Tree Removal Techniques

Homeowners plant trees to improve the aesthetics of their property. Trees not only blossom beautiful, colourful flowers and foliage but they also help create shade and improve the air. Moreover, adding hedge trees can improve the boundary and security of your property. 

But there are times when a tree becomes a safety hazard. If heavy storms or rains have weakened a tree and it’s prone to fall, it’s best to call a tree removalist at the earliest. A professional will carefully and safely remove the tree whilst avoiding damage and injuries to people and properties. 

Three distinct types of processes are used for tree removal: clear-felling, sectional felling and controlled directional feeling. The tree removal technique we use completely depends on the situation. 

Tree Removal Basics

The tree removal specialist will begin by conducting a visual assessment of the tree. This helps identify any potential hazards that could result in injury. He will also identify the condition of the tree, its structural integrity, wind loading and location. 

Tree Removal Techniques

This evaluation forms the groundwork for any risk assessment of a site and helps identify the safest route to cut down the tree. 

The operator will use a scarf and back cut method.  

Clear Felling

Clear felling is a technique that’s used to remove whole trees or trunks provided there are at least two tree lengths of space available in all directions from the tree’s base. 

However, clear-felling is not a very commonly used technique in urban environments given the space constraints. 

Here are the steps the tree removal specialist takes for clear-felling: 

  1. Assess the tree to check its condition. Identify hazards if any and the presence of conditions/defects that could affect the direction of the fall, such as uneven growth, intergrowth or vines with other trees, weight distribution and shape of the crown and branches. 
  2. Make sure there are no overhead electric lines or structures within the clear zone (two tree lengths) or underground services that may be damaged when the tree hits the ground.
  3. Maintain a distance of at least two tree lengths from the base of the tree.
  4. Identify at least two escape routes 
  5. Use a chainsaw to safely fell the tree

Controlled Directional Felling

This tree removal process is used where the space available is less than two tree lengths. Cables or ropes are attached to the target tree and cuts are made. The line is then tensioned to bring down the tree. This can be done either using a mobile plant or using a winch and anchor point. Another option is to use a mechanical plant to push the tree in the target location. 

This technique is ideal when the tree is likely to fall in the direction of an electric line, another structure or can result in an unsafe situation such as hung trees. The controlled directional felling technique is generally used in urban spaces where the presence of adjacent buildings or services makes it difficult to use the clear-felling method. 

Tree Removal Techniques

Here are some of the control measures that we take when using this technique for tree removal: 

  • The work is carried out by operators who are fully trained and have years of experience in the task. 
  • Create exclusion zones around the tree being felled. 
  • Systems such as mobile phones or two-way radios are used to establish communication between the team members
  • Use machinery to pull and push trees as necessary

Sectional Felling 

As part of this tree removal technique, a tree removalist works at height using an elevated work platform (EWP) to cut the tree gradually into several sections, which are then lowered in a controlled manner. 

As this process involves the use of an EWP, the team considers several things when choosing this technique including:

  • Is it safer to remove/trim the tree? 
  • Are there any underground services present such as gas, water, electricity or telephone that might affect the process of setting up an EWP?
  • Can the EWP reach the desired height safely? 
  • Are there any structures, obstacles or trees that pose a safety hazard when using an EWP?
  • Are there any overhead electric lines that may hinder the worker from working? 
  • Should the removalist lean outside the EWP’s structure to carry out his work? 
  • Will it be difficult to remove or cut the branch, limb or section of the tree due to the use of the EWP? 


These are the three important tree removal techniques used by professional tree removalists. For more information or for a free quotes in the Brisbane area call Matt on 0476 150 080 or visit