1. Missed the live Ask the Expert event?
    Not to worry. Check out the archived thread of the Q&A with Ken Hutcheson, President of U.S. Lawns, and the LawnSite community in the Franchising forum .

    Dismiss Notice

Working with low volume...

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by ochosdaddy, Sep 13, 2010.

  1. ochosdaddy

    ochosdaddy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 222

    I'm tired of my parents complaining how their lawn looks. My mom wanted to sod the lawn (again) this fall, she wanted a cost. Instead I told her to install an irrigation system to keep the lawn alive. So that's what we're doing.

    However, the house itself has poor water volume. You can't open two faucets and have good flow, I would have figured most of the problem is due to the internal plumbing of the house. No way in hell I would tap into an inside line for the irrigation system.

    So cross connect as close to the meter as possible, that being about 10 feet from the meter. 5/8" meter, 3/4" copper service line. After we installed the backflow I wanted to see what water we had to work with. I figured it should have been much better because it's not running through the house and out. Yeah, I was wrong. Roughly 4.5 GPM. Pretty pathetic. What should only be two zones (maybe even one with the best volume) will turn into four. Used a 3/4" brass compression fitting branching off to 1" PVC to 1" shut off valve, then to backflow (Febco D/C 850, 1"). Ain't my plumbing...

    Meanwhile, two houses away (another property they own) the volume is the best I've ever seen. Same meter size, same service line from meter. I'm thinking something is wrong between the city line to the meter, like the line is partially crushed, corroded, or something????

    Anyone ever ran across such poor volume?

    BTW: static pressure runs about 90psi. Had to install pressure reducer down at their other property.
  2. mitchgo

    mitchgo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,780

    It could be anything as to what you said.

    Is there a pressure reducing valve near the meter? This could be affecting it.

    I'm assuming your water meter is fully turned on because you install the back flow assembly off your service line.

    However I have seen several times water meters with multiple setters, with multiple curb stops . One curb stop could be fully on, while another is only partially on. This second setter could be buried in the ground.

    Some meters also have special keys ( as well as a curb stop key) that could only be turned on very little too.

    IF you can, fully turn on your back flow assembly and let it flow out, as well turn on a few hose bibs/ sinks. Then go back to your meter and listen. If you here a very high amount of water restriction, then it's definitely something restricting your water flow in this area.

    I've fixed a simple situation like this several times where people have been dealing with low flow issues from these reasons for 5,10,20 years
  3. AI Inc

    AI Inc LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 25,390

    Call the water dept.
  4. NC_Irrigator

    NC_Irrigator LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Posts: 1,415

    have your water meter tested or replaced
  5. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,156

    I'm betting there is a regulator before the meter. These regulators fail to where it reduces flow, but gives high pressure.
  6. hoskm01

    hoskm01 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,690

    Ditto what these guys said. Seen curb stops partially open and pressure regulators that have failed. Your purveyor should be willing to help out with both of these, if they are on or before the meter.
  7. greenmonster304

    greenmonster304 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,097

    It probably doesn't apply here but it reminded me of this. A contractor I know did a 4" water service and RPZ installation for fire sprinklers. After the sprinklers were installed they did the flow and pressure test on the system and it failed. The guy I know does great work and was confident it wasnt anything he did. He had a camera sent down all the way to the water athouities gate valve and all was clear. It turns out when the water co. did the wet tap they didn't cut all the way through and left the coupon in the hole.
  8. hoskm01

    hoskm01 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,690

    Thats a fast way to plug your pipe.

Share This Page