your aerator punctured my sprinkler lines!

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by ant, Sep 28, 2005.

  1. ant

    ant LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,444

    and i not paying you till you fix my lines!


    i am sorry mr. x but i cant be responsible for systems that are not installed properly.

    before we aerated i gave you instructions and it stated that we were not responsible for damaged lines.

    he is pissed and said he will contact me..

    what would do?
     
  2. Hello Ant,

    The fun never ends, doesn't it.

    Are you convinced that the sprinkler system damage was caused by the aeration?

    Are you convinced that the sprinkler system was installed incorrectly (to shallow)?

    Is the damage to a line or a sprinkler head?

    Is this client an ongoing service client or one app wonder?
     
  3. Tscape

    Tscape LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,370

    That is right in my contract, "not responsible for damage to underground utilities unless they are marked". I would point out that clause and say, "guide yourself accordingly, Mr. x, but I do intend to be paid for the service". Maybe it sounds harsh or unfriendly, but isn't the reason we put these clauses into contracts so people will know what they are responsible for? I mean if he has to call Miss Dig or mark his irrigation for an aeration that is his responsibility. You have to draw him a picture?
     
  4. GreenUtah

    GreenUtah LawnSite Senior Member
    from SLC, UT
    Posts: 866

    unless you are using a hydraulic deep tined machine, any LINE that you hit is improperly installed(depth). Local codes can easily back that up if push comes to shove. heads are another matter, we always flagged what we could and asked customers to mark out anything particularly hidden, placing the burden back on them.
     
  5. Mscotrid

    Mscotrid LawnSite Bronze Member
    from USA
    Posts: 1,456

    In my world customers are responsible to see that their sprinkler heads are marked. Items that are underground fall into the not my fault category. With that being said I would have to take into consideration the value of the customer. Unfortunately in the past when I tried to help someone out with a repair not caused by myself or employee the customer always cancel before I can recoup my cost. I now use the following formula to help in my decision making

    Customer takes 6 treatment @ $40.50 per app. Combined with annual aeration say another 70-90 bucks. Weigh your actual net profit against the perceived claim and decide how long that customer must stay with you to reclaim your loss. Thats provided they are not service call hounds which if they call for more than two questionable service calls per season they qualify to be canceled. Service calls are not free, so don't advertise free service calls.
     
  6. ProLawns

    ProLawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 476

    I hope that none of my customers would get that upset over something so simple to fix. It sounds like you may not have a very good relationship with this customer already. Nevertheless I would fix it for free, i've done it before. Then tell him next year to get someone else to aerate since his lines aren't burried deep enough and you don't want the same thing happening again.
     
  7. Green Dreams

    Green Dreams LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Posts: 593

    If it's a head...Fix it. All they know is "now it's broke." Make friends with a sprinkler guy. Its not worth the hassle and goodwill you will lose.
     
  8. BravesFan

    BravesFan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 233

    We hit a main line to the irrigation system last week. The thing opened up out of the ground like a geyser at Yellowstone.

    The repair took us about 15 minutes. I keep various size couplers, primer, and glue on hand....not to mention sprinkler heads as well.

    It's no biggie to repair...unlesss you've poked 100 holes throughout the system.

    Dennis
     
  9. SodKing

    SodKing LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,648

    I have repaired them for free. I have no problem withthat since our average client is with us for 10+ years. That being said if he is a problem and you would lose money on him this year, repair it and bill him for it. Also send him a note why you are billing him, the system was installed improperly.
     

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