Didn't see a sticky, but need troubleshooting tips for sprinkler system

Discussion in 'Irrigation / Sprinkler Forum' started by Tim in Fort Worth, Jun 21, 2016.

  1. Tim in Fort Worth

    Tim in Fort Worth Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    Thanks! That's some good information. I'd be interested in trying something like that. I did a quick search for "multiple stream rotors" but what I saw were nozzles that replaced the standard spray nozzles, and seemed to stick up above ground level. That would be lawnmower blade territory for me. Are they available in a pop-up style that drops back flush with ground level, or will I have to replace the entire head? I like the idea of slower application of water, and never did like the mist from the spray nozzles. It looks like there is a lot of evaporation in addition to the wind drift. Are they adjustable so that they will work with an existing layout in terms of water coverage from the sprinkler head to the farthest throw point and in between? A big consideration for me would be getting even coverage, either with each head or through the overlap of multiple heads.
     
  2. SteveW

    SteveW DIY Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE
    My favorite multiple-stream mini rotor is the Hunter MP Rotator. (RainBird also makes a similar mini-rotor which is also good.)

    Not adjustable radius that I know of but the degrees of arc is adjustable. Yes, these are pop-ups that in fact use the same body as spray heads (of the same brand, that is -- i.e. can replace Hunter spray head nozzle with Hunter MP Rotator nozzle).

    The neat thing about these kinds of heads is that the various streams that are produced at the same time are all different heights/throw distances.

    Toro makes a full-size multi-stream head, which used to be called "Stream Rotors". Those are for bigger areas and even more attractive when running.
     
  3. SteveW

    SteveW DIY Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE
    Did a little more research and Toro makes a mini multi-stream nozzle as well, and it does have an adjustable radius.

    Nice thing about these nozzles, no matter who makes them, is that they come in male and female threads so if you have existing spray heads, you can just replace the nozzles so you don't have to dig up the head.
     
  4. Tim in Fort Worth

    Tim in Fort Worth Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    I'm going to take your advice and start planning on upgrading to the multi-stream nozzles. It will probably be later this summer because I will need to plan out which nozzles to use to give me the same overlapping and total coverage I have now. Over the last week I went around and cleared the St. Augustine grass from around the existing heads. Over the years many of them have shifted and are now leaning, so it will probably be a project where I dig up and reposition/replace the heads at the same time. Some of them have also dropped in that time as leaves and soil have built up. But at least I now know where all the valves and heads are located. The only mystery now is the path of the plumbing and wiring, but between a sharp shooter shovel and the Greenlee wire/valve locator it's not as big of a deal as it once was.
     
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2016
  5. SteveW

    SteveW DIY Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE
    I nearly always do a little tweaking of my system each year, between changing out a head for something different or raising one or me, as they do seem to get buried after a while.

    In fact, there is a commercial head intended for golf courses which has a zerk fitting for a grease gun. When the head gets to be below grade, you just come around with a grease gun, pump it a couple times until the head's level, and move on.
     
  6. Tim in Fort Worth

    Tim in Fort Worth Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2007
    Location:
    Texas
    I like what I've seen from the Hunter MP series. The last time I was at the irrigation supply joint I picked up a Rainbird catalog, but for some reason they didn't have any multi-stream nozzles listed. But in the last few days I did discover a critical component I am missing: A tool for adjusting nozzles and holding the pop-up tube in place while working on the head. So far I've been using my hands and a screwdriver to do that, and that can be frustrating. So far I've found heads by Hunter, Toro and Orbit in the yard. I don't know if the system was designed with that mix, or it just happened over the 20 years since the system was installed and the repairmen used what was on the truck and handy. The grease method is an interesting way to adjust head levels, but I wonder where the grease goes over time. It would suck if it just bled out into the yard and eventually killed the grass.
     

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