Are You A Novice Wood Chipper? Use These 10 Safety Pointers!

tree stump wood autumn fallen leaves

A wood wha-?

A wood chipper is something you use to reduce entire pieces of timber to tinier bits. This machinery is effective in cleaning up debris such as dead tree limbs and fallen branches. 

They’re frequently used to clean up post inclement weather. A wood chipper can also help you clear up neglected brush and overgrown trees.

Utilising a wood chipper can spare you a lot of the time and labour involved with using a chainsaw or axe to slice the wood into manageable pieces. That level of power does mean there is serious responsibility involved. Failing to keep up with safety guidelines can result in severe injuries or death.

Whether you are a veteran user or someone just learning about wood chippers, you need to stay informed about operating the machine appropriately and safely. Keep reading for 10 safety tips you should know:

1) Read The Wood Chipper Manual:

Before you do anything else, you should sit down and read the operator’s guide for the wood chipper. You need to understand it, as it includes information you need regarding safety instructions, machine parts, operational constraints, and technical specifications. 

The experts from Global Machinery Sales note, “it is important to read the operator’s guide and understand it in addition to other important related literature. There are many moving parts on a wood chipper and it is definitely important to be aware of the potential dangers and usefulness of each of the components.”

2) Wear The Right Clothes:

Wear short-sleeved and tight-fitting clothing when you are working with any wood chipper. Be sure that your clothes are wrapped or tucked, and don’t wear anything that could become snagged on or fall into the machine, such as ties, belts, jewellery and so on. 

Standard safety gear you should have when operating any wood chipper includes steel-toed boots, sturdy cuff-free work gloves, ear protection, and of course a hard hat.

3) Inspect The Machine For Use:

Be sure you survey every component of your wood chipper before you use it. Do not operate it if you see anything indicating damage, like destroyed hood latches, worn hinges, or fractures. 

Make sure that all bolts and screws are tight. Assess the safety devices and controls to be sure they’re in appropriate working order.

The arborist experts at Cheaper Trees believe in the importance of safety. They say, “we never start a job without inspecting our equipment first. We believe it’s important to invest in your tools, and obviously it is so important to ensure your personal safety first and foremost.”

4) Clear The Safety Zone:

Clear the surrounding area of animals and people before you even start the machine. Establish a safety perimeter of at least 10 metres in every direction around your wood chipper. 

Mark this perimeter clearly with various warning devices, be it signs, barricades, or cones. If you see anyone or anything coming, switch the unit off immediately.

5) Clear Your Area:

Inside the safety zone, keep any tripping hazards and obstructions away from the machine. A clean area that’s free of obstructions permits safe and immediate operations, so don’t let the wood chips get too big. 

When they do, turn off the machine so you can move them away from your chipper. This will reduce the potential for anyone slipping or falling around the machine.

The experts at Wayne’s Landscaping know the importance of understanding your surroundings. They say, “you wouldn’t dream of painting your house without moving the furniture. When you start any job, you need to be aware of your surroundings. Move any hazards, give yourself space so you can do your best work. 

6) Start Off Slow:

Whenever you start up a wood chipper, do so by running it at its lowest setting. Listen to all the sounds coming out of your chipper. If you hear anything that sounds off or strange, then you might need to turn off the machine immediately to check for broken or loose components inside.

7) Lighten Your Load:

Don’t put pieces of wood that are too big or wide into the chipper. That increases your chances of hurting people, the machine and potential accidents. Only load the wood that is within your wood chipper’s limits. If you have to, cut your wood down to size before you feed your chipper.

8) Don’t Get Too Close:

Never linger close to your wood chipper. Step back from the machine the second the unit has the timber you have just inserted. This lowers your odds of getting trapped along with the item you just loaded into the machine.

9) Awareness Of Your Surroundings:

You need to stay mindful of your surroundings. Keep an eye out for deteriorating weather, or animals and individuals approaching you. Once the circumstances have changed enough that safe machine functions might be compromised, you should switch the unit off immediately.

10) Use it for its Intended Purpose:

Be sure that the wood you put into the chipper doesn’t have anything else in it or on it, such as rock, glass, or other things. They might get caught up in the gears or just shoot out like high-velocity projectiles. Never feed a wood chipper products that are anything but wood.

The experts at AirCare Solutions know the pain of misused objects. They say, “it’s so important to ensure you’re using the right tool for the right job. Misusing tools means they’re more liable to break and the job to be done poorly. It’s a real time waster on all ends.”

Desperate to learn more about tree removal? Visit Treezy.