Old Faithful: My Stihl Chainsaw


I bought my Stihl MS250 brand new about ten years ago. Like all Stihl products it came with a premium price tag, but it has since proven itself worth every cent.

Being for domestic and camping use it hasn’t worked particularly hard but has had to endure long stretches of sitting on a shelf in the garage, which is not great for petrol motors. It has also lacked regular maintenance from time to time.

Despite this, the MS250 has performed without fault. The only issues I encountered was a brief difficulty starting but that was caused by me flooding the air filter.


Performance lately has been a bit poor, but that is because the chain either needs re-sharpening or replacing and I have done neither. A new chain – along with new filters and spark plug that are also overdue for renewal – and the saw will probably run like new.

For its age and neglect the saw is flawless. It only drips the tiniest amount of bar oil in storage and has not sprung any leaks elsewhere. It revs smoothly and hard and produces plenty of power for my needs despite the overdue servicing. It also doesn’t drink the bar oil too quickly, unlike my 18v battery Dewalt saw that goes through oil quick smart and leaks much more in storage.

The MS250 I purchased was fitted with an 18” inch bar which was the largest Stihl offered on this saw. The extra length has been handy on a couple of occasions clearing larger trees across 4WD tracks but otherwise a 16” bar would have been sufficient for my needs.

But hey, I’m a man and bigger saw is better, right? I mean, who doesn’t want another two inches?!


At the time of purchase I also bought a plastic carry case for the chainsaw and I couldn’t recommend these enough. It was orange when I got it but has faded to an unpleasant yellow over the years.

The case is solid and has an adjustable sheath for different length bars. It offers great protection for the saw but it is an odd shape which can make packing it into the back of a car with other things a bit awkward.

Stihl ms250 chainsaw
Ah yes, official manufacturer photography. Where else would you see such a clean chainsaw? Image: Stihl.


Rating: 5 out of 5.

Despite sporadic maintenance and inconsistent use the MS250 has never let me down. While the world has moved more towards battery tools, there is still a solid case for using petrol saws, especially for commercial use. If I had to buy another petrol saw I’d buy another Stihl without hesitation. Although this one would have to die first and I doubt it ever will.

Disclaimer: this is an independent review, not a sponsored post.