Chainsaw on a stump.Bar and chain oil for chain saws is available from many different brands and in different viscosity types. Depending on the quality of the oil and the season in which it will be used, choosing the correct viscosity can be vital to proper protection and operation of your saw. Here are typical bar and chain oil viscosity grades based on a cross-section of products we researched.

  • Winter– 20 weight
  • Summer– 40 to 50 weight
  • All Season– 30 to 40 weight

Can Motor Oil Be Used As Bar And Chain Oil?

Can you take a 30 weight motor oil and use it as a bar and chain oil? This is not a good idea. Bar and chain oils have additives called “tackifiers”. These additives prevent chainsaw oil from flinging off during high-speed operation. The tacky oil clings to the bar and chain links to prevent dry operation.

A Different Bar and Chain Oil For Winter And Summer?

Should one use a different bar and chain oil viscosity for every season? In our opinion, this is not necessary. A good all-season bar and chain oil will flow well during cold weather and offer suitable film strength during hot weather use. We suspect that cheaper chain oils simply don’t have the capacity to perform adequately in all temperatures and that’s why the cheaper brands are often marketed for single season use.

We carry a semi-synthetic bar and chain oil that is able to offer consistent oil thickness regardless of the ambient temperature. The synthetic component of this oil gives it a high viscosity index. In simpler terms, this means that the viscosity stays consistent across a wide temperature range.