Understanding the Cost of Dead Tree Removal

Last Updated on August 17, 2023 by Jason Nguyen

Don’t make the mistake of believing that you can take down a dying tree by yourself. Many people fall prey to the mistaken belief that all it takes is a chainsaw, a few minutes of watching how-to’s on YouTube, and they’re ready to bring that tree down without having to pay the pros. Good luck with that.

Not only could this be illegal in some jurisdictions, but you risk severely injuring or killing yourself and those around you and causing untold property damage when the tree doesn’t fall the way the guy on YouTube said it would.

Moreover, all of that before you’ve even factored in removing the stump (a task until itself) and the costs associated with disposing of the resulting debris. This post aims to convince you that hiring a professional arborist to conduct the procedure isn’t just cost-effective but will ensure the job is done right.

Factors That Affect Tree Removal Costs

Getting to grips with tree removal costs can be akin to figuring out how much it will cost to service your car. In some cases, it will be negligible; in others, more.

Nonetheless, there tend to be a few consistent factors that influence the cost when you’re looking to remove a dead tree, ranging from the size of the tree itself to where you are located and the average cost of labor.

Other factors, such as the condition of the tree, the time of year, and whether or not stump removal is included in the service, can also affect the overall cost.

Keeping these considerations in mind will allow you to make a well-informed decision about your tree removal requirements and costs.

The best idea is to contact several arborists in your area and get several quotes that should give you a good idea of the ballpark figure.

With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at some of the primary considerations that affect cost regardless of factors.

Tree Height And Width

Size is often key when understanding costs, and the taller it is and the wider its branches may be, the more time-consuming and costly the job will likely become.

It’s essential to take accurate measurements, so there won’t be any unpleasant surprises or misunderstandings when the professionals give you an estimate.

Some companies might offer a free site inspection to ascertain the cost of the job, while others might charge a call-out fee. It really depends on where you are located.

However, remember that because numerous factors go into a quote, don’t expect to receive the same price as your neighbor did with a similar-sized tree, etc.

Location And Accessibility

cost of dead tree removal

The position of the tree has a significant influence on cost. If it’s somewhere tricky, like high up a steep slope or deep in woodlands, the money might need additional, specialized equipment or to hire extra crew members to ensure the job is done safely, all of which will add to your final bill.

Accessibility is another cost influencer. For instance, is the tree wedged between two buildings or hanging over a fence to a neighbor unwilling to allow access via their poverty?

These issues, as frustrating as they are, will up the time and cost needed for effective removal. So when estimating what this job might cost you, ensure you’ve thoroughly evaluated where that pesky tree is located and how easy it’ll be to get at.

If in doubt, call the removal company to visit and come up with an estimation based on their experience.

Hazard Assessment And Risk Factors

As you read in the introduction, the reason you want to avoid doing this job yourself is because of the risks it presents.

There’s actually quite a lot that needs to be thought through before you can dive in,m including identifying the portail risks involved and performing a risk assessment that covers people and property.

Moreover, some dead trees might have severe bug infestations or rot, causing them to fall differently from how a living tree might.

In other words, there are a plethora of things that can make removal dangerous, not only for those of you wanting to play amateur lumberjack but also for the experts themselves. Tree removal experts often employ certified arborists who are skilled at assessing hazards linked with both living and trees and formulation of detailed plans for their safe removal.

Type Of Equipment Needed

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If you’re looking at the bill for removing a dead tree and wondering why it’s so steep, consider what goes into the process. It’s not just about chopping down wood; it involves specific equipment tailored to each job.

For example, if your tree is squeezed between two buildings, then cranes or trucks will be necessary to safely navigate obstacles without causing any collateral damage.

Conversely, if your tree sits in an open field with no nearby structures to damage, it might only require chainsaws and stump grinders to remove it effectively.

When hiring professionals who bring both skill and a set of top-notch tools built up over the years, you can be assured that every penny spent will ensure minimal risk while ridding you of your unwanted deadwood.

Labor And Time Required

By now, it should be evident that tree removal is a highly skilled job that takes years to learn but a lifetime to master.

As such, you should expect labor costs to be higher than other manual jobs. Moreover, this isn’t merely because of the skill but of the additional hazards they encounter when taking down large trees.

It takes experienced professionals with specialized equipment and skills to do it right, so don’t go cutting corners when choosing a company.

Get an upfront quote that includes labor-time estimates and costings for each step of the process; this way, your money isn’t wasted on something too time-consuming or expensive.

Disposal And Cleanup Fee

The job doesn’t stop once the tree has been felled; there is still the matter of cleanup and disposal. While these are usually considered additional tasks that the felling company will tack on if you wish, they are a worthwhile expense depending on the size of the tree.

When deciding what is more important to you regarding time, money, or safety, remember that disposing of a large tree can be just as dangerous as felling it.

Removing a dead tree takes a lot of hard work, specialist tools, and, above all, experience. Consequently, you shouldn’t expect it to be a straightforward job that will cost you little.

As long as you understand what goes into the task, you will be better prepared to understand the costs you are quoted and how the company came to that conclusion.