1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Not to worry. Check out the archived thread of the Q&A with Ken Hutcheson, President of U.S. Lawns, and the LawnSite community in the Franchising forum .

    Dismiss Notice

Customers want different cut heights what to do on site.

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Rll131, Jun 22, 2013.

  1. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 16,985

    It might be worth while to invest in a cordless impact wrench.
  2. echo

    echo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,686

    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. Tom-N-Texas

    Tom-N-Texas LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 370

    I didn't say all heights would work for all people; of course different homeowners would have different preferences.....that's beside the point: what I'm saying is that grass cut at 2 1/2 inches will need to be cut just as quickly as grass cut at 3 inches. Cutting a lawn lower will not somehow magically give you more time between cuts.
  4. echo

    echo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,686

    Was directed at herler not you.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. OakNut

    OakNut LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,077

    I have to keep reminding myself that there must be areas where finding work is SO difficult that you have to take on these types of clients.

    I really don't care for the city, but at LEAST I have the option of turning down anything I don't want to do because there are tons of other GOOD clients out there to work for.

    "Cut it shorter" is the kiss of death for me. Say it once, fine, I'll explain some things to you about how it's going to be. Say it again, and I'll be moving on.
  6. LifeBack Lawns

    LifeBack Lawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 216

    I totally agree with you oak. I like it in Pittsburgh too by the way. I am with you on those clients. I can pick and choose as well an do not prefer more wear and my name on the 2.5" yard.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  7. kawakx125

    kawakx125 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,128

    Unless you are mowing pristine lawns it is difficult to get a nice cut at 4". Every lawn is different. Changing heights easily is a must for me
    Posted via Mobile Device
  8. Kelly's Landscaping

    Kelly's Landscaping LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,338

    When I first started I made the mistake of getting a belt driven metro 48 with a fixed deck to go with my lazerZ 60. It became obvious in no time at all what a major disadvantage it was not being able to select heights on the fly. When we would do the chem lawns we would often have to let the walk behind sit on the trailer since it cut like crap at 3 inches but we had to have it set like that for the crummy lawns. I wouldn't recommend a fixed deck walk behind to anyone other than a home owner who can set it for his lawn and be done with it.

    It's not uncommon for us to use more than one height on a single lawn. I have a 3 acre one I cut just the other day that has a section we do at 3.5 inches a small section I do at 3.25 inches which then connects to 2 sections I do at 3.75 inches. When those parts are done I move on the lush parts that get cut at 4.25 inches and the lower field is at 4 inches and finally the cliffs on the banks of his river are cut at 3.75 inches. You could not do this lawn with a fixed deck you need the ability to change heights as the conditions require it. Now is it worth it well this one client has 2 other properties and in the 9 years I have been working for him doing mowing only he has managed to pay me in excess of $50,000. So yes having the right equipment is crucial to making it in this trade.
  9. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,144


    It's not that it's inconvenient to change heights, it's not that it's this or that or the other, it's that the list of reasons why I will NOT cut shorter is longer than my arm and I am TIRED of listing it out, especially to the same customer for the umpteenth time.

    The one mistake I ever have made is to agree to cut someone's lawn "shorter," that is the only mistake I ever made in that regard.

    I can't recall the exact year that it happened, but I can assure you it was at least a decade ago that I last cut "shorter" for anyone.
    Because after that fiasco, I swore I would never stoop to that level of stupidity again.

    Now don't ask me to cut it shorter, I am tired of hearing it.

    I don't really like to explain it more than once either, I also feel strongly about it.

    I get that customers didn't call me because they are the experts, I understand they don't get this whole thing about cut heights, but what I also understand is that I hear "cheaper" when they say "shorter." Cheaper, cheaper, cheaper, can you cut it cheaper?

    No sir, asking me to cut it shorter is as good as saying "I am not happy with your services."
    Well if the customer's not happy what am I doing on their property?
    If they're not happy I best be moving.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2013
  10. herler

    herler LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,144

    Oh really, fixed decks don't leave a nice cut at 4"?

    No and no again, but most people don't "get" fixed decks, they think they do, but they don't.
    Most people use floating deck mowers, which is the equivalent of having training wheels.

    Fixed decks are the ultimate grass cutting machines, once you take away all the frills and thrills and bells and whistles and frilly farts that do nothing but cost money and get in the way of progress, what you have left is the most simple grass cutting machine money can buy.

    No hydraulics, no electronic clutches, no clanking chains, no anti scalpers, no electric starts, no nothing but what is absolutely necessary to get the job done...
    But it takes more than one or two cuts to become good at it.
    Really, it takes more than a thousand cuts.

    It takes more than three thousand cuts to become REALLY good with a fixed deck.

    After an operator has several thousand cuts under his or her belt, this is what a lawn looks like at 4" with a fixed deck:
    Read: You can't GET that level of light and dark striping contrast by cutting "Shorter"

    2013-05-15 13.17.34.jpg
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2013

Share This Page