How To Adjust The Carb On A Poulan Chainsaw

How to Adjust the Carb on a Poulan Chainsaw

If you own a Poulan chainsaw, it’s important to keep the carburetor properly adjusted to ensure optimal performance. The carburetor is responsible for mixing fuel and air in the correct ratio and delivering it to the engine. Over time, the carburetor may become out of tune or clogged, leading to poor engine performance or starting issues. In this article, we will guide you through the process of adjusting the carburetor on your Poulan chainsaw, helping you get it running smoothly again.

Gather the Tools

Before you start adjusting the carburetor, make sure you have the necessary tools at hand. You will need a flathead screwdriver, a Phillips head screwdriver, and a tachometer. The tachometer is crucial for setting the idle speed accurately. If you don’t have a tachometer, consider purchasing or borrowing one from a friend or local store.

Locate the Adjustment Screws

To adjust the carburetor on your Poulan chainsaw, you first need to locate the three adjustment screws. These screws are typically labeled as “L,” “H,” and “T.” The “L” screw is responsible for adjusting the low-speed fuel mixture, the “H” screw controls the high-speed fuel mixture, and the “T” screw controls the idle speed.

Start with Adjusting the Low-Speed Mixture

To begin adjusting the carburetor, start by turning the “L” screw clockwise until it stops. Then, turn it counterclockwise one and a half turns. This is a good starting point for most Poulan chainsaws. However, if you know your saw’s initial settings, it’s always best to start from there.

With the initial setting in place, it’s time to fine-tune the low-speed mixture. Start the saw and let it warm up for a few minutes. While the engine is running at idle, slowly turn the “L” screw clockwise and counterclockwise. Find the point where the engine runs smoothly and sounds its best. This indicates the correct low-speed fuel mixture. Fine-tune by making incremental adjustments until you achieve optimal performance.

Adjusting the High-Speed Mixture

Once you have adjusted the low-speed mixture, it’s time to move on to the high-speed mixture adjustment. Start by revving up the saw’s engine to the maximum speed. Use the tachometer to ensure it’s within the manufacturer’s recommended range. Now, turn the “H” screw clockwise and counterclockwise until you find the point where the saw runs smoothly without any hesitation or surging at the top RPM.

It’s important to note that the high-speed mixture is very sensitive, so make small adjustments to avoid damaging the engine. Additionally, always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions and adjust the carburetor within the recommended specifications for your specific Poulan chainsaw model.

Setting the Idle Speed

After adjusting the fuel mixture, it’s time to set the idle speed of your Poulan chainsaw. Start by engaging the chain brake and let the engine idle. Use the tachometer to determine if the idle speed is within the recommended range specified in the manual. If not, locate the “T” screw and turn it clockwise or counterclockwise to increase or decrease the idle speed until it is at the optimal level.

It’s crucial to set the idle speed correctly, as a too low idle can cause stalling, while a too high idle can be dangerous and damage the chain or other components of the saw.

Perform a Final Test

Once you have adjusted the carburetor, it’s essential to test the saw’s performance. Start the chainsaw and check if it starts easily, idles smoothly, and accelerates without any hesitation. Additionally, observe the exhaust smoke. If it appears excessively black or white, it might indicate an incorrect fuel mixture, and further adjustments might be necessary.

Remember that adjusting the carburetor may take some trial and error, and the optimal settings can vary depending on factors such as altitude, fuel quality, and specific model. If you’re unsure or encounter difficulties, it’s always recommended to consult the Poulan chainsaw’s manual or seek assistance from a professional.


Adjusting the carburetor of your Poulan chainsaw can help restore its performance and ensure smooth operation. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can fine-tune the low-speed and high-speed fuel mixture as well as set the idle speed correctly. Remember to use the appropriate tools, be patient, and make small adjustments to achieve the best results. With a well-adjusted carburetor, your Poulan chainsaw will be ready to tackle any cutting task with ease and efficiency.

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