We’ve previously measured the water pressure at your point of connection with no water running; this is called your static pressure. People in the same trade also share some unspoken assumptions that aren’t always clear to outsiders. You could, for example, have one cluster of valves servicing the front yard and another for the back, both connected to your irrigation mainline. If you exceed what the pipes are designed to handle, you’ll have to replace them that much sooner. The final step in designing an irrigation system for your garden is figuring out how much it will set you back. Orbit's easy-to-use sprinkler design tool allows you to create a custom sprinkler design plan and parts list instantly - online, real-time, free. In other words, it’s really better to accept a safe GPM number for your sprinklers than to flood your basement on a regular basis. … is certainly not the easiest task in the world. Up until now, we’ve been speaking about sprinklers, pipes, and so forth in pretty general terms. If the ground freezes down to a couple of inches deep, it’s recommended that you use piping rated for double the normal operating pressure, even assuming that you’ll drain or blow out the water lines come fall. It’s up to you to do the math, but it’s worth remembering that using a larger-than-necessary pipe almost never causes problems and may keep you from running into a few. Their meanings are pretty much what you’d expect. If you’re unsure of either, it might actually be cheaper to pay for professional, hassle-free installation. Wherever possible, you’ll probably want to use pop-up sprayers in your garden; they don’t really cost any more than those mounted on a permanent riser and are more likely to survive interactions with gardening tools and dogs. You can also install a nozzle designed to give a smaller spray radius, angle, or flow rate (adjusting a 4 GPM sprayer to cover only a 90° arc doesn’t necessarily cut its watering rate to 1 GPM). Think of it this way: plants basically need dirt, sunlight, and water – only one of these is really under your control. While you should check the data sheet of whatever sprinker heads you plan to buy, the numbers this gives will probably be comparable to these: The amount of pressure you have available will therefore limit your options as to what types of irrigation you can install. You might, for instance, want a sprayer zone to take care of a hardy groundcover and combine this with a drip irrigation system to support more water-hungry shrubs. For their part, most full-time landscapers will think about things in the following order when designing an irrigation system: When you follow this step-by-step program, you’ll never have to ask yourself: “What now?”. However, especially if you live in a hilly area, this may be fairly inaccurate – a rise of only 30 feet changes the pressure by almost 15 psi – so it’s better to use a cheap pressure gauge to get an exact reading. A backflow preventer stops irrigation water that potentially contains traces of fertilizer, manure, and other nasty stuff from flowing upstream and contaminating the municipal supply. It simply means “where the sprinkler system is hooked up to the main water supply”. Note: Remember that pressure losses become larger as flow rate increases! This provides the greatest amount of flow and pressure, which is … Some of these preliminaries may seem tedious, but they’re definitely worth knowing about. Regardless of how much money you spend or how carefully you position your sprinklers, your garden will not be watered correctly if you neglect to take these two factors into account. “Them especially.”. Buying something cheap often means having to buy it twice. On most sprinkler heads, you can adjust the spray radius using a screwdriver without reducing the pressure in the zone as a whole. Water is heavy. This is not an accident: understanding these can make the difference between a design that works flawlessly and one that barely functions.

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