Poly vs PVC

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by DitchDigga, Feb 20, 2005.

  1. DitchDigga

    DitchDigga LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Hi, I just discovered this board today and wish I had found you guys a long time ago. This is my 1st post so sorry if these topics have been covered.

    I work for an irrigation company in New Hampshire. Most of our jobs are 10 to 20 zone residential. For the most part, we pull 1.5" and 1" poly for mains and zones, and blazing saddle/swing pipe to the heads.

    I have heard that in FL and other southern areas, systems are installed using PVC exclusively. My question, noobish as it may sound, is:

    A. Is this the case?
    B. If so, why? and what are the major tool/labor/technique differences.
    C. Are there any FL installers on this board that could tell me about licensing?

    Thanks in advance for any info.
  2. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,563

    i've never used poly. i always thought that there was more friction loss with poly, but could be wrong.

    we have always used pvc. swing pipe to heads also. NEVER hardpipe to heads
  3. johndarron

    johndarron LawnSite Member
    Posts: 25

    In the south Georgia and Florida market it has just allways been installed using pvc pipe. PVC pipe has less friction loss, most of the homes in the Florida market have fairly small yards on average and I have been on several jobs where the pvc pipe was put in only 6" to 8" below grade using grubbing hoes (mostly sand/shell). Some of the older companies and newer will even use a non-electric valve by K-Rain (indexing valve) to run the system. They have a electric master valve and as it turns on and off the indexing valve working on hydraulics wil advance to the next zone. Now don't get me wrong there are some guys in the Georgia/Florida market pulling in pipe but it could be poly or pvc it just depends on the contractor.

    In Florida you are required to take and pass an exam befor you can have your own irrigation company (many irrigation contractors however are not certified). To see what the requirments are just call one of the building codes departments in Florida and they can help you out.
  4. DitchDigga

    DitchDigga LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Thanks for the info. i didn't know about the friction loss, so I guess using pvc makes more sense in warmer climates. That hydraulic powered valve sounds pretty cool, alleviates pulling(or trenching) wire for a smaller system.

    thousand ways to skin a cat.

    thanks again.
  5. crosson lawn

    crosson lawn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 107

    I live in florida and i am trying to start a irrigation business also. I already have a lawn business. I checked with my county and they said that the state of florida has left it up to the individual counties to require the state test or not. Mine does. So check with the county you plan to move to.
  6. Critical Care

    Critical Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,654

    I just noticed that with 1" poly you're running into the grey area if you try to push more than 12 gpm through it, but with 1" class 200 you're okay up to 17 gpm. So... when you think about it, this could (or should?) make a bit of difference in planning things out.

    My question to you poly-pros is what difficulties do you have with fittings when you've got high pressure in the line of lets say 70 psi or more?
  7. DGI

    DGI LawnSite Member
    from SE Mich
    Posts: 173

    None, CC. Oetikers pinched completely and always on the barbs. Doubled and staggered right off of the valve and if it's really wicked, continue the double staggering down the line a bit.

    In the past we've had problems with Lasco fittings, because they would have only maybe 1/2" of barb on them. The person installing it either didn't know better or just liked the easy squeeze.

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