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Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by SONSCAPES, Jan 26, 2006.


    SONSCAPES LawnSite Member
    Posts: 93

    I Am New To Irrigation. The Situation Is I Have Bidded On Three Irrig. Jobs In The Past Few Months I Use 2 Different Distributers For Products So I sent Them Some Measurements To Help Get A Head Count And To Get A Price Together. All 3 Times It Took Them About Three Weeks To Get It Done And All 3 Times I Did Not Get The Jobs. I Have Taken A Two Day Design Seminar And I Have Tried To Get A Guy From The Distributer To Come Out And Show Me How To Get A Material List Myself And Learn How To Design A System Myself. He Has Called With An Excuse Every Time Not To Meet. My ? Is What Can I Do To Learn So I Don't Have To Rely On These Guys and eliminate turning in these late bids. also what are some pricing methods for irrigation. Thanks In Advance!
  2. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,496

    There really is no quick and easy answer. There are designers out there that have no trench time and then there are some of us working stiffs that have no design/education time yet think they can still design. Personally I believe it takes a balance of both trench time and design/education time. Personally, I had a lot of trench time already and then took a local design class through a community college that was taught by one of the best in the area. I also took a drafting class to aid in drawings before we switched a few years ago to CAD. Trench time will benefit as to how to put the system together the best way and education time will allow you to better understand how the hydraulics of moving water works. This is not an instant gratification thing though. It takes time.
  3. Broker

    Broker LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 382

    If you want to eye something

    Plumbing Material
    Fittings (avg. 40% of pipe cost)
    any rental fees
    money to cover warranty
    money to cover overhead
    desired profit

    Why don't you just sit down and design a couple of systems that would be similar to the type that you are bidding on to come up with a price range for a certain size system in whatever area.

    I usually take a half a day a year to figure out best,average and worst case jobs for a 5,6,7,8,9,10,11 & 12 zone system. Then average the prices per a zone for when I am bidding I figure worse case if I get a bad vibe from the owner or if there are strict codes or other factors such as slopes that might effect the installation. If I have a basic flat yard with good pressure that I might price on the best case price.

    just my 2 cents.
  4. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    Here is a good starting point:


    How are you even submitting bids without knowing irrigation, You wouldn't even be able to ballpark it accurately.
  5. ShepDog

    ShepDog LawnSite Member
    Posts: 18

    I work on a price/linear foot basis. This price incorporates fittings, swing pipe, etc. Valves, heads, nozzles, wire, etc. are added. Backflow should be subd out, provide the backflow to the plumber. Remember, time is more expensive than material. Walk the site, look for obstacles, hang ups etc. And Dirty, is it just me or is that Guy Jess at irrr.tutorials a little full of himself?
  6. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    He is full of himself, and I disagree with him on a few things, but overall its a good stating point for someone who doesn't know anything...A lot better than a Home Depot book.
  7. LandscapePro

    LandscapePro LawnSite Member
    Posts: 138


    I'd suggest you get a Hunter Irrigation System Design Manual and make sure to get the "Instructor's" version.

    I make sure mine's handy before I get out the paper and pen to this day.

    I think I gave 60 bucks for it.

    La. Landscape Contractor #2576

    SONSCAPES LawnSite Member
    Posts: 93

    yeah i know i am green with irrigation. i have a couple guys in my area i keep in touch with so i have a ballpark avg. to charge but not very accurate i guess. i think i should just help one of these guys out to get some install experience. i got to start some where. thanks for all the help guys
  9. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,496

    You're going about it the right way. After you gain some experience installing systems you'll have a little better idea as to how everything relates. Then if you decide to go into the design aspect things will transition a lot better. Good luck. :waving:
  10. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,563

    keep in mind that when you get your distributer to design the system.... it usually gets WAT OVERDONE... remember they are trying to sell materials....

    i had JD do a few residentials for me a while back and almost had a cow when i saw the design and price for materials....

    way high...

    i only use them for large projects where there is a larger liability on the design..

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