Irrigation System - Major Modification

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by Sierra9093, Sep 30, 2013.

  1. Sierra9093

    Sierra9093 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 21

    This is from SE-Michigan. I recently got a request to make some major changes to an irrigation system for a set of condominiums. There are 15 units in this complex and the irrigation system is structured to have a total of 5 separate irrigation systems, with each system irrigating three connected yard/landscapes. The system design is not bad, except the installer placed the five separate back-flows and timers tied to 5 individual resident water supplies. This causes a lot of confusion when the sprinklers are turned on or off and during the irrigation season when the water bills have to be manually calculated and separated from the residents water usage.

    Client wants to end this arrangement separate the irrigation water supply from that of the residents, giving the irrigation its own water supply/water meter(s) and billing. Each condo is it's own house connected to each other and there is no utility building on the complex. I figure that the simplest and least expensive way to do this would be to build a utility building to house the sprinkler components that need Winter protection and pipe the water supply lines that were formally from the individual residents water supply to the valve boxes to the utility building for distribution back to the valve boxes. The problem with this and that I could uses some advice and guidance on is that I would have to pull or trench piping from the valve boxes to the utility building and back to the valve boxes (or not), and that will involve pulling and trenching through terrain that is flush with sprinkler piping and other irrigation infrastructure, which may also include the usual cable/electrical and other utility lines, but I am mostly concerned about the sprinkler lines.

    I guess one of my questions is should I just plow and slice through the lines that are there and just repair them as I need to, or is there a better way to accomplish this. Anybody ever ran into a situation like this? This is a project for next Spring, but I want to get a head start on the direction I should go. I would be willing to collaborate or subcontract some of this work out, but of course the sc would have to sign a no-compete agreement. Thanks in advance for your input folks!
     
  2. djagusch

    djagusch LawnSite Platinum Member
    from MN
    Posts: 4,225

    I have similar hoa's. All of them have ended up putting a seperate water meter inside the house for the sprinklers. Guessing this is the cheapest way to seperate it out. Have a plumber come in and get them done.

    The whole electricity of the controller comes up time to time. When I state its about the same usage of a alarm clock they don't really care then.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  3. Sierra9093

    Sierra9093 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 21

    Thanks, The controllers electrical usage have never been a problem, but the water bill is. It would be much easier to split off the systems into each unit, but the association picks up the cost for the upkeep, including irrigation. Thanks again pal!
     
  4. ArTurf

    ArTurf LawnSite Gold Member
    Male, from Ark
    Posts: 3,436

    Since the electricity is not an issue how about just going with dedicated meters for each system. Then total the 5 water bills and divide them by 15 during the watering season. This would be the less damaging solution to me.
     
  5. Sierra9093

    Sierra9093 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 21

    As I said, of course it would be much easier to split off the systems into each unit, for their own separate meter, but the association picks up the cost for the upkeep, including irrigation. Residents are not responsible for the irrigation cost. The association is and they want a separate water system for the irrigation system with it's own meter. That means I have to sever those lines going into peoples basements and reroute them to a central location to be connected to the water supply. I am going to propose a heated (minimally) utility building somewhere on the premise for that purpose. What I am trying to figure out is the best way to run the lines there without butchering up the lawn and a whole lota lateral sprinkler lines. Thanks again for your input!
     
  6. irritation

    irritation LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,221

    Have the HOA call the water co. and see if they can put separate meters next to the meters that are tapped for irrigation. Would be easy to switch them over if they are close. Or
    Hire a directional boring co. to put sleeves in the location you need. You could also use the sleeves for wiring if you want a central controller.
     
  7. 1idejim

    1idejim LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,308

    How about a picture of the property so the forum can get an idea of what this project entails? These 5 units could be in any configuration and the whereabouts of the potential POC is undetermined.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  8. irritation

    irritation LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,221

    What he said...^ The Field Marshal is right, we can't see the whole picture.
    [​IMG]
     
  9. Sierra9093

    Sierra9093 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 21

    Putting meters is no doable because the main problem is involving the residents. As it is now, the main shut offs are in the basements, as well as connected to the respective residents meter. Splitting the WS and just putting another meter in would mean that the shut offs would still be in their basements. They want the whole deal moved out of their basements AND off their meters.

    1idejim, I will try to get some type drawing or diagram, that's a good idea. PS controllers are on the outside of each respective residents house, so that's not an issue either UNLESS they object to the electricity being used by the controllers, which is tiny. But if they do object, then the controllers would have to be relocated as well, and that would be some major work and major money.

    Directional boring sound like a good idea, but why would I have them run sleeves instead of poly?
     
  10. 1idejim

    1idejim LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,308

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