16 Feb 2022

DIY Tree Removal

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Knowing how to cut down a tree is a useful skill to have, especially if it’s on your home improvement to-do list or if you need firewood. It can, however, be a dangerous task. Taking proper safety precautions and being realistic about the job is important. If the tree is so big that you must use a ladder, this tree is too big for you to safely remove on your own. For large trees, it’s best to hire a certified professional. If the tree on your property is small enough for you to handle alone, here are some tips on how to get the job done safely.

  • Water around the tree the day before so that the soil is easier to dig.
  • Evaluate the site and tree. Determine if the tree is dead or alive, and note the direction it may be leaning.
  • Clear the area, estimate a falling zone and create two escape paths.
  • Measure the tree trunk. For every inch around, expect to dig six inches deep so that you reach the entire root system of the tree.
  • Use a chainsaw to create hinge, notching and felling cuts.
  • If the tree is small enough, remove the root ball. If you plan on relocating the tree, keep it intact. If you plan on disposing of the tree, cut it up with a chainsaw.

Always remember to wear googles, gloves, a mask and a helmet when removing a tree. If you can, ask someone to be a lookout for you. This person should stand a few feet behind you to keep an eye out for falling branches and to alert you when the tree is falling. Also, remember: Never look away from a falling tree. 

  • *If you have any hesitancy or concerns with the safety of your tree removal project, please call a professional for assistance.
About the Author

I have been a Realtor for over 25+ years helping folks find their dream home.