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New to Plowing

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself to the Community' started by ryankulw, Oct 10, 2010.

  1. ryankulw

    ryankulw Junior Member
    from WI
    Messages: 7

    Hi.....came across this site over the net........hoping it will help me out this winter......
    I live in southeastern WI where we get a descent amount of snow every winter and this coming snow season I have 4 extra locations than I had last year. I just snow blowed at my house last year, but this spring my business expanded and I now own a small shop Im responsible for snow plowing. Also, my fiances business location needs to be done, her house, and our new house. So thats 5 properties to shovel. HELL NO im not using my toro snow blower all over town this year. So I need a plow to put on my truck, a 2002 Chevy Silverado 1500, nice truck that I use for my business. I have another truck but prefer to use the 1500 as it has higher mileage (122,000 miles) and more wear. I have some plowing experience but far from a seasoned vet. What type of plow would be best for my situation? None of the locations are very large. My house is probably the worst, as the street plow trucks like to plant all the snow on the block at the end of my driveway, as Im the only one with a driveway (damn alleys). Also, is my truck beefy enough for a plow? What do I need to consider? I have the z-71 pkg and push button 4 wheel drive, large tires. Any help or feedback would be greatlyt appreciated. Also to be considered, my new neighbors hinted they may want me to "help them out" , so that may be 3 more residential driveways. Total of 8 maybe........Damn this winter might be fun, or a nightmare LOL
  2. ggkkpp

    ggkkpp Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    I Used a chevy 1500 for my first season with a BOSS 7.6 worked out ok but if you plan on staying in the business you will need a stronger truck.
  3. ryankulw

    ryankulw Junior Member
    from WI
    Messages: 7

    Im not looking to get into the business, I do what I know, and thats stack bricks.......When I get so old and brittle that I cant shovel, I'll move to Florida LOL .Im just looking to pull my own weight and not have to hire anyone........I am self employed so I have the time to do it, and I cut costs any way I can. My life has thrown me a curve ball and now I have all these different properties to worry about. I also have a 2009 Silverado 2500 and a Infiniti QX56, but those are my everyday drivers. I dont want to have a plow on the truck i drive evryday......how much is a descent price for a plow package? new?used? I have budgeted about $2500-3000 for a plow installed on my chevy 1500........is that realistic? My knowledge of the snow trade is weak. Do i need to do anything to my front suspension or is my truck already capable of having the plow on all winter?
  4. ryankulw

    ryankulw Junior Member
    from WI
    Messages: 7

    If you know the SE Wi area and know a reliable plow dealer please post.....they will get some business from me
  5. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    check for a nice used blade on craigslit, ebay and the local papers. Your truck will handle it just fine.
    Boss and Sno-Way make great plows
    Have you checked on insurance?
  6. ryankulw

    ryankulw Junior Member
    from WI
    Messages: 7

    poly? or steel? if i find a plow used, how much are mounting kits roughly? difficult to install? what about wireless control? is it worth it? or problematic?
  7. ryankulw

    ryankulw Junior Member
    from WI
    Messages: 7

    insurance........... im covered through my business insurance to plow, operate heavy equipment etc. I am already fully insured to plow, although I never have.....insurance crooks LOL
  8. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,780

    I'd use caution when handing out advice like "your truck will handle it fine", with no qualifiers. You're going to have to watch the size of the plow (ok more specifically the weight), as a 1500 obviously can't hold the weight a 2500 or bigger can. A number of plow manufacturer websites will actually have a section that you can enter your truck and it will tell you what plows your truck can handle without going over the front axle weight rating. 1500's usually don't have transmissions built as heavily as the bigger trucks to be sure to take it easy on it. Always come to a stop before shifting. It wouldn't hurt to put a transmission temperature gauge on the truck as well. I'd also be sure to watch your coolant temperature, as I doubt the truck has any sort of heavy duty cooling system, and a plow will really block the flow of cold air to the radiators.
  9. second income

    second income Member
    Messages: 82

    Grab a used plow, western or boss 7.5 pay no more than $2,000 for everything, for the type of work you will doing a 1500 series truck will be fine. That truck will even handle a small tailgate spreader. Better to let the older truck rot out than the newer one. That truck will not overheat if used during snow storms and traveling at moderate speeds. One of my trucks is a 1998 f-50 with the light duty Western. It has held up very well, I plow carefully with it, I keep my plowing speeds within reason and I plow with the storm. I replaced the cutting edge with the edge for the pro plow because the lightweight plow has a thinner edge and it was wearing a bit fast. The only thing you may want to add to the truck would be a second battery because if you are doing a lot of driveways and small parking areas your rpms wont be real high and the battery could get tired when you have the heater, the defroster and the headlights on. Good luck
  10. Pinky Demon

    Pinky Demon PlowSite.com Addict
    from Ohio
    Messages: 1,121

    I'd use the 2500 and get a good, newer plow like a Boss V that is easy to use, aerodynamic, (for a plow at least) and that pops on and off quickly. This way, you can have a bigger plow and not have to worry about the weight as much, and you can take it on and off easily when it is not snowing and you don't need it.

    Besides, with the amount of plowing you are doing, you will incur a bit of wear and tear on that truck, but nothing to really worry about, unless you plow like an idiot.
  11. plowatnight

    plowatnight Senior Member
    from Mn
    Messages: 305

    Good Advice...wait, I thought the guy DIDN'T want to put the plow on the new truck. I'm sorry, just thinking that if he's bright enough to have his own business stackin bricks, he can surely figure out how to plow with a 1/2 ton. I see hundreds of guys plowing w/ 'em around here.
  12. onsight

    onsight Senior Member
    Messages: 160

  13. cti531

    cti531 Member
    Messages: 60

    Not sure where in SE Wisconsin you are but I have heard good things about these dealers:

    Chico's in Kansasville
    Truck Outfitters in Butler
    Ninnemans in Caledonia
  14. MileHigh

    MileHigh PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,827

    I agree with the guys who say "you'll be fine"

    I see guys with plows on half tons everywhere...I've had one plowing for the last 4 years with no issues, and my buddies at three years with no issues other than cosmetic.

    Try not go over a 720# plow..and throw about that in ballast in the bed behind the rear axle against the tailgate, and don't plow like it's indestructible.

    But don't ever get it wrong...a 3/4 ton is twice the truck any half ton wishes it could be. PERIOD
  15. Pinky Demon

    Pinky Demon PlowSite.com Addict
    from Ohio
    Messages: 1,121

    Just my opinion. It's what I would do.
  16. ggkkpp

    ggkkpp Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    I think he will do ok as long as he has a light plow........ He has a z71 off road package with stiffer than most 1500 suspension and he only has a few pushes to do...... as long as he is not beating the hell out of the truck he will be fine. I started with a Tahoe with a boss 7.6 SD and a few small lots......... Made it one season and made enough $ to buy a 3/4 ton. I did put 500 pounds in the back to ballast the truck out.
  17. ryankulw

    ryankulw Junior Member
    from WI
    Messages: 7

    ok.....so now heres the deal.......ended up getting a western 7.5 plow on my 1500......near perfect condition installed $2600 including tax.........installed at the local gmc dealer in northern suburb milwaukee area......i am happy with it.......so now i have the plow and im getting all these requests for plowing businesses with small parking lots......i already have 5 locations, all very small driveways really, one has a very small parking lot.......one location is my rental property on the other side of town and a nearby business owned by a friend wants me to quote them for plowing and salting......id like to do it to help with the cost of the plow this year but i figure a spreader would be in order.......what is a descent spreader that a 1500 can handle without removing the tailgate? remember im doing mostly driveways except for the business who wants an estimate......tried to do a little research online research but its hard to know when everyone has good and bad reviews.......i guess i would need something for small commercial.....but something that fits on a 1500.....also .......and idea on what to charge for plowing and salting? i have a rough idea but i dont want to be too high or give away my service either..........also, because im doing all my own properties really, do u charge everytime you go out? like lets say it snows 6 inches....do i come out after 3 inches, plow and salt, and then come back again, and charge her twice? or do i wait for all the snow to fly first.....heres the kicker ......her business is open 24 hours.......it is a 24 hr medical facility, at night theres maybe a couple cars there but she definately needs it pretty clear for her customers, this is like an urgent care place......no ambulances or anything like that, just drive yourself type place.....let me know what u guys think........her lot isnt super small but holds maybe 20 cars roughly.....and the plowing area basically circles the building.......any help or comments are greatly appreciated......Thnaks guys
  18. Dog3

    Dog3 Junior Member
    Messages: 8

    I started my business in '94 with a new Chevy half ton and a new 7'6" Western plow. I got rid of the half ton in '97 (weak tranny), but I used it for commercial lots as well as residential. Take it easy on the 1500 and you should be ok for your purposes, but if you keep taking more accounts think about a 2500HD-ideally with a plow prep package. Good luck this winter!
  19. Tradesman81

    Tradesman81 Junior Member
    Messages: 17

    Hey everyone, hows it going? I'm new to the site and this is my second season plowing for a company out of Naperville. I use his atv to clear sidewalks for a few accounts. I have enjoyed it so far, although its pretty cold out on a four wheeler. I have been contemplating putting a plow on my truck to start making some real money. I have 1/2 ton 2001 Chevy Silverado 4x4 with 170k miles and plan on getting a 3/4 ton for next season. So what I'm wondering is should I go ahead a get a heavier plow now (Thinking of a Western 7 1/2' or 8' Pro) or should I just wait to get the 3/4 ton next season