Removing tree stumps is a good investment, whether it’s for safety or aesthetic reasons. After you have decided to remove a stump from your property, the next step is to decide between stump grinding and stump removal.
Understanding the difference between stump grinding and total removal can help you make an informed decision that suits your needs. So let’s get into what stump grinding is!
What Is A Stump Grinder?
Stump grinders are machines which, as their name implies, grind away at the stump after you have cut it down. This machine uses a rotating blade which rips apart the stump as it spins.
There are many types of stump grinders, but most have the same components: an engine and a belt that drives the cutting wheel. A rotating blade is used to gradually remove the wood from the stump.
Different Types Of Stump Grinders
Although stump grinders all have the same purpose, there are a few types that work slightly differently.
- Hand-guided grinding machines are lightweight and small. They are lightweight and portable so they can be easily transported. These stump grinders, also known as walk-behind or handlebar grinders, are easy to use and handle.
- Rear-hitch grinding is also known as wheeled stump grinders. These are great options for larger items that can travel well and attach to trailers or trucks.
- Riding stump grinders are similar small tractors. The driver operates from a chair.
- Skid-grinders are similar to riding grinders. Skid grinders are operated by drivers from either on top or behind the machine. The track treads on these grinders ensure that they provide good traction, won’t cause soil to churn up and don’t leave any major mess.
- Stump grinding attachments are a great option for heavy machines like tractor and chainsaws that need to grind stumps efficiently.
What Is Stump Grinding?
Stump grinding refers to the removal of the stump from a tree, while keeping its roots underground. A professional can use a stump grinder to grind the stump down to the desired depth. This is regardless of whether it’s even with the ground or several inches below. So that your yard doesn’t have unsightly dings and holes, the stump material is used as filler. When operating heavy, loud machinery, it is important to always wear safety gear such as gloves, safety goggles, and earplugs.
To get the stump as low as possible, you will need to use a chainsaw. Next, place the stump grinder about a foot above the stump. Engage the controls and push the stump grinder down and sideways, taking out a few inches at each time. The stump can be pushed down to the ground or you can grind it underground.
The above is just a brief overview of stump grinding. Make sure you do your research and learn more about how to use a stump crusher. Also, make sure you follow all manufacturer’s instructions before starting the project.
Is Stump Grinding A Way To Remove Roots?
The stump roots left behind by stump grinding will eventually decay and the soil will begin to decompose. The stump grinding will not fix problems caused by tree roots that are too large or have damaged a lawn, foundation, or pathway.
Is Stump Grinding The Same As Stump Removal?
While stump grinding eventually will remove a stump, it is not the same thing as stump removal. The former allows tree roots to naturally decay over time. However, stump grinding requires heavy-duty tools such as an excavator and chemicals to get rid of the roots immediately.
While it is more costly and takes longer to remove the stump completely, this may be necessary in cases where the stump or roots pose safety hazards, such as causing damage to your home’s structural integrity.
When To Stump Grind
For most stump projects, stump grinding is an option. Stump grinding is an excellent option if you are looking for a quick solution and don’t need the tree’s roots removed.
Talking with a professional about your stump project can help you find the best method. There are some situations where stump grinding might not be the right choice for you.
What To Do With A Stump Grind?
Most trees you cut are good candidates for stump grinding. However, there are certain situations where a stump should not or can’t be ground. When:
- The stump is difficult to reach and cannot be reached by equipment.
- The stump is surrounded with hardscaping, which can be broken by grinding or removed.
- The stump can be found very close to any foundations or buildings that could be damaged by the process.
- The stump is very close to any other trees or plants that could be affected by the process.
However, stump grinding can be a quick and easy DIY way to get rid of stumps.
Before renting a stump grinder, make sure you assess your needs. Take a note of the trunk’s diameter and what is in the area around it to bring with you to the hardware shop. Workers will help you make the right choice by helping you weigh all of these factors.
There are some safety issues involved in stump removal. This can make it tricky for DIYers. There are some things you can do to ensure stump grinding is a successful DIY project. These are the steps to follow for a safe and successful DIY stump grinding process.
- Get your workspace ready. Get rid of any obstacles, such as outdoor furniture or plants, that might get damaged or become dangerous during grinding.
- Be sure to have the right tool for your job. Consider the age, size, depth and condition of the stump, as well as the surroundings. A riding stump grinder or rear-hitch is better for large trunks, as they are more powerful. However, a hand-guided stump grinder will work well for small to medium-sized trunks in your yard.
- Do not rush the process. Stump grinding takes much longer than other methods of stump removal. If you rush the process, it can cause safety hazards and possibly damage your machine. The process will take between 15 and 2 hours, depending on how large the trunk is.
DIY vs. Hiring A Pro
While stump grinding is an easy project that can be done by most homeowners, it might not be worth it if you have to pay a professional to do the job. A stump grinder can be rented for $190 to $270 per day. Local stump removal professionals charge $170 to $500 for a complete service.
Not to mention that stump grinding involves heavy equipment and can pose safety risks in major landscaping projects. This task can be done on your own, or you can hire a stump grinder company to do it for you.
Alternatives To Stump Grinding
These options are better than stump grinding if you want to remove your stump quickly.
You can remove small stumps yourself if you don’t have the right tools. Although a chainsaw can remove very small stumps, you will not be able to trim them flush with the ground and address any roots.
Shovel Root Removal
To pull the roots out, use a shovel to loosen dirt from your stump. Then use a pulley to lift the stump and roots off the ground. It is possible, even though it is difficult work and unlikely to succeed with very small trees.
Chemical Stump Treatment
Chemical stump removal is another option. Chemical stump removers speed up wood decay. Each product is different in the way it’s used. You drill holes in the stump and then apply the chemical to the holes. Wait until the wood begins to decay.
Create a level playing field–literally–using one of these simple methods.
Most Frequently Asked Questions
Is it necessary to remove a stump from a tree?
There are many disadvantages to leaving stumps in their place. Tree stumps can be unsightly and attract pests. They can also encourage weed growth and damage other trees and plants in your yard. Tree stumps and roots can cause damage to your home’s structure or decrease your property’s value in extreme cases.
It’s tempting just to leave them alone, but the longer you wait the more you may regret it.
Can I rebuild a stump?
If the roots are dead, it is possible to rebuild the stump. The roots that are still living will grow and can cause damage to your new construction. Rotting stumps should be removed as they can attract pests and cause new structures to decay, especially if they are made of wood.
Is it possible to remove a tree without leaving a stump?
It is possible to remove a whole tree stump, but heavy machinery such as a crane is required. This is a time-consuming and expensive procedure. There are many other options that are more cost-effective and less costly.
Talking to a professional at Better Tree Service and Consultants is your best option if you want to ensure that the tree and stump are removed efficiently. They will be able to guide you through the whole process.
Contact Better Tree Service And Consultants
Better Tree Service and Consultants are family owned and have been in the Tampa bay tree service industry since 2004. They have over 15 years of recorded excellence and a first-rate service and it’s something we are proud of. Better Tree Service and Consultants’s arborists have been certified by the ISA (International Society of Arboriculture). They are not only exceptional in hard work and dedication, but also that they have the knowledge and experience to ensure that you get the best customer service possible. Check out our gallery here to see some of our work.
- Palm Tree Trimming
- Crane Service
- Stump Grinding
- Tree Removal
- Tree Trimming
- Landscape Design and Installation
- Paver Installation
- Emergency Services and Storm Cleanup