Yard Maintenance 101: Essential Safety Tips When Using a Small Wood Chipper
Upgrading your lawn or garden is a wonderful project to tackle. Maintaining a beautiful exterior provides a lot of benefits to your home. One significant benefit is it increases the value of your property. Another is it provides a comfortable and appealing space for your children to play and for you to hang out with your guests. Another is it cools the environment in your area. We can go on and on with the list as it’s very long.
This is how important maintaining and upgrading your yard is.
Lawn maintenance is a time-consuming and energy-draining task if you don’t have the right tools and equipment. Doing everything by hand will surely demand a lot from you. This is why it’s ideal to invest in lawn tools and equipment. One useful powered tool is the small wood chipper.
The Importance of Wood Chipper Safety
While the wood chipper makes your work convenient, it tends to be a dangerous machine to operate if you’re not knowledgeable and have zero experience with it.
Wood chippers come with sharp blades and if you don’t set it up properly or you accidentally misuse it, it can lead to serious accidents and injuries. They are designed to chip logs into smaller pieces, so working around it should require careful operation and safety precautions.
Written below are the 10 safety tips that you need to note each time you have to use your wood chipper:
1. Read the User’s Manual
Whether you’re new to the machine or you have some experience with it, it’s still important to read the user’s manual. The manual will come with everything you need to know. This includes the machine parts, safety instructions, technical specifications, and the limitations of the machine.
The small wood chipper comes with numerous parts and it’s a must that you’re familiar with them. You should notice right away if something is not right that might lead to danger.
2. Wear Protective Gears
There’s no requirement on what you have to wear when operating the wood chipper. However, it’s utterly important that your clothes are tightly fit. If your shirt is a bit loose, make sure that you tuck it in before turning the machine on. Refrain from wearing dangling pieces of jewelry and accessories, belts, straps, and other things that might get trapped in the machine.
Moreover, wear protective gears like safety goggles, hard hats, gloves, and durable boots among others.
3. Perform a Thorough Inspection of the Machine
This is to make sure that all parts are in the right places. Inspect first for visible damages, like cracks, broken hood latches, and damaged hinges. Then, check for the screws and bolts that they are all secured properly. Moreover, inspect the safety devices to ensure they’re functioning well.
4. Clear Your Area First
Check your lawn for anything that might cause the small wood chipper to trip. Make sure there are no obstructions like soda cans, kids’ toys, and other lawn tools like shovels and rakes. Also, make sure no one is nearby once you start working. Make sure that you do this before turning on the machine. This will allow for easy movement and operation of the machine.
Also, don’t let the wood chips stack too high to prevent them from falling into the machine. Once the wood chips are piling up, turn your machine off first and store your chips properly and away from the chipper.
5. Put on a Warning Sign
Putting up a warning sign will alert anyone that you’re operating with a powered machine. This will allow them to keep a distance and be extra careful when passing by. This will reduce the risks of accidents and injuries.
6. Start With the Lowest Setting
Starting with the lowest speed will allow you to perform further inspection of the machine. If you hear anything unusual, there’s a chance that something might be wrong with the wood chipper. Turn it off right away and have it checked again.
7. Be Careful Not to Overfeed the Wood Chipper
Overfeeding your small wood chipper will potentially lead to damaging it or worse, cause accidents and injuries. Make sure to only feed that qualifies the limitations of the machine. If the logs are too big, cut them into smaller sizes before loading them into the chipper. Take a look at this video on how to use the wood chipper properly to give you a better idea of how it should work.
8. Maintain Your Distance
Keeping your distance will prevent anything on your body to get caught in the wood chipper. Make sure that you step away immediately from your equipment once you load the logs into it.
9. Maintain a Clear Focus
While it’s important that you give your full attention to the task you’re currently doing, make sure to check your environment as well. Always be aware of people and animals getting nearer to you. Also, check the weather if it’s ideal for you to work with your chipper. Having awareness with your surroundings will greatly help in avoiding accidents.
10. Double Check for Harmful Materials
When feeding logs into your equipment, make sure that they’re all wood. Always doublecheck for other hazardous materials, like rocks, glass, or anything that may get into the machine that will potentially cause harm.
Having the right tools and equipment will surely make your work faster. Taking care of your lawn should be a priority and it’s only wise that you have a wood chipper to maintain and manage your trees. With the safety tips above, you can work with your machine with full confidence and lower risks of accidents.