August 12, 2014

A Sprinkler Audit

August is here and lawns will be feeling the summer heat for at least one more month.

Now is as good a time as any to perform your own irrigation audit on your lawn sprinkler system.

One good place to start is by determining how much water your lawn and plants are receiving. A good rule of thumb is one to one-and-a-half inches of water per week. Your lawn sprinkler system can certainly help you achieve this goal, especially if it is equipped with a timer. Yon can check those water levels by inserting a screwdriver or wooden paint stick into the ground and check for moisture. Another way to check water absorption is by placing plastic cups in various watering spots on your lawn an in your garden. Turn the lawn sprinkler system on and let it run for the normal amount of time if possible.  After the watering session is done, check the cups and see if the amount of water from the various cups is roughly the same. Record the water amount for each section of lawn.

Check your lawn sprinkler system timer. If you have a sloped lawn, consider using a lawn timer that can have different start times for different zones. A sloped lawn means water from one zone may slide down to another section of the lawn. Staggered start times can help alleviate this situation.

You also want make sure your lawn sprinkler systems is working across all zones. You want to check nozzles and sprinkler heads.

You can also opt for a professional irrigation audit of your lawn sprinkler system. A professional irrigation audit will typically consist of collecting data from the irrigation system and measuring things like precipitation rate and other metrics. This is done to make sure you are getting the most out of your lawn sprinkler system.


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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