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Robert100
03-08-2009, 06:21 PM
I moved into my house a short while ago. When I moved in, the 3 zones of sprinklers in the front yard worked, and one of the three in the back worked. After a short while, the one in the back yard stopped working as well.

I have since rewired the sprinklers, thinking that would solve the problem but it didn't. The 3 in the back yard still don't work. I tried turning them on manually but they won't come on. I'm wondering what could possibly be the problem. I assume the main line is connected properly because the one zone worked for a short period of time.

Does anyone have a clue on how I can fix this on my own?

Thanks,
Robert

Wet_Boots
03-08-2009, 06:28 PM
Homeowner Assistance Forum (http://www.lawnsite.com/forumdisplay.php?f=3)

FIMCO-MEISTER
03-08-2009, 06:42 PM
Is your water coming from N. CA? If so I'm philosophically unable to help you but I do wish you well.

hoskm01
03-08-2009, 07:14 PM
Is your water coming from N. CA? If so I'm philosophically unable to help you but I do wish you well.
He actually ran out of water thanks to you damming that spring upstream here in FOCO at your new place.

Mike Leary
03-08-2009, 07:21 PM
Ignore the riff-raff, they actually sell shoes but are groupies. What brand controller and valves do you have?

Sprinkus
03-08-2009, 07:28 PM
Size 13 wide?

OK, ok........here is a troubleshooting flow chart (http://www.lashen.com/vendors/tempo/Manuals/trblsht.pdf) that might be useful (page 2).

humble1
03-08-2009, 07:37 PM
if it worked before and you dont have a broke pipe it is either clock, wire or valve.
Assuming you can program the clock properly-

The old switch-aroo

To test clock lets say zone 1 front yard works but zone 5 backyard doesnt. Is it the output on the controler or is the module is bad. Take the zone you know works 1 front yard and wire it into the zone 5 backyard. Take the zone 5 that isnt working and put it in zone 1. Does zone 1 still fire off and when it does it is effectivly firing off the zone 5 out back?

Will zone 5 fire off and run the front yard. then it is controler because you then determined both valves are working so it is a supply issue.

Take apart valve make sure nothing is in it, bring a coffe cup to bail water so chit doesnt get in it. Do you have water, any heavy equipment, I once had a concrete truck crush a line so bad that water trickled. Also once the town was flushing hydrants and the psi dropped so much that it wouldnt push up the 6 heads on the zone but would get up the 4 head zones.

find the valves and determine which one is zone 5 disconect the common and zone wire from that valve or just cut the wires halfway up. Fire off zone 1 still connected to the backyard that isnt functioning, you know it has power from earlier, use a new valve solonoid and touch it to the wires if it clicks you got power to the valve if not you have a cut or corroded wire.

Good luck

FIMCO-MEISTER
03-08-2009, 07:39 PM
Whooo you are my kinda guy HUMBLE. Keep the sig and join the fight.

Stuttering Stan
03-08-2009, 07:57 PM
Whooo you are my kinda guy HUMBLE. Keep the sig and join the fight.
Are you saying that because of his political views or irrigation knowledge? I thought there was another forum for that.

Without A Drought
03-08-2009, 08:29 PM
no water at all 3 rear valves smells of a bad master valve.

FIMCO-MEISTER
03-08-2009, 09:05 PM
He actually ran out of water thanks to you damming that spring upstream here in FOCO at your new place.

It's a Dam eat Dam world Man.

FIMCO-MEISTER
03-08-2009, 09:06 PM
Are you saying that because of his political views or irrigation knowledge? I thought there was another forum for that.

Both and yes.

mitchgo
03-08-2009, 11:14 PM
no water at all 3 rear valves smells of a bad master valve.

Where is the logic in that?
The front works but the back doesn't. The installer decided to do a master valve for half of the system?

If all the 3 valves are in the same valve box and ( IF ) the valves have FC my bet someone turned down all the Flow Controls on all the valves before even considering there was a master valve for half the system.

Wet_Boots
03-08-2009, 11:21 PM
The OP reposted the question in the Homeowner Advice forum, and has received the correct answer. :)

humble1
03-10-2009, 02:24 PM
no water at all 3 rear valves smells of a bad master valve.

Except one of the valves worked for a while if it were a master all valves would have not worked.

Robert100
03-10-2009, 02:37 PM
Thanks for the tips so far. I don't have any experience working on sprinklers besides watering so I'm not sure what some of the tersm are.

What is the difference between a regular valve and a master valve? Where is the master valve usually located?

FIMCO-MEISTER
03-10-2009, 02:40 PM
Thanks for the tips so far. I don't have any experience working on sprinklers besides watering so I'm not sure what some of the tersm are.

What is the difference between a regular valve and a master valve? Where is the master valve usually located?

http://www.irrigationtutorials.com/faq/master-valve.htm

Robert100
03-10-2009, 03:16 PM
Thank you for the website. It's very helpful. I have not been able to locate the master valve on my property. What should I be looking for?

Wet_Boots
03-10-2009, 03:20 PM
Thank you for the website. It's very helpful. I have not been able to locate the master valve on my property. What should I be looking for?Look for a digital camera to photograph the valves in question. For the most common valve in use in Southern California, the solution for your problem was posted on the Homeowner Forum.

Robert100
03-11-2009, 12:04 AM
Here are the valvues in the front yard, notice the smaller knobs: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3377/3345206491_c9248cf10f.jpg


Here are the valves in the back yard: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3629/3345206305_7639c20420.jpg

Here is a hole in the ground that I found near the valves in the front yard: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3549/3345197247_ce7f00b49a.jpg

DanaMac
03-11-2009, 12:34 AM
Those kind of Rainbird valves are essentially crap. Some of them have most likely failed. Notice the two different kinds? The valves in the first pic have been updated. the valves in the second pic are tough to find replacement parts anymore. They will usually fail closed. there is a plunger inside them that fails. Along with the solenoid. there is also a ring that goes around the plunger that cracks and sometimes prevents them from opening.

They are retail valves. Might be able to find some at Home Depot and change out the "guts". But first would be to figure which valves operate the zones in question, and figure out if you have power to them. If so, it might be easier to replace the entire valve due to parts being difficult to find.

But it could also be the flow controls are turned down/off. Too many things that it could possibly be.

Robert100
03-11-2009, 02:17 AM
Where do I find the flow control valves?

DanaMac
03-11-2009, 09:20 AM
Where do I find the flow control valves?

In the top pic, it is the black 'cross" looking knob. Turn it counterclockwise to open it up. On the second pic, it is the gray "ring" just below the black solenoid that has the wires. Gently turn counterclockwise as well. BUT - if they were working and just stopped for no reason, unless someone was messing with the valves, it is probably not the FC. From seeing the pictures, I am predicting bad wire connections, or valve failure.

And the reason I say bad wire connections is those connectors are neither water proof, nor have any kind of gel inside to prevent corrosion.

Kiril
03-11-2009, 09:23 AM
Those kind of Rainbird valves are essentially crap. Some of them have most likely failed. Notice the two different kinds? The valves in the first pic have been updated. the valves in the second pic are tough to find replacement parts anymore. They will usually fail closed. there is a plunger inside them that fails. Along with the solenoid. there is also a ring that goes around the plunger that cracks and sometimes prevents them from opening.

Ditto ... plus the valves in the second pic are easy to shut off without even realizing you have done so.

On both sets, establish you can manually operate the valves first. This will narrow down what you need to look for. It would be hard for me to believe all the valves went bad at the same time, so if a manual trigger fails, then you need to find where your source is coming from and any valves (like the one in your 3rd pic) that might be off.

Once you have determined you have water and the valve can be manually triggered, then it is either a controller, solenoid, or electrical problem.

Kiril
03-11-2009, 09:28 AM
And the reason I say bad wire connections is those connectors are neither water proof, nor have any kind of gel inside to prevent corrosion.

The ones in the first pic look like they are water proofing (Ideal brand I believe), but I am having a hard time finding where the valves are wired into the common .... do you see it?

DanaMac
03-11-2009, 09:32 AM
The ones in the first pic look like they are water proofing (Ideal brand I believe), but I am having a hard time finding where the valves are wired into the common .... do you see it?

Tough to tell. The top pic has at least 5 wire connects for 3 valves, and the second has at least 8 for 4 valves. Can't really see one common connector.

Kiril
03-11-2009, 09:36 AM
Tough to tell. The top pic has at least 5 wire connects for 3 valves, and the second has at least 8 for 4 valves. Can't really see one common connector.

Yup. Better pics of the wiring + shot of the interior of the controller would go a long way towards solving this problem.

humble1
03-11-2009, 10:00 AM
Good posts, In my opinion I would turn the solonoid manually(the solonoid is the thing that the two wires come in on the top) you only need to rotate it1/4-1/2 turn with water on. Just to make sure you still have water to the valve. 2nd before you go and buy new valves try taking off the wire connectors and look at the connector and wire, is there any corrosion (green stuff) on the copper wire? I have seen more valves not work because it cant get enough voltage to the solonoid becaus eof resistance from corrosion. I know guys that dont use db wire connectors so they have service calls for the rest of their life.
Strip back till you hace good wire and reconnect. If it still fails then replace the solonoids and guts, you can take the screws out and pop the top off w. the diaphram. Bring it to a commercial irrigation supply house they should be able to match it up. Out here we install everything below ground so I am not familiar w/ those valves but they look similar to rainbird dv-100, i have never seen the other ones, not much room for a diaphram and scrubber. good luck

Robert100
03-11-2009, 12:53 PM
Like I said before, I'm pretty new to this so I can understand the wiring connections probably look atrocious to you pros. I don't know if this is proper etiquette to do it this way, but for the connection to the white wire, I used bridge wiring to connect each solenoid to each other, then with the final connection I sent a wire to the timer line. It worked decently on the valves in pic 1 (front yard) so I don't think it could be an issue for pic 2 (back yard).

The valves in the top pic work fine. It's the ones in the second pic I'm having a problem with. I used non waterproof connectors on the back yard because I didn't have waterproof at the time and just wanted to test the valves to see if they would turn on using the timer. When the time comes I'll put some weatherproof connectors on like the ones in the first picture.

Someone brought up an interesting point about the manual way to open the valves in pic 2 is to turn the grey ring underneath the solenoid. I've been actually turning the solenoid to try to open the valves because I've had success doing that with the valves in pic 1. I'm going to try that when I get home today and post a response. I'm thinking I'll probably end up changing out the valves in pic 2 either way though.

Kiril
03-11-2009, 12:58 PM
I'm thinking I'll probably end up changing out the valves in pic 2 either way though.

If you do, go with either 2713APR (1") or 2711APR (3/4") (Irritrol)

http://www.irritrol.com/pdf/sellsheet_2700.pdf

Oh, and I almost always spec 1" .... rarely ever 3/4" .... plus the 1" are usually cheaper.

Robert100
03-11-2009, 11:30 PM
I tried turning the grey ring to no avail. I believe as some of you folks have said, that the valves are faulty. I moved into the house at the end of September. It was a foreclosure, and these valves (not to mentoin the grass) had been baking out in the Southern California sun for the hottest months of the year. So that could have possibly caused the issue.

This Saturday I'm going to go outside and check for another hole in the ground that might contain a valve for the back yard sprinklers, if I can't find one I'm going to change out the valves in pic 2. I'll post whether that solves the problem here for the sake of future users having similar issues.

DanaMac
03-12-2009, 12:12 AM
I tried turning the grey ring to no avail. I believe as some of you folks have said, that the valves are faulty. I moved into the house at the end of September. It was a foreclosure, and these valves (not to mentoin the grass) had been baking out in the Southern California sun for the hottest months of the year. So that could have possibly caused the issue.

This Saturday I'm going to go outside and check for another hole in the ground that might contain a valve for the back yard sprinklers, if I can't find one I'm going to change out the valves in pic 2. I'll post whether that solves the problem here for the sake of future users having similar issues.

What you need to do to manually run those valves, is hold the gray ring in place with one hand, and twist the top black portion (solenoid) appx. 1/2 turn. You really need to find the problem first before replacing the valves. You may replace them and still not take care of the problem. Do ANY of those valves turn on?

mitchgo
03-12-2009, 01:08 AM
What you need to do to manually run those valves, is hold the gray ring in place with one hand, and twist the top black portion (solenoid) appx. 1/2 turn. You really need to find the problem first before replacing the valves. You may replace them and still not take care of the problem. Do ANY of those valves turn on?

If that doesn't work I think he should verify that the Flow Control is not shut off.

So robert, To verify that the Flow control is not shut off you need to turn the solenoid and the Gray ring ( left loosey) AT the same time Alllll the way untill it stops... If it's fully shut off it will be several revolutions. Then turn the solenoid 1/2 turn.

Robert100
03-12-2009, 02:09 AM
I just want to say I really appreciate the feedback I've gotten so far.

So, I've already tried turning the solenoids with the grey ring at the same time. That is what I did tonight, and what I've been doing in the past. Tomorrow I'll try turning only the solenoid while holding the grey ring in place. I assume the grey ring needs to be completely tightened before opening the solenoid. Are there any other checks I should do before replacing the valves?

Robert100
03-12-2009, 02:20 AM
Well fellows, I just couldn't wait. I went outside just now and checked the valves by turning the solenoid while holding the grey ring.

The first one I tried, I unscrewed the solenoid completely without any results. But there was evidence of water underneath the solenoid. And I didn't realize this before now, but I actually have 4 valves in the back yard. The other 3 valves worked when i used this method. Turning the solenoid while holding the grey ring I got water pressure and the sprinklers because pumping water. Now that I know this, what now? How do I get this to happen under the timer's control?

mitchgo
03-12-2009, 03:07 AM
. I assume the grey ring needs to be completely tightened before opening the solenoid.

It actually needs to be Completely loose. If it's all the way tight It will stop the flow of water. So you have make sure the gray part ( Flow control) is all the way to the left (Remember it's several revolutions like a Gate Valve)

Well fellows, I just couldn't wait. I went outside just now and checked the valves by turning the solenoid while holding the grey ring.

The first one I tried, I unscrewed the solenoid completely without any results. But there was evidence of water underneath the solenoid. And I didn't realize this before now, but I actually have 4 valves in the back yard. The other 3 valves worked when i used this method. Turning the solenoid while holding the grey ring I got water pressure and the sprinklers because pumping water. Now that I know this, what now? How do I get this to happen under the timer's control?

So Right now there are a few possibilites for that valve that isn't working.
1- Your Flow Control has damaged your valve from tightening it to hard and does not allow flow.
2- Your Flow Control is just still tight.
3- You are not getting water to that valve from the main line side.
4- When you turned on the other 3 zones. How did the layout look? Is any area missing in your lawn or shrubs or does everything seem to be covered. It's a possibility that zone has been capped off.


Now if the zones work manually but not electrically then of course there is an issue with your wiring.

Kiril
03-12-2009, 10:40 AM
I'm placing bets on the flow control being the problem here, at least with regard to turning it on manually. Those RB ASV's he's got in the back are POS IMO.

Wet_Boots
03-12-2009, 10:55 AM
Aren't those cheesy RB ASVs actually serviceable by replacing the guts with any Champion-compatible valve actuator? (bringing Lawn Genie back into play :))

DanaMac
03-12-2009, 10:59 AM
Aren't those cheesy RB ASVs actually serviceable by replacing the guts with any Champion-compatible valve actuator? (bringing Lawn Genie back into play :))

Yes they are.

Kiril
03-12-2009, 11:14 AM
Aren't those cheesy RB ASVs actually serviceable by replacing the guts with any Champion-compatible valve actuator? (bringing Lawn Genie back into play :))

Also brings Irritrol into play as well I believe. Personally I would not attempt to make the value better with a new actuator. The actuator costs more than a new quality valve will.

Wet_Boots
03-12-2009, 11:26 AM
It kind of bugs me that my Irritrol actuators cost me more wholesale than the Lawn Genie equivalent sells for at the home centers. At least the 2711APR equivalent lacks the manual operation lever, so my professional product is superior.

RAlmaroad
03-13-2009, 03:22 PM
So Robert, did you find another valve hidden somewhere?

Mike Leary
03-13-2009, 03:58 PM
Great sig......:clapping:

Robert100
03-16-2009, 07:32 PM
I did not find any other valves hidden anywhere. There is a gold colored (possibly brass) "thing" attached to some pvc piping, it has a knob on top however the knob does not turn.

Admittedly, I have not gotten around to testing the electrical connections. I did try turning the solenoid while holding the grey ring as we've discussed. That seems to be well and good if I want to turn the sprinklers on manually, but what if I want them to come on by way of the controller? What position should the solenoid and grey ring be in?

So far the only positions I have found to make sure the water doesn't turn on is turning the solenoid clockwise to close the valve, or turning both the gray ring and the solenoid counterclockwise together. Can anyone tell me which position they should be in for the water to turn on by using the controller?

Wet_Boots
03-16-2009, 07:50 PM
First things first. Check the wiring. Check the resistance of each zone, using a multimeter. (disconnect the zone wire from the controller before the measurement)

Robert100
03-17-2009, 12:36 AM
I don't have a multimeter, and don't plan to buy one since I won't need it besides this one time. But I'll check the wiring first. If anyone has any insight into my question I'd appreciate it.

Thanks.

DanaMac
03-17-2009, 01:28 AM
Might be time to put it to rest and hire a pro. You've narrowed it down, now get someone to repair it. Too many things it could be.

unit28
03-17-2009, 10:16 AM
no water at all 3 rear valves smells of a bad master valve.

or, it really smells of backwards enginearing.
Backwards installed valves will do this too.

I'm just sayin.:)

AI Inc
03-17-2009, 10:16 AM
Or a second water source.

unit28
03-17-2009, 10:22 AM
Or a second water source.

easy to check that, he has water when turning open solinoid.
shut off front water source and check rear valves again.

DanaMac
03-17-2009, 10:23 AM
Or a second water source.

Hmmm.... second controller maybe?

Sprinkus
03-17-2009, 10:25 AM
I don't have a multimeter, and don't plan to buy one since I won't need it besides this one time. But I'll check the wiring first. If anyone has any insight into my question I'd appreciate it.

Thanks.

Multimeters are cheap and a useful investment for any homeowner that is going to be working on their own house.

unit28
03-17-2009, 10:33 AM
And I was wondering why for MN irrigationist,
you have to have low voltage training....I got it now.

Wet_Boots
03-17-2009, 11:50 AM
Can't afford a ten dollar multimeter? (five bucks, if you're near a Harbor Freight store)

Piker :hammerhead:

AI Inc
03-17-2009, 11:59 AM
Then cheat and use a solonoid , piker.

unit28
03-17-2009, 01:08 PM
if Bob can't afford a multimeter,
where's the logic in buying another soilinoid?

I mean , you and I can cheat but, ya know

just askin

Kiril
03-17-2009, 01:10 PM
if Bob can't afford a multimeter,
where's the logic in buying another soilinoid?

I mean , you and I can cheat but, ya know

just askin

If I didn't want to buy a multimeter, I would take one of the known good solenoids he does have and use that to test.

Waterit
03-17-2009, 01:27 PM
OP won't come off $5 for a meter?

At this point, I'm going to find something a little more worthwhile to do with my time, like trying to find ML's lost 521 thread. Hope I have better luck finding the thread than he did finding the valve:laugh:

ARGOS
03-17-2009, 01:28 PM
Hell...spend the $30 on a good one. Break the bank.

Kiril
03-17-2009, 01:36 PM
Hell...spend the $30 on a good one. Break the bank.

Or use the real poor mans tester.

http://www.foundshit.com/images/tongue-tattoo.jpg

unit28
03-17-2009, 01:38 PM
If I didn't want to buy a multimeter, I would take one of the known good solenoids he does have and use that to test.

I don't think he knows where the shut off valve is. That's my point

Bob you got an extra solinoid?

Robert100
03-17-2009, 07:44 PM
For $5-10 it would be worth it. I thought they cost more, like $30-60 which I wouldn't want to spend on a tool I'm only going to use once. Especially if there are other ways of testing the connection.

I do not have an extra solenoid, but I could use one from the front yard. So I just screw in the new one and attach it to the wiring and it should work?

Mike Leary
03-17-2009, 07:51 PM
For $5-10 it would be worth it. I thought they cost more, like $30-60 which I don't like to spend on something I'm only going to use once.

Are there no pros that could figure it out in 10 minutes in your neck of the woods. ?

Wet_Boots
03-17-2009, 07:55 PM
Yeah, buy the damn multimeter and get the hell off the internet.

TRILAWNCARE
03-17-2009, 08:00 PM
For $5-10 it would be worth it. I thought they cost more, like $30-60 which I wouldn't want to spend on a tool I'm only going to use once. Especially if there are other ways of testing the connection.

I do not have an extra solenoid, but I could use one from the front yard. So I just screw in the new one and attach it to the wiring and it should work?

If the solenoids are the same it should. Just make sure you turn the water off to the system, before you pull the solenoids. And put the suspected bad solenoid from the back yard, in the valve in the front yard, too plug the hole before you turn the water back on. Or you will create all kinds of new problems.

Mike Leary
03-17-2009, 08:06 PM
If the solenoids are the same it should. Just make sure you turn the water off to the system, before you pull the solenoids. And put the suspected bad solenoid from the back yard, in the valve in the front yard, too plug the hole before you turn the water back on. Or you will create all kinds of new problems.

Cripes, this thread is getting so convoluted, if I was in the area I'd stop-by for free just to put a end to it.

Dripit good
03-17-2009, 08:12 PM
Yeah, buy the damn multimeter and get the hell off the internet.

x2

BTW.......Rotar, you crack me up man.

You are a Jewel. :weightlifter:

Mike Leary
03-17-2009, 08:28 PM
[QUOTE=Dripit good;You are a Jewel.[/QUOTE]

Fools gold.

ARGOS
03-17-2009, 09:07 PM
For $5-10 it would be worth it. I thought they cost more, like $30-60 which I wouldn't want to spend on a tool I'm only going to use once. Especially if there are other ways of testing the connection.

If nothing else you have a battery tester for life.

mitchgo
03-18-2009, 03:43 AM
I don't think he knows where the shut off valve is. That's my point

Bob you got an extra solinoid?

Dude.. did you even read half of the pages on this thread???

And don't tell the guy to get a multimeter... If he does that it's going to be a step by step process on how to use it for us to help him!

I agree with dana... We have ruled out a lot.. but now there are too many variables and the guy should get a irrigation pro who can figure it all out ( Hopefully if electrical TOPS in 30 min and be able to fix the situation ( Sense everything is exposed )TOPS 1 hour and half...

unit28
03-18-2009, 11:00 AM
Hey Bob, open the solinoid in the back and shut the mainline off.
See if that will stop the flow to the heads on that zone.
we'll see what happens from there.

Wet_Boots
03-18-2009, 11:03 AM
I knew this inquiry belonged in the Homeowner Advice forum.....

Kiril
03-18-2009, 11:14 AM
Hey Bob, open the solinoid in the back and shut the mainline off.
See if that will stop the flow to the heads on that zone.
we'll see what happens from there.

...............................

I did not find any other valves hidden anywhere. There is a gold colored (possibly brass) "thing" attached to some pvc piping, it has a knob on top however the knob does not turn.

We have already established it is either the solenoids, control wire, or controller problem. He can turn the valves on manually, just not with the controller.

Since he said he was thinking about replacing the valves, I would take it one step further and replace the controller since that is probably a POS as well. If it doesn't work then .... there is only one thing left to replace.

Wet_Boots
03-18-2009, 11:19 AM
Sell the house.

unit28
03-18-2009, 12:08 PM
pages 1-7...errr 8?... you guys havn't established much IMO.

Bob, go ask the neighbor to find your isolation valve.
Heck all you other guys....all you need to do is shut the house water off, if you can't find a sprinkler isolation valve....duh.

Wet_Boots
03-18-2009, 12:16 PM
Check the blinker fluid.

unit28
03-18-2009, 12:29 PM
can't find the valve:)

Kiril
03-18-2009, 02:10 PM
pages 1-7...errr 8?... you guys havn't established much IMO.

Bob, go ask the neighbor to find your isolation valve.
Heck all you other guys....all you need to do is shut the house water off, if you can't find a sprinkler isolation valve....duh.

Not following you here. We have established water is present at the valves. What is the point in turning off the water?

Well fellows, I just couldn't wait. I went outside just now and checked the valves by turning the solenoid while holding the grey ring.

The first one I tried, I unscrewed the solenoid completely without any results. But there was evidence of water underneath the solenoid. And I didn't realize this before now, but I actually have 4 valves in the back yard. The other 3 valves worked when i used this method. Turning the solenoid while holding the grey ring I got water pressure and the sprinklers because pumping water. Now that I know this, what now? How do I get this to happen under the timer's control?

The problem is now 1 valve which cannot be triggered manually and all rear valves not working via the controller. This either points to bad control wire (someone put a shovel through it), improper wiring, or a bad controller. I for one find it hard to believe 4 solenoids would go bad at the same time, but then I guess nothing is impossible.

The one that won't operate manually could be a number of things, least of which, it is not hooked up to anything.

unit28
03-18-2009, 03:58 PM
Not following you here. We have established water is present at the valves. What is the point in turning off the water?



.
I want him to turn it off, find good handles that won't break before he turns it off too. Or worse, he plays with those friggen solinoids so much he has no way to shut the water off after he looses an o ring or strips the threads.

It's what I always do before jacking around with the unknowns. It makes a good starting point in all repairs for valve issues. Or maybe, just maybe, I'm low on blinker fluid

Dripit good
03-18-2009, 06:23 PM
I blink alot because I have a tic.

mitchgo
03-18-2009, 10:42 PM
I want him to turn it off, find good handles that won't break before he turns it off too. Or worse, he plays with those friggen solinoids so much he has no way to shut the water off after he looses an o ring or strips the threads.

It's what I always do before jacking around with the unknowns. It makes a good starting point in all repairs for valve issues. Or maybe, just maybe, I'm low on blinker fluid

so you want him to turn it off and find good handles.. that is it huh?

I guess there is no need for a irrigation specialist to come with the water off!

unit28
03-18-2009, 10:58 PM
close but . Isolate the system as any good irritator will ...
then go for broke. why in christ's great world would anyone attempt to pull a solinoid without isolating the system?
And a good handle is hard to find...I guess. I'm saying the isolating valve should have good handles before you just crank 'em. I carry spares, as I'm sure we all do. For homeowner's {Bob} it's just an FYI

ARGOS
03-18-2009, 11:00 PM
Why in Christ's great world is this thread still going?

TRILAWNCARE
03-18-2009, 11:07 PM
Why in Christ's great world is this thread still going?

What else is there to talk about?

Wet_Boots
03-18-2009, 11:08 PM
Less like a thread and more like the Living Dead....

http://img139.imageshack.us/img139/2262/calvinandhobbeslivingdeqn0.gif

unit28
03-18-2009, 11:10 PM
It's my fault, I ran out of de-caffe

ARGOS
03-18-2009, 11:11 PM
Always loved Calvin.

Mike Leary
03-19-2009, 12:17 PM
Nice and sunny here in Las Cruces, me and the Mowerman are having lunch at a great Mexican resurant today. :clapping::drinkup:

Wet_Boots
03-19-2009, 12:30 PM
What's a "resurant" :confused:

DanaMac
03-19-2009, 12:33 PM
What's a "resurant" :confused:

Too many margaritas and Mexican beers already

Mike Leary
03-19-2009, 12:35 PM
Too many margaritas and Mexican beers already

Yup, started too early, plus the only place I can get wi-fi is outside the mo/ho and I can hardly read the screen!

DanaMac
03-19-2009, 12:39 PM
and I can hardly read the screen!

That too goes back to the margs and beer :drinkup: :laugh:

Waterit
03-19-2009, 04:40 PM
Thank you for FINALLY taking this thread off-topic.

Robert100
04-22-2009, 12:15 AM
Hi everyone, I'm back, I took some time off from figuring this stuff out because there were other issues with the house I was working on. This past weekend I've come back to the sprinklers.

So I finally found the control valve to the back yard, which I am able to turn on and off. If you remember, I am able to manually turn the valves on and off with ease now, so the problem has nothing to do with piping or water flow.

The first thing I did was check the wiring. All of the wiring is correct. Next I bought a new valve and tried out the brand new solenoid on the old valve with no luck.

I still haven't bought the multimeter, mainly because I thought a new solenoid would do the trick. Now I highly suspect the main wiring line is bad, but at the same time I wonder how it could have happened.

Over the course of the last couple of weeks I was digging a trench in order to move one of the sprinkler lines back a couple feet so it would be flush with my new concrete patio. In doing so, I actually exposed the main wiring line (did not damage it though). I found out the line goes under my concrete patio slab.

Now I have a few questions. If the line actually has been severed, and the point where it was severed is under the slab, how do I fix the problem? And, where does this line connect to my controller? I see where it goes into the controller from the wall, but I'm thinking there is a line in the front yard, and one in the back. How is there only one going into the controller? BTW, the line for the controller comes from my wall in my garage, but where does it go out? Is it time to hire a professional? What do you think a pro will charge?

Also, if the line was not severed, what are some other potential issues? What if I'm not getting power to the line, but the line has not been severed? Is this possible?

Any help is appreciated

mitchgo
04-22-2009, 12:42 AM
That is a ton of questions!

So I don't entirely feel like reading through 10 pages to get the answers if they even have been.

But lets get a few things straight now.
So you now have water on you front yard And your back yard. You can now manually turn on every single valve.

Can you turn on any valves from the front yard with the controller?

Do Any of the valves turn on in the back yard with the controller?

If there is only one wire bundle at the controller how many wires does it hold as well how many wires run into the valves in the back yard?
( Many people do this, IE 13 strand at the controller and then to save money branch off 7 strand to valve boxes ect.. )

What valve/ solenoid did you use to try to replace it?

... girlfriend yellin... be back in a few

TRILAWNCARE
04-22-2009, 01:28 AM
How did you check all the wires and determine that they were correct?

If the wire is severed under the patio you will need to either run a complete new wire from the controller to the affected valve or valves, or dig on both sides of the patio to expose the bad wire, so you can splice a new wire onto the broken wire and bury a new wire around the patio to connect the two. It's not exactly rocket science. If you do the splice repair be sure to us direct burial splices, don't use tape or ordinary wire nuts.

My suggestion is. Go buy a multi-meter, so you can check to see if your getting voltage at the controller terminals and each valves. Perhaps you have a bad controller and your just wasting your time looking at the wires..... Have you tried switching the wires on the controller from the zones that you know are good with zones that are bad, to see if this does anything. Really a cheap $10.00 radio shack multi-meter will save you a lot of headache.

Or else just hire someone to come fix the system and quiet pissing around.

mitchgo
04-22-2009, 01:38 AM
Or else just hire someone to come fix the system and quiet pissing around.

I Agree.
A multimeter would be nice, but you have to know how to use it and you need to know what your looking for.

I don't know your local company prices are. But since you have narrowed it down to more of an electrical problem it shouldn't take an experience irrigation person more then an Hour and half tops. And most likely less time to at least diagnose the issue ( Meaning it may take more time to fix the problem given the situation)

so is 60-200$ worth your time to have your issue solved? Walk around with them, let them figure out the issue and have them explain it to you what the problem is / was . It's easy to explain the basics, but now it's best to leave it to an expert.

mitchgo
04-22-2009, 01:46 AM
Also, if the line was not severed, what are some other potential issues? What if I'm not getting power to the line, but the line has not been severed? Is this possible?


This is quite possible, If the wire has a nick in it or the wire splices/connections that copper will eventually oxidize and resist most of your voltage.

I Had a job like this the other day. None of the valves worked, I suspected a common wire break. I Traced out the wire to find the valves, all the wiring looked good. I did a voltage test at the controller and at the valves ( Disconnected) to find out I am only getting 2 volts at the valves. So then I Bust out the Fault locator and find that the nick in the wireing is under his patio.. Now I had to bid it out to re-do 150' of wiring from the controller to the valve box.

Waterit
04-22-2009, 02:08 AM
Really a cheap $10.00 radio shack multi-meter will save you a lot of headache.

Or else just hire someone to come fix the system and quiet pissing around.

There it is...

Wet_Boots
04-22-2009, 03:37 AM
If he can't afford ten bucks for a multimeter, I suspect he will never be able to afford to pay for service.

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-22-2009, 08:40 AM
I feel sad today.....

TRILAWNCARE
04-22-2009, 10:17 AM
I feel sad today.....

Why is that?

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-22-2009, 10:29 AM
Why is that?

Old unresolved threads that the customer didn't act on the advice already given have a way of doing that to me.

Waterit
04-22-2009, 11:21 AM
Old unresolved threads that the customer didn't act on the advice already given have a way of doing that to me.

You'll need to change your avatar to "Unhappy Camper"...

Pop the top on a few Shiners, you'll get to feeling better in no time:)

Wet_Boots
04-22-2009, 11:35 AM
Maybe the OP can get a stimulus-fund grant for the fiver he needs for a Harbor Freight multimeter.

Robert100
04-22-2009, 01:05 PM
Thanks to the people who are still trying to be helpful. I'll check the wiring at the controller today. Will get a multimeter as I stated in my previous post.

Wet_Boots
04-22-2009, 01:31 PM
Dude, we beat this problem to death over a month ago, and you can't spring five or ten bucks for a multimeter? Welcome to Pikerville. Population = you.

Robert100
04-22-2009, 02:38 PM
Now I've mentioned it 3 times that I'm buying a multilmeter today. Get a life.

Kiril
04-22-2009, 02:43 PM
Now I've mentioned it 3 times that I'm buying a multilmeter today. Get a life.

Just tell him to go hang himself with his faded neckties. :laugh:

Wet_Boots
04-22-2009, 03:19 PM
Check the blinker fluid.

ARGOS
04-22-2009, 03:38 PM
Northern California should break away from the south. We'll take the water, food, and trees with us.

Robert100
04-22-2009, 05:19 PM
So I am now in possession of a multimeter. I'll check the wire connection at the site of the valve when I get home.

Wet_Boots
04-22-2009, 05:27 PM
RTFM to begin with, then try to remember what's already been posted in this thread.

You piker (http://www.lawnsite.com/search.php?searchid=3825627) :hammerhead:

Mike Leary
04-22-2009, 06:44 PM
Dump this thread or I'll start posting pics of my Fluke VOM.

Robert100
04-23-2009, 02:20 PM
So at the controller I'm getting a reading of over 25 v.

At the valve, I'm getting very low readings, the highest was 8. The interesting thing is whether or not the zone is on, the wires are giving the same reading. So the blue wire gave an 8 every time a new zone was started, the orange wire had the worse rating, about 1 or 2.

TRILAWNCARE
04-23-2009, 02:43 PM
So at the controller I'm getting a reading of over 25 v.

At the valve, I'm getting very low readings, the highest was 8. The interesting thing is whether or not the zone is on, the wires are giving the same reading. So the blue wire gave an 8 every time a new zone was started, the orange wire had the worse rating, about 1 or 2.

With out knowing what color wires are on what terminals, it is a little hard to understand what the blue and orange wires are for. Can you take some close up pictures of the wiring in your controller, and at the valves.

Make a list of what color wire is connected to each terminal on the controller, including the common (which might have more than one), and post it here. Then make a list of what each color of both wires that are connected to each valve, also tell us if they are in the front yard or the back yard, and post it here also.


You might have a bad common wire going to your back yard valves, or your wiring is crossed up somewhere.

If you have some spare wire that you can stretch (above ground) from the common on the controller to the valves in the back yard, this might be a easiest way to check to see if your common is bad.

Robert100
04-23-2009, 03:16 PM
The blue and orange were both plugged attached to the controller. There was also a red which got about a 5 reading.

As far as the ground, I could try running a long wire, but it will have to wait until the weekend.

The controller is different from what I've seen pictures of online. For instance, this is what I see online:

http://media.rd.com/dynamic/98/03/89/200704_SprinklerFix_011.jpg

Whereas my controller has these little plugs with multiple prongs that had the wires plugged into them. The plug can be attached or removed from the controller. I'm sure you know what I'm talking about. I checked the seating of both the ground wires, they look good. They're both in the same hole, is that normal?

Also, something weird that I noticed was the grouping of wires that goes to the back yard had several more wires than what was needed at the controller. I'm talking 10-15. There were purple wires and whatnot, but at the valve it looks like a normal sprinkler wire with seven different colored wires.

TRILAWNCARE
04-23-2009, 03:37 PM
Like I said, take some close up pictures of the wires on the controller and the valves... Something in the wiring is screwed up.

Also let us know what make and model the controller is. Not sure if you already posted that or not. But I'm to lazy to look back through all the posts to see.

AI Inc
04-23-2009, 03:44 PM
It sounds like its an esp 4-6-or 8. Test your output at the controller ( a sucky task with that controller and 1 of the reasons I hate them but thats another thread) See what it is putting out at the source. Ah just saw ya already did that . Sounds like a broken wire , or it never was wired correctly to begin with.

Robert100
04-23-2009, 04:02 PM
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3604/3468353807_d6d8fd8478.jpg

The three wires on the right are the ones I'm having issues with. They go to the backyard. In my earlier post, I mentioned that the blue wire was getting a 10 reading. That is absolutely true. But when I mentioned that the blue wire was connected I was mistaken. So how can I be getting the highest reading from the blue wire if it is not connected?

Also, the controller model is a Toro TMC-212

The manual is right here: http://www.toro.com.au/files//tmc212_usegd_gb.pdf

TRILAWNCARE
04-23-2009, 04:24 PM
Your most likely getting a reading on the blue wire because you have it crossed with one of the zone wires on the valve.

Now take a picture of the valve wiring. A good close up picture so you can tell which wire color is going to which valve, both the common and the hots.

But first lets establish that you do have your one white common wire in the back yard tied to one of the wires on each of the three valves. So in other words this one white wire will go to each valve, or four wires tied together in one wire nut. Just like it shows in the wiring diagram on page 7 of the manual.

If I'm not mistaken I thought you had a total of 7 valves. But your only showing 6 zones connected to the controller. Do you have any clue as to this?

Robert100
04-23-2009, 08:00 PM
I could take a close up picture of the wiring, but does it really matter? I tested each of the wires by touching one of the multimeter's prongs on the white wire and another one on a colored wire. The blue wire was the only one with a halfway decent readout.

As for the 7 valves on a 6 zone controller. I noticed that, and was going to ask about it later. But I'm just focused on making 6 zones work. I assume that if you can't combine two valves to one zone, then the previous owner probably just manually turned on one of the valves. Most likely the manual valve was the one that turns on the sprinklers at the top of the slope in our back yard. I can't imagine those needing to be on very often.

The reason I'm ot sure is because when I moved in the wiring connections were in total disarray. They had been exposed in the SoCal desert heat for 4 months, and a few had fallen apart.

The thing I don't understand is that when I first moved in, one or two would come on automatically. I know I didn't cause the wire to get severed, so I'm not sure what could have happened between then and now.

Wet_Boots
04-23-2009, 08:40 PM
Voltage readings are for pikers. A pro checks resistance, like we told you a month ago.

TRILAWNCARE
04-23-2009, 08:56 PM
I moved into my house a short while ago. When I moved in, the 3 zones of sprinklers in the front yard worked, and one of the three in the back worked. After a short while, the one in the back yard stopped working as well.

I have since rewired the sprinklers, thinking that would solve the problem but it didn't. The 3 in the back yard still don't work. I tried turning them on manually but they won't come on. I'm wondering what could possibly be the problem. I assume the main line is connected properly because the one zone worked for a short period of time.

Does anyone have a clue on how I can fix this on my own?

Thanks,
Robert

In your very first post you wrote that you "rewired the sprinklers"

Your rewiring has me to think that something is crossed or wired wrong. It is pretty obvious that you have no clue as to how electricity works, or how valves should be wired.

I could take a close up picture of the wiring, but does it really matter? I tested each of the wires by touching one of the multimeter's prongs on the white wire and another one on a colored wire. The blue wire was the only one with a halfway decent readout.

As for the 7 valves on a 6 zone controller. I noticed that, and was going to ask about it later. But I'm just focused on making 6 zones work. I assume that if you can't combine two valves to one zone, then the previous owner probably just manually turned on one of the valves. Most likely the manual valve was the one that turns on the sprinklers at the top of the slope in our back yard. I can't imagine those needing to be on very often.

The reason I'm ot sure is because when I moved in the wiring connections were in total disarray. They had been exposed in the SoCal desert heat for 4 months, and a few had fallen apart.

The thing I don't understand is that when I first moved in, one or two would come on automatically. I know I didn't cause the wire to get severed, so I'm not sure what could have happened between then and now.

All it takes is one misplaced wire and nothing is going to work. Now quite pissing around and go take some pictures. If there is nothing obviously wrong with your wiring job, then we will start checking each zone with the meter. It will be a lot easier to tell you what to do if I have a picture, but it is a little difficult to tell you which wires to check when I'm 2000 miles away and, I cant see them.

As for your 7th valve, you can add a expansion module to the controller if you want to automate it. It plugs in to the right of the others that are already in the controller.

DanaMac
04-23-2009, 08:59 PM
Hey Tri - I'm thinking the common at the valves is not wired properly. I thought this days ago, but stayed out of it.

By now a sprinkler technician would have diagnosed and repaired it and the OP would have had more time to play with the kids or smooch with the spouse/partner. And not get aggravated at us.

TRILAWNCARE
04-23-2009, 09:07 PM
Hey Tri - I'm thinking the common at the valves is not wired properly. I thought this days ago, but stayed out of it.

By now a sprinkler technician would have diagnosed and repaired it and the OP would have had more time to play with the kids or smooch with the spouse/partner. And not get aggravated at us.

That's what I'm thinking also. Trying to look at the original picture of the valves in the back yard, that wiring job is just a cluster *&(&. I'm almost sure he has the common tied into a hot and two hot's on one valve. Or the common on the valve that is not used. I count 8 wire nuts that I can see. Sould be done with 5. Something is screwed up......

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3629/3345206305_7639c20420.jpg

Robert100
04-23-2009, 10:47 PM
The way I spliced it was the same way I did for the front yard. I took some extra wiring and connected each of the solenoids to each other with the extra line, then I connected the common to the spliced line.

I disconnected everything in order test the lines with the multimeter. So I will need to rewire it. I'm just not sure what connecting the lines will add to the process. If the lines aren't showing a reading without being connected to the solenoids, how will connecting them change it? I'm sorry, I really don't know much about electricity and wiring. I thought when you're diagnosing electrical issues you work your way from the source, forward. But I will do it, and I appreciate the help.

I don't understand the annoyance here, I'm just trying to take an interest in my home and fix it without calling someone to do it for me.

Robert

TRILAWNCARE
04-23-2009, 11:53 PM
The way I spliced it was the same way I did for the front yard. I took some extra wiring and connected each of the solenoids to each other with the extra line, then I connected the common to the spliced line.

I disconnected everything in order test the lines with the multimeter. So I will need to rewire it. I'm just not sure what connecting the lines will add to the process. If the lines aren't showing a reading without being connected to the solenoids, how will connecting them change it? I'm sorry, I really don't know much about electricity and wiring. I thought when you're diagnosing electrical issues you work your way from the source, forward. But I will do it, and I appreciate the help.

I don't understand the annoyance here, I'm just trying to take an interest in my home and fix it without calling someone to do it for me.

Robert

Leave everything disconnected and take a picture of what you got. We can use the meter to ohm out the wires from the controller, and you will need to tie each wire together at the valve without it being tied to the solenoid to do this one wire at a time.

Look at the manual for your meter and see if your meter has a function for continuity. Most meters will make a buzzer sound when you have continuity or when the leads shorted together. This makes it a little easier.


It will go something like this. Disconnect the three zone wires which are red, green and orange at the controller, and all wires at the valves.

Start at the valve with the red wire, tie it to the white wire. Then at the controller you test between the red and white wire. You should get a ohm reading of close to zero, and the buzzer will sound..

Test the white wire to the green and orange wire and you should get a reading of infinity (what ever the meter reads with nothing hooked to it) and no buzzer.. This zone is good.

Go to the next zone. Tie the white to the orange at the valve. Test white to orange at controller. Buzz good. Red, green no buzzer. Zone good. Go to the green. Get the idea.

Then use the ohm meter to test the solenoids. With the zone wires unhooked from the solenoids you should get a reading of about 25 ohms on each solenoid. If the solenoid is bad you will get a infinity reading (meaning its open) or a really low ohms reading 10 or lower(meaning its shorted).

After we determine that the wires and the solenoids are all good then you check the voltage at the controller. With the wires disconnected from the terminals. You will take a AC voltage reading from each zone to the common. You should get your 25 volt reading on each zone terminal when that zone is on. You could take your extra solenoid and connect it directly to the controller by hooking one wire to the common terminal and then touch the other wire to each zone terminal (when that zone is on) and see if the solenoid fires. This will tell you that the controller is putting out enough amperage to operate the solenoid.


When every thing is tested and you know it is good. Hook up the wiring at the valves properly and neatly. Connect the wires back at the controller, and see what happens. It should work.

You said that you had several wires at both the controller and I think at the valve. If the white common is bad. Maybe we can use a different wire for the common and get it working.


But first please take some pictures so we all know what were looking at and doing.

Robert100
04-24-2009, 12:13 AM
Ok, thanks for that. It makes perfect sense. I'll get some pictures tomorrow.

ARGOS
04-24-2009, 01:14 AM
Damn TriLawn...double bonus credits in the patience and step through dept.

TRILAWNCARE
04-24-2009, 01:41 AM
Damn TriLawn...double bonus credits in the patience and step through dept.

Just something about electricity that facinates me..

Is that Kiril's house I see out there in the distance. Hope his suppressors are working.....


http://digital-photography-school.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/11/imageslightning-b-1.jpg

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 07:26 AM
The way I spliced it was the same way I did for the front yard. I took some extra wiring and connected each of the solenoids to each other with the extra line, then I connected the common to the spliced line.

I disconnected everything in order test the lines with the multimeter. So I will need to rewire it. I'm just not sure what connecting the lines will add to the process. If the lines aren't showing a reading without being connected to the solenoids, how will connecting them change it? I'm sorry, I really don't know much about electricity and wiring. I thought when you're diagnosing electrical issues you work your way from the source, forward. But I will do it, and I appreciate the help.

I don't understand the annoyance here, I'm just trying to take an interest in my home and fix it without calling someone to do it for me.

Robert

This line makes me really sad today....I hate being misunderstood. My ex used this line all the time...

AI Inc
04-24-2009, 07:30 AM
14 pages of helping someone take $ away from our colleagues.You gentleman should be ashamed of yourselves.

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 07:40 AM
Lord knows there are very few irrigation techs in S. CA:rolleyes:

Having said that I enjoy reading TRI-Lawn's advice. Always good to follow a pro at work.

AI Inc
04-24-2009, 08:04 AM
ML is right , kill this thread. Its too much like trying to tell a janitor how to land the plane while there is a pilot sitting 2 rows back.

Wet_Boots
04-24-2009, 08:47 AM
check the blinker fluid


http://img26.imageshack.us/img26/1511/graetink.jpg

Kiril
04-24-2009, 10:55 AM
Just something about electricity that facinates me..

Is that Kiril's house I see out there in the distance. Hope his suppressors are working.....

Thankfully we don't get much lightning around these parts. If you like electricity then you should really dig what I am doing with my house. Given the size of the main breaker panel, how big do you think that house is?

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 10:58 AM
Thankfully we don't get much lightning around these parts. If you like electricity then you should really dig what I am doing with my house. Given the size of the main breaker panel, how big do you think that house is?

1789 sq ft on the nose.

Kiril
04-24-2009, 11:00 AM
1789 sq ft on the nose.

:laugh: Why that number, "on the nose"?

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 11:01 AM
:laugh: Why that number, "on the nose"?

Popped into my head I guess.

TRILAWNCARE
04-24-2009, 12:19 PM
Thankfully we don't get much lightning around these parts. If you like electricity then you should really dig what I am doing with my house. Given the size of the main breaker panel, how big do you think that house is?

Bring on the pictures. I like it when the other guys get all flustered when we talk electrifying (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrdblID5as4)..... :laugh:

Kiril
04-24-2009, 12:29 PM
Bring on the pictures. I like it when the other guys get all flustered when we talk electrifying (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrdblID5as4)..... :laugh:

No guess? Everyone that comes into that house says something about all the crap I got going in there.

Wanna take a stab at what this is for?

TRILAWNCARE
04-24-2009, 01:48 PM
Wet bar refrigerator with ice maker? :clapping:

WalkGood
04-24-2009, 02:21 PM
14 pages of helping someone take $ away from our colleagues.You gentleman should be ashamed of yourselves.

Weak whiner argument.... no one "took" any money from anyone. Be ashamed of yourself for making such a statement.

Nothing "wrong" with someone trying to fix it themselves. Pluck thine eyes out if reading about it bothers your sensibilities. Sheesh.

TRILAWNCARE
04-24-2009, 02:25 PM
Weak whiner argument.... no one "took" any money from anyone. Be ashamed of yourself for making such a statement.

Nothing "wrong" with someone trying to fix it themselves. Pluck thine eyes out if reading about it bothers your sensibilities. Sheesh.

I agree with you 100%. The man said the magic word "learn". I will help anyone that wants to better themselves if I can.

Kiril
04-24-2009, 02:31 PM
Wet bar refrigerator with ice maker? :clapping:

Nope, that is in a different room, and only a wine cooler with ice maker. :)

TRILAWNCARE
04-24-2009, 02:34 PM
Water feature with remote fill.

Kiril
04-24-2009, 02:40 PM
Water feature with remote fill.

........ closer ;)

TRILAWNCARE
04-24-2009, 02:49 PM
........ closer ;)

Hot tub with remote fill and temp sensing.

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 02:50 PM
A spa for a hamster...

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 02:52 PM
Weak whiner argument.... no one "took" any money from anyone. Be ashamed of yourself for making such a statement.

Nothing "wrong" with someone trying to fix it themselves. Pluck thine eyes out if reading about it bothers your sensibilities. Sheesh.

WG you and I have gone round and round on this stuff. What exactly do you do? You have more the personality of a HO than a contractor.

Kiril
04-24-2009, 02:52 PM
Hot tub with remote fill and temp sensing.

Right room ... and pretty close.

A spa for a hamster...

Right "on the money" .... until my cat eats it. :laugh:

Kiril
04-24-2009, 02:55 PM
WG you and I have gone round and round on this stuff. What exactly do you do? You have more the personality of a HO than a contractor.

Why do you say that? I encourage my clients to do stuff on their own, especially the stuff I want no part of. :laugh: I have zero problems consulting homeowners what to do with their yard, and I can charge a good chunk of change for that service.

Kiril
04-24-2009, 03:05 PM
Hot tub with remote fill and temp sensing.

One more guess before I reveal all and sign off for the day.

Robert100
04-24-2009, 03:15 PM
Why do you say that? I encourage my clients to do stuff on their own, especially the stuff I want no part of. :laugh: I have zero problems consulting homeowners what to do with their yard, and I can charge a good chunk of change for that service.

Thanks to those who stuck up for me. Besides, if you own your own business doing this type of stuff you're way ahead of me in the work-happiness dept. Getting to work outside doing this stuff is probably a lot better for you than what I do for a living (see the movie "Office Space" for an idea)

I work on this stuff on my own for two reasons really. The first is I don't have a lot of money and I enjoy the pride of getting this stuff done while learning about what I'm doing. I really knew nothing about anything when I first moved into my home. I had never lived in a house before, so when there was a problem you just called the landlord. It's interesting, they should call all homes fixer uppers because this home was pretty nice when I moved in, but man have I don't a lot of work so far in getting it up to my family's needs.

And the second reason is that it feels good to get out of the house and do something outside of the mundane. I'm sure that these things are mundane for a lot of you because you do it for a living, but for the average homeowner there's still that sense of excitement in learning how to fix these problems.

I appreciate your help. I feel a lot better now.

TRILAWNCARE
04-24-2009, 04:14 PM
Smart toilet with heated seat.

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 05:35 PM
Why do you say that? I encourage my clients to do stuff on their own, especially the stuff I want no part of. :laugh: I have zero problems consulting homeowners what to do with their yard, and I can charge a good chunk of change for that service.

Yeah but WG just wants to give the consulting away. I'd love to stand over a HO all day and ride his azz and charge him out the wazoo.

DanaMac
04-24-2009, 06:06 PM
I'd love to stand over a HO all day and ride his azz and charge him out the wazoo.

Oh now wouldn't that be the best.
"dig faster fool"
"cut it. couple it. clamp it. and go. Hurry hurry hurry"
"What do you mean you don't know how to use a multi-meter?"
"The leak is there somewhere. keep digging"
"Now go make me a sandwich while I write up the bill"

WalkGood
04-24-2009, 08:32 PM
Yeah but WG just wants to give the consulting away.

A far stretch even for you. :nono:

I'd love to stand over a HO all day and ride his azz and charge him out the wazoo.

You'll have to go to a different online forum for that, twinkle toes. :eek:

WalkGood
04-24-2009, 08:34 PM
Wanna take a stab at what this is for?

A toilet/bidet with plug-in heated seat and internet access.

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-24-2009, 10:11 PM
A far stretch even for you. :nono:



You'll have to go to a different online forum for that, twinkle toes. :eek:

I meant HER ......

Sprinkus
04-24-2009, 10:21 PM
Maybe he should try stomping on the ground along the wiring path while the controller is running.
I've dealt with wiring where all you had to do was walk across the yard in the right place and the system would start working.
It always ended up being wiring splices made with electrical tape! :wall

Robert100
04-24-2009, 11:59 PM
Here are the closeup pics of the valves. I tried saving them in a very large format for ease of viewing but for some reason flickr isn't showing them the way they were saved. Let me know if you need them bigger and I'll find another site to host.


http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3316/3472558870_c09b2202ce.jpg


http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3311/3472557974_a9d9a9a386.jpg

TRILAWNCARE
04-25-2009, 12:38 AM
Upload the pictures directly to the site. Click on the paper clip on the top of the editor and you can browse your disk for the pictures and upload them. Then once they are uploaded close the upload picture window and click the paper clip again, click on each of the names of the pictures that you uploaded and they will be inserted into the post. Click on the "Preview Post" to make sure they are.

It would be nice to see big close ups of the wiring. It looks like some of the wires are still tied together but it is hard to tell which goes where. It won't be important to see the wiring until you hook it all back together, to make sure nothing is crossed. But that will only be after you check everything with the meter.

Anyway did you use your meter to ohm out the three zone wires and the common like I described earlier?

mitchgo
04-25-2009, 01:02 AM
First thing you need to do is simplify your wiring.

Take one wire from every valve and wire it to the common. So 5 wires into one nut.. ONLY!!! Take out all of those extra ones that splice into the common. The picture isn't the best but after zooming in I see that you have the common side of the valve with individual nuts. 5 wires will fit into that little nut....

Then wire the remaining wires ( Per valve) to the wire color accordingly to the controller... Then take a picture!


I also think you should take a few hours ( Maybe stay up after your wife goes to sleep) and just research up irrigation.. Google and research, At the top of the irrigation thread there is a sticky on getting started http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=156145
You say your willing to learn, I personally think a homeowner should know this Sh*t if they have an irrigation system.

Kiril
04-25-2009, 08:24 AM
Smart toilet with heated seat.

A toilet/bidet with plug-in heated seat and internet access.

Both on the right track. Power assisted toilet with a water sensor for leaks. Guess you could also use it for internet access too if you really wanted.

Wet_Boots
04-25-2009, 08:31 AM
if you ate more fiber you wouldn't need a power assist

AI Inc
04-25-2009, 08:33 AM
Both on the right track. Power assisted toilet with a water sensor for leaks. Guess you could also use it for internet access too if you really wanted.

What does it have a sensor , and if ya whip out a schlong the seat automaticly goes up?

Kiril
04-25-2009, 08:37 AM
What does it have a sensor , and if ya whip out a schlong the seat automaticly goes up?

I wish ...... :laugh: If a leak is detected the home automation system will shut off water to the house.

TRILAWNCARE
04-25-2009, 12:40 PM
I wish ...... :laugh: If a leak is detected the home automation system will shut off water to the house.

How big of leak does it take to turn off the water to the whole house?

I imagine it would shut off the water if the flapper fails to close. But will it also shut off for the whole house off if it detect a leak from the flapper seeping because of age, or can it just notify you? Could be a PIA if it keeps turning off the whole house, until you have a chance to fix it. Unless you can override it on your home automation system. Right in the middle of your nice hot shower the water turns off, because the darn crapper flapper is seeping would really suck.

Did the instructions specify to put the electrical boxes directly below the water pipe?

Now here is a good idea, a toilet with a night light. Not sure what picture "B" is, maybe someone worshiping the porcelain god.

http://gizmodo.com/assets/resources/2007/04/ASTIS.jpg

Kiril
04-25-2009, 01:08 PM
How big of leak does it take to turn off the water to the whole house?

Depends on what sensor I use.

I imagine it would shut off the water if the flapper fails to close. But will it also shut off for the whole house off if it detect a leak from the flapper seeping because of age, or can it just notify you?

Not an internal leak, an external leak ... and yes, it could notify me.

Did the instructions specify to put the electrical boxes directly below the water pipe?

Pic is deceiving, it isn't really under it, on the edge more or less.

Robert100
04-28-2009, 02:21 AM
Here is one of the pics

Robert100
04-28-2009, 02:22 AM
Here's the other. The only connections still together are some of the solenoid to common.

Kiril
04-28-2009, 09:53 AM
Looks like the mod laid waste to some good responses.

mitchgo
04-28-2009, 09:56 AM
I'm done trying to help.

Your not even reading some of our posts...

Robert100
04-28-2009, 12:20 PM
If you're talking about the post asking me to connect the wires and test the OHM, I will be doing that next.

Wet_Boots
04-28-2009, 12:36 PM
Like anyone here is going to hold their breath waiting.....

Robert100
04-28-2009, 12:48 PM
Last night I was reading through the forum and I came across some of the threads where you talk about crazy house calls, and PITA's. I loved the one about the naked Asian siphoning off a HOA's water supply. Pretty hilarious. My wife tells me that her boss (who used to be a lineman at Edison) would go out to turn off a customer's power. Back in the day you had to actually get up on the pole to switch off someone's power.

So anyway, he said women would run out begging him to leave it on. He said he was offered all sorts of things, I'm sure you can imagine. But the funniest was a woman who tried to give him two live chickens.

Mike Leary
04-28-2009, 04:29 PM
Gawd, I hope for sucess with the VOM; those pics hurt my eyes. :dizzy:

mowerman111
04-28-2009, 04:48 PM
Last night I was reading through the forum and I came across some of the threads where you talk about crazy house calls, and PITA's. I loved the one about the naked Asian siphoning off a HOA's water supply. Pretty hilarious. My wife tells me that her boss (who used to be a lineman at Edison) would go out to turn off a customer's power. Back in the day you had to actually get up on the pole to switch off someone's power.

So anyway, he said women would run out begging him to leave it on. He said he was offered all sorts of things, I'm sure you can imagine. But the funniest was a woman who tried to give him two live chickens.

:confused::confused::confused: WTF? It's to late to make conversation now you've done ran everybody off! You've been working on this thing for almost two month's give it up already. :hammerhead: I could have drove there troubleshot it and fixed in the time you wasted just posting your questions and not taking any advice. :wall

Mike Leary
04-28-2009, 05:10 PM
I could have drove there troubleshot it and fixed in the time you wastedl

Hell, you and I solved one driving back from margaritaville. :clapping:

kootoomootoo
04-28-2009, 06:59 PM
. .

DanaMac
04-28-2009, 07:08 PM
. .

And this is relevant because........

Mike Leary
04-28-2009, 08:09 PM
. .

Mom and Dad buy you a computer at the toy store?

Wet_Boots
04-28-2009, 09:19 PM
Must be a boring evening at the political board.

FIMCO-MEISTER
04-28-2009, 09:43 PM
He's lost GreenT so he no longer has a brain.

mowerman111
04-29-2009, 12:28 AM
Hell, you and I solved one driving back from margaritaville. :clapping:

We sure did and we didn't even need pictures :laugh:

Robert100
05-05-2009, 10:29 PM
Ok, I connected each colored line one at a time to the white (common) line at the site of the valves and then tested the lines at the site of the controller by touching on multimeter prong to the common line and one to each colored line. The results weren't good. Only once did I get a readout other than infinity. When I connected the blue line to the white at the site of the valves and then touched the black line and the common line with the multimeter I get a "0" readout.

I thought for a second that the person who lived in my house before me might have made the blue line the common wire at the site of the valves. So I tried connecting the blue and each of the colored lines but all I got was an infinity readout.

Waterit
05-05-2009, 10:43 PM
Ok, I connected each colored line one at a time to the white (common) line at the site of the valves and then tested the lines at the site of the controller by touching on multimeter prong to the common line and one to each colored line. The results weren't good. Only once did I get a readout other than infinity. When I connected the blue line to the white at the site of the valves and then touched the black line and the common line with the multimeter I get a "0" readout.

I thought for a second that the person who lived in my house before me might have made the blue line the common wire at the site of the valves. So I tried connecting the blue and each of the colored lines but all I got was an infinity readout.

Can't believe I'm away from the board for weeks and come back to this...

1. What setting did you have the meter on?
2. What color wire was connected to the common at the controller?
3. Was the same color wire as #2 connected to each valve?
4. Now that you've broken down and blown $10 on a multimeter, will you break down further and call someone to fix this for you? Please?

Robert100
05-05-2009, 10:55 PM
1. Here is the multimeter I'm using. I used the first setting to the left of off, which os OHM X1K:

2. No wire was connected to the common at the controller. I touched one multimeter prong to the common and one to a colored wire. One after the other until I got a readout. It only worked when I had the blue wire connected to the white at the valve and I touched the white and black at the controller.

3. The valves aren't connected to anything at the moment.

4. As long as it is feasible for me to continue trying to do it on my own I will.I'll gladly call someone if you will send me the check in advance. :dancing:

Waterit
05-05-2009, 11:00 PM
1. Here is the multimeter I'm using. I used the first setting to the left of off, which os OHM X1K:

2. No wire was connected to the common at the controller. I touched one multimeter prong to the common and one to a colored wire. One after the other until I got a readout. It only worked when I had the blue wire connected to the white at the valve and I touched the white and black at the controller.

3. The valves aren't connected to anything at the moment.

4. As long as it is feasible for me to continue trying to do it on my own I will.I'll gladly call someone if you will send me the check in advance. :dancing:

1. That's correct. Nice meter, too!
2. No wire was connected to the common at the controller? Are you touching the probe to the common terminal and the other probe to a wire?
3. Sounds like nothing is connected to anything. Of course you're getting no readings.
4. My point is that you've been fooling with this for 2 months and 10 pages of posts, and are no closer to a solution. Check's in the mail.

ARGOS
05-05-2009, 11:02 PM
I'm willing to start a collection.

Waterit
05-05-2009, 11:05 PM
I'm willing to start a collection.

Appreciate the spirit, Michael!:waving:

TRILAWNCARE
05-05-2009, 11:11 PM
I will read over your meter operation closer, and see what I can come up with, or make some suggestions.

I have to go help wifey hang some pictures. Uhhhg..

For now, if you don't have any wires connected together at the valves and you test with your meter at the controller between all the wires (that are the same color at the valves, should be white and three others) you should get a infinity reading on all (no needle deflection). And you are using the right setting on the meter.

Robert100
05-05-2009, 11:21 PM
Here are the steps I used:

1. At the valves I connected one colored wire to a common wire.
2. Walk to the controller and touch one prong from the multimeter to a common wire and one to a colored wire.
3. If I get an infinite readout I connected the prong to another colored wire.
4. Repeat until I've either gotten a readout other than infinity or until I've touched every colored wire.
5. Go back to the valves and connect a different colored wire to the common and repeat steps 2-5.

The only time I got a readout other than infinity was was I had the blue wire connected to the common at the valve and I touched the white and black wires with the multimeter at the controller.

I understand it's been a long time since i started this thread, but it's not like we've been at this 3 times a day. I've been doing other things. This is my first Spring/Summer in my new house so there's plenty to do on top of the usual stuff. As far as the number of pages this thread has gotten to, the majority of the posts in here are off topic gripes. If we condensed the thread to posts where people were actually giving me feedback or asking me sprinkler related questions we'd probably have half as many pages.

DanaMac
05-05-2009, 11:28 PM
Oh my head hurts.......

Sometimes you cannot teach over the internet. It's that simple. It would take one of us 30-60 minutes to get it working.

TRILAWNCARE
05-06-2009, 12:18 AM
What ever extra color wire you have at the valves in the back yard and at the controller, make this you new common wire. Looks like there is a purple wire that is not used. Tie the purple wire to the orange wire at the valves and then use the meter to test between the purple and orange wires at the controller to see if you get a reading of 0 (needle full deflection). If so, use the purple wire to test the other color wires, like I described earlier.

If every thing test out alright, make this purple the new common wire.

Hook up to the purple wire to the common terminal along with the white wire that goes to the valves in the front yard. Hook your three valve zone wires back up at the controller.

Then at the valve if your using the purple wire. Tie one of the wires going to each valve solenoid together with the purple wire, using one wire nut. So you should have 4 wires in the one wire nut, if your using 3 valves.

Then tie each of the other wires going to the different solenoids to the other three different color wires, making sure they are the same color wires that your using at the controller.

If you don't have any luck with using a different wire for the common, then it is time to rewire the system.

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3604/3468353807_d6d8fd8478.jpg

Robert100
05-06-2009, 12:36 AM
I get what you're saying. I tried doing that with the blue, but had no luck. I especially thought the blue would work because when coupled with the white it was the only one that got a good reading. I don't have a purple wire at the valves. But I'll try some of the other colors.

TRILAWNCARE
05-06-2009, 01:18 AM
I get what you're saying. I tried doing that with the blue, but had no luck. I especially thought the blue would work because when coupled with the white it was the only one that got a good reading. I don't have a purple wire at the valves. But I'll try some of the other colors.

Some where the wires are shorted together, or someone might have spliced the different color wires together somewhere between the controller and the valve. If you are certain that the black wire is not connected to the valves in the front yard then there is no reason you should be getting any reading when using the meter between the white and the black, when you have the white and the blue tied together at the valve.

I take it that when you have all the wires disconnected at the valves, and you use the meter between all the wires at the controller you get a reading of infinity on any wire combination?

This is a little crazy, but if you have no luck with the other color wires as the common. Try using the white wire at the controller as the common, and the blue wire at the valve as the common. And use your three other color wires as your zone wires. It might just work. If not then it's time to call someone to troubleshoot it, or pull a new wire.....

I guess on last ditch effort would be to hook up the orange wire to a zone, terminal at the controller, and the white wire on the common terminal. Turn that zone on, and then using the AC volt setting on the meter, take a reading between the orange wire at the valve, and all the other wires to see if you can get any reading. Use the setting that would be two notches (50) to the right of off on your meter.

Wet_Boots
05-06-2009, 07:30 AM
Run new wiring, then take this thread behind the barn and shoot it.

FIMCO-MEISTER
05-06-2009, 08:26 AM
Run new wiring, then take this thread behind the barn and shoot it.

NOW NOW..Lets give our good bud trilawn some moral support.

Wet_Boots
05-06-2009, 08:40 AM
You give suport - I need more blinker fluid.

TRILAWNCARE
05-06-2009, 09:05 AM
Use the setting that would be two notches (50) to the right of off on your meter.

Oooopppssss. I told you to use the DC volt setting instead of the AC on the meter. The setting that you want to use would be the 50 all the way at the bottom. The one that is marked in RED.

Surprised the almighty Boots didn't catch that one.

Wet_Boots
05-06-2009, 09:07 AM
I stopped caring weeks ago.

FIMCO-MEISTER
05-06-2009, 09:19 AM
I stopped caring weeks ago.

Then don't go away mad....just go away.

No law requiring you to respond anymore. We all know your distaste for this thread by now. Isn't there some rich guy blog you can go whine on?

Wet_Boots
05-06-2009, 09:26 AM
No, I just want to make fun of this one. Almost as enjoyable as dwarf-tossing.

Kiril
05-06-2009, 10:35 AM
@OP

Use your meter on a valve you know works so you can establish what a properly working valve will do.
Work your way from the front to the back.

Wet_Boots
05-06-2009, 11:27 AM
At least the cheesy multimeter has a decent brand name

http://img162.imageshack.us/img162/7162/sperryspr311a.jpg