Log Splitter Safety Tips

Follow these tips to stay safe while working a log splitter.

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A log splitter, with its slow-moving wedge, is a relatively safe machine. But you should heed these precautions to prevent injury.

Know Your Machine

If you own a log splitter, you’re familiar with all of its controls. If you’re renting one, familiarize yourself with the controls before you start splitting logs. We used a log splitter from Northern Tool to help get the job done for our Getaway project.

Wear the Right Clothes

  • Whenever you’re running machinery, wear ear protection. Your older self will thank your younger self.
  • Splinters and slivers are a given when working with logs. Wear heavy leather gloves.
  • While the possibility of airborne debris is relatively low, safety glasses are a must. Don’t chance it.
  • As you work, heavy split logs fall to the ground. Protect your feet with a sturdy pair of work boots. Steel-toed boots are ideal.

Only One Operator

It’s fine to have a helper passing the logs to you, but only one person should hold the log and operate the wedge. Only you know when you’ve got the log positioned just right with your hand safely steadying the log.

Clear the Work Area

Don’t leave logs or other debris lying around where you’re working. You don’t want to trip and fall or turn an ankle while you’re carrying heavy logs.

Work on Flat Ground

Flat ground is not only safer for walking and working on, it also helps prevent the heavy log splitter from rolling.

Block the Wheels

Even though you’re working on flat ground, take the extra step of blocking the log splitter’s wheels to prevent it from rolling.

Cut Logs As Squarely As Possible

A log with an angled end makes it harder for the wedge to get a good “bite” on the log. Also, an angled end slides off the splitter’s block. Both scenarios can easily land a heavy log on your foot!

Now that you know the ins and outs of log splitter safety, take a look at our roundup of best log splitters of 2022.

Brad Holden
As deputy project editor for Family Handyman, Brad has seen and done pretty much everything around home repair and DIY projects. His experience with tools, plans and projects gives him a voice of authority with anything from plumbing to furniture building.