Equipment Failures?

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by SamIV, Sep 26, 2003.

  1. SamIV

    SamIV LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 324

    Been doing irrigation installs for the last four years. Don't do a ton of intstalls but everything I installed just keeps on working.
    Have very few problems to think of. I have used Toro, Hunter, Nelson, Rainbird, and Weathermatic. Due to manufacturer's defects, have replaced only two items. A Toro nozzle and one of those remote Nelson actuators. Was pretty new to the business and tried different distributors which carried different products.

    Looking for some input on items that are just problematic. From fittings, to sprays, valves, controllers, rotors, to tools. Anything that you can think of. I know some of you are brand loyal, and have disdain for other brands. Not looking for this. So let's not totally bash a manufacturer, just items to stay away from or maybe items you praise.

    Thanks
    Sam
     
  2. JeffY

    JeffY LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 324

    One of the first things I don't really like are Toro gear drives. They are a pain to adjust, and most of the time when I try adjusting them, I end up damaging the gears so I always end up replacing the heads with Hunter PGP heads. Hunter heads very reliable, and very easy to adjust as all it takes is a "key" to adjust the left stop.

    Earlier this year we switched from Rainbird ESP clocks to Hunter Pro-C. The main advantage for this was it allowed us to go up to 12 zones without changing the clock. All that was required was an module for every 3 stations. I have now read up on the new Rainbird module clock that is very similiar to Hunter Pro-C, except it has a test feature on it. It is also cheaper to buy according to our distributor. We have stayed on Hunter Pro-C due to it's remote capability, and easy to understand User's Manual for the client.

    We have always used Irritrol 2400T Valves for our residential applications. The simplicity of unscrewing the top off to access the diagphram can't be beat. Also the ease of turn the selenoid on or off, or even the bleed screw, is by far better than most valves I come across.
     
  3. greenworldh20

    greenworldh20 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 659

    i agree. i like pro c's, irritrol valves and pgps. i also like i 20s, hunter jar top valves and hunter icc timers. we also like hunter wire less rain sensors. just do not use on new sod lawns...long story.

    brian
     
  4. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,156

    We used to have massive troubles with the RB T-Bird heads. I do like the 5000 rotors but still am nervous due to the T-Bird fiasco.

    Don't like any Toro rotor. Or any other Toro product actually. Part of it is preference, and part is due to replacing the older spray heads due to leakage at the wiper seal, replacing rotors because they stop turning or can't adjust, or just hate the timers

    RB Dv valves close down fast and can cause water hammer. Hunter and Irritirol valves closes much slower and softer.

    Hunter PGP rotors are the most reliable residential style rotor out there.

    I like the new RB ESP modular timer a lot.

    Don't like the Nelson rotor because they are time consuming to adjust. You can't manually turn the turret back and forth.
     
  5. SamIV

    SamIV LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 324

    I also use the Hunter Pro C, Pro Sprays with Rain Bird nozzles, and PGV jar top valves. I use all K-Rain rotors. These have a great spray pattern and are a breeze to set. It's called the Pro Plus . Same as the Irritrol CR-500, Toro Super 800 (New), and Virtual Rain Rotors. Have had some in the field for 3 years with no failures. Have a 5" pop up height and come with 5 year warranty. Less expensive than the PGP. You guys should give these a try. They also make a neat short range rotor, Mini-Pro Spray, and also has a 5 year warranty.

    I just replaced 5 PGP's with the Pro Plus in my brothers yard which were only 3 years old. All were leaking badly. Could have been due to the design of system. All laterals run with half inch class 200 pvc. Eight rotors on one zone and 6 on others with sprays on the same zone as rotors. Same company did the whole subdivision. Neighbors having the same problem.

    Thanks
    Sam
     
  6. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,156

    8 rotors off 1/2" laterals? they must be nozzled way down.

    The PGP to me has been the most reliable rotor I've seen. No contest. They are the most common in our area as well. And cost wise, i find my price pretty competitive.
     
  7. SamIV

    SamIV LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 324

    No, the PGP's are using the standard number 6 nozzle. I looked at the two houses next door. Same nozzles on half inch pipe. This puts water velocity at 14 fps or better. The company who did the install has changed it's name and will not respond to calls. They were the cheapest bidder. Most arcs set at 180. I said class 200 before, but the pipe is 1/2 inch sch 40 with 3/4 inch DV valves.
    Did not check pressure, was just visiting, he lives out of state, Florida.

    Not trying to down the PGP, like I said probably due to poor system design as he is not the only one having the same problem. By no means am I an authority on PGP's. Have used the I-20. I did see PGP's operating at all 5 resorts I stayed at in Florida this year though. All of the resorts used Rain Bird 1800's and PGP's. The kids can't get enough Disney.

    Thanks,
    Sam
     
  8. JeffY

    JeffY LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 324

    There are two types of PGP heads, checked and unchecked. We'll put checked heads in on yards that have a large slope to prevent water from draining out of the line. Checked heads have a 5 year warranty and the unchecked heads have a 3 year warranty, I believe.

    Isn't the number 6 nozzle put out 2.5 to 2.9 gallons a minute? SO that's approx 20 to 24 gallons a minute. Maybe I'm missing something here but that is pretty high. We see 12 gpm on residential houses.
     
  9. greenworldh20

    greenworldh20 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 659

    pgp with check valves are i-20. they are a great rotor. we use them alot...for the extra pennys you pay, the five year warranty is great.

    brian
     
  10. SamIV

    SamIV LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 324

    Jeffy,

    You are right. Had my ditributor send out some extra nozzle trees last week to him to nozzle down. Haven't spoken to him yet to see if he's replaced them. Will call this weekend.
    I assume the inferior design caused the failure of the rotors.

    Thanks.
    Sam
     

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