How do I turn on a Sprinkler Pump

Discussion in 'Irrigation / Sprinkler Forum' started by HappyLaker, Mar 16, 2021.

  1. HappyLaker

    HappyLaker New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2021
    Location:
    Manitoba Canada
    I am planning a underground sprinkler system at the cabin. Pump is a 1 1/2hp Red Lion 2" intake, 1 1/2" out. I planning to have a wifi controller in the cabin and run the low voltage wires to the manifold with the zone valves. I wasn't planning on a pressure tank and was thinking of using a Rainbird pump start relay type switch close to the pump to turn it on when the controller turns on a zone.. Now on the outlet pipe coming from the pump to the zone manifold I was going to put a tee in and connect a garden hose to that. When we want to use the garden hose how do I turn on the pump?

    Would it be better to incorporate a pressure tank and a pressure switch on the pump rather than using the pump relay start box?
     
  2. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Without a pressure tank/pressure switch you can run any of the zoned sprinklers. However, to have the pump come on when you open a faucet requires a pressure tank/pressure switch, and I don't think that pump even builds enough pressure to work with a pressure switch. You can set up a zone with a garden hose and turn it on with your controller. You need to be careful with a pump start relay on a low head pump like this. If the pump comes on and no zone opens up the pump will melt down in a few minutes. Normally I would use a pressure relief valve to prevent melting the pump, but those sprinkler type pump usually don't build enough pressure for even a pressure relief to work. Using a pressure tank/pressure switch or to just have a pressure relief that works you need a jet pump instead of a sprinkler pump.
     
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  4. HappyLaker

    HappyLaker New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2021
    Location:
    Manitoba Canada
    Thank you for to information. The sprinkler pump i was thinking of using was a red lion 2hp which produces 47 gpm@5'. I was reading I have to be carful that with a pressure tank the pump does cycle too quickly so it doesn't wear out as fast.

    3 rainbirds heads per zone needs 3.1-3.8 gpm, so I'm thinking I need 12 gpm? Is this correct?

    What size of pressure tank and what size of pump would you recommend?

    Thanks
     
  5. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Sure that pump will produce 47 GPM at 40 PSI. But it only builds 49 PSI max. With 5' of lift that would only be 47 PSI max. It will not work with a 30/50 pressure switch, so a pressure tank is not possible. It would work with a 20/40 pressure switch, but you would only get 30 PSI average. Also you would need to make sure every sprinkler zone was larger than 47 GPM, or the pump would cycle itself to death. Best to use a pump start relay with these type pumps, not a pressure tank. And even then you need to worry about deadheading the pump if the sprinklers fail to pop up. 47 PSI max is not enough to use a 50 PSI pressure relief valve, so there is very little way of protecting these type pumps from running against a deadhead.

    Pump start relays are notorious for turning the pump on, but the gophers chew the sprinkler wires so they don't pop up, and the pump melts down in a few minutes.
     
  6. HappyLaker

    HappyLaker New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2021
    Location:
    Manitoba Canada
    Fabulous info thanks. Sounds like I will go with a jet and a pressure tank. 30/50 with a 50psi relief valve. As far tanks...... big the better?? What you say is the ideal size. Thanks again
     
  7. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Lol! Happy to meet you. I am the inventor of Cycle Stop Valves, which are made to replace big tanks. So my suggestion is a jet pump with a PK1A kit to control it. The kit has a pressure relief valve as well as everything else you need to control the pump. But you are talking about a much smaller flow rate now? Even a J15S pump with a PK1A will only put out about 25 GPM at 50 PSI. If you need more than 25 GPM you just need a larger pump and a larger Cycle Stop Valve kit.



    Jet pump and PK1A.jpeg
     
  8. HappyLaker

    HappyLaker New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2021
    Location:
    Manitoba Canada
    Very easy to understand. Ill pm you
     
  9. HappyLaker

    HappyLaker New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2021
    Location:
    Manitoba Canada
    First off thanks Cary so for all your help. Not too many responding to my queries.

    I ran through your video twice and 100% makes sense to me. It seems in essence that the cycle stop will reduce the number of times the pump cycles correct? I should be worried how long pump runs but the # of times it cycles?

    It sounds like your control valve is really the perfect thing to incorporate. It seems like a very simple concept but very effective.

    This set up is only for a lake pump to supply water for an underground lawn irrigation. I was also planning to have a garden spigot for a garden hose. SO just to review... lake water is <12 lower than pump and I was going to position pump 70-75' from waters edge. If I use 3 rainbirds that use 3-4 gallons that would translate to approx 12 gpm per zone. As long as I buy a pump that will produce at least approx 15 gpm @12 feet elevation, (taking into consideration friction loss) I should be pretty good. Ad if I went 4 rainbirds that would be 16gpm and essentially I would just need a bit larger pump? Am I on the right track?

    Question, now about your product, according to the video the size of tank isn't that much off on issue as your valve balances the flow of water out of the tank?

    I live in Canada but I would like to buy and try one of your valves. No sense buying the kit with the tank, as it would only cost more to ship. Do I purchase directly from you? You indicate you can preset the valve pressure for me anywhere from 15 psi to 150 psi! I assume it should be the maximum that these sprinkler heads will allow?

    You don't know how much time I have spent reading and talk with local shops here (which I may add hasn't been extremely helpful). Your posts to me have been great,.... and I am excited to try your valve. I have been concerned about the on/off cycles but this will solve that. Now I assume I just have to purchase a pump that will give me that 15-20gpm.

    What size of tank should I look for. (Sounds like size of tank is now more irrelevant with your valve??)
    Thank You
     
  10. valveman

    valveman Cary Austin Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2006
    Occupation:
    Pump Controls Technician
    Location:
    Lubbock, Texas
    Right it is the cycling on and off that destroys pumps. Pumps are made to run 24/7/365 and I have one that hasn't turned off in nearly 19 years so far. The closer to the waters edge for the pump the better. Using HJ's quote, you can pump water to the moon, but you can only suck water up 24' at most. You could also use a submersible in the lake instead of a jet pump.

    To barely get 16 GPM at 50 PSI you will need a jet pump like a J10S in 1HP. The J15S is 1.5HP and would give you up to 25 GPM at 50 PSI, and the CSV would let it work down to as little as 1 GPM without hurting anything. Always better to have a pump slightly larger than you need than smaller than you need.

    The CSV make the pump deliver from 1 to 25 GPM, matching the amount of water you are using. Water is going right past the tank, so the size of the tank is a moot point. The 4.5 or 10 gallon tank is plenty. No reason to go any larger.

    Every country in the world, including Canada, puts import fees and restrictions on products coming from the US. This makes products from the US much more expensive and hard to get. I don't know why the US puts up with such unfair trade practices? Anyway, we know the problems with trying to get US products in Canada. We make the PK1ALT, which the LT means less tank. This is so you can have everything you need in the kit except the tank, which makes shipping and custom fees much less for you. Then all you need is to purchase a 4.5 or 10 gallon tank locally to have the complete pump control package.
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2021
  11. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2013
    Location:
    IL
    If just that, and if your sprinklers take enough water, you can turn the pump on and off with a manual switch, and have no pressure tank. You would need a pressure relief valve, however. That does not give you the convenience of opening and closing spigots/valves to start the pump.
     
  12. LLigetfa

    LLigetfa DIYer, not in the trades

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    Occupation:
    Semi-Retired
    Location:
    NW Ontario, Canada
    That would be my suggestion. A sub is roughly double the efficiency, the motor is water cooled, and it never needs priming.
     
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