There are several different types of saws available for homeowners to use on their property. One of the more overlooked is the pole saw. This is a device that is not thought of until you need to prune or remove branches from elevations higher than you can reach.
What is a Pole Saw?
A pole saw, as the name implies, is a saw blade or saw device attached to the end of a long pole. The primary function of a pole saw is to reach branches and tops of hedges that would normally be out of reach. The pole saw allows a person to reach targets at higher elevations without having to use a ladder or other device.
There are three types; manual pole saw, gas, and electric pole saw.
The manual version of the saw is nothing but a pruning saw (hand saw) attached to a pole.
The electric pole saw has a power saw that is very similar to a chain saw at the end of the pole. These are usually battery powered and have telescoping poles with adjustable length. Corded versions are also available although the electric cord is a limitation when you are working far from the power socket.
The gas pole saw is an excellent option if you are a professional since they can cut a lot without worrying about recharging. The down side is the loud noise and maintenance of gas-powered engine.
Pole Saw Uses
The pole saw has a number of uses which include but are not limited to the following.
- Cutting Tree Branches
- Pruning Trees
- Trim Hedges and Foliage
- Clearing after Disaster
- Cutting wood that are out of your reach
Cutting and Pruning
Most people use a pole saw to prune or cut tree branches from elevations higher than they can reach with a normal saw. The pole saw can be placed against the tree branch and using leverage can be pulled downward. Whether the tree branch is damaged or part of a normal pruning procedure, the pole saw is the idea tool for the job.
How to Cut Tree Limbs That Are Too High to Reach?
Using an electric pole saw is the best way to cut tree limbs that are very high. While you can use a ladder or rent a bucket lift and use a chainsaw to cut tree branches, the pole saw is safer and cost-effective option.
Other methods of cutting high tree branches include the use of a pole pruner, pruning saw with a rope, a wire saw, etc. You could also climb the tree with the help of a fall-arrest harness and use a chainsaw or reciprocating saw to cut the tree branches and twigs.
In addition, a pole saw can be used to trim hedges and foliage even if it is not the best tool for the job. A hedge trimmer is generally better. But if the foliage is out of reach for a hedge trimmer, an electric pole saw can be used. Or if you do not have a trimmer, then a pole saw acts as a good substitute. Just be careful not to clog the saw with debris and clean frequently to keep it running properly.
Clearing Disaster and Accident Zones
Pole saws are excellent tools to help clear away debris after a disaster has struck. A tornado, hurricane, or strong winds can leave behind broken or damaged materials such as tree branches, overhangs on homes or structures, and other debris that present a danger to the public. Pole saws are often used to cut off debris from higher elevations which cannot normally be reached.
Out of Reach Areas
Finally, this is an excellent tool when you want to cut wood or trees that are too dangerous or hard to reach. For example, you may want to cut a tree that fell on the other side of a fence. Or you may want to trim the bushes growing in areas that are not easily accessible.
Can a Pole Saw Be Used to Cut Down a Tree?
Yes, you can use a pole saw to cut down a tree, but it is not the most efficient type of saw to do the job. A traditional chainsaw is a far better tool to cut down a tree. This is because chainsaws come in a variety of sizes that allow you to cut through several inches of wood with ease.
A pole saw is normally made to cut through branches that are only a few inches thick. This is because if the branch was really thick, it would not need pruning or removal unless it was heavily damaged. And in the case of damage, then the thickness would most likely be reduced.
You can use a pole saw to cut down a small tree or sapling. However, it is more likely that you would use a pole saw to cut away the smaller branches before bringing a larger tree down with a chainsaw or other type of sawing device.
How to Use a Pole Saw?
A pole saw is a simple power tool. Once you have attached your pole and loaded the battery, you pull the trigger on the handle end of the pole and the cutting chain will start circulating. However, there are few important considerations to make. Here are the steps to follow.
Step-1: Prepare the Area
You want to prepare the area so that you can easily move around the make the cut.
Step-2: Decide the Cut Position
Determine where you want to cut by considering the direction of the falling branches. You may also want to consider the retreat as large branches may bounce and move towards you.
Step-3: Wear Safety Protection Equipment
Because the saw itself is at the end of a pole which may be from three to six feet or more away, the traditional safety gear is somewhat different compared to a chainsaw. Since your hands are nowhere near the chain, you can go without having to use gloves although they are recommended for picking up loose debris.
And while eye protection is less of a concern, you should still wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from the small, falling debris and dust generated by the saw. It is recommended that you wear a helmet or hard hat that protects you head from falling branches and larger debris.
Step-4: Cut the Small Branches
Now you are ready to use the pole saw. Make sure it is properly lubricated and turn it on when the chain is just over the branch. Use the weight to pull down on the saw as it cuts through the branch. You can go for an angled or straight cut depending on what is needed.
Step-5: Cutting Limbs
For large sized branches, you may want to start by cutting a notch below the branch. This will ensure that the branch is falling at right the direction. Be sure that you are not directly under the branch so that when it falls it is well away from you.
Can You Use a Pole Saw as a Chainsaw?
You could use an electric or gas pole saw as a chainsaw, however it is not recommended. A dedicated chainsaw offers much better control on the tool and is well balanced to make somewhat accurate cuts. While you can remove the pole and use it as regular chainsaw, it offers less control and is too small for felling trees. Chainsaws come in different sizes with bar length from 10-inches to massive 59-inches.
Is a Pole Saw Worth It?
The pole saw is a handy tool to use when you need to cut or prune branches from trees. It’s also quite handy if you want to trim some hedges and foliage that are out of your reach as well.
A manual pole saw will save you money, but will take a lot of hard labor to get the job done. If you have lot of branches to cut, a power pole saw will can do that effortlessly.
- What is a Pole Saw?
- Pole Saw Uses
- How to Use a Pole Saw?