Do you plow snow?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Landscraper1, Jan 23, 2013.

  1. CreativeLawncareSolutions

    CreativeLawncareSolutions LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,025

    The dang weather people got me all excited this morning...we only got an inch. Oh well.

    I started out like you. Doing residentials with sidewalks and such. It's great money. Now I don't even have to get out of my truck. Work hard to get those cushy commercial jobs. You'll actually probably make less per hour...but you won't even have to wear a coat. Hell, I plow in flip flops. Seriously.
     
  2. lawnsforless

    lawnsforless LawnSite Member
    Posts: 1

    I currently do a small business in snow blowing during the winter months. I do not plow due to the amount of money it would cost to repair my truck to handle the weight and operation of a plow as well as the added cost of the snow plow. So instead of spending thousands of dollars for less than 1,000 I got a 24 inch snow blower and a 30 dollar shovel.
    On average a drive takes 10 minutes or less from the time I take the blower off the truck and put it back on the truck. So yes it takes longer than plowing, but the gas savings and truck wear and tear savings are worth it.

    I can do 10-15 houses and sidewalks on a tank of gas with the snow blower, which costs me roughly one dollar to fill up. That is about 10 cents to 25 cents of fuel cost per house( not including travel time).

    I hope to next year make enough in the other months to not do snow removal, because I hate the on call the entire winter, for not enough money to justify it. It is a risk because other outfits can come in and take the business in the other seasons from you if they do a great job plowing, but that is just that much more incentive to take extra good care of them every chance you get.

    You can find more information about our snow and other services at:
    lawnsforless.biz
     
  3. LandFakers

    LandFakers LawnSite Fanatic
    from CT
    Posts: 6,229

    I have a buddy who I drive for. He just has me take care of 4 lots, 2 walmarts, and a liquor store and lumberyard. The walmarts want black ground 24/7 and Im happy because I usually can get 20 or more hours per storm, and I dont have to worry about trucks and breakdowns. Ill be doing this for aslong as I can
     
  4. Darryl G

    Darryl G LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,033

    Warning, warning, warning!! You sound like me when I first started plowing. If you're taking 18 to 20 hours to do your route with the type of storms we've had in the last couple years, you're wayyyyy overbooked in my opinion. If we get a blizzard, you are screwed. You will not be able to get to your accounts during the storm, so you'll be doing all of them with 18 inches or so of snow on them. It will take you 3 or 4 days, if your truck survives! You need to tighten and weed out that route and keep it under 10 hours for a normal storm...just an opinion from someone who's been there. If anything, that second truck should be a backup....
     
  5. jrs.landscaping

    jrs.landscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    from Maine
    Posts: 2,716

    I agree with Darryl,
    Any route longer than 10 hrs is pushing it during those 12"+ Noreasters. The Noreaster this year rendered our loader useless and we were on site the whole storm. That heavy snow is brutal to move even if you are keeping up with it.
     
  6. CreativeLawncareSolutions

    CreativeLawncareSolutions LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,025

    If we got a foot of snow here people would probably commit mass suicide. We get half an inch and people go crazy. It's hilarious.
     
  7. Darryl G

    Darryl G LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,033

    One thing you may want to do if you're route is that long. Run it in one direction one storm and then run it backwards the next. That way the same customers on the tail end of your route aren't having to wait so long each time. Of course, then all of them are waiting a long time sometimes, but it is something to consider.

    I actually have 3 legs to my route, basically 3 different loops that I can combine into only 2 if I want to. I have some customers that get priority service each storm (my high end lawn care customers) and some that are always on the tail end (my low budget seniors), but I do reserve the order of the ones I run in between them.
     
  8. Darryl G

    Darryl G LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,033

    I was down in Dallas one time when they got a dusting. I found it histerical the way they reacted...it was like the apcocalypse was upon them! :laugh:
     
  9. CreativeLawncareSolutions

    CreativeLawncareSolutions LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,025

    Every carton of milk and loaf of bread in the Dallas/Fort Worth area was sold out in 10 minutes flat. Haha....that's how it is here too.
     
  10. GQLL

    GQLL LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 845

    Virginia doesn't get much snow but when we do people pay big money to get it removed. We have a plow on one truck and 2 track loader that we run pushers on. Yes it cost money to get in to it but one good storm and it all paid for.
     

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