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Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I pay to have my stumps ground out when I can just put a flower pot on them and let them rot?
  I can think of many reasons:

Stumps are trip hazards and homeowners are liable. What is the deductible on your home owners insurance?

Stumps are an eyesore to the homeowner and your neighbors.

Stumps rot slower than you think… I’ve ground some over 10 years old.

Rotting stumps attract termites and all homes have wood framing.

Yellow Jackets love to nest under them and their stings hurt like the dickens not to mention that some people are allergic to their stings.

Snakes often take up residence in rotting stumps…I cut snakes out of stumps every year.

Stumps can break the crankshaft on your mower if someone runs over it.

If you can handle one or all of the above, maybe you can let it rot.
How big of a stump can you grind?
  We can grind any size (diameter) stump you have as long as the stump is less than 24" in height. The largest stump I have personally ground was 94" across (7ft 10 inches.) If your stumps are taller than 24 inches we have to cut them down lower or you can save some money if you can cut them.
What do you do with the wood chips?
  The wood chips or mulch belongs to the property owner. Depending on the customer's preference, we can rake it off to the side, or rake it into a pile over where the stump was originally removed.
Can I use the chips for mulch?
  Yes you can. Wood chips make excellent mulch for island or natural areas. But use caution when mulching around plants and shrubs not to mulch over 2" thick, or within several inches of the base of your plants. Pine mulch also works very well around Azeleas.
Will those roots continue to grow?
  Yes, unless cut off from the base of the stump system. Some species of trees will go into a survival mode and start to grow sprouts or shoots along the path that the roots travel. In this case the root system should also be ground out.
Can those roots damage my foundation?
  If a tree with a large root system has been allowed to grow too close to a house, it could result in some foundation damage and can cause basements to leak. I have removed stumps and roots systems close to foundation pillars on exterior decks where the root system actually raised the elevation of the deck which prevented the home owner from opening the door to get to the deck. Trees with large root systems includes, oak, maple, sweet gum, sycamore, poplar, river birch, and Bradford pear to mention a few.
Could the roots be responsible for my concrete buckling?
  Yes, if you have a large tree with an extensive root system, close to your sidewalk or driveway, they are capable of breaking and buckling the concrete.
What about my underground utilities?
  Building contractors are notorious for planting beautiful trees where they think they look the best. Many times, however, it is right next to or on top of your underground utilities, not a good move for the home owner, who may at a later date, have to cut the tree and have the stump and root system removed. Not to mention some fibrous tree roots may, over a period of years, seek out your water or septic lines for a drink. We have the utilities located, as required by Georgia Law (no cost to the homeowner), and take the necessary steps to prevent damage to them.
Can you get into my fenced-in back yard?
  If your fence gate is at least 35" wide, I can get through it without removing any portion of your fence.
Will your machine damage my lawn or sprinkler system?
  No. My self-propelled stump grinder only weighs in at about 1,000 pounds, and has excellent weight distribution on balloon tires, Its about like operating your riding mower over your lawn. Unlike the 4 - 5,000 pound monster grinders which require large 4x4 trucks to back across your lawn, or the heavy self propelled track machines which can rip your turf while turning, my self-propelled unit with balloon tires is extremely lawn friendly.
How deep can the machine grind?
  My machine can grind 12 inches deep on flat ground and with some effort. It can go deeper, however, it is not usually required.
Can I plant another tree in the exact spot where the stump comes out?
  Arborist recommend against it however it is ok to plant one a few feet from that spot in any direction.
What does your cost include?
  Besides the obvious, time, labor, gas and expertise required to do a job, there are many other costs. Business license, liability insurance, transportation to and from the work site, vehicle insurance, equipment maintenance (including frequent replacement of carbide tipped grinder teeth), advertising, and phone bills. So you are actually getting a lot for your money.
Can’t I just rent a machine and do it myself?
  Yes you can, just reserve a machine at your local big box orange (HD) store, get up early on your day off, use your car or truck (with trailer hitch) to pick it up, give them your $200 (180 for machine + 20 for insurance), remember all the details of operation covered in your extensive 5 minute instruction lesson, take it home, get it off the trailer and start sweating. If the machine keeps going dead, its not the machine it’s the operator, if you insist it’s the machine...take it back they will give you another machine if its not already rented (another trip to the big box), if its going slow and you get the feeling you are beating the stump with a hammer…you are…the teeth are dull from the guy who rented it before you (you didn’t think he was going to dig out all the underground rocks, brick, or concrete he was hitting did you….or that the store was going to replace $60 worth of teeth every time it gets returned did you?)…one of my recent customers who rented a machine took it back and told them he thought the belts need adjustment…the guy at the store told him “you are a maintenance type guy…here’s what you do to adjust the belt…” I bet that guy didn’t know if you don’t do it right you’ll ruin the upper and lower bearings and will break the poly chain…that’s a $1,100 repair…I wonder if that insurance you pay for covers that???? It’s now 2 PM you are hot, hungry and frustrated that you have beat 3 small stumps down to ground level (just 8 or 10 more inches to go) and the other 7 stumps will just have to wait because you have to go fishing, hunting, bowling, golfing, shopping, or whatever it is you enjoy. But you still have to clean the machine, gas it up and take it back to the big box.

Yes, you can rent one and try to do it yourself….or just call me and for most small jobs pay me less than you would to rent one. Wouldn’t you rather just relax on your time off or do your fun thing and not go through the frustration depicted above.

Some of my best customers (now friends) rented a machine once. Give me a call and we’ll both have an enjoyable day.