STIHL 251 Chainsaw Review


When my girlfriend surprised me with the STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss Chainsaw, I knew my days of struggling with yard work were over. Here’s a detailed review based on my personal experience with this impressive tool.


GUIDE BAR LENGTH (Recommended)18 in.

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Initial Impressions

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Initial Impressions

Right out of the box, the MS 251 Wood Boss felt like a significant upgrade. Its build quality and ergonomic design were evident. Weighing in at 11.0 lbs and equipped with an 18-inch guide bar, it felt substantial yet manageable. The .325″ RM3 OILOMATIC chain promised precision, and I couldn’t wait to see it in action.

If you’re still a newbie and don’t know how to mount the bar and chain, Check it out here!

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Performance in Action

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Performance in Action

The true test came as I confronted the dying tree in my backyard, shedding limbs and demanding attention. The 45.6 cc motor and the balanced weight of the chainsaw made the cutting work almost effortless. The fuel capacity of 13.2 oz and chain oil capacity of 6.7 oz meant I could work longer without interruptions. Transitioning from my old Husqvarna, I immediately noticed the difference. The STIHL MS 251 was more than just a tool; it was a reliable partner, significantly reducing my fatigue and making the task at hand feel less strenuous.

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Ease of Use

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Ease of Use

Adapting to the controls was intuitive. The safety switch and the Master Control Lever were straightforward, enhancing the chainsaw’s safety and usability. Starting the chainsaw, whether cold or warm, was a breeze. The clear instructions and responsive design meant I spent less time fiddling with the machine and more time tackling the wood.


  • The MS 251 delivers all the cutting power I need without the bulk. It’s perfect for cutting firewood and managing yard cleanup efficiently.
  • Its ergonomic design and low vibration make it comfortable to use for extended periods. I can say goodbye to the usual arm fatigue associated with chainsaws.
  • With reduced emissions and fuel savings, it’s a chainsaw that lets me do my part for the environment while taking care of my yard.
  • The Master Control Lever and easy-to-use safety features make operating the MS 251 straightforward and secure, even for someone relatively new to chainsaws.


  • While the controls are intuitive, it took me a little time to get completely comfortable with the Master Control Lever and the starting procedure.
  • While it’s a powerhouse for its size, the MS 251 might not be the best choice for felling large trees. It’s more suited to medium-scale tasks like cutting firewood and managing smaller trees.

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Fuel Efficiency and Maintenance

STIHL 251 Chainsaw Fuel Efficiency and Maintenance

The chainsaw’s 50 to 1 fuel-to-oil ratio, complemented by the recommended STIHL oil, ensured efficient operation and longevity. Refueling and oiling were hassle-free, thanks to the user-friendly caps that were easy to open and close, even when wearing gloves.

Don’t know how to fill up chain oil and fuel mixture? Check it out here!

Maintenance of STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss

Maintaining your STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss Chainsaw is essential to ensure its longevity and optimal performance. Here’s how you can keep your chainsaw in top condition:

  • Daily Maintenance Tasks: Start by inspecting your chainsaw each day before use. Check for any loose, damaged, or missing parts and ensure that the throttle trigger, throttle interlock, and stop switch are functioning correctly. Cleaning the saw is also crucial; remove any debris from the chainsaw body, air inlets, and chain sprocket area, and wipe down the chainsaw to prevent the build-up of sap or resin. The chain tension should be checked to ensure it’s snug but still able to rotate freely around the bar, adjusting as necessary. Additionally, the chain and guide bar need regular inspection and cleaning to ensure smooth operation and proper lubrication, and fuel and chain oil levels should be checked and refilled as needed.
  • Weekly Maintenance Tasks: On a weekly basis, take the time to clean the air filter using a soft brush or by tapping it gently, and if it’s extremely dirty, wash it in warm soapy water, rinse thoroughly, and allow it to dry completely before reinstalling. The spark plug should be removed, inspected for carbon build-up and electrode wear, and cleaned or replaced if necessary. The starter mechanism should also be checked to ensure that the recoil starter functions correctly and that the starter rope retracts properly. Lastly, inspect the muffler and spark arrestor for carbon build-up, clean as needed, and replace the spark arrestor screen if it’s damaged.
  • Monthly Maintenance Tasks: Monthly maintenance includes checking the fuel system for clogs, damage, or leaks in the fuel lines, fuel filter, and tank vent, and replacing any worn or damaged parts as necessary. It’s also important to inspect the anti-vibration system for wear or damage and replace any compromised elements to ensure comfortable operation. If your guide bar has a sprocket tip, make sure it’s well-lubricated to reduce wear and ensure smooth chain movement. Finally, check that the chain brake is engaging and disengaging properly, and look for wear, replacing any worn components as needed.

By following these maintenance routines, you ensure that your STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss Chainsaw remains a reliable and efficient tool for all your woodcutting needs. Always refer to your chainsaw’s user manual for specific instructions and safety guidelines.

Final Thoughts

After thoroughly using and assessing the STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss, I can confidently say that it stands as a hallmark of STIHL’s dedication to delivering high-quality, dependable tools. This chainsaw isn’t just a standard piece of equipment; it’s a fusion of power, efficiency, and ergonomic design, all geared toward enhancing the user’s experience. Whether you’re facing routine yard work or tackling more challenging woodcutting tasks, the MS 251 Wood Boss has consistently shown that it’s up to the task, performing reliably every time.

STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss

Given its robust performance, user-friendly features, and the sheer comfort it offers during operation, I wholeheartedly recommend the STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss. It’s more than a mere purchase. Investing in this chainsaw means equipping yourself with a tool that doesn’t just meet expectations but exceeds them, providing dependable service that you can count on, time and time again. If you’re in the market for a chainsaw that offers a blend of power, precision, and durability, the STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss should undoubtedly be at the top of your list.


  1. How does the STIHL MS 251 Wood Boss Chainsaw handle prolonged use?
    From my experience, the MS 251 is designed for endurance. Its ergonomic design and balanced weight distribution minimize fatigue, making it suitable for longer cutting sessions without discomfort.
  2. What maintenance routines should I follow to keep my STIHL MS 251 in optimal condition? Regular maintenance should include checking and adjusting the chain tension, cleaning the air filter, ensuring proper fuel-to-oil ratio for refueling, and periodically inspecting the spark plug and the guide bar for wear and tear.
  3. How user-friendly are the controls and safety features of the MS 251?
    The controls are intuitive, especially the Master Control Lever, which simplifies the startup process. The safety switch and the chain brake are easily accessible, adding an extra layer of safety during operation.
  4. Is the STIHL MS 251 suitable for heavy-duty tasks like felling large trees?
    While the MS 251 is robust and reliable, it’s optimally designed for tasks like firewood cutting, pruning, thinning, and felling small trees. For larger trees, you might want to consider a chainsaw with a larger displacement and guide bar length.
  5. How does the fuel efficiency of the STIHL MS 251 compare to other chainsaws in the market?
    The MS 251 is designed with fuel efficiency in mind. It offers up to 20 percent fuel savings and 50 percent reduced emissions compared to previous models, making it an environmentally friendly and cost-effective option.

Join the discussion below by sharing your experiences, tips, or reviews. Your contributions help others make informed decisions and navigate their chainsaw choices with confidence. Let’s build a community of shared knowledge for all wood-cutting enthusiasts!

David Murray
David Murray
Forestry Author

I'm David Murry, a forestry equipment specialist with a focus on chainsaw operation. With over 13 years of experience, I've honed my skills in operating and maintaining a wide range of machinery, from chainsaws to log splitters. My passion for the outdoors and commitment to sustainable forestry drive my work, which emphasizes safety, efficiency, and staying updated with industry advancements. Additionally, I'm dedicated to sharing my expertise and promoting environmental awareness within the forestry community.


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