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Saturday, May 25th 2013, 7:54pm

Hunter Vs Rainbird Spray Heads

I am looking to replace my old spray heads with new hunter or rainbird spray heads to improve the efficiency of my system (the current spray heads like to spray the side walk or doesn't cover the area completely). Is the Rainbird 1804-PRS-SAM equal in performance and quality as the Hunter PRS30? Is the pressure regulating feature of the Hunter PRS30 worth the extra cost? I don't have any spray heads that are low elevation (most of them are flat) and I don't have any spray heads that are in the same zone as my rotors. I thought about getting the Hunter Pro-Spray, but am considering the spend the extra money for a better product.
I currently have Rainbird Weatherseries sprayheads which are okay, but a lot of them are sticking up after watering and they are not adjustable.


Active Member

Posts: 46

Location: Kansas City


Monday, May 27th 2013, 2:01pm

First and foremost, you are not comparing equal heads. The Rainbird PRS-SAM model has more features than the Hunter PRS30. The Rainbird head has both pressure regulation and a gasket that stops flow when the head drops. Rainbird makes a 1804 w/ PRS only, which is very comparable to the Hunter PRS head. Both heads regulate the pressure at the head, rather than installing pressure control for the whole zone. If cost is a factor, I've found that Rainbird is a bit cheaper than the Hunter heads. I've used both, depending on what the customer originally had in the ground, and have found that both perform very well. If I'm installing new heads, I use the Rainbird 1804's because that is what I like.

The SAM feature is used when you have a down hill run of pipe and want to stop heads from weeping out water when the zone is shut off. The easiest way to tell if you should consider a SAM head is to run the zone, shut it off, and look at the lowest heads in the zone. If they are weeping water and you don't want them to, install SAM heads, otherwise you can stick with either a PRS model or a basic spray.

There are a couple of reasons I will install a PRS head over a regular 4" pop up spray head. The biggest two are if I'm installing MP Rotators or if I have a shortage of water for the system and need to control the flow to an exact number. It appears that you have issues with coverage and the PRS will help that in a round about way. You will supply the heads with only the flow they need to reach the distance the nozzle charts state. Make sure you are reading the correct line and purchase the proper nozzles for the distance you need to cover. When doing that, remember, the minimum distance you want to spray is equal to the distance between the heads.


Monday, May 27th 2013, 3:58pm

Thanks Scott,

This information is very helpful for me. Based on your info below, I think I'm going to go with the Rainbird spray head and the 1804-PRS model. I'm 90% sure I don't need the SAM model so I can save $0.30/spray body by just buying the regular PRS model. But I will double check and make sure I don't need it before buying the spray heads.

I think that the Rainbird 1804-PRS combined with the Hunter I20 rotor will complete my sprinkler system. It will definitely be better than the heads you can buy at Home Depot and Lowes.

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