One of the most requested tree services, tree trimming helps property owners keep their trees looking good. The tree maintenance procedure shapes the tree crown, ensures no dead or damaged branches are messing the tree’s appearance, and ensures the crown is healthy. In Tulsa, most property owners prefer to work with professional tree trimmers.
Professionals charge $80 for the smallest and non-risky trees, with the tree trimming cost increasing as the tree trimming procedure becomes more complicated, maxing out at around $1000. Property owners with average-sized trees spend $350 to about $500 on professional trimming.
A variety of factors affect the tree trimming cost. If you are planning a tree trimming project, a look at these factors will give you a better idea of the amount of money you need to set aside.
Factors Affecting the Tree Trimming Cost in Tulsa, OK
1. Tree Size
Two size factors affect the cost of trimming a tree – these are tree height and the size of the crown. Tall trees tend to attract the highest tree trimming cost and it is easy to see why.
As the height of a tree increases, trimming it becomes riskier. Also, almost every tall tree in Tulsa, Oklahoma has a huge crown that carries thick branches – this means that the tree trimmers need more time on large trees than small trees. More trimming time leads to a higher tree trimming cost.
Depending on the size of your tree, you should expect the tree trimming costs outlined below:
- Small trees – For a tree to be considered small, its height has to be below 30 feet. Carrying small crowns and requiring the lowest effort to trim, small trees have a low tree trimming cost, with professional tree trimmers charging $80 to $400.
- Medium trees – These trees grow to be 30 to 60 feet tall. For professionals to trim your medium-sized trees, they will charge you $150 to $875.
- Large trees – These trees have a height above 60 feet. Homeowners with large trees spend $200 to $1000 on tree trimming.
2. Accessibility to a Bucket Truck
Bucket trucks have made tree trimming extremely easy. Eliminating the need for manual climbing, bucket trucks improve safety and also reduce the time needed to trim a tree.
Unfortunately, bucket trucks are not always usable. While professionals can work with a bucket truck on the tree standing in front of your house, the bucket truck may not be usable on the trees in your backyard. A bucket truck needs enough parking space and a way to get close enough to the tree.
When a bucket truck is unusable, professionals have to climb up the tree manually. Being risky and taking more time, manual climbing increases the tree trimming cost by about 30% to 40%. If your 100-foot oak tree would cost $1000 to trim with a bucket truck, the inability to use the bucket truck can increase the tree trimming cost to between $1,300 and $1,400.
3. Proximity to Utilities
Trees standing away from utility lines, houses, and other important structures are extremely easy to trim. The professionals can cut the branches and allow them to fly off to the ground. This makes the trees more affordable to trim.
When trees are standing next to utilities, the branches cannot be allowed to fly off to the ground. Instead, the tree trimmers are forced to lower them down slowly. The process of tying the branches with ropes and then lowering them down slowly takes more time – this forces the tree trimmers to raise the tree trimming cost.
4. Tree Health
When pests and diseases attack a tree, one of their primary effects is weakening the tree’s wood structure. For this reason, professionals have to be extra careful when climbing a tree suffering from a health problem. Before stepping on a branch, they have to double-check it just to make sure it can support their weight.
Additional time is also needed to navigate the entire tree crown checking different branches and removing all the infected branches. This tends to increase the overall tree trimming cost.
Professional tree trimmers often prefer to work with a professional arborist when trimming diseased trees. This helps diagnose the tree and determine the best medications and/or pesticides that can be used to treat it. The cost of hiring an arborist and purchasing the treatment options needed by a tree increases the tree trimming cost by $50 to $500.
5. Tree Stability
Tree stability is one of the key components that tree service providers consider when trimming a tree. Working on unstable trees is very risky – this forces the tree trimmers to increase the tree trimming cost. Some of the conditions that affect tree stability include:
- Weather damage – High winds and storms are known to compromise tree stability.
- Cracks – Tree cracks are not very common – when they appear on a tree, they show that a tree is suffering from a major underlying condition. Unless the problem affecting the tree is identified and treatable, it may kill the tree.
- Fungi – Fungi consume tree nutrients – this weakens the tree’s wood structure with time. It is also worth noting that fungi are sometimes caused by the decaying wood structure.
Before trimming unstable trees, tree trimmers may need to spend some time stabilizing them. Stabilization mechanisms such as cabling do work for numerous stability issues. The stabilization procedures generally require more time and often push the tree trimming cost up.
6. Travel Fees
Tree trimmers charge a travel fee if they have to cover a significant distance to get to the worksite. When tree owners hire tree service providers close to their homes, they can avoid the travel fee.
In Tulsa, OK, tree trimmers charge a travel fee of $0.5 per mile. Some professionals prefer a fixed cost that ranges from $50 to $200 depending on the travel distance.
7. Number of Trees
One of the easiest ways to save money on tree trimming is to trim a group of trees together. When trimming one 30-foot tree, you may pay $200. The tree trimming cost for ten trees of the same size may add up to $1,500 – by trimming the ten trees together, you will spend $50 less on each tree.
Before trimming a tree, there are several costs that the tree trimmers have to take care of – these include permits, travel fuel, and licenses. These costs do not change when trimming multiple trees – the fact that the tree trimmers receive a higher compensation allows them to charge a lower tree trimming cost and still enjoy a good profit.
Hourly Tree Trimming Cost
The time needed to trim a tree is affected by numerous factors. For this reason, professionals prefer a fixed cost over an hourly cost. To show you why tree trimming companies prefer fixed costs, we will take a look at an example.
Company A, which has experienced tree trimmers and advanced tools, may spend 2 hours on a 100-foot oak tree. Company B, which has less experienced tree trimmers and old tools, may spend 6 hours on the same tree. If both companies charge $150 per hour, the first company will get paid $300 only for doing a great job faster while company B will receive $900 for doing the same job at a much slower rate – company A will operate at a loss while company B overcharges you.
Because of such scenarios, professionals prefer to charge a fixed cost that takes care of all the expenses, pays the workers, and leaves the company a good profit.
DIY or Hire Professionals
Before deciding to handle tree trimming alone, you will need to consider the risks and the costs surrounding this option:
DIY Tree Trimming Risks
Several risks surround DIY trimming, including:
- You may suffer injuries if you fall from the tree crown.
- The sharp tools you will be using can cut you.
- The possibility of property damage is high when trees are standing next to important utilities.
- If you do not have tree trimming experience, you may damage your trees irreparably – this may force you to spend more money on the tree’s removal and replacement.
DIY Tree Trimming Cost
Before trimming your trees, you will need to spend money on tree trimming tools:
- Heavy-duty gas trimmer: You will pay $50 to rent this for a day
- Gas pole pruner: $150 to $300
- Safety gear (safety goggles, helmet, safety harness, gloves, etc.): $50 to $200
- Ladder: $150 to $500
- Hand-held pruners: $50
- After trimming the trees, you will have to spend $25 to $150 on cleanup and dumping.
- If things go wrong and you suffer injuries or damage to your home, you may need to spend thousands of dollars on property repairs or treatment costs.
If your trees are non-risky and small, DIY tree trimming may be an ideal option. However, if your tree has a height above 60 feet and is standing next to important utilities, paying professionals may be a good idea. Keep in mind that poorly executed DIY tree trimming can be more expensive than professional tree trimming.