Tag Archives: Snow and Ice Management

On-Demand Snow Plowing vs Contracted Seasonal Snow Management Services

The goal of any snow removal service arrangement is to have snow-free pavement at your property whenever the need arises.  Ideally, snow removal should be accomplished via an on-going approach, as snow accumulates, working with the storm until finished.  In our local Chicagoland area, snow removal services can either be purchased individually (on-demand) or more commonly, by the season (contract agreement).

On-Demand Snow Plowing = A snow removal service in which no long-term agreement is necessary.  Service is performed on very short notice and upon client request (only).  Substantial time commitment is required by client to continue/manage such a service and results can be sporadic at best.  Service pricing fluctuates (usually accumulation and/or resource availability dependent) and accidental property damage is likely due to less than desirable property awareness (ever changing/non-dedicated service providers, lack site specific snow removal/relocation knowledge, ignorant of past client special requests, unaware of snow covered obstacles, etc).

Contracted Seasonal Snow Management Service = A snow removal service that revolves around a formal written seasonal service agreement.  A long term detailed arrangement that normally includes any/all services needed, all winter long and for a flat price (unless specified otherwise).  Minimal client involvement is required after service begins.  On-going performance continually improves based on site familiarity, use of specialized equipment and dedicated man-power assigned to the site.

Here are a few leading questions that may help you determine which snow removal service (on-demand or seasonal) is best for you?

1). Do you wish to personally manage any/all snow removal services performed at your property?  ………. if yes, an On-Demand service may be perfect for you!

2). Do you wish to self-perform a portion of the needed snow removal services at your property?  As an example, you would like to personally handle any/all snow removal services needed at your property that are less than 6″ of total accumulation.  …….. if this limited service approach describes your situation well, an On-Demand service would best suit your needs.

3). Do you wish you lived in Florida and did not have to deal with snow?  A Seasonal Snow Management Service is perfect for you!

4). Do you lead a busy life and snow removal is the last thing you want to think about?  Find a reliable and positive snow removal company and never worry about snow removal again.  A seasonal snow management arrangement was made for you!

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any seasonal snow removal request you may have.  We greatly appreciate the opportunity and thank you for visiting our site.  Have a great day!

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Bagged or Bulk Salt?

Whenever our company considers servicing a new property for snow and ice management, we first determine what type of ice melt material will be required to properly service the site.  To be more precise, will the ice melt material needed be packaged in 50 pound bags or will it be in bulk form.

Generally speaking, larger paved parking lot areas will be serviced using bulk material whenever possible.  Bulk ice melt material requires suitable dry storage (short/long term, on/off-site, etc.),  dedicated wheeled bucket loader and specialized truck mounted bulk material spreader powered by either hydraulic pump, gas engine or electric motor.  There is no doubt that bulk salt requires a large investment in material handling equipment and proper storage, but once setup, bulk salt can be efficiently spread over large areas to quickly achieve the final outcome desired.

Sidewalks, driveways, small parking areas, etc. are generally serviced by spreading a suitable non-clumping bagged ice melt material using small pickup truck mounted tailgate spreaders,  walk behind rotary or drop spreaders (manually pushed or propelled by gas engine power) or even spread by hand in glove, pulled directly out of a 5 gallon bucket, to complete the targeted application required.

BULK ICE MELT MATERIAL

Pros

Pros
  • Pound-for-pound, the price of delivered bulk material is less expensive than it’s bagged material equivalent.
  • Available in large semi-truck quantities (20-22 tons per delivered load).
  • Can apply over large open areas quickly and efficiently.

Cons

Cons
  • Requires expensive equipment to move and load material.
  • Requires storage in a large dry dedicated bin or steel container to prevent material loss/run-off.
  • Prone to bulk salt material shortages (limited or non-existent local area supply) during on-going heavy winter weather seasons.
  • Price-per-ton of bulk salt increases rapidly (25% > 75%+/-) when material shortages are anticipated or finally realized.

BAGGED ICE MELT MATERIAL

Pros

Pros
  • Available to purchase in very small quantities (50 pound bag).
  • Plastic bag packaging keeps material dry and clump-free.
  • Bags delivered neatly stacked on a wood pallet (49-55 bags per pallet) and wrapped in plastic.
  • Less prone to material clumping or hardening if plastic bag packaging remains sealed.
  • Even during times of bulk salt shortages, bagged ice melt material generally remains available for purchase albeit at a higher price.
  • Amount of ice melt material used can be accurately quantified on a job-by-job basis.
  • Material remains dry until bags are opened to fill spreader at time of application.
  • Can stack and store pallets of bagged material indefinitely and without loss as long as material remains dry.

Cons

Cons
  • More expensive than bulk material equivalent.
  • Additional labor required to repeatedly lift, open and pour sealed bags into spreading equipment.
  • Need to dispose of discarded plastic bag packaging and wood shipping pallets.

Please contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. to discuss snow and ice management services needed at your local Chicagoland area property.  Thank you for visiting our site and have a great day!

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Ready for Accumulating Snow on November 1st!

It seems that accumulating snow is happening earlier and earlier in the fall season here in the northern Illinois Chicago area.  Over the last 20 years, we were considered “lucky” (from a plow contractor’s perspective 🙂 ) to get accumulating snow as early as mid-to-late December, but the last few winters have proven otherwise.

From our company’s point of view, accumulating snow in November is now to be expected.  Even though snow and ice service planning, operational improvement and efficient route creation never stops and truly happens year round, being fully operational and ready to successfully service our clients properties on November 1st.  is now the rule, not the exception.

Please contact our company, Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc., for more information on our snow and ice management service offering and to receive a professional and fully detailed seasonal winter service agreement custom created specifically for your property.

Thank you for visiting our site and have a great winter season!

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3 Proven Ways to Increase Commercial Snow Removal Quality and Reliability!

After spending the last 25 years in the business of commercial snow removal, even to this day, we continue to learn and find new ways to tweak our operational techniques and further improve the level of service we provide for our clients.  Here are 3 readily available resources that if used, will help a snow removal contractor increase efficiency, improve quality and ideally, stay a few steps ahead of the storm.

1). Skid-Steer Loader: Very reliable, extra maneuverable and can clear a lot of snow in a hurry! Regardless of the brand of skid-steer  (Bobcat, Cat, New Holland, etc.), these machines run on either wheels or tracks and can quickly attach to just about any snow removal attachment ever created (universal attachment mounting plate used across all manufacturer’s machines).  Couple a sectional containment plow/snow pusher (8′ to 12′ wide) to a highly maneuverable piece of equipment like a skid-steer loader and you have a winning combination for just about any snow clearing operation!

 

2). Industrial Snow Pusher Shovel:  Simple, durable and excellent scraping ability.  These “Snow Plow/Snow Pusher” shovels are constructed almost entirely of polyethylene/fiberglass and perform flawlessly!  With only a minimal initial investment ($25-$80 each), these snow shovels come in a variety of sizes ranging from 12″ to 48″ wide and can be easily refurbished (if ever needed) with parts available direct from the manufacturer.  These shovels are especially great for clearing snow from somewhat delicate surfaces that are prone to scratching and damage from normal steel edged snow shovels (wood decks, brick pavement, stone, outdoor carpet, stamped concrete, etc.).

3). Mobile Storage Containers:  Large or small sizes readily available, own or rent, super secure and can be delivered just about anywhere.These strategically placed, on-site, all steel containers have truly revolutionized the way ice melt materials (bagged and bulk) and snow removal equipment can be stored, secured and maintained to achieve a constant state of readiness.

Please be sure to contact our team at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any snow and ice management service need you may have.  We remain ready and able to assist any way we can.  Thank you for visiting our site and have a great day!

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So what are you anyway ………….. a contractor or a mechanic?

My answer is BOTH!  Well, sort of anyway.

Being a contractor in the landscape and snow industry means you have the honor of working with fantastic people, spend your days in the great outdoors and are surrounded by, and rely heavily on equipment.  Whether complex vehicles or simple machines, the need for work producing equipment in the contracting industry is just about mandatory.

In my opinion, an aspiring contractor today must strive to continually learn (at the very least) the “inner-workings” of the various pieces of equipment used daily so that a reliable and cost-effective service can be consistently delivered to it’s customer.

If you happen to be interested in how plants grow and keeping machinery in great running condition, take a look at the landscape and snow management industry as a career.

You will never have a dull work day ever again!

Thank you for visiting our site and as always, please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. for all your lawn, landscape and snow management needs.  Have a great day!

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