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thecolorgreen
09-21-2005, 06:31 PM
What time saving tips have you learned in your experience to become more efficient in the following areas:

Mowing
Edging/trimming
General Cleanup
Equipment/Vehicle maintenance
Leaf Raking
Account Management
Staying organized
Anything else not mentioned here...
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nelbuts
09-21-2005, 06:43 PM
Well I will get this noteworthy thread started.
I carry a weedeater line on a spool for quick changes.
When weedeating condos I usually start by doing the fronts and sides of all the buildings then work the back toward truck and trailer. If I have helper I have them work the backs and sides in the other direction and when we meet in the middle all we have to do is fronts and backs so it is a straight fast shot.

On really big properties that we may need to fill up before back at truck we hide a small can of two cycle and then pick it up when finished. (I know so don't say UNSAFE, UNSAFE). No different than setting on your trailer while you are gone.

When cutting we ususally do the same pattern as weedeating.

Oh and those who want lunch takes the breaks in the truck between the jobs.

Sir mowsalot
09-21-2005, 06:52 PM
When mowing i have an "easy grabber" i use to get debris off the ground, rather than getting off the z and picking it up. Very effecient, and energy saving.

gman44
09-21-2005, 07:00 PM
I keep an extra spool for trimmer with me ....I make sure the one on the machine is full when I start the day . I gas up and clean all equiptment everyday. No exceptions to the cleaning, gassing and greasing rule , it catches alot of problems before they turn into a headache. I always trim , cut then blow each lawn . I keep a log of customers who like fancy stripes and ideas to make the stripping interesting. I always look at the finished cut before I leave . If Im happy , I know the customer will be too .

splatz100
09-21-2005, 08:10 PM
When mowing i have an "easy grabber" i use to get debris off the ground, rather than getting off the z and picking it up. Very effecient, and energy saving.

Yes just get a trash pickup tool and a 5 gallon bucket, it saves alot of time and you dont chop anything up.(mainly on commercial properties)

Brianslawn
09-21-2005, 09:02 PM
i got a lot of little secrets. the biggest time saver for me was switching from mid mounts to out front walkers... and then modify them for more speed. lot less trimming. i see guys whith big fast midmounts, then have to go back and do 10 minutes of push mowing to get what ztr couldnt. also carry extra of everything and edge one handed while jogging.

wacamaster
09-21-2005, 10:20 PM
If a property's edge is overgrown. Have a worker edge first, as always, but do a quick blow and get the excess stuff in the yard so you can mow over it instead of having to pick it up afterwards. (Mainly just the brown dead grass cuz someone didn't blow properly before. (or the neighbor mows his grass, leaves it in the road.. then runs his sprinklers and it sends it down along the edge of your yard to sit and die there).

TRAIN TRAIN TRAIN YOUR WORKERS!!!!!! Good workers are by far the most important thing to being efficient. Let them know upfront you will continously correct work and show them how to do it right until it is right. This will help keep them from being offended when you tell them they did it wrong.
A good worker means he knows all the tricks of the trade. Here are some tricks of the trade for a 2 man crew assuming your doing all the mowing.

1. If the whole yard is clumping.. when he is done whipping he should goto the backyard first and start blowing. This way when you get done mowing you can start on the front yard. This eliminates 2 people from having to walk to the backyard.

2. Never lift the gate when you load the mower. Should be the last thing done (assuming you have more work on the yard such as blow) If your worker happens to get to the truck before you, he can do it.

3. If there's a lot of whipping and he knows he'll still be whipping when your done mowing, he should do the parts around the driveways first so you don't have to wait for him when you get the blower.

4. If you are mowing and know he will be blowing before your done, mow the areas around the driveway first so he doesn't have to wait for you to blow

4. I have about 20 more tips like this.. I will gladly sell them for $1 each :D . I believe I run one of the most efficient crews ever. We do cut 35 yards on Friday (2 man crew not cookie cutter yards) and have done 44 yards in one day grossing around $1500 (3 man crew). And EVERY YARD was perfect.

Organize your routes properly.

Have all equipment easy to start and running properly.

Have 6 gallon gas cans of mixed oil so you don't have to ever mix during the day.

You must be a pro at mowing. Nowing which angles work best and how to avoid ever having to run over already mowed grass is good. If your running over mowed grass.. your wasting that line.

Have an ice cold 5 gallon jug of water on trailer.. if the workers are starting to slow down due to heat and so forth.. tell them to take a "shocker".. this is dumping a nice amount over your head and face... gets them right back in gear.

Varsity L&G
09-21-2005, 10:40 PM
Good tips Wacamaster!

thecolorgreen
09-23-2005, 07:40 PM
This is good, good stuff. Anybody got any more?

mastercare
09-26-2005, 03:18 PM
Take your biggest accounts and put them at the beginning and end of each day. ...It may not be a time saver, but psychologically its better because:

1. You a couple tough ones out of the way and can forget about them before it gets hot outside.

2. IF you're like me and you're constantly counting down (only 12 more lawns to cut today), saving one or two big ones for the end lets you do the work when its cooler outside, and its a lot nicer at 4:00 to think to youself "15 lawns down, and only 2 to go." It just feels like less work when you're counting down. That is the same reason you don't put them all at the beginning of the day....if its noon and you say to yourself "4 down and 13 to go".....you'll feel behind all sitnkin day.

Maybe I'm nuts.... but by September little things can really drag you down when you've been cutting for 20 weeks straight.

wacamaster
09-26-2005, 04:50 PM
As for organizing your routes... whenever possible, have the thick fast growing yards later in the day as those yards are very hard to cut with dew on them.

LawnScapers of Dayton
09-26-2005, 04:58 PM
I will take a handheld blower with me to the rear of houses that have a porch that needs blown off after mowing. That saves me an extra trip to the rear of the home with the BP blower when the trimming & mowing is finished......

Derek

yardmanlee
09-26-2005, 05:43 PM
how bout instead of raking, try blowing then mulching if you have a two man crew he can blow while you mulch !!

BSDeality
09-26-2005, 05:48 PM
have an organized trailer. You are far from efficient when you have to unload the blowers, the weedwackers, the gas cans, the big green barrel, the push mower, your mom's meatloaf from the trailer at every stop. I built some racks a couple weeks ago and save 2-3 min per stop by not having to load/unload all the crap.

grassyfras
09-26-2005, 06:08 PM
use youe wacker to blow small porches off or your mower. Anything to avoid walking around a house with a blower. I hate to say this but if you can skip trimming most of the yard. There a pretty many where you will only have to trim around a few things.

Wells
09-26-2005, 07:49 PM
This type of thread gets posted each year and if I remember correctly form last season I believe that Jodi (1majortom) mentioned gassing up all of your equipment in the evening when your finished for the day instead of first thing in the morning.

I decided to try this time saving tip this season and was pleasantly surprised at the time that was actually saved. Instead of everyone having to check the fuel level in their mowers, blowers and trimmers they know that the levels are full and they can immediately get started.