With a wood-fired stove at home or in your cabin, you’ll find yourself splitting wood a couple of times a season. But even as necessary as this task is, it is back-breaking labor that can take a full day and leave you with an assortment of blisters. Even experienced woodsmen need a way to work smarter, not harder. Thankfully, modern innovation comes through once again, providing you an opportunity to purchase a gas-powered log splitter.
These machines are packed with the power of a full team of log splitters that never grow tired and never need breaks. In addition, these powerful machines can split wood with several tons of force at a time – far, far beyond what a human along is capable of. With purpose-built efficiency, these motorized splitters are also able to use a minimal amount of fuel in order to attain the maximum result.
Table of Contents
- Best Gas Log Splitter – Comparison
- 6 Best Gas Log Splitters for Wood Stove Owners
Best Gas Log Splitter – Comparison
|Champion Compact Horizontal|
|Champion Power Equipment|
When you get down to it, a gas log splitter represents a considerable financial investment, well beyond that of an average axe. But in return for the considerable price tag, you get all-metal durability and the capacity to split entire trees worth of wood in just a few hours. Even if you only use it a few times a year to clean up downed trees, a gas log splitter will pay for itself in all the time and effort you will save.
When it comes to building and maintaining a considerable split wood pile, a gas log splitter is the only way to go. But with that conclusion made, an important question remains: which model is the best gas log splitter? That question can be hard to answer on your own, but luckily you have an expert in your corner. I’ve taken the time to test some of these industry-leading models and compiled my findings into this review of the top 6 best gas log splitters of 2021.
Whether you’re planning to wheel your log splitter out every week or just a couple times a year, you’ll be happy to have its mechanized assistance when your hands don’t ache by sundown. While you don’t have to get rid of your old axe, you’ll be more than happy to leave it in the shed when it’s time to get some serious chopping done with your new gas log splitter.
6 Best Gas Log Splitters for Wood Stove Owners
While gas log splitters may look all the same when placed side by side, they have a fair number of differentiated specifications and special features under the hood that set each apart. The following top 6 gas log splitters are the best of the best in their field, providing outstanding durability, splitting power, portability, and so much more.
Even though nearly every gas log splitter purchase represents an investment, each of these listed models is also affordably priced. Between a great price tag and a fantastic feature portfolio, you’re almost certain to find the gas log splitter that was made to fit your precise needs on this list.
1. Champion 7-Ton Compact Horizontal Gas Log Splitter
The Champion 7-Ton Compact Horizontal Gas Log can fit almost every wood splitter’s needs, providing a solid standard of splitting performance without running you over budget. At the same time, this model is packed with some considerable durability that will ensure that it remains reliable no matter how much you use it season after season.
Much of the Champion 7-Ton’s splitting capability derives from its 196cc Champion OHV engine. Champion engines are among the best in the industry and even this small-grade model packs a powerful 3000 PSI punch that doesn’t waste even a drop of fuel. Speaking of fuel, this model’s 0.4-gallon tank is plenty large enough to accommodate continuous splitting for several hours before you’ll need to top it off.
In terms of wrought power, the Champion 7-Ton can chop through logs 19 in. long and up to 50 lbs. in weight. While this may not feel like a high threshold, that capacity was more than enough to make quick work of logs from even some of the heftiest oaks and pines on my property. Loading those logs onto the Champion 7-Ton wasn’t a big deal either, given its easy loading low profile.
As noted, durability is another reason to really appreciate this model. Every inch of the Champion 7-Ton is coated in a chemical resistant paint that easily reflects saltwater, mild acids, and mild bases. This can really extend the life of the full device by preventing rust from taking hold of the frame. This model’s hydraulic cylinder is also air-cooled, allowing it to persevere through hours of work without warping and bending.
Given that the wedge on any gas wood splitter is bound to take the brunt of the pressure, it’s good that the Champion 7-Ton wedge is built from sturdy hardened steel. This wedge is even unique in so far as that it is skewed to allow for a more angular cut that tears with the wood grain.
As the most affordably priced model in the bunch, I can definitely recommend the Champion 7-Ton for those with minimal log splitting needs.
- Powered by a 196cc Champion OHV engine
- Chemical resistant exterior
- Maximum pressure up to 3000 psi applied on hardened steel wedge
- Low profile for easy loading
- Handles logs 19 in. in length and 50 lb. in weight
- Maybe missing pieces on arrival
- Difficult to contact the service center
2. Champion 25-Ton Horizontal/Vertical Full Beam
The Champion 25-Ton Horizontal/Vertical Full Beam Gas Log Splitter is a definite upgrade for anyone with a considerable log splitting demand and an interest in adding some versatility to their log splitting procedure. This model additionally comes with all of the durability and reliability that you’ve come to expect from Champion products.
As its name suggests, the Champion 25-Ton’s prime capabilities are focused upon its 25 tons of splitting capacity. That was more than enough to cleave through even some of the toughest hardwoods in my lumber pile, such as one particularly troublesome hunk of black walnut that I simply couldn’t split with my trusted axe.
That being said, this model can handle logs up to 24 in. long and up to a weight of 100 lbs. All of this is powered by a large 224 cc Champion single-cylinder OHV engine that is as easy to maintain as it is powerful. At regular capacity, this engine only pulls enough fuel from the 0.9-gallon tank to require filling after a full day of log splitting.
As noted, versatility really powers the Champion 25-Tonto full success out in the field. While some models can only operate in a vertical or horizontal arrangement, this model can do both and still turn out its promised level of performance. I especially made use of this to load logs in horizontal mode before flipping the vertical mode for a satisfying split.
The Champion 25-Ton’s auto-return is also worth noting because it saves a great deal of time when you have a whole pile of logs to split. This feature draws back the striking head without the need for manual action, allowing you to operate this device without ever placing your hands in harm’s way. For this reason and many more, I highly recommend the Champion 25-Ton for use at home, at the cabin, or on the job site.
- 25 tons of splitting capacity
- Converts from horizontal to vertical orientation
- Towable on most ATVs at up to 45 mph
- 9-gallon fuel tank
- Lacks a hydraulic oil filter
3. Champion Power Equipment 27 Ton 224cc
When your wood splitting needs far outstrip the capabilities of your team or you alone, it’s time to bring in the big guns. Next time you arrive at the job site, be sure to have the Champion Power Equipment 27 Ton 224cc Log Splitter in tow. Not only does this model transport well, but it also manages to hold its own against nearly any log or wood type you throw at it.
While this model is designed to handle 24 in./100lbs. logs like smaller models in its class, the Champion 27 Ton, in particular, is engineered for a diet of hardwoods. That means that both the wedge and striking head have been reinforced and shaped to fully pull apart these most troublesome hunks of wood. I even threw a chunk of black cherry into this model and the reinforced striking head pulled through it like a hot knife through butter.
This 27 tons of splitting capacity is powered by an internal 224cc Champion single-cylinder OHV engine. These engines are noticeably more reliable than the competition and, in my experience, are less likely to break down under the heat and pressure of a busy day of log splitting. This engine won’t get in the way of this model’s versatility, either, allowing it to seamlessly convert between vertical and horizontal orientations in minutes.
The Champion 27 Ton’s 11-second cycle time is definitely among the best in its class, allowing its built-in auto-return feature to remain reliable where other models fall flat. With that amount of speed, you can reach up to 300 cycles per hour.
Even after you’ve split a log between this model, you won’t have to reach into the action zone. Instead, you’ll be able to comfortably and safely retrieve your split logs from the handy log catcher.
Because of this model’s size and weight, towing capability is a must. The good news is that the Champion 27 Ton rolls as smooth as ever at up to 45 MPH. With 2 in. ball hitch coupler, you’ll even be able to tow this log splitter around with your ATV. This model’s 16 in. tires were also some of the most durable I have seen, allowing it to tackle hard terrain without trouble
Altogether, the Champion 27 Ton really impressed me and would immediately become my choice if I had to take on an industrial quantity of logs.
- 27 tons of splitting capacity
- Ideal for splitting hardwoods
- 2 in. ball hitch coupler fits most ATVs
- Extra durable 16 in. tires
- Come unassembled if purchased online
3. Southland Outdoor Power Equipment SLS20825
The Southland Outdoor Power Equipment SLS20825 25 Ton Gas Powered Log Splitter is a little out of the ordinary, but this standout nature is entire to your advantage and gain. This model can really expand its own lifespan through built-in protections while still providing a fairly consistent level of splitting capability. For what it’s worth, I would likely select this model to replace my own log splitter if it ever came to it.
Much of this model’s splitting capability rests squarely in its 208cc Southland OHV gas engine. This engine has more than enough drive to see nearly every softwood and hardwood log torn asunder as soon as you initiate the machine. This model is advertised to handle logs up to 26 in. in length, which I found to be true. I was unable to discern a weight limit though, so be sure to take it easy if you decide to buy this model.
The Southland SLS20825’s 25-ton splitting capacity puts it in the upper echelons of log splitting ability, right alongside industrial-strength models. Even so, it is able to remain durable and reliable thanks to its built-in self-preservation features.
One of the most noteworthy of these features is the specialized oil delivery system. This system provides extra lubrication to the engine while in motion to reduce the chance of heat build-up. This kind of hot pocket can warp metal engine components in time, so this model’s lifespan can extend well beyond others in its class because it mitigates such harmful after effects.
I also must mention the unique heat-treated splitting wedge on the Southland SLS20825. Though it looks like every other splitting wedge, this one, in particular, has been coated with a heat-resistant paint that can minimize friction and reduce the chance of the wedge become dangerously smooth or degraded down the road.
The Southland SLS20825’s 3-2-1 warranty is also the best in the business, making it a surefire investment. With coverage on every part of this machine for the first several years, you can be sure that every dollar you spend on it will be returned to you in piles of well-split wood and a well-rested body.
- Specialized oil delivery system minimizes heat build-up
- 2-inch hitch for easy transport
- 8 in. heat-treated splitting wedge splits logs up to 26 in.
- 3-2-1 warranty on the steel frame, engine, and hydraulics
- Unknown weight limit
5. WEN 56222 Lumberjack Gas-Powered Log Splitter
While most of these gas-powered log splitters can put in a good day’s work, they nearly all require gas refills once a day, if not more. That’s not due to gas inefficiency; rather, that need to constantly refill is caused by the often tiny gas tanks that come pre-installed. If you’re looking to break from that trend, then the WEN 56222 Lumberjack Gas-Powered Log Splitter and its 1-gallon gas tank will be a sure choice for you.
In addition, the WEN 56222’s filtering system (which comes pre-installed) is mounted onto the body such that it can be readily accessed. That makes this model one of the easiest to maintain in the bunch. That level of easy maintenance will be crucial, too, as you keep this model’s 12cc engine and a 4 x 24 in. hydraulic cylinder in tip-top shape.
Combined, both of those components can whip out up to 22 tons of force, which is a pretty solid standard when aligned with all of this model’s other key specs. That amount of force is certified to split logs up to 14 in. in diameter and 25 in. in length. I can independently confirm that this model can handle logs up to that size and in some cases (such as for a softwood log), just a little larger.
As with other gas log splitters, the wedge plays a surprisingly important role on the WEN 56222. In this case, its 7-inch heat-treated steel body remains firm and unchipped in the face of load after a load of dense logs. In fact, out of all of these models, I found this wedge to show the least amount of wear after I put it through its paces.
While I generally use a wood splitter at home, you may need to take yours to the job site every now and then. If that’s the case, then you’ll be happy to know that the WEN 56222 is fully Department of Transportation-certified in most states for highway travel. With pre-installed chains and trailer coupler, you’ll even be able to travel with this model in tow up to 45 mph.
Altogether, the WEN 56222 is a worthwhile option for log splitting if you’re looking for a solid chopping capacity with a larger-than-average gas tank.
- Easy access filtering system for easy maintenance
- 1-gallon gas tank
- DOT approved construction for legal transport to job sites
- Up to 22 tons of force at full capacity
- Channel requires extra cleaning
6. Frictionless World Dirty Hand Tools 100950
In general, the Frictionless World Dirty Hand Tools 100950 Horizontal/Vertical Log Splitter meets the industry average when it comes to the important specifications. With a reliable DHT 196cc 6.5 horsepower engine under the hood, this model can split logs with the best of them. In the same vein, the 7 in. the heat-treated steel wedge on this model is as sturdy as the rest, allowing consistent splits season to season.
The Frictionless World Dirty Hand Tools 100950 stands out in two important aspects, though. The first regards its full body coating. This coating is made from low friction substances that reduce the amount of drag put on important mechanism while the full machine is in motion. This, in turn, reduces the wear caused by the usually rough, textured wood as it is driven forward and split.
Second, this model comes standard with a set of stripper plates. I wasn’t even familiar with these before trying out the Frictionless World Dirty Hand Tools 100950 and now, I’m not sure I would buy a gas log splitter without them. These plates are placed such that they smoothly debark logs as they pass through to be split, allowing the impractical, water-logged exterior to be fall away in favor of the dry, burnable interior.
So, in total, while this model doesn’t exactly distinguish itself on its primary specs, the Frictionless World Dirty Hand Tools 100950 definitely makes a name for itself between its unique frictionless coating and its practical stripper plates.
- Productive stripper plates
- 7-inch heat treated steel wedge and foot plate
- Reliable DHT 196cc 6.5 horsepower engine
- Is not compatible with four-way wedges
After evaluating each of these high-octane gas log splitters, I had one primary conclusion to cover them all. After my tests, I couldn’t ignore how much time each log splitter saved me, not to mention how much effort and energy I conserved through not swinging an axe from sun up to sundown. Though I only had most of these gas log splitters for a short time, I expect many of them to remain durable and reliable well beyond their expected lifespan.
This is all to say, I couldn’t select just one of these models to serve as the best overall gas log splitter. Each model comes packed with its own special features that can fit a variety of wood chopping needs. If you’re still wondering which model is best for you, carefully reread each review and compare each model’s features to your expected level of use.
Once you find the gas log splitter that is right for you, be sure to take some time to review safety procedures before firing it up. There’s truly nothing more important than safety when it comes to working with heavy-duty wood splitting equipment.