Saturday, February 28, 2015

Lawn Sprinkler Irrigation Startup

An important step in caring for your yard comes at this time of year, particularly if you had your sprinkler system winterized back in late fall.  The mistake that can be made is improperly performing a Lawn Sprinkler Irrigation Startup, particularly where a water pump drawing from Lake Murray is concerned.  When starting your Goulds Water Pump up for your sprinkler system, its important to take these steps.

First, if any antifreeze was put into the water pump when they winterized it, you must carefully drain it from the pump into a container.  Flushing it out a bit as well would be environmentally friendly.  Once all of the antifreeze from winterization is gone, replace the pump plug carefully and tighten only snugly, not to overtighten.

Secondly, you must prime the pump by removing the top cap on the irrigation pump pipe.  Drag a hose down from the house or other water supply and fill the pump housing and as much water as it will take until it is overflowing.  Sometimes you will need to run the pump briefly then fill with more water. 

Once the pump is primed, you must then carefully bleed the air out of the sprinkler system.  Turn each zone on, one at a time until all air is out of the system. 

Once the irrigation water pump priming procedure is done, you can then set the control panel for the correct watering duration and time according to the weather.  If it has been raining a lot, just leave the timer off.  If it is dry, then set the timer to water the grass accordingly. 

Thursday, January 8, 2015

How to repair broken PVC irrigation pipe

Wow, cold in Lexington S.C. today huh?  If you have a lawn sprinkler irrigation system, Lexington S.C. you might want to have a look at the water main pipes, spigots and valves after this freeze thaws.  You very well may have a broken PVC irrigation water pipe that needs to be repaired.  PVC pipes crack and burst when the low temperatures sustain for more than a couple of days.

To repair a broken PVC pipe on your sprinkler system, you must first excavate all of the dirt from around the area.  Often times this can be tedious because there are wires in the area and you don't want to bump your shovel into the pipe in another spot because if you do that it is likely the pipe will then be cracked in that spot as well. 

You need to have plumbing expertise too.  Sometimes, 90 degree elbows or slip t's can crack which would call for a repair to the pvc pipe junction.  This calls for precise measurement, sometimes specialty repair parts, and skill that comes with practice.

After doing the repair, you need to purge the air from the system.  Winterization of sprinkler systems in South Carolina is not always done, but if it has already been done you won't need to bleed the system until you do an irrigation start up in the spring.  Nevertheless, if you do need to bleed the system, you will need to carefully open the backflow control valve and the bleeder valves on all zones to slowly let water back into the system and pressurize.  If done incorrectly, the water hammer can cause even more headaches and broken pipes.

Trust the professionals at Lexington Sprinkler Repair to service your sprinkler system!  Call us today at (803)331-5323 or visit us online at


Friday, January 24, 2014

Water Pump Pressure Switch Replacement

If you draw water from Lake Murray S.C. for your lawn irrigation or sprinkler system, sooner or later you will need a Water Pump Pressure Switch Replacement.  When water pressure drops in your bladder tank when a spigot or the irrigation is turned on, this switch will turn on the water pump at a certain pressure level.

The Water Pump Pressure Switch can fail for a number of reasons.  If you look at the contacts on the inside of this (high voltage) box, you will see where the electrical connection is made.  If, at one of those connections you see black or corroded terminals, it should be replaced.  One interesting cause of failure is ants.  Ants will nest inside these warm areas and sometimes burn at the terminal causing a bad connection. 


Sunday, January 5, 2014

sprinkler valve locating service, Lexington and Columbia S.C.

If your lawn sprinkler system is malfunctioning and you need to repair the Rain Bird, Hunter, Nelson or Toro Valves, you may have a need to find the valve and call on a sprinkler valve locating service.  Sometimes irrigation valves are buried under overgrown grass sod, under mulch, or just about anywhere in the yard.  A professional sprinkler repair company local to you in Lexington or Columbia, S.C. can help.  These specialty services use special locating equipment and years worth of technique and experience to find and repair your irrigation valves.  Some companies will simply find the valve for you, allowing you to repair the valve on your own.  Lexington Sprinkler Repair can be contacted at (803)331-5351 and is your local resource for everything related to your sprinkler system.      

Friday, January 25, 2013

Spring Sprinkler System Startup

If you have irrigation in your yard you may want to get it tuned up in time for spring watering.  A spring lawn sprinkler system startup or "tune-up" with a reputable sprinkler repair Lexington S.C. company is the way to go, saving you time and perhaps bringing your system more intune with water conservation and efficiency.

A spring sprinkler system startup consists of several service elements designed to maximize the functionality of your system.  First, a quick inspection of your backflow control valve is in order.  This valve is typically turned to the off position for the winter months.  It should be slowly turned back on, preferably with one or more of the zone valves turned on to properly bleed the system of any air pockets.  Any air in the system can "jar" the valves or damage the internal workings of the valves, sometimes resulting in breaks in the pvc connections or damage to the system.

Next, each zone is started up, preferably from the control panel (or "timer").  Turning each zone on for a few minutes further purges any air from the system.  The sprinkler heads in each zone are observed for coverage and set for proper spray pattern, to see if they are turning side to side, and to see if there is any clogging occuring in the popup nozzles.  When the zone is turned "off", the heads are then inspected to see if they retract back down into the ground.  If the sprinkler heads do not go back down, you may want to replace that head so your lawn mower doesn't break it.

Finally, the irrigation timer is set for the proper watering time according to the season.  Typically, very little watering is done in the winter.  In anticipation of new spring grass growth though, systems are set to whatever frequency and duration would keep the moisture in the soil to an optimal level.  This varies with slope, sun exposure, soil type, type of turf, and many other factors.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Drip Irrigation System Information

Effectively water your plants with a drip irrigation system.  The soil’s moisture will be kept at an optimum level, and this will save time and money.  These systems work well for home gardening, landscaping, farming, and greenhouses.

Drip irrigation systems are made up of several different components, including a valve, a backflow preventer, a pressure regulator, a filter, a tubing adapter, and drip tubing with emitters.  The drip tubing is placed along plants, and water is released from the emitters.

Water is applied slowly and directly to the soil, watering your plants at the roots where it’s most beneficial.  Water is soaked into the soil before it can run off or evaporate.  Also, water is only going where it is needed, which in turn conserves water.

You may have a drip irrigation system installed professionally, or you can use a do-it-yourself installation kit.  Do-it-yourself kits are simple to install, and drip systems are pretty forgiving of design errors.  You can purchase kits complete with everything you will need.  Or you can find instructions on how to create your own system, and buy all the fittings yourself.

With the installation and use of a drip irrigation system, your landscaping and garden will get proper and much needed moisture.  Fertilizer and nutrient loss can be minimized, as can soil erosion.  Drop irrigation is a great solution for home gardening, farming, or greenhouse watering needs.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Should I Winterize my Sprinkler System?

Lexington sprinkler repair can winterize your irrigation system, preparing it for the cold freezing weather if it is deemed necessary.  Winterizing can be an important step in maintaining your system because it prevents damage that could lead to costly repairs.  Individual consideration is given as to whether it is needed (It may be warm enough to let it slide) and, if it is needed, which method to use.
Although freezing temperatures are short-lived in the Lexington South Carolina and Chapin areas, they still can pose a threat to lawn sprinkler systems.  For this reason, you need to winterize your system before the first freeze of the season, draining and removing all water either by manual drain, auto drain, or blowout.

 The manual drain method is used when manual drain valves are at the end and low points of the irrigation pipes.  This is the easiest and less invasive method.  Your contractor will shut off the sprinkler water supply, and then open all manual drain valves.  Once water has been drained from the mainline, he will drain all the water between the shut off valve and backflow device.  Then he can let all the water drain through the bottom of the sprinkler, closing the manual drain valves when all the water has drained.
In some areas of the Country or on the more high end systems, the automatic drain method is used when automatic drain valves are at the end and low points of the irrigation pipes.  They can open and drain automatically when air pressure in the pipes falls below 10 PSI.  Your contractor can activate these valves by shutting off the sprinkler water supply, and then relieving the pressure in the system by activating a zone.  The rest of the draining procedure is like that of the manual drain method.  Your system could actually have a combination of manual drain valves on the mainline, and automatic drain valves on the lateral lines.

The “blow out” method requires your contractor to use an air compressor.  He will remove the backflow device to attach the compressor OR install a quick connect on the water supply side of the system.  The valves will then be turned on one by one, and the compressor will be turned on to blow out all the water.  He will then move from one valve to the next, repeating the process.  Once he has finished the blow out, he will turn off the control panel clock timer.

Lexington Sprinkler Repair can assist you in maintaining the integrity and operation of your system by winterizing it.  If you live in Lexington or Chapin, you know that freezing pipes are indeed a possibility.