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aeration with no sprinkler breaks

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by qghs, May 18, 2005.

  1. qghs

    qghs LawnSite Member
    Posts: 21

    Do you tell the customer to flag their sprinklers, or do you flag them yourself, or do you just estimate where they are and miss them?
  2. ncmark

    ncmark LawnSite Member
    Posts: 16

    I always call my cust. ahead and tell them to mark their sprinklers. If they aren't marked I leave a note and move on to the next one. Marking sprinklers is a pain in the *ss. It takes extra time and you get wet.
  3. theturfsurfer

    theturfsurfer LawnSite Member
    from mtka,MN
    Posts: 102

    I give my customers the option to flag their heads. If they decide not to flag I usually stay away from the edges. Most of the lawns I aerate I also mow so I am familiar with where the heads and boxes are.
  4. General Grounds

    General Grounds LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 902

    :blob3: i always supply cust. with a bundle of flags, they dont want to flag not my problem. they know that when they sign up.

    GREENITUP LawnSite Member
    Posts: 245

    We always make the customer flag them (we do however supply the flags to them ahead of time). If you hit one that isn't marked - I feel like it is the customers responsibility - but things happen. Work with the customer to schedule your aeration(s) when the time is right and they will have time to do the regular prep work (marking sprinklers, mowing if necessary, ...). Good luck.
  6. dfor

    dfor LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 821

    I once did an aeration for a customer that marked the heads. Everything went fine, so I thought. I later heard from the neighbor that the tines poked about 6 holes in the lines throughout the lawn. The system was obviously installed too shallow. She didn't hold me accountable, knew it wasn't my fault. Some other customers might not be so understanding, and try and make us pay.
  7. mastercare

    mastercare LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 289

    I've always marked the heads myself when I show up. However, this year I offered a couple customers to mark their own, and a few took me up on it. I realized what a huge time killer it really is, when I saved time on the pre-marked lawns.
    So, next year, I'm going to raise my prices.....and then discount it back to normal for customers who are willing to mark their own sprinklers. I haven't hit a sprinkler in several years.....its more of a time concern than liability for me.

    Has anyone else tried this pricing method to get your customers to "do the flagging?"
  8. tocs93

    tocs93 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 37

    I don't have customers mark heads and have never broken a head using a small ryan walk behind aerator.
  9. sildoc

    sildoc LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,925

    Charge extra to mark. If not marked will fix at cost. My cost..... I will generally hit 1-2 heads a year aerating. Not bad out of 90-120 lawns. I find that aerating is by far my best money maker and when I have 300-500 lawns I will give up the mowing business and just do aerating. Right now I am about 50-50 income wise aerating to mowing and I can do those 90-120 lawns in less than a month where the mowing is about 9 months out of the year.
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I always have the customers mark heads but I also keep a pack of flags in the truck for them to use, should they not have any. When I'm done, whether they used my flags OR theirs, I go all around the yard and pick up the flags so:
    - If they're mine, I get them back.
    - If they're theirs, I lay them by their house and saves them the hassle.
    - But, as I pick them up, I get to see if I missed any spots :)

    Packs of flags are like 7 or 8 bucks per 100 at Home Depot, I bought a pack 2-3 years ago, still got plenty left. They're also handy to have in order to mark trouble spots when mowing.
    Even with the heads marked, I've hit a few over the years with my big TA-26 Classen and none have ever broken. Now if it DID break, I'd pay for them to call their sprinkler-guy or co. and I'd pay the 50-80 bucks.

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