Removing trees from around your home can be a challenging task and, depending on the size of the tree, may require professional attention for safe and effective removal. Small trees that do not exceed a height of 16 or 17 feet can usually be removed without the help of a professional arborist, but still require some specific equipment and some special care and attention.
Inspect the tree and the surrounding area. Ensure that the tree trunk is not rotted, as this could affect way the tree falls during cutting. Make sure there are no power lines, fences or other structures that could be damaged when the tree falls. If there are obstacles for you to try and avoid while cutting, contact a professional arborist to safely remove the tree.
Dress yourself with protective gear, such as a hard hat and protective eye wear.
Remove as many branches from the tree as possible using a chain saw. Cut the branches off level with the tree trunk.
Cut the tree down by creating a notch in the tree trunk about 12 inches up from the ground, using a chain saw. Cut a V-shaped chunk out of the tree trunk on the side you wish the tree to fall. The notch should reach almost halfway into the tree center.
Use a chopping axe to chop into the notch. Stand beside the tree while cutting into the notch, so the tree will fall in front of you to either your left or right, depending where you are standing.
Using a spade shovel, dig a trench around the tree stump to reveal the tree roots.
Use a chopping axe to cut all visible roots loose from the tree stump.
Insert a landscaping bar underneath the stump and pry upwards to remove the tree from its hole.
Discard the tree stump and all other parts into a designated dumping location.