19 Ways To Remove A Tree Stump

I’ve had to remove any tree stumps while maintaining various rental properties.

What is the best way to get rid of a tree stump? A tree stump can be ground, pulled, burned, or rotted to eliminate it. Grinding is the quickest method, but it is also the most expensive. A tree stump removal is the most labor-intensive but the least expensive option.

There are two methods of decay: rotting, which takes years, and burning, which takes days. Let’s get started investigating your options and seeing what will be the most effective course of action.

Each method of removing a tree stump has advantages and disadvantages. Depending on your budget and the stump’s location, the best course of action will be determined.

Throughout this detailed book, you’ll discover a whopping 19 alternative approaches to getting rid of a tree stump. They’re all here:


  • Using a stump removal service
  • renting a stump grinder
  • The use of a chainsaw to grind
  • A grinding attachment for a chainsaw.


  • Use a pry bar to dig and cut holes
  • Using the Services of a Repairman, Jack
  • Tractors can be used to pull out.
  • Pull out of the driveway with your car.
  • System of pulleys


  • A Burn Barrel for a Fire Pit
  • Swedish Candle
  • Rocket
  • Stove Charcoal


  • Compost
  • Stump Digging Machine
  • Epsom Salt
  • Stump Out Salt

Several of these ideas have been tested by myself or others I know. Trying a few will soon reveal which are worthwhile and a complete waste of your time. I’ve also learned a few strategies for doing it right. A lot of the labor goes into making a YouTube video, but you won’t see it all in the clips you see.

A famous YouTube video on removing a tree stump convinced me to give it a whirl. It didn’t work for me even though I followed the directions to the letter. Then I came upon some of the most efficient methods.

But first, let’s speak about how much it costs to have a tree stump removed.

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Cost of Stump Grinding

A tree stump’s removal cost is the most important consideration when deciding which method to use. The most expensive option is to grind the material. Expect to pay between $3.00 and $4.50 per inch for professional services to have a stump ground.

However, renting a stump grinder is more time-consuming and difficult. If you don’t have to acquire special tools, removing a tree stump can be done for pennies on the dollar. A shovel, chain, or jack are all common household items. Blisters are inevitable if you decide to remove them by hand.

When using a tractor or even a vehicle, attach a chain to the stump, and you won’t have to strain your back so hard. Aside from the fact that it requires a significant expenditure of your time, burning is essentially free. Do you know how much your time is worth?

Leaving a fire unattended is never a good idea, and in most cases, it’s illegal. The consequences could be dire if you set the neighborhood on fire. I’ll describe a few ways to speed things up or make an effort worthwhile.

A stump removal product such as stump out, stump remover, or salt is the only expense of decomposing a stump. These are all under $15.In my experience, rotting stumps don’t work, and these stump removers may slow down the decaying process.

Grind a Stump 4 Ways

Stump grinding is the most tried and effective method of stump removal. There are roughly four ways to grind a stump.

You can use a chainsaw, a stump grinder, or a stump grinder chainsaw attachment to remove stumps. Let’s take a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Alternatively, I’ve seen folks modify an edger to function as a stump grinder as a do-it-yourself project. Because they lack the power to get the job done, these don’t work. You’d be better off with an angle grinder than a hammer.

Stump Removal and Grinding

If you’re short on time but short on cash, you should consider hiring a stump grinder service. As a bonus, if your sprinkler pipes are damaged during stump grinding, most companies will repair them for you.

Service of a stump grinder The stump grinders you use will be far superior to those you can hire. Better and faster results than if you were to complete the task independently.

When a stump is crushed down, all that’s left is a pile of wood shavings. Keep it for your flowerbeds or garden even though they’ll take it away for you. It’s an excellent weed barrier and soil builder in one.

Estimating the Price of Stump Removal

However, a common misconception is that the height of a stump is measured by a stump grinder service, not from that point upwards. At ground level, they measure from the widest point to the broadest point of the stump or root.

In the meanwhile, you may figure out the price tag for yourself. Measure from the widest points of the exposed stump or root on the ground level. Add $3.50 to the number of inches to get the total cost.

Although it may cost more or less depending on where you live in the United States, the average is $3.50.

  • $84 for a 24-inch stump
  • $126 equates to a 36-inch stump
  • $168 for a 48-inch stump

There is a $200 minimum fee for most stump grinding services. If you have a lot of stumps, renting a stump grinder may be the most cost-effective option.

A Stump Grinder Can Be Rented

Stump grinder rental costs, on average, $190 per day.

The charges were a two-hour minimum and $58 per additional hour at a nearby equipment rental store. The one-day fee was $275.00. If you need to rent a trailer to transport it, add $20 to those charges.

If you need to remove several stumps at once, or if you want to split the cost with a neighbor, renting a stump grinder may make sense. You might save money by working with a professional instead. Grinding a stump surely can be a lot easier than taking your stump out by hand, which we will explain later.

Chainsaw Stump Removal Instructions

However, grinding out your stump with a chainsaw has a few negatives.

The chain on your chainsaw will get worn out if you use it in the dirt. Sharpening a chain requires time and money. Rocks in the stump may cause your chain to break.

Renting a stump grinder is more expensive than purchasing a new chain. As a result, here’s how to use a chainsaw to grind down a stump.

  • Cut the stump down to the ground level by digging around it.
  • As low as you can, get the stump down.
  • You need to grind the stump down to at least 4 to 6 inches below ground level by cutting a crisscross pattern into the stump.
  • Get a new one.

If you want to grow grass, you only need a few inches of dirt to get it started.

Grinder for Chainsaw Stump

This is so nice; I love it. I’ve seen a man create one from scratch, and I’ve also seen places to buy ones. Unless you remove a lot of little stumps every year, it’s not worth the effort.

A little stump grinder is all that is needed in this scenario.

How to Remove a Stump from a Tree

It takes a lot of effort and can result in back injuries if you try to pull a tree stump. My hat is off to the early pioneers who cleared woods to sow fields before modern machinery, as I’ve removed a few stumps by hand.

You may remove your tree stump in several different ways, some of which I’ll explain here. The best part is that you’ll save lots of money by not hiring a professional to do the work for you. This may be simpler than you think for smaller stumps.

A shovel and a chisel

This summer, I decided to remove the stump of an Aspen tree that had perished in my yard. As I discovered, the stump only needed to be a few inches below the grass.

I used my reciprocating saw to remove the stump by digging the grass around it. It took around 25 minutes to remove the stump from my 8- to 10-inch-diameter Aspen tree.

You’d be hard-pressed to tell it even existed. Even with a stump grinder, the stump is only ground down to 5 to 6 inches. In my post on removing a tree stump by hand, you will discover even more detailed instructions.

Pry the bar with your fingers.

Depending on what you’re doing, you may need to remove all of the stump’s roots before putting cement or planting a garden on top.

If you’re willing to put in a lot of effort, this may be the ideal option for you. Here’s how to remove a tree stump with a pry bar in such a case.

  • To get to the stump, you’ll need to dig around it.
  • Using a hand saw or reciprocating saw, remove each root.
  • Leverage the stump’s removal with a metal pry bar.

This is a good test of your manliness, so don’t hesitate. You are a true man’s man if you can do this task without stopping.

Keep Your Back Safe Use a Hi-Jack

Tree stumps can be removed with a Hi Jack or a Handyman jack. A chain, a handyman’s jack, two 2x4s, and a bolt are all you’ll need.

  • First, cut the 2x4s to 6 feet and drill a hole in the top of each one.
  • Make a tripod out of the 2x4s by fastening them to the jack’s top.
  • The jack’s arm is attached to a chain that has been wrapped around the stump multiple times.
  • Using a shovel, remove the stump completely.

Using a pry bar is still preferable, although digging around the stump and chopping a few roots may be necessary.

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A Tractor Is Needed To Remove A Tree Stump.

A tractor is an obvious choice if you have access to one. Renting one is an option as well. A tiny excavator can be rented for less than $300 per day.

It would be well worth your time and money to use it in landscaping. How quickly and easily multiple apple trees could be removed when I utilized a tractor surprised me.

In general, a larger tractor is required for larger trees. My father’s little Kubota tractor cut down these apple trees quickly because they weren’t particularly large.

Pull Tree Stump Out With A Vehicle

Using a vehicle to pull out a tree stump can be a good option and can be a terrible one. When I was a kid, my brother and I used our suburban to clear a vast patch of evergreens.No matter how fantastic the four-wheel drive was, the lawn was still covered in large tire prints.

Recent experience with a two-wheel-drive truck and a concrete pull amazed me at the amount of digging required to get it free. A close-line pole can’t compare to the sturdiness of a tree trunk, can it?

When using a vehicle to remove a stump, utilize a sturdy chain or tow line. Don’t go cheap on this because if it snaps while you are pulling, your vehicle could get damaged, or worse, someone could get injured.

Depending on the type of stump, a lot of digging and even root cutting may be required to remove the stump.

Make careful you attach the hook to the vehicle’s metal frame. The best way to hook up is with a tow package, and some cars come equipped with special hooks for when you are being towed.

A professional stump grinding service would have been far more cost-effective if this had been done correctly in the first place.If you decide to choose this route, be sure to carefully consider your options and follow the advice provided below.

System of Pulleys

This is one of those concepts that, despite its practicality, is just plain cool to think about. I’ve only seen it in YouTube vids. He put his tractor’s pulling strength on a massive tree stump to good use using a slew of pulleys.

It must have been a huge accomplishment to have all the necessary equipment and the time to set it all up, hoping that nothing goes wrong. Just watch the video and then use a different method like burning to get rid of the stump.

Burning a Stump in 5 Ways

A stump can be burned. However, it takes a long time to burn an entire stump. Following the lead of a popular YouTube video, I attempted to turn my stump into a rocket stove but failed miserably.

I was disappointed, but it was a worthwhile experiment in learning. Most people forget that a stump must be completely dry before burning it.

To burn a stump that has been chopped down, you must wait at least one year after the initial removal of the stump. Even if the stump is on your grass, the sprinklers will still wet it.

Other considerations include how long it will take and whether or not it is safe to burn. Burning a stump near your house or a neighbor’s vinyl fence is what you want to do. As a result, I’ve ranked the practicality of each of the following five methods for destroying a stump.

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A fire ring

The best approach to get rid of a tree stump is to burn it like this. The easiest way to start a fire is to surround the stump with rocks and light the rocks on fire.

Hotdogs can be cooked in the oven. Make s’mores. Tell ghost stories into the wee hours of the morning. In the summer, this tree stump is used as a fire pit. The stump will burn down until it is completely gone with each passing period.

At least you’re making memories and having fun while getting rid of a stump and attending the fire to make sure it doesn’t spread to the rest of the neighborhood, which is always a bonus. Adding logs to help the stump burn is a common practice in most other ways of burning.

Barrel Burning

Use a fire barrel to get rid of a tree stump safely and easily.

Simply follow these steps:

  • Invest in a 55-gallon drum
  • It’s time to make a hole at the bottom.
  • Make a top-side hole in the side.
  • Place it on the stump with its back to the camera.
  • A large amount of firewood should be placed in the barrel.
  • Let it go up in flames.

Keeping an eye on it is a good idea, but the burn barrel should keep things under control. Depending on the size of your stump, you should have a gorgeous black crater in its place rather than a stump after a few days of adding wood to the barrel.

You may even use a leaf blower to expedite the process. You may speed up the burning process by simply directing the leaf blower to push air onto the embers from the bottom.


Charcoal burns hotter than wood, making it an excellent fuel for a stump fire.

  • Grab a few briquettes from the store.
  • Put a bag on the stump and see what happens.
  • You can do this by dousing them with lighter fluid and setting them on fire.
  • Do some dutch oven cooking while you’re at it, and keep adding briquettes as needed.

I recently cooked some delicious tinfoil-wrapped dutch oven meals. A peach cobbler would also be a suitable substitute. Charcoal burns slowly, so you won’t worry about large flames.

Candles from Sweden

My inspiration for this concept came from a buddy who inquired about my availability of a single log.

Chuckling, I inquired what he planned to do with a single log. To stay warm while ice fishing, he instructed me to use a log that had been chopped into two halves by making crisscross cuts in it.

He mentioned that sitting on the ice for hours is exhausting. A tree stump can be used in the same way. If you have 24 to 48 hours to burn, this is a fun way to remove a tree stump. Haha, I didn’t mean to offend anyone.

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The Rocket Stove

Instead of creating crisscross incisions, this method is similar to the Swedish candle method.

  • In the middle of the stump, drill a small hole.
  • As feasible as close to the ground, drill four holes that connect on all four sides.
  • Kerosene can be poured into the top hole.
  • The stump should be illuminated.

Using the bottom holes, the fire will draw in air and begin to burn the stump from the inside out. Unfortunately, I was unable to use this. Some holes may have been drilled incorrectly, or perhaps my stump was too moist.

Even with my blow torch, I couldn’t get it to move. Maybe it can, but I couldn’t get into it. I had to put out the fire to put the kids to bed, so I just piled logs on top of the stump to keep it going.

One thing to keep in mind is that a 1-inch auger drill bit with a foot length is necessary. They were not cheap. In addition, you’ll need a power drill to do this. A drill powered by a battery or even a regular plug-in drill will struggle to complete the task.

Digging a hole down about a foot on one side seems the most effective method. Drill a hole in the center of the top hole and link it to the lower hole. Then, bury a metal pipe that links to the lowest hole in the ground.

After starting the fire, use the shop vac or leaf blower to blow out the pipe. This will speed up the process and help you burn the stump completely. A 12-inch crater and some ash will be all that’s left when you’re finished.

4 Ways To Rot…Or Not Rot A Stump

This is the worst approach I’ve ever seen to remove a tree stump. That’s how long it may take…forever.. and ever.. and ever.

If it isn’t obvious, I am strongly opposed to using rotting stumps as a fuel source because it is ineffective. Decomposing a stump is not accelerated by any of the methods I have tested, including salt, stump remover, and stump-out. Despite this, I did come across a method that could work during my investigation. It’s going to take some time.

The YouTube videos teaching people how to rot their stumps with salt make me insane. I’m the only one that shows you what happened a few years later in these films. There isn’t a thing… The salt didn’t kill even the stump.

Rotting a Tree Stump the Right Way

Nature rots things, so look to her for inspiration. Fungi are at the center of this story. As the wood decomposes, fungi turn it into nutrients that subsequent plants and trees can use.

Slowing down the process by sprinkling salt and using stump remover and stump out will only kill fungus. Stumps that have been covered in compost for a few years are the greatest method for decaying them. Then you can use an ax to remove the rest of the stump.

Spectricide’s Stump Destroyer

Spectricide’s Stump Remover, on the other hand, yields far superior sugar rocket fuel. Because it is made entirely of potassium nitrate, mixing it with sugar to build homemade rockets is a cinch. My kids and I had a good time playing with hot wheels.

The instructions say to drill ten-inch-deep holes all over the stump and then fill them with stump remover, which you’re meant to do after a few months of letting it sit, it instructs you to burn it. Do nothing and then dispose of it.

Stump Out

It’s like stump remover, except without the rockets. It follows the same instructions and achieves the same outcomes. It’s a waste of money to spend $10 on this.

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In addition to salt and Epsom salt,

There are many videos on YouTube touting this method as the quickest and easiest way to remove a tree stump.The rotting process will not be accelerated using Epsom salt or salt alone. Even though it speeds up the drying process, it isn’t worth the money or effort.

If you have any more suggestions for removing a tree stump, please leave a comment on one of my YouTube videos, and I will add it to this list. Good luck removing the tree stump from your property.

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