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charge per bag?

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by ACA L&L, Jan 6, 2007.

  1. ACA L&L

    ACA L&L Senior Member
    Messages: 362

    Hi all
    we have the plow pricing down(at least we would like to think that)
    we are going to purchase a tailgate spreader for salt/de icer
    were thinking around 600 # capacity.
    My question is how do u come up with an accurate way to charge for the deicer
    by the bag? since we have to load bags, by the area? by the lot?
    we are basically doing walkways at the malls and store fronts some drives commercial that donot get the sun.
    residential walkways.
    Thanks for any and all info
  2. ACA L&L

    ACA L&L Senior Member
    Messages: 362

  3. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    I don't do a ton of deicing but I do used bagged material and a tailgate spreader and I charge buy the bag. For me, it's the best method to keep track of the profit margin.
  4. IndySnowPlow

    IndySnowPlow Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 214

    Charge by the pound used / applied

    example: Your cost is .10cents per pound, then figure your "other" expenses to store, load, apply, labor etc and figure how much you have to mark "up" each pound you sell.
  5. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    We only use bag chemicals with tailgate spreaders about 50-70 tons on avg. We charge by the bag and application time. We store supply's at locations thru the route to resupply and have reserve stock plus the pickups are loaded with about 70 bags each. So we store chemicals for some time to be ready and this is a cost so that must be added into the price per bag.I don't know how much chemicals you are going to use but it goes fast remember its not the size of the spreader its the supply of chemicals you have on hand. You don't want to keep driving back and forth to resupply when you run out a truck can only carry so much.Some customers use chemicals other than salt we provide CaCl2 MgCl2 and NaCl so we have to be able to change on the fly. I cant give you prices for your area but rule of thumb is about 5 bucks markup on each bag of product. A tailgate will offload a bag in about 45-60 seconds max so 5 bucks a min is not bad.Conditions change all the time and amounts of applied chemicals change but another rule of thumb is 1 piece of #1 salt per square inch. ice would be more but ground temps and type of snow make a diff. Dry fluffy snow wont need as much as a heavy wet snow. Melting snow dilutes the chemicals so more needs to be applied less on dry snow because of the moisture content .Hope this helps...a pics of one of our storage lockers have 8 each hold about 3 tons....


    DAFFMOBILEWASH PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,581

    By the application

    Make thing easy on yourself. Charge the same basic rate for plowing as salting. Adjust pricing with:
    high traffic (foot)
    lots of sidewalks
    importance factor(high risk parking areas)

    hard to push lots
    zero tollerance for snow(you can make good $$$$)
    lots with percentile gravel
    long term clients(4 season)

    When you use bulk salt you cant precisely measure it, in time as you get bigger you will se the increases proffitablity of salting and go bulk. Saves time, you can put the same amout down at almost half the cost.

    Just my ideas

  7. ACA L&L

    ACA L&L Senior Member
    Messages: 362

    thanks guys for the feedback!
    This helps alot, fernaldude

  8. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,609

    I didn't know salt was that valuable there is that a gun?
  9. Lawn Care Plus

    Lawn Care Plus Senior Member
    Messages: 135

    OK, I'll bite.

    I just bought a usd SnowEx PivotPro 1075 for this season.

    Guys around here are charging by the hour and by the bag. They are charging like $20.00 per bag along with the per hour fee.

    Call me a low - baller, but I am charging per hour and $10.00 per bag. If I buy by the pallet, the bags cost me $2.29. So I will still make out just fine.

  10. DJ Contracting

    DJ Contracting PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,392

    I thought that too. I'll just plow and salt in my neck of the woods.
  11. ACA L&L

    ACA L&L Senior Member
    Messages: 362

    Sounds good. They are charging 12.43 for a 50 lb bag of snoway ice melt out here?????????????????????????? Works on walkways but cant seem to score something cheap for the drives/lots.................:redbounce
  12. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    We run snow 2 ex 575's and 2meyer old school big yellow box 3 buyers (large and small) a boss pro I like the snow-ex the best
  13. mmwb

    mmwb Senior Member
    from wyoming
    Messages: 114

    I'm charging .45 lb applied. My cost is .15 lb. I figure I need to charge the .30 to cover cost, depreciation of equipment, and my time. Pretty pricey, but I've only one lot at this time (the only one in town that gets deiced) and can't justify the set up for bulk.
  14. Superior L & L

    Superior L & L PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,035

    You ned to find a cheaper supplyer Ice devel at Lowes about $4.50 a bag, or Tiger Melt about $6.50 (pallet price). We charge in the 40-50 cent a pound range. Straight salt about $4 for 80#. Now I know Ice devil is probably not as good as sone product but its not straight salt and they all melt snow.
  15. Superior L & L

    Superior L & L PlowSite Veteran
    from MI
    Messages: 3,035

    Id need the gun to shoot myself in the head when i get the bill for that Peladow. That stuff is outrageous :gunsfiring: :gunsfiring:
  16. Grn Mtn

    Grn Mtn PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,644

    another method you could try is to charge for the visit + per bag of salt. Lets say your salting a one acre lot, you've just plowed it so all you need is a light amount, just enough to keep any icing from happening. Let say 12, 50lb bags of salt, (for this example) at a cost to you of $3.50 per. Time to salt the lot, arrive, load, salt, and hand toss one bag on the sidewalk entrance is 30 minutes. You know your cost of doing business to make a profit and cover expenses is (example only) $100 per hour. So you charge $50 service call + (I like to charge the customer what they could by the salt for at Home Depot + a little mark-up) $5.36 per bag of salt = $64.32 for a grand total of $114.32.

    Residential is completely different because your only using 1 bag if that and it almost never happens, I just add $2-3 to the cost of the plow I am already doing and then charge $6 for the bag, if any is left over I leave the bag at the door.

    If the commercial lot requires a lot of salt every time, I charge less for the bags. Remember bulk is half the cost so if they price shop you cant be too crazy on price.
    I try to get the contract that allows me to salt every time I plow, this way they only see the cost of the bags because I build the service call into the price of plowing.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2007