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Elbow Grease


LawnSite Fanatic
Visalia, CA
Had to use a little of it today. Site (now used as home schooling HQ instead of elementary school) reported that front grass area was dying even though system controller was turned on almost seven weeks ago. Found that the PVB was still turned off... oversite from getting shut down in January for freeze protection by district plumbers and not being turned back on by them.

System sat and ran dry for so long that rust (pump water) had hardened on diaphrams of valves. One wouldn't shut off, one only partially opened showing classic "lack of pressure" symptoms and two just plain pizzed me off so they all (five total) got replaced. Spray pop-ups in one area were way too deep because of tree duff, leaves and gopher dirt so new 6" ones were put in. Old Champion brass pop-ups were clogged/turned so out they went too. Even the system sequencing pizzed me off so I rewired the seven zones the way I want them and will just update the site zone map. Controller (MC-Plus-A) is pizzing me off too so it's now on my hit list when we get a break in our work orders.

Elbow Work 5-11-07 001.jpg

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LawnSite Platinum Member
I've never been a fan of Hardie/ Irritrol 700 series valves. Too many small parts. I've seen the hinge rust on some of the early ones, and I've had more problems with seeping than with regular diaphragm style valves.

I replaced three yesterday (two were leaking) with Irrigation Direct DFV100 valves. These are Weathermatic-style reverse flow, but with an Irritrol-style solenoid.

Pressure of 10 to 150 PSI. Flow range of 0.2 to 40 GPM. Two for PGPs in turf, one for drip, just to see how they perform.

Here's a comparison: http://www.irrigationdirect.com/products/compare.asp/id/valves
Did you take the pics of the sprinkler replacement. I would love to save the image to show one guy I am currently doing. All I have is regular installs.

I hate it when my clients, because they don't want to set the sprinkler or can't figure it out on their own, they replace the champion brass pop up with any brand of plastic head that they sell at the likes of H.D. O.S.H. or Lowe's. Then I get a complaint from them that my workers kicked and broke the head, specially if it is a high traffic walkway. Ask some simple questions, come to find out that the head was broken before my boys even showed up.