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Junk in the lines

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by F6Hawk, Jul 3, 2005.

  1. F6Hawk

    F6Hawk LawnSite Member
    Posts: 195

    I understand "flooding the trenches", mostly to purge junk from the lines, and I am sure it will help settle the dirt as it is back filled. But as I built my manifolds tonight, I noticed that every joint, as I pushed the pieces together, had some plastic "shaved" off the sides as the pipe pushed into the tee. Now, since I was building the manifold inside, in air-conditioned luxury, I could reach in there and pull out all the pieces of glue/plastic that would eventually harden and turn to plastic again, but it got me wondering...

    What if I DIDN'T pull it out? Would it not end up in my valves? They being the first small orifice in the system, it seems to me that they would catch all the big stuff that tried to flow. So that made me wonder if I should take the tops off when I first flush the system, and hence my post. Is there a need to take the tops off the valve when I flood, or not? I plan on running the mainline thru the hose bibb first, to get rid of as much as possible, so it may end up being a non-issue, but I figure it is better to be safe than sorry, since I have you guys on my side.

  2. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    Are you beveling the edge's of your pipe before you glue it?


    I bevel every joint, and then clean off the shavings (it also helps to use PVC cutters and not a saw).

    I also don't flush my lines. I have no need, as I usually don't get any pipe shavings or dirt in them.

    I've found that if you do, if its dirt it sticks the DVF diaphrams open, otherwise larger stuff, like a pebble or pipe shavings get stuck in the marlex elbows, or just clog up the screens in the bottoms of the PGP's.

    Just be real carefull when your glueing your pipe, and you probably wont have any problems.

    Bring a 2' stick of pvc with you and use it to hold the pipe ends out of the trench while you install Tee's.

    Good luck :)
  3. F6Hawk

    F6Hawk LawnSite Member
    Posts: 195

    No, I don't bevel, and thus far, no saw, only cutters, so no shavings. But I gotta tell ya, no matter HOW careful you are, there will still be dirt in the lines. This just from sitting in the warehouse or out in the supply yard.
  4. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    It helps if you turn each stick verticle before using it.

    My Bevel image is apparently broken now, and I can't find another one...Oh well.
  5. Critical Care

    Critical Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,654

    I've never had problems in the valves after an installation, but have had a few heads that had to be cleaned out. And of course, those of us that typically do a bit or irrigation maintenance, know that it's all too common to see gunked up fixed spray nozzles.

    At least in my case, everything from the valves upstream I try to be especially careful not to pick up any debris. And a bit like what JonHolland does, when I couple my lengths of pvc together I do not lay the ends down in the trench or on the ground, but instead I'll grab a couple short lengths of pvc and bridge them across the trench, and then couple the pvc together on top these bridges. Not perfect, but it helps.

    And, some valves handle dirty water better than others, and so these valves are probably less likely to have problems from debris in the line upstream of them. A lot of these are slow closing and self flush. For the most part, I would assume that small amounts of dirt would pass through most valves without problem, and surely no need to worry about warehouse dust. Everything has limits, of course, and being extra super clean - if at all possible - assures better odds against problems.
  6. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,665

    Two useful sorts of deburrers are made by Ridge, and are easy enough to find. First, the PVC deburrers, and then the don't-leave-home-without-it copper deburrer.


  7. Dirty Water

    Dirty Water LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,799

    I use the Ridge Deburring bevel you pictured, I had a link, but apparently the site doesnt like external linking.

    Amusingly enough, in the 2 years I've been doing this, I've come across a copper water line once.

    You just don't see them outside here.
  8. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 47,665

    I just swiped the images from Ridge's site. I know that the old Wheeler ratchet PVC cutters were usable as deburrers. I forget whether the Victor cutter can do the same. As for the copper deburrer, if you have any amount of indoor plumbing to do, the thing is priceless, if only for the fingers uncut by sharp copper edges. (it can also deburr PVC in a pinch)
  9. F6Hawk

    F6Hawk LawnSite Member
    Posts: 195

    Nice tools, wish I hadda known about them prior to getting half my pipe laid. Oh well, I will know for the future!

    I looked at a piece that had set up overnight, and the plastic that was skimmed off as I pushed the joint together had hardened enough that it would not just break free and travel down the lines. But I am sure it contributes to friction losses. Perhaps the charts take this into account, but I am not sure, and at this point, I guess it won't make a difference, cuz it's mostly done!

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