How to Remove Stumps With a Chain Saw

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Things You'll Need

  • Safety goggles

  • Gloves

  • Steel-toed boots

  • Pants

  • Long-sleeved shirt

  • Chain saw

  • Landscape bar

  • Trowel


Cutting a series of slashes into a stump cut low to the ground will accelerate the rotting process by allowing more air and moisture into the body of the stump.


This should not be your first chain saw project. If you are not comfortable with this tool, do not start out by removing stumps with it.

Image Credit: Jupiterimages/ Images

When you cut trees down, you will be left with stumps. There are a variety of ways to get rid of tree stumps, but many of them take time and rely on nature to remove the stump for you. If you are in a hurry and do not want to wait several months, then the chain saw option may be appealing to you. Just be sure that you do it a day or two after it rains so that the soil is damp and does not clamp the stump into the soil.

Step 1

Put on your safety equipment. Since you will be using the chain saw in and around the ground, there is a high likelihood of flying debris. You should wear long pants and sleeves, steel-toed boots, gloves and safety goggles at all times.

Step 2

Cut the stump off as close to the ground as possible. If necessary, remove any remaining limbs that may have escaped when the tree was cut down. Be careful so that the chain saw does not bounce back at you when you are cutting close to the ground. Move slowly and use firm pressure.

Step 3

Remove the dirt from around the stump. Use the trowel. You will need to expose all the roots, so you may end up digging several feet out from around the stump and a good 18 inches down.

Step 4

Cut through the roots. You can use the chain saw for this part, but be very careful since you will potentially be digging into the dirt with it. This can quickly dull the blade. Do your best to remove the dirt from around the roots before you start cutting.

Step 5

Pry out the stump. Use the landscape bar to pry the stump out of the ground. Now that there are no roots holding it in place, you should be able to work it loose. If you spot an uncut root, then cut it with the chain saw. If necessary, loosen more dirt around the stump to make it easier to remove. With patience, it will eventually dislodge and come out.