Taking A Closer Look At Safety Features Necessary When Buying A Used Wood Chipper

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Wood chippers may be a necessary piece of equipment if you are in the tree trimming or removal business, but they can also be rather dangerous to operate without the appropriate safety features. In fact, OSHA reported that between 1996 and 2005, at least 39 people were killed by wood chippers on the job. If you are like a lot of commercial business owners, you will look for used equipment when you can to save on costs, and finding used wood chippers for sale is a good way to save a lot of money. However, before you purchase a used piece of equipment, you should make sure that the wood chipper you are considering still has its safety features in tact and functional.

Feed Control and Feed Stop Bars

The food control or feed stop bar feature is implemented onto a wood chopper to stop the feed rollers inside of the chipper with just a simple push. This is crucial to have available if something gets caught in the feed rollers, such as a piece of clothing. The feed control bars can be located at various points on a chipper, but in most cases, the bar will be either along the top of the feeder entrance or at the base where it can be stepped on with your feet if your hands or arms get caught.

Most models of wood chippers have this bar in place, but some used models may have the bar removed, either due to damage or because previous owners wanted the bar out of the way. While you are shopping for a used wood chipper, make sure that the feed control or stop bar is still in place. If it is not, you should have the necessary parts replaced before you try to use it.

Feeder Entrance Safety Features

While all wood chippers must be equipped with mandatory kill devices, such as feeder stop or control bars or a panic rope, there are other safety features that some models are equipped with that can be incredibly useful to have around. Most of these safety features revolve around putting distance between the person pushing wood into the feed rollers and the rollers. For example, curtain flaps over the rollers prevent hanging jewelry or clothing from coming in close enough contact with the internal rollers. A few other safety features you should be looking for include:

  • Feeder tray extensions
  • Panic ropes inside of the feeder canal
  • Push tools used for feeding the chipper

Even though wood chippers can be somewhat dangerous to operate, with the appropriate safety features and mindful use, they are an efficient piece of equipment in the tree business. Make sure, while you shop for a wood chipper, you take the time to look for the most effective safety features that should be present.

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