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Worx WG303.1 Review

If budget is your overall purchasing decision-making factor, this average saw will get the job done for cheap
Worx WG303.1
Credit: Worx
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Price:   $120 List | $99.99 at Amazon
Pros:  Decent saw performance, light for this type, good oil tank cap location, extremely affordable
Cons:  Mediocre chain tensioning system, slow wind-up time
Manufacturer:   Worx
By Ross Patton ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Jul 21, 2022
Our Editors independently research, test, and rate the best products. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Learn more
66
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#7 of 10
  • Saw Performance - 35% 8.0
  • Ease of Use - 30% 6.0
  • Power Performance - 25% 6.0
  • Noise - 10% 5.0

Our Verdict

The Worx WG303.1 is very budget-friendly. Our team found that when the chain was properly tightened, this model did a commendable job of cutting. Unfortunately, the chain tensioning system took our seasoned chainsaw experts quite a bit of tinkering to get dialed, especially during the process of changing a chain. Once we got the chain to proper tension, we found that the chain tended to come loose at a somewhat alarming rate. When we put the WG303.1 on the scale, we found it to be lighter than several other saws in our review. It's also nice to have the oil tank on top of the saw body so that you don't need to rest it on its side to refill.

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Price $120 List
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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Decent saw performance, light for this type, good oil tank cap location, extremely affordableGreat cutting performance, cord stopper, intuitive tensioning system, oil flow is adjustableSolid saw performance, easy to start, great tensioning system, light for this type of sawSpectacular battery life, two chain speed settings, barely consumes bar and chain oilCompact, light, quiet, affordable
Cons Mediocre chain tensioning system, slow wind-up timeOil tank location is not ideal, cord placement could be better, limitations of corded toolsNoisy, short bar for this type of sawNot the strongest cutting power, plastic chain tensioning system, electronic controls slow down sawingMediocre battery life, slow at making cuts
Bottom Line If budget is your overall purchasing decision-making factor, this average saw will get the job done for cheapA corded model that quickly slices through wood and has an easy-to-use tensioning systemA smaller high-performance 2-cycle model that requires minimal knowledge of gas-powered machinesA good degree of performance and an exceptional battery life at a reasonable priceThis cordless electric chainsaw is our favorite 20V model for small, quick projects around the yard
Rating Categories Worx WG303.1 Makita UC4051A Stihl MS 180 C-BE Husqvarna 120i Worx WG322
Saw Performance (35%)
8.0
9.0
8.0
6.0
6.0
Ease of Use (30%)
6.0
8.0
8.0
6.0
7.0
Power Performance (25%)
6.0
6.0
8.0
8.0
4.0
Noise (10%)
5.0
6.0
4.0
7.0
9.0
Specs Worx WG303.1 Makita UC4051A Stihl MS 180 C-BE Husqvarna 120i Worx WG322
Model Number WG303.1 UC4051A 180 C-BE 120i WG322
Bar Length 16 inches 16 inches 16 inches 14 inches 10 inches
Power Source Corded Electric Corded Electric Gasoline Battery Battery
Measured Weight 10 lbs 13 oz 12 lbs, 6 oz 11 lbs, 10 oz 10 lbs, 11 oz 6 lbs, 10 oz
Measured Battery Weight n/a n/a n/a 2 lbs, 12 oz 1 lbs, 10 oz
Amps 15 A 15 A n/a 4.2 A 2 A
Motor Size 15 Amp 15 Amp 32cc 2-Cycle 36V 20V
Measured Runtime n/a n/a 36 minutes 40 minutes 22 minutes
Measured Run Time Eco Mode n/a n/a n/a 54 mins n/a
Recharge/Refuel Time n/a n/a 1 min 120 min 180 min
Measured Average Cutting Time 7.4 seconds 5.7 seconds 7.7 seconds 13.5 seconds 38.4 seconds
Measured Wind Up Time 1 second 0.5 seconds 0.5 seconds 0.5 seconds 2 seconds
Measured Decibel Reading at 48in 99.1 dBa 94.1 dBa 103.4 dBa 85.9 dBa 80.0 dBa
Control Type Side safety w/ chain brake Side safety w/ chain brake Thumb safety w/ chain brake Electronic button, side safety and brake Thumb safety
Chain Replacement and Tensioning Type Tool free Tool free Tool free Tool free Tool free
Metal Bucking Spikes Yes Yes Yes No No
Oil Conservation 8 9 8 8 8
Bar & Chain Tank Location and Type Top Top Side Side, flip-up Top
Measured Body Dimesions 17 x 12 x 6.5 inches 19 x 6 x 6 inches 14 x 8 x 7.5 inches 19 x 7 x 7 inches 13 x 8 x 7.5 inches

Our Analysis and Test Results

Worx is widely known for making super-affordable power tools that often cost a small fraction of the products manufactured by competing brands. However, more often than not, the lower cost correlates to an unimpressive performance. With their corded chainsaw, the WG303.1, this is precisely the case. The person we would recommend this saw to is someone who is shopping on an extremely tight budget and is willing to spend extra time tinkering with their chain and dragging extension cords around instead of making a larger investment.

Performance Comparison


Worx WG303.1 chainsaw - the worx wg303.1 is an ultra-affordable corded electric chainsaw...
The Worx WG303.1 is an ultra-affordable corded electric chainsaw that works well when it has proper chain tension, which is rare.
Credit: Ross Patton

Likes


The strongest suit for the Worx WG303.1 is its cutting performance. We tested all of our chainsaws head-to-head using the exact same dimensions and type of lumber. We timed how long it took each model to completely slice through our "fake log" consisting of four 4x4s several times, then calculated an average.


During this evaluation, the WG303.1 showed an impressive average time of 7.4 seconds, finishing ahead of the majority of the pack. Our power tool experts also found this model to have good balance and handling while cutting through logs at the test site.

Worx WG303.1 chainsaw - the worx wg303.1 does a great job on smaller logs.
The Worx WG303.1 does a great job on smaller logs.
Credit: Ross Patton

We like that the WG303.1 comes with metal bucking spikes, and we found the oil tank cap to be in a location that is very easy to use.

Metal bucking spikes help with leverage while making cuts.
Metal bucking spikes help with leverage while making cuts.
Tank caps that are on top make refilling bar & chain oil a breeze.
Tank caps that are on top make refilling bar & chain oil a breeze.

Dislikes


While we did find some features on the Worx WG303.1 that improve its overall ease of use, there is a flaw where the designers missed the mark. The tool-free chain tensioning system consists of one wheel that you turn in one direction to tension the chain and then the other direction to secure the bar. This seems to do an ok job once you have found the sweet spot where this functions properly. However, if you are completely removing the bar and replacing the chain there is quite a bit of trial & error involved to get the correct amount of revolutions on the knob to where it will tension the chain and also secure the bar.

Worx WG303.1 chainsaw - the singular wheel tensioning system on this model does not work as...
The singular wheel tensioning system on this model does not work as well as tool-free systems that have two separate adjustments.
Credit: Ross Patton

We considered the pros and cons of having either a corded electric, battery-powered, or gas-powered motor. While some manufacturers claim that corded electric models have an unlimited runtime, we quickly discovered that this is not the case. All chainsaws require bar & chain oil and the levels must be checked often and filled up as needed. Also, motors such as the one used by the Worx WG303.1 are not designed to constantly run and are prone to overloading and overheating.

Worx WG303.1 chainsaw - corded electric models do not have an unlimited runtime. they...
Corded electric models do not have an unlimited runtime. They require bar & chain oil and can quickly overheat.
Credit: Ross Patton

Although it is nice to forget about battery charge times or filling tanks up with gas, being limited to the length of an extension cord is far from ideal. In our experience, the vast majority of tasks that require a chainsaw are further than 100 feet from a power outlet. Considering that cordless and 2-cycle models are infinitely more mobile than corded versions, we'd say that those who are going to want to purchase this type of saw are in the minority.

Worx WG303.1 chainsaw - even with a 100-foot extension cord, the corded electric models...
Even with a 100-foot extension cord, the corded electric models couldn't quite reach to certain parts of our test site.
Credit: Ross Patton

Value


The Worx WG303.1 is extremely budget-friendly, but with a lackluster overall performance compared to other corded-electric models, we'd recommend spending more money for more performance.

Conclusion


If you're in a pinch and you need an affordable corded electric chainsaw, the Worx WG303.1 will probably suit your needs. It cuts well when the chain is at the perfect tension and it's lightweight. We like the top-fill style of the oil tank and we are always fans of metal bucking spikes. However, the chain tensioning system does not work very well. If you can spend a little extra money, we'd highly recommend going with a better model.

Ross Patton
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