Sprinkler Systems

Welcome to our community

Be apart of something great, join today!

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
My project for the past week or so has been work on installing a sprinkler system.  It started well over a week ago with reading, planning, etc.  Last Monday was the start of moving some mulch/landscaping fabric around and the very beginning of trenching.  A little continued work on that in evenings Tuesday and Wednesday.

Took PTO Thursday and Friday, so the past 4 days were constant work.  Dug out a lot of dirt under the deck to make way for main lines.  Rented a trencher to do the sections that weren't under the deck and make way for lateral lines through the rest of the yard to sprinkler locations.  Haven't been this sore in a while and still have a ways to go.

Two of the five boxes for control valves are in place.  The wires to go from valves to the central controller is ran as well.  I'm hoping to get one or two more boxes in their place after work tonight.  Once those are in place I can create the manifolds (series of pipes/valves for each box) and get them in place - then finally the home stretch of laying out the lateral lines and placing sprinklers.
 

C Pav

Codename: GB6
Members
Good job man. Honestly though I would pass on such a project. Yes I would love to do things for myself and say I did but if taking PTO to do such work is how it needs to be done count me out.
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
Meh, I got PTO to burn - plus that way I'm getting paid to do the project, not just using up all my free time.  Though of course I used up plenty of evenings and the whole weekend too.

Last night I got 3 of the valve boxes put in their places.  Got the holes to the right size / depth.  Filled with a bit of rock for drainage.  Placed the boxes, ran the main line in, connected a valve or two, and ran laterals out.  Then completed the wiring with waterproof wire connectors as required.  That leaves 2 boxes to go.  Once those are in it will be the home stretch because I'll be able to turn the water on and not have it gushing out of a pipe anywhere, then manually turn one valve on at a time to flush out any debri and finish up the lateral line runs and actually attaching sprinkler heads.
 

nodle

Cheesemonger
Administrator
It will be nice when it's done though. My next place I will get these done.
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
Got the boxes all in place and have valves connected to the main line in each box.  So, the water from the house to the valves is on and can remain on until this fall when the system needs to be blown out.  There were a few leaks - so while they cost a bit more invest in worm drive hose clamps rather than the ones you just pinch tight with a crimper - I ended up replacing all the crimped ones, even those that weren't leaking.  Had used worm drive on all the main line stuff any way, just had to replace things on the valve assemblies I'd made.

Now the light at the end of the tunnel is visible - just running the smaller lines out and hooking up sprinklers, then the trenches can be filled.
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
Got the boulevard on both sides of the driveway in last night.  Needs a little more fill in work, but sprinklers are starting to go in and work :)
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
Well, sprinker's are in all 5 front yard zones (1 larger area with some rotors, and 4 smaller areas with spray heads) and 2 of the 4 back yard zones (the 2 larger areas with rotors).  I probably could've gotten the last 2 spray head zones done, but started working on backfilling some trenches last night instead.  Still plenty to be done, but getting closer.

I had bought out the stock of a few parts at Menard's in both Fargo and Moorhead and they haven't restocked yet.  Needed a few more of one particular item to finish the 2 rotor zones yesterday - so had to make a 40mi trip into MN to hit the next closest Menards early yesterday.
 

nodle

Cheesemonger
Administrator
I like ask the different types of nozzles you can get they make all sorts depending on your application.
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
Finished one zone of the spray heads in the backyard last night - so one more area of 6-7 spray heads to do and all the sprinklers will be in.  I'm not sure if I have quite enough of the 1" PE pipe to make it or not, it will be close, but I might end up buying more just to be able to finish.  The valve's all have wires to them, but I need to organize and wire them into the controller in the house yet.   Once the last zone of sprinklers is in the proper complete backfill of all the trenches will still be a pretty big job to finish up.  Then some smaller things to finish it out like the wiring, sealing up some holes in the valve boxes and some conduit with silicone, replacing some landscaping fabric around areas the valve boxes got installed in and fine tuning the coverage of the sprinklers.

There are definitely a lot of nozzles to choose from as @nodle mentioned.  For rotors the nozzle selection is minimal - basically just how many gallons per minute (GPM) the head will put out.  There are some low angle nozzle options as well in lower GPM nozzles.  Mostly for rotors you have to know how many GPM your system can do, how many sprinklers are in the zone and the coverage area of each head.  For example, one zone in the back yard has 6 rotors.  One of them is a 90 degree arc (corner), three of them do 180 degree arc and 2 of them are a 360 degree arc.  The 90 degree arc will cover it's area twice as much as the 180 arc because it has half the distance to travel - so general you determine the GPM of your lowest arc and then have to set the others to match GPM coverage.  In my example, the 90 degree will be 1GPM, the 180s will be 2GPM and the 360's will be 4GPM.  So 1GPM + 3 * 2GPM + 2 * 4GPM = 15 GPM.  This works well since I feel good with 16 GPM or less - think the system could push 18 - 20 GPM if I wanted, but it might wear out some piping in the house faster trying to force that high of a flow through some smaller (3/4") diameter copper.  My rotors are all adjustable anywhere from 0-360 degrees of coverage, though you can get fixed ones (but why would you)

Spray heads have a lot of options, but don't cover as much ground - though they make rotator nozzles that do cover a little larger area.  Mostly you have different degrees of coverage (fixed 90, 180, 270, 360, etc) and variable ones.  Mine are currently all 0 - 360 degree adjustable nozzles that cover 8-15 feet.  With these since they just spray water over the entire area the GPM depends on the nozzle and how many degrees of coverage you are set on.  My largest spray head zone has 10 heads and will push the limits of my available GPM.  I did consider some specialty nozzles for narrow strips that cover an area like 4' x 30' - basically designed for boulevards or long narrow strips of yard.  These Strip heads also have matching End Strip heads that cover a portion of the distance and are at 90 degrees, so you put the end ones on each corner and the strip ones in between.  In the end I stuck with spray heads because my boulevards are wider than they seem and the 8-15' radius of the standard spray head is better.

The negative to spray heads is that they spray pretty small water droplets and are much more affected by wind, so I do have some rotator nozzles to replace a few of the spray nozzles for testing.  One problem (that could also be a positive) with them is they cover a larger area, so not ideal for the boulevard areas, but may be great for other areas I used spray heads.  The other problem is they are adjustable from like 40 - 270 degrees, or there is a fixed 360 degree one, so you have a little less control over coverage and have to order special ones for your 360 degree areas.  The advantage is they shoot streams of water, so it's more even coverage and less affected by wind.
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
Guess I haven't updated in a bit on this.  All the sprinklers are in, some trenches still to be filled and excess dirt to be moved around, but the project is nearly done.  Also came in handy for filling a pool...  hose bib on the house you might get 5-6 gallons a minute.  Sprinkler system 18-20 GPM, so when the need to fill large things with water came up I just disconnected a hose from the valve to sprinklers and hooked up a length we could stretch across the yard like a garden hose, only a few times faster at filling
 

nodle

Cheesemonger
Administrator
I see Amazon has some deals today for these units that tie into your sprinkler system and allows you to use your smart phone to control them. Pretty cool for people with sprinkler systems. Just thought I would let you know.
 

ndboarder

Bill Gates' Gimp
Members
I see Amazon has some deals today for these units that tie into your sprinkler system and allows you to use your smart phone to control them. Pretty cool for people with sprinkler systems. Just thought I would let you know.

I have the RainMachine controller for my sprinklers - so it's all controllable on phones, PC, etc already
 
Top