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The original item was published from 3/15/2021 10:52:34 AM to 6/16/2021 12:00:05 AM.

News Flash

Neighborhood Enhancement

Posted on: March 15, 2021

[ARCHIVED] City Launches Home Improvement Equipment Lending Program


The City of San Marcos Neighborhood Enhancement Department is launching the Home Equipment Lending Program (HELP) to provide residents the opportunity to check out items to complete basic outdoor home improvement projects. Through the program, City residents 18 years of age or older can check out and use home improvement equipment including a tree trimming kit, fence staining kit, and curb painting kit. 

What’s Included:
There is one tree trimming kit available for use. It includes a JawSaw, extension pole, extension cord, and safety equipment. There is also one fence staining kit available, which includes a portable electric pressure washer for prepping the fence, as well as an Airless Paint Sprayer with spray tip extension, extension cord, and safety equipment. Stain is not included. Multiple curb painting kits are available for use, which have everything needed to paint street addresses on the curb including a numbers-only stencil kit and spray paint. 

All of the kits are available to city residents for free on a limited, as available basis and are not for commercial use. Residents will be required to complete a waiver prior to picking up equipment. For more information about the program or to reserve the equipment, visit The website also includes instructional videos about how to use the equipment.

Tree Trimming Tips:

  • Avoid wounding or pruning oak trees between February 1 and June 30 to prevent the spread of the oak wilt disease. 
  • Always immediately paint the cuts or wounds on oaks. 
  • Prune from the ground with proper tools and safety equipment.
  • Do not prune near powerlines.
  • Avoid making flush cuts or stub cuts on trees. Cut just outside the branch collar, or the swollen area at the base of the limb. 

Following tree trimming, residents have several options to dispose of the branches:

  • Brush Drop Off: second Saturday of every month, 750 River Road (behind the Animal Shelter), 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • Green Waste Cart: any branch smaller than 5 inches in diameter can go into the green waste cart. Use paper yard bags if the cart is full. Up to 12 bags may be placed out with the green waste cart.
  • Bulk Pick Up: branches should be cut into 4-foot lengths and combined into a bundle weighing no more than 35 pounds.

Fence Staining Tips:
While prepping a fence prior to staining, take care to keep paint chips or excessive dirt from going down storm drains. Do not rinse material with stain on to the ground or into storm drains. Extra wash out from oil-based stains or paint should be taken to the Household Hazardous Waste Drop Off Facility, 634 E Hopkins, on Tuesdays and Fridays from 12 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Unwanted wood stain should also be taken to the facility. 

For more information about the rental program, email For media inquiries, contact



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