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Liquid de-icer pricing input?

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by hickslawns, Nov 30, 2005.

  1. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 617

    Anyone willing to help out a guy getting into liquid? I have done my homework. I am ready to buy or build my setup. I think I am going with Caliber M1000. Where i am a little uneasy is my pricing. I was thinking like a $40-50 trip charge, and $6 per gallon applied. Does this seem in the ballpark? Am I too low per gallon or too high? Would appreciate the input, as I am new to applying liquid and don't want to fall on my face. Thanks. Phil
     
  2. szorno

    szorno Senior Member
    Messages: 308

    I think you have to be careful here. You can overprice easily. Figure out how much it costs you per gallon to spread the Caliber. (Take total sq ft you plan on doing, divide by 1000 to get the gallons. Then figure the fuel cost to spread, and divide it by the gallons so you have a fuel cost per gallon.) Add the cost of the Caliber per gallon. Now you have a raw cost per gallon to get it delivered to the pavement. (not including other truck expenses)
    Then look at how much per gallon you want to make. I usually figure $1.00 to $1.50 per gallon delivered. (comes to $150 to $200 per hour profit depending on spray rig) Then price each account by the gallon. Round off the $$ for easier understanding by the customer.
    Hope this helps.
     
  3. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 617

    szorno- So if I am reading this correct, you are saying $1.00-1.50 per gallon profit? Cost of the liquid is $1.55 if I drive over an hour to pick it up. I am not ready to invest in storage units to handle an entire tanker truck load delivered.

    So if I pickup 300 gallons per trip my cost to cover time and fuel might be more like $2.00-$2.50/gal.
    Now figure fuel and labor to spray. Say I am dropping 100 gal at a large account I am guessing roundtrip time of 3-4 hours=$15 fuel, and $60-80 payroll.
    Equipment costs are going to be around $1500-2000, but I don't know what to expect for life of equipment or maintenance.
    I am guessing $200-500 annual maintenance to cover painting bare metals, replacing nozzles, and an occasional pump or motor.
    Can I get 5 years out of a setup? If so, then annual equipment costs are $300-400.
    If I am able to spray 1000 gallons per year or 10 trips at 100gal each, I can figure annual costs. Fuel=$150, payroll=$700, equipment=$350, maintenance=$350, material=$2000, for a total annual cost of $3550 or $355 per trip.
    So with $50 trip charge and $6/gal applied for 100 gal I am looking at $650 gross or $295 net profit per trip. Divide that by the 4 hour roundtrip and I am making $73.75 per hour. This is acceptable to me if I am not off on my numbers. It should cover truck costs, insurances, unexpected items, profit, and uugh taxes.

    Let me know if you think any of these numbers are way out of line. Thinking out loud on a post like this might help out the other guys interested, but if I am off on my guestimations in costs or time then I have just screwed up a lot of people thinking about getting into this. :eek:
     
  4. fulltiltwill

    fulltiltwill Senior Member
    Messages: 204

    Hey Hicks, I was looking into liquid de-icing aswell. In my research I found that the Caliber M1000 had to be applied in a stream form for best results. Did you see the same thing, or are you going to spray it like you would with other brand de-icers? The picture I saw was on a county truck and it looked like the nozzles were 12" apart. Just dind't look like it would melt all the snow. What are your thought? Also looked into M2000 as a pretreating agent for my salt. One other question do you know if regular type chemical spray equipment is able to use liquid de-icers.
    Thanks for any feed back Adam
     
  5. fulltiltwill

    fulltiltwill Senior Member
    Messages: 204

    Hey Szorno, I did a search and saw that you have been using liquid since 03? In your experience would you recomend going full bore into a set up, or maybe start out pre treating with M2000 or magic. Right now I go through about 6000# of salt an event with all my accounts. If I did get into a sprayer system how long do you think it would take to become proffitable by applying before the storm?
    Thanks for any thoughts Adam
     
  6. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 617

    Adam, This could be okay. Still learning, but I know it spreads out when it hits the ground. The county or state trucks may have separate pretreat setups then salt for after the snow. Our state pretreats liquid with a salt brine solution which is rock salt. Spraying that on dry pavement will allow it to spread out when the moisture activates it. This is our local DOT which may be different at different locals. As far as not melting the snow it is simple. More snow=more liquid. Maybe 2-3 times as much. This is where I plan on pretreating lots with liquid and salting in addition. It is a combination effort.
    Yes, a lot of guys do use their fert rigs. I am building my own, but a lot just use their gun. Big lots may require a boom though. You might have to change your nozzle tips to get the right flow rates or application rates. I have dealt with Ted at Syntech and he has been real helpful with providing info. Different application rates and other info from him has really helped me in my decisions.
    As far as paying for itself depends on billing. Per event would work if you charge enough. Seasonal contracts i think you would benefit from better service delivered to customer and less salt put down. Also would make salt more effective at lower temps if pretreating your piles.
     
  7. fulltiltwill

    fulltiltwill Senior Member
    Messages: 204

    Hicks, been doing alot of reading about liquid anti-icing. For this season I think I am going to get into treating my salt with caliber M2000 on the really cold nights. Then I plan on using M1000 on the walks of my medical buildings, to try and get the hang of the product and see how well it does to pre treat. That way if it does'nt work as well as I hoped I'm not out a whole lot of money. Idealy for next year I would have a spray rig on my duelly. Then I just need to sell my clients on seasonal contracts, which I don't think will be hard to do. Where have you found caliber products? I have found a company on line called Dultmeir, they sell M1000 for 1.49/g. I have not found any one to get the M2000 though. In the meantime I'll be researching on how best to build my own rig. If you build one you will have to let me know how it works out for you.
    Thanks Adam
     
  8. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 617

    Ted at Syntech. Out of Toledo, shouldn't be too far for you. Or try www.syntechproducts.com

    Good luck and I will let you know how the home built spray rig works. To be honest, I am going to use a few ideas from posts on here. I have 14 pages printed off from the post where szorno posted his pictures awhile back.
     
  9. fulltiltwill

    fulltiltwill Senior Member
    Messages: 204

    Thanks for the info Hicks. I'll plan on contacting him this week.
     
  10. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    mix tank

    Hey this is my batch tank for mixing up my own liquid 250 gal at a time

    mix tank.jpg
     
  11. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    spray tank

    This is the 50 gal spray tank in the b2's

    spray tank.jpg
     
  12. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    spray boom

    this is the boom it folds out to 12 feet wide . I can spray only or add the spray to any type of dry chemical ...

    spray boom.jpg
     
  13. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    spayer folded

    Ok this one is the 2 types i use one folds out (left) fixed (right) each has its advantages

    spray boom 2.jpg
     
  14. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    Hope this is a better pic

    spray boom 2.jpg
     
  15. BSDeality

    BSDeality Senior Member
    Messages: 736

    Fernaldude,

    What product do you use? How do you like the results?

    I'm looking into starting up an Ice Mgt company here, from what I can tell no one does it around here, heck, hardly anyone even uses salt, just sand.

    Any Tips/info is greatly appreciated
     
  16. szorno

    szorno Senior Member
    Messages: 308

    Hey guys,
    Sorry to leave you hanging. I changed internet providers and things have been busy. I use Caliber M1000. I have yard tanks totalling 4500 gallons. I use about 300 gallons per pre-storm treatment on 8 customers. I pay one flat fee of $300 to have the tanks filled each year. My cost doing this is quite a bit under yours due to the volume discount. The yard tanks are not that expensive so I never looked at chasing each truckload. My supplier is 80 miles away too.
    Fulltiltwill- I would look at the market you are in carefully. Supplier and availability of liquid is key. Treated salt is a nice upgrade in performance, and only a small extra cost the way I hear it. We don't use any salt at all. Liquid as a pre-treat is quite cost effective, and envronmentally more friendly. (unless you choose salt brine) I do not normally recommend using liquids as a post treat except to clean up the white film left after plowing. Do not try to use liquids on an unplowed lot. It just doesn't penetrate or work very well at all. If you use Caliber or Magic on sidewalks you may have a tracking in problem for the maintenance people to deal with.
    I will try to keep up a little better, so ask any other questions you like.
    BTW- it is about -10*F here tonight, snowing lightly and my caliber are down to barely working. It is still better than nothing, because it won't stay that cold for more than 36 hrs. then the thaw has a head start.

    :nod:
     
  17. fernalddude

    fernalddude PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,105

    making your own

    BS i make my own from dry mag or cal salt takes to long to break down zorno has so many regs in his area it is a must to use frendly chemicals .....
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2005
  18. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 617

    Thanks for the info Szorno! Good to know where the effectiveness drops off as temperature drops. Still better than rock salt. I am curious how you are able to buy so cheap. My quoted price was $1.55/gal plus delivery or I go pick it up. You are (or were) paying $300 for 4500 gallons? Is this a typo? Maybe a different product? Just seems like huge differences. Could you help on what nozzles are needed on the agricultural spray rig? Also, did you have to do anything to the pumps to moderate the flow? Sorry about so many questions, but your replies have my ears perked up!:) I am psyched about getting into this, and need as much info as possible to make my decisions on pricing and equipment setup. Thanks, Phil
     
  19. szorno

    szorno Senior Member
    Messages: 308

    oops. I should have caught this. The $300 is the delivery charge. Add in the cost of the liquid (.75-1.00 per gallon depending on what I get). The season fill up cost is about $3600 this year. Sorry for the mis-understanding.
    As for spray nozzles, you can use ag equipment, because the viscocity of mag chloride based liquids is just a little thicker than most ag sprays. Use a rain-drop type fan nozzle matched to the natural pressure of your pump fro pre-treatment. There are some fan nozzles set for 30-50 psi, and some for 10-20 psi. Make sure the nozzles match the pump. The raindrop type will keep the drops a little bigger and cuts the amount of spray that floats down the street on a breeze. Use a pencil or stream type nozzle for ice-cutting when needed. The pump generally doesn't need any mods until you start trying to computerize your flow control.
    Email me if you want to talk about a specific case.
    Nice rigs there fernaldude....:nod:
     
  20. hickslawns

    hickslawns Senior Member
    Messages: 617

    Much appreciated szorno! I will let you know if I need any more help. I need to just go out and try a setup first and then fine tune it. Fernaldude was majorly helpful in our phone conversation, and I am pumped to try out some things. Sounds like I am going into mad scientist mode and mixing my own as well!