Stump grinding

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Ben Ruset, Mar 30, 2019.

  1. Ben Ruset

    Ben Ruset Administrator
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    I have an old tree stump that I need to take out of my yard. I've looked at a ton of youtube videos of people using epson salt, some other things that are supposed to rot the stump out, and burning. None of them look particularly great. The burning one looks fun but I doubt my neighbors will appreciate it as much as I would.

    Has anybody paid a tree service to come around and grind the stump out? I want to know if I'm looking at a $100 job or a $500 job. The stump is maybe 18" in diameter.
     
  2. bobpbx

    bobpbx Piney
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    I think closer to the latter (but I think $500 is high). I never did use a pro.

    In my youth I've dug out a few. Never a pleasant job. Especially when you get to one ornery root when you can't get enough dirt out to saw it, and in frustration you start hacking at it with an axe, and it starts bouncing back at you because nothing behind the root is supporting it. By that time it's dusk, and mosquitoes are having fun with the sweat on the back of your neck.
     
  3. Toothy Critter

    Toothy Critter Explorer

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    Gee, I wonder if Sunoco 87 octane and a power drill would work? :rolleyes:
     
  4. Ben Ruset

    Ben Ruset Administrator
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    People on Youtube were recommending a hammer drill, long bit, and kerosene. Three things that I don't own right now. Buying all of that (and tbh I want to buy a hammer drill anyway) would probably go a long way towards having Joe Stump Grinder come out and get rid of the stump.
     
  5. mowergod

    mowergod New Member

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    Hey Ben you can rent them and do it your self. There not hard to use and places like Rental Country and Home Depot rent them
     
  6. Don Catts

    Don Catts Explorer

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    Ben,
    home remedies never seem to work. If you try to burn it out it may smolder for days. If it starts smoldering under ground you may have a problem. Tree services charge by the inch. My guess is between $100 or $200. You can also rent a stump grinder, may be around $75 or so for half a day.
     
  7. GermanG

    GermanG Piney

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    I operated a tree service for a few years after working for another before that. Stump grinding is usually priced per inch of stump diameter, measured at the widest part, and the grinding generally extends a few inches past the visible stump, more if large surface roots need to be chased. It's been over 30 years now but I seem to recall charging somewhere around $3.00 an inch back then. I'd imagine it's more now. And don't expect to be given the per-inch price however. That would result in measurement arguments no businessman wants to deal with.

    I've since rented grinders several times for stumps at my own home and was dissapointed each time. Time is money for tree services and they regularly replace or have the carbide teeth sharpened. Not so with rental agencies. I think I could have dug the stump out by hand faster than I ground it the last time. These were smaller, self-propelled machines. A larger, towable one, similar to what I used commercially, will likley do better, but the rental fee might make hiring the job out more attractrive for just one stump.
     
    #7 GermanG, Mar 30, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2019
  8. 46er

    46er Piney

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    Where are you located? I have a local tree guy that is very reasonable, used him many times. He'll be taking out some dead pines for me, beetle casualties, charge is $300 for the largest and grinding a stump is definitely not going to be anywhere near that, unless the tree has to come down first. ;) I leave the stumps. He is located in Berkeley Township.
     
  9. bobpbx

    bobpbx Piney
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    I have a hammer drill and a pretty long bit if you want to use it. But I don't understand why it would have to be the hammer selector used. You just rotate the head to use the drill side.
     
  10. Ben Ruset

    Ben Ruset Administrator
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    I'm in Eatontown (Monmouth County) now.

    I think hiring it out will make the most sense. Even if I wanted to rent one, I have no way of getting it home.

    Thanks for all the advice!
     
  11. John E.

    John E. New Member

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    Ben, if you are not in a huge hurry just drill a whole bunch of 1/2" holes in the top of the stump about an inch apart. This allows water and insect life to get in and do their thing. I did this for a maple stump in my yard that was approx. 16" across and here we are a few years later and it is gone.
     
  12. Toothy Critter

    Toothy Critter Explorer

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    Just drill as big as possible holes as deep as you can in the stump. And be careful not to accidentally spill a container of gas into the holes. Simple … but absolutely no matches
     
  13. Zach McGarvey

    Zach McGarvey Explorer

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    I've done this two ways, and neither is fun. The first tree, only maybe 16" in diameter, i drilled deep holes in with an auger bit and then gradually burned it away, day after day, with gasoline. That was a long and drawn-out process and the ground still sinks slightly in that location each year after I filled it in. When I took down my giant oak (90ft tall by 40-48" diameter) I hired a grinder and he came out with a massive self-propelled tracked machine. It still took him 3-4 hours but the stump was ground down at least 12" below grade. What shocked me was the massive amount of wood chips it produces. From a stump, roughly 4 feet in diameter and no more than 8 inches above grade when he started, it produced six or seven heaping truckloads of chips. The problem is disposing of them, since you can't burn green chips (especially when they're mixed with dirt) and if you leave them on your lawn and just try to mow over them, their decomposition will pull all the nitrogen out of the soil. Here in the city there's no place on my property to just dump them-- lucikly my wife's community garden was willing to accept them in their compost pile. It also took several yards of topsoil to fill in the hole left behind and I'm still trying to get grass to grow in that location. I think the contractor charged me $400, and that seemed fair given the massive size of the stump. If you go this route, make sure you have a wood chip disposal plan.
     
  14. enormiss

    enormiss Explorer

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    Digging is easy here, dig down a foot all around it and chainsaw it off.
     
  15. ecampbell

    ecampbell Piney

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    That's why I always keep old chains around.
     
  16. WaretownMike

    WaretownMike Explorer

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    I set a few chlorine tabs from my pool on a stump and it was nearly gone by the next year
     
  17. ecampbell

    ecampbell Piney

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    What made you think of using chlorine?
     
  18. WaretownMike

    WaretownMike Explorer

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    I’m a bit of a DIY guy and know that chlorine is pretty corrosive as I’ve seen it burn through plastic easily.

     
  19. 1Jerseydevil

    1Jerseydevil Explorer

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    How large of a stump diameter wise? Did you drill holes or just pile the chlorine on top?
     
  20. WaretownMike

    WaretownMike Explorer

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    I used a chainsaw to cut it down as low as I could and then cut a few deep gouges into the stump. I placed 3 chlorine tabs on the stump - if I recall I did one tab and then a season later added 2 more. It also killed the grass around the stump so be careful
     
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