Hourly cost of your mower?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by RonB, Feb 26, 2006.

  1. RonB

    RonB LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 427

    What does your mower cost to operate per hour? I'm asking about fuel, maintenance, depreciation, etc., not what you charge when operating it.
    And mention what brand/model too. Doesn't matter if it's a ztr or w/b or 21.

  2. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,567

    Interesting nobody is responding yet we seen many guys raising prices because gas prices went up.
  3. RonB

    RonB LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 427

    geez - me too.

    I was looking for some actual cases but can estimate fairly close -

    $8000 mower with 1000 hour life = $8 hr.
    Gallon of gas p/h - 2.50 Guess it'd depend on engine size.
    maintenance ? (.25)

    $11 p/h sound about right? I reckon if it last 2000 hrs. the cost would be around half that.

    But I'm looking for some compairsons between w/b, ztr different engines ..
  4. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,570

    we estimate our mowers on 1500 hrs. although we always get at least 2K on them
    We estimate out cost per hour at about $8.00/hr
  5. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,845

    A agree with the above to a point. First of all I base my projections on 2000 hrs. and my mowers after completely set up are $14,000 list on average, (One is less new fully set up, and one is more new fully set up) which is $7. Actually, I run them for 4000 hrs, but the repair bills are more then, so the cost remains $7. This figure may be high, but I like to estimate costs high, and profits low. That way at the end of the year, I hopefully am surprised at the bottom line. They burn 4/5 ths of a gal per hr, so between fuel and oil @ $3, I figure a total of $10.

    One must realize though, that even with 4000 hrs, these mowers will be worth something on the next trade for new, so in theory, the next tractor setup will be no more than $14,000 even if the new ones are more in three years.

    We expect these units to average $150 per hr. total when they are both running. The bigger one does more like $90 and the smaller one is about $60, However thru some improvements This coming year will probably result in $170 per hr.
  6. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,373

    That's true in two aspects. The first mower you buy, and only if at the end of your 1000 hours you park it, never to trade, sell or part it out.

    If you trade it, it should still be worth about $4,000 trade value, depending on dealer.

    If you sell it, you should still get $3,000-3,500 for it, if you want to sell it quickly, more if you don't care when you sell it.

    Now, the next mower is only going to cost 1/2 that, so you're looking at an hourly rate more like $4-5 / hour.
  7. Drew Gemma

    Drew Gemma LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,508

    25hp 52in deck ferris 1500z about 9.00 last years fuel prices
    17hp 52in deck exmark hd wb about 5.00 lat years fuel price

    total cost divide by total hours equals cost of machine per hour
    then figure fuel per hour
    x amount of hours equal cost of oil change
    x amount of hours equal so much grease/ and washing
    every so many hours you need to factor in repairs of common things
    such as
    belts (400hrs new belt at 20 bucks so belt cost .05 per hour)
    air filter
    blades plus sharpening

    to do this create a maint log for each piece of equipment and get each piece on a regular schedule. I go over everything each week to look for possible problems.
  8. jtkplc

    jtkplc LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,656

    There was an article in Lawn and Landscape magazine about figuring price per hour of your equipment. Some of these numbers are rough estimates, like fuel usage, where I don't have exact numbers. This upcoming year my goal is to keep much better records of everything, including fuel consumption. This is copied straight out of Excel:

  9. South Florida Lawns

    South Florida Lawns LawnSite Platinum Member
    from usa
    Messages: 4,783

    I would really have to break out the pen and paper on this one.

    I will give it some thought tonight and sorta add things up to give a rough estimate.

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