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pull or push aerator?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by kayakn, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. kayakn

    kayakn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 35

    i plan on aerating and seeding some of the lawns in my neighborhood in september. when i rent a aerator, should i rent a walk behind(i would have to walk it around my neighborhood), or, should i get the tow behind(i could pull it behind my hustler).

    PUSH-i would have to walk it around my neighborhood
    -maybe it wouldnt pack the plugs down

    TOW-easier to get around the neighborhood
    -might pack down the lawn and plugs
    what should i rent???

    Also, when you aerate, do you tell your customer to water before you come or do you just do it while the dirt is dry?
  2. david shumaker

    david shumaker LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 721

    Walk behind aerators are hard to push around, especially up hills. If the houses are all in a row on the same block, it might be allright. If the ground is hard, you do not get a very good plug. I tell customers to water ground first, if it is hard. If ground is too wet and muddy, you don't get a very good plug, either. Aerator works best when ground is in between. Spike aerators just pack the soil....just the opposite of the end result you want. Tow behind core-aerators are probably good for large wide open yards, but can't get into tighter areas. I've never used a tow behind, so I don't know how well they work. I've got a Plugr 800. It's good for larger flat yards, but I would rather have the smaller model for small to medium yards. My Plugr is hard to push up on the trailer and I wouldn't want to push it along the street. They make a sell-propelled hydraulic model which cost more, but you would have to do alot of aerating to make it pay for itself.
  3. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,776

    Spring and fall are the recomended times of year to aerate. If you do it once then fall is better as it helps root growth for the winter time. Do it in the middle of the season and you might have some issues, or no good results. I don't think I've seen any lawn company do any aerations in the summer.

    Usually the push ones are self propelled, so you won't have any problems getting around the neigborhood. I know Ryan aerators have a front drum that is chain driving and when you lock it up you can get it around easily.

    I never liked the idea of a pull behind one. It seems like with the turning, (which is harder) and pulling that your compacting as much soil as you are aerating.

    My favorite is the aerators that go on the front of the Grasshopper mower. It "rips" and lifts the sod very nicely.
  4. RonB

    RonB LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 429

    David - I have a BB 742 that weighs almost 500 lb. No way I was going to push that on the trailer. WalMart sells a Masterlock brand winch for about $50! I mounted the bracket to the trailer floor but keep the winch in the truck, even ran a hot from the battery to a trailer wire harness to the back of the truck - just plug it in. It's kinda slow but alot better than straining your guts out.
  5. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,583

    What are you guys charging for core aeration, seeding and top dressing?

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