Oilers play an important role in making a chainsaw work effortlessly. A low supply of oil to the bar and chain can cause many problems. Also supplying more oil can lead to additional costs.
Stihl chainsaws include automatic oilers that spray oil onto the bar and chain automatically. Still, we need to get a complete understanding of the Stihl chainsaw oiler adjustment to operate these chainsaws in the most effective way.
In this article, I discuss the oiler adjustment of Stihl chainsaws and related issues. Hope you find it helpful if you have to operate a chainsaw often or seldom.
But before getting into the details of chainsaw oiler adjustment, first, we need to know what an oiler actually is. Let’s begin.
What Is the Oiler of a Stihl Chainsaw
Oilers are special types of pumps that automatically pump oil and ensure the uninterrupted use of the chainsaw. The oil extracted from the oiler acts much like a lubricant and plays an important role in reducing the friction of the chain with the Stihl chainsaw bar.
You need to fill the oil in the oiler’s own tank at the front of the saw. Many people confuse this bar and chain oil with the same oil as chainsaw fuel. Indeed, both types of oils are not the same at all and there are vast differences.
In the early days of chainsaw innovation, operators manually applied oil to the bar and chain. But they have improved a lot with time. Today’s chainsaws include automatic oiler technology that can dynamically apply oil to the bar and chain.
How Do You Know If the Oiler of Stihl Chainsaw Needs Adjustment?
Any tool needs regular adjustment of its parts for smooth use. Since the oiler is an important part of a chainsaw’s smooth operation, it also needs regular adjustment. Some signs indicate that your steel chainsaw’s oiler needs to be adjusted. These are:
- The Chain Is Not Spraying Oil on the Cutting Material
You may notice oil marks on the surface of objects cut using a chainsaw. But if there are no oil marks on the surface, it means that the oiler is not working properly. One way to understand this is that the friction noise of the chain will be slightly higher during operation.
If these types of signs arise, adjust your steel chainsaw’s oiler quickly.
- A Hint of Excess Oil on the Cut Surface
Sometimes the surface of an object cut using a chainsaw will leave a sheen of excess oil. This is a situation where the oiler sprays too much oil. Running the saw like this wastes oil and increases costs.
Whenever you notice excess oil appearing on the cut surface of the object, adjust the oiler without delay.
- The Chain Feels Dry to the Touch
A steel chainsaw’s chain should have an oily feel to the touch. The chain will definitely go through oily to the touch, especially after running for some time. But if you feel the chain appears dry to the touch, you can assume there is a problem with the oiler and it is not pumping oil properly.
In this situation, you must adjust the oiler.
- Oil Is Not Coming Out of the Oiler Hole
One of the best solutions is to check if oil is coming out of the oiler hole to determine if the oiler needs an adjustment. For this, you need to open the clutch cover and separate the chain and bar. Now proceed with the chainsaw carefully.
At this stage, the oil drop should come out from the oiler hole. If it doesn’t, then you need to adjust the oiler on your steel chainsaw.
Cause Of Oiler Not Working On Stihl Chainsaw
There are many reasons oil does not work. So when you find that your chainsaw’s oiler is not working properly, don’t panic and instead look at what is causing the problem.
- Oil Tank Empty
Sometimes we don’t even notice that the oiler’s tank is empty. Now there is no chance of oil coming from an empty tank. So when the oiler does not work properly, first check if there is oil in the oiler tank.
- Dirt in the Groove of the Guide Bar
Dirt builds up in the guide bar grooves or oil passage prevents the oiler from spraying smooth oil. That is why it is important to keep this part clean. If you find dirt accumulated in the groove of the guide bar, clean it quickly without delay.
- Worm Gear Loosening
Although this is not a common problem, sometimes the oiler for Stihl chainsaws does not work because of problems such as worm gear loosening. If this is the case, you will need to replace the worm gear. The video below will guide you to do this.
There are other reasons also that are responsible for the oiler not working. These are:
- Clogging of oil inlet holes.
- Slow oil flow.
- Faulty oil pump.
- Stuck of the Saw.
- Clogging of debris into the hoses.
How Do You Adjust the Oiler on a Stihl Chainsaw?
Adjusting the oiler on a Stihl chainsaw is fairly easy. Chainsaws have an oil adjustment screw on the oiler. By turning it, you can adjust the amount of oil coming out of the oiler.
Stihl chainsaw is one of the most popular chainsaw brands and the procedure for adjusting the oil on almost all models of Stihl chainsaws is the same. I describe 4 easy steps to adjust the oiler of a Stihl MS 180 chainsaw. By following these, you can get the job done in a short period.
Step 1: Wear Protective Gear
Oilers can be harmful to your skin. These oils can cause problems, especially if they get into the eyes. To start working, first put on chainsaw safety gear like leather gloves and goggles.
Step 2: Ensure Uninterrupted Oil Flow
I have discussed above why the oiler may not work properly. You should first clean your chainsaw thoroughly and remove any obstructions to oil flow. In short, clean the area from the oiler to the bar and chain properly.
Step 3: Clean the Oil Tank
Clean the oiler by draining the oil from the tank. If there is any dust or other dirt under the oil inlet hole or bar, clean them as well as the motor housing.
Step 4: Adjust the Oil Flow by Turning the Screw
Stihl chainsaws include an adjustment screw on the oiler. Rotate it using a flathead screwdriver. Turn the screw clockwise to reduce the oil flow. If the oil flow needs to be increased, turn the screw counterclockwise.
When Should You Replace the Oiler of Stihl Chainsaw?
Stihl chainsaws do not require oiler changes very often. When you notice the oiler needs to be adjusted frequently, know it’s time to replace it. Usually, a faulty oiler causes various obstructions while working.
If the oiler isn’t working properly, our first guess is that there’s a blockage somewhere with dirt. But if the oil flow is not normal or I stop the flow of oil after a thorough cleaning, then you must replace the oiler.
What Are the Problems If the Oiler Not Working Properly?
If the oiler is not working properly, you will face several problems while operating the chainsaw. Problems can hamper your work as well as expose you to accidents and major losses. I would like to discuss the problems here briefly.
- Kickback: Chainsaw kickback is a common problem when the oiler is not working in the proper way. The saw getting stuck usually causes this problem.
- Bar and chain wear: If there is no smooth flow of oil to the chain and bar, there is increased friction and the bar and chain wear out faster.
- Chain Breaks: Chain breaks are a very common occurrence if you continue to use a chainsaw with a faulty oiler.
- Increases load on the engine: Improper operation of the oiler causes the chain to get stuck in the wood pieces. Because of this, the engine load increases to keep the chain running. As a result, the ability of the engine to work for a long time decreases.
- Excessive heat generation: Blockage of oil flow in chains and bars leads to excessive heat generation through excessive friction, which can make the working environment intolerable.
How Do You Find Oil Adjustment Screw Of A Stihl Chainsaw?
This screw is located inside the oiler housing, although it is accessible through a hole. Normally you need to turn this screw using a flathead screwdriver to adjust the oil.
Why Does The Oiler Get A Leakage On The Chainsaw?
Typically, the company uses a one-way valve on Stihl chainsaws that allows air to enter the tank. When there is a change in the normal air pressure, the valve cannot act properly and causes things like chainsaw leaks.
Do All Models Of Stihl Chainsaws Have Automatic Oilers?
Yes, almost all models of Stihl chainsaws have an automatic oiler. Smaller chainsaws do not require oiler adjustment. However, medium or large chainsaws may require occasional oiler adjustments.
Can I Repair A Faulty Oiler On A Stihl Chainsaw?
In most cases, faulty oilers are not repairable. You may need to replace the damaged part of the oiler or the entire oiler.
On The Whole
You don’t have to be an expert for Stihl chainsaw oiler adjustment. Just having some knowledge regarding a chainsaw and a little experience using them allows you to realize when to adjust the oiler.
But the moment you realize the oiler needs to be adjusted, do it without delay. Not adjusting the oiler on time can cause damage to both you and the chainsaw.
I hope this article has answered many of your questions about chainsaw oilers. Your comments and more questions encourage me to write more. Thank you.