A stump grinder is a powerful tool that you can use to get rid of what’s left of your trees. It literally grinds it and the tree roots with a cutter disk or wheel that spins at very high speeds. The wheel has teeth on it which do the cutting. Those teeth will grind everything up until you’re left with nothing but wood chips. If your’re searching for a one that is for sale, you should always make sure the teeth on the wheel are in great shape. A Rayco is known for having long lasting cutting wheels. Even if you just need a stump grinder rental, it’s best to take a look at the teeth before leaving the rental shop. Now usually the teeth on a disk are made of carbide. Hydraulic cylinders are used in the grinder to push it down through the wood and to raise it back up. Of course it takes a while of pushing down and up to slowly grind away the wood, but it’s a highly effective method.
When people have trees removed from their property, they often forget that they’ll be left with a clump that gets in the way of what they’re trying to do. The truth is that almost all tree services do not include removal as part of their standard service. Some can even charge more than what they did for cutting the tree down! Many people think they can just dig a stump out of the ground. I once had a friend who spent an entire Saturday stubbornly trying to dig one out. By the time was done he was well on his way to a nice swimming pool in his backyard. It was hilarious to say the least.
These grinders come in various sizes. They can be anywhere in size from a glorified lawnmower to a large pickup. It all depends on what the job calls for. The typical one usually has a 16 or 17 inch diameter. If you own a large property or just plan on having to remove a lot, it’s worth your time and money to rent one or even buy one depending on your actual needs.
A tree service company will typically charge you anywhere between $80 and $160+ to remove a stump (depends on size of course). If you have at least two large ones to get rid of, it should be worth it for you to do it yourself. The rental costs vary but you can usually get one from somewhere between $100 – $200 per day.
Of course if you’re looking to clear out a large section of property, as in an acre or more, you definitely would be best served to go ahead and buy a grinder. More than one company manufactures them and there’s a wide range available. The average personal use one though will only require a 16 – 17 inch one. Some of the manufacturers include: Vermeer, Honda, Northstar, Bluebird, Husqvarna, and more.
Safety Tips for Using a Stump Grinder
1. Wear Safe Clothing – Sounds crazy, of course, but you really do need to pay attention to what you’re wearing when operating the machine. Believe it or not more than a few people have been killed by having their clothes get caught up in the spinning cutting wheel. If you can imagine getting dragged under those blades, you can now imagine why you’re going to watch what you wear. You absolutely need to have tight clothes. Short sleeves would be preferable as well.
2) No Jewelry Allowed – Once again it’s very important take off all your jewelry before using one. Don’t even think about starting a machine before doing so. Remove ALL necklaces, watches, bracelets, and piercings if they are big, etc. You do NOT want to get any of those caught in this machine.
3) Safety Eye Glasses – An absolute MUST for anyone using a grinder. When you use one, it spits out thousands of very small pieces of wood. It does that at an extremely high speed too, making it imperative that you have safety glasses on. One piece of wood in your eye could result in you losing it. Not exactly worth it considering a pair of glasses will run you like $10. Be smart. Get some glasses!
4) Good Old Common Sense – Of course many of the things mentioned here are simple common sense. You’d also be surprised how many millions of people a year end up in an emergency room because they don’t follow them! Do what we recommend here and make your experience a useful one, not a day where you have to end up getting medical attention! When all is said and done, it’s just plain common sense that your life is worth a whole lot more than a stump.
Best of luck and hope you have a great experience!