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View Full Version : Gas prices hurting you now or soon


stevenf
03-08-2008, 06:33 PM
I am in the process of building my business and right now Im using a Bronco II that gets about 13-15mpg and less then that when towing. It got me thinking about all of you who have the big 3/4 ton deisel trucks. Most of your trucks are pulling ALOT more then mine to.
I was going to buy a dodge ram 1500 with a v6 that gets 17-20mpg. What are you guys going to do for your businesses? Do you plan to buy more fuel efficient 4-6cyl trucks and cut way back on equipment weight, or do you plan on gutting out the $5-$6 a gallon gas until vehicles are manufactured to have better gas milage? I know I spend ATLEAST $65.00 a week on gas for lawn work and essential living purposes and I have very little customers right now.

JShe8918
03-08-2008, 08:25 PM
I plan on just sucking it up. There is nothing we can do to control the price. All we can do is pray for the best. I got $20.02 in diesel today and it was only 5.284 gallons according to the slip i got back. It is $3.79 a gallon here. I spend 100 dollars a week one fuel. That is until this summer i am going to be looking at 200 dollars or a little more. Don't get a V-6 unless you plan on not pulling with it. you think you get bad pulling a trailer now what till you have less power and see how bad it gets.... Just my .02 cents

Scagmower48
03-08-2008, 08:31 PM
I own a 2002 Dodge Ram 1500 V6 5 speed manual and I only get a lousy 13 mpg around town not towing. I prolly get 17 mpg on the highway. V6 full size trucks get about the same gas mileage as V8 full size trucks.

CrownlawnCare
03-08-2008, 08:34 PM
If you plan on pulling anykind of weight, I would never even consider a v-6. They may get a few more miles per gallon but you are straining the v-6 to much. What if you expand your company? Then you would have wished you would have a v-8. "Thats all I have to say about that" Forrest Gump :laugh::laugh:

old oak lawn
03-08-2008, 11:04 PM
i would love $65.00 a week. how about $250.00 a week

pinto n mwr
03-08-2008, 11:12 PM
how about 1500 per week. Does not concern me too much though. Fuel costs are only 5% of my revenue. If/when gas goes to $4 it would mean 6% of my revenue. Gotta look at the numbers before you freak out. I'll take a 33% jump in cost of business if it is only going to affect me by 1% overall anyday, especially with everything increasing in cost

HOOLIE
03-09-2008, 12:36 AM
I've gotten a lot more aware of my routing since gas went thru the roof. I'm always looking to see if I can be more efficient in that regard. I also just moved to a new storage shed which is going to save me about 20 miles of driving per day. Besides saving $4-$5 in gas a day, I'll be saving 100 miles of wear and tear on the truck.

I'm utterly shocked nobody has chimed in with the cliche response of "have tighter routes" :laugh: That's easy to say but harder to do. Your lawns are where they are. Try at least to pick up one more lawn anywhere you have a single stop. Then you'll have the leeway to drop some lawns that involve too much driving.

Generally, I no longer look at the gas pump :dizzy: I just stick the nozzle in and hit 'YES' for a receipt and drive away

Whitey4
03-09-2008, 12:56 AM
Gas prices don't phase me much. I have a Chevy S-10 V-6 Vortec, and a small trailer that pulls around (soon) a Qiuck 32 and a Husky power rake. The rest of my equipment is inside the 8 foot bed. Through concentrated targeted advertising, my 11 new accounts are all within a hlaf mile of my house. After dumping my lame accounts, as a solo, I now have a paltry 16 going into year 2, but all billable from $1,300 to over $2,000 a year. I'm getting two new accounts per week. ALL within a half mile. Small properties, biggest with 4k of turf.

The trailer, Quick and Husky weigh about 750 lbs. Most of the time, I won't have the Husky on the trailer. So, I know from my small bass boat, I'll get about 18MPG. I only drive about 25 miles a week going to accounts... add another 25 for supply runs.

My business plan took fuel costs as a major overhead cost that had to be minimized. So far, so good. It could go up to $5 a gallon, and it won't put a big hurt on me, but I can still use it as a reason to charge a bit more. Pretty much offsets.

Being certified and legal to do apps makes all the difference. I need another 15 accounts or so, all in this half mile territiory, and I'm good. I am a solo, and have another gig on the side.

No Yellow page ads for me... walking with door hangers. Skipping houses I don't want. Tight route, good business plan. So far, so good.

stevenf
03-09-2008, 03:21 AM
Really what I was talking about is trying to future proof yourself as much as possible. With prices getting so high, so fast, I see it being a very hard time within the next few years. Im trying to get a fuel efficient truck and tow a WB on my 5x10 trailer.
With the value of money dropping and prices rising, people will just get more "stingy" with spending so I think raising our prices to catch up with living, wont work out so good. Gas was my first guess for saving money.

Big C
03-09-2008, 04:05 AM
I own a 2002 Dodge Ram 1500 V6 5 speed manual and I only get a lousy 13 mpg around town not towing. I prolly get 17 mpg on the highway. V6 full size trucks get about the same gas mileage as V8 full size trucks.

My new 2008 GMC Sierra 1500 V8 gets 16mpg in the city and 20+mpg on the highway and my old 1999 Dodge Dakota Sport V6 got 13mpg city and 17 at best on the highway and didn't pull worth a crap.

lawnman_scott
03-09-2008, 10:55 AM
I just hope it gets to $4.00 a gallon. That way it will be all over the news and raising raites will be a breeze. No one will complain.

KS_Grasscutter
03-09-2008, 11:21 AM
I'm not worried about it at all. Well, for my business anyway. On the other hand, my extra BS driving around when I am bored has GOT TO STOP. I need to cut my "leisure" driving by about 75%.

MnDLawn
03-09-2008, 11:50 AM
No way you will get that kind of millage even with a V6, low teens is more realistic. Gas prices suck but you have to deal with them, here is something to put it into perspective, we are not that bad.

http://www.blogsmithmedia.com/www.gadling.com/media/2007/06/worldwidegas.jpg

cer1971
03-09-2008, 12:01 PM
Don't get the v-6 it limits what you can do and in the long run it will hurt you as the company grows. Just plan out your mowing route the best you can so you cut down on the miles.GOOD LUCK! Everyone is in the same boat.

progressivelawncare
03-09-2008, 12:19 PM
my 06 dodge quad cab 4x4 gets about 14.5 mpg pulling a 12 footer loaded, it has the small v8 in it and suits my purposes perfect no more v6's for me!!!!

Grassmechanic
03-09-2008, 12:59 PM
I'm kinda looking forward to higher fuel prices. It'll chase away the wanna-be lawncare guys. Fuel is a relatively small cost to doing business and is passed on to the customer anyways. High fuel prices will seperate the wheat from the chaff.

KS_Grasscutter
03-09-2008, 01:02 PM
I'm kinda looking forward to higher fuel prices. It'll chase away the wanna-be lawncare guys. Fuel is a relatively small cost to doing business and is passed on to the customer anyways. High fuel prices will seperate the wheat from the chaff.

Yep:clapping:

Weekes
03-09-2008, 01:31 PM
Don't by that extra hot dog and big gulp. You'll actually notice a drop in prices at the station. J/K


My point being the actual cost of gas in mowing is minor. Yes a pain, but many people commute the total distance we travel in a day to and from work. At least we get to subtract it from our taxes and place the cost on the customer. Actual mowing does not burn tons of fuel. And for the junk food comment, seriously we as a society complain about a price increase on minute and then blow $20 on pure junk all the time.

jlawnservice
03-09-2008, 01:38 PM
the best thing for this business would be $5 gas, weed out the wanna bes

Whitey4
03-09-2008, 02:00 PM
No way you will get that kind of millage even with a V6, low teens is more realistic. Gas prices suck but you have to deal with them, here is something to put it into perspective, we are not that bad.

http://www.blogsmithmedia.com/www.gadling.com/media/2007/06/worldwidegas.jpg

I did get 18 when towing my small bass boat, but that was highway miles, so I'll back off on that and quilify it. I won't be anywhere near a highway with this trailer. I don't run my vehicles hard.... and now, I KNOW you won't beleive this, but I'm at 79,000 and still on the original brake pads and clutch. I swear that is truth.

I sold my last truck at 47,000 and the original Michelins looked like they had 10,000 on them. The buyer had a hard time believing me. I go very easy on the gas and the brake.... and haven't had an accident in 30 years, knock wood.

nosparkplugs
03-09-2008, 02:19 PM
I switched to Diesel 3 years ago, and while diesel is more per gallon, here in Memphis @ $3.45. I am still spending less on fuel, diesel fuel is 147,000BTU per gallon, where gasoline is 125,000BTU per gallon. That is a 40% increase in energy per gallon,(more bang for the buck) even with the higher cost of diesel fuel, diesel engine weight penalty, and 5,000 dollar increase for the Engine option. If your serious about making money the diesel is a long term investment that pays for itself over time, like right now, I average 13.5 MPG while hauling over 13,500 GTWR 30ft gooseneck & Kubota MX6800, and up to 16MPG with a 25 ft Lawn & landscape maintenance trailer, stop & go city driving, remember your making money with your truck, most folks do not work their trucks like a Lawn & Landscape, business does, so try that with your HEMI powered 2500 or Chevy "big block" gas burner or Ford V-10.

tufguy100
03-09-2008, 02:21 PM
that is impressive you must really baby those trucks i dont know anyone who gets that kind of milage i know i dont but i used to race cars so i have a lead foot even in my trucks

bruno_rs
03-09-2008, 02:39 PM
Really what I was talking about is trying to future proof yourself as much as possible. With prices getting so high, so fast, I see it being a very hard time within the next few years. Im trying to get a fuel efficient truck and tow a WB on my 5x10 trailer.
With the value of money dropping and prices rising, people will just get more "stingy" with spending so I think raising our prices to catch up with living, wont work out so good. Gas was my first guess for saving money.

hey steven, i agree and value your concerns... it should be a concern we all have. there are too many "big boys" on here saying they do not care (about fuel prices) and some wish it would go up. i don't mean any disrepect but, that is EXACTLY the wrong way to look at the energy crisis we find ourselves in, right now. what do you all think this economy is ACTUALLY based on? is it not true, EVERYTHING you buy, sell and/or need to survive is created, supported, maintained and/or delivered by machines which run on "oil"? this economy is 100% DEPENDENT on oil and/or its' pricing. moreover, with this increase in fuel prices, demand for many things has, in fact, dropped and the loss of "many" jobs is a direct result. in my opinion, those in this industry must to be flexible and willing to change with the times, or it won't be long before you're out of business. i myself have begun to downsize and have converted one of my trucks to a "grasser" body. the truck is an 84 chevy cucv (military issue pu) 6.2 diesel, 5/4 ton with a 9ft flatbed. i can fit 2 ztrs (side by side), 2 21" mowers, 2 string trimmers, 2 backback blowers and below the bed in the (2) 2ft toolboxes my fuel cans and various supplies and handtools... pretty much everything i had on my 12ft trailer... just a little tighter. moreover, i can very quickly put on/take off my dump insert, 8 ft airflow sander, or add the stakes for picking up/dropping off larger cargo. by switching to the flatbed, it has made this truck more versitile and therefore a "money maker and/or saver" for me. brings to mind the saying... bigger is not always better and/or less is more. always keep in mind, it's not how much you make but what you keep! these "grasser" bodies and using smaller trucks (when possible), in my opinion, is the future of this business. my truck gets approximately 16-18 mpg loaded AND by not needing the trailer, i can get in and out of ANYWHERE without any trouble! just my .02, no disrepect intended. have a good one.

landscaperdan
03-09-2008, 03:16 PM
I have a 2001 Dodge Ram 1500 (V8) with 220,000 miles on it. About 200,000 of those miles were pulling all sorts of trailers. It didn't seem to be a problem for fuel economy unless the wieght was over about 8,000lbs. I still drive the truck as a work truck and still get about 14mpg. Buy the V8 and tighten the groups of accounts you have. Hoolie said it best "I'm utterly shocked nobody has chimed in with the cliche response of "have tighter routes" That's easy to say but harder to do. Your lawns are where they are. Try at least to pick up one more lawn anywhere you have a single stop. Then you'll have the leeway to drop some lawns that involve too much driving.

Generally, I no longer look at the gas pump I just stick the nozzle in and hit 'YES' for a receipt and drive away".

My feelings all the way. Good luck!

nosparkplugs
03-09-2008, 03:23 PM
bruno rs, so your running diesel? Agflation, is the term that economists are using for the increase of food costs directly related to the increase of framers selling their corn or soybean crops for E85 or Biodiesel production. You learn to adapt, or go under thats all, everyone and their brother wants to start a lawn business, it all depends on who you talk to, on the state of the Union, those who have not budgeted well, over extended their credit are hurting, sorry I do not feel sorry for them, I have earned what i have built over 7 years, with sacrifice, sweat & hard work. It is easier now for me to get a low% buisness credit line than ever, lenders are looking for folks that have good credit. Most of all thinking outside of the box, Diesel power is the solution to high gas prices, the big three are rolling out their 1/2 ton truck lines with smaller V8, V6 CGI Diesel engines that will sip diesel, when compared to their current V8 1/2 ton gasoline guzzler powerplants, for many that crazy, to expensive, thinking outside the box?, the solution is within reach, sometimes it involves a risk, or just not agreeing with the masses.

TomberLawn
03-09-2008, 04:02 PM
Gas prices haven't hurt my business, but it sure hurts to buy fuel. The Cummins averages 18-19, mostly back roads, towing probably 10-15% of the time. My truck is a short bed extended cab and I'll load it up to the gills to keep from having to pull a trailer if I can help it. If I had a long bed, I'd look into building a landscape body for it and never pull the trailer unless I needed the tractor or had a lot of supplies to move. The only drawback I would see to having a landscape bed on my truck is that I am only part-time and use my truck as a daily driver. I would have to unload the truck at the end of the day.

I'm ready to see some smaller diesel mowers, like in the 48"-52" range. Grasshopper has a 52" diesel, but nobody else has one (BobCat's has a 2 cylinder and is as loud as a helicopter). I think it would be really cool to see small diesels even on walk-behinds. Numerous people who have run gas and diesel mowers of the same size report using about 1/3-1/2 as much fuel in the diesel, not to mention the benefits of more torque. Throw a turbo on a small diesel and you'll have very little emissions and great power. Imagine filling your mower with UNTAXED Off-Highway diesel for less than $3/gallon, or better yet, brew your own biodiesel for less than $1/gallon.

Not to get off on a political tangent, but I don't see why the gov't is pushing for corn to be used in ethanol. Corn and corn by-products are in almost everything. Why place even more demand on it? I've seen reports on numerous other natural resources that produce more energy than corn and have virtually no demand already. Let's use kudzu for ethanol, there's plenty of that!

bruno_rs
03-09-2008, 04:50 PM
bruno rs, so your running diesel? Agflation, is the term that economists are using for the increase of food costs directly related to the increase of framers selling their corn or soybean crops for E85 or Biodiesel production. You learn to adapt, or go under thats all, everyone and their brother wants to start a lawn business, it all depends on who you talk to, on the state of the Union, those who have not budgeted well, over extended their credit are hurting, sorry I do not feel sorry for them, I have earned what i have built over 7 years, with sacrifice, sweat & hard work. It is easier now for me to get a low% buisness credit line than ever, lenders are looking for folks that have good credit. Most of all thinking outside of the box, Diesel power is the solution to high gas prices, the big three are rolling out their 1/2 ton truck lines with smaller V8, V6 CGI Diesel engines that will sip diesel, when compared to their current V8 1/2 ton gasoline guzzler powerplants, for many that crazy, to expensive, thinking outside the box?, the solution is within reach, sometimes it involves a risk, or just not agreeing with the masses.

hey nospark, the point of my thead is just what you state... if one is going to make it in this volitile market, you MUST think outside of the box. however the "agflation" you speak of is bulls#!t. i don't mean to offend you, but that's a real copout and just an "easy way out" for economists and/or politicians to pass the blame for this MESS we find ourselves in today. rather than finding a viable solutions, they're working overtime to "create" terms such as this in order to "pass the buck" and/or find someone else to blame. politics 101... if you can't impress em with your intellect baffle em with bulls#!t. in my previous post, i'm not just referring to food... i mean ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING you buy, sell and/or need to survive has dramatically increased and it's gonna get worse before it gets better. ethanol is a total waste of time... that's not thinking outside of the box... it's moving backwards by decades. politicians and/or anyone supporting ethanol as an "alternative" fuel source show themselves to be FOOLS! why do you suppose meat and poultry has gone up?... for the most part, their primary food source is corn and grains. it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure if there's less corn and/or grain available, prices are going to go thru the roof for ALL OUR food sources AND spill over into MANY other daily necessities. moreover if this ("growing" for ethanol) is not biting ones hand to spite the face, i don't know what is! i am doing my best to change with the times... not only am i changing my trucks to grassers, i am seriously looking into wvo systems for my diesels. please do not take offense to my comments... they are not directed at you, nor do i wish to question and/or condemn anyone in this forum and/or their business plan. my absolute disgust is with the BONEHEADS we elect into office and do absolutely nothing but sit on their "seats" collecting a FAT paychecks and ridiculous benefits, while "we the people" work like dogs and get so much less for all our hard work and efforts!

HOOLIE
03-09-2008, 04:55 PM
I don't see high gas prices 'culling the herd' of too many LCOs. If that was going to happen, it would have happened back when gas went from $1 a gallon to $3.

If anything, it will prompt more people with regular jobs to moonlight on the weekends to get ahead in life.

nosparkplugs
03-09-2008, 05:23 PM
bruno rs, I agree with your frustration, we have lost track of the founding fathers vision, we live in a Global economy now, we are an Oil dependent economy , our business's rely on the diesel or gasoline engine for doing the majority of our labor costs. This is why I think the most efficient engine (diesel), although not the cheapest, but it will pay for itself overtime. Be careful with the WVO conversion on your diesels, any water or other debris in the WVO oil will plug filters,fuel injectors, and could cause damage to the engine.

bruno_rs
03-09-2008, 07:12 PM
bruno rs, I agree with your frustration, we have lost track of the founding fathers vision, we live in a Global economy now, we are an Oil dependent economy , our business's rely on the diesel or gasoline engine for doing the majority of our labor costs. This is why I think the most efficient engine (diesel), although not the cheapest, but it will pay for itself overtime. Be careful with the WVO conversion on your diesels, any water or other debris in the WVO oil will plug filters,fuel injectors, and could cause damage to the engine.

no sparks, i agree with you 100%... diesel is the way to go, accross the board period! i really miss my diesel jaguars... they would run ALL DAY on less than 5 gallons of fuel. unfortuanetly, they could not compete (time and/or stripping) with my zero turns, therefore i let them go... i decision i've been regretting. as far as the wvo conversion is concerned, i intend to invest in a complete "brew and filtration" system which will rid the wvo of water and/or contaminents, thus creating my own boidiesel... if all goes well it should be clean enough to run straight from the collection tank. additionally, just to be safe, i will install the heat AND filtration systems in my trucks as well. for some of these other guys to not see and/or recognize the severity of this gas AND economy crisis we are in right now, is alittle disturbing. if our political "hacks" don't do something QUICK AND RIGHT there's gonna be alot of homeowners and/or business owners who will take it upon themselves to do the lawn and/or find someone else to do it "cheaper". without ANY doubt, this is going to hurt is the midsized co's most. i take issue with some of the guys on here saying it'll get rid of the "fly by nighters"... that'll never happen because of their "overhead" and/or LACK THEREOF!!! i wish everyone the best of luck, we're all gonna need it. buckle up it's gonna get rough.

bruno_rs
03-09-2008, 09:07 PM
I don't see high gas prices 'culling the herd' of too many LCOs. If that was going to happen, it would have happened back when gas went from $1 a gallon to $3.

If anything, it will prompt more people with regular jobs to moonlight on the weekends to get ahead in life.

hey hoolie, what you seem to leave out of the equation is, there was <5%unemployment, the economy WAS supposedly "booming", everyone and their sister buying homes, with no money down... "easy/no" credit... and (most importantly) MANY with intentionally inflated (fraudulent) values by unscrupulous lenders!!! is anyone not aware of the "record" # of foreclosures all throughout the country and/or the scores of people simply abondoning their homes and literally "walking" away from them? moreover, there are numerous factors involved in this RECESSION we find ourselves in... it's not just fuel prices. unfortunately, the ridiculous fuel prices have sent us ALL "further down river toward the falls AND with broken ores". further, NO politicians have been screaming and/or doing anything about these price fixing, sc#mbag, monopolies ie. exxon/mobile, bp, etc. unfortunately there is no one to blame but ourselves by not pushing our legislators (years ago) for SERIOUS research and developement of other energy alternatives and/or sources. please... someone... anyone... explain to me why diesel is now more expensive than high test gasoline. seems kind of strange that it would be more expensive, when it takes FAR FEWER steps to refine!!! on top of that there is no shortage... just the unappreciative bast@rds of opec simply turning off the "valves" to falsely inflate the price of crude. seems fair... we risk our soldiers lives (at our own expense), by protecting the saudi's (and now iraqs') when sadamm invaded their country and the aftermath which has followed ever since. how do they show their appreciation?... they jack up our prices AND financially support the very terrorist who are trying to kill us!!! if it wasn't for the usa intervening, there would be NO saudi family and/or saudi arabia period... what a bunch of selfish camelf#ckers. personally, i'm looking forward to the day we no longer need their oil!!! they have NOTHING else to contribute to the world we live in and i'd love to see them try to eat their sand and/or drink their oil, when it is no longer needed and/or worth more than the "dirt" it comes from!!!

Whitey4
03-09-2008, 09:27 PM
I agree, "tightening routes" is a cliche, BUT, if you don't have a freakin route, then only advertise in a small area. This is what I did. I hang the door hangers myself, sometimes hitting the same house twice a month appart. I only have one ad... in a local church bulletin. I only carried 5 accounts over from last year, and most of what I dropped were price shoppers and call when I need you types.

Every door hanger I've put out, I did no driving. Walked out the front door and started hanging them. That is why the 11 new accounts I have are so close by. I still have another 500 or so houses to hit this way. So far, I've gotten 11 customers from 800 hangers. The church bulletin ad has been lousy... not one call.

With a small trailer that can't handle both my new machines at the same time, a BQ 32 and a Husky power rake, I can just drive home. I don't even need to put any gas tanks in the bed. I might be able to get the Husky in the bed... I pick it up tomorrow, and I'll know for sure. The front gate on my trailer drops to level.

I sure don't want to see prices go up though. My business plan has some defenses built in against high gas prices, but it doesn't help my fert apps profit any. Hopefully some low ballers will increase prices.

If one has an established route, it doesn't sound to me like it would be very easy to tighten it.

HOOLIE
03-10-2008, 12:16 AM
hey hoolie, what you seem to leave out of the equation is, there was <5%unemployment, the economy WAS supposedly "booming", everyone and their sister buying homes, with no money down... "easy/no" credit... and (most importantly) MANY with intentionally inflated (fraudulent) values by unscrupulous lenders!!! is anyone not aware of the "record" # of foreclosures all throughout the country and/or the scores of people simply abondoning their homes and literally "walking" away from them? moreover, there are numerous factors involved in this RECESSION we find ourselves in... it's not just fuel prices. unfortunately, the ridiculous fuel prices have sent us ALL "further down river toward the falls AND with broken ores". further, NO politicians have been screaming and/or doing anything about these price fixing, sc#mbag, monopolies ie. exxon/mobile, bp, etc. unfortunately there is no one to blame but ourselves by not pushing our legislators (years ago) for SERIOUS research and developement of other energy alternatives and/or sources. please... someone... anyone... explain to me why diesel is now more expensive than high test gasoline. seems kind of strange that it would be more expensive, when it takes FAR FEWER steps to refine!!! on top of that there is no shortage... just the unappreciative bast@rds of opec simply turning off the "valves" to falsely inflate the price of crude. seems fair... we risk our soldiers lives (at our own expense), by protecting the saudi's (and now iraqs') when sadamm invaded their country and the aftermath which has followed ever since. how do they show their appreciation?... they jack up our prices AND financially support the very terrorist who are trying to kill us!!! if it wasn't for the usa intervening, there would be NO saudi family and/or saudi arabia period... what a bunch of selfish camelf#ckers. personally, i'm looking forward to the day we no longer need their oil!!! they have NOTHING else to contribute to the world we live in and i'd love to see them try to eat their sand and/or drink their oil, when it is no longer needed and/or worth more than the "dirt" it comes from!!!


Things are not the same across the country. I was just reading today, that within a 10 mile radius of my house, the average household income is $113,000. So it's not like people around here are hurting over the price of gas as much as they claim to be. It's the people that are nowhere near that level that have trouble living in this area, and those are the people I can see sticking a mower in the trunk and picking up a few customers to make ends meet.

bruno_rs
03-10-2008, 10:28 AM
Things are not the same across the country. I was just reading today, that within a 10 mile radius of my house, the average household income is $113,000. So it's not like people around here are hurting over the price of gas as much as they claim to be. It's the people that are nowhere near that level that have trouble living in this area, and those are the people I can see sticking a mower in the trunk and picking up a few customers to make ends meet.

hey hoolie, you seem to be missing my point. while i agree things are "not the same across the country", the fact is EVERYONE will (eventually) be affected by these ridiculous fuel prices, if something is not done real soon to correct it. i have to admit, the people within a ten mile radius of my place will not be hurt (too) much as the average income is FAR more than 113k and/or the average home is, at the very least, 10x's that amount. just as our states AND country are diverse... so shall be the affect of this energy dilemma. most of those around me are "heavy hitters" with MANY working on and/or attached "at the hip" to wall street... i can tell you with certainty these p.o.s., selfish, speculators are the main reason for this "energy dilemma" we currently find ourselves in. there is no shortage of oil... just ethics on wall street!!! just as the sub prime lenders are primarily responsible for the housing crisis, the self serving, sc#mbag wall street "speculators" are responsible for this energy crisis. being that they are protected by their "investment" (in oil), they do not care how much you and/or i pay at the pump because THEY'RE "insulated" and making money hand over fist with their (personal) stock in these oil co's AND the CONTROL "they enjoy" over its' so called "demand". unforunately, those on wall street are looked @ as "financial gods" and held to NO standards... insider trading?... happens every minute of every day on (and off) "the street"!!! isn't it funny how all these "finacial experts" are coming up with every excuse in the world for oil to remain high all the while they're "fully vested" AND (personally) bought low... just alittle unethical, in my opinion. it's kind of like hiring a pedophile to watch your kids and their friends at a pool party, with no one supervising. moreover, in our society, oil is not a commodity... it is a necessity!! if our oil supply was cut off tomorrow, how long do you suppose "we the people" would be able to continue living the lives we've become accustomed to? i can tell you, it would not be long and/or pretty! bring this country to its' knees... there's your answer. people need to wake up and get with the program... not alternative and/or foreign, we NEED NEW VIABLE energy sources!!!

TomberLawn
03-10-2008, 03:17 PM
bruno rs, to answer your question about diesel fuel costing more than premium gas. The EPA keeps making stricter standards for diesel engine emissions. You've probably noticed new diesel trucks cost a fortune compared to a similarly equipped gas truck. And in recent years, that gap has gotten larger because of more computers, high-tech turbos, and most recently, diesel particulate filters (soot traps). All these "improvements" were not enough to satisfy the EPA, so they changed the requirements for the fuel itself. Low sulfur diesel has been around for years with a sulfur content of 500ppm. The new ultra-low sulfur diesel is drastically more refined to only 15ppm. That explains some of the cost increase.

Diesel has also seen a demand increase in recent years as more people fell in love with the power and fuel economy of diesel engines. People found out that diesels have come a long way since the failed GM 350 diesel and they are now quiet, powerful, and clean.

We need a good, renewable source of biodiesel. There is high demand for soy beans already, so something else needs to be used. Biodiesel is cleaner burning than even ultra-low sulfur diesel and provides better lubrication to fuel system parts, like the pump and injections, than the older low sulfur diesel.

bill8379
03-10-2008, 04:10 PM
$107 dollars a barrel and climbing. They say this is the highest price ever even with taking inflation into account.

Summer driving season always drives the price up....


I recently had to get a tow truck driver to tow my vehicle about two miles. He charged me $72 and $8 of it was a fuel surcharge. I'm trying to think of a way to delicately put a fuel surcharge in my billing. Gas prices are an unknown and they can skyrocket in the next few months. It's already $5 a gallon in Canada and we have more oil then anybody.

HOOLIE
03-10-2008, 04:45 PM
hey hoolie, you seem to be missing my point. while i agree things are "not the same across the country", the fact is EVERYONE will (eventually) be affected by these ridiculous fuel prices, if something is not done real soon to correct it. i have to admit, the people within a ten mile radius of my place will not be hurt (too) much as the average income is FAR more than 113k and/or the average home is, at the very least, 10x's that amount. just as our states AND country are diverse... so shall be the affect of this energy dilemma. most of those around me are "heavy hitters" with MANY working on and/or attached "at the hip" to wall street... i can tell you with certainty these p.o.s., selfish, speculators are the main reason for this "energy dilemma" we currently find ourselves in. there is no shortage of oil... just ethics on wall street!!! just as the sub prime lenders are primarily responsible for the housing crisis, the self serving, sc#mbag wall street "speculators" are responsible for this energy crisis. being that they are protected by their "investment" (in oil), they do not care how much you and/or i pay at the pump because THEY'RE "insulated" and making money hand over fist with their (personal) stock in these oil co's AND the CONTROL "they enjoy" over its' so called "demand". unforunately, those on wall street are looked @ as "financial gods" and held to NO standards... insider trading?... happens every minute of every day on (and off) "the street"!!! isn't it funny how all these "finacial experts" are coming up with every excuse in the world for oil to remain high all the while they're "fully vested" AND (personally) bought low... just alittle unethical, in my opinion. it's kind of like hiring a pedophile to watch your kids and their friends at a pool party, with no one supervising. moreover, in our society, oil is not a commodity... it is a necessity!! if our oil supply was cut off tomorrow, how long do you suppose "we the people" would be able to continue living the lives we've become accustomed to? i can tell you, it would not be long and/or pretty! bring this country to its' knees... there's your answer. people need to wake up and get with the program... not alternative and/or foreign, we NEED NEW VIABLE energy sources!!!

Honestly, I can't see your point. All I see is one looooooong run-on sentence ranting about oil for the most part. Paragraphs man, paragraphs!!!

My point was simply that high gas prices may attract more people to get into the lawn business, rather than get out of it, as a few people suggested.

bruno_rs
03-10-2008, 05:30 PM
bruno rs, to answer your question about diesel fuel costing more than premium gas. The EPA keeps making stricter standards for diesel engine emissions. You've probably noticed new diesel trucks cost a fortune compared to a similarly equipped gas truck. And in recent years, that gap has gotten larger because of more computers, high-tech turbos, and most recently, diesel particulate filters (soot traps). All these "improvements" were not enough to satisfy the EPA, so they changed the requirements for the fuel itself. Low sulfur diesel has been around for years with a sulfur content of 500ppm. The new ultra-low sulfur diesel is drastically more refined to only 15ppm. That explains some of the cost increase.

Diesel has also seen a demand increase in recent years as more people fell in love with the power and fuel economy of diesel engines. People found out that diesels have come a long way since the failed GM 350 diesel and they are now quiet, powerful, and clean.

We need a good, renewable source of biodiesel. There is high demand for soy beans already, so something else needs to be used. Biodiesel is cleaner burning than even ultra-low sulfur diesel and provides better lubrication to fuel system parts, like the pump and injections, than the older low sulfur diesel.

hey tomberlawn, i hear ya... pretty much everything you say is right on. however, still not convinced why diesel is 25-30 cents higher than high-test. i'm fully aware of the ultra-low sulfer and stricter standards from the epa but that still does not explain the record profits exxon/mobile have been reporting since "jacking" up the price of ALL oil products, used for our daily necessities. why do you suppose natural gas went up, concurrently? there is really no disputing, oil/energy companies ARE being allowed by the government AND with the aid of wall street speculators, to "hold us up" with their filler nozzles and utter GREED! i find it sad and really pathetic, 100 years after rudolph diesel invented this engine, we've gotten no further than fossile fuels to power it. in fact (i'm sure you know) when mr diesel initially demonstrated his engine, it was powered by peanut oil. i agree the diesel is an amazing engine... i have a number of them and one of my favorites is my 1981 vw diesel pickup. that old girl gets 50+ mpg... now ask you, if that little engine was properly "worked" with 2008 technologies, there is no reason why we couldn't pull 100+ mpg out of it. problem is there are too many "fat cats" out there bilking and/or "working" the system... and "we the people" are sitting on our hands AND allowing them to play "their" games... AT our expense! i agree biodiesel is the way to go, as a matter of fact i plan on converting most of my diesels to wvo in the not too distant future. i appreciate and respect your point of view, though... have a good one.

bruno_rs
03-10-2008, 06:15 PM
Honestly, I can't see your point. All I see is one looooooong run-on sentence ranting about oil for the most part. Paragraphs man, paragraphs!!!

My point was simply that high gas prices may attract more people to get into the lawn business, rather than get out of it, as a few people suggested.

hey hoolie, can't make any sense of your point... higher gas prices will ATTRACT more to the lawn care business... care to explain? hows that for being short!

bill8379
03-10-2008, 06:31 PM
hey hoolie, can't make any sense of your point... higher gas prices will ATTRACT more to the lawn care business... care to explain? hows that for being short!

Personally I think the state of the economy will get more people in lawn care. Last month the USA lost 66k jobs but the unemployment rate actually went down because 48k people stopped looking for jobs. You can enter into this business very cheap and basically work under the table as much as necessary.

bruno_rs
03-10-2008, 07:31 PM
Personally I think the state of the economy will get more people in lawn care. Last month the USA lost 66k jobs but the unemployment rate actually went down because 48k people stopped looking for jobs. You can enter into this business very cheap and basically work under the table as much as necessary.

hey bill, you are right... if anything may bring more people into the (smalltime) "lawn cutting" business it will be the loss of jobs... NOT the increase in fuel prices, as hoolio stated. moreover, it will most likely be nothing more than a guy in his pickup truck with a few pieces of "used" equipment, just trying to make ends meet. it would be highly unlikely, for someone who has just lost their job (and can't find another), to roll in and put a hurting on legitimate established lco's. if your services are quality, competition should not be a concern. the point of my last post was just breaking b@lls after alittle mud was thrown at me. i have been in this "game" a long time and have NO doubt i'll be just fine, no matter how many attempt to break into the "field" and/or the price of fuel. just thought i'de throw my .02 in this forum, from an angle no one made mention of. just my opinion, nothing else.

TomberLawn
03-10-2008, 10:47 PM
Don't forget about another major competitor...homeowners. If homeowners have to spend more on everything but aren't getting a raise, they'll have to cut something out. They may decide that since they can't afford to go to the movies every Saturday afternoon anymore, they can now use that time to mow their own yard.
bruno, my grandfather has an Isuzu Pup diesel that gets over 40mpg and he used to have a diesel Chevy LUV truck that got over 40 also. My uncle drove the truck a couple hundred miles on a trip and since the fuel needle hadn't moved he figured the gauge was broken. He stopped to fill up and only put a couple gallons in. He asked my grandfather (his dad) why he didn't tell him what kind of mileage that truck got and he told him "Even if I did, you wouldn't believe it."
I heard about a Mercury sedan that made headlines a few decades ago. It was powered by a Thermo King or similar small diesel engine and drove from Miami to New York getting 55mpg. My grandparents told me they saw it on the news, but they never heard of it again. Big Oil probably bought it so it wouldn't grab too much attention.

bruno_rs
03-11-2008, 09:52 AM
Don't forget about another major competitor...homeowners. If homeowners have to spend more on everything but aren't getting a raise, they'll have to cut something out. They may decide that since they can't afford to go to the movies every Saturday afternoon anymore, they can now use that time to mow their own yard.
bruno, my grandfather has an Isuzu Pup diesel that gets over 40mpg and he used to have a diesel Chevy LUV truck that got over 40 also. My uncle drove the truck a couple hundred miles on a trip and since the fuel needle hadn't moved he figured the gauge was broken. He stopped to fill up and only put a couple gallons in. He asked my grandfather (his dad) why he didn't tell him what kind of mileage that truck got and he told him "Even if I did, you wouldn't believe it."
I heard about a Mercury sedan that made headlines a few decades ago. It was powered by a Thermo King or similar small diesel engine and drove from Miami to New York getting 55mpg. My grandparents told me they saw it on the news, but they never heard of it again. Big Oil probably bought it so it wouldn't grab too much attention.

hey tomberlawn, you're ABSOLUTELY correct about the home and/or business owners taking it upon themselves to do their OWN lawns, in difficult times. i DID mention it, but experts like hoolio "CAN't see my point"... kind of common sense, wouldn't you think? all he could come up with was, my "ranting" and "run on sentences" didn't make any sense (to him). that's another thing that "concerns" me about some "opinions" in this site... gives one an idea of what we're dealing with (in this industry) throughout the country.

the "big 3" have been pulling strings and pushing their weight around ever since they felt the ability to do so. look what happen to tucker back in the 40's. his cars were being produced out of a barn with every option offered by the big three and at or below their BASE model price. moreover, tucker added advanced technology which is still considered cutting edge... aerodynamic/sound reducing doors (cut into the roof), 3rd headlight which followed the steering, search/scan radios, etc. what was the result of his advanced technology and/or ingenuity? the big 3 "lobbied" and DESTROYED tucker, by way of the government. he died a broken man... as did john delorean.

it's never been about what is best for the "common man" and/or the enviroment... it's ALL about those in power holding onto their "positions" and/or wealth... and at any cost! in order to get ahead, you must be willing AND able to think "outside of the box". my rant, as hoolio so called it, was an intent to bring forth an OPINION no one had made ANY mention of. you're not going to catch a big fish in shallow water... gotta go "deeper"... think about it. just my opinion, nothing else.

KS_Grasscutter
03-11-2008, 09:56 AM
I'm not real worried about competing with my customers to do their lawns. They either CAN afford it, no matter what the fuel price is, or can't do it themselves.

Frue
03-11-2008, 10:14 AM
Personally I think the state of the economy will get more people in lawn care. Last month the USA lost 66k jobs but the unemployment rate actually went down because 48k people stopped looking for jobs. You can enter into this business very cheap and basically work under the table as much as necessary.

this is actually mis information, there were alot of people who ran out of unemployment and are now looking for jobs.

Hoss315er
03-11-2008, 01:12 PM
he died a broken man... as did john delorean.


Delorean got it to other illegal business I thought. Didn't he end up in prison?

Turf Commando
03-11-2008, 01:43 PM
Gas prices stink, it's hurting the economy more than the Government will ever admit, then again, I never trust the government.
I also (HATE) how all pumps are prepaid. How do I know, how much gas it will take to fill up my truck, hard to tell when prices change every 10 mins.

If I'm the only one who (HATES) this, I'll shut up..Joe

DiGiTLawncare
03-11-2008, 02:00 PM
try $8,000+ a day. We own a trucking company as well that we operate about 17 trucks so that might have a little to do with it. (They get 5mpg and drive 700 miles a day) That bills fun.

stevenf
03-11-2008, 02:50 PM
Don't forget about another major competitor...homeowners. If homeowners have to spend more on everything but aren't getting a raise, they'll have to cut something out. They may decide that since they can't afford to go to the movies every Saturday afternoon anymore, they can now use that time to mow their own yard.
bruno, my grandfather has an Isuzu Pup diesel that gets over 40mpg and he used to have a diesel Chevy LUV truck that got over 40 also. My uncle drove the truck a couple hundred miles on a trip and since the fuel needle hadn't moved he figured the gauge was broken. He stopped to fill up and only put a couple gallons in. He asked my grandfather (his dad) why he didn't tell him what kind of mileage that truck got and he told him "Even if I did, you wouldn't believe it."
I heard about a Mercury sedan that made headlines a few decades ago. It was powered by a Thermo King or similar small diesel engine and drove from Miami to New York getting 55mpg. My grandparents told me they saw it on the news, but they never heard of it again. Big Oil probably bought it so it wouldn't grab too much attention.

This is exactly why I made the thread. My point was how are we going to average/raise our prices for higher fuel cost, when people wont accept it. They will continue to get stingy with there money.

bill8379
03-11-2008, 04:20 PM
this is actually mis information, there were alot of people who ran out of unemployment and are now looking for jobs.

Yeah I wouldn't doubt it's misinformation, I got it from CNN:laugh:

bruno_rs
03-11-2008, 06:20 PM
try $8,000+ a day. We own a trucking company as well that we operate about 17 trucks so that might have a little to do with it. (They get 5mpg and drive 700 miles a day) That bills fun.

hey digitlawncare, too bad your trucking co. is not the one "cleaning up" here. although your co. has to shell out BIG BIG BUCKS, on a daily basis AND to stay in the game, what more are you getting out of it... other than the fuel surcharge? i'm sure the surcharge you're all are allowed to apply to each delivery is just keeping your heads above water. is it not true the "trucking" industry is allowed, BY LAW, to charge this extra fee?

a buddy of mine has a small trucking/excavation co. 2 tandems, 2 triaxles, hoes, dozers, etc. and even with the fuel surcharge, he's hanging on by his fingertips. for him, all it takes is one customer not paying on time and he's dipping into the equity on his house to make sure "the guys" are paid as well as his creditors. now with the building boom OVER AND DEAD as well as the housing crisis looming, i've never seen him so nervous and "jumpy".

it's not pretty out there right now and for some to say it's no problem, is disturbing. whether or not YOU are hurting "at this moment", if things do not change soon and for the better, you WILL be! ridiculous fuel prices and/or enough people out of work means at least some luxuries must go. what do you think will be one of the 1st? around these parts the 1st is ALWAYS... the lco!!!

i've seen guys who make 7 figures go out and buy their own lawn equipment and do it themselves or pay some knuckledragger hourly, just to save a few bucks. it may take a few years before they realize there was no real savings and lost valuable time "on the course" but, by that time it has taken 2-3 years of wages from the lco. moreover, rarely will they call you back because, they don't want to admit it was a foolish move and/or be seen with "egg on their face".

hopefully most of us, if not all, will make it out of this mess with out too much "bleeding" and/or loss. good luck and be well.

bruno_rs
03-11-2008, 06:41 PM
Delorean got it to other illegal business I thought. Didn't he end up in prison?

hey hoos, yeah, it's true delorean got himself locked up... for alittle bit. not making any excuses for him but, he was trying to save his co. from going under. unfortunately he was "looking for money", got tied up with the wrong crowd and eventually set up. do i feel sorry for him? no, but (like tucker) he was starting to bite into the big 3's sports car sales, they weren't happy and were "gunnin" for him. they lucked out when delorean helped in his own demise. his dealership and estate were about 10 miles from me. the dealership is now a state police headquarters and the estate is donald trumps new golf course.

8307c4
03-11-2008, 07:48 PM
I don't believe there exists a small vehicle solution, that is it's not going to cost less to tow today than what it cost to tow it yesterday.

The only solutions I know of cost MONEY, or take time.
One or the other, but as the price of fuel continues to rise more and more the expensive solutions start to become affordable, how it works.

The rising price of fuel pays for RESEARCH...
Now we can let the scientists do it, or take advantage of the situation.
By looking at our business models and doing our own studies, for example my truck's mpg is tracked 24-7.365
See to me that is crucial, I have to know my vehicle's FE, it tells me where I stand for one.

Then the absolute first thing is keep up on the maintenance, little improves FE better than a vehicle that's all up on its regular maintenance.
With a set of tools and DIY most of these repairs take 30-45 minutes maybe 1-2 hours and the truck is better off.
I'd say 10-20 percent improvement, overall.

Driving, how we drive the truck makes a BIG difference, too.
The most improvement I get is out of DWB and EOC, which involve a light foot and an almost complete brake pedal avoidance.
I'd say another 10-20 percent improvement, overall.

The thing is if you feel sorry for me and my 3/4 ton at 11-12mpg towing don't, because I don't rest until I see 14+ mpg.

bruno_rs
03-11-2008, 10:33 PM
This is exactly why I made the thread. My point was how are we going to average/raise our prices for higher fuel cost, when people wont accept it. They will continue to get stingy with there money.

hey steven, in my opinion it would be professional suicide to continually raise your lawn care "fixed" pricing, to offset your fuel costs and/or keep up with the increases. fyi, the smallest lawn i have is 2 acres and all residential. this season i have increased all my lawns $5-15 depending upon its' size, my profit margin and the expectation that fuel may not stabalize until we hit 4.00/gal. most customers will understand and if they don't... you're probably better off with someone else, anyhow. nothing is worse than a whinny customer, week after week!!!

on the other hand, all your other services can and should be adjusted accordingly. these (other) services are not something "most" home and/or business owners can and/or are willing to do themselves. moreover, these ARE money markers and "normally" not subject to "nickel and diming", by the property owner. increasing ALL your planting, mulching, spraying, fertilizing, etc. can be done without the customer being (as) aware of the increase and/or easily explained, if need be.

your thread is a very good one but unfortunately there really is no "definate" answer to your question. although i and/or some others may get away with increasing our rates, you and/or some others may loose accounts for doing the same. it all depends on your geographic location, clientele, overhead, business plan, etc. what it boils down to is YOU have to do what will work for YOU... not the rest of us. the trick to this industry is being able to size up and read your customers, just as soon as you meet them. good luck to you and everyone else in this forum.

DiGiTLawncare
03-12-2008, 09:40 AM
O I am by no means saying that we have not hurt over the past.... year or so. Fuel is our largest expense in the trucking industry. Of course rates tend to compensate for the fuel prices but if it made it so much better there would not be guys going out of business everyday. Its sad it really is but its what the trucking industry needs. We have been around 30 years and looking forward to another 30 years for sure. It will be tough and things will change but adjustments will just have to be made. Also you have to think about... right now we are paying for $3.60 - 4.00 diesel. We are only getting money in now from 30 days ago when diesel was... 3.20? 40cent jump is a killer when you are only getting rates from 30 days ago when fuel was cheaper.

Personally for my lawncare business I am just waiting for someone to come out with a hybrid one ton that gets 35mpg towing and I will probably be the first on the waiting list!!!! (I WISH)

TomberLawn
03-12-2008, 06:06 PM
Hey Digit, Peterbilt makes a hybrid class 6 truck, but I doubt it gets 35mpg rolling down hill. I think Navistar (International) has been working on a hybrid for UPS.

DiGiTLawncare
03-13-2008, 08:13 AM
Well if they arnt turning 35mpg I will keep my trusty cummins.

mobileboy
03-13-2008, 03:25 PM
I pull a 5x10 trailer with my 2007 Nissan Fronteir V6 (6-speed manual), and get 17 mpgs around town. This motor/trans combo is STRONG for a V6, and unloaded I get 22 mpg on the Interstate @ 73 MPH (20 @85). The truck is rated to pull 6000 lbs and I've pulled over 5000 with it a few times (tandem axle 6x12 full of topsoil) with no problem. It has been a great power/economy call for my needs.

Grassmechanic
03-14-2008, 09:03 AM
I pull a 5x10 trailer with my 2007 Nissan Fronteir V6 (6-speed manual), and get 17 mpgs around town. This motor/trans combo is STRONG for a V6, and unloaded I get 22 mpg on the Interstate @ 73 MPH (20 @85). The truck is rated to pull 6000 lbs and I've pulled over 5000 with it a few times (tandem axle 6x12 full of topsoil) with no problem. It has been a great power/economy call for my needs.

That's right what I get with my Dodge Cummins.:weightlifter:

TomberLawn
03-14-2008, 03:43 PM
I filled up my truck today, took $92 to put it from 1/4 to full. I got 18.7mpg last tank. The computer display said 19.7, but that was averaged from about 3 or 4 tanks of fuel and I've been pulling the trailer a little more lately. I reset the computer at the gas station and averaged 24mpg driving home. That felt good after shelling out nearly $100. If my daily commute to school didn't have so many hills and stop signs, I could probably get 22 pretty consistently, except when towing.

GreenN'Clean
03-14-2008, 04:12 PM
These prices will effect everyone especially customers who will be cutting out lawn service this year just to have the money to pay there basic living expenses...... People are struggling to pay there mortgages let alone high prices of gas and then to pay for electric,gas,food,insurance which all increased but there pay didn't increase so know they are deciding to either pay to have there lawns done or put food on there table for there familes

Sal200
03-14-2008, 10:36 PM
These prices will effect everyone especially customers who will be cutting out lawn service this year just to have the money to pay there basic living expenses...... People are struggling to pay there mortgages let alone high prices of gas and then to pay for electric,gas,food,insurance which all increased but there pay didn't increase so know they are deciding to either pay to have there lawns done or put food on there table for there familes

Tell me about it I already lost 2 this week, one on Tuesday and one today because they found someone cheaper. And unfortunately i only have about 10 accounts so its somewhat of a big loss for me, but what are you gonna do. The one i lost today was a very cheap sob from the beginning, never wanted anything extra done, only fertilizer and gutter cleaning. And every thing was, "How much is it going to cost", bla bla bla. I feel bummed out because just this week, on monday, i sent out referral letters like the one that Sean Adams had in his package, i sent them to all my customers and right after that these two cancelled on me.

PlatinumLandCon
03-14-2008, 10:54 PM
2% Fuel surcharge this year for sure. I just paid $1.179/liter for diesel (thats $4.48/gal) for 105L. Yeah, almost $125 to fill-up.:dizzy:

ranger351w
03-22-2008, 07:25 AM
If you plan on pulling anykind of weight, I would never even consider a v-6. They may get a few more miles per gallon but you are straining the v-6 to much. What if you expand your company? Then you would have wished you would have a v-8. "Thats all I have to say about that" Forrest Gump :laugh::laugh:


I don't know about v6 but I like older trucks and I have a (see signature). It pulls a trailer every day of it's life and travels 15 miles one way to town for jobs and back every working day. Never without a trailer sometimes even with the Massey plus mower. Pulls it as fast as you want to go with 7500 lbs chasing you. 98 percent of the time it is pulling a 725k grasshopper, Quick36,toro 21" self propelled. plus all support equip. Of course they don't make that motor anymore . Great truck and motor. Does all it is asked to do with no strain. gets usual truck mileage.

TomberLawn
03-22-2008, 08:34 AM
Those old 300 inlines were beasts! My old ag teacher had one in his F-150 extended cab long bed. He pulled sheep and hauled round bales in that thing all the time. He finally bought a new Duramax after 300,000 miles on the Ford. Does anybody still offer an inline six gas? They may not have had as much horsepower, but they sure had some torque.

ranger351w
03-23-2008, 08:09 AM
Those old 300 inlines were beasts! My old ag teacher had one in his F-150 extended cab long bed. He pulled sheep and hauled round bales in that thing all the time. He finally bought a new Duramax after 300,000 miles on the Ford. Does anybody still offer an inline six gas? They may not have had as much horsepower, but they sure had some torque.

I can't say but I think the only inline is in the dodge with the cummins. I believe that maybe 93 or 4 ford stopped making the inline. It aint quick but it will pull down to 400 or so rpms, although I avoid that as it puts a strain on the mains.

I do not know what the rest of the world makes.

If ford: still made them I probably would not buy it as I like the older F es. Good trucks and easy to work on.:usflag:

stevenf
03-23-2008, 11:14 AM
You have a 351w in a ranger? What year is it? Im looking to do that or a 302 swap soon in my BII

ranger351w
03-24-2008, 05:37 AM
You have a 351w in a ranger? What year is it? Im looking to do that or a 302 swap soon in my BII


I had a slightly warmed over 351w in a 91 short bed ranger. I sold it about two years ago. I bought the truck new in 91 and put the motor in in 93. drove it for 11 years with it in . The reason I went with the 351 was everyone else was buying the 302 conversion and there were non for the 351. The powers that be for the times said it would not fit,work. Well after much pomp and circumstance and a little torch and welding I was out running things that you would not believe. Dangerous thing though,when you punched it it would do a dance if you didn't hang onto it.

I have a new 351w on the stand I was going to put in it .. The one on the stand is 30 over ,flat top ,balanced, stamped roller rockers,new gt40p assembled heads. never been fully assembled. Would have probably done me in anyway:rolleyes: Sold the truck though.

Don't put a 302 in. why give up 50ci.? 351 is a better motor anyway.
351w

Lovingreen
05-03-2008, 07:58 AM
they have been predicting these prices for a year....Estimate your average fuel cost before the season and price accordingly. Save a fuel surcharge for an emergency such as extreme surge in prices due to hurricane etc...

Ramairfreak98ss
05-16-2008, 01:13 AM
well jersey is around $3.59 regular gas and $4.45+ for diesel. Im at the point, with all the lowballers individuals AND companys out there for 08, that its not feasible to use the diesel truck/enclosed trailer to profit off lawn accounts :/ My route has never been very close to one another so it even worsens the situation. Ill be using the gas trucks for most of the lawn cutting work. I still cant believe guys cutting lawns for $25 or less 1/4 acre developments in NJ where i charge $30 and want to drop them for that price*trucewhiteflag*

cpel2004
05-16-2008, 03:24 AM
Does anyone use BioDiesel, I checked on using it a couple of years ago and it was only like .30 cheaper than regular diesel, too much of a hassle at that time. With that being said how much is Biodiesel going for in your area?

Diesel-1984
05-16-2008, 11:04 AM
I have an 06 ram 1500 with a HEMI with the mutidisplacement sysytem. I get about 13mpg pulling my trailer around with my mowing equipment (ferris is2000x, gravley, blowers etc..) When I put 5 or more yards in it I get about 12. I would love to get a Dodge ram 3500 diesel because I've been talking to friends and they get around 35 highway and about 20 pulling loads. And with it only being 60 or 70cents more a gallon it would be cost effective. I still have a year and a half left on my truck, so I've been trying to work something out with my dealer but it's slow moving. As far as gas hurting me, Ive just been raising my prices, my commitment is to excellent customer service, so I rarly loose customers, in my second year, now with over 40 clients I have only lost one customer to reasons because of a mistake I made.

Drew Gemma
05-16-2008, 11:49 AM
400 a week to cut grass
v 10 dump gets 7.6 mpg empty or loaded down

Ramairfreak98ss
05-16-2008, 05:31 PM
I have an 06 ram 1500 with a HEMI with the mutidisplacement sysytem. I get about 13mpg pulling my trailer around with my mowing equipment (ferris is2000x, gravley, blowers etc..) When I put 5 or more yards in it I get about 12. I would love to get a Dodge ram 3500 diesel because I've been talking to friends and they get around 35 highway and about 20 pulling loads. And with it only being 60 or 70cents more a gallon it would be cost effective. .

Whos telling you about the high mpg on the diesels :p Maybe a little old volvo diesel car gets over 30 but no truck ! I see on average, 10-12mpg pulling any of the heavy trailers, and rarely if the truck is empty and highway cruising at 70mph, touches 17ish range but no more. Theyre surely not getting MUCH better milage, but if you pull 6k-10k with a gas vs diesel, then yeah, the diesel will get better mpg. With the high price difference of diesel, its more beneficial to use a gas truck for everything until it cant pull it easily and then use a diesel truck. Ive heard of guys with 3500 duramax silverados with dump bodies and F550 crew cab landscape body owners getting 12-13ish empty and 10ish with mulch/etc loaded, and in the 8s-9s pulling anything around :/ sucks

KrayzKajun
05-16-2008, 05:45 PM
I hope gas/diesel prices will drive alot of the fly by night grass cutters out of business!!

Organic a go go
05-16-2008, 06:19 PM
We've got gas at well over $4 a gallon which I thought we'd get. I don't bag any of my accounts, mulch everything. I also mulch and/or compost leaves in the fall so Im not taking anything to speak of off customer's property. Consequently I can use a small 4cyl. light duty truck with no trailer. Still paying more than I want to for a fill up but I don't have it as bad as some.

deere615
05-16-2008, 06:34 PM
They aren't killing me but it would be nice if they were a little lower

David Grass
05-16-2008, 07:01 PM
well I get really good gas, tow an aluminum flat trailer, and usually only one mower, depending on my mood and needs, My Walker, or my Hustler super wb, with an isuzu (1991 with 70,000 miles) trooper. I have been doing this for years, and gas is not an issue with me. I know lots of you guys have 2 or 3 tons towing, and obviously this would not work for you. For me, this is economical, and all my accounts are clustered, and within a 3 mile radius. I started this biz almost 20 years ago, and did NOT take anyone outside my area, knowing that economy would become an issue someday. I am just lucky, but a lot of luck is forsight.

escient
05-16-2008, 09:36 PM
Just this year we introduced fuel surcharge "thresholds", meaning at certain 'current' averages, judged by my market through AAA (www.fuelgaugereport.com) we bill fuel surcharges accordingly.

For example - no FS at $3.50 and under.

$3.50 - $7.50 per month per customer
$4.00 - $11.00 per month per customer
$4.50 - $14.50 per month per customer


As this has been greatly decated here - I've found that people understand fuel surcharges, as everyone's charging them nowadays.

What they don't understand is when times are tough financially for so many, you're raising prices.. You can word it however you want but if you say "due to costs we have to raise prices" you're the first "expendable" service a customer has.

At least with the fuel surcharge YOU know that the money's gonna come in, cuz gas sure as hell ain't going down.

but to the customer they understand that if it DOES come down, then the surcharge goes away.

Makes you as a LCO look more honest and reputable than some guy jacking up prices...

nosparkplugs
05-16-2008, 11:41 PM
I have only read posts on gasburners "whining" about the price of gasoline, maybe it's because you guys are filling up more at the pump, and your MPG suck when towing, but gas is cheaper right, great theory. The only time I complain is when I have to fill up a gasoline ZTR or 2-stroke handheld. While i spend more to fill up my Diesel, the fuel lasts for 4 days on average regardless of weight towing or our geographical area covered, and the Cummins will suck the paint off your truck as I pass you getting better MPG. If i have to fill up early; it's because I'm logging more hours behind the wheel; which is servicing new lawn maintenance customers or giving estimates.

cpel2004
05-17-2008, 12:41 AM
Nosparkplug I could care less if it took you two weeks before you had to fill up your truck. The problem is not how much you spend but how much is your customer willing to spend once every one pass on their cost to them. My problem is I dont know at what prices will gas start to flat line. I think right now most people feel that way I do, if I only knew then I could plan for it, but everyday the sucker keeps going up and up. Is $8 per gallon the sweet spot, who knows?

escient
05-17-2008, 01:35 AM
I have only read posts on gasburners "whining" about the price of gasoline, maybe it's because you guys are filling up more at the pump, and your MPG suck when towing, but gas is cheaper right, great theory. The only time I complain is when I have to fill up a gasoline ZTR or 2-stroke handheld. While i spend more to fill up my Diesel, the fuel lasts for 4 days on average regardless of weight towing or our geographical area covered, and the Cummins will suck the paint off your truck as I pass you getting better MPG. If i have to fill up early; it's because I'm logging more hours behind the wheel; which is servicing new lawn maintenance customers or giving estimates.

The whining is because gas is the norm.. most people have gas - and for good reason. Diesel buyers are unique, though not always 'smart'.

Ever wonder why the Maroney label on the diesel trucks don't have MPG ratings on them? Don't ever fool yourself into thinking that diesels pump out 5 or more MPG's than gas trucks.

Grassmechanic
05-18-2008, 01:00 PM
Don't ever fool yourself into thinking that diesels pump out 5 or more MPG's than gas trucks.

Mine does.

'97 cummins -22mpg

93' f-250, 300-6, 5 speed - 15mpg