Tree stumps can be rather unsightly. They’re either taking up room on your beautifully landscaped lawn, or they serve as a reminder of the majestic tree that once stood. Either way, most people want the stump out of their yard and in the wood chipper ASAP.
There’s a temptation to do it oneself, with a group of guys with large trucks and heavy-duty chains on a nice Saturday afternoon. While this little get-together sounds fun, it’s really important to do stump removal properly and safely. Here are some of our tips if you truly want to remove that tree stump yourself!
1. Don’t hook it up to your truck!
For the love of God and shiny chrome bumpers, don’t wrap a chain around the stump and attempt to yank it out. You’ll probably end up with some damage to your truck, because surprise, surprise, trucks are meant to pull moving objects, not stationary ones. To do it safely, you’ve got to dig most of the stump out anyway. We don’t advise it, of course; try one of the other ways.
2. Get some stump remover
Chemical stump removers and root killers can take a while to work – around four to six weeks – but it’s a hands-off approach that doesn’t come with a lot of expense. These products use potassium nitrate to speed up the rotting process, and really only work for older stumps.
To use, drill a series of holes with a spade bit + extension into the stump – on top, on the sides, and any intersecting angles. Connecting the holes makes the rotting process more effective. Pour the stump remover into the holes, cover it with plastic to prevent rain from washing it out, and let it sit.
You can speed up the process by grinding away the dead wood and re-apply the chemicals every so often. It’s a very cost-effective way of removing stumps, but like we said, it takes a lot longer than simply pulling it up.
3. It’s not a good idea to burn it
You can burn what remains of this rotten stump by soaking the remaining wood in kerosene (not gas – never gas!) and dropping a lit match, but word of caution: it smolders for a while. If you choose this method, remove all debris surrounding it and wrap in a protective wiring like chicken wire to prevent any leaves from blowing in. Don’t do this during a dry summer or fire ban, and keep an eye on it at all times. It’s probably a better idea to take an axe or grinder to it instead.
If you need the stump removed post-haste, give us a call! We don’t like to brag, but we’re pretty good at all kinds of tree removal, including stumps! We’ll do it quickly and painlessly, so instead of standing around the stump with your friends while someone tries to yank it out with their Chevy, go play a round of golf or enjoy the ballgame. Let us worry about it!