Dilemma: Where should we draw the line when deciding to hire a professional or save money and hire an amateur? This question is simple if we are talking about who to go to if you have a broken arm, or even who to hire to build your house, but at what point does the grey area come into play where you might be more focused on getting a job done, rather than getting it done right?
I pose this question because when I activated my irrigation system the other day I noticed I had a leak. This was not just any leak, it was coming from about 3' underground in a very random place that should never be damaged. After an hour of digging I was expecting to find some cracked PVC pipe, but to my surprise I simply found that the pipe had separated from its joint. Whoever installed the system forgot to use any glue on this small section, which basically means it was being held together like two pieces of Legos. This was just one of many issues that have come up with my irrigation since we moved in, so it's clear that whoever installed this system took many shortcuts and installed things incorrectly.
So just as you might be ready to hire anyone to install your irrigation system, think about being in this situation in the future. I have had several customers ask me to fix underground piping issues that have broken or were installed incorrectly, and although I know how to do it I normally direct them to call someone who is licensed for this type of work to make sure it is done right. I can fix my own irrigation - but I am no expert.
Ask yourself this question - Does fixing my irrigation fall within the grey area between hiring an amateur and hiring a professional? Before you go with an amateur, think twice about the consequences and possibly spend the extra buck to have the job done right.