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Should Dead Trees be Cut Down?

A tree, which many people may associate with their childhood, becomes a massive safety risk once it becomes dead. However, it is sometimes hard to determine whether the tree is dead or just dormant. Deciding if a tree needs to be removed is usually based on whether if it is dead or not.

How to tell if a tree is dead and needs to be removed

It is often advised to always remove a dead tree due to the various dangers it can impose. A dead tree does not need to be removed if it is in a remote area. It may also be possible that the tree may look dead but is just dormant.

There are many ways to determine if a tree is dead and not dormant. The simplest and most effective way is to perform a scratch test. Using a sharp object, you can cut a branch of the tree and look at it. If it is green and moist inside, this is a clear indicator that the tree is healthy and alive. Perform this on various points of the tree to ensure that the tree is not dead.

You can also tell visually whether a tree is dead or not. Fungus growing on the tree is a clear sign that the tree may be rotten on the inside. Also, by looking at the log of the tree itself, if it is bare and has no bark, this is another indicator that the tree may be dead. If the tree itself is slanted or leaning in one direction, this may indicate that the roots have become rotten and are unable to hold the tree up anymore. If you are currently in summer or spring and the tree does not grow any leaves, this is another indicator that it is dead.

How much does it cost to remove a dead tree?

The cost of removing a dead tree varies depending on its size, location, and difficulty. This price can range from $350 to $10,000 per tree. Dead trees also impose risks during removal to the arborists, which may lead to more incurred costs.

Fortunately, however, some insurance companies cover the costs for tree removal. So you should contact your insurance provider and determine whether this is a service that they offer.


A dead tree should always be cut down if it resides in a residential area as it could lead to severe injuries to people and potentially damage the environment and structures around it. The removal of a dead tree is a dangerous endeavour and should always be left to a professional. If you find your trees have died or are concerned whether or not they will fall, contact an arborist immediately.

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