Private roads

Western Michigan
I've gotten some requests to bid a couple private roads here this week. About 1200-1600 feet long, average 8-10 homes per road. I will be bidding them based on plowing with a pickup and straight blade.

Any suggestions on pricing? Our average drive on these roads is a $200.00 seasonal charge, with a 2 inch trigger. If the raods were plowed with the same 2-3 inch trigger, I would guess an average of 12plows at 3 inches, or 16 at at 2 inches.

Geoff- I know you do many of these. Any help?


GeoffD Veteran

First, before ya bid.

Do you have a V-box spreader?
If no, can you find a subcontractor?

If they don't want sanding/salting then don't go near the account ( unless there is a lot of sun).

Plowing private roads is a totaly different animal because there can be a lot of trafic.

I would suggest a 1" ( yes 1" ) treatment trigger. I don't care if you plow or salt the road. The key to keeping priavte roads in good shape, is plowing to bare tar every storm. If you leave any snow, and it turns to ice, it is just going to get worse all winter long, and then it is going to be a pain to plow. I had one road once, that said no sand or salt, well the cars packed down the snow some, the plows couldn't scrape it all. With out being able to melt up the hard pack, and replow. It just became a mess all winter.

I charge a minimium $ 9000.00 per mile per storm up to 12", then any snow accumulation after 12" is billed out by the hour.

So take that $ 900.00 ( if 1/2 mile its 500, ect) and multiply it by X amount of storms.

Or i will do the math for ya. Lets say 18 plows at 1"

1600/5280 = .303 of a mile

To make this easier in my head, i am going to use 1,000 per mile

$ 1000.00 * .303 = $ 303 dollars per storm round it up to 350 * 18 = 6300 dollars a year.

Here are some of your veraibles

How many passes up and down.
Circle at the end
How much sand/salt

Remember rates are different from state to state, you could make more or less.


Western Michigan

If you plow at 1 inch, explain how you handle an event of 8 inches? How many visits? And would your price include a limited number of passes, and then a per plow charge after that minimum? Or, are you giving them unlimited service with the prices you stated.

GeoffD Veteran
Ok 8" storm, this is what happens.

Trucks hit the road at about 2" the first road gets plowed at like 2" the last at Like 4" Then the circle starts over, after some orther accounts. Generally there is like 6" of accumulation at that point, so 4" on the first road. When we finish the last road the storm might be done.

I try to plow every 3-5" of accumulation, for roads.
Drives every 6"
Lots as much as we can.

To make it simple, on an 8" storm 2-3 visits, sanding at the end (if during the day, an aditional visit, to replow any slush). The 900 dollars may include sanding, depending on the road (there may be an adition charge to cover extra sand) . There are just so many differences in this biz. If t


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