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Diesel powered snow melter?

Discussion in 'Equipment, Tools & Vehicle Pictures' started by RamPainting LLC, Jan 2, 2009.

  1. RamPainting LLC

    RamPainting LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 194

  2. Dissociative

    Dissociative 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,066

    seen em around...seems like here they only show up rarely when the stuff gets knee high...

    looks bad arse though so i wanna know too...
  3. shaunnshelly

    shaunnshelly Senior Member
    Messages: 143

    Yea.. Was going to buy one of those untill I saw the price $200K.... Don't think I can get the work to support that bill....
  4. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    they go thru a lot of fuel also.
  5. RamPainting LLC

    RamPainting LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 194

  6. TLC Snow Div.

    TLC Snow Div. Senior Member
    Messages: 548

    A large landscape company in town that i know of just purchased one. cost $3.5 million i was told.
  7. Bigfoot Brent

    Bigfoot Brent Senior Member
    Messages: 202

    Am I wrong, or does Neige on here have or used a Snowdragon?
  8. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    You need a tanker truck to run one...

    I looked into melter's a couple years ago.
    I don't know how a private contractor can make money with one as the "smaller" melter's use around 100 gallons of fuel per hour.You would need a fuel truck to run the thing for a full day.
    Then there is the whole EPA thing of putting contaminated water down a storm drain...
  9. PTSolutions

    PTSolutions PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,537

    how does it contaminate the water?? i thought they used a system for heating water and running it through tubes that were in the hopper and when the snow hit the tubes it would melt.
  10. KL&M Snow Div.

    KL&M Snow Div. PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,616

    That thing is really neat. Very pricey though.
  11. cretebaby

    cretebaby PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,162

    it (the snow melter) doesnt contaminate the water, the snow is already contaminated by it self
  12. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,935

    Neige did buy one this year. I dont know how well it has performed.
  13. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,935

    A friend of mine bought a Trecan melter this year at an auction. Still cost him $225K.

    To answer your question, and to validate his purchase, which is a perfect storm for the melters application, he plows 7 commuter train stations. All of which have offsite removal included in the yearly contract. Last year he spent 350K in trucking and disposal fees. I know the operator of the unit quite well, and actually saw the unit in action again yesterday.

    We ran some quick numbers...he burnt approx 5000 litres of fuel in 10 hours of operating. At a cost of $.60 a litre, it cost him $3000.00 in fuel, plus the loader, and guy monitoring the melter. He figured he's melting approx, 350-400 cubic yards an hour, as the loader can easily melt a heaping 5 yard bucket of snow a minute, which translates to (350 yds/25 yds per triaxle) = approximately 14 triaxle loads of snow per hour or 140 loads per 10 hour shift.

    Now if he had to truck it out, at an hour round trip, it would have cost him 140 loads X $50 a load disposal fees = $7000.00, plus 140 truck hours @ $80 = $11,200.00 + Loader. So he figures he's saving anywhere between 14-15K per night of melting.

    Needless to say, his initial investment is almost paid for as he already logged 150 hours (14 nights of melting).

    That my friend is how melting vs hauling makes this type of equipment feasible.
  14. Oshkosh

    Oshkosh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,655

    We don't get that consistent snowfall here...

    I guess if it snowed like that every week here it would be a worth while investment, so far the past few seasons we would be running at a loss...We also have snow dumps within ten minutes of town..
    The EPA here in the states makes it a difficult proposition.The snow is contaminated with salt,sand,any fluids that have leaked out of automobiles etc...Kind of like asphalt,it isn't hazardous waste going down but coming up it is.
    The snow melter's that are used "legally" here(Northeast) have to be pumped thew a filter trailer (The type you see at gas stations after a tank leak) or some sort of separator before being pumped into a public drain of any kind.
    The same deal with dumping snow in rivers,streams and the ocean.That is no longer allowed.They are even getting touchy about stock piling snow close to the edges of rivers,streams and the ocean here in the Northeast.
    I'm glad some have found a profitable way to run a melter.I know most are owned by airports and municipalities which are less concerned with profit just with results.Federal funding will do that for you...

  15. JohnnyRoyale

    JohnnyRoyale 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,935

    The environmental debate continues I guess, and probably the secondmost reason I wouldnt buy one. The first is I can't justify it for my winter scenario. So far he's had no problems with authorities or tree huggers, and he has written authozation from the transit authority allowing him to use it. That is one greay area they (the municipalities) definitely have to adress around here IMO.
  16. riverwalkland

    riverwalkland Senior Member
    Messages: 401

    I don't get that stupid snow dragon loader conveyor belt thing that loads the melter. You could load it with a 25K skid steer with a snow blower on it just as fast and not have to buy what looks like a 100k machine useless for anything else (except perhaps reenacting donkey-kong). Also what good are these machines when they are just pouring the melted snow all over the parking lot. It's just going to freeze and turn into the same thing that would be if all the snow was just repetitively driven over. At least let it run off a slope or into a drain...
  17. sjosephlawncare

    sjosephlawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 284

    um.....yea, no thanks. I'll just keep plowing the "old fashion way", that is if it snows here anymore?!!
  18. Supper Grassy

    Supper Grassy Senior Member
    Messages: 948

    Those things look sweet
  19. plowdog

    plowdog Member
    from MN
    Messages: 45

    Those are used quite often in minn. at municipal airports and large shopping malls. Large piles take up too many parking spots and take far too long to melt on their own. In general, the snow melter is placed over a storm sewer, the melted snow goes through a screen and filters the trash out. Come spring the catch basin in the sewer has the sand pumped out and all is well. As far as gas and oil going down the drain, that goes on year round- catch it in the snow, melt it and dump it down the sewer or the rain does the same thing in the summer.
    It's a very expensive piece of equip., but when others know you got it you can make a lot of money from those who have to haul off-site because they are out of room. I only know of 2 in the mpls/st.paul area that are used outside of an airport operation, when they start,they work until they are done- fuel usage is high!!
  20. RamPainting LLC

    RamPainting LLC Senior Member
    Messages: 194

    All the snow is going to melt anyway, right? I don't see how a snow melter or a warm day from mother nature, is going to keep the ground water from being "contaminated" with oil, gas, pee or whatever else is absorbed into it.