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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
Top Pick Award
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Price:   $200 List | $199 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

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