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View Full Version : Changed out some spray heads with small rotors, and now new rotors won't work...


cbwardrop
06-07-2008, 09:20 PM
Hi all,

I'm new here and have a very ameteur question. Working on a pre-existing system that used all spray heads. Spray heads provide inadequate coverage (if at all), so I decided to try rotors.

Got some small Rain Bird rotors, screwed them in, and now ... nothing. The head pops up, water squirts for a second (as if clearing the line), but it does not operate.

What have I done wrong?

Thanks for any and all suggestions.

Dirty Water
06-07-2008, 09:26 PM
Did you put nozzles in them?

Flow Control
06-07-2008, 09:28 PM
need more info, such as number of sprays & nozzles used. Nozzles used in the 3504's. Pressure and flow rates if possible. Up hill, down hill, no hill. Valve type, booster pump, backflow, pipe size & material.

Waterit
06-07-2008, 10:00 PM
What have I done wrong?

Check GPM and PSI on zone?

cbwardrop
06-07-2008, 11:32 PM
In this particular zone, there are (or, were) 8 pop-up spray heads.

Thought I could reduce the entire zone to 2 rotors and 3 pop-up spray heads.

One of the rotors works fine. But the other location simply won't work.

Am I just missing the obvious -- are spray heads and rotors not simply interchangeable?

cbwardrop
06-07-2008, 11:33 PM
Did you put nozzles in them?

They're pop-up rotors...they already have nozzles.

Mike Leary
06-07-2008, 11:38 PM
Welcome to the forum, the pros will figure this one out immediately.:dizzy::dizzy:

Dirty Water
06-07-2008, 11:51 PM
In this particular zone, there are (or, were) 8 pop-up spray heads.

Thought I could reduce the entire zone to 2 rotors and 3 pop-up spray heads.

One of the rotors works fine. But the other location simply won't work.

Am I just missing the obvious -- are spray heads and rotors not simply interchangeable?

Time to go to school.

Each sprinkler nozzle (be it sprayhead, or rotor) spray out water at a different GPM. You want to match the amount of water so you will have even distribution across your yard.

A sprayhead pushes a lot more GPM a shorter distance than a rotor. By mixing them, you'll have an area that gets soaked by the sprayheads before the rotors even get their area even half way damp.

So, first order of business is to find out the nozzle types in your heads, and let us know. Then we can go from there.

Oh, and don't mix sprayheads and rotors. :nono:

hoskm01
06-08-2008, 12:25 AM
Should have boughtt rotors at a pro shop, not home depot. Only big box RB rotors come with nozzles installed.

DanaMac
06-08-2008, 02:23 AM
I don't even wanna touch this one. Sorry pal. Get someone in that knows what they're doing. too many gpm being pushed out, guaranteed.

lowvolumejeff
06-08-2008, 02:56 AM
Suggest you start with some basics, and a good tutorial is available at
http://www.irrigationtutorials.com/ . Lots of good information there. Good Luck. Jeff

DanaMac
06-08-2008, 03:00 AM
Suggest you start with some basics, and a good tutorial is available at
http://www.irrigationtutorials.com/ . Lots of good information there. Good Luck. Jeff

Shhhh..... don't give all our secrets out.

FIMCO-MEISTER
06-08-2008, 05:09 AM
Hi all,

I'm new here and have a very ameteur question. Working on a pre-existing system that used all spray heads. Spray heads provide inadequate coverage (if at all), so I decided to try rotors.

Got some small Rain Bird rotors, screwed them in, and now ... nothing. The head pops up, water squirts for a second (as if clearing the line), but it does not operate.

What have I done wrong?

Thanks for any and all suggestions.

Gotta love Floridians. Every Texas irrigator says "Thank God for Florida."

Waterit
06-08-2008, 08:51 AM
Gotta love Floridians. Every Texas irrigator says "Thank God for Florida."

Why do they say that?

Kiril
06-08-2008, 08:55 AM
Why do they say that?

Cause Texans know they are running a close second to the nightmare Floridians call irrigation. :laugh:

cbwardrop
06-08-2008, 10:16 AM
Gotta love Floridians. Every Texas irrigator says "Thank God for Florida."

I don't get it. What does being a Floridian have to do with my question?

Wet_Boots
06-08-2008, 10:22 AM
Lotta crapola lawn sprinkler systems in Florida, and it sounds like one of them is yours.

AI Inc
06-08-2008, 10:49 AM
no sugar coating there ,lol

Waterit
06-08-2008, 11:28 AM
Gotta love Floridians. Every Texas irrigator says "Thank God for Florida."

Cause Texans know they are running a close second to the nightmare Floridians call irrigation. :laugh:

Lotta crapola lawn sprinkler systems in Florida, and it sounds like one of them is yours.

:::Fuming, trying to think of witty, cut-to-the-bone response:::

Not ALL Florida stuff is "crapola" - as anywhere that there is little or no regulation or knowledgeable inspection of a man's work, there is indeed a lot of crap. We don't have state licensing - it's left up to each county - so if a guy can afford a hacksaw and a shovel he can be a sprinkler man. Even where there is licensing/permitting/inspection, the plumbing inspectors have no idea what they are looking at other than trench depth and whether there's a backflow and a rain sensor. There are many more guys concerned with the bottom line than the quality/efficiency of their work.

I feel I give my clients the best system (within the budget we are handed) I possibly can, through flow calcs, layout, and precip rates. Then it comes down to if I bid 30 rotors and 12 sprays, Joe Sprinkler says he can do it with 25 rotors and 2 sprays, and gets the work based on price. So the consumer also is partly responsible for what goes on down here: it's almost always about the cost. To paraphrase an LS poster: "good systems aren't cheap, cheap systems aren't good." Of course, I do make a lot of money fixing crappy systems...

:::feels better for venting:::

FIMCO-MEISTER
06-08-2008, 11:31 AM
:::Fuming, trying to think of witty, cut-to-the-bone response:::

Not ALL Florida stuff is "crapola" - as anywhere that there is little or no regulation or knowledgeable inspection of a man's work, there is indeed a lot of crap. We don't have state licensing - it's left up to each county - so if a guy can afford a hacksaw and a shovel he can be a sprinkler man. Even where there is licensing/permitting/inspection, the plumbing inspectors have no idea what they are looking at other than trench depth and whether there's a backflow and a rain sensor. There are many more guys concerned with the bottom line than the quality/efficiency of their work.

I feel I give my clients the best system (within the budget we are handed) I possibly can, through flow calcs, layout, and precip rates. Then it comes down to if I bid 30 rotors and 12 sprays, Joe Sprinkler says he can do it with 25 rotors and 2 sprays, and gets the work based on price. So the consumer also is partly responsible for what goes on down here: it's almost always about the cost. To paraphrase an LS poster: "good systems aren't cheap, cheap systems aren't good." Of course, I do make a lot of money fixing crappy systems...

:::feels better for venting:::

We already knew you were an exception. Great vent though!:clapping:

Waterit
06-08-2008, 11:31 AM
Thank you, kind sir!:)

cbwardrop
06-08-2008, 12:27 PM
At any rate, I think the previous owner installed it himself.

Still don't see what that has to do with my innocuous question about using spray heads and rotors together. I saw someone say you shouldn't do it. I get that. My question was geared more towards why the new rotors don't work.

A response such as "go to school" is, for lack of a better word, worthless. Apparently although you can be a professional, it does not necessarily follow that you are professional.

Thanks to those who posted more informative responses.

Dirty Water
06-08-2008, 12:29 PM
At any rate, I think the previous owner installed it himself.

Still don't see what that has to do with my innocuous question about using spray heads and rotors together. I saw someone say you shouldn't do it. I get that. My question was geared more towards why the new rotors don't work.

A response such as "go to school" is, for lack of a better word, worthless. Apparently although you can be a professional, it does not necessarily follow that you are professional.

Thanks to those who posted more informative responses.

You still haven't told me what number nozzle is in your new rotors, or how many on each zone. I tried twice to help you out. You are not helping your case.

I'd say get a contractor, but the ones in Florida tend to suck, so your probably just SOL.

DanaMac
06-08-2008, 12:34 PM
In nut shell, you're nozzles are probably too big. They are putting out more water than the original spray heads. Also mini rotors suck. I also see a lot of "blow by" from between the stem and seal.

Dirty Water
06-08-2008, 12:37 PM
In nut shell, you're nozzles are probably too big. They are putting out more water than the original spray heads. Also mini rotors suck. I also see a lot of "blow by" from between the stem and seal.

To clarify,

if you even have nozzles in the heads...they are too big, which requires more pressure than you have, so they won't stay popped.

So I ask again, how many per zone ,and what # nozzle is in the heads?

FIMCO-MEISTER
06-08-2008, 12:40 PM
You still haven't told me what number nozzle is in your new rotors, or how many on each zone. I tried twice to help you out. You are not helping your case.

I'd say get a contractor, but the ones in Florida tend to suck, so your probably just SOL.

Too broad a statement. Should say find a quality contractor who has been in business 10 plus years. ::::Trying to make peace with my FL friends:::::We did both elect Bushs Governor::::::

AI Inc
06-08-2008, 12:43 PM
Too broad a statement. Should say find a quality contractor who has been in business 10 plus years. ::::Trying to make peace with my FL friends:::::We did both elect Bushs Governor::::::

In time , we will forvige you.

CAPT Stream Rotar
06-08-2008, 12:49 PM
rip it out>start over

Mike Leary
06-08-2008, 12:56 PM
To clarify,

if you even have nozzles in the heads...they are too big, which requires more pressure than you have, so they won't stay popped.

So I ask again, how many per zone ,and what # nozzle is in the heads?

:::As Jon beats a dead horse::::::

AI Inc
06-08-2008, 01:25 PM
To clarify,

if you even have nozzles in the heads...they are too big, which requires more pressure than you have, so they won't stay popped.

So I ask again, how many per zone ,and what # nozzle is in the heads?

Lets put it in simple terms, when ya wife sends ya to the store with $100 and ya try to buy $170 worth of groceries , it dont work!

Waterit
06-08-2008, 01:28 PM
Lets put it in simple terms, when ya wife sends ya to the store with $100 and ya try to buy $170 worth of groceries , it dont work!

We call it trying to get 10 pounds out of a 5 pound bag:nono:

Waterit
06-08-2008, 01:30 PM
I'd say get a contractor, but the ones in Florida tend to suck, so your probably just SOL.

Quit bashing us so bad!:mad:

Too broad a statement. Should say find a quality contractor who has been in business 10 plus years. ::::Trying to make peace with my FL friends:::::We did both elect Bushs Governor::::::

Now that's the spirit!:laugh:

Either 10 years in biz or is actually licensed by local competency board (although that's still no guarantee).

Mike Leary
06-08-2008, 04:04 PM
Either 10 years in biz or is actually licensed by local competency board (although that's still no guarantee).

Might try the LS competency board, 'course, there'll be a slight charge.

Waterit
06-08-2008, 04:39 PM
Might try the LS competency board, 'course, there'll be a slight charge.

From what I've read from you elitist bas####s, unless one resides in CO, WA, TX, or the NE, they'll NEVER qualify!:laugh:

Mike Leary
06-08-2008, 05:02 PM
From what I've read from you elitist bas####s, unless one resides in CO, WA, TX, or the NE, they'll NEVER qualify!:laugh:

Hey hey, no need for expletives, this is a family site. By the way, it's
WA., CO., CA., NE, in that order. The rest are still learning. Oops, forgot about London & Fimco.

DanaMac
06-08-2008, 05:08 PM
From what I've read from you elitist bas####s, unless one resides in CO, WA, TX, or the NE, they'll NEVER qualify!:laugh:

And don't you forget it!! :)

Wet_Boots
06-08-2008, 05:47 PM
Just you elitist barstids never forget that the Safe-T-Lawn ball-drive-rotor (http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&safe=off&q=%22ball+drive+rotor%22&btnG=Search+Images) was invented by a Florida company.

TPendagast
06-08-2008, 06:11 PM
You have a tell tale sign of too much expected GPM for the amount of available GPM.

Lets say you had 8 pop ups that put out 1.05 gpm per head for a total of 8.40gpm (typical of VAN nozzels)

the first law of hydrology is do not mix sprays and rotors, because this math will not work, the friction loss and variables will be all wacked out.

Second most residential designs put out betwen 8-12 gpm per zone/valve (you can do alot more in most subdivsions, when they are new, but when you start adding on more houses and they are washing the dishes and everyones sprinklers go off at 5am....bam nothing works. So just figure 8-12 max

Third your rotors you added obviously over extended the valves possible output. Thereby ha ing no back presure which drops your PSI below what is needed to even activate your heads. (i.e BIG hole, not enough water to squirt)

So what can you do?

#1) check you valve, is a rain bird DV or DVF? if it is a DVF it has a variable flow knob on it, it's possible the line has more gpm availabe and the valve is restricting.
IF it's and non flow adjustable valve, you can't do anything there.
#2) make sure your valve, and/or lateral is not stopped up with debris, often from working on the line you can get sand, little rocks or mud jacked up in there.
#3) change over all the pop-ups to rotors.
#4) check your nozzle sizes on your rotor do you have 1.0? 1.25? you could have as much as a 3 in there! Change out your nozzles go with a 1.0.
PRobably by now you have gotten your pressure back and all is good.
IF not, you may have to split the zone and have 3-4 rotors on the original valve and the remainder on a new valve, this can be tricky ifthe original installer did not run a few extra controller wires (which is standard for someone who knows what they are doing, but all to often uncommon)
Also you clock may not have enough stations available in your existing clock.
You could go with a rainbird Tbos, or a hunter battery controlled vavle for the new valve if necessary.
Pricey options but it depends on your customers needs.

Final option and probably the best and easiest and most cost efficent.

Put the pop-ups back and put MP rotator nozzels on them. You will get you pressure back, have much better coverage, and they cost like 5 bucks per nozzel.
Also, remember because mp rotators put out less volume than traditional vans you will need to bump up the time on that zone 40-50%, consider using MP rotators on the enitre system.

I upgrade half of grand junction colorado (or it seems like it) with mp rotators, everyone loved them, it ismega easy (dont even need a shovel) and I made fat net!

Waterit
06-08-2008, 06:11 PM
Just you elitist barstids never forget that the Safe-T-Lawn ball-drive-rotor (http://images.google.com/images?hl=en&safe=off&q=%22ball+drive+rotor%22&btnG=Search+Images) was invented by a Florida company.

Boots, Metro NYC very general - can you get more geographically specific (I'm originally from Westchester).

FL also responsible for K-Rain. Well, at least their controllers and pump-starts are good:)

Wet_Boots
06-08-2008, 06:30 PM
I wouldn't get too prideful over K-Rain, but no question their founder is a busy little bee.

Ahh, Westchester, from the Sprain Brook Parkway to Shore Acres to Sleepy Hollow. Nice county.

Mike Leary
06-08-2008, 07:12 PM
You have a tell tale sign of too much expected GPM for the amount of available GPM. nozzels nozzel.

Big long post from someone who can't spell" nozzles." :hammerhead:

Waterit
06-08-2008, 10:25 PM
I wouldn't get too prideful over K-Rain, but no question their founder is a busy little bee.

Ahh, Westchester, from the Sprain Brook Parkway to Shore Acres to Sleepy Hollow. Nice county.

Yup, that's more specific.