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What is a reasonable average route time for residential service

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by TonawandaNY, Oct 26, 2009.

  1. TonawandaNY

    TonawandaNY Senior Member
    Messages: 160

    I was up to 2am this morning laying out my route trying to get a good feel of how many more customers I can take on before it becomes to many and good service suffers for it!

    Total mileage of the route is 18.6 miles and most of it is navigating through local streets.In good weather, google maps says it will take me about 60min worth of driving time from the start to the end of my route.

    That does not include the time to plow the driveways. All my customers except for 4 are within a 3/4 mile radius of my house. I have 4 customers that make a box around my route which are all about 3-5miles from each other.

    For those of you that do residential plowing how long does it take you to plow your route from front to back? I have about 30 customers now and would like to throw a couple more in there. If it takes me 3.5 hours to finish my route the first time is that to long?


  2. merrimacmill

    merrimacmill PlowSite.com Addict
    from MA
    Messages: 1,823

    I don't think 3.5 hours is to long at all. Sounds just about right to me.
  3. cubicinches

    cubicinches PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,415

    I agree. We have 14 residential routes, and we try to keep them all 3-4 hours. Anything longer than that and it gets outta hand during a big storm, or during the day when you're battling traffic. It all really depends on what kind of service your customers expect. I know if I stretch them out longer than that, the phone starts ringing like crazy!
  4. buckwheat_la

    buckwheat_la 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,254

    wow, i guess different places have different expectations, here we keep about 150-250 residential, are agreement is once every 24 hours, so we start the morning at about 6am, and usually have everything wrapped up around 2-3 in the afternoon, we rotate our customer lists around so everyone gets a time when they are done first in the mornings and everyone gets a time in the afternoon too. haven't had too many complaints, we also allow for people to make specially arrangements for specific days, example i have a tea party today, can we make sure my place it done before 10am, no problem.
  5. Bolt-1

    Bolt-1 Senior Member
    Messages: 103

    I also do that with my customers. It keeps them very happy to know that this type of service is just a phone call away. I have 39 resi. that I take care of that I split with a good friend of mine 60/40. (well they are my accounts). The route is spread out quite a bit so for a 4" snow fall it takes us about 9 hours to do. ABOUT 5 PLOWING AND 4 @ THE LOCAL PUB when we're sure we're done for that storm. And if needed i'm very lucky to have a third to call if needed. (another good friend).
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2009
  6. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    I always found five hours to be enough. That's for the "easy" pushes, so heavier snows would stretch that out to maybe 8-10 hours. But I wasn't pushing myself or the equipment.
  7. born2farm

    born2farm 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,310

    I keep mine between 2-3 hours for now. The biggest reason (and I know it makes me sound like a wimp) but with me and my employee both being in high school, I dont want to head out any berfore 4am on a school day if they dont cancell. This also helps me meet my goal of having everyone plowed out by 5pm. Also since I plow on a quad, a 6-8in storm can double my route time.
  8. Shop's Lawn

    Shop's Lawn Senior Member
    Messages: 147

    I usually have planned 30-40 accounts to one truck. On our average 3-4" snow falls we are out 8-12 hrs for each truck/each storm. bigger snow falls like 8-12" we are out 14-16 hrs. We seem to keep everyone happy and average 91% return of customers every year. These accounts are mixed commerical and residential- I go by geograhical location of each job and try to do like a big circle around town.
  9. TonawandaNY

    TonawandaNY Senior Member
    Messages: 160

    I wish I had bought me a boss 7'2 V plow instead of my 7'6" str western. I booked up for the season and now I am turning people away because I dont have the resources to get the job done.

    I am not big enough nor do I have the storage for another truck. I hate turning down work
  10. Neige

    Neige Sponsor
    Messages: 2,215

    We keep at 4 hrs over that we are pushing it
  11. wdcs1

    wdcs1 Member
    Messages: 74

    last year was 9-10 hrs for 4" storm. Have stayed with a great mix of commercial and apartment complex's. They seem ok with if I explain comm comes first, and that need to wait on the tenants to leave for work before job is plowed. Have hell to pay on day time storms. Haul a** for cash! Should not be to bad this year picked up another truck still looking for more jobs. All r within 5 mile radius
  12. TonawandaNY

    TonawandaNY Senior Member
    Messages: 160

    i ended up booking 33 residentials and 1 light commercial. the commercial does not open until 10am. My route is 95% within a 1/4 mile of my house. The commercial and 4 other residentials are all within 5 miles of my house.

    Now I wish I could afford the back plow or the Boss 7'6" V... Maybe next year.
  13. ponyboy

    ponyboy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,104

    our contracts say we have 8 hours after the storm has ended and there are 60 houses per truck they usually get done with in 6 hours have had the same houses for many years
    our commerical 1.5 inch trigger and keep main roads open till the event is over then pow curb to curb and shovel walks and salt we have 4 hours for that 2 trucks for the houses 6 trucks for comm and 1 truck for shovletrs