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BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX Review

This model gets small jobs done with ease, but it's lacking power and advantageous features when compared to others
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Price:   $200 List | $188 at Amazon
Pros:  Light, quiet, small, cheap
Cons:  Lacking performance, weak battery, no chain brake
Manufacturer:   BLACK+DECKER
By Ross Patton ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Oct 25, 2019
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48
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#8 of 9
  • Saw Performance - 35% 4
  • Ease of Use - 30% 6
  • Battery - 25% 3
  • Noise - 10% 8

Our Verdict

The BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX is not a high-performance chainsaw, but that's not what it was designed for. This model would be a good option for someone who is looking to make cuts through smaller diameter branches and rounds every once in a while. If you're used to using a hand saw for small jobs around the back yard, this is a huge step up. It does have a few advantages over the high-performance competition — In the weight category, it is one of the lightest chainsaws on the market. Also, it's very quiet so if you're worried about disturbing neighbors or nature this saw is a good option. The MAX is quite the bargain. If budget is an issue this might be the right saw for you.


Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award  
Price $200 List
$188.13 at Amazon
$330 List
$325.53 at Amazon
$500 List
$499.99 at Amazon
$260 List
Check Price at Amazon
$250 List
$229.00 at Amazon
Star Rating
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Pros Light, quiet, small, cheapExcellent sawing power, good battery life, relatively inexpensiveInstant wind-up time, metal bucking spikes, M18 battery system works with many other toolsSpectacular battery life, two chain speed settings, barely consumes bar and chain oilBarely consumes oil, good performance, weather-resistant
Cons Lacking performance, weak battery, no chain brakeHeavy, noisyExpensive, uses a lot of oil, bulkyNot the strongest cutting power, plastic chain tensioning system, electronic controls slow down sawingSlow wind-up time, no battery level indicator, no bucking spikes
Bottom Line This model gets small jobs done with ease, but it’s lacking power and advantageous features when compared to othersIf you’re looking for an amazing cordless chainsaw that performs better than the rest, we suggest you go with the ECHO CCS-58V4AHThis cordless chainsaw has zero wind-up time, cuts like a dream, and has a battery that works with a massive list of other Milwaukee toolsIf you aren’t concerned about having a top tier cordless chainsaw, the Husqvarna still offers a good degree of performance at a reasonable priceNot a bad choice for an efficient cordless chainsaw that offers a high level of performance
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Rating Categories BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX ECHO CCS-58V4AH Milwaukee M18 FUEL Husqvarna 120i EGO Power+ CS1400
Saw Performance (35%)
10
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4
10
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9
10
0
8
10
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6
10
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7
Ease Of Use (30%)
10
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6
10
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8
10
0
7
10
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6
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6
Battery (25%)
10
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3
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7
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7
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8
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6
Noise (10%)
10
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8
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6
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6
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7
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7
Specs BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX ECHO CCS-58V4AH Milwaukee M18 FUEL Husqvarna 120i EGO Power+ CS1400
Model Number LCS1240 CCS-58V4AH 2727-21HD 120i CS1400
Measured Body Dimesions 15x8.5x7 inches 16x8x9 inches 18.5x9x8 inches 19x7x7 inches 16x9x8 inches
Bar Length 12 inches 16 inches 16 inches 14 inches 14 inches
Measured Weight w/ Battery 8 lbs 6 oz 14 lbs 4 oz 14 lbs 4 oz 10 lbs 11 oz 11 lbs 10 oz
Measured Battery Weight 1 lb 5 oz 4 lbs 3 lbs 6 oz 2 lbs 12 oz 2lbs 14 oz
Included Battery Size 2 Ah 4 Ah 12 Ah 4.2 Ah 2 Ah
Nominal Voltage 40V 58V 36V 36V 56V
Measured Runtime 18 minutes 34 minutes 33 minutes 40 minutes 24 minutes
Measured Run Time Eco Mode n/a n/a n/a 54 mins n/a
Measured Battery Charge Time 3.6 hr 1 hr 1.3 hr 2 hrs .75 hr
Measured Average Cutting Time 35.53 seconds 6.136 seconds 8.316 seconds 13.486 seconds 9.452 seconds
Measured Wind Up Time 1.75 seconds .5 seconds Instant .5 seconds 2.5 seconds
Measured Decibel Reading at 48in 83.3 dBa 87.5 dBa 86.8 dBa 85.9 dBa 85.3 dBa
Control Type Thumb safety Thumb safety w/ chain brake Side safety w/ chain brake Electronic button, side safety and brake Side safety w/ chain brake
Chain Replacement and Tensioning Type Tool free Included Tool Included Tool Tool free Tool free
Metal Bucking Spikes No No Yes No No
Oil Conservation 4 8 6 8 8
Bar & Chain Tank Location and Type Top, Screen Side Side Side, flip-up Side, Screen

Our Analysis and Test Results

There are two things about the BLACK+DECKER that make it stand out from the others — it's extremely light and produces minimal noise. This model scores low in our review compared to the others, but only because we are testing products that are designed to operate at the highest of levels. It is still a great addition to your personal collection of yard tools.

The BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX is cheap  light  and quiet but doesn't offer the best performance.
The BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX is cheap, light, and quiet but doesn't offer the best performance.

Performance Comparison



Likes


Although it doesn't have much power, the BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX can easily handle light-duty jobs. As long as you aren't in any hurry, it cuts through logs that are smaller than the bar length.

The BLACK+DECKER takes a long time to make a cut  but it eventually gets through medium-sized logs.
The BLACK+DECKER takes a long time to make a cut, but it eventually gets through medium-sized logs.

One thing that we love about the MAX is that it's light.


The BLACK+DECKER is also incredibly quiet. With a measured volume of only 83.3 decibels, it is one of the friendliest saws to have to listen to. Chainsaws are very loud, it is nice that this model isn't quite so harsh on the ears.


Dislikes


The MAX battles to make cuts through larger rounds of wood. If you find a bigger job that this saw can handle, the battery does not last long, and once the battery is done it takes a ridiculously long time to charge. The run time was one of the very shortest during our tests and it takes more than three hours to get the battery back to full charge.


The BLACK+DECKER has an awkward battery compartment location that throws off its balance.

We aren't fond of the battery action or location of the BLACK+DECKER model
We aren't fond of the battery action or location of the BLACK+DECKER model

Despite its weak battery, sub-par performance, and comfort, its worst trait is the lack of a chain brake. Although a kickback is unlikely due to the lack of power, it's still possible. A chainsaw kickback without an inertia-triggered chain brake could potentially cause a very bad situation.

Value


The BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX is very cheap, but with its low cost comes very low performance when set side by side with the other saws in our review. That being said, if you're looking for a cordless chainsaw for light-duty projects, the cost of the MAX is well worth it.

The BLACK+DECKER hardly emits noise when compared to other models tested.
The BLACK+DECKER hardly emits noise when compared to other models tested.

Conclusion


The positive aspects that the MAX has going for it are that it's cheap, it's quiet, and it's light. Other than that, unless you only need a cordless chainsaw for light duties, we recommend that you spend the extra cash to get a tool that does a better job.


Ross Patton