Zone Question

Discussion in 'Irrigation / Sprinkler Forum' started by ml_homeboy, Aug 31, 2008.

  1. ml_homeboy

    ml_homeboy New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    Hi All,

    Quick Question:

    Zone Valve 1 - Front Yard
    Zone Valve 2 - Back Yard

    Is it possible to wire the two valves to a four zone timer so I can water each zone individually and have a 3rd zone on the timer that would activate both of them?
     
  2. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    The timer is not intended to feed two solenoids at the same time. You might have fuse or circuit breaker issues. Also, the whole purpose of zones is because usually your water supply volume is not adequate to run more than one zone at a time.

    You can have multiple start times on each zone. What is the idea that you want to run both zones at once?
     
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  4. ml_homeboy

    ml_homeboy New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    I installed the whole system myself including driving the well. The well can more then handle both zones on at the same time and I prefer it that way as I can water the whole yard at once every morning.

    I was just wondering if anyone new of a trick I was missing in wiring the valves. The timer has been enabling both valves at once for some time now without any issues.
     
  5. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots Sprinkler Guy

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2007
    Location:
    Metro NYC
    Buy an expensive controller that can be programmed to run more than one zone at a time. Several times the cost of the ordinary controllers.
     
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    timer

    Most timers cannot correlate conflicts between zones so if you program both to operate at the same time it will happen. You cannot hook both zones to a single terminal for simultaneous operation and then try to run each separately using different terminals, however. Most timers can handle two valves simultaneously.
     
  7. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    I would bet that you can.
     
  8. teamo

    teamo Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2005
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    I can't see any advantage to running them both at once. If you are going to run them all of the time like that then why not eliminate one of the valves and just pipe the two zones together.
     
  9. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots Sprinkler Guy

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2007
    Location:
    Metro NYC
    This is not true. Controllers use their processor logic to "stack" starting times, so that only one zone is operating at any one time. The reason for this is that you get to use a smaller, cheaper power transformer, if you don't run zones simultaneously.

    Amp up your spending, and you can get a controller that can overlap programs.
    And it is programs we are talking about, and not zones. You never "start a zone" - you assign one or more zones to a program, and then you set a starting time for the program.

    So for the extra hundred or so, the OP can devise a schedule of programs that can run his zones simultaneously. Or not.
     
  10. ml_homeboy

    ml_homeboy New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2008
    Thank you all for your responses!

    I will look into a more expensive timer that will provide me the functionality.

    :)
     
  11. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots Sprinkler Guy

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2007
    Location:
    Metro NYC
    You can look at a Toro Custom Command controller.
     
  12. maintenanceguy

    maintenanceguy In the Trades

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2008
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    I've done this. Athletic fields with 32 zones. Needed to wet down one field for about 5 minutes before game time to control dust and it required that 2 zones come on at once.

    I used a small 24V cube relay. A relay is a switch that can be closed electronically.

    In your example, zone 1 would run only zone 1. Zone 2 would run only zone 2.

    But zone 3 would be wired to both turn on zone 1 AND to close the relay which would connect the wire for zone 1 to the wire for zone 2. So when zone 3 is activated, both zone 1 and zone 2 run but when zone 3 is not activiated, the two zones are isolated by the relay.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2008
  13. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    you are on

    I would bet that you can.

    Not if both valves are wired to a single terminal and also to individual ones. When the single zone activates it would also backfeed to the merged wiring and from there to the second valve.
     
  14. Alectrician

    Alectrician DIY Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    Oh yeah.......I didn't quite think that one all the way thru. You would need a relay in there that would disconnect #2 when #1 came on and #1 when #2 came on.
     
  15. msgale

    msgale Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2006
    Location:
    Ohio
    no it wouldnt, you could wire the relay to kep them separated

    controller screw zone #1 wired directly to valve #1
    controller screw zone 2, to valve #2

    so far, zones 1 and 2 work normally


    a single throw single pole relay :
    connect zone 3 controller screw to one pole of the relay, and the same relay pole is wired to zone 1.

    then the other relay pole goes to zone 2.
    then, 1 and 2 are only connnected when relay is on,
     
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