Common Causes of Sprinklers Not Working

If your sprinklers are barely spraying then it will be one of a few issues.

The most likely is that the system has a leak and pressure is getting released at a point other than the nozzles. Most likely is that a riser has broken and needs replacing.

Another possibility is that all nozzles are blocked. Rather than trying to unblock them you’re probably better off just replacing them.

Another possibility is that the solenoid has seized and is partially shut. This is the least likely option.

So

a) check for leaks around the base of sprinklers.

b) remove a nozzle and check to see if there is good water pressure.

c) if neither of the above resolve the issue then you may need to check out the solenoid.

By a process of deduction you should be able to find the problem!

How to Use an Add a Station

If you ever find yourself in a situation where one of the wires to your solenoids has broken and you either can’t be bothered or are unable to find the break then ‘add a station’ is your friend!

By using this device you can make one power wire serve two solenoids, meaning you can either add a solenoid in a space where there is no access for new wires, or you can keep a solenoid operational by using the add a station on the functioning wire.

It’s saved a lot of people over the years and is one of the most useful retic devices I have come across.

Can I Install Reticulation While it is Raining?

Yeah you can.

But the pipes get crusty with sand and they are harder to cut and keep clean.

The green retic glue will still work even with a little water on it so you don’t need the two surfaces perfectly dry and clean – although that is preferable.

The biggest challenge of rainy days is definitely the sand that sticks to the pipes but just carry a towel and wipe the ends before joining and it should be fine!

After the Bobcat

I often get called to go in and fix the retic after the bobcat has been thru and done his work.

Today I was in Butler and the bobcat had smashed thru the main line, broken the wiring as well as ripping up most of the pipe down one side of the rear. It didn’t help that the area was full of roots and that the client wasn’t completely sure on where he wanted things to go… Add to that a 3 hour deadline and intermittent rain and it was potentially a difficult day.

But we got the main line repaired and wires reconnected. Then we worked together on the sprinklers to the rear and by 10.50am we were done.

It’s impossible to quote a job like this as you simply can’t estimate a cost when you don’t know how much damage is done. Fortunately it wasn’t too bad today and with two of us going hard we managed to get it ready for turf in a couple of days time.

Everything is fixable! It just takes time and patience as you track down the breaks and leaks.

Should I Use Netafim Dripline on My Garden?

If you want to achieve maximum water efficiency then there is no question that Netafim Dripline is your friend!

Here is a job I did recently in Yanchep where new native plants had been installed and the client wanted to ensure minimal wastage of water. Now that the Dripline is in he can mulch the area.

If you are on a bore then you may like to consider ‘bore line ‘, similar but not pressured compensated – which usually isn’t an issue on a bore.

This dripline is extremely effective at dripping water right next to the plants and is designed to resist root invasion of the drip emitters.

While there is no digging involved in a project like this dripline is a more expensive product and generally works out a little more costly than sprays.

Roots in Reticulation!

Sometimes your retic fails and you just can’t be bothered fixing it…

If that is the case then chances are that after a season or two roots will have infested the system and we will have to hey them out before it will work again.

Like anything in life – the longer you leave it the more costly and time consuming it is to repair.

So if you’ve been delaying on that fix you know that you need then give us a call now!

Patchy Lawn?

So you’ve got a bare area in your lawn and you’re thinking of revitalising it with lawn seed?

What you need to find out before doing anything is why the bare area happened in the first place. Otherwise chances are the problem will simply recur.

Reasons the lawn may be bare are:

– The lawn doesn’t get enough sun.

– The lawn doesn’t get enough water.

– There are lawn beetle in it.

So before doing anything first work out what the problem is.

And then it’s to the solution. Obviously ‘lawn seed’ is not the way to fix any of the problems above.

That said I have never seen lawn seed work as a successful solution in any setting. It’s partly because the new ‘lawn’ is always sparse and partly because it rarely gets watered enough to sustain it.

New roll on lawn is always a better option, but only if it gets watered and is laid with adequate sun.

If You Look Hard Enough

Yesterday I went to try and sort out why the retic pipe kept bursting on a bore in Ridgewood.

Usually there is an obvious answer. The first step was a new controller and then a check that the solenoids were all opening as they should have been.

All good there.

I dug a hole and found two 25mm pipes going to the rear yard – but with no water coming out of the sprinklers.

I drilled small holes at various points along the pipes and water cane out. Hmmm… water is definitely getting thru, is there a blockage somewhere? Has someone capped off the line and not told me?

The pipes were under pavers so it wasn’t easy to test them. Eventually after 90 minutes of trying to locate the problem I lifted a slab right at the end of the run to the back and discovered that each pipe had a filter attached and the filters were completely blocked.

I have never seen filters at that place in a pipe before but once I removed them water flowed freely.

Moral of the story = for every problem there is a solution if you look hard enough (and long enough)

If you have a tricky problem then give me a call. I reckon I can fix it 🙂

I am Getting a Fuse Message on my Irritirol Kwikdial Reticulation Controller

If I had a dollar for every time I hear this…

And if you have spent time looking for the ‘fuse’ then you will be frustrated because there isn’t one.. And the battery symbol with the line thru it doesn’t mean that the battery is dead, because there isn’t a battery either…

Ok – so whoever designed these wasn’t thinking ease of use!

What does the fuse message mean?

a) You have a solenoid coil that is faulty and causing the controller to fail.

b) The controller has a problem and needs replacing.

Usually I can tell by looking at the controller which is the most likely scenario. If your controller is old, outdoors and looking like its been exposed to rain then chances are it will need replacing. If the error is intermittent then its almost certainly the controller and if the screen is flickering just a little then that is another clue that the controller is about to die.

If your controller is in good condition, maybe inside a garage and the display is stable then it may be that one of the solenoids is the problem. We can determine that by removing solenoid wires and testing to see if it fails with various solenoids disconnected.

As a guide at the time of writing this post (March 2018) a solenoid is usually around $150-250 to locate and replace while a controller is around $385.00 to replace.

 

 

Rainbird ESP-RZX

The ESP-RZX Controller provides zone based set up that is easier to understand by untrained users. We supply and fi, 6 and 8 zone models at $385.00 inc GST and $415.00 inc GST respectively.

These controllers are easy to use, have a 3 year warranty and no dials to get sticky or break off. The large LCD display shows all of the programming for each zone at the same time. Simple graphic based user interface is easy to explain and presents every controller feature at your fingertips.

If you are seeking a simple to use and top quality controller then I can recommend this one to you. More info from Rainbird is here.