Tag Archives: Winter

NO WINTER VACATIONS!!

Pacocha - Weather Forecast UncertaintyWe just had quite the winter weather experience here in the Chicago area.  Weather forecasters were predicting anywhere from 5-10 inches of snow for our area.  Over the past 3 or 4 days, all we heard from the major news networks was to prepare for a major winter storm that was heading our way (high winds, heavy snow, etc.).  Ok, fine by us.  We are ready, let’s do it!!  We’ll, fast forward 12 hours and we had basically no accumulated snow on paved surfaces (barely a trace in a few areas), temperatures remained slightly above freezing and the forecasters proved to be entirely wrong yet again.  Of course, no big deal either way.  However, a day in the life of a snow management professional is one that has no guarantee.

Our customers rely on us to make trusted service related decisions while “babysitting” winter weather from November thru early April.  Our clients expect prompt service all winter long and whenever the need arises.

Snow Management Professionals take NO WINTER VACATIONS!  

Pacocha - Snow Melting on Contact - Above FreezingWhether we experience a fast moving ice storm overnight or a multi-day blizzard, we are expected to be properly equipped, ready and able to act in a very timely manner.

On behalf of our team at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc., we would like to thank our valued clients for yet another wonderful winter season and we look forward to earning your business well into the future!

Thank you for visiting and have a great day!

 

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Excellent Winter Weather and Snow Accumulation Forecasting Websites

Here are a few fantastic websites that provide very detailed winter weather forecast information so you can prepare well in advance for winter’s worst.

1). Weather Underground 

2). National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) 

3). AccuWeather

4). The Weather Channel

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any snow or ice removal service request you may have for your greater Chicagoland property.

Thank you for visiting!

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How much does 1 cubic yard of deicing salt weigh anyway?

Here is a little experiment our team at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. did to quickly verify how much rock salt (by weight) would fit into a 1 yard loader bucket.

Pacocha - Bagged Salt to Equal 1 Ton - 40 Bags of 50 pound salt bags Empty 1 Yard BucketWe started by filling the 1 yard bucket with 50lb. bags of rock salt (our known weight constant).

Pacocha - Filling Bagged Salt in Bucket to Equal 1 Ton - 40 Bags of 50 pound salt bags

Bulk deicing salt generally weighs about 80 lbs. per cubic foot (1 cubic yard = 27 cubic feet) which equals 2,160 lbs. per cubic yard or just over 1 ton.

Pacocha - Almost Filled Bucket with Bagged Salt to Equal 1 Ton - 40 Bags of 50 pound salt bags

The moisture content of salt will also play a part in it’s overall weight at any given time.

Pacocha - Filled Bucket with Bagged Salt to Equal 1 Ton - 40 Bags of 50 pound salt bags

We filled the 1 yard material bucket with 40 bags (50 lbs. each) of deicing rock salt.  Since of course 2,000 lbs. equals 1 ton, we can quickly rationalize (without the use of a scale) that generally speaking, 1 ton of deicing salt can easily translate into 1 yard of material by volume.

Pacocha - Bagged Salt to Equal 1 Ton - 40 Bags of 50 pound salt bags Full

40 – 50lb. bags of Diamond Crystal Winter Melt (Rock Salt – Halite) placed in a 1 yard material bucket pictured.

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. for more information on our extremely reliable Chicago area snow and ice management services.

 

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Trust, but verify! Snow, sleet and ice accumulation reporting by a third party certified meteorologist.

A very important part of our customer service approach at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. is the ability to keep very detailed records of any/all services performed at a client’s property (snow and ice management services in particular).  Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc.Whether it be an itemized invoice to indicate the exact services performed during each individual winter event, time related records to verify when services were performed or even quantifying the amount and/or type of ice melt material used, we insist on providing our valued clients this information so they can continually determine the value of any/all services rendered.  Pacocha - VBox Salt SpreaderIn addition to all of the winter service related operational detail our company stores and maintains, we also employ the services of Murray and Trettel, Inc. (Weather Command staff of professional certified meteorologists).  The team over at Murray and Trettel, Inc. provides our company with a snowfall accumulation report by event to verify any/all snow or ice accumulation that occurs on any given date.  Pacocha - Snow Accumulation ReportThe detailed snow and ice reports indicate the average amount of snow that has accumulated on a per city basis, start and stop times of each snow event and even a seasonal snow accumulation total by city.  Please be sure to contact our team at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. to assist with any commercial, industrial or residential snow and ice management need you may have.  Thank you for reading about our company and have a great day!

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On-site ice melt material storage for maximum application efficiency!

Pacocha - Bulk Treated Salt Being Dumped at a PropertyEvery winter, property owners, managers and of course contractors rely heavily on the ability to melt troublesome snow and ice from our paved roads, parking lots, driveways and sidewalks.  A common snow and ice melting practice includes the application of specific granular and/or liquid ice melt materials (sodium chloride, calcium chloride, potassium chloride, etc.) directly to paved surfaces either before, during and/or after a winter precipitation event.  Ice free pavement can be readily achieved with the right ice melt material, calibrated application equipment and proper timing.  A great way to ensure the best application timing and to reduce the cost of ice melt materials applied is by maintaining adequate seasonal ice melt supply directly at the property being serviced.

Pacocha - Loader at entry of steel salt storage containerHere are a few proven ways to store granular ice melt materials (bulk or bagged) at your commercial or industrial property.

1). Temporary steel storage container (also known as a shipping container or conex box). Sizes vary from 10′ to 53′ in length, 8′-10′ in width and up to 9.5′ tall.  Containers can be rented or purchased.

2). Unused garages or sheds.

3). Temporary bulk material bin made from Pacocha - Stacked concrete block salt bindry stacked precast concrete blocks.  Blocks normally come in sizes from 3′ to 6′ long and are 2′ wide and 2′ tall.

Please be sure to contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any winter service related questions you may have.  Thank you for reading our blog and have a great day!

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Having just the right cutting edge on your snow plow can make all the difference!

As a Chicago area snow and ice management contractor for nearly 20 years, we have grown quite accustomed to the effectiveness of steel edged snow plows, shovels, blowers, etc.  Steel is the most common and in many cases lowest cost material to use at the bottom of a snow clearing piece of equipment.  Pacocha - Steel Shoe and Wing Reinforcement on Sectional Snow PusherThe reason steel is the go-to trusted material for scraping, plowing and even lifting snow is it’s great durability, performance and availability.  Another great aspect of steel is that it can be repaired fairly easily by welding two broken pieces together, straightened when bent by applying intense heat and if needed quickly replaced.  Even though steel edged snow removal tools have earned their place in the snow fighters “tool box” over the years, you should be aware of other great materials that can provide excellent snow and ice clearing, but also provide very minimal wear or scratching of the surface being cleaned.  The other materials that make for great snow removal cutting/wear edges are solid rubber and polyurethane.  Rubber blades offer great abrasion resistance.  As you know rubber blades are more flexible and elastic than metal blades,Pacocha - Rubber Snow Plow Edge therefore absorb impact, shock, and conform easily to the pavement surface.  Rubber will reduce damage to the surface being cleared, making it the ideal choice for use on parking garages, brick pavers, cobblestone, or any other sensitive uneven surface.  Rubber (in my opinion) is the fastest wearing material when used commercially on a vehicle operated snow plow.  The other material is polyurethane.  Polyurethane provides improved abrasion characteristics over rubber and most metals.  Even though polyurethane is very Pacocha - Polyurethane Edge on Pull Snow Plowexpensive, it is also very resilient, and therefore absorbs impacts and conforms to the surface being plowed quite nicely.  Polyurethane cutting edges reduce equipment wear by minimizing blade and equipment vibration.  Polyurethane cutting edges are very quiet in operation, making them ideal for use in residential areas and hospitals.  Even though rubber and polyurethane cutting edges certainly have earned their place for clearing snow across the greater Chicago and northwest surrounding suburban area, my favorite material remainsPacocha - Steel Cutting Edge on ATV Snow Plow to be steel for the excellent proven results it produces year after year.  Please contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any questions or snow and ice management service requests you may have.  Thank you for taking the time to read my blog!

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On-Site Storage of Snow Fighting Equipment and Ice Melt Materials = Ultra Reliable and Cost Effective Chicago Area Snow Plowing and Deicing Services

If you demand nothing less than prompt, efficient and cost effective snow and ice management services at your larger Chicago area commercial, industrial or multi-family residential property then plan on providing ample on-site unobstructed short term winter storage space for your contractor’s dedicated snow clearing equipment, vital hand tools and needed ice melt materials  If the scope of work at a particular property is large enough to benefit from on-site equipment or ice melt material storage then it is very likely that a team of dedicated snow and ice fighting professionals will be exclusively assigned to your property for the entire winter season as well.  The winning combination of on-site dedicated/staged snow fighting equipment, adequate supply of ice melting materials on hand and a team of dedicated snow fighters equal the very best in prompt and cost effective service.  In most cases only a few unused parking spaces will be needed to stage a dedicated plow vehicle or other needed piece of snow fighting equipment.  However, it can be very cost effective for the client (if space allows) for a steel storage container to be placed on-site so the contractor can store it’s critical snow fighting equipment, supplies and ice melt materials securely and out of the weather.  It is very common for contractors to store various sized skid-steer loaders (Bobcat’s), snow plows, snow blowers, ice melt materials (bulk or bagged), ATV’s and spreaders in these steel constructed on-site secure weather protected storage containers.  Steel storage (overseas or conex) containers come in many sizes.  It is very common for a container to be 8’ wide, but can be specially constructed up to 10’ wide. Containers can be up to 9.5’ tall and range in length from 8’ all the way to 53’ long.  Many containers have two full width opening doors at one end (only) but can be leased or purchased with double doors at both ends of the container.  The mobile shipping containers are normally delivered to a property via flatbed roll back truck or trailer where they are placed in the exact location of choice.  When ready to remove, the containers need to be emptied of their contents and are easily lifted by a truck or trailer mounted steel winch, pulled atop a flatbed, secured and trucked away.  There are many companies that specialize in the rental and/or sales of steel storage containers.  The best container companies will have good inventory, offer fast delivery/pick up and will readily customize a container to best suit your needs.  Before hiring your next snow and ice management contractor be sure to discuss the possibility of on-site equipment or material storage at your property.  On-site storage is a great way to add value to most seasonal snow and ice management agreements. Please contact Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. with any snow and ice management need, question or concern you may have.  Thank you for your time and we look forward to being of service to you!

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Take your pick……… Choosing the best snow plowing and ice control contract for a Chicago winter!

The winter’s in Chicago and it’s surrounding suburbs have become very unpredictable to say the least.  Even though meteorologists do their best to provide “forecasts” of anticipated winter weather, we just never know for sure.  As property owners we must prepare well in advance for winters worst to ensure our residential, commercial or industrial properties are kept clear of snow and ice.  Even though every property is different and service expectations vary, here are several common ways to purchase snow and ice management services .

  • Unlimited Seasonal Contract: Any/all snow plowing, shoveling, ice melt applications, etc. will be performed for a fixed non-fluctuating seasonal fee.  Normally invoiced in full at beginning of season or monthly (November – March).
  • Limited Seasonal Contract: Limited number of snow plowing, shoveling and/or ice melt applications will be performed before incurring an additional predetermined fee (per service, per accumulated inch, per hour, etc.).  Normally if service exceeds specified limited contract quantities (number of service visits, applications, snow accumulation, etc.), client will be invoiced for additional predetermined fees at the end of a calendar month, season, etc..
  • Per Inch: Snow plowing and/or shoveling services are performed and depending on actual snow accumulation at time of service (determined on-site or by third party meteorologist), client is invoiced for each individual snow clearing visit at the predetermined contracted rate (i.e. 1″-3.9″ = $10.00, 4.0-7.9″ = $15.00, 8.0-11.9″= $25.00, etc.)
  • Per Application: Ice melt applications are made before/during/after winter precipitation has occurred.  Client is invoiced for each individual ice melt application property visit made.  Depending on site conditions, budget, temperatures, etc. multiple ice melt materials are commonly used (sodium chloride, calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, etc.)
  • Per Event: Any/all snow plowing, shoveling, ice melt applications, etc. are performed and invoiced at the end of a snow event.  Usually each “event” is defined as continuous snow fall beyond 2″ and within a 24 hour period)
  • Time & Materials: Any/all snow plowing, shoveling, ice melt applications, etc. are performed and invoiced according to predetermined hourly and/or material rates.
  • As Needed Only: Any/all snow plowing, shoveling, ice melt applications, etc. are requested by the client normally after winter precipitation has occurred.  Pricing for needed services are normally provided just before work begins on-site.  In my opinion, this is the most unpredictable and most expensive way to purchase snow and ice management services.
  • Any combination of the above
As always, our team at Pacocha Landscaping Services, Inc. remains at your complete disposal 24/7/365.  Be sure to let us know if we can provide winter related service information for your residential, commercial or industrial property.  

 

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