How would YOU handle this?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by PrimeGreen Lawn, May 15, 2001.

  1. PrimeGreen Lawn

    PrimeGreen Lawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 170

    OK, I have one gas station "Shell" in my area that I mow weekly. Only takes 15 minutes with trim. For two weeks in a row, they have not been able to turn the sprinkler system off. They kept telling me to come back tomorrow and it will be taken care of. I did this 3 times!:mad: I was able to cut about 60% of the property the first day but could not cut the remaining with all thoes sprinkler stems sticking up! I asked the owner to pay me partial payment for what I have done. but refused and dosent want to pay at all for a job incomplete when it' absolutely HIS fault :blob2:

    Any opinions?...Please leave comments.

  2. Freetime

    Freetime LawnSite Member
    Messages: 112

    This is my opinion on gas stations, most are “owned” by Saudi/ Indians that love to haggle about price “geme deal geme deal, oh man it no take no time to cut grass you charge to much come on lets make deal” ” expecting to be provided service for next to nothing using whoever will cut for the month then it’s on to the next guy, still owing the last one.

    You are better off without the business if you don’t absolutely need it; the job has already cost you money and probably will never make enough money to warrant the necessary “customer maintenance”

    Tell them to politely jump in a pond!

    Just my opinion on gas stations and the “owners”
  3. PrimeGreen Lawn

    PrimeGreen Lawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 170

    Your right about the owners of this place. The Indian owners haggled with me about 15 minutes on the price, but I woulden't break a cent. Somehow we still got the job.

  4. Got Grass?

    Got Grass? LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 363

    I'm not sure about the gas station sprinklers. But I've had to cut a few demo houses with those darned sprinklers that seem to always turn on when I'm unloading the equip. :mad: Unfortunatly thay have to be cut with all the water thay are getting. Usually thay turn on in only one area so you start in another, when you see them go off in the one area you get off the lawn quick so you dont get soaked when thay turn on you. Then go to the area that just shut off, cut that & by the time your done the other area sould be about to shut off. Take a small break if thay arnt or wear your rain gear. I've managed to get pretty good at timing them arround here.
  5. Toroguy

    Toroguy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,075

    I wouldnt give up to fast. Let them know the day you plan to mow. Then explain that the sprinkler system needs to be off when you mow. Have them reset the timer for early AM or OFF for the day you visit. If they dont, tell them you chose not to work in the "rain" and they will need to find a new service.

    Any logical buisnessman will see your point when explained this way.
  6. Guido

    Guido LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,087

    I'll go with ToroGuy on this one, no sense in loosing an account if its making you money.

    Definetly set some guidelines with the owner though, and let him know he will be billed when you show up on a schedueled day and the sprinklers were on, to make up for the extra tall grass when you finally get to mow it.

    Good Luck, and let us know how it turns out!
  7. mowerman90

    mowerman90 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,491

    Just sit back and think about your problem logically. You can't mow the entire site because the sprinklers are on. Simple solution. Find the Sprinkler system main shutoff valve and turn it off. Mow. Then turn it back on and go in and demand your payment. Simple.
  8. smburgess

    smburgess LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 467

    Ed's thinking right! That's the first thing I thought of also.
  9. Lawngeek

    Lawngeek Guest
    Messages: 0

    turn it off and charge for it now its usually a plastic lid set at ground level there are sub stations and main valves underground..dont turn it off yet now go in there and offer them your services ( now if the sprinklers dont shut off when you crank the main valves there is something seriously wrong)if they wont go for it tell them to call you when the lawn is serviceable..believe me you dont need this job that bad
  10. jrebeiro

    jrebeiro LawnSite Member
    Messages: 94

    I wouldn't touch a sprinkler system unless you service it. We personally void all warranties on a system if anyone touches that system except for us and the owner.

    We have a few accounts that water the lawn early morning so when we arrive at 8am the backyard is still being watered. We just cut the front and by the time we are in the back the cycle is over. If we get there in the beginning of a cycle and the customer is not home we do a nearby account first and then return. If there are no accounts within a 5 minute drive we leave a message for the customer telling why we did not cut the lawn and to reschedule their watering cycle. The first time this happens I usually do not charge them but I let them know in the future there will be a charge for missing a visit by no fault of ours and when I return to cut for the longer grass.

    Just my nickle 'n dime

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