When you’re working with a chainsaw, you never know when you may face danger by way of a falling branch or other large debris, which is why using the best chainsaw helmet possible is so important. If you’ve already invested time shopping around online for a new helmet and you’re still not sure what features to look for, then my in-depth buyer’s guide will come in handy. It includes all of the essential features every helmet should have and discusses how you can tell a helmet is high-quality or whether you’re dealing with a model that will need to be replaced within a matter of months.
I’ve also tested several of the top-selling models, narrowing my choices down to four helmets that both the DIYers and pros will appreciate. Below, you’ll find my comparison chart, which includes each of the models that made it onto my list, their best features, and how they rated.
Chainsaw Helmet Comparison Chart
Oregon 563474 Chainsaw Safety Protective Helmet
This helmet comes with a six-point adjustment harness, designed for ultimate breathability. This model is impact resistant and is equipped with a stainless-steel mesh visor that flips up and down. The adjustable earmuffs are designed for hearing protection as you saw. This bright yellow helmet is made out of a durable plastic and is available in one size only.
- Highly breathable
- Six-point adjustment harness
- Stainless steel mesh visor
- Only available in one size.
This helmet comes in one size only, however, the six-point harness allows you to expertly adjust the harness for the perfect fit. The color of the helmet allows you to remain highly visible while you work, while the ventilation holes located throughout the helmet can minimize sweating by promoting air circulation.
Greenworks Chainsaw Safety Helmet
The bright green color of the helmet will make you highly visible as you work, while the wire mesh screen will protect your face from flying debris. The earmuffs are removable and adjustable and work to protect your hearing as you saw. This is a one size fits all model that can be adjusted with the use of a dial knob. The helmet is both CE and ANSI approved.
- Removable wire screen mesh visor
- CE and ANSI approved
- Removable earmuffs
- One size fits all
- Helmet size can be difficult to adjust
This helmet is highly adjustable but you may find that adjusting the helmet’s fit can be difficult. The wire mesh visor helps to keep the weight of the helmet down to just two pounds, which is pretty impressive. The lightweight design will promote longer use while reducing neck strain and user fatigue.
STIHL 0000 886 0100 Forestry Helmet System
This pro quality chainsaw helmet is equipped with a built-in rain gutter that will prevent rain from running into your eye during use, which is a must-have safety feature that many helmets lack. The helmet itself is lightweight, comfortable, and highly adjustable. The full-face screen is durable and will protect your eyes from flying debris. Another huge plus, all the parts on the helmet are replaceable, so if the rain gutter, visor, or earmuffs become damaged, you can replace them without having to purchase a whole new helmet.
- Removable earmuffs
- All parts are replaceable
- Includes rain gutter
- Poor breathability
This model is pro-quality all the way and meets class C and class G standards. The full-face visor is epoxy coated and built tough. The helmet itself is durable and lightweight, but the hard shell does not have any holes in it, which can lead to excessive sweating and can make the helmet uncomfortable to wear in hotter weather.
Echo OEM Chainsaw Safety Head Ear Protection Helmet
If you’ve purchased Echo brand products in the past, then you know this is a helmet that’s built tough and designed to last. The durable design combined with the built-in ear protection and mesh visor makes this model a great choice for home or work use. The bright orange color of the helmet will make you highly visible, which is essential if you’re using this model for work purposes. The helmet itself weighs almost four and a half pounds, which can cause neck strain and user discomfort if the helmet is worn for more than an hour.
- Mesh visor
- Ear protection
- Low price
- Does not include ventilation holes
- Earmuffs are not removable
This model is definitely durable, but the hefty design can be a huge drawback for any user that needs a helmet they can wear for several hours at a time without neck fatigue or discomfort. The built-in earmuffs are not removable, which may also be a drawback for some buyers. Overall, this is a durable helmet that’s designed to keep you safe, thanks to the many built-in safety features and solid construction.
Chainsaw Helmet Buyer’s Guide
Many people who have years of experience may scoff at the idea of wearing a helmet when they’re using their saw, but these helmets offer excellent protection and can significantly reduce your chances of an injury during use.
These helmets are designed with safety in mind. The trick here is to find a model that comes with a high safety rating but will also be comfortable to wear for a long period of time.
These helmets are not only designed to protect your head, but many can also protect your vision and your hearing as well.
When you’re cutting down or thinning trees, flying pieces of debris can hit you, a chain can snap, or you may even fall off your ladder. Because of this, it’s important that you use a helmet that’s built tough, designed to stay in place, and one that can handle plenty of damage.
Below, I’ll discuss many of the benefits these helmets have to offer and why you should never use your chainsaw without one.
Benefits of a Chainsaw Helmet
- A chainsaw helmet will protect your head from any falling branches and debris, or can protect your head in the event of a fall.
- These helmets can also protect the head from UV rays, preventing sunburn
- Models that come with earmuffs will provide protection against the loud roaring sound of the motor
- The built-in visors will protect your eyes from any stray debris and can shade your eyes from the sun
- Models that have rain neck protections will prevent rain from running down your shirt or running into your eyes, which can temporarily blind you. If you live in a rainy part of the country, find a model that comes equipped with built-in rain gutters.
- Wearing a helmet can increase productivity because you will feel more confident and safer while completing a task. Since these helmets are designed to specifically protect you from harm, you will feel less stressed when you’re working. This will help to increase your productivity while minimizing the risks of injury.
- A good ventilation system will keep you nice and cool even when you’re working in hotter temperatures and will prevent sweat from running into your eyes. When you’re cutting down a tree or thinning branches, you’ll perspire more. When you wear one of these helmets, it can decrease the level of heat that comes directly from the sunlight, which will prevent you from sweating excessively, reducing any discomfort that can effect you as you work.
- The lack of wearing one of these helmets can lead to severe injury or possibly even death. Because of this, wearing one of these helmets is highly recommended in order to prevent and avoid high impact injuries to the head.
- Many of these helmets are also very lightweight, which will promote longer use and minimize neck strain and user fatigue.
These are just some of the benefits you’ll find when wearing one of these helmets when you’re felling or thinning trees. However, there are many characteristics to look for that will be important for both your comfort and safety, which I’ll discuss below.
Other Important Features
When you wear a helmet, it can mean the difference between a dust-up or a trip to the hospital. But before you buy, there are a lot of features you need to consider, including the face guard, whether it has hearing protection, and what its safety rating is. Because there may be a time when your life actually depends on the quality of the helmet you choose, finding one that’s durable and comes with a high safety rating will be crucial.
These helmets have certain safety standards they must meet. These standards are the basis for the testing of a variety of components on the helmet. The stricter the standards, the safer the helmet. Several of these standards are put in place for both European and United States wearers. CE and ANSI are the most common standards that you’ll need to look for when you’re shopping around to determine if your helmet is compliant.
Some helmets will come in a variety of size options, while others will come with a built-in adjustable harness that will allow you to adjust the size of the helmet for the perfect fit. These one-size-fits-all helmets are often easy to adjust with the help of a knob that you’ll turn to tighten or enlarge the harness system. If you’re buying a model that’s available in different sizes, then make sure you pay attention to the dimensions and measure your head to ensure you purchase a helmet that fits properly.
The helmet you buy should fit comfortably and should not easily slip off. Before your purchase a helmet online, take a look at the dimensions and how adjustable the straps are. A helmet that’s constantly falling back or forward can be difficult to use and will not provide the type of protection and comfort you need to get the job done. You should also ensure the model you buy is lightweight, otherwise you will quickly experience neck strain under the heavy weight of the helmet.
The helmet you wear should distribute pressure evenly on the head and should be comfortable to wear. If possible, before you buy online, visit a local home improvement store and try on as many models as possible. This will allow you to learn how comfortable and adjustable it is. Each model will come with a strap or dial knob that you can adjust to ensure the proper fit.
You need a helmet that you can wear when you’re completing other tasks, not only when you use your chainsaw. A versatile helmet will give you more bang for your buck and can provide a higher level of safety when you need it the most.
A helmet should also have small ventilation holes that will help with circulating the air inside the helmet when it starts to get hot. This will help to keep your head cool and can keep you nice and comfortable.
The color of the helmet really won’t matter in terms of how safe it can keep you, but it will play an important role in terms of how visible you are to others. A yellow or orange helmet can easily be spotted from a distance, even in poor lighting conditions. White helmets can be a great choice since they can reflect heat and prevent you from getting overheated.
Types of Visor
All models will come equipped with a visor, which will protect your eyes against the glare of the sun and any flying debris. A model that’s safety compliant will feature three-point locking positions, which are perfect for a variety of needs and working positions. There are a few types of visors to choose from. Mesh is the most common type. Mesh visors are designed to prevent debris from getting into your eyes and making contact with your face. These visors will not impair your vision, so you will have high visibility and will be able to easily see as you work. The mesh is made out of plastic or metal. Metal will be more durable, which is why many professionals prefer to go with this type of material.
Clear visors are another option, and some people will prefer this type since it provides high visibility, yet it can also easily become scratched. There are no small holes in plastic visors, which can also make them very uncomfortable to wear in intense heat. Additionally, in humid conditions, these visors also have a tendency to fog up. These visors are not as commonly used as mesh. The fact that they can fog up due to working in a humid environment, or even due to the wearer’s breath can make them inconvenient to use.
Most models will be made out of:
These hard materials will absorb some of the shock you’ll experience when an object falls on your head. These materials are durable and designed to handle a beating, however, some can also add some serious weight to the helmet.
Some of these helmets can be pretty pricey. You will come across basic helmets and those that are loaded with all the right bells and whistles including both vision and hearing protection. Obviously, these models will cost more, but considering the level of safety they provide, they’re definitely worth every penny.
Most manufacturers will include a product warranty on a helmet up to one year. On average, many manufacturers will cover their helmets for a minimum of six months against manufacturing defects. Of course, regardless of how new the helmet is, once you have been in an accident, the helmet must be replaced immediately, even if damage to the helmet is not apparent. This is because the helmet’s ability to protect you has been compromised, so it may not be able to offer the same level of protection in the event of another accident.
Do I Need a Chainsaw Helmet?
If you consider yourself an outdoorsman, then at some point, you’ll find yourself using a chainsaw, whether you’re clearing fallen trees on your property, or doing a little trimming. But even if you’re just working on your property, safety is crucial. A helmet will be even more of a necessity if you have no prior chainsaw experience. In the beginning, you’ll have a hard time dealing with flying debris, kickback, and other issues. These helmets can basically ensure your safety when you’re processing firewood, or felling trees, more so than any other type of safety gear can.
Hearing and vision protection are also important, especially if you’ll be using a chainsaw for an extended period of time. Many people mistakenly believe that because they have experience, a helmet isn’t necessary, but if you’re working high up, anything can happen. All it takes is letting your guard down for a few minutes and an accident can occur. So yes, even if you’re just working on your property, handling small or medium-sized jobs, or you have several years of experience, a helmet will always be necessary.
Frequently Asked Questions
When Does a Chainsaw Helmet Need to Be Replaced?
When a helmet needs to be replaced will depend on a variety of factors including how long you’ve had the helmet. Most pros recommend replacing the helmet when there are visible problems such as dents or cracks or once you have been involved in an accident when wearing it.
What are the Chainsaw Helmet Safety Standards?
Buy a helmet that comes with safety certifications in order to ensure that it has undergone independent testing. The European Conformity and the American National Standards Institute are both reputable institutions that perform these types of tests. Certification from either or both of these organizations will show that a particular model has undergone stringent testing.
What Parts Make Up a Chainsaw Helmet?
Most models will consist of three main parts: the visor for eye protection, the earmuffs for hearing protection, and the hard hat for head protection. These helmets also come with a chin strap that’s adjustable, which will allow you to achieve a custom fit.
When you’re shopping for the best chainsaw helmet, it’s important to consider safety first. In order for a helmet to provide top level protection it needs to be made out of durable, thick material, but it shouldn’t be so heavy that it causes neck strain and discomfort. The products that I’ve recommended here, combined with the buyer’s guide should help you make an informed decision when it’s time to hit that buy now button and purchase a model that’s going to last and prevent serious injury in the event of an accident.