Solving Common Problems with the STIHL MS 310 Chainsaw

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on solving common problems with the STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. The STIHL MS 310 is a powerful and versatile tool, known for its reliability and efficiency in various cutting and trimming tasks. However, like any mechanical device, it may encounter issues from time to time that can hinder its performance.

In this blog post, we will delve into the intricacies of the STIHL MS 310 chainsaw, its features, specifications, and the crucial role of proper maintenance in ensuring its longevity.

Brief Overview of the STIHL MS 310 Chainsaw

The STIHL MS 310 is a formidable chainsaw designed to handle a wide range of cutting tasks. Here are some key features and specifications:

  • Engine Power: The MS 310 boasts a high-performance engine that delivers substantial cutting power. With an engine displacement of 59 cc, it can tackle even the toughest wood and timber.
  • Bar Length: This chainsaw is available with various bar lengths, typically ranging from 16 to 25 inches, allowing you to choose the right fit for your cutting needs.
  • Professional-Grade Chain: Equipped with a STIHL Rapid™ Super chain, it ensures precise and efficient cutting while reducing kickback for enhanced safety.
  • Easy Start System: The MS 310 is designed with an easy-to-pull recoil starter, making it simpler to get the engine running.
  • Anti-Vibration System: STIHL has integrated an anti-vibration system into the design, reducing operator fatigue during extended use.

Importance of Addressing Common Problems for Efficient Operation

As with any mechanical device, the STIHL MS 310 chainsaw may encounter issues over time. It’s essential to address these problems for several reasons:

  • Maintaining Performance: Timely problem-solving ensures that your chainsaw operates at its full potential. This means it will cut through wood more efficiently, saving you time and effort.
  • Safety: Many problems, such as chain-related issues or starting difficulties, can pose safety risks if left unattended. Regular maintenance and troubleshooting can prevent accidents.
  • Longevity: Properly addressing common problems can extend the lifespan of your chainsaw, protecting your investment.

Purpose of the Blog Post

The purpose of this blog post is to empower you with the knowledge and skills necessary to tackle these common issues that may arise with the STIHL MS 310. By the time you finish reading, you’ll have a comprehensive understanding of these chainsaw problems and how to resolve them effectively.

We’ll cover a range of common issues such as starting difficulties, chain-related problems, engine performance issues, oil and fuel system problems, and safety concerns.

Our focus keyword, “STIHL MS 310,” will be seamlessly integrated into the content to enhance its search engine optimization (SEO) value, making it easier for users to find this valuable resource when looking for solutions to their STIHL MS 310 problems.

Chapter 1: Understanding the STIHL MS 310 Chainsaw

In this chapter, we’ll delve into the heart of the matter—getting to know the STIHL MS 310 chainsaw inside and out. Understanding its features, specifications, and the importance of proper maintenance is crucial to ensure you can maximize its efficiency and longevity.

Overview of the STIHL MS 310’s Features and Specifications

Let’s start by exploring what makes the STIHL MS 310 chainsaw a standout in the world of cutting tools. Here are some key features and specifications that set it apart:

  • Engine Power: The STIHL MS 310 boasts an impressive engine that packs a punch. With a substantial engine displacement of 59 ccs, it delivers the raw power needed to tackle a wide range of wood and timber-cutting tasks. Whether you’re a professional logger or a homeowner managing your property, this chainsaw can handle it all.
  • Bar Length Options: The MS 310 is available with various bar lengths, typically ranging from 16 to 25 inches. This flexibility allows you to select the right bar length for your specific cutting requirements, whether it’s trimming small branches or felling large trees.
  • STIHL Rapid™ Super Chain: This chainsaw comes equipped with the renowned STIHL Rapid™ Super chain. Designed for professional use, it ensures precise and efficient cutting while minimizing the risk of kickback for improved safety.
  • Easy Start System: Pulling the starter rope is a breeze with the STIHL MS 310. The easy start system reduces resistance, making it easier to get the engine up and running, saving you time and effort.
  • Anti-Vibration System: For extended use, comfort is crucial. That’s why STIHL has integrated an anti-vibration system into the design of the MS 310. Reduced vibration translates to less operator fatigue, enabling you to work longer without discomfort.

The Significance of Proper Maintenance

Now that you’re familiar with the robust features of the STIHL MS 310, it’s essential to recognize the critical role of maintenance in preserving the chainsaw’s performance and longevity.

Regular maintenance includes tasks such as cleaning, lubrication, and inspection to ensure that all components are functioning as they should.

Proper maintenance offers several advantages:

  • Performance Optimization: Regular upkeep keeps your chainsaw running at peak performance. Clean air filters, sharp chains, and well-maintained bar oils contribute to efficient cutting, saving you time and effort.
  • Safety: Maintaining the safety features and mechanisms of your chainsaw is crucial to prevent accidents. A well-maintained chainsaw is less likely to malfunction, reducing the risk of dangerous incidents.
  • Longevity: Chainsaws can be a significant investment. Proper maintenance can extend the lifespan of your STIHL MS 310, ensuring that it serves you well for years to come.

The Role of the Operator in Preventing Problems

As an operator, your actions play a pivotal role in preventing problems with your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. Here’s how you can contribute to its smooth operation:

  • Follow the User Manual: The user manual provides essential instructions on starting, operating, and maintaining your chainsaw. Familiarize yourself with this document to ensure you’re using the tool correctly.
  • Fuel and Lubrication: Using the right fuel and bar oil in the recommended proportions is crucial. Low-quality fuel or incorrect mixing ratios can lead to starting and engine performance issues.
  • Chain Tension: Regularly check and adjust the chain tension to prevent chain-related problems. A loose chain can derail or cause kickback, compromising both performance and safety.
  • Safety Gear: Always wear the necessary safety gear when operating the chainsaw. This includes a helmet with a face shield, hearing protection, safety gloves, and safety chaps. Safety is paramount in preventing accidents.

Understanding the STIHL MS 310 and the significance of maintenance and operator responsibility is the foundation for addressing and preventing common problems.

In the following chapters, we’ll dive deeper into these common issues and provide step-by-step solutions, to keeping your chainsaw in top-notch condition. Stay tuned for the practical insights and advice you need to tackle these challenges effectively.

Chapter 2: Common Problems with the STIHL MS 310

In this chapter, we’ll explore the common problems that STIHL MS 310 users frequently encounter. Recognizing these issues is the first step towards addressing and preventing them effectively. We’ll cover a wide spectrum of problems, including starting difficulties, chain-related issues, engine performance troubles, oil and fuel system complications, and safety concerns.

Overview of Typical Issues Users Face

Starting Difficulties

Starting difficulties are one of the most commonly reported issues with the STIHL MS 310. These problems may include:

  • Failure to Start: The engine doesn’t ignite, and the chainsaw remains non-operational.
  • Stalling: The engine starts but quickly stalls, making it impossible to perform any cutting tasks.
  • Hard Pulling: The recoil starter is difficult to pull, even with the proper technique.

Potential Causes:

  • Spark Plug Issues: A fouled or damaged spark plug can prevent the engine from starting.
  • Fuel System Problems: Clogged fuel filters, stale fuel, or issues with the carburetor can hinder proper starting.

Ignition System Trouble: Faulty ignition systems may cause intermittent or no spark, preventing ignition.

Chain-Related Problems

Chain-related issues can be a source of frustration and even safety hazards. Common symptoms include:

  • Chain Slippage: The chain may slip off the bar or become loose during operation.
  • Dull Chain: A dull chain can lead to slow cutting, excessive vibration, and overheating.
  • Kickback: Kickback occurs when the chainsaw’s nose suddenly rises, which can be dangerous.

Potential Causes:

  • Improper Chain Tension: Chains that are too loose or too tight can cause problems.
  • Dull Chains: Over time, chains become dull and require regular sharpening.
  • Chain Alignment: Chainsaw chains should be properly aligned with the bar for optimal performance and safety.

Engine Performance Issues

Engine performance problems can affect the cutting efficiency and overall operation of the STIHL MS 310:

  • Loss of Power: The chainsaw doesn’t cut as effectively as it should.
  • Stalling During Operation: The engine may stall while cutting, causing interruptions.
  • Overheating: The engine becomes excessively hot during use.

Potential Causes:

  • Dirty Air Filters: Clogged air filters restrict air intake, affecting the air-fuel mixture.
  • Carburetor Issues: A malfunctioning carburetor can disrupt the fuel-air mixture.
  • Exhaust System Blockage: A blocked exhaust system can lead to overheating and poor performance.

Oil and Fuel System Problems

Proper oil and fuel systems are vital for the smooth operation of your chainsaw. Symptoms of issues in these areas include:

  • Insufficient Lubrication: The chain doesn’t receive adequate lubrication, leading to excessive wear and heat.
  • Leaking Oil: The chainsaw may leak bar and chain oil.
  • Fuel Leaks: Fuel leaks can pose safety hazards and affect engine performance.

Potential Causes:

  • Clogged Oil Pump: A clogged or malfunctioning oil pump may not deliver enough oil to the chain.
  • Damaged Fuel Lines: Cracked or damaged fuel lines can lead to fuel leaks.
  • Fuel Contamination: Contaminated or stale fuel can affect combustion and performance.

Safety Concerns

Safety is paramount when operating a chainsaw. Concerns related to safety include:

  • Kickback: Sudden kickback can cause the chainsaw to jump out of control.
  • Vibration: Excessive vibration can lead to operator fatigue and discomfort.
  • Inadequate Safety Gear: Improper safety gear can leave the operator vulnerable to injuries.

Potential Causes:

  • Inadequate Bar and Chain Lubrication: Insufficient lubrication can lead to overheating and chain-related issues.
  • Worn or Damaged Safety Gear: Helmets, gloves, and chaps should be in good condition to provide adequate protection.
  • Improper Handling: Operator errors, such as incorrect grip or positioning, can result in safety concerns.

Detailed Explanation of Each Problem, its Symptoms, and Potential Causes

In the following sections, we will provide comprehensive insights into each of these common problems with the STIHL MS 310, covering their symptoms, potential causes, and step-by-step solutions. Whether you’re a professional or a homeowner, knowing how to diagnose and address these issues is crucial for the efficient and safe operation of your chainsaw. Stay tuned for practical advice and guidance on resolving these problems effectively.

Chapter 3: Troubleshooting and Solutions

In this pivotal chapter, we dive into the heart of the matter—troubleshooting and solving common problems that STIHL MS 310 users often encounter. To ensure your chainsaw continues to operate smoothly and safely, we’ll provide you with a comprehensive guide to troubleshooting and step-by-step solutions for each of these common problems.

Comprehensive Guide to Troubleshooting

Effective troubleshooting is the key to identifying and resolving issues with your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. To start, we recommend the following systematic approach:

  1. Observe Symptoms: Pay close attention to any unusual behavior, sounds, or performance issues. Understanding the symptoms is the first step in diagnosing the problem.
  2. Check for User Errors: Ensure you’re following proper operation techniques as per the user manual. Operator errors can sometimes mimic equipment problems.
  3. Inspect Key Components: Examine the critical components such as the spark plug, air filter, fuel system, and chain for visible signs of wear or damage.
  4. Perform Diagnostic Tests: If necessary, use diagnostic tests to assess the condition of various systems, such as the ignition, carburetor, and exhaust.
  5. Consult the User Manual: The user manual provides specific guidance for troubleshooting common issues. It’s a valuable resource for resolving problems.
  6. Seek Professional Help: If you’re unsure about any aspect of troubleshooting, or if the problem seems complex, consider seeking assistance from a qualified STIHL technician.

Now, let’s move on to the step-by-step solutions for each of the five common problems.

Step-by-Step Solutions for Each Common Problem

1. Starting Difficulties

a. Checking Spark Plug and Ignition System


  • The engine doesn’t start
  • No spark when pulling the starter rope
  • Irregular engine ignition

Potential Causes:

  • Fouled or damaged spark plug
  • Faulty ignition module
  • Loose or damaged ignition wires

Step 1: Spark Plug Inspection

  • Remove the spark plug and examine its condition.
  • If fouled or damaged, replace it with a suitable replacement.
  • Check the spark plug gap and set it to the manufacturer’s specifications if needed.

Step 2: Ignition System Check

  • Inspect the ignition module for visible damage or loose connections.
  • Ensure the ignition wires are securely connected.
  • If the ignition system is damaged or malfunctioning, consult a professional for repairs.

b. Fuel System Inspection


  • Starting difficulties
  • Stalling shortly after ignition
  • Hard starting

Potential Causes:

  • Clogged fuel filter
  • Stale or contaminated fuel
  • Carburetor issues

Step 1: Fuel Filter Inspection

  • Examine the fuel filter for blockages or dirt.
  • If clogged, replace the filter with a new one.

Step 2: Fuel Quality Check

  • Ensure you’re using fresh, high-quality fuel with the correct oil-to-fuel ratio.
  • If the fuel is stale or contaminated, drain the tank and refill it with fresh fuel.

Step 3: Carburetor Inspection

  • If the problem persists, it may be due to carburetor issues. Consult a professional for carburetor maintenance or adjustments.

2. Chain-Related Problems

a. Chain Tension and Sharpness


  • The chain slipping off the bar
  • Poor cutting performance
  • Increased vibration

Potential Causes:

  • Incorrect chain tension
  • Dull chain
  • Worn-out sprocket

Step 1: Chain Tension Adjustment

  • Refer to your user manual for the correct chain tension specifications.
  • Adjust the chain tension to within the recommended range.
  • Ensure the chain can move freely but without slack.

Step 2: Chain Sharpness

  • Regularly sharpen the chain using a suitable file and guide to maintain its sharpness.

b. Sprocket Maintenance

  • Symptoms:
  • Chain slipping off the sprocket
  • Chain binding or jumping during operation

Potential Causes:

  • Worn-out or damaged sprocket

Step 1: Sprocket Inspection

  • Examine the sprocket for wear, damage, or loose parts.
  • If the sprocket is worn or damaged, replace it with a new one as per the manufacturer’s recommendations.

In the upcoming sections, we’ll continue to address problems related to engine performance, oil and fuel systems, and safety concerns with your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. Stay tuned for comprehensive solutions to keep your chainsaw running smoothly and safely.

Chapter 4: Maintenance Tips for Preventing Future Problems

In this chapter, we focus on the proactive steps you can take to prevent future problems with your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. Regular maintenance is the key to keeping your chainsaw in optimal condition, enhancing its lifespan, and ensuring consistent performance. We’ll explore the importance of regular maintenance, outline routine checks and maintenance schedules, and discuss best practices for storage and winterization.

The Importance of Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance is the cornerstone of keeping your STIHL MS 310 in top-notch shape. Here’s why it’s essential:

  • Performance Optimization: Routine maintenance ensures your chainsaw operates at its peak performance, allowing you to cut through wood more efficiently, saving time and effort.
  • Safety: Well-maintained chainsaws are less likely to malfunction, reducing the risk of dangerous incidents, and ensuring a safer working environment.
  • Longevity: A STIHL MS 310 chainsaw is an investment. Proper maintenance extends its lifespan, protecting your investment and preventing costly repairs or replacements.

Routine Checks and Maintenance Schedule

To ensure your chainsaw functions smoothly, you need to establish a routine maintenance schedule. Here are some of the essential checks and the recommended frequency:

  1. Chain Tension: Check and adjust chain tension as needed, usually before each use or after refueling. Proper tension ensures safe and efficient cutting.
  2. Chain Sharpness: Regularly sharpen the chain to maintain optimal cutting performance. The frequency depends on usage but typically ranges from every few hours to once a day of continuous use.
  3. Air Filter: Clean or replace the air filter after every five hours of operation or more frequently in dusty conditions. A clean air filter improves engine performance.
  4. Bar Oil: Check the bar oil level before each use. Top it up as needed to ensure the chain is properly lubricated during cutting.
  5. Spark Plug: Inspect and clean the spark plug every 25 hours of operation. Replace it if it’s fouled or damaged.
  6. Fuel Filter: Regularly inspect the fuel filter and replace it every 100 hours of operation or annually, whichever comes first.
  7. Fuel System: Periodically inspect the fuel lines and tank for damage or contamination. Address any issues immediately.
  8. Sprocket: Check the sprocket for wear and damage, especially after extended use. Replace as needed.
  9. Exhaust System: Inspect the exhaust system for blockages or damage, and address any issues promptly.

Best Practices for Storage and Winterization

Proper storage and winterization are crucial to maintaining the integrity of your STIHL MS 310 during periods of inactivity or seasonal changes. Here are some best practices:

  • Clean Your Chainsaw: Before storing your chainsaw, clean it thoroughly. Remove all dirt, oil, and debris to prevent any corrosion or damage during storage.
  • Empty the Fuel Tank: If you won’t be using the chainsaw for an extended period, drain the fuel tank to prevent stale fuel or varnish formation.
  • Lubrication: Lubricate the sprocket and other moving parts with the appropriate lubricants.
  • Store in a Dry Place: Store your chainsaw in a dry, cool place away from direct sunlight. Use a cover to protect it from dust and moisture.
  • Winterization: If you anticipate winter storage, ensure your chainsaw is winterized. This may involve additional steps such as draining the oil tank and protecting the bar and chain.

By following these maintenance tips and best practices, you can prevent future problems with your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw and enjoy its reliable performance and longevity. Proactive maintenance not only saves you time and money but also ensures safe and efficient operation. In the next chapter, we’ll discuss when it’s essential to seek professional help, should you encounter more complex issues with your chainsaw. Stay tuned for more insights.

Chapter 5: When to Seek Professional Help

In this chapter, we explore the critical factors to consider when deciding to seek professional assistance with your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. Knowing your limitations as a user, recognizing indications that it’s time to consult a professional, and understanding how to find a qualified STIHL technician are key aspects of maintaining your chainsaw’s performance and safety.

Knowing Your Limitations as a User

As an operator of the STIHL MS 310 chainsaw, it’s important to acknowledge your skills and limitations. Knowing your own expertise and experience level is the first step in deciding when to seek professional help. Here are some considerations:

  • Experience: Are you an experienced chainsaw user, or is this your first time operating one? Experience plays a significant role in addressing and diagnosing issues.
  • Tools and Equipment: Do you have the necessary tools and equipment for troubleshooting and repair? Without the right tools, some tasks may be difficult or unsafe to perform.
  • Confidence: How comfortable are you with the maintenance and repair processes? Confidence in your abilities is important for tackling problems effectively.
  • User Manual: Always consult the user manual for guidance. If you find the instructions too complex or beyond your capabilities, it’s time to consider professional help.

Indications That It’s Time to Consult a Professional

Recognizing when it’s necessary to seek professional assistance can prevent further damage to your chainsaw and ensure your safety. Here are some clear indications that it’s time to consult a qualified STIHL technician:

  1. Complex Issues: When you encounter complex problems that you don’t fully understand or have the tools to address, it’s wise to seek professional assistance. This includes issues with the internal engine components, ignition system, or major structural damage.
  2. Persistent Problems: If you’ve attempted troubleshooting and maintenance, but the problem persists or returns shortly after being resolved, it’s a sign that there may be an underlying issue requiring professional attention.
  3. Safety Concerns: Safety is paramount when operating a chainsaw. If you encounter safety-related problems, such as severe kickback, unusual vibrations, or concerns with the chainsaw’s safety mechanisms, consult a professional immediately.
  4. Warranty Considerations: If your STIHL MS 310 is under warranty, attempting major repairs or modifications on your own may void the warranty. Consult the manufacturer or an authorized technician to maintain your warranty coverage.
  5. Time and Expertise: If you lack the time or expertise to perform complex maintenance or repairs, seeking professional assistance can save you time and ensure the job is done correctly.

How to Find a Qualified STIHL Technician

When the need arises, it’s essential to find a qualified STIHL technician who can address the issues with your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. Here’s how to locate the right professional:

  1. Authorized STIHL Dealers: Visit your local authorized STIHL dealer or distributor. They typically employ certified technicians who specialize in STIHL chainsaw repairs and maintenance.
  2. Online Resources: The official STIHL website offers a dealer locator tool that can help you find authorized service centers near you. You can enter your location to find the closest technicians.
  3. Word of Mouth: Seek recommendations from fellow chainsaw users or professionals who may have experience with STIHL chainsaw repairs. Personal recommendations can be valuable in finding a trustworthy technician.
  4. Check for Certification: Ensure the technician is certified by STIHL. This certification demonstrates their expertise and knowledge of STIHL products.
  5. Customer Reviews: Look for online customer reviews and testimonials to gain insight into the reputation and service quality of the technician or service center you’re considering.

Remember, seeking professional help ensures that your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw receives the necessary care, repairs, and maintenance from experts who understand the intricacies of the equipment. It’s a proactive step to keep your chainsaw in top-notch condition and maintain its safety and efficiency.

In this chapter, we’ve covered all the essential aspects of addressing and preventing problems with your chainsaw. By knowing your limitations, recognizing when to seek professional help, and finding the right technician, you can keep your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw in optimal working order for years to come. Thank you for reading this comprehensive guide, and we hope it serves you well in your chainsaw maintenance and operation.


In conclusion, this comprehensive guide has equipped you with the knowledge and skills to maintain, troubleshoot, and optimize the performance of your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw. We’ve covered a wide range of topics, from understanding the chainsaw’s features and common problems to providing step-by-step solutions and maintenance tips.

By following the guidance in this guide, you can keep your chainsaw running smoothly, ensure safety, and extend its lifespan. Whether you’re a professional user or a homeowner, the ability to address and prevent common problems is a valuable skill.

Safety always comes first when using a chainsaw. Proper safety gear, adherence to operational guidelines, and regular maintenance are essential for your well-being. Remember to consult the user manual for specific instructions.

We appreciate your time and hope this guide serves as a valuable resource for your chainsaw maintenance and operation needs. With regular upkeep, safety in mind, and knowing when to seek professional help, your STIHL MS 310 chainsaw will continue to be a reliable tool for all your cutting tasks. Thank you for reading, and best of luck with your chainsaw adventures.

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