When you notice an unruly, sick, or dead tree on your property, your first instinct might be to remove it yourself. After all, what's difficult about sawing down a trunk and cutting off branches?
Unfortunately, it may all sound straightforward in theory, but the project is far more technical, complicated, and dangerous in practice. Below are the top four dangers of DIY tree removal.
If you're removing a large tree, there is the risk of miscalculating where the tree or its branches will fall. You might think the tree is leaning towards one way, only to realize you're wrong when it's too late. Once the tree starts falling, there is no way to stop it. And, since the fall happens in seconds, you may not even have the time to influence its direction using ropes.
Removing a tree that is near a power line or your home is even more dangerous. If the tree falls on the power line, you could get electrocuted or even cause a blackout across your estate. And, if the tree falls on your home, it could cause costly damage or even injure people inside the house.
Tree removal entails the use of dangerous tools such as wood chippers and chainsaws. If you don't know how to use these tools properly, the risk of injuring yourself is high. For example, chainsaws tend to suddenly recoil upon hitting a hard object like a tree. Under inexperienced hands, the kickback could lead to severe cuts or injuries.
It's also important to note that proper utilization of these tools only comes through experience. While DIY videos will teach you how to use a chainsaw, they cannot dictate how you'll react if it recoils. In short, let these dangerous tools be handled by experts.
If you're cutting down a large tree, chances are you'll need a ladder for the job. Ladders can be unstable, and you may not balance yourself well while also holding a wood chipper. This exposes you to the risk of a fall.
Also, there is the risk of setting your ladder on a weakened limb or branch. This is highly possible, especially if you're removing a diseased or dead tree. Tree removal experts know when it's unsafe to use a ladder and can use other alternative means, like cranes.
It's difficult to know when a tree is decaying internally. Most DIYers attempt to remove a tree only to find the middle is decayed. This is extremely dangerous, as the tree could collapse anytime without warning.
Removing a decayed tree requires adequate knowledge of tree biology and physics. Unless you're a certified arborist, it's advisable that you seek professional tree removal services.