Outdoor sprinkler system and irrigation system repairs are available for all types of home or business sprinkler systems, including those that water grass, trees, flower gardens, herb and vegetable gardens, shrubs, and more. In addition to ongoing maintenance, services can repair sprinkler systems that won’t turn on; fix broken sprinkler heads or spray heads; resolve water-flow problems such as lack of water to an individual sprinkler head or an area of sprinkler heads, continually running water, or erratic water pressure; reprogram timers and fix broken timers; relocate sprinkler heads; and readjust lawn sprinkler direction or spread. Major cost factors that affect the cost of sprinkler system repairs include whether you hire a handyman or an irrigation professional, how many square feet you need inspected and repaired, where you are located, and how urgently you need repairs.
Handyman versus professional help
Irrigation professionals specially trained and certified to install and repair sprinkler and irrigation systems will typically have a higher hourly rate than non-specialist contractors who are adept at repairing and working with sprinklers. The cost difference accounts for irrigation pros’ specialized tools and training and their general industry expertise. For example, The Sprinkler Guy explains that irrigators are required to take continuing education classes every year. Here’s an example of the price contrast between handymen and irrigation professionals:
Eric’s Handyman Services in McKinney, Texas: $50 for first hour of labor
- The Sprinkler Guy, Dallas, Texas: $70 for first hour of labor
Minimum service rate
Often sprinkler repair workers have a minimum service charge, typically one hour of labor, for assessing repair needs and doing repairs. Even if a job takes only 10 minutes, the customer will pay for the full hour.
After the first hour, many sprinkler pros will charge in increments of their hourly fee for additional work time. For example, if a job takes 2.5 hours, the customer will pay for exactly that amount of time, not 3 full hours. Here are some examples of incremental rates:
Eric’s Handyman Services: $10 per 15 minutes after the first hour
- The Sprinkler Guy: $35 per 30 minutes after the first hour
Types of repair
The total cost of a sprinkler system repair often depends on the cost of labor and parts as well as the age of the system. Here are some average costs for materials and total repair costs for common sprinkler repairs:
Standard sprinkler head: $5
Broadcast sprinkler head: $10-$15, depending on style
Sprinkler pipe: $5 for unions, PVC joint and glue
Schedule 40 PVC pipe: $1.50 per foot for 1-inch pipe
Schedule 40 PVC pipe: $1 per foot for ¾-inch pipe
Sprinkler valve: $15
6-zone sprinkler timer: $50
- 9-zone timer sprinkler timer: $75
Total repair costs (including parts and labor)
Replace single broken sprinkler head: $60
Valve replacement: $150-$108
- Broken pipe, with full system check and 10 percent discount to new customers: $80 or under
More extensive repairs or the additional installation of pop-up sprinkler heads, tiny spray heads, backflow preventer, shutoff valve or sprinklers for major landscaping features can cost from $75 to $250 or more.
Many services offer discounts, so always be sure to ask. For example, both The Sprinkler Guy and Eric’s Handyman Services offer a 10 percent discount to seniors, and The Sprinkler Guy also offers 10 percent off to military service members. Companies may also offer a first-time customer discount, such as the 10 percent off that The Sprinkler Guy provides.
Service companies may charge extra for travel outside their range of service. For example, Eric’s Handyman Services charges a $10 travel fee for each day after the first day of work for repairs outside of his service area.
Companies may charge an additional fee if they’re called after hours or required to fast-track a customer’s needs. The Sprinkler Guy, however, does not charge a higher rate for urgent calls.
- Don’t pay for unnecessary sprinkler system winterization costs if your region doesn’t call for it. According to The Sprinkler Guy, temperatures have to stay below freezing for several weeks to affect an irrigation system. In Texas, for example, people with sprinkler systems just need to turn off the controller to protect the system.