the need for a ladder. However, you may get some brands and models out on the market that have extensions to cut hard-to-reach branches.  

Though you can use a ladder while pruning with a pole saw, but it isn’t safe. It is advisable to hire a professional if you can’t reach the branch.

2. How Thick Can a Pole Saw Cut?

According to the tree pruning experts and professionals, you shouldn’t go for cutting a branch that is thicker than 8 inches. 

It’s the job of a professional to deal with 9 inches thick hard-to-cut branches. Be careful to cut such branches, because it may cause severe accidents.

3. What is The Best Pole Saw For The Money?

# If you are looking for a pole saw to deal with heavy-duty cutting or pruning projects, then choosing Gas Pole Saw could be best. For example, Remington Maverick 25cc 2-Cycle Gas Pole Saw.

# To get a pole saw which would be well worth your money, you can check out WORX not Capable 20V Pole Saw (2-in-1 Attachme).

# In general, you can opt for Greenworks 40V Cordless Pole Saw as the best pole saw.

4. How Long Can a Pole Saw Be?

A pole saw can be as long as 10 to 20 feet. Having a 10 feet pole helps you to reach up to 15 feet. The Remington RM1035P Ranger II could be the longest pole saw out on the market.  

5. Which is Better Gas or Electric Pole Saw? 

The electric-powered pole saw is quieter enough to deal with lighter cutting or pruning jobs. But it is a bit more pricey than a gas pole saw. 

On the other hand, a gas pole saw is suitable for heavy-duty pruning jobs. But it’s louder enough and less expensive. 

6. How Big Of a Branch Can a Pole Saw Cut?

A pole saw is easy to start and manage. You push a button to make it ready to cut lighter branches up to 4 to 5 inches.   

7. Can I Use a Pole Saw Like a Chainsaw?

Yes, you can use a pole saw like a chainsaw. However, there are some important things to keep in mind when using a pole saw. First, make sure that the chain is properly tensioned.

Second, always hold the pole saw with both hands. Third, be extra careful when cutting near power lines or other dangerous objects. Finally, always wear proper safety gear, including gloves and eye protection.

8. Is a Pole Saw Hard to Use?

Assuming you are referring to a pole saw for trimming trees: No, pole saws are not hard to use. In fact, they can be quite easy to use once you get the hang of it.

Here are a few tips to help you get started:

-Before starting, make sure that the area around you is clear of any obstacles that could trip you up or get in the way.

-Check your saw blade to ensure that it is sharp and in good condition. A dull blade will make the job harder and could potentially damage the tree.

-Start by positioning the saw at a comfortable height and angle. You don’t want to be stretching too much or leaning too far over.

-When making cuts, try to keep your cuts as straight as possible. This will help avoid damaging the bark of the tree.


Whether you are trimming, pruning, and brush clearing, a pole saw plays a significant role. It seems a little bit harder to use and control this device when it comes to pruning or cutting tree branches. However, I’m not saying that it’s impossible to become a master of this tool.

Pole saws are a great tool for trimming branches and cutting down small trees. They are easy to use and very versatile. Here are some tips on how to use a pole saw:

1. Always read the manufacturer’s instructions before using the pole saw.

2. Be sure to wear protective clothing, including gloves, when using the pole saw.

3. Extend the pole saw to its full length and then lock it in place before starting to cut.

4. Start by cutting smaller branches first and then work your way up to larger ones.

5. Use a back-and-forth motion when cutting with the pole saw.

But by following the above-mentioned steps on how to use a pole saw, you can complete your cutting job easily and effortlessly. Finally, if you find it too difficult, you can take the help of a professional tree cutting company.

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Hi! I'm James D. Miller, a professional pro woodworker, have 10 years of experience as a woodworker and 12 years of expertise as a saw user. I've revealed this power saw review site for you guys who have a genuine interest in power tools. Thanks for showing your affinity for the review blog. Find me on Twitter here. Happy reading.

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