April 20, 2011

Creating Your Own Automatic Sprinkler System

What You Need:
  • Sprinkler timer
  • Water sprinkler valves 
  • Valve manifolds
  • Lawn sprinkler heads
  • Sprinkler risers
  • Sprinkler irrigation pipe
  • Tube fittings/adapters
  • Tools (pipe cutter, sprinkler tape, etc)
Making your own automatic garden watering system may sound difficult. Don't let the title of this post scare you out of it. In such hard economic times, we are all trying to save money wherever we can. Here is one solution: build your automatic lawn sprinkling system yourself.
Whether you want an underground sprinkler system that requires digging or you want an above-ground watering system that is simple to install, you need to consider all the pieces and parts as well as the size of your yard.
The key to any automatic yard watering system is having a watering timer. Depending on the number of zones or stations your lawn has, you must accommodate that. Sprinkler timers range from 1 to 12 zones so whatever size your garden or lawn, you can find an automatic water timer that fits your watering needs.
Once you have determined the number of zones you need, you should decide what type(s) of sprinklers you prefer or that would work best for your yard. There are many kinds of sprinkler heads such as impact heads, pop-up sprinklers, shrub heads and much more. There are many different spray patterns and water spray distances that are available in water sprinklers.
Other important sprinkler system parts you need include water sprinkler valves and valve manifolds. Automatic sprinkler valves allow for controlled water flow throughout irrigation pipes or sprinkler tubing. Sprinkler valves may come with different features such as manual shut-off, pressure regulators and valve solenoids. Sprinkler valve manifolds act as a connection for multiple irrigation valves in a single place.
Sprinkler risers are also essential for making your own lawn irrigation system. Yard sprinkler heads need to be above the ground or flush with it to be effective. You may need water sprinkler risers to adapt sprinkler head height to your lawn.
You also need irrigation pipe, fittings and adapters to ensure optimal garden watering performance. Sprinkler pipe comes in different lengths, diameters and materials. If you are making a hose faucet-connected irrigation system, you will need standard garden hose to reach all of your yard sprinkler heads. Pipe fittings are used to ensure watertight connections between garden sprinklers and water irrigation pipe. Your automatic lawn sprinkling system may also require adapters to fit any existing components you may have.
There are many different types of tools needed for making a water sprinkler system. Sprinkler sealing tape, pipe cutters, screwdrivers and electrical components such as wire/grease caps may also be required.
Be sure to plan out how you want your automatic watering system designed and placed. Research parts and brands to ensure that you get the best Orbit sprinkler parts you need.


Phil Goold is a retired landscaper of 30 years. He loves being outside more than anything else, except maybe pie. He enjoys connecting with other landscapers and gardeners because everyone brings something new and fun to the table. Connect with Phil on Twitter and Google+.

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