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Cleaning out Valve Box

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by naturescaretaker, Feb 14, 2005.

  1. naturescaretaker

    naturescaretaker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 854

    I just completed a 3 day seminar on irrigation. One of the round table discussions revolved around how to clean out an existing valve box that has been back filled with dirt and debris, maybe over time or in-proper install. I was floored that this was such a problem.

    I explained what we use on the coast and everyone looked dumbfounded.... kinda like they had been hit with a 2X4 while watching a pair of headlights coming at them.

    So I thought I would share this with you all. We use a little 2.5 gallon wet/dry vac. It sucks water, dirt, mud, sand, and whatever else may be there.

    It's just what we do here at the beach. Maybe some of you can make use of the idea too.
  2. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778

    Have done that...but such a hassle.

    Now I use my "suck tube".


    I take a hose, regular water hose with a high pressure nozzle...and I stick it in and around the pipes and wires and valves...with the water on of course. This makes sort of a slurry of mud and dirt and rocks etc.....I keep doing it until valve box is full of muddy water.

    Then I use my large siphon...my "suck tube". It is a giant hypodermic needle sort of a thing, made with 2 inch pvc pipe...works great. In fact, I use this for many things...sort of a hand pump.

    boy are the valve boxes clean when I'm done.....
  3. WLC

    WLC LawnSite Member
    from NE TN
    Messages: 80

    SWeeeeeTTT!!! :drinkup:
  4. JB926

    JB926 LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 150

    how did you make the suction pipe thing?
  5. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778

    I didn't make it...I bought it...and I can get you one also....they are about 45 bucks apiece and come in two sizes...ones is about 36" long...and one is about 16" long....let me know...I can get you some.
  6. jerryrwm

    jerryrwm LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,274

    Also use a Beckson hand pump. They run about $45.00. Sure beats the hell out of a Big Gulp Cup!!
  7. Broker

    Broker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 382

    Is that Beckson design similar to other designs or is there a benefit?
  8. jerryrwm

    jerryrwm LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,274

    Not a particular reason for the Beckson - use the one with the 6' hose.
    It is available at several supply houses and it works real well.

  9. Broker

    Broker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 382

    Thanks for the website, we have a couple of those. Do you ever have the problem of the flexible pipe coming out of the pump.
  10. SprinklerGuy

    SprinklerGuy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,778

    Here is what I was talking about....it can be used for other things also.

    It has o-rings on the tip and different sized nozzles...this is helpful when sucking crap out of a lawn head that you just installed...you can remove the cap and leave the body of the lawn head, this thing seals right up to the head and you can suck all the dirt/rocks out of the head without removing it and without flushing it and making a huge mess.

    Remove all the couplers from the tip and you can suck larger debris out of the valve box area after you have used the water hose to turn it into a slurry.

    Use it to break up clogs in a line...many many uses.


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