Can I Use 10w40 For Chainsaw Bar Oil? (4 Useful Facts)

Bar oil is very important to keep the chainsaw moving and active. A perfect chainsaw bar oil can even help for better performances.

If we notice the oils, almost every oil seems to be the same to us. That’s why we get confused and don’t know if that oil is okay for our chainsaw or not. 10w40 oil is one of those confusing oils.

So, can I use 10w40 for chainsaw bar oil?

Well, you can use 10w40 as a chainsaw bar oil. But you should use this in emergencies if you don’t have any alternatives. It is not so good to use it as regular oil. Because it can become very sticky, and tacky sometimes, it can’t reach through the chain for increased viscosity, is not environment friendly, etc.

That’s not all! There are many more things to know for you! So, let’s keep reading!

4 Facts to Know Before Using 10w40 for Chainsaw Bar Oil

Chainsaw and its other parts are actually made of tough objects like stainless steel. That’s why when you use it, the parts of the chain keep moving and generate friction.

This friction can hamper the chain and other parts of the chainsaw. It can also even generate chainsaw sparks and fires there.

That’s why, to avoid damage to the chainsaw and its other parts, lubrication is necessary. For that, we will need to use some oils.

Well, there can be some problems with the chainsaw and bandsaw motor problems too.

Can you use any oil for chainsaw bar oil? No, you cannot use any kind of oil for chainsaw bar oil. There are some characteristics that this oil must have.

Like, the oil should be thin enough so that it can be slippery and go through all the parts of the chain to lubricate it and also so that the chain can move smoothly through the object like wood chips, etc.

Again, the oil should also be thick and tacky enough so that it can be somewhat sticky. So that the oil can stick to the parts of the chain and keep the chain lubricated at a high velocity or speed. 

As a result, you will not fill the oil again and again.

Both of these characteristics are important for chainsaw bar oil. Now let’s come back to our topic. Can I use 10w40 for bar oil?

Actually, the answer to the question is- Yes! You can use 10w40 for your chainsaw bar oil. It can work well as a chainsaw bar oil. But this oil is not perfect to use regularly. Because there are some disadvantages.

There are also some advantages of it for which you can use it as a bar oil sometimes. Like, 10w40 is a multi-weight oil. It means that this oil will perform well in hot and cold.

In summer, the oil weight becomes 40. The SAE ratings of the oil then become 40 which is almost the value of the ideal one. The viscosity also becomes very high. That’s why this oil is perfect to use in summer.

In winter, there are some problems that you can face while using this as a bar oil. Because of all these problems, people prefer not to use it in the winter.

Then you will need to switch the oil again to another one. So, it’s better not to use it as a regular one. You should use it if you don’t have other alternatives to use.

Can I use 10w30 for chainsaw bar oil? Well, the answers and possibilities are the same here as the 10w40 oil. Well, there are other good chainsaw bar oil substitutes too. Like, vegetable oil, canola oil, etc.

Now, let’s know the reasons why you shouldn’t use 10w40 oil as a chainsaw bar oil in the winter. Here we have described all of them.

Let’s go!

Step 1: Increased Stickiness When Heats Up

As you already know that stickiness is a very important characteristic of a chainsaw bar oil. The stickiness of the oil should not be too much and should not be less too. It should always be somewhere between that.

Actually, the oil becomes sticky because of its increased viscosity and tackiness.

You can know the viscosity level of oil from its SAE Viscosity grades. The more viscosity and tackiness, the more sticky the oil will be and the SAE rating will increase too.

In winter, for keeping the chainsaw lubricated, the viscosity of the bar oil should be less. And the oil should be less sticky too.

At first, when you fill the oil, the SAE rating of the oil is 10. This rating is actually ideal for the chainsaw.

But when the engine or motor heats up, the viscosity of the oil increases. Because of the heat, the oil becomes very tacky enough too. As a result, the oil becomes very sticky too. 

Because of this increased stickiness, the oil sticks at a fixed place. The oil will not keep the chain lubricated, instead, it will become so sticky and non-moving for this reason.

So, this can eventually harm the parts of the chainsaw and chain.

Step 2: Dryness of the Chain

How can oil make a chain dry? Is it even possible? Let’s know it!

We have already known that a bar oil should be thin enough to reach all the parts of the chain and keep it lubricated.

And as you already know, in winter the viscosity of the 10w40 oil increases a lot. That’s why the oil becomes very tacky too. And the thickness of the oil increases too much.

When the oil becomes very thick and sticky, it doesn’t move. It sticks to the same place. Moreover, because of the increased thickness, the oil can’t reach all the parts of the chain. 

As a consequence, the chain doesn’t get lubricated through the oil.

And because of the lack of oil, it becomes very dry and friction increases too. Then chainsaws have sparks too. And it can also damage all the parts of the chain too.

Step 3: Performance Drop

What is the performance drop? While using the chainsaw, suddenly it stops working. This is called a performance drop.

But how is it related to this oil?

Now we already know how and why 10w40 oil becomes very thick and very sticky in the winter when the motor heats up. Because of this, the oil becomes very thick and can’t reach the parts of the chain.

That’s why friction happens more. After some time, because of more friction, the engine or motor stops working. It can happen in the middle of using the chainsaw. As a result, a performance drop happens.

Sometimes, the chainsaw won’t start for a shortage of gas. That’s why you should also make sure, why the performance drop happens.

Step 4: Not Environment-Friendly

The oil is not environmentally friendly. Only vegetable oil is an environmentally-friendly oil. But the ingredients of 10w40 oil don’t contain any ingredients from vegetable oil.

Moreover while functioning and going through the chains, the oil scatters all around the places and falls on the landscape and trees. 

It can also fall on your clothes and ruin them. And create stains on your clothes.

Here we have suggested some oil stain remover for you.

Hope they will be useful for you.

That’s all. Now you know all the advantages and disadvantages of oil. If you want to use this oil, then use this oil in the engine, only in the summer. Otherwise, you should only use it when you don’t have any options to use it.

Can you use motor oil as bar oil in a chainsaw? Yes, you can use motor oil. But it will be better not to use it as a regular one.


What are the differences between motor oil and bar oil?

Well, there are many differences between bar oil and motor oil. One of those important differences is the stickiness of the oil. Bar oil is stickier than motor oil.

As the motor oil is less sticky, it doesn’t stay stuck in the chain for more time. As a result, it flings off the chain quickly. And that’s why you will need to refill the chainsaw with oil again and again.

What is the importance of bar oil or chain oil?

Well, bar oil or chain oil is important to protect the chain of the chainsaw. While using the chainsaw, the chain of it goes through a lot of friction. Because of the friction, fire can take place in the chain and it can burn out too. That’s why lubrication or oil is very necessary. 

What is Stihl bar oil?

Stihl bar oil is one of those bar oils that keeps the chainsaw lubricated and moving. But there is a specialty of this oil. The specialty is that this oil is environmentally friendly. The main ingredient of this oil is vegetable oil. Moreover, in low temperatures, it even has awesome flow characteristics. 


Hoping that now you have the perfect answer to your query, Can I use 10w40 for chainsaw bar oil?

From our expert guidelines, you know the appropriate response and also some facts to consider before using 10w40 for chainsaw bar oil.

It’s time to say goodbye, my friend. Share with us about your experience and adventure.

Till then, Good Luck!

Jim Boslice

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