Top 8 Causes of Poulan Chainsaw Smoke and How to Fix It

The appearance of smoke from your chainsaw is cause for concern. You should take great care not to break your saw. I’ll go over some of the potential triggers for this, so you can repair it and maybe prevent any serious consequences.

If your Poulan chainsaw is smoking, check for these common causes: too much oil in the fuel mixture; water in the fuel system; a clogged air filter; increased friction between the bar and chain.

Use extreme caution when attempting to diagnose and fix problems with your chainsaw. Turn off the chainsaw, let the engine cool, and then remove the spark plug boot.

poulan chainsawBefore diagnosing, repairing, or operating, be sure you’ve read and understood all of the safety recommendations in the equipment’s operator’s manual.If you don’t feel confident in your ability to conduct the repair safely due to a lack of experience, training, or health, it’s best to call in an expert.

Smoke Extends from the Bar and Chain of a Poulan Chainsaw

When the bar and chain of your Poulan chainsaw begin to smoke during cutting, you should inspect the area for potential sources of increased friction.

This could be due to the chain becoming dull, greasy, or stuck on the bar.

Improperly Sharpened or Dull Chain

If the chain on your chainsaw is dull, it will smoke and not cut wood very well. This is because greater force is required to cut wood when the chain is dull or improperly sharpened.

Metal on metal friction from the pressure creates heat and smoke.

Indicators of a worn chain include:

  • In order to make a cut, more force must be applied to the bar.
  • When you make a cut, you create fine sawdust.
  • Broken links or chips in the metal.
  • Cracked teeth and dull rakers.

The chains can be honed by oneself. I recommend having a professional sharpen your chains if you don’t have experience doing so. A poorly sharpened chain poses a significant risk to anyone using it.

Bar and Chain Oil Shortage

When your chainsaw’s bar and chain aren’t properly lubricated, friction will increase. Possible causes include insufficient oil in the tank or a clogged oiler.

If the oil in the bar and chain tank is low or gone completely, fill it.

Run your chainsaw at about half to three-quarters throttle to make sure there is enough oil on the bar. Hold the bar less than a foot off the ground and observe for a line of oil to drip off it.

Ensure that the bar is in good shape and the oil channel is clear if you are experiencing poor lubrication. If the guide bar is damaged or worn, you should replace it and clean the oil channel.

Refilling the bar and chain oil with each gas refill is a nice habit to get into with your Poulan. However, you may need to check and refill the oil in the saw more frequently if you are using oil that is too thin.

Incorrect Lubricant for Bars and Chains

Damage to the bar and chain, as well as increased friction and smoke, could result from using oil that is too thin. Too light of an oil and the bar and chain can just slide right off.

Poulan Pro oil is a good example of high-quality bar and chain oil that should be used.

Tight Chain

The chain will become increasingly slack as it is used, so be sure to check on it frequently and tighten it as necessary. Tightening the chain too much prevents it from spinning freely around the bar, which leads to greater friction and smoke.

Poulan chainsaw chain tension adjustment:

  • Taking off the spark plug wire.
  • Release the chain’s tension.
  • The cover for the clutch and chain brake has to have its holding bolts loosened.
  • Raise the bar’s apex and hold it there.
  • To relax the chain, turn the tensioning screw counterclockwise, and to tighten it, turn it in the opposite direction.
  • Once you have the right amount of tension, tighten the bar holding nuts while still keeping the bar’s nose up.

The chain should be wrapped tightly around the bar, yet should be free to slide along it. Avoid having it dangle too much from the guiding bar.

Smoke from the Engine and Exhaust of a Poulan Chainsaw

If your chainsaw is smoking while operating, check for airflow problems such a clogged air filter or an incorrect fuel mixture.

The Air Filter Is Blocked

Using a chainsaw can get your hands muddy. The air is filled with sawdust and bits of wood.

Your chainsaw’s engine will run more efficiently if you utilize an air filter. The engine is protected from debris like dirt and sawdust that could clog the carburetor throat thanks to the filter.

If you only use your chainsaw occasionally, you should inspect the air filter before each usage and change it once a year. If you use the saw frequently, the filter should be checked on a regular basis and replaced if it gets too dirty or is broken.

If the filter isn’t checked and cleaned on a regular basis, it might become so dirty that it blocks airflow.

There will be excessive smoke and a high fuel mixture. A lack of air could cause the engine to fail.

Inadequate Gasoline to Oil Ratio

Poulan chainsaws call for a 40:1 mixture of gas and oil. The engine may start smoking if you use more oil than this.

When you figure out that the smoke is due to an improper gas-to-oil ratio, you can fix the problem by draining the tank and refilling it.

In most cases, this would not be harmful in the long run. Too much oil in the engine can lead to carbon buildup in the exhaust, which can disrupt engine performance.

Water in the Fuel Tank

Exhaust smoke can be white if water is included in the fuel. The fuel system and the engine are particularly vulnerable to the corrosive effects of water.

Empty the fuel tank and refill it with a 40:1 mixture of gasoline and 2-cycle engine oil rather than trying to find a way to conserve fuel and remove water. This 2-Cycle Oil is available from Poulan.

To assist get rid of moisture and clean the fuel system, using an additive like Sea Foam Motor Treatment is a good idea. The treated fuel needs to circulate through the system, so start the saw and let it run.