How to sharpen an axe safely in four quick steps, according to a DIY expert

Close up of axe being sharpened with metal file
(Image credit: Getty Images)

You’ll need to know how to sharpen an axe if you own one. A dull or blunt edge simply won’t work as efficiently or effectively as a well-maintained tool. It's not a lengthy or difficult task, but it is one that you need to get right so you can appreciate your axe at its best.

There’s several options and tools that can be used to sharpen an axe. Some are cheaper and easier to use, but all achieve similar results. The popular options are a specialist metal file or a whetstone, but you can buy specialist sharpening wheels that attach to a drill.

Here we look at the process that will get your axe ready for chopping logs for log burning stoves, open fires and chopping down unwanted greenery in your garden. 

Step-by-step guide on how to sharpen an axe

Steve Jenkins

Steve Jenkins is a freelance content creator with over two decades of experience working in digital and print and was previously the DIY content editor for Homebuilding & Renovating. 

He is a keen DIYer with over 20 years of experience in transforming and renovating the many homes he has lived in. He specialises in painting and decorating, but has a wide range of skills gleaned from working in the building trade for around 10 years and spending time at night school learning how to plaster and plumb.

He has fitted kitchens, tiled bathrooms and kitchens, laid many floors, built partition walls, plastered walls, plumbed in bathrooms, worked on loft conversions and much more. And when he's not sure how to tackle a DIY project he has a wide network of friends – including plumbers, gas engineers, tilers, carpenters, painters and decorators, electricians and builders – in the trade to call upon.