Is there a dead tree in your yard that you’re looking to get rid of? Do you have a tree in your front yard or backyard that’s in the way of an ongoing project? If so, then you need to learn how to remove a tree.
The process depends on a tree by tree basis. The larger the tree is, the more difficult it will be for you to cut down safely. In fact, you might want the help of a professional.
If you intend to do it yourself, see below for several steps on how to perform tree removal as safe as possible.
1. Assess the Overall Situation
No matter what your reasoning for wanting to remove the tree, there might be some complications that would make it difficult to perform DIY tree removal.
For example, if the tree you intend to cut down is too close to your home or fence, it could result in serious damage. The tree’s trunk could topple in the wrong direction, a large branch could fall off and damage your property, you get the idea.
Before you go about reading the rest of this article, assess the situation that you’re facing.
If you aren’t 100-percent certain you can remove the tree without damaging something, then you should contact a tree removal service. Better to pay for a professional tree removal than pay for the damage one mistake could cost you.
2. Get the Right Equipment and Clear the Surrounding Space
To remove the tree as safe as possible, you’ll need to do two things: equip yourself with the correct tools and clear the vicinity of the tree.
For equipment, you’ll want to have face masks, ear muffs/plugs, safety goggles/glasses, and work gloves for everyone that’s helping out. You’ll also need a chainsaw and an ax. Be sure to only use one chainsaw and one ax at a time, never simultaneously.
Now that you have your necessary tools, it’s time to clear the area around the tree you want to remove. Get rid of all belongings within a six-foot radius of the tree’s widest branch.
Store all outside furniture, garden supplies, and anything else that’s moveable in a safer location.
It’s important to note that if there are any buildings or power lines within the felling zone of your tree, you’re legally required to hire a professional tree removal service. They’ll be able to get the permits to cut the tree down.
3. Determine Falling Direction and Escape Routes
Next, before you start chopping up branches, you’ll want to plan for which way you want the tree to fall. For some of you, that will be decided for you by avoiding the fence, house, shed, or other objects on one side.
For those of you that have a wide-open space to let the tree fall, have it fall in the direction that it’s leaning.
Once you figure out the fall path, you’ll want to decide on two different escape routes if your plans go south. In other words: if the tree starts falling anywhere other than the planned direction, how will you and everyone else get out of the way.
This can be as easy as telling everyone where to go if the tree were to start falling in your direction. You have more time than you think, but you will still need to act fast.
4. Cut an Angle
The angle that you cut is going to dictate which way the tree falls. Wherever you cut the angle, the tree will fall in that direction.
For example, if you’re staring straight at the trunk of your tree, and you cut an angle on the right side of it, the tree will fall to the right side.
Start by cutting a 70-degree angle on the side you want it to fall. Cut it until it’s a quarter of the way through the entirety of the tree trunk. Stay on your guard at all times, even though it shouldn’t, there’s always a potential that the trunk starts to topple.
5. Cut Through the Trunk
Now that you have the angle cut through the trunk, all that’s left is to continue cutting through the trunk until it falls.
Take your ax or chainsaw (your preference) and cut a horizontal line straight through the trunk. Use the bottom of the angle you’ve cut out as your starting point, then cut straight through in a line.
Ideally, you’ll be able to cut through until only 10-percent of the trunk is left. However, there’s always a potential that the trunk starts to fall sooner. Whenever you notice movement, start backing away. Worst case scenario, you have to cut a bit more off.
6. Cut the Remains
Now that the tree has toppled over and is safely on the ground, it’s time to start cutting off the branches. You’ll want to cut the remains.
Start by chopping through and disposing of all the branches until they’re all removed. Then cut the tree down into smaller pieces that you can manage to carry and throw away or store as firewood.
This is another benefit of hiring a professional tree removal service, they can cut down the remains and dispose of it however you prefer them to.
How to Remove a Tree: Make the Right Call
The most important part of how to remove a tree is assessing the situation from the very start. Trying to save money isn’t a good reason to avoid hiring a professional tree removal service.
At the very least, have a tree removal expert come out to take a look at the tree you want to remove and get a quote for their service.
Be sure to browse our website for more articles on tree removal, as well as many other helpful topics you’ll enjoy.