Tear off - dumpster or haul yourself?

Trying to decide between a dumpster or hauling the stuff to the dump ourselves, but a couple of things are interfering with the decision process:

  1. I don’t know what kind of volume a 33 square roof with wood shakes (2 layers on the one side of the roof) will create, and therefore don’t really know what size dumpster to order.

It looks like a lot of material when you’re up on the roof, and so I guesstimated a 30 yard one to be on the safe side, but it’s a little pricey at a hair over $500 (though that does include 8 tons of material).

  1. If we go with a truck, it’ll be a larger U-haul (26’ most likely, which coincidentally is about the same size as a 30 yard dumpster) that we rent for a couple of days. So we have to figure $80 rental on the truck ($40 day), plus $1 a mile (dump is 15 miles away, so 30 R/T), plus dump fees of around $53 a ton.

So, again, I kind of need to know what kind of volume a roof like that will create, and also need to know if wood shakes are/were generally treated in any way that might stop us from dumping it at the regular dump.

Can anyone provide any guidance when it comes to these two scenarios?

If those are your only two choices, I would rent the dumpster if there is a good spot for them to place it near enough to the house to be able to just throw the debris down into it. It may take longer than you think to do this job and there won’t be any time constraints involved with the dumpster and you won’t have to go to a stinky landfill and hand unload. If it has rained recently, the landfill will also be muddy and extra nasty. With a U-haul truck you would have to throw the debris on the ground and then in the back of the truck. Cedar shakes take up a LOT of room. Get the big one.

Depends on the job; we use both.

i uses two smaller bins.
sometime we cant even throw the shakes into the bin from roof.

if we throw onto ground on tarps we use small bins. ugly job but if we have to throw onto ground with a small bin we can toss all the garbage at head level. the large bins are atleast 8feet high. smaller bins are 5 or six feet.

one shake job around 20square takes one large bin. or two small bins.
you may need two big bins.

or three small bins.

mind you i have a bin guy and own my own bins. i rent them out to other roofers. and my bin guy owns his own trucks so it differs.

i would go with three small bins and iff possible close to the house. thats if it makes sense money wise. time is money.

I have had this discussion and even argument many many times. For me in my area the math doesn’t add up to use anything besides a roll off dumpster provided by a vendor. The costs, for me, will be significantly less using a 3rd party.

I know some of you are reading this thinking I am absolutely insane. Let’s explore that.

I would pay the same rate per ton using a dumpster company vs a dumpster. An actual dump is too far to travel. Transfer stations in my area are all managed by large corporations who have interests in roll off dumpsters. They make sure it’s not profitable.

My preferred dumpster company in the area charged me flat rate per yard, not per ton. Only thing is, if it was over and they got a ticket, I would have to pay the ticket. This made it significantly more cost effective when I could squeeze 20 yards into a 15 yard dumpster (think about a tear and gravel tear off).

Workers comp classification for roofers in Illinois is 42%. You can get it down with an experience modifier, but I have never met anyone with less than 35% and those companies have been in business decades. Even at 35% is gigantic. Lowest I ever got in my 10 years in business was 40%, and that reset to 42% when I changed insurance companies. If I pay a driver 20 an hour I figure it’s actually costing me about 40 an hour with all burdens… and that doesn’t even include vehicular overhead either. $40 an hour x 2 hours round trip, it just doesn’t make sense.

Many guys tell me “I’ll drive it myself on my way home and dump the garbage myself to avoid paying someone to do it.” Well you are working, and if you like working for free perhaps you should consider a career in charity or non profit work, because that’s what you are doing. Have you ever considered all those lost wages you are giving up by “not paying someone else to do it”?

The company I am working for now is paying their subs on average $200 per house for waste fees. They pay the same for 1 layer as they do for 2 layers. The subs are totally clueless on how to run a business, hence why they are subs. They are totally taking advantage of the ignorance of the sub contractor and I really don’t like this behavior.

In short, if you are considering buying a dump truck, I encourage you to have your accountant do a cost benefit analysis and forecast your costs both using dump trucks and roll off dumpsters. Then make a decision.

I’m with Grumpy. I can rent a roll off dumpster here for $250 including the cost of dumping it that will hold 50 sq. The landfill charges $3 per ton for roofing. So that would be $150 for dump fees, maybe $25 in gas plus maybe $50 for the driver. $225 without counting any cost for maintenance or repair on trucks and trailers. Hauling a lot of weight frequently is extremely rough on any vehicle. Then there are the flat tires, etc.

I don’t understand the big debate, you use the correct tool for the job as with all things.

We evaluate each job individually. If we can get a dumpster in the driveway and it’s ok with the customer and the job is of a size to make a dumpster
worthwhile then that’s what we use. If you can’t get a dumpster in the driveway, the customer doesn’t want one, it’s an ultra high end job with a brand new driveway, etc. then we use the dump truck and charge appropriate dumping fees. We use what’s needed, as needed and all related costs are included in the price of the job so I don’t see why anyone would skimp to save a few bucks as the customer pays, not you. Anything else and you’re doing it wrong imo. The exception being a mom & pop type company where you can’t afford to buy a dump truck and therefore don’t have that option.

[quote=“Tar Monkey”]I don’t understand the big debate, you use the correct tool for the job as with all things.

We evaluate each job individually. If we can get a dumpster in the driveway and it’s ok with the customer and the job is of a size to make a dumpster
worthwhile then that’s what we use. If you can’t get a dumpster in the driveway, the customer doesn’t want one, it’s an ultra high end job with a brand new driveway, etc. then we use the dump truck and charge appropriate dumping fees. We use what’s needed, as needed and all related costs are included in the price of the job so I don’t see why anyone would skimp to save a few bucks as the customer pays, not you. Anything else and you’re doing it wrong imo. The exception being a mom & pop type company where you can’t afford to buy a dump truck and therefore don’t have that option.[/quote]

I agree with what you are saying in general theory. The customer pays for all costs associated with completing a project, period.

So you would buy a dump truck and let is sit at your shop 3 days out of the week because the customer isn’t willing to pay the extra $100-200 in dump fees per load? Or would you prefer to take advantage of the fact that you have a dump truck, and rather that let it sit idle in your driveway rusting away, you would rather use it?

I don’t know of any company that has a dump truck and chooses not to use it. Maybe I don’t know enough people?

We have a dump truck. We use it if and when needed. How are dump fees “extra” with a dump truck? Both the carting company and the local dump charge by weight… Hell, if you are close to a asphalt recycle place you can “dump” for free.

I think its all about what is right for your business. We use dump trailers but not because we make money off of the disposal fees but because we have the conveniance of moving it when and where we want it. A lot of the jobs we do we benefit from moving the trailer around the yard taking the debris from the roof to the trailer. This saves us a lot of labor. The Landfill in my area is 15 minutes from my shop.