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The last 10 posts

Thursday, September 22nd 2011, 2:32pm

by HooKooDooKu

You shouldn't need a pressure guage to determine if you have a Pressure Regulator in your house or not. You should be able to determine that visually.

Most likely, you've got a meter at the curb and a single water line comming into the house somewhere underground (either in a basement or crawl space, unless this is a slab home). Once the water line enters the house, there is likely a Tee that feeds a hose bibb (the one I mentioned that comes before the regulator). The water main should then pass through something that looks like this PRV. After the PRV, there should be another Tee that feeds the hot water tank. From there, the rest of the water main and the hot water tank exit pipe should feed all the branches to the house.

Now it's not a bad idea to get a pressure guage. They are <$10, and you can check that your PRV is properly set to about 50psi. The set-screw on the top of the PRV is what allows the pressure to be adjusted. The setting from the factory is usually 50psi.

Thursday, September 22nd 2011, 9:34am

by Simon

Thanks for all your responses. Much appreciated.

The leak was eventually stopped by the city in the early afternoon. The guy estimated about 1.5 gallons per minute lost. The sprinkler folks turned up late afternoon and replaced some pvc piping and I think the check valve on the supply side of the backflow preventer with copper or brass. Would have been nice if they had at least come round and stopped the leaking at 7:00 am when they were first notified.

I got no decent explanation as to why this leak happened, so I am still not convinced that we wont get yet another. I'll follow up and see if I get a response.

I'll also go to home depot and pick up one of those pressure testers and check it on the cold water from the washer and see what it is in the house. If it is really high then I assume there is no regulator anywhere and we will need to get one.

Also on the reverberation, are their any simple products that can deaden the noise, such as pipe lagging. We have about 20ft of the main line exposed under the house so this would be easy to add without needing a plumber.

Thursday, September 22nd 2011, 6:23am

by Mitchgo

They should have included the PRV with the install at 120 psi..

The next step is to get a PRV in to see if this will reduce the noise.

Wednesday, September 21st 2011, 8:39pm

by hi.todd

In Texas, it is state law that you be given an irrigation design upon completion of the system installation. You may ask for one.

It is the law and it should not be that hard to get an as built diagram of what happened. You are also supposed to have a material list. I now we haven't had rain, but I hope you got a rain sensor it is required, by state law too.

Check out the TCEQ website and look at the laws covering irrigation. The Backflow should have been inspected upon completion also.

Good Luck :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

Wednesday, September 21st 2011, 5:36pm

by Wet_Boots

With 120 psi, I expect that you already have a PRV in the house plumbing. Meter noise can resonate through the house, without ever causing physical harm. Can you access the meter when a zone is running, and give it a listen?

Wednesday, September 21st 2011, 5:35pm

by HooKooDooKu

With a 120psi static pressure, you better already have a pressure regulator for the house plumbing. Typical household plumbing fixtures are only designed for around 50psi max. Most likely, there is a pressure regulator inside the house just after the water line enters. Usually, a house will have two outside hose bibbs. One bibb will be fed from the water line BEFORE the regulator, and the other will be fed from the water line AFTER the regulator.

If the irrigation regulator is installed after the master valve, then it sounds like it is the PVC kind that are NOT designed for constant pressure. The backflow preventer is most likely brass (so 120psi shouldn't be a problem there). So the only high pressure component question would be the master valve. It likely is NOT brass. Is it designed to handle 120psi?

Properly installed PVC pipe should be able to withstand 120psi. So if you are getting breaks in the system, your installer didn't take his time to do the job right. I'll admit that I only have 80psi at my house, but of the hundred+ PVC joins I put together for my DIY irrigation system, not a single PVC weld joint has failed or leaked.

Do your control valves have flow control on them? If so, can you attempt to adjust the settings and see if that makes a difference?

Wednesday, September 21st 2011, 2:31pm

by Simon

Thanks for your response.

The vibration can be felt in the pipes on the back of the toilet in the house where it is loudest. It is this that I am concerned about eventually breaking. This is unlikley the source of the noise as the water in the house pipes cannot be moving as a check valve was installed. It is likely IMO to be coming from the area where the problems have been and reverberating in the house and seeming louder there. There is no noticeable vibration/banging in the lawn when the system is running though, nor is it audible from outside the house.

We are in Texas, which just had its hottest summer :-)

The connection point and check valve are buried and is what seems to be leaking this time. I'll ask them what type of valve and backflow preventer it is and check the max pressure ratings.

Also should a pressure regulator be installed before the connection to the sprinklers and cover both house and sprinkler system or after covering just the sprinkler system?

Wednesday, September 21st 2011, 1:28pm

by Wet_Boots

The thread you linked is an example of confused terminology - What was called "banging" was actually a noisy water meter. Actual "banging" that is specific to sprinkler systems is a force you can feel through your feet as it resonates through the ground.

With a 120 psi supply pressure, you are getting close to the operating limits of conventional zone valves. It would probably have been best to have installed a separate brass pressure reducer right at the connection point of the system.

Some of this varies according to location (and yours is?) ~ maybe take a few photos of the work (connection point, backflow preventer, master valve, added check valve, water meter)

Wednesday, September 21st 2011, 11:34am

by Simon

They did but it is after the location of the two leaks.

From what I understand the system looks something like:

meter --> split to house (2) --> back flow preventer --> (1) main shutoff solenoid --> regulator --> rest of system

Leaks have occurred at point 1, and I assume point 2. After split to house there is a check valve on the branch that goes to the house.

I do not actually have a plan of the system, so up to the back flow preventer is an assumption because it is buried and wasn't installed by me.

Wednesday, September 21st 2011, 11:00am

by HooKooDooKu

RE: System keeps leaking and banging

...A final important piece of information is that we have very high water pressure. ~120 psi I believe...

Did the irrigation company install a pressure regulator? If you have a static pressure at the meter greater than about 80psi, a regulator is just about required.