How much should I allow for irrigation maintenance? If you are planning on paying an irrigation or landscape company to maintain the system You should allow 2-5 % of the capita irrigation installation cost for irrigation maintenance.
Irrigation system maintenance needs to be budgeted for. Unfortunately a lot of good irrigation systems turn into disasters due to the lack of irrigation maintenance.
Remember that when you choose an irrigation system to be installed, you are choosing a lot of infrastructure to be added to your home. An irrigation system on an average home in Melbourne could have as much as 1 km of pipework installed, 100″s sprinkler heads and kilometers of dripline. That is a lot of infrastructure to manage.
Irrigation systems can be damaged my pedestrian traffic, pets, wildlife, tradesmen, gardening, vehiclular traffic and sometimes just by blatant vandalism.
We recently attended a big commercial site that had a large irrigation system installed about 5 years ago. They had not budgeted enough money for irrigation maintenance and had only engaged an irrigation company for a couple of hours at a time for reactive repairs. No one was looking after this huge irrigation system. The landscape (worth millions of dollars) was suffering due to the lack of care of the irrigation system.
We were called in to get the system operational, we did over 1000 repairs to the system and the repair bill hit over $20,000.00. but that was only the irrigation repair bill. The landscape repair bill ran into the hundreds of thousands and the water bill was 3 times what it should have been due to poor irrigation scheduling. So based on those figures the cost of not maintaining the irrigation system is far more expensive than properly maintaining it.
It makes financial sense to maintain your irrigation system.
So how much does PROACTIVE irrigation maintenance cost?
As a ballpark. For a site that has
< 500m2 of irrigated area allow $250 – $450 per year
501m2 to 1000m2 of irrigated area allow $350 – $750 per year
1001m2 to 2500m2 of irrigated area allow $450 to $850 per year
2501m2 to 4000m2 of irrigated area allow $750 to $1500 per year.
These figures don’t allow for systems prone to damage. If you have sprinklers installed on a road edge that cars constantly drive over or if you have a commercial site that is regularly vandalised – then maintenance costs can skyrocket.
At Ecostream we are trying to change the way people approach irrigation maintenance.
Most people are reactive when it comes to irrigation maintenance. If you call us to do your irrigation maintenance we will discuss proactive maintenance options with you.