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ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 05:31 PM
Hey guys,
I was at my dealer yesterday and he told me that if I wanted to make easy money before mowing season I could do aeration.
He told me that it pays really well like $40.00 for a regular lawn (back included in the $40) and I figured that if I could pick up only 10 lawns I could make $400.00/day.
Some of you guys are prolly thinking but where would you get the aerator?
A:I would get the aerator at my home depot rental shop.

Just wanting to know your thoughts about this aeration stuff and if it is really worth it?
Thanks agian for your help!:waving:

jaybow
01-14-2012, 05:41 PM
Sure, if you are doing landscaping at some point people are gonna request that their yard be aerated. It is however a little more work on your body then mowing. I think its a good idea for a landscaper to have an aerator, the last thing you want is some other landscaper coming around possibly taking the mowing from you also. And like with any business you need yo be as well rounded as possible to take care of your customers needs.

MensingMowingPlus
01-14-2012, 05:42 PM
Core aeration greatly improves turf quality by reducing soil compaction, which helps gas exchange in the soil and also makes overseeding easy. Im guessing you are in the south then if you were told to do it in the spring, best time for cool season grass is the fall. Around here it is a must for high end properties and usually rolled into contracts. You want to make a couple of passes in different directions to get the best results, usually I charge around double the cost of a mowing. Normally I seed and fertilize at the same time so that ups the price too.

ringahding
01-14-2012, 06:30 PM
If you own a lawn care company and lawn care is one of your main services, you should off core aeration. We highly recommend aeration every year, some companies suggest twice a year.

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 08:37 PM
BUMP!!! to the top:):)

fireman gus
01-14-2012, 08:41 PM
I would rethink the price. Here we normally charge 3 times the regular mowing rate. It is hard, tiring work and with a small aerator I don't know if you can do 10 yards a day. We use a small self-propelled one in yards we can't use our Z-Rater on. With the Z-Rater on our Walker and using the small aerator we can do up to 15 yards a day.

Gilmore.Landscaping
01-14-2012, 09:11 PM
OK, here the gig. There are lots of these companies around that do aeration only in the spring, they are mostly students and run door to door selling the service and providing it on the spot. That's where the real money making is. Although most cities its actually against By-laws to do sales door to door so you will have to be prepared for that or pay the city for their Outdoor Sales permit, which is very expensive and usually only good for about a week.

Loading up your truck and trailer after every lawn is not the way to do it. you need to charge alot more to get the same return. Most people don't see the difference in quality aeration (unless you destroy their lawn) so forget selling that you will do a better job, its all about the price. In this case usually the lowballer does win.

Don't count on home chepo. I tired that one year, is was a waste of my time. First most store don't let you book the machine, so its first come first serve. Second since the machine is out almost everyday being used by inexperience home owners it gets abused and not properly serviced or repair, so there are lots of break downs.

If your serious about it, look into buying one. Its anywhere from 3-10k depending on the model but it will pay for itself quickly if you can get the clients. They are pretty rugged if you treat them right so they should last many years.

Where about are you if you don't mind me asking

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
01-14-2012, 09:15 PM
Billy Goat has a fairly affordable machine for 2200 or so....
Posted via Mobile Device

Gilmore.Landscaping
01-14-2012, 09:19 PM
That is cheap. Although there are more then a number of issues with that just looking at the specs. That's for another thread.

jsslawncare
01-14-2012, 09:25 PM
I wish it were that easy.

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 10:21 PM
OK, here the gig. There are lots of these companies around that do aeration only in the spring, they are mostly students and run door to door selling the service and providing it on the spot. That's where the real money making is. Although most cities its actually against By-laws to do sales door to door so you will have to be prepared for that or pay the city for their Outdoor Sales permit, which is very expensive and usually only good for about a week.

Loading up your truck and trailer after every lawn is not the way to do it. you need to charge alot more to get the same return. Most people don't see the difference in quality aeration (unless you destroy their lawn) so forget selling that you will do a better job, its all about the price. In this case usually the lowballer does win.

Don't count on home chepo. I tired that one year, is was a waste of my time. First most store don't let you book the machine, so its first come first serve. Second since the machine is out almost everyday being used by inexperience home owners it gets abused and not properly serviced or repair, so there are lots of break downs.

If your serious about it, look into buying one. Its anywhere from 3-10k depending on the model but it will pay for itself quickly if you can get the clients. They are pretty rugged if you treat them right so they should last many years.

Where about are you if you don't mind me asking


I am in Toronto. I see that you are in Kitchener by looking at your website.:canadaflag:

BTW...
Great response. It will help me very much :)

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 10:29 PM
Billy Goat has a fairly affordable machine for 2200 or so....
Posted via Mobile Device

Dealer has a Ryan (Lawnaire 28)
for 2,300 thought of getting that one if I was gonna buy one (prolly gonna get one)
pretty nice specs:
HONDA GX200
SELF PROPELLED
AERATING WIDTH 28''
24,000 SQF/HR
404 LBS

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
01-14-2012, 10:32 PM
That's not bad must be used, you can always find a Classen or Bluebird used for a grand that will do the job just fine too...
Posted via Mobile Device

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 10:36 PM
That's not bad must be used, you can always find a Classen or Bluebird used for a grand that will do the job just fine too...
Posted via Mobile Device

Brand New!
I know I know it's like a giveaway price:clapping:

Gilmore.Landscaping
01-14-2012, 10:38 PM
that's a steal...if you don't buy it I will!!!

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
01-14-2012, 10:38 PM
Yeah wow lol
Posted via Mobile Device

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 10:44 PM
that's a steal...if you don't buy it I will!!!


The only problem is that he is not getting any until mid-March I would buy it on Monday but he does not have any!!! DARN! :hammerhead:

PS maybe I should have called this thread the cheapest aerator in the world! lol

GravelyGuy
01-14-2012, 10:53 PM
Easy money huh. Lmao
Posted via Mobile Device

Gilmore.Landscaping
01-14-2012, 10:55 PM
Easy money huh. Lmao
Posted via Mobile Device

Its definitely not "EASY Money" but it can be "FAST Money", you do have to work your ass off and take alot of crap and deal with the worst, but it can be worth it.

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 10:58 PM
Its definitely not "EASY Money" but it can be "FAST Money", you do have to work your ass off and take alot of crap and deal with the worst, but it can be worth it.

True That!

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
01-14-2012, 11:13 PM
Personally I don't aerate without fertilizing so I think it should be more than just aerating as a stand alone service...
Posted via Mobile Device

CrownScapes
01-14-2012, 11:18 PM
Around my area you have guys doing it for $50 on a acre, not worth my time. I don't plan on buying a self propelled. Model either. I have an agreement with a fertilizing company that does my fert spraying which I get a fee for the same for aeration, get$5 for everyone they do, last year $500 for doing nothing

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-14-2012, 11:26 PM
Personally I don't aerate without fertilizing so I think it should be more than just aerating as a stand alone service...
Posted via Mobile Device

What do you mean by ''I think it should be more than just aerating as a stand alone service..."?

DA Quality Lawn & YS
01-14-2012, 11:32 PM
OP - know the benefits of aeration and if it is needed in your area b/f just rolling out a machine.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
01-14-2012, 11:42 PM
What do you mean by ''I think it should be more than just aerating as a stand alone service..."?

Why do you Aerate? What is the benefits of Aeration? Do you even know why you are aerating, its purpose, benefits, and what else is involved in the equation for proper turf maintenance and health? If you don't have all these answers, then you shouldn't be performing this service, its more than just pulling plugs out of the ground....
Simply pulling a plug out the ground might do little to correct or remedy the issue the customer may be having with their lawn and why they hired you in the first place....

Buddy Buds
01-14-2012, 11:54 PM
I plug in the fall and overseed cold weather grass. I do warm weather grass in the spring. I also have a regular aerator and I will use it to loosen thatch in my bermuda yards.

ringahding
01-14-2012, 11:55 PM
There are several selling points involved with core aeration (http://www.ringlawncare.com/stillwater-mn-lawn-care-html/), sure. You can sell several services that would go hand in hand with it.

You also have at your fingertips right now the ability to surf the NET and learn. Don't think for a second the guys on LawnSite haven't done the same thing.

Check out Youtube, Wikipedia, DOA(department of agriculture) Most are in this business because they have a real passion.With that being said, most have studied their competition, learned from their competition or just plain ol studied their industry.

Hey man not trying to read you the riot act, clearly it sounds like this IS 4 YOU, just study and perfect this craft we call LAWN CARE. Good luck brother!

mtmower
01-15-2012, 12:56 AM
It's one of the best things you can do to a yard for long term improvement.

I don't pull mine off the truck for less than $75. I get up to almost $250 for yards at a little more than an acre. That being said, if your using the standard $2000 unit that doesn't steer IT IS WORK!! Unless your young and have tons of energy to burn, beware. Ran a Turfco walk behind for a few years and it does a great job but it's medieval torture. It's like running an overloaded wheel barrow with a flat tire or running a 200 lb. push mower. Really the main work is in the changing directions. I almost decided to give it up, but instead bought a stand on rider. It's still some work but night and day. It's nice to make your season start and end further out. More $s. I also dethatch here in the spring which get money coming in before the grass is up and growing.

f50lvr2
01-15-2012, 01:44 AM
Dealer has a Ryan (Lawnaire 28)
for 2,300 thought of getting that one if I was gonna buy one (prolly gonna get one)
pretty nice specs:
HONDA GX200
SELF PROPELLED
AERATING WIDTH 28''
24,000 SQF/HR
404 LBS

Holy crap! Just buy 50 of those and re-sell them, you'll make more than actually aerating with them.

I love aerating, it's a nice break from mowing work and I really do believe in the benefits it provides. The main thing I notice is that it makes the yard much more resilient, especially noticeable on the mower the turf has much less tendency to tear during turns. The money can be pretty good too, because of the drought in our area last year the aeration/overseeding really saved my bacon on the bottom line.

If you think you can consistently get 10 a day you should definitely invest in buying something like the Ryan 28. Just make sure to flag all the sprinkler heads and drain pipes before plugging away:)

mtmower
01-15-2012, 12:00 PM
Just make sure to flag all the sprinkler heads and drain pipes before plugging away:)

X2. I'm getting to the point, if it's a new yard to me, to verbally tell the owners that I'm not responsible for underground items, such as irrigation plumbing, cable and telephone lines, etc. I mark all the sprinkler heads but if the owner offers to do it, I'll knock off $5-$10 due to time savings, and if I hit one that is unmarked I'm not responsible for the repair = x and $s. It's well worth it. Next step may be is to put something in writing. So far in about 5 years of doing it, the only damage I've had was one irrigation line that wasn't low enough in ground which wasn't an issue with the owner. But it could knock out your profit pretty quick if you had one or more a yard.

When you get serious, if your doing it yourself and not paying an employee to do it, buy a ride on. I have a Classen Standare 28 and it's a decent machine. Someone had a used one for sale on here a while back. There was another brand that came out that looks even faster but maybe too big for gates. And then there are the sit down ride on units which size becomes a limitation, such as LT Rich. Not sure if I'd use there aerator but they're company and fertilizer/sprayers are amazing.

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
01-15-2012, 01:36 PM
Thanks guys!
for all the great responses
I am truly benefiting all these responses from you guys
keep em' coming ;)

jslawnscape
01-16-2012, 09:30 AM
I have 3 lesco la-2600 ( i think that this the right model) aerators. I bought them used and they work correctly. But aerating is tough work. I find it hard to retain an employee while expecting them to aerate everyday for a few weeks. I usually hear "this is hard" "my hands hurt" "my back hurts" etc etc. When your guys get sore they start cutting corners you will notice sections of lawn skipped or missed. Im sure Ill get a response on this that I need better employees but lets face it in this field and any field no one is going to work like the owner will. That being said if you are seriously considering aerating and you have the business and funds to support it buy yourself a nice aerator that is easier to operate. Someone said its like running a 200lbs wheelbarrow with a flat tire that is completely true. The turns are the worst, and the straight a ways arnt bad but if you are particular about your work you have to wrestle the thing to keep it straight while holding the handle bar down to keep the plugs at a decent size. Of course you can always "leisurely" walk behind the machine. But then when the customer comes out and sees a bunch of 1/4" plugs you will have to either bs them or re do it. DONT FORGET ABOUT A underground utility clause. I cant tell you how many times I have shown up to aerate and the person claimed they would stake the hidden pet fence and its not done, more wasted time weather you return or wait for them to stake it or stake it yourself or even worse your crew aerates it not knowing there is a dog fence and the home owner comes home to the damn thing beeping and all the sudden it becomes your problem those ARE FUN. I won't aerate anymore without a stake out (here in ny its call 811). The local cable company slits the ground with a spade and shoves the cable wire in the slit. Aerator can def. break that line. A few good things about aerating if you have a good employee he can on a good day do 10 easy (easier) aerates at $100. a piece. The honda motor on my aerators uses hardly any fuel. so 10x100 minus expenses can be a profitable day. good luck !! sorry for any typos or misspelled words or bad grammar not in the mood to proof read

BOSS LAWN 2343
01-17-2012, 04:24 AM
We used 3 lawn tractors and 1 trailer last spring for aeration, not worth the time. All walk behind aerators this year. :clapping:

Scoma24
03-01-2012, 07:12 PM
I have 2 walk behind Pluggers. They work wonderful. I usually do it for $60 for an avg. Size yard. Sell them seed and starter fertilizer if you can. We made $1000 a day this past fall. I am going to give it a try this spring because eof the drought we had in Missouri last fall.

SOONERS222
03-03-2012, 09:47 AM
I bought a ryan on ebay for $1300 three yrs ago... I have made over $12000 so far. Its a little work but all n all its ez money. do it

jbell36
03-03-2012, 01:45 PM
aerations usually run just about 3x a mow for us, depending on the customer...i would say usually $90-120 for an average aeration...we also haven't done a whole lot, maybe 25 last year...this is something we are definitely going to pick up, looking at the exmark/toro ride on...then we might even be able to drop the price just a little and go for volume...but aerations need to be price at at least 2x a mow

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
03-03-2012, 01:56 PM
Thanks for bumping the thread SOONERS222 ;)

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
03-03-2012, 01:58 PM
aerations usually run just about 3x a mow for us, depending on the customer...i would say usually $90-120 for an average aeration...we also haven't done a whole lot, maybe 25 last year...this is something we are definitely going to pick up, looking at the exmark/toro ride on...then we might even be able to drop the price just a little and go for volume...but aerations need to be price at at least 2x a mow

Ii think that an eXmark aerator would be awesome if you do a lot of aerations/ yr.

jbell36
03-03-2012, 02:08 PM
Ii think that an eXmark aerator would be awesome if you do a lot of aerations/ yr.

yeah, there isn't a better aerator out there...this one can fit into back yards, it pokes up to 5 inch holes which is insane, and it hauls ass, like 8 mph...that's as fast as a mower at full speed...it's also $9,000 which is ridiculous, BUT if you really did that many aerations you would make that back in no time

you also have to keep in mind that aerations are THE hardest part of lawn care...if you had a stand on that would not be an issue anymore

White Gardens
03-03-2012, 02:48 PM
Buy an aerator if you need to, but until then you can rent.

I may have $300.00 in renting an aerator in the past 5 years. And maybe in another 5 years I can justify buying one.

The majority of the time, most lawns I deal with are in over-all healthy shape, so there is no need for aeration.

The other times, I only aerate in the fall when recommended. Rarely do I offer spring aerations unless the health of the turf is in pretty bad shape.

....

teye69
03-16-2012, 02:04 PM
I have a Ryan Lawnaire V and is like new bought it used for $1750.00 last fall.
It does not leave plugs. The unit makes nice clean holes about 3 inches deep but no
plugs. Does anyone have a suggestion as to what I might do to correct this issue? Thanks in advance

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
03-16-2012, 06:14 PM
I have a Ryan Lawnaire V and is like new bought it used for $1750.00 last fall.
It does not leave plugs. The unit makes nice clean holes about 3 inches deep but no
plugs. Does anyone have a suggestion as to what I might do to correct this issue? Thanks in advance

Are you positive you have the tines engaged/Lowered?? Tines plugged solid with dirt that may be hard a rock??

teye69
03-16-2012, 10:47 PM
Tines are lowered with the arm taken down and tines are in the turf. The tines were clean and bright and shiny until the first pass and the tines are now full of earth and the aerator is making very nice 3 inch holes but the plugs are not available because the tines are not releasing the earth in from the first pass.

NEW CITY LAWN CARE LLC
03-16-2012, 10:50 PM
Tines are lowered with the arm taken down and tines are in the turf. The tines were clean and bright and shiny until the first pass and the tines are now full of earth and the aerator is making very nice 3 inch holes but the plugs are not available because the tines are not releasing the earth in from the first pass.

Hmmm, weird..... Super wet ground?

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
03-17-2012, 10:32 AM
I have a Ryan Lawnaire V and is like new bought it used for $1750.00 last fall.
It does not leave plugs. The unit makes nice clean holes about 3 inches deep but no
plugs. Does anyone have a suggestion as to what I might do to correct this issue? Thanks in advance

Is everything working?
Go and throughly inspect the aerator.
Go and throughly inspect the engine.
What engine is it?
I can help you if you tell me all/most of this.

teye69
03-25-2012, 01:19 PM
I need help. I bought a Ryan Lawnaire V aerator 2006. In great shape. Engine runs fine. Aerator moves great and the tines roll well. It will not leave plugs. I have sharpened the tines, I have cleaned the tines with a brush. It weights penalty and I even filled the roller with water plus put a 40 pound bag of sand on the aerator and still no plugs. I have some photos. Please advise. Thanks in advance.

ALEX'S LANDSCAPING
03-26-2012, 05:28 PM
Have the tines been replaced since 2006?
If not, then the tines are most likely worn out, even if they were sharpened and cleaned.

RigglePLC
03-26-2012, 08:52 PM
Always operate the machine in one of the forward gears. Double check the tines--are they installed backwards? Does this happen on clay soil? Same on sandy soil? Wet or dry? How deep are the holes? how much weight?