Can You Safely Remove a Tree Yourself?

Learn why it's best to leave tree removal to professionals and what regulations you need to consider before removing trees from your private property.

Can You Safely Remove a Tree Yourself?

While there are many landscaping projects you can do safely and easily yourself, tree removal isn't one of them. It's a labor-intensive and dangerous job that can result in costly medical bills and repairs if you hurt yourself or damage your home. Davey's arborists offer free estimates for tree removal, so it's best to leave it to the professionals. Do-it-yourselfers often underestimate the size and weight of large branches and trunk sections, as well as the likelihood of damage or accidents when trying to remove the cut sections.

In tight situations, a crane may be the only way to safely remove branches and tree trunks. Most of the time (99% of the time) it's not recommended to remove a dead tree yourself, especially if it has been dead for a long period of time. You won't need a permit to remove a dead tree in most cases, but forestry may refuse permission if it is in the best interest of the public. Some cities, such as El Paso, Cleveland, Oakland, and Atlanta have provisions in their municipal codes regarding the removal of trees on private property.

In some cases, certain types of trees are “protected” and require special permits for removal. If you live in an area affected by the Asian longhorned beetle, you may need additional work to remove a tree from a quarantine zone. Community developments in New York may also have tree ordinances depending on the location of the tree and who planted it.Whether you need to remove a dying tree or want to replant a tree somewhere else, it's important that you remove it carefully. If you wait for a tree trunk to decompose naturally, it will take years, attract fungi, termites and ants, and then you will have to dig up and remove the remaining material.

It will also depend on the tree species and whether that particular tree species is protected or considered a nuisance. Owners of private property also have the right to request public removal of trees in Boston through tree hearings.Chicago residents cannot remove trees from their private property without first obtaining a tree work permit from the Office of Forestry. The same is true in Birmingham, where there are no rules associated with the removal of trees on private property. Before cutting down any trees, make sure you have all the necessary safety equipment including a helmet, hearing protection and eye protection, as well as equipment needed to tie it to the tree and prevent it from falling.

You'll also need to clear the area of people, pets, and anything else the tree might fall on.In Carson City, there are no special regulations that allow city officials to enter and remove trees from private property for any reason.

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