Midwest: “We’re skipping two or three jobs every day because the customer fails to mark their heads. We call them seven to 10 days ahead to give them plenty of time. We also have Iowa One Call come out and mark utility lines, too (which they do right away).

“I just don’t get it. We notify customers a week (or more) in advance so they can mark their sprinkler heads, but when we get there no flags/paint/or any other kind of markings.

“Anybody else having a hard time getting their customers off their butt?”

Akron, Ohio: “I have been giving a two to three-day notice with no problems at all. Maybe seven to 10 days, they think they have plenty of time, then forget? Maybe try the shorter notice.”

Southeast Pennsylvania: “If you want something done right, do it yourself. That’s why I mark the sprinklers and charge well for aeration.”

Dover, Del.: “I call my customers the morning of to make sure it’s done. I can do this on the road before I start heading there.

“Also, about half of my customers opt to have me mark their heads for a nominal fee of $25. Two guys with radios takes about five minutes.”

North Lewisburg, Ohio: “We call about one week in advance and also on the day of. Before starting, we do a quick walk-through of the yard looking for anything that may be damaged. If they don’t want to mark the heads, that’s fine; we just make sure they understand who’s responsible for potential repairs.”

Midwest: “I spoke with perhaps the most reputable sprinkler system company in our area last week, and asked if it was smart for us to tinker with sprinkler systems so we could locate heads and control boxes. First thing out of his mouth was a loud laugh.

“Questions quickly arose:

“1) Are you willing to take responsibility for damage?

“2) Has the system already been winterized?

“3) Do you trust the homeowner for providing accurate information?

“4) If the homeowner has failed to have the system marked for over a week, that means they probably just don’t care.

“By the time our conversation ended, we both agreed that it’s always best to let the sprinkler system company (or the homeowner) do their job.”

“In Your Own Words” is contributed from the lawn care and landscape forum at www.lawnsite.com. Visit them, and join in the discussions.