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andersa
03-28-2007, 10:21 PM
Hello experts,

I have a couple of issues with my residential sprinkler system. I have a couple of ideas of how to remedy those issues, but I would like to run them by you before I attempt to implement them and possibly waist money and well, perhaps make things worse.

The first issue I have is with noise. No, not water hammer, but just the noise from the water running through the copper pipes in the basement. Although our bedrooms are on the 2nd story, as soon as the sprinkler system starts in the morning, I wake up from the noise. After finding and reading www.irrigationtutorials.com last year when I was researching drip irrigation, I have concluded that the noise is all related to the velocity of the water running through the copper pipes and my thinking is that if I reduce the velocity I also reduce the noise.

Let me first describe my current setup;

1” copper pipe enters through the basement floor, followed by a pressure reducer, followed by a 5/8” water meter and then 35’ of ¾” copper to the outside, where a Wilkins 720a ¾” PVB is mounted 4’ of ¾” to copper below ground, into 6’ of 1” PVC to the manifold and valve box.

Now, the system is under dimensioned. I found out using the bucket filling exercise, that I have roughly 10 GPM and 95 PSI (well, I found out the PSI by using a pressure gauge). But most stations exceed 10 GPM. I have for example a station with 7 PGP heads with the #5 nozzle => 14 GPM. To make matters worse, two heads do 360, 1 head does 90, and the rest do 180. Or at least the used to have the #5, I have messed with it since I discovered this, i.e., I have replaced nozzles and tried to balance the water use a bit, but needless to say, the grass is still not green! The rest of the system is not much better…

So, on to my first question re the noise;
As I am in the process of finishing the basement, my window of opportunity for fixing things in the basement is coming to an end. First, I was thinking that to reduce the racket in the basement, I should replace the ¾” copper, from the water meter to the outside PVB with a 1 ½” copper line. But since copper is expensive, I figured a more cost effective solution would be to simply add a second ¾” copper line in parallel from i.e. the water meter to the outdoor PVB. The sum would be of course not be the equivalent of a 1 ½” pipe, (I am assuming, since the square area of 2 x ¾” is 0.88 sqin, vs. 1.76 sqin for the 1 ½”) but would at least hopefully cut the water velocity in half and thus cut down on the noise. Of course, there are now two sources of noise though, i.e. two pipes, so is my theory correct that the noise generated from the water velocity would be reduced, or will it be even noisier?
Second part of this question is what to do at the end of the parallel lines if I go this route; i.e., should I simply merge them into the a single ¾” copper pipe before leaving the house and allow me to reuse the existing PVB, or should I perhaps join them into a 1 ¼” pipe (1 ¼” because it is slightly larger square – 1.23 than 2 x ¾”) just before leaving the house and upgrade the PVB to a 1 ¼” on the outside, just to make sure that no or at little noisy ¾” pipe/equipment is being part of the system, in case the PVB adds to the noise? I have a feeling it does, but I have no proof. Since large dimension PVBs are fairly expensive, at least the few I have found on the net so far, I really like some expert advice on this. I’m also thinking of upgrading the water meter to a 1” version, just to be on the safe side of noise reduction, as well as hopefully getting some much needed extra capacity.

OK, so I know that I have to fix the capacity issue too and that bringing down the flow to 10 GPM would probably benefit my noise issue somewhat, and trust me, I am going to address it, by adding stations and re-organizing stuff. The question I have with respect to this is; how do I pull lines over a lot that pretty much is a spider web of poly lines already? I know when trenching there isn’t much option but keep going and cutting the poly when it happens. After installing an 80’ straight drain pipe in the backyard a couple of years ago, I cut the sprinkler poly lines no less than 7 times. In order to add a couple of stations I would have to cross a lot more and possibly cut a lot more lines. How safe is it, i.e. will I even notice, that I cut a line when pulling?

So why am I not simply calling in the pros and have them deal with it? Well, after installing the drip last year, I have to say that I kind of enjoy the work. I’m behind a desk all day long and being out in the sun messing with the sprinkler system is great fun to me. I’ll have a plumber friend do the copper work though; I don’t want to risk a leak in the basement because of my lack of soldering skills. But I don’t want the sprinkler company that installed the system touch it again, I mean, they screwed it up big time to begin with! A second sprinkler company that a neighbor brought in to winterize all systems on the street didn’t keep the PVB open over winter so that was busted the following spring. 2 for 2 so far unfortunately.

bicmudpuppy
03-29-2007, 12:39 AM
I would shoot for reducing your output first. That could be a 2" copper supply line to the PVB and you might still hear the noise you are hearing. If all the heads were #5's.........what kind of spacing are we dealing with? #2 corners and #3 halfs and leave the fulls at #5 might drop your output to a more reasonable level. Also, a PRV after the sprinkler tap for the rest of the house might help your noise and you household plumbing. Was the 95 psi an operating number? Even if it was static, I like house plumbing to be closer to 60psi. Your o-rings and seals will last much longer. A gut feeling suggests we are missing some info as well. Any chance there is a valve the water is passing through that is not fully open? Best of luck to you!

Flow Control
03-29-2007, 03:03 AM
My attention span is not to long, so you lost me after a bit. Great research, so kudos for gaining knowledge in the area. Does the noise sound like a clicking noise or similar?

Flow Control
03-29-2007, 03:49 AM
Is the noise constant during the entire run time

DanaMac
03-29-2007, 08:35 AM
East fix - set it to run after you leave for work!!! You'll never hear it again.

I've got skills baby!!!!!!!!!!

SprinklerGuy
03-29-2007, 09:08 AM
LOL....keen observation for the obvious.

Wear earplugs to bed like I do....

Wet_Boots
03-29-2007, 09:56 AM
I remember neighbors of customers with brass impact heads sometimes calling the police to file noise complaints about nighttime watering.

londonrain
03-29-2007, 12:14 PM
5/8" meter at 95psi should be flowing in the 20-25pgm range. If you did a flow test on a faucet with a 1/4" opening then I could see 10gpm....

SprinklerGuy
03-29-2007, 01:29 PM
Some spigots restrict the flow tremendously...and when the flow is reduced and restricted.....and the velocity is high....it is LOUD.

andersa
03-29-2007, 03:27 PM
Ha ha, some great advice here. I know I have gotten to the right place for these questions. But seriously, what fun is it to not fix problems like this and only do the watering during daytime or sleep with earplugs? But I do appreciate the suggestions; especially since the latter would also let me sleep through kids requiring attention during the night :)

bicmudpuppy:

95 PSI is the static pressure. It may be a little high. The utility recently upped the pressure, since this is part of town is growing. The water main in the street serving my house was recently extended into a brand new adjacent neighborhood, where they are currently in the process of building 350 town homes. So I suspect that my pressure will go down once the people start moving in there.

Head spacing seems to be an issue, I think the heads are too far apart and not enough head to head action. I think there may be about 30' feet between the heads but I have to double check when I get home tonight.

I have currently 7 stations, 6 for the lawn and one for the drip. The 6 lawn valves, all Hunter PGVs, all seem to behave the same, i.e. I can't tell that one station is noisier than another. Hopefully all of them aren't stuck.
I think I can fix the station in my example by splitting it into two stations. About three heads are right next to the flowerbed holding the valve box, so limited digging and no tearing up the grass, i.e. I can run the poly in the flowerbed to those heads.


ICS:

Yes, the noise is the same for the duration of each station. I have for example a station with 4 rotor head with #5 nozzle that is less noisy. There may be a slight clicking or ticking sound, hard to describe. I have always thought it was from the PVB, as my previous house did not have a PVB and there the sprinkler didn't generate that ticking sound. Although in that house – a ranch – the racket from running the sprinkler was even worse and I did run it after going to work, couldn't even take a shower while the sprinkler was running.

Wet Boots:

Outside the system is very quiet, no complaints there from me or the neighbors.

Londonrain/sprinklerguy:

Good point. I did do the bucket test from the hose faucet (w/o a hose). It is right next to the PVB, but not on the same ¾" copper pipe as the PVB, so there is obviously a great risk for variation here between the faucet and the actual sprinkler system. There is no faucet on the sprinkler line itself, although I would add one if I did all those changes I have mentioned.

Now, and I have to quote Mr. Stryker, as his site is the only source I know of. http://www.irrigationtutorials.com/sprinkler03.htm, lists max GPM for ¾" Copper to 11 GPM. I should really try to increase the copper dimension, reduce the GPM usage or do both (what I was planning to some degree), no?

It is interesting to note that nobody believes that an increase in copper dimension will reduce the noise, at least not to a level that will make me happy. I am grateful for the advice given. For a while I was contemplating whether perhaps PEX would be a more quiet solution, and I was thinking that I should replace the copper with that, but it seems to be more of a hassle and also seems to be more susceptible to leaks. Leaks in the basement I can live without.

Flow Control
03-29-2007, 03:42 PM
Sometimes people are trying so hard to troubleshoot something they might overlook something right in front of them.

To me is seems like you are describing the following problem. you have a 1" service line with decent pressure being choked down through a 5/8" meter. It sounds to me like your meter is screaming from the flow & pressure sent through it or it could just be a noisey meter. Now to test this theory is free and takes just a few minutes. Simply remove the meter and install a piece of pipe in its place and run the system. If the noise goes away them upgrade to a 1" meter or atleast request a new 5/8" and complain about the noise. If I am wrong then you can concentrate on the other avenues with just wasting a few minutes of your time.

If your zones are over nozzled then you should take care of that no matter what.

Wet_Boots
03-29-2007, 06:24 PM
Have the town replace the noisy meter. Do that first. There is just a chance that will fix things. The 3/4 copper is undersized for 14 gpm, when you look at a 35 foot run, but that shows up as water hammer when a zone shuts off. If heads are 30 feet apart, and the static pressure is 95 psi, then there's a lot of wiggle room to try smaller nozzles, and run the zones longer.

Mike Leary
03-29-2007, 06:44 PM
My attention time is limited also, but out here, I've NEVER heard of a noisy
meter unless the P.U.D is flushing lines & air gets in. What our friend is hearing is normal given the small size of the supply line & the demand of
the zones....I'm siding w/leaky boots & suggesting he downsize the demand.

Wet_Boots
03-29-2007, 07:10 PM
It's possible for some meters to show noise, kind of like a bad bearing. I've also had one or two almost howl (chattering plastic turbine) when a zone started up, and the water surged through the meter.

Flow Control
03-29-2007, 07:25 PM
Not sure on the qty of your installs but we see on the average of 3-4 a season.

Mike Leary
03-29-2007, 07:40 PM
Noisy water meters?

andersa
03-29-2007, 08:02 PM
OK, sounds good. I'll call the utility tomorrow AM and ask them to replace the noisy water meter. Is it usually much more expensive to have a 1" installed or is it something I can convince them that I need? I don't see the harm in getting rid of the the 5/8" once and for all.

I went out and measured the distance between a few heads. Seemed to avg. between 31 - 33 ft.

I guess I will have to downgrade the nozzles in a couple of the harder to reach stations (i.e. around the house) and have them run longer and then split the two stations I have easy access to, i.e. are near the flower bed with the valve box.

Mike Leary
03-29-2007, 08:05 PM
In our area...a 1" meter is verrrrrrrrrrry pricey!!!!

andersa
03-29-2007, 08:08 PM
As a one time fee or a monthly fee or perhaps both?

londonrain
03-29-2007, 08:53 PM
Each water system will have different pricing. A 1" meter should be more on the initial installation and the monthly fee vs a 5/8" meter. On average a 1" can supply about 60gpm. In my area a 5/8" meter installed is about $2000 and a 1" is about $3000. You will have to call your local water purveyor and talk with engineering.

Flow Control
03-29-2007, 09:02 PM
In our area you can have your 5/8 meter switched out with a 1" by the water department for under $150 (they just charge the difference in price) provided you changed the any plumbing necessary to meet their specs. You should just take the meter out and put a piece of pipe in first instead of putting a call into the WD...................

andersa
03-29-2007, 11:29 PM
I hear what you are saying ICS. A little worried about messing with the meter though. It's one thing to make the sprinkler system inoperable but a different matter entirely to accidentally shut of the water to the house... The water meter also has some electronic thingy on it for remote reading. Not sure how that is impacted if I remove the meter.
I will at least check with the utility tomorrow to get an idea of prices of 1" meters and possible service on the current meter.

Flow Control
03-30-2007, 09:28 AM
I hear what you are saying ICS. A little worried about messing with the meter though. It's one thing to make the sprinkler system inoperable but a different matter entirely to accidentally shut of the water to the house... The water meter also has some electronic thingy on it for remote reading. Not sure how that is impacted if I remove the meter.
I will at least check with the utility tomorrow to get an idea of prices of 1" meters and possible service on the current meter.

Point taken, guess from this side it is normal procedure. I understand your concern. Regarding switching the 5/8 for another one: If the meter is screaming then you will need to change to a 1", if it is just a noisey one then swaping with another 5/8 could help the problem. But situations like this are similar to trying to find a needle in a haystack.

Anywho, good luck. I know how annoying the noise can be.

P.S. my definition for screaming vs. noisey

Screaming would be when their is a tremedous amount of volumn/pressure flowing through at near capacity of the meter.

Noisey is just when there is something internally wrong with the meter which causes it to abnormally chatter.

Wet_Boots
03-30-2007, 09:50 AM
The usual maximum for a 5/8 meter used to be 20 gpm, but they've bumped that up since then, and 25 is more common, and there are some meters that have the 30 gpm rating of a 3/4 meter in a 5/8 package. For flows of less than 15 gpm, look to swap meters before considering anything else. Water departments handle noisy meter calls all the time, so they can bring you up to speed. Costs you nothing to call them in.

Ground Master
03-30-2007, 04:17 PM
I would also upsize your 3/4" 35' copper line going to the outside to 1" copper- maybe even going up to 1.25" copper if your zones are requiring high flow.

Mike Leary
03-30-2007, 04:50 PM
I would also upsize your 3/4" 35' copper line going to the outside to 1" copper- maybe even going up to 1.25" copper if your zones are requiring high flow.

I think the up-size in piping is the first thing the fellow should do: unless
it's cheaper to change the zones....got any spare wire out there?
Is you controller big enough to split the zones? I don't think a meter
upgrade would help, because the supply line is so small (6 gpm is all you
can get out of type K). Remember the 5' per second rule, 4.42 @ 6gpm.
If the utility will come out & inspect the meter, cool.

Wet_Boots
03-30-2007, 05:11 PM
If there aren't pipes banging when zones shut off, then the copper can stay as is. This can be brand/model specific. Older Toro valves shut off slow (you should see how slow they shut when using manual bleed to operate them) ~ Irritrol jar-tops seem to shut off faster than the old 205 design does.

At any rate, if the zones get reworked to reduce gpm, the subject of water hammer can be looked at later.

Mike Leary
03-30-2007, 05:32 PM
If there aren't pipes banging when zones shut off, then the copper can stay as is. This can be brand/model specific. Older Toro valves shut off slow (you should see how slow they shut when using manual bleed to operate them) ~ Irritrol jar-tops seem to shut off faster than the old 205 design does.

At any rate, if the zones get reworked to reduce gpm, the subject of water hammer can be looked at later.

Good point....some Rain-Bird valves take a week or so to shut-off, should check type of valve...Love those Weather-Matics!

justgeorge
03-30-2007, 06:08 PM
What about just wrapping the copper pipe inside the house with one or more forms of insulation? Start with the black foam wrap, then keep adding layers of insulation of some type till it's quiet enough.

Just a thought....

George

Wet_Boots
03-30-2007, 06:29 PM
A noisy meter will resonate all through the house. Drive you nuts. Think of baseboard hot water heating when the circulator pump needs the bearings oiled.

Mike Leary
03-30-2007, 06:36 PM
What about just wrapping the copper pipe inside the house with one or more forms of insulation? Start with the black foam wrap, then keep adding layers of insulation of some type till it's quiet enough.

Just a thought....

George

Still using maxi-paws & cut-off risers?

Wet_Boots
03-30-2007, 06:45 PM
Hey! Be kind. :) At least no one has suggested a good thick coating of asbestos cement.

Flow Control
03-30-2007, 08:13 PM
How about a good thick coating of asbestos cement???

andersa
03-31-2007, 10:13 AM
Asbestos cement sounds interesting. Where can I buy it? :rolleyes: I have a guy come in to bid the basement today. I'll ask him about it. LOL.

So house and sprinkler system is 3 years old. All 6 six sprinkler zones have PGV valves, the drip zone has an RB DV valve.
Controller is a Pro-C. I bought an expansion card for it when I installed the drip, so I have currently room for two more stations, plus I can always get one more expansion card if I need to.
I'm out of wire, but it shouldn't be too hard to fish through the basement and the existing conduits.

When finishing the basement, I'm will definitely add ample insulation in the ceiling. The water line is right next to some ducts, so there will be a soffit around it all, allowing for some additional insulation.

bicmudpuppy
03-31-2007, 08:30 PM
Ok, first, the 5fps rule is for plastic irrigation pipe. If you think your going to have any problems with copper pipe, even at speeds of 10fps, I think your spending to much time in books and charts, and not enough time in the mud with those that do this for a living. At 10fps, is there a good chance for noise? yes, but that isn't what is being described here to me. 15 gpm in 3/4 copper is 11fps and about 29psi pressure loss. Now, add in the usual 10-15psi loss for system plumbing and that 95psi is a nice 40-50psi at the head. If the noise is in the meter, I am much more likely to believe the vibration is being carried to an upper story, than that the flow of water in the basement is being carried upstairs. Yes, I have been in places where you heard the water come on no matter where you were, but I don't think that is what is being described here either. Last, there is NOTHING wrong with being frugal and eliminating the things that are free to fix first. Talk to your water purveyor and have the meter checked. Reduce the nozzles in your rotors and see if it helps. Flow reduction will also give you increased pressure at your heads and beter coverage. You might gain enough in pressure to make up for what your losing in smaller nozzels to coverage. If it doesn't, your out an hour or two of time tops. If it would have helped and you split zones, your spending more time and lots of money you didn't need to. In your 7 head zone, change all the non 360's to #2 nozzles. Your pressure should jump to 60psi at the head for 1.0gpm and 31' distance. Your 360's will increase from 1.8gpm and 36' to 2.2gpm and 38'. I would think this would help things all the way around and now you have less than 10gpm by the Hunter spec sheets.

Mike Leary
03-31-2007, 08:56 PM
Uh Clem? I think in my bib overalls this has all been talked about????

Mike Leary
03-31-2007, 09:12 PM
Check out friction loss, bob...not sch 40.

andersa
04-02-2007, 12:32 PM
Hi bic,

some great advise there. Changing out the nozzles shouldn't be a problem. I will try that.

Any suggestions what to do with the two spray zones? I have a corner lot with a very long parkway (area between curb and sidewalk), serviced by 1 1/2 zone. First zone has the following HW:

Station 1 - Hunter Pro Spray

Nozzle # PSI Radius GPM/head GPM tot
RainBird 15CST 8 30 4x30 1.21 9.68
RainBird 15SST 2 30 4x30 1.21 2.42
RainBird 15EST 1 30 4x15 0.61 0.61
Totals: 11 12.71

I will have to double check the spacing. Probably more than 15 feet though, so I doubt lowering the pressure here would work.
The longest stretch of parkway is going East - West. During most of the summer months, the breeze is out of the south. Thus, the grass the first foot or so closest to the curb is dried out/dying.

Here's the HW for zone 2:

Nozzle # PSI Radius GPM/head GPM tot
RainBird 15CST 3 30 4x30 1.21 3.63
RainBird 15SST 2 30 4x30 1.21 2.42
RainBird 15EST 2 30 4x15 0.61 1.22
RainBird 9SST 1 30 9x18 1.73 1.73
12 VAN - 180 1 30 12 1.3 1.3
12Q - 90 deg 1 30 12 0.65 0.65
Totals: 10 10.95


The 15XXX nozzles are on the parkway. The rest are between my house and my neighbor's yard (north side of the house).

Mike Leary
04-02-2007, 05:45 PM
In my limited knowledge (25 years), you can't downsize strip sprays, or any
other spray head without wrecking the head to head application rates.
Wire, young man, wire, strip sprays eat water for breakfast & I suspect, as
I've posted earlier, someone has under-sized the pipe & over-sized the zone.

bicmudpuppy
04-02-2007, 10:27 PM
There is no magic bullet for spray zones. Esp. strip nozzles. If you split these zones, you might be money ahead to use either a doubler or add-a-zone vs. new wire. If you have spares, its all good. The worst part will be adding the pipe to split the zones.

I would "fix" the rotor zones first before I tackled the sprays. If reducing the flow in the rotor zones doesn't solve your problem, then splitting the sprays won't help either.

Wet_Boots
04-02-2007, 11:43 PM
The ultimate solution to the noisy sprinkler problem is simple. Have the water department make a new tap in the main in the street, and install a curbside water meter pit. Get every last drop of sprinkler water out of the house. Then you'll never hear any running water when the sprinklers are on.

andersa
04-02-2007, 11:54 PM
The ultimate solution to the noisy sprinkler problem is simple. Have the water department make a new tap in the main in the street, and install a curbside water meter pit. Get every last drop of sprinkler water out of the house. Then you'll never hear any running water when the sprinklers are on.

It does sound like the ultimate solution. I have a feeling I won't like the cost, but worth looking into.

Wet_Boots
04-03-2007, 12:12 AM
For the money, you might even develop a deep affection for the water meter noise. :)
Any response from the water department on a noisy-meter call?

justgeorge
04-03-2007, 07:53 AM
Around here, our water meters are outside anyway. And if you want a second meter for irrigation (to separate out the sewer charges on irrigation water) they charge $3k.

Wet_Boots
04-03-2007, 08:00 AM
Three grand for a meter? Egad. Do they ever do subtraction meters?

Flow Control
04-03-2007, 08:29 AM
Around here, our water meters are outside anyway. And if you want a second meter for irrigation (to separate out the sewer charges on irrigation water) they charge $3k.


The charge here in NE Ohio is about 10% of that, crazy

andersa
04-03-2007, 10:42 AM
Tapping into the main also requires a very big hole doesn't it? I.e. the main is 8-9 feet down isn't?
I did call the utility and checked prices for an upgrade meter. only got a quote for a 3/4' meter - $332 and I have to install it myself (or have a plumber do it). I will call back again and check the price on 1".
I did not call for service as the sprinkler system is still shut down. Forecast has low 20ies all week, so will have to wait. It is hopefully warming up next week.

justgeorge
04-03-2007, 11:00 AM
Three grand for a meter? Egad. Do they ever do subtraction meters?
Nope. But they do cap the sewer charge during the summer months at the highest wintertime usage. But they don't cap the sewer charge for any irrigation use during spring and fall.

andersa
04-17-2007, 03:27 PM
Sorry to dig up this old thread again. The weather turned nasty for a couple of weeks, but has now improved to the point I have been able to fire up the system.
For fun, I did some readings of the GPM on the different stations. I simply timed the water meter making one lap, which it says corresponds to 1 cu ft. I translated that to GPM in the GPM column. To get the dynamic PSI I hooked up my long trusted quality orbit Pressure Gauge :) to the hose bib in the garage. Is that an accurate way to measure the dynamic PSI?

The result is below. Zone 1 and 2 are spray, 3 - 6 rotor (PGP). I gave the wrong info earlier about zone 5. It has 3, not 2, 360 heads, 1 90 and 3 180. I have messed with the nozzles in that station in the past and I believe a couple of the 360 rotors have #6 or maybe even #7 nozzles. The 90 has a #1 or #2. I have to double check this weekend.

5+ fcts below; I tried to put some stress on the water meter and opened up 3 faucets inside the house while station 5 was running. Managed to squeeze 15.5 GPM through the 5/8" water meter, not bad I guess :)

Zone cuft(s) Dyn PSI GPM
1 41 50 10.9
2 43 44 10.4
3 49 50 9.2 6 PGPs
4 45 50 10.0 6 PGPs
5 37 42 12.1 7 PGPs
6 52 50 8.6 4 PGPs

5+ fcts 29 34 15.5

Static PSI: 84



I don't think there is anything wrong with the water meter. It makes some noise, a hissing sound that increases a little when the GPM goes up, but I can't hear it outside of the basement. Although at 15.5 GPM it did sound like it got a work out.

I still have that other noise I've been trying to explain before. it is like a BRBRBRBRBRBRBR type noise and its frequency increases with the GPM. It seems to be coming from where the pipe leaves the house. That is why I'm wondering if the PVB is responsible. Are PVBs typically generating any kind of noise? I don't have anything to compare with, so that is why I ask.

While zone 6 is running @ 8.6 GPM, it is not too bad, but for the other zones, it is fairly loud I think. But then, perhaps I'm just over sensitive.

Mike Leary
04-17-2007, 04:26 PM
Now did you drink that case of Lawn Genie beer the forum chipped-in for?
Look at your own post just now...the LOWER the gpm demand..the lower
the noise. As I remember, the forum (correctly) suggested larger meter,
larger supply lines, more zones , more Lawn Genie (Orbit used to make a
beer, it's now only sold in N. Cal.) wrap with asbestos, move to a trailer park.

Wet_Boots
04-19-2007, 08:58 AM
I still have that other noise I've been trying to explain before. it is like a BRBRBRBRBRBRBR type noise and its frequency increases with the GPM. It seems to be coming from where the pipe leaves the house. That is why I'm wondering if the PVB is responsible. Are PVBs typically generating any kind of noise? I don't have anything to compare with, so that is why I ask.I think you can hear a noise in a Wilkins 720A PVB, as the water flows by its check valve. Nothing to be alarmed at, and nothing you can fix. Short of tapping a new outdoor sprinkler connection, and getting all the flow removed from the house, there can be sound(s) when the sprinklers run. Nature of the beast.

Flow Control
04-19-2007, 09:03 AM
agreed Boots

DanaMac
04-19-2007, 09:32 AM
Just had a flashback, maybe this will work. We had a similar problem a few years ago, and talked with the Febco rep (backflow preventer was Febco). He recommended changing from the 3/4" to a 1" PVB. It then solved the problem.

I'm not positive that would work for you, but it may.

Wet_Boots
04-19-2007, 09:40 AM
The Wilkins 720A is the same body for either size (and half-inch, too) - who knows, there might be different noise levels for various makes of PVBs at various flows. Nothing I intend to make a study of.

andersa
04-19-2007, 10:11 AM
Thanks guys for confirming my suspicions about the PVB being the source of the noise. Like I have said earlier, it gets worse as the GPM increases. Up to ~ 8 - 9 GPM it is not bad, but above that it is really noticeable. (The drip station at ~ 2-3 GPM can barely be heard at all).

I will start this weekend by changing out nozzles, at least for zone 5 and see where that takes me.

After reading a few thousands posts on this board I started to think that the MP rotators could be a good alternative for the two strip zones as the GPM would pretty much drop in half. But recently someone posted that they aren't that great in windy conditions, so I'm rethinking that alternative. Wind is a major issue on my lot. I would also have to move ~ 15 heads or so, as most of the heads are center and the MPs are not.

andersa
04-19-2007, 10:17 AM
The Wilkins 720A is the same body for either size (and half-inch, too) - who knows, there might be different noise levels for various makes of PVBs at various flows. Nothing I intend to make a study of.

That explains why the 3/4" and the 1" are about the same price, whereas the 1 1/4" and 1 1/2" are at least twice as much.

Just had a flashback, maybe this will work. We had a similar problem a few years ago, and talked with the Febco rep (backflow preventer was Febco). He recommended changing from the 3/4" to a 1" PVB. It then solved the problem.

I'm not positive that would work for you, but it may.

A 1" Febco will be on my shopping list.

Wet_Boots
04-19-2007, 10:59 AM
You may not be able to buy silent sprinkler operation by anything short of replumbing the supply to an outdoor connection. All PVBs have spring-loaded check valves that the water flows past. It's your own personal decision as to what house noises are unbearable. Running the sprinklers during the day would be one simple workaround for the plumbing noise.

andersa
04-19-2007, 12:00 PM
Just got off the phone with MUD (cool name for a water company!).

She gave me the capacity numbers and upgrade prices (pretty much in line with what have been suggested here before):

Size Intermittent GPM Continuous GPM Upgrade cost
5/8" 20 10 -
3/4" 30 15 $388
1" 50 25 $1148.50
I inquired about adding a second water meter. Apparently, they do not allow that for residential...
So that is not an option.

She also said that I got one of the last 5/8" installed, as they have since discontinued their use and are now exclusively using 3/4" for residential.

Just my luck...

Wet_Boots
04-19-2007, 12:24 PM
Separate taps and meters are probably easiest to obtain in towns that have their own water departments and road crews, so any tappings and pavement-breakings are done by their own people. And even those towns would be deferring to county and state authorities for certain roads.

I remember old-time sprinkler systems with impact heads, and occasional customer inquiries about the noise they made while operating. Even some phone calls from unhappy neighbors to the police to make noise complaints. Then, as now, the advice from contractor and policeman was to get over the noise, as it was all 'reasonable' and not excessive.

Mike Leary
04-19-2007, 06:00 PM
M[QUOTE=andersa;1800143]


I will start this weekend by changing out nozzles, at least for zone 5 and see where that takes me.

After reading a few thousands posts on this board I started to think that the MP rotators could be a good alternative for the two strip zones as the GPM would pretty much drop in half.

MP Rotators are wind sensitive, as I've posted, BUT, the lower gpm might
just get you into the lower noise you desire, lot less expensive than the rest
of our suggestions! Sorry for the tirade...I am learning patience on this forum.:waving:
MPs are made in full circles.

andersa
04-20-2007, 11:01 AM
No sweat Mike - I know it's the cranky season for you guys :)

The MPs are tempting. Especially for the two strip spray zones. But, almost all my spray heads are center and my understanding is that MP strip only comes in side config. Thus I would have to move ~ 15 heads about 1 1/2 feet. And then there is the wind. Nebraska is WINDY. I already have a heck of a time keeping the parkway green because the longest stretch is East - West and the wind is mostly coming from the south or south west. The grass to the south of the center strips tend to get little water as the wind pushes most of it to the north and on to the sidewalk.

Never the less, perhaps the best remedy is to use side strips in a triangle pattern regardless. Once that is done, it would be easy to play with the RB strips vs. the MP strips and see whether they perform adequately and if they do, 2 problems solved.

Mike Leary
04-20-2007, 11:51 AM
It's still a better option to use the MPs (as I said, cheaper than other options,
yass, a little sweat equity) Rain-Bird strip sprays mite not do it , as the gpm
used could put you back in the high (noisy) range again. I don't have the specs for the MP strips, but when you get them from Walla Walla, compare
them to Rain-Bird. Here's a link:rainbird.com

andersa
04-20-2007, 01:31 PM
OK, you got me convinced Mike! I called the local dealer and he said he hadn't heard any complaints from ppl. around here about the wind issue; said everyone who has tried the MPStrips love them.

I'll pick up enough of 'em today for zone 2 (fewest # of heads to move).

Mike Leary
04-20-2007, 02:19 PM
I think the bottom line for you is to try to keep those zones 7-8 gpm; the MPs
don't require a lot of pressure either, furthering your quest for peace & quiet.
Good luck, M.

andersa
04-20-2007, 06:07 PM
Got the MPs installed in Zone 2, although I have yet to move the 4 heads that need to be moved.
Wow. Down to 5 GPM and it now run dead quiet. There's of course still the initial "rush" when the station comes on for a few seconds, but after that it is really nice and quiet.

A couple of the neighbors stopped by and were impressed. They do look pretty cool.

So far so good. Thanks!

andersa
04-22-2007, 12:57 PM
Moved the four heads yesterday. Wasn't too bad.
So far everything seems to work OK.

Now I have another 8 to move on Zone 1.

Mike Leary
04-24-2007, 04:57 PM
Moved the four heads yesterday. Wasn't too bad.
So far everything seems to work OK.

Now I have another 8 to move on Zone 1.

I've been away getting my annual lobotomy...glad to hear all gong well.

Wet_Boots
04-24-2007, 05:45 PM
"Better a bottle in front of me,
than to get a frontal lobotomy"

Mike Leary
04-24-2007, 06:00 PM
"Better a bottle in front of me,
than to get a frontal lobotomy"

I ran out of Lawn Genie so we took the Airstream to eastern Oregon; not
much residential irrigation there! Neat to see the big "travelers" at work.