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No Water Flow Thru Zone Valve

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by WalkGood, Jun 26, 2007.

  1. WalkGood

    WalkGood LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,910

    Irritrol gray 2400 jartop zone valve.

    Zone *used* to work. Voltage is being sent by controller, solenoid energizes. No water flow. Even if bleeder is opened, or manual on/off collar is opened, or all three at once. No water flow shows on water meter, and booster pump never comes on (pump comes on with pressure drop). Pressure steady.

    Recent extensive landscape work done: masonry walkways, flower beds, lots of digging done. Poly lines reported broken but repaired.

    I'm thinking maybe the landscaper repairs either capped off the line or they took the two ends of the tee'd line and connected them back again to itself.

    If the poly line was crushed, wouldn't there be SOME flow?

    I don't think it is the zone valve. Whenever I've seen a zone valve fail, it will not CLOSE. Never seen one not OPEN, even manually.

    No one wants to dig up area that was worked on. Probably will pull a new feed from the back manifold to re-feed affected area from it's other end. Might find the problem that way I'll bet.

    Any other ideas/suggestions?

    Messages: 18,668

    I would cut pipe in front of valve. Activate and see if water starts to flow. If it does the line was capped before the first head somehow.
  3. NC_Irrigator

    NC_Irrigator LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Messages: 1,444

    next step, dont cut any lines like he said thats just more work^^

    just take the valve apart and turn the water on & see if any water comes out.

    no water? line has been capped, probably not crushed b/c youd see a leak prob
    So now start digging!!

    If you have water, replace all internal components, diaphram, spring, seat(if it has one)
  4. bicmudpuppy

    bicmudpuppy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,781

    You do have water at the valve? The bleed screw does "bleed"? I would first make sure the valve was NOT the problem. It is a jar top, so opening the valve and stealing the diaphram for a minute or two (valve will leak like a sieve) is an easy test. Can you locate a head for this zone? Unscrew that head and apply water with a garden hose. If they cut and capped the wrong stuff, then the lateral still leaks where the repairs were (not) made.

    Messages: 18,668

    Better first step. i was assuming that water was coming from the external bleeder.

    Messages: 18,668

    Even a better first step. I'm mentally slow today. better stick to easy stuff.
  7. Rainman7

    Rainman7 LawnSite Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 291

    Walk Good,
    This is Long Island.... I think you know what happened, the landscaper cut the lines bent them over and buried them. The homeowner saw the beautiful landscape job, paid the landscaper in full....landscaper smiled and left.

    Or better yet...landscaper cut the lines at the new concrete work or fence then poured concrete on top of cut line to cap them off.

    Good luck, don't forget T&M.
  8. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,496

    Handle it like a sewer line clog. You'll have to find out where the "clog" is by using progressive troubleshooting techniques. Oh... and take pictures. :)
  9. WalkGood

    WalkGood LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,910

    Yes, plenty of water comes out of the bleeder on top of the valve.

    The landscaper swears he didn't bend the poly over, and that he did reconnect the poly. I believe him (I know him) that he reconnected "something". But I asked him if there was a tee and if he somehow reconnected the tee back to itself. At that point he said he couldn't be sure.

    No one wants to pay to dig up the valve box (dirt burried inside, just the very top of the valves show). No one wants to dig in the new landscaped area(s) between the valve and the first head.

    I did dig up just the first head and unscrew it with solenoid on and the collar wide open. Also tried the bleeder and all combinations. There was static water in there but not even a trickle of water movement.

    As I mentioned, customer is more inclined to "backfeed" this zone from a different manifold to avoid messing up the new landscaping. Maybe then we'll see a leak at the zone's front end. But not until someone will pony up the money and pull the trigger to start work on it.

    I was just wondering if a zonevalve would NOT flow water due to some flaw in the valve itself. Even if the collar on/off is opened and/or the bleeder is opened.

    There is the possibility that there is a giant encrusted slug of mud/rocks inside the poly line (maybe an elbow) near the new work and it is acting like a shutoff valve.

    Thanks for all the input.
  10. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,184

    It could fail closed, and I have seen many of them. If the small ports are clogged, it will not open. But it sounds like a clogged pipe. I have pulled out concrete from inside pipes where new fence posts were installed, along with the massive clog of dirt/rocks.

    My tech was at a home yesterday where 2 valves were completely filled with rocks. Not sure if there was a mainline break/repair done recently. Only thought we could come up with.

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