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New to the site but not new to comercial plowing

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by frostservices, Nov 20, 2005.

  1. frostservices

    frostservices Member
    Messages: 63

    Hey all,
    I just wantyed to introduce myelf I live in mid west wisconsin IK have a bit different contract than most of you I plow out towers and the roads to them alot of challenges there since most towers are on the tallest hills they can find and the roads are just built to get into the site. I plow roads that a 2wd won`t drive in on in the summer Plus I do not start plowing till after the storm so if we get 18 inches with ice underneath it can be a real challenge.
    IO have about 39 sites atm I have to fugire an hour per site because there is on average 30 min drive time between sites. The good thing about it is the tower tecs drive 4x4s and most of my bad sites are in one area and I can get around to them the first day just leaving the flater sites till the next day. I really enjoy the challenage I wish there was less drive time though my route is 750 miles to plow all my sites so it gets to be late nights to even do it all ion 2 days!
    Just wanted to let you all know what I do
  2. Antnee77

    Antnee77 PlowSite.com Addict
    from RI
    Messages: 1,056

    Jesus Christ that's pretty ridiculous! I wouldn't even know where to start pricng that out! :salute:
  3. frostservices

    frostservices Member
    Messages: 63

    Basicly I have 2 rates one for easy roads and one for more challenging The way I decide is go to the site in the summer time and if you need to reach over band pull that litlle lever in it goes in the higher bracket (more risk of slide off ,time chaining up ect.) I average about $100 per hour but you have to rember I work with about a 6 inch trigger on the flater sites 2 inch on the stepper I also salt at the same reate as I plow if needed but if I`m there plowing I salt for 1/2 price and I supply the salt.
  4. gpin

    gpin Senior Member
    Messages: 390

    Given the distance, wouldn't it make more sense, economically and time wise, to sub out the sites that are farthest away from you, with your vehicles acting as a back up if needed? What's the point of all the driving in between? I have found anything longer than 8 - 10 hrs greatly increases the possibility of an accident or a mechanical failure.

    Is you life at home less than satisfactory? (Joke)
  5. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    a bobcat would be alot better at plowing roads like that. if you can even call them roads. basically a path cut out on the side of a hill.
  6. frostservices

    frostservices Member
    Messages: 63

    well the thing is to try to find subs that are responsible and that carry enugh insurance is a problem,there is alot of very expensive equipment on site I am required to carry a minium of 2,000,000 liability on myself and a sub would be required to have the same. I also give alot of detail to cleaning the sites up something that you can`t be sure of with a sub also there is the cost involved from what I have read on the site most of you guys wouldn`t touch most of these sites for under $100 per site so that would leave me with nothing. they don`t mind the fact that it takes some time for me to get all the sites opened up if theres one they need right away they let me know and I plan accordingly to get it opened up.
    with these big companies they like to deal with as few contractors as possible but they also like to save money if I hired subs on my sites I would have to double my prices and I would turn into a seceratary and I am sure the custumer would not be near as satified with the work. I like to know whats going on at my sites and the only way to do that is to be there.
    Asfor a bob cat I`m not sure it`s even an option some of these roads are a half mile plus(while some are only a few hundred feet) and then there is time to un chain a bobcat un load clear the site and reload chain down and drive to the next site I don`t think you would be able to do this in a timly manner ,and also there is the fact that after a storm the roads are not the best so towing a 6,000 # bobcat on a 2,000# trailer with a 7,000# truck is not what I wanna be doing.and also i feel bobcats are very unstable on hills my opinion of course as I don`t have much experince with bobcats.
    I do have a tractor with a 8 foot blower and a 9 foot back blade . So if we do really get dumped on which in the past 3 years I have only had to use it to open up one site.
    Chains all the way around on a pickup with a ton of salt in the back will move mountians ,I think it would surprise alot of people what you can do with a good pickup with a good set of chains and a bit of patience!
  7. drmiller100

    drmiller100 Senior Member
    from idaho
    Messages: 119

    look at the value to the customer. if you have been doing it for years, and they like you, you have a HUGE advantage. They know they can count on you, you get it done, and you are willing to drop everything and go dig out one of their towers in an emergency.

    If you have been doing it, and just submitting a new bid, then raise your prices 10-20 percent and write it off to fuel costs.

    In your bid mention you have the cost of maintaining and having ready your tractor. You've got to have the tractor, right?

    Look at it from the company's point of view. If you are doing a good job, and this is a periodic contract cuz of the bean counters, then any bids higher then yours will be thrown out. Close to you, and you have the history.

    A little Lower then you, and it proves your bid. A lot lower then you, and the other guy doesn't know what he is doing.

    Look at it from the bean counters point of view.f You have been doing the job. It will take a BIG, GREAT BIG reason to switch to someoen else and take a chance the tower won't be opened up.

    If you want to be creative, give them a flat rate for the year. Look at the biggest year over the last 10 years, raise it for fuel costs, and submit that as a flat rate bid. Beancounters like to budget, even if it costs them mroe in the long run. Again, make it an optional bid, you might be surprised.
  8. frostservices

    frostservices Member
    Messages: 63

    Hey Dr
    Very good advice I have got in very good with the tecs and they have alot of pull as to who plows thier sites . If they like me I pretty much have the bid because they have dealt with others in the past and ended up not being able to get into thier sites or getting stuck in there and haveing to pay wrecker bills plus plow out the site. I have only been plowing towers this will be my forth year with basiclly no previous experince plowing snow, but I am a country boy and always drove 4x4s off road and in the woods and fields so I knew what to do and what not to do. The seasonal contract is an interesting thought I am not sure what they would say to that but it sure don`t hurt to give it a try It would help them budget better I guess. Currently we are doing per push with a one year contract from Jan 1 to dec31 and I`ll be raising prices to cover fuel costs for next year . Hope I`m not boring you all.