Even though a log splitter is designed to help you cut through wood fast and easy, it can be a dangerous power tool if not well handled. How do you make the most out of a wood splitter without hurting yourself? How do you safely use a log splitter irrespective of the cutting position? These are some of the questions that should be lingering in your mind every time you set out to split wood, whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned operator.
To help you get through the task safely, here are some important pointers that you should always take note.
Before You Start Splitting Wood
Make Sure that You Know Your Equipment – Before you even start using your machine, you need to get well acquainted with what it can do. Make sure you know where important features and buttons are located. That way, you can bring the wood splitter to a halt quickly if need be (REFER TO OWNERS HAND BOOK)
Know the Type of Wood You’re About to Split – While the best wood splitter should handle a wide variety of wood, you should at the very least have an idea of what to expect with the type of wood you’re cutting. If the wood isn’t straight grained, for instance, it will most probably split irregularly. Knowing the kind of wood will help to take any necessary caution beforehand.
Wear the Right Clothing – Be sure to wear protective clothing before undertaking the splitting task. Avoid loose fitting clothing or jewelry. Instead, go with snug fitting, comfortable clothes, and goggles as well as gloves. While you’re at it, make sure that you wear protective, non-skid shoes. Never split wood while wearing sandals or barefoot.
When Loading Logs onto Your Log Splitter
Place your hands on the sides of the logs and not the end as you lift the wood. Also, avoid using your foot to stabilize the wood. Why is it important to follow this safety tip? Placing the wood on your machine using any other method may increase the probability that the log may slip off and crush your finger, toes or feet.
Securing the Operating Area
By now you’re ready to start splitting the wood. But, even before you start splitting, it is essential to mention that if you’re using an electric or petrol wood splitter you need to make sure that the ground is stable and flat. The stability of your machine is critical to preventing injuries.
When Using the Log Splitter
To safely use a log splitter here are the precautionary measures you need to keep in mind.
- Operate the splitter controls with your hands only
- Split a single piece of wood at a time. In case the ram has been fully extended, you will require a second log so as to complete the separation of a second log. That’s the only time you can place more than one log on your machine
- When splitting wood that is not cut squarely, ensure that the longest bit of the log is inside the splitter and the square side at the end plate.
If you’re splitting the wood in a vertical position,
- Stabilize the wood before placing it on the splitter.
- Place the log on the end plate and keep turning it unit the log is stable against the beam
- Be sure to stabilize your machine by placing wood chips between the logs and end plate or the ground especially if you’re splitting large, extra large or uneven logs.
Most wood splitters come with safety features such as automatic shut-off to ensure that the chances of getting hurt are reduced to the bare minimum. However, it is important to remember that if you want to safely use a log splitter, you need to be cautious from every angle. Just like any other machine, you never know when an accident will happen and if you’re well prepared for any eventualities, the intensity of damage caused will be significantly reduced.