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The last 10 posts

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Tuesday, July 23rd 2013, 10:27pm

by Dan123 (Guest)

Hello again.

I finished the first 3 zones in the front year and everything is working great thanks to all your advice here.
Now I need to do about 6 more zones in the back yard, and I have a couple questions.

In the front yard, I have (6) R-VAN 1724 heads in one zone (set at 180 deg or slightly higher), with 1" pipe from the valve and I bought the pressure gauge adapter to screw on the head. The pressure at each sprinkler is 35psi. They seem to be working great at that pressure (although the radius distance is less than advertized by Rainbird); I want to install more heads on each of the other zones so I have a few questions.

1) is 35 or 30 psi acceptable for these rotary nozzles?
2) Would I benefit any to increase to 1.25" pipe? How much would it help?
3) The front year goes uphill, and the backyard downhill, will that help?
4) I want to install a mix of Hunter MP3500 and MP3000 sprinklers, I tested some out and they actually do what their specs sheet says any opinions on these?
5) I was using
[font=&quot]1804-SAM-P45 pop ups, could these be making my pressure worse? Is there something better for low pressure systems?



Sunday, June 9th 2013, 9:47pm

by Wet_Boots

You may find that feeding a sprinkler system through a whole-house cartridge filter will get expensive. In any event, you'll keep an eye on the pressure gauge, so you'll know when to reload the filter.

Six-feet-plus is probably higher than any pro would set a PVB, but as long as you can maintain it, even with needing a stepstool to stand on, you can do it.

Sunday, June 9th 2013, 9:07pm

by Dan123 (Guest)

took some more measurements after dark with a laser and the PVB will be 6'6" above ground, will that be ok,?

Sunday, June 9th 2013, 8:24pm

by Dan123 (Guest)

Been doing some research on filters, and the Big Blue whole house filter that I have next to my well, has a 30 micron filter. So I assume the filter you recommended with the 100 mesh (152 micron) would not be needed? since nothing smaller than 30 microns should ever reach it?

Sunday, June 9th 2013, 12:01pm

by Wet_Boots

About any sprinkler system items in basements - avoid them - anything that gets opened will dump water, so let it dump outside.

The strainer is one item you might do best to oversize, if you have sand concerns. In fact, some strainers get "doubled" with two in series with each other, with the first one of the series having a coarser screen, so that each strainer catches about half of the particles. Read the performance charts of the strainers. So, make that strainer a VFNT150-100SSP.

Pipe size. Nothing is known to us what the property dimensions are, so what pressure losses you have in one-inch pipe versus inch-and-a-quarter is equally unknown. Note that pipe size is just about pipe. Valves and backflow preventers and strainers are sized according to their own concerns. You do need to size pipe in order to avoid needless pressure losses.

PVBs and above-ground plumbing next to the house. Do you have central air conditioning? Think the outdoor part of that system is beautiful? It is not. Got a gas meter outside? Think it's beautiful? Got an electric meter? Face it, most modern homes come with necessary bits of ugliness next to them. It isn't too difficult to locate sprinkler system plumbing in the midst of that uglyville, without lowering real estate values. So a PVB that's four foot high? No biggie. In any event, the sand strainers need to be a few feet above grade, because the screen covers drop down from them for access.

Master valve. It gets located downstream of the backflow preventer, usually right next to the house.

System pressure is going to be a concern. Even with a PVB, you will lose at least 10 psi from the indoor pressure tank, before the water sees a sprinkler head. An RPZ could double that loss. And the strainers add their own pressure losses, as their screens trap particles. The simple way to accomodate to these pressure losses is to bump up the cut-off pressure. (the most popular Square-D pressure switch has a nut to tighten for raising the cut-off pressure, without changing the cut-in pressure)

In general, I would recommend considering standard rotors and sprays for a system fed from well water, because the sand tolerance of the modern rotating nozzles is a possible concern. Also, standard equipment needs less pressure, so you avoid tinkering with the pressure switch.

Sunday, June 9th 2013, 10:26am

by Dan123 (Guest)

Thanks for the quick reply!

1) I will purchase a: Vu-Flow VFNT100-100SSP 1 in. 100 Mesh T-Style Stainless Steel Filter,can this be placed in the basement?
2) I selected the RPZ's because my lot is sloping upward from the house, if a PVB has to be 12" higher than the highest sprinkler head, then the PVB would be about 4 feet off the ground, and would look terrible. But if I'm going to lose 10 PSI I have other options, can the PVB be mounted inside an attached garage?
3) I wanted to put the master valve in the basement so I could run sch 40 or 80 pvc pipe out to the valve boxes, and not worry about it being pressurized all the time, if this is a bad idea, I will put the MV in the box with the other valves.


Sunday, June 9th 2013, 8:23am

by Wet_Boots

RE: New installation at my house

Thanks in advance for looking over my questions, and any answers/advice would be greatly appreciated!!!
I already started purchasing parts, but have not started the install yet, and I want to make sure I do this right the first time.
I have a well that produces 15GPM+ and the PSI settings are 50 to 60, when the pump is running, and I'm using 15GPM its pretty steady at 58 PSI on the well tank, there is a 1.25" pipe ran from the well to my house plumbing and it T's off a 1" to all my house items, the other end of this T will be for the irrigation system.

Here is my plan so far, please let me know if anything is wrong, or you have better suggestions...
A) I want to install a 100-PESB for my mater valve, along with a Flow-Clik for added protection, these will be in the basement.
B) I plan on installing 2, in-ground valve boxes, one on each end of the house, each one will have a Febco 860 RPZ inside the box, along with 1" manifolds and 4x 1" HV valves.
C) I plan on using 1" poly for all underground sprinkler piping.
D) I plan on using R-van/P45 combos for all the sprinklers.

Now my questions:
1) Is it ok to install the RPZ's inside the in-ground boxes? Or would it be better in the basement? I heard they can spray water during normal operation?
2) Is it ok to run 1" pipe to my master valve? or should I run 1.25" (size supplied from well) and get a 1.5" master valve with reducers, is the master valve ok in the basement?
3) I have charts for the R-Van nozzles, and using the GPM at 45PSI what is the maximum GPM you recommend that I try and use?
4) Since I live in Wisconsin, I'd like to make this system self draining, how many drains should I put in each run? I also plan on blowing it out each season. What depth should I bury this at?
5) Since I have a well, there is some sand in the water, but right next to the well I installed a whole house 30 micron sediment filter, and I have never noticed any sand in my house water, but the filter definitely has a lot of sand in it when I replace it, do I need any additional filtering?
- so much is very wrong with this plan -

The only component that needs to be in the basement is a shut-off valve. From there, the plumbing proceeds through the foundation wall, above grade, as high as you can, up to four feet above grade. The next thing in the supply is the strainer, with a 100 mesh stainless steel screen. Then comes the RPZ. They have to be mounted above grade.

And note that the RPZ is used only if there is specific need for it. If the backflow assembly can be located a foot above the highest head in the system, then you employ a Pressure Vacuum Breaker. That saves you about 10 psi that you will need, so long as your pump pressure switch settings are as you described. It also saves you tremendous maintenance grief, as RPZs hate water with sand in it.

The size of the mainline does not have to match the size of the zone valves. 15 gpm is squarely in the operating range of one-inch valves. That flow is enough to lose pressure through any long run of one-inch pipe, so using inch-and-a-quarter will preserve pressure on long runs.

Forget self-draining completely. Buy an air compressor.


No specific opinions on equipment choices, as I don't use what you chose. A flow meter is far less important than having zone valves with flow controls, along with a master valve.