Chipper hourly rate in Canada?

pacifichedge

New Member
I have been in business for over 10 years mostly working as a contract climber but now I have bought a bandit chipper and chip truck im excited but the only thing im still wondering about is what I charge per hour for chipping debris? but it has to be in cdn dollars as I know the industry costs are different in north American.
 

Reach

Well-Known Member
Its very difficult to give a number like that, as everyone has different expenses. My recommendation is to calculate your operating expenses, fixed and variable, and see what it actually costs you to run your truck and chipper. Add in the profit you want to make, and turn that into an hourly or daily rate. If you’re not sure how to do those calculations, you can find help via a google search, or ask your accountant for help.
 
Serf Life is correct. Cleaning up someone elses mess is the pits. especially old messes.

As far as charging out, at first i went with a similar price to the rental shop. Having rented from Nor-Val before I got my chipper, I know that after fueling up, it cost me $400/day.
So at first I was adding $50/hour.
Last year with the dump truck, I charged $65. So that 520/day for full day jobs.
I'm reconsidering that rate this year, I'd like to charge 75 for the chipper and the dump truck.
I got my chipper for pretty cheap. It's a 2002 vermeer bc14000. its not pretty , and they're lots of maintenance. not to mention fuel.

I'm in interior rural BC. so there's a lot of homeowner DIYers, half price Harry's, as well as legit competitors. Also, if the price is too high, then they won't hire the chipper, just opt for the takedown, and burn the brush.
If you're a down town tree service, people might not be so savy with a saw, and won't be able to burn in town, so maybe you can charge more.
 

RyTheTreeGuy

Well-Known Member
I have been on the giving end as well as the recieving end of this. Prior to purchasing our own chipper we would have to contract out the chipping. Keep in mind we knew how to pile brush and it would always be by the curb or close to where the chipper would be located. The most we ever had to pay was $600...the least was $300. It was a necessary evil and if the client chose the removal of all brush and wood we would add $500 to the estimate to cover our costs. We will now not take the chipper out for anything less then $300. 15 mins or 50 mins the price stays the same. I would say the average for chipping for us is $500
 
I have been on the giving end as well as the recieving end of this. Prior to purchasing our own chipper we would have to contract out the chipping. Keep in mind we knew how to pile brush and it would always be by the curb or close to where the chipper would be located. The most we ever had to pay was $600...the least was $300. It was a necessary evil and if the client chose the removal of all brush and wood we would add $500 to the estimate to cover our costs. We will now not take the chipper out for anything less then $300. 15 mins or 50 mins the price stays the same. I would say the average for chipping for us is $500
Is your 300 minimum for just the chipper? You have a per man charge on top of that?
I usually have a 2hr minimum charge, and I charge to have the chipper onsite, even if it only does 15 min of work. Which 15min chipping : 1hr 45min cutting is about the ratio.
 

RyTheTreeGuy

Well-Known Member
Is your 300 minimum for just the chipper? You have a per man charge on top of that?
I usually have a 2hr minimum charge, and I charge to have the chipper onsite, even if it only does 15 min of work. Which 15min chipping : 1hr 45min cutting is about the ratio.
Our 300 Minimum would be if the pile was curbside and ready to be thrown in the chipper. It would have to be very close to our location and most likely only 30 mins or less of work. So a small pile of brush and haul away...basically $300 just to show up. Any extra work is added to that. If we have to drag and cut the man hours will be added as well as fuel, maintenance, etc.
 

Merle Nelson

Well-Known Member
I try not to chip piles homeowners make. If I do agree to it I try to hold myself to small armfuls and splaying that out on the feed table to inspect for debris. Recently a homeowner decided to help me out by trimming bushes ahead of me getting to his job. I didn't inspect the piles closely enough and somehow a 3/16ths inch dia rod in a 10 inch circle that looked like it had come from a tomato stand ended up going through the chipper. Fortunately it fell out the Bandit "rock trap" and only had feed wheel marks on it.

How much would I charge to come to a persons place and chip piles? Never enough.
 

pacifichedge

New Member
I have been on the giving end as well as the recieving end of this. Prior to purchasing our own chipper we would have to contract out the chipping. Keep in mind we knew how to pile brush and it would always be by the curb or close to where the chipper would be located. The most we ever had to pay was $600...the least was $300. It was a necessary evil and if the client chose the removal of all brush and wood we would add $500 to the estimate to cover our costs. We will now not take the chipper out for anything less then $300. 15 mins or 50 mins the price stays the same. I would say the average for chipping for us is $500
I like your idea of charging 150 an hour with a 2 hr min making it $300 that's whats I was going to charge. and I thought $200-250 on emergency calls.
 

Serf Life

Well-Known Member
I'm in interior rural BC. so there's a lot of homeowner DIYers, half price Harry's, as well as legit competitors. Also, if the price is too high, then they won't hire the chipper, just opt for the takedown, and burn the brush.
Tough consideration if getting started and needing to pull in most of the quotes. So many cheap clients where a $50 difference will get the job or lose it to lower quality competitors. Gotta pay for the new chipper, but getting known for low prices and having return customers expecting a similar cost later... Personally prefer working rural properties, but get easier work intown and better exposure for new clients. Pricing is so location dependent!
 

southsoundtree

Well-Known Member
How much will you spend to bring in $300 Gross?



What would you do with that time otherwise?

Will you be able to drop by and chip when you want, or are you having to block time out of your schedule?


You're in the technical tree work biz, not the chipping biz.


How is chipping an 'emergency'? Why would this cost you less than a 'non-emergency'?
 
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pacifichedge

New Member
when it comes to pricing trees and clean up im okay with that. I know the set prices. but it seems good to know what others are asking if it's only for chipping? times and cost has changed when I last chipped something in a big company over 12 years ago. the stupid thing is I try to ask other companies no one wants to tell you and by asking on here seems no one want to tell you either. if you think I should charge more then let me know what you charge. or im going to try a trail and error and i'll find out what others are charging.
 

southsoundtree

Well-Known Member
I don't want to leave the house for less than $300-400, without a chip truck.


Last homeowner piles I chipped were 4 hour for $600+ tax with 2 employees for a good, established (13 years) customer, onto the ground. Every year or two I work for him.


At the same time, I got paid separately for felling dead trees, then forwarding more material for a grapple truck pick up.
$1500 or so, for the job. Several years ago.

Non-stop chipping sucks. 15-20' drag.
One guy ended up with a sore, overworked shoulder.


He's a responsible engineer who cleared out the back woods himself, so I had a lot more faith that there would be no metal.
 

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