Sick or damaged trees can be a safety issue

Published On: Aug 19 2012 10:08:22 AM EDT

Each year, thousands of trees in the U.S. are damaged by storms, wind, lightning and ice, causing millions of dollars in property damage.

Proper tree care is an investment that can lead to substantial returns. Well-cared-for trees are attractive and can add up to 15 percent of value to your property.

Angie's List asked highly rated tree service companies about how to know when it’s time to remove a tree.

Some signs that homeowners should look for include dead wood of either multiple branches or the trunk, poor leaf development in the crown, and discoloration and separation of the bark on the main stem. When a large branch breaks off the main tree and gets lodged within the other branches or if a significant crack is found, the tree should be removed.

Causes:

The best methods for removing trees are those used by trained arborists.

“While removing a tree might seem like a very simple job it’s important to hire the right professional to take care of it. You want to make sure that it’s taken out of your yard properly so you don’t cause any damage and you want to make sure the workers that are doing it are safe as well so they know exactly how to tackle a project because if the tree is already dead they potentially can’t climb the tree to remove limbs also you want to make sure they have the proper insurance because the last thing you want is someone getting hurt on your property or when those limbs are dropped it causes any damage to your property,” said Angie Hicks, founder of Angie's List.

Costs for removal:

Angie’s List Tips: Hiring a tree service