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The Home Depot site indicates there are two classes of pole saws:

1) Electric powered 2) Gas powered

Within electric, there is battery-powered vs corded. This is light duty (palm trees) and small (3/4 inch) branches. This will be for home use and NOT professional use.

Electric powered devices seem more cost effective and corded devices are simpler. The maintenance fellow will operate the device. What other considerations should drive the decision making between electric vs gas and corded vs batter?

If you have purchased and used a polesaw please indicate this in your response and any lessons learned.

closed as primarily opinion-based by isherwood, ThreePhaseEel, Tester101 Mar 21 '17 at 12:56

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • I have a Ryobi 40v chainsaw and have been very impressed. 4-5" hardwood and 6-8" softwood have been no problem. I have my eye out for a compatible pole saw, as I also have the lawn trimmer and leaf blower. That said, since there isn't a specific question being posed about usage or operation, I'm voting to close as a product/opinion question. – isherwood Mar 20 '17 at 18:19
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Most essential is keep the chain lubricated and sharpened. I only fill mine with half a tank of gas because my experience it'll run out of chain lube before gas. So do it everytime you add gas - a lot more often if it's electric!

A gas saw will be fussy and high maintenance. A battery electric won't have a whole lot of guts. A corded electric will be fairly strong if you can get power out to it. Those cheapie orange extension cords don't really cut it.

A stupid person can seriously damage a pole saw, notably by damaging the pole and shaft running up the pole. An electric that puts the motor out on the pole is unwieldy but relieves that issue.

I'm taking note that you're buying this tool for someone else to use; clearly not a professional since those guys bring their own tools. A homeowner must pay to fix his tool; a professional also loses revenue and reputation when he can't do a job because of bad tools. Those non-professionals can be hard on tools because they don't have any personal stake in them.

Needless to say, professionals don't buy tools at Home Depot. If you want the Bridgeport/Monarch/Sony/Apple/3M of chainsaws, that's arguably Stihl.

  • Nice idea regarding a half-tank of fuel! – bitsmack Mar 21 '17 at 1:36
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I have the Remington Branch Wizard Pro, and am happy with it. Having the entire electric chainsaw at the end can be cumbersome when the pole is at full extension, but the lack of maintenance is what made me decide to go electric since I only use it about once per year. I have never found it to be underpowered.

  • Maintenance: did not think of this important consideration – gatorback Mar 21 '17 at 1:17
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After a lot of research, I bought a corded-electric Black+Decker PP610 pole saw last year. The reviews were good, the saw is slender, it's more powerful than some (at 6.5A), and it has a 10-inch bar.

I'm not a professional, but I spent weeks cutting down 300' of old laurel that had grown 25 feet high! Lots of time, lots of cuts. The saw didn't bog down, even on the 8-inch trunks.

One of my concerns buying it was that the saw couldn't disconnect from the pole. I wanted to be able to chop the wood into pieces once it was on the ground. But it turns out that the pole is very nice for that! If you retract the pole, it's just the right length to stand there and cut felled branches without having to bend over :)

I like the electric aspect because there's no fussing with an engine, no gas to mix, etc. Just take it off the wall, plug it in, and it goes.

Oh, and as @Harper stated, don't cheap out on the extension cords. Look for something at least #12AWG. I found some #10AWG (which is bigger than #12) at Costco last year for less than the #12's cost at home improvement stores.

By the way, I bought this saw from Home Depot, but it looks like they don't have it any more. My link (above) is to Amazon, and is cheaper than I paid at the Home Depot.

  • Excellent advice regarding extension cord: I would not have thought this – gatorback Mar 21 '17 at 1:17

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