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Industrial Strength Raid and Can you take a look at this too while you're here???

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by AceSprinkleRx, Aug 29, 2005.

  1. AceSprinkleRx

    AceSprinkleRx LawnSite Member
    from Wyoming
    Posts: 95

    Got my indoctrination into the brotherhood I think.

    Call comes in to replace a head which isn't working and the grass is dead and brown along the driveway. I get there and bleed Z1 to see what I got. I hear gurgling and sputtering and finally I see an old RB brass head try to lift. Most are under pines/spruces which have grown over the years and shaded out the turf underneath and they are buried and plugged. Only spitting water up like a leaking lateral.

    One is along the driveway and I only find it by looking at the corner between the driveway and sidewalk where a head 'should' be. Finally I see moisture seeping up. Dig it up and replace with a RB 1800Q.

    HO calls after I leave a bill and recommend he does something with the other brass heads. I go back...

    End up capping 5 brass heads off and he points out another head he wants replaced which is buried under a nasty old snarly bush. I tell him he needs to get his kid (teenager) out here and dig the bush out over the weekend and I'll drop another 1800 there. Fine he says, now can you take a look at this???

    A Mini-paw has a busted hood and the rotor is cracked off. I tell him I'll come back on Monday to take care of the Mini and the 1800Q.

    So I get there today and the bush is gone,and I start to dig up the old head. All of a sudden there are pissed off ants EVERYWHERE!!!! Running up my arm, swarming up my legs, and a few get into my shorts! :blob4:

    Doesn't take me long to swap out heads! LMAO!

    After I get the ants out of my shorts by hopping up and down and dragging my butt across the concrete drive, I go take care of the Mini. First I ran the head to see how it operated and how the other heads sprayed. Then I began to dig it up and as I dig and reached underneath the head out, I feel what seems like a beaver den entrance! I could place my hole fist into this cavity.

    When I replaced the rotor and went to backfill the hole and replace the sod I cut out, I ended up being a couple of inches below grade due to the dirt I pulled out going back into the void I found. What do you guys do in a case like this? I pulled some driveway rock over to dump in and did manage to get it back close to grade, but it will settle downwards quickly. Do you tell the HO to bring some dirt in or do you follow up with a bucket of fill and bring the head back up a week or so later?

    I learned early on to keep some DEET to battle mosquitoes and today I learned about pissed off ants. But I did bill out a couple hunnies so I'm heading to pick up some Industriual Strength Raid to add to my truck arsenal. (Anyone carry a shotgun for Pit Bulls???)

    The other thing I'm finding out is figuring on spending twice as long somewhere after the HO starts with the "While you're here...." routine and his neighbor wants to come over with his "Hey as long as your next door can you take a look at this...???" line.

  2. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    I typically ask the homeowner if they have an area I can get some dirt from, otherwise they get a low spot.


    Just be glad you didn't find these ants :)

    I've had my run ins with ants, bee's, spiders etc... Its part of the trade.
  3. Instant Rain

    Instant Rain LawnSite Member
    Posts: 54

    If you keep a couple bags of gravel on your truck for setting valve boxes you could also use that gravel to back fill areas that have been washed out. Gravel won't settle as much when you back fill with it either, so you can be sure that the grade will be the same after you leave. I keep ant spray, wasp spay, and spider spray on my truck. Black Widows like to hide in valve boxes around here in North Texas.
  4. jerryrwm

    jerryrwm LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,274

    Not to mention the occasional scorpion in the valve box. That'll make you think twice about jamming your hands down into a 6" valve box without looking. (It hurts for days!)

    Or the old valve box full of water and two or three toads are in there. That'll make your sphincter pucker also when one of them bumps your fingers!!
  5. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,649

    The toads you're supposed to lick. :eek:
  6. bicmudpuppy

    bicmudpuppy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,781

    Be ever so thankful they were NOT fire ants. I KNEW there had to be a good reason for moving north !!

    I hit a lawn for winterization about 8 years ago that was FULL of snakes. Just the everyday garden variety, but........... I've found rattle snakes in boxes before, and all variety of spiders, etc. It was COLD, I fished a snake out of the first box w/ my valve key and instant slow motion from cold snake, but he tried to go back into the same box. I'm blowing this system w/ manual bleeders because controller access isn't going to happen soon enough. I start putting these snakes in a 5 gallon bucket........ended up with around 20 of them before I was through. Covered the bucket with an old seed sack and hauled it off with me. I get to the shop and it is way dark thirty. My wife and kids are waiting for me because we were down to one vehicle at this time. My son who would have been 4 comes walking up. "Hey buddy, could you get me my pliers out of that bucket over there......no, that bucket.." He screams like a girl, spills the bucket and the area infront of the shop is covered with pissed off snakes who don't want to be cold anymore.
    Kid still remembers that bucket like it was yesterday............
  7. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    Them snakes be good eatin.

    Why exactly were you keeping them?
  8. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,649

    He wants the kid to grow up and become a doctor, and take him away from all this<br><img src=http://images.google.com/images?q=tbn:Lv9nEMr57ykJ:www.woodmed.com/cadeuses.jpg>
  9. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,156

    Ive found many black widows, garter snakes, a few toads, mice, dead mice, hornets nests, lots of slugs. But no rattlesnakes yet. Heard of it here though.
  10. bicmudpuppy

    bicmudpuppy LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,781

    How many times have I asked myself that question?? It just didn't seem right to turn them back loose. This house was on the green belt, but right in town. Upscale small house. Very nice couple, but I know she is terrified of snakes and mice (ever notice you rarely have both?). I think the thing I find and hate worst of all in boxes are spiders. I don't see a lot of dangerous spiders and most of the bad ones are recluse. I am fairly tolerant of the recluse bites, but they fester and take forever to heal. When I was in DFW, a fire ant attack (more than say 10 bites) would make me really sick. I don't miss them critters at ALL.

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