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The last 9 posts

Tuesday, March 22nd 2011, 8:31pm

by Mitchgo

Good Job! :thumbup:

Tuesday, March 22nd 2011, 4:54pm

by CFHome

I was able to fix my device. I just took off the two bolts near Mitchgo suggested and reseated everything. There was also a sliver of plastic that I removed. Once I put everything back together there was no leak. All is good after that 5 minute stint. Much better than the $300 the original installer wanted to just replace everything. Thanks for the help.

Tuesday, March 15th 2011, 10:22am

by hi.todd

Call a local supply house and tell them what you are looking for and they will usually be able to point you to 2 or three contractors.

Let them know you don't want a parts changer if not necessary. You are looking for a good licensed backflow tester and repair tech. Most sprinkler companies don't test their devices and need to call in a backflow inspector.

Sunday, March 13th 2011, 10:59am

by (Guest)

Ok. I'll take a look at it.

Where is a good place to find a reference for a knowledgeable and reputable company to service my sprinkler system? It seems like there are hundreds of installers, but many are like the one that installed my system and just want to replace the whole valve without even having seen it to diagnose it. I just moved to the area and don't have good local references.

Saturday, March 12th 2011, 8:07pm

by Mitchgo

It really sounds like the relief vent check has been damaged.
You can take it apart and inspect ( go for the 2 bolts on the vent portion) . The seal has probably been warped from the freeze or something along those lines. A lot of times by taking it out and inspecting it you can just re-seat it and it works fine after that. You can even purchase a repair kit for the relief vent check.

However I still recommend to have at tester come in to fully diagnose and as well repair the unit.
I'm not to sure of your codes where you live, but where I live only a licensed back flow tester are able to repair and test back flow assemblies

Saturday, March 12th 2011, 4:26pm

by CFHome

Yes, the unit is leaking out the vent relief.

I did some more checking, and it seems to leak only when there is no water flow. If I open the spigot on the downstream side, the leak seems to stop. That spigot also leaks but that is a no-brainer to replace. The leak is a constant sequence of drops, a couple of drops per second. It is not a stream.

I see where I can take a few bolts out and look inside the unit. I'll try that. If I need to replace the whole thing I'll add some unions so I can just take it off in the winter. We normally don't get freezing weather that lasts more than overnight, but earlier in February we had several days of weather near 20F. The main water supply was off but perhaps there was some remaining water inside the valve and that is why I have a problem.

I have never had a sprinkler system with an exposed valve like the city of Leander requires. It seems to be a bad idea in areas that freeze. Are these valves picky? That is, if I change parts inside or install a new valve out of the box, do I need to be prepared to test and adjust things or should everything just work if I am careful with what I do?

Saturday, March 12th 2011, 1:24pm

by Wet_Boots

RPZ devices are not designed to be "winterized" simply. There's a reason that the best servicemen follow manufacturers' instructions, when caring for these things.


If I had to name one RPZ that had a chance to be winterized by only turning the proper handles in the proper manner, it would be a Conbraco.

Saturday, March 12th 2011, 1:15pm

by Mitchgo

It really depends on what's actually leaking. If it's an actual crack in the brass assembly then the unit would need to be replaced.

However you say water is just leaking out of the opening at the bottom, this is called the Vent Relief for the RPZ. If there isn't any back pressure on the device and you turn it on you will see a quick spurt of water coming out of the vent, but if it continues then there is a issue internally.

I haven't dealt with the RPZ Febco 860, but I deal and test 1000's of Double Check Febco 850's. The device is exactly the same except for the vent for the RPZ.

I would recommend to find someone who tests and repairs back flow assemblies. For us and on the 850 a single check runs for $30 + our testing fee. I personally hate the febco's design and all of the flimsy plastic internal parts.

More then likely the scenario is the vent relief valve is stuck open because the freeze damaged it. I would guess it's pretty cheap to replace the relief section to this assmebly. A tester could properly diagnose the internal issue and repair it if they had the part.

As far as winter maintence for being in texas, slap 2 unions on both sides and just take the assembly out for the winter. drain the supply side as best as you can

Saturday, March 12th 2011, 6:49am

by CFHome

Repair FEBCO 860 RPZ Backflow Prevention Device

Newbie here, so please be gentle :-)

I have a house in Leander, TX, where the landscaper installed a 1" FEBCO 860
RPZ Reverse Flow Protector. Once during a freeze last year the valve froze
and started leaking out the bottom. The landscaper replaced it, tested it, and recommended for
any future freezes to turn off the water supply. I did that and left the main water supply
off through the hard freeze we had in early February.

I recently
turned the water on and the valve is again leaking through the
opening in the bottom. The landscaper wants to replace it and charge me
$200+ for the valve plus his labor for a total $300 bill.

I have a couple of questions:

If there was some water remaining inside when the valve froze, what is likely to have broken? I don't think
it should be necessary to buy a whole new valve to fix the problem. The
main water supply was turned off but I don't know if the valve was
completely drained. I can buy various repair kits and replace parts. Ideally I'd find another contractor that can do more than just throw away the whole valve.

If I have to replace the whole assembly. can I just take off the old valve and install a new one or do I also need additional test equipment, such as differential pressure meters? I am capable of mounting a new valve but I don't have
any specialized tools. Should the valve work without adjustments
straight out of the box?

3.) Is there any special procedure needed to turn on the valve so it doesn't leak? The valve itself was on (both input and output valves on) when I just turned on the main supply going to it.