lawn and landscape irrigation system planning

Discussion in 'Lawn Care/Landscaping' started by Lakee911, Oct 29, 2009.

  1. Lakee911

    Lakee911 I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)

    Messages:
    1,328
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    Can anyone recommend a good source of information on setting up a lawn and landscape irrigation system?

    I'm going to have a trench opened up (for various reasons) that will be nearly the entire length of my property I'd like to go ahead and bury some piping for this that I can tie into later.

    I do not know where to start as far as planning goes.

    Thanks,
    Jason
  2. FloridaOrange

    FloridaOrange Plumbing Designer

    Messages:
    1,317
    Location:
    SW Florida
    Alot will depend on water source flow and pressure and the size of the lawn, number of zones and number of heads.
  3. Lakee911

    Lakee911 I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)

    Messages:
    1,328
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    I can get the pressure and flow.

    Do I record static pressure with nothing on and then record pressure while measuring the flow rate?

    I also have the size of the lawn and flowerbeds obviously. I have a site plan in CAD. As far as the number of zones, numbers of heads, types of heads, etc. that is the part that I need help with.

    Jason
  4. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,395
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    You might try what I did years back when I did my yard system. I went to one of the large irrigation material suppliers in the area. I found that given a scale drawing, water supply information, and my agreement to purchase all of my supplies from them, they would design my system for free. I can't verify that you could get the same deal in your area, but since a system designer can figure all of the factors in that affect the design, it would be a wise investment.
  5. Lakee911

    Lakee911 I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)

    Messages:
    1,328
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    Not a bad idear ... I'll look into that.

    Thx.
  6. FloridaOrange

    FloridaOrange Plumbing Designer

    Messages:
    1,317
    Location:
    SW Florida
    What Gary said is a very good idea, I've heard others do the same.

    If you want to do it the hard way and as you say, have your site on CAD, you can figure the spread distance and flow with a given head. That should tell you how many heads per zone you can have and from there figure out how many zones you need.

    However you do it, do it with some forward planning. Placement of your solenoid valves, shut-offs, controller and even your piping can save some headaches in the future. Plan it so you can easily winterize your system too. Have fun with it.
  7. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    Toro, Rainbird, and Orbit all have free design services on line, or mail in. You have to provide a scale drawing, and accurate information about available water supply.
  8. American Irrigation

    American Irrigation Irrigation Installation and Repair Contractor

    Messages:
    10
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Regardless of who designs your system the only way to know what your meter will flow is via a flow test. Cut into the supply wherever you intend to put the backflow preventer and run water into a known size container (5 gal bucket works good) and calculate how much water your getting for a set period of time. Many times I plumb in a pressure guage and a ball valve downstream from the pressure guage so I can check gallonage at a minimum pressure (40ish hopefully). Then use that data to design the system. Not all 3/4 meters flow the same. Ive seen crimped taps, partially clogged taps and all kinds of other issues restricting flow.

    Good luck!
  9. Lakee911

    Lakee911 I&C Engineer (mostly WWTP)

    Messages:
    1,328
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    Maybe the information is available from the suppliers, but do I need to show plants (type and size) on my diagram?

    How necessary is a BFP? I know in theory why they are needed and the legal reasons, but if money is tight, can I skimp here? The reason why I ask is most new homes have them, but very rarely do I ever see them added to older homes.

    Thanks,
    Jason
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2009
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