7 Tips for DIY Safe Tree Trimming

When you look around your property, do you notice any trees that look like they might need some pruning? Whether you use them as privacy barriers or to provide shade in the summer, trees add beauty and value to your home. So it’s important to make sure they are healthy and thriving. If you aren’t sure how to trim trees safely and effectively, follow these tips on tree trimming!


Always use proper safety gear

When working with power tools and equipment, it’s important to wear appropriate safety gear. Whether you’re trimming trees or laying new electrical wiring, you should always wear protective glasses and a hard hat, at a minimum. Any time you’re using a chainsaw or other cutting implement, it’s crucial to wear thick protective clothing so your skin isn’t exposed to jagged tree limbs or flying bits of metal from nails that have been stripped out. Additionally, wearing long sleeves will help protect your arms from scratches when branches are being trimmed. At all times when operating power tools, be sure to keep pets and children away; proper preparation can prevent accidents before they occur.


Always have back up plans

Tree trimming can be dangerous. So it’s always a good idea to have backup plans in place. Is there another person or company you can call if you don’t feel safe? How will you decide when it’s time to stop working and when it’s time to call an ambulance? For most tree companies, safety is one of their main concerns—but not every job site is safe, so it helps to know what questions to ask your employer and how far you should push yourself. If your boss tells you that he’ll do everything he can to keep his workers safe but doesn’t seem confident about his ability, don’t push yourself beyond reasonable limits. There’s a difference between pushing yourself and taking unnecessary risks.


Know what type of tree you are working with

Before you begin tree trimming, take a moment to identify what type of tree you’re working with. It’s especially important to know whether it’s an evergreen or deciduous tree that may still have leaves during certain times of the year. You should also understand if your tree is in full leaf or if it has been pruned previously so you can work accordingly. It might sound obvious, but knowing what type of tree you are working with will help you better plan how to trim it. When in doubt, check local sources like plant nurseries and arborists who may be able to help identify the specific trees near your home that need maintenance and support.


You can’t control the wind

You’re going to get hit by gusts when you’re out on a limb. Wind can cause serious damage to your tree or shake it loose from its roots, leading to heavy branches hitting power lines. To help prevent damage, make sure you know where your tree’s root systems are before you start trimming so that you don’t cut too deep and end up doing more harm than good. And be careful about which direction wind is blowing from. You may need to trim a branch from a different angle in order to avoid breaking your equipment or putting yourself at risk of falling.


Lightning can strike at any time

Lightning-strike fatalities in trees are rare, but they do happen. In fact, lightning is responsible for hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries each year. Because trees are made up mostly of water when lightning strikes a tree there’s a good chance that it will travel to other parts of your property through various power lines and/or phone lines. It’s not unheard of for fire crews to have to battle fires caused by lightning fires on properties where no fire has occurred. When you hire a tree service provider to trim your trees, make sure they can help you minimize your risk exposure. Including testing lines before trimming any branches that might come into contact with them.


Pay attention to your surroundings

Before you start trimming your tree, it’s important to take a walk around and get an idea of what you’re dealing with. Not only will this let you see if there are any safety hazards near your house or surrounding trees that could affect you. But it will also give you a better idea of how to trim your tree. If it’s an evergreen, for example, chances are good that some branches grow straight up. If it’s a deciduous tree that drops its leaves in winter and is bare during spring and summer like many fruit trees. Then branches might be long and tend to bend towards the ground before curving back up.


Don’t forget to clean up!

When working around trees, it’s critical to have a plan in place to clean up all of your equipment and debris before you leave. Whether or not your municipality has specific rules about tree trimming debris, it’s still a good idea to be considerate of your neighbors. A few minutes with a shovel can spare them from having to deal with any cleanup at all. Keep in mind that many jurisdictions do have regulations about how much time you have to clean up before fines kick in; make sure you check with your local government to know what their requirements are!

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