filling/topping off a pond via sprinkler system

Discussion in 'Irrigation / Sprinkler Forum' started by Master Brian, Sep 30, 2009.

  1. Master Brian

    Master Brian DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    368
    Location:
    Kansas
    Has anyone done anything like this before?

    I'm in the process of installing a sprinkler system. I am working on one zone at a time as I move soil and plant grass. The local sprinkler company has been very helpful and I asked them this question and they said yes and he tried to explain, but I didn't catch everything he said and didn't want to keep him any longer.

    I am hoping a sandpoint well, with a 3/4hp pump, that I am in process of installing will power everything, if not, it will be tied to city water and this is a mute point as I don't want chlorinated (sp?) water filling if I'm not there to add neutralizer.

    I realize I would need a float sensor, like on a sump pump, and I've seen those. I was told I would also need a switch, forget name, that sends signal to pump for it to kick on. From there I am a bit lost how it would connect to a control panel and tie together.

    I should also mention I don't have a control panel yet, so if I should look at a certain one that would be great.

    I guess part of my confusion is, would it really need to be tied to the sprinkler system control panel....
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,233
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    water

    It would not "need" to be tied to the irrigation control panel, but it might be the easiest way. You WILL want the water to come from the same line that supplies your irrigation water, because that SHOULD have the proper safety devices if you connect to the city supply line. All you need is a water level switch, and there are many types of these, some more precise than a sump pump switch as far as controlling a fairly precise water level. that would connect to the 24 volt "Feed" circuit of the controller, not one of the zones, and also to an irrigation solenoid valve to actually add the water.
  3. Master Brian

    Master Brian DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    368
    Location:
    Kansas
    Hj, if all goes well, it won't be connected to city water, but a sandpoint well instead. I've already started installing the irrigation, but haven't made any perminant connections to a water source as I'm hoping the sandpoint will have the pressure to run the system. If not, It will be city water.

    With that said, no matter what happens with the irrigation, the pond would need to be connected to the well, as I don't want city water added, if I'm not around to kill the chlorine. Unless of course I could filter the water through a charcoal filter prior to it entering the pond. That wouldn't be hard and I have an extra filter, but just one more thing to go wrong!
  4. American Irrigation

    American Irrigation Irrigation Installation and Repair Contractor

    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    I would probably just make the pond a seperate valve, and put a manual float in the pond. That would be easiest, and then it would work off your sprinkler timer.
  5. BRD

    BRD New Member

    Messages:
    53
    Location:
    northeast
    I've set it up two ways. If you have a pressurized mainline, you could plumb it so a float switch works directly off of the mainline water. That eliminates the use of a valve and irrigation controller. The pond will automatically fill as needed. The other way is to use a electric zone valve wired to the controller and set to come on as you have programed it.
  6. American Irrigation

    American Irrigation Irrigation Installation and Repair Contractor

    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Only negative to running it full time off the main-line is that if it seeps, leaks, or gets debris in it, it will run forever. Seen many a 1,000 dollar water bill caused by a goofed up fill valve directly tied off the main.
  7. Daniels

    Daniels New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Spokane,WA
    I've used float valves(stock watering tank valves) to supply water to sprinkler system tanks and have had good luck. They have had low flow sources and the tank, I mean big tank, is under continuous flow from the well. But my thought is that if the sprinkler system is master valved (possible?) there would be little hazard in adding it directly to the sprinkler system. However, I would protect it with screening and cover just as I would a foot valve while drawing from a pond.
  8. TCox

    TCox New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    Loves Park, IL
    I'm originally from Wichita, so I know how chlorinated the water is. However, if the main purpose is just topping off for evaporation you really don't need to worry that much if you have to go with city water. Depending on the size of your pond, let's say for instance you are talking about a 2000 gallon Koi pond, you probably won't be adding but a few gallons a day in the summer. In the winter, remember, you will need to consider how you will winterize this line.
  9. Master Brian

    Master Brian DIY Senior Member

    Messages:
    368
    Location:
    Kansas
    If/when I do this, it will be done off a well. One, I don't want to risk it messing up and flooding my pond with hundreds or thousands of gallons of chlorinated water. Two, I don't want to have to worry about always adding water conditioner to the city water.

    The only question at this point, which is probably on hold until spring, is how will the sprinkler system be hooked up. Via city water or the well. I wasn't able to finish my well, as other more important projects came up, so it's likely on hold until spring. With that, I won't know until then, if the well will have enough volume/pressure/etc to run my sprinkler system. Again, we are speaking of a sandpoint well.

    You guys have definately given me some things to consider and I do appreciate that. I tend to ask a lot early on, so that I can run things through my head for a few months.

    As for winterizing the setup. That's a good question and one I haven't given much thought to. Being as it will be on the well, the simple answer is I'll simply blow it out and shut the pump off for the winter.

    The more complex answer is that the line, funny pipe or some sort of polypipe, will be buried 12" or so and maybe I can put one of those auto drain valves they use in sprinkler systems to keep water out of the line when it's off. The well is actually going to be placed in my garage, so it won't freeze in the winter and an auto on/off valve, for the pond, could be inside there as well. It would be nice to be able to possibly have water added during the winter if need be. Again, that one isn't thought through beyond my typing of this....

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