Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by esshaki, Jan 4, 2006.

  1. esshaki

    esshaki LawnSite Member
    Messages: 100

    My family and recently just purchased a new house, and i was wondering on how to turn the sprinkler system on in the spring, do the lines have to be blown? or how does this process work.
  2. therainman

    therainman LawnSite Member
    from IL
    Messages: 196

    Assuming the system was properly shutdown and serviced in the past, all you really need to do is find the main valve and turn the water on and possibly check the backflow for ports that may have been opened during shutdown. However, if this is your first experience with an irrigation system, I would suggest you call a local irrigation company to do the start-up and possibly show you around your system.

  3. sprinklerhead

    sprinklerhead LawnSite Member
    from MI.
    Messages: 92

    Don't tell him he is a home owner!!!!
  4. therainman

    therainman LawnSite Member
    from IL
    Messages: 196

    Yes, I understood that when I replied the first time.
    I gave him the same answer I would give someone who called me on the phone for the first time. Honesty can go a long way my friend.

    If you read all of my post I did suggest a call to you, the greedy professional, if he could not handle it on his own.

  5. esshaki

    esshaki LawnSite Member
    Messages: 100

    thanks for the info..
  6. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,496

    I'm with Rainman on this one. Turn the main isolation valve on and immediately check to see if anything has been left open downstream or was dismantled during the winterization process. You can then put the system through a test to make sure all valves are working properly and that you don't have broken sprinklers or other leaks. However, having immediate advice with a professional present could save you a lot of hassle if something is not quite right when the water is turned back on and the initial system test is performed.
  7. Flatbed

    Flatbed LawnSite Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 39

    In Iowa it is required to have you backflow certification completed before starting your irrigation system. Your backflow keeps your irrigation water seperate from your drinking water. Around the Des Moines area they will shut your water off without this test. I get $65 dollars for the test, and I file and send in the paper work for customers.
  8. PurpHaze

    PurpHaze LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,496

    Is this for new installations only or does this include spring startups and/or any time the backflow is taken apart and/or repaired?
  9. SWD

    SWD LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 988

    Why not tell him - it shouldn't matter is he is a homeowner or not.
    The individual asked a question, either answer it or not - however, your response shouldn't be predicated upon whether he is a homeowner or not.
    Regarding the start up process - usually there is a main isolation valve to the system. Locate this first.
    Then, before opening the main isolation valve, set your controller to the section that is at the highest elevation on your property.
    Once that section valve has been activated, SLOWLY open the main isolation valve - it should take about a minute to a minute and a half before full open.
  10. Critical Care

    Critical Care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,654

    Similar to what SWD does, I will also slowly open the main valve part way at first and flood the main line to the electronic valves. Instead of activating one zone at a time at the controller, I'll manually open two or more valves until all the air is released in those lines, and then repeat this with other zones. Once you open valves and the water begins to flow, it can actually compress the air in the lines, create water hammer, or even cause components to fail or fly apart. So... personally, I like to lessen those possibilities.

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