winterizing sprinkler systems

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by ParksLandscaping, Oct 3, 2005.

  1. ParksLandscaping

    ParksLandscaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 65

    I am new at the irrigation business and have always subcontracted out my winterizations. However this year I am going to attempt to do them myself. I am in the process of trying to purchase a gas powered air compressor. What size to I need and what can you suggest for a 1st timer?


    David A. Parks
  2. BSME

    BSME LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 829

    Since I'm from your area I suggest subcontracting them out... to me

    if not... to do it right you'll want a tow behind compressor... I've used a 10hp compressor mounted in the truck in the past but I needed to buy a 185cfm tow behind...

    if you aren't going to do too many it'd probably be in your best interest to go down to Chet's and rent a tow behind... They're like $400 a week so if you can line them all up it shouldn't be that bad... they'll make you give them a deposit though since they would probably have to find one for you... I talked to them the other day and they have about 40 in their lot now but they are all spoken for...
  3. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 50,751

    Search the word "compressor" for lots of discussion on the topic. If winterizing can't be organized into a neat time window, a truck-mounted compressor will be more useful than a rented tow-behind. You want to look towards getting a tow-behind of your own.
  4. jcom

    jcom LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 791

    I bought a new compressor for $1500.00 three years ago. A Dewalt with a 8 h.p. Honda. 19 cfm. I couldn't be happier with any tool I have bought. Paid for itself the first year. I needed a compressor that I could use on a moments notice and not have to rely on someone else.

    Sets in the pickup box and will handle all the 1" stuff and some of the 1 1/2 depending on length of runs. I have only run into one I did not have the capacity for.

    Good luck,

  5. Mdirrigation

    Mdirrigation LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,793

    I bought a 125 cfm Ingersol tow behind diesel at the auction for 1100.00 . Found a lindsey 90 cfm in the paper for $ 600.00 . Just recently purchaced a smith 100 cfm for $ 900.00 from my mechanic . They are out there . If you are in it for the long haul buy a tow behind no less than 80 CFM .
  6. cenlo

    cenlo LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 322

    I depends on the size and quantity of the projects you are doing? If most of your systems are for areas under 10,000 ft2 almost any compresser will do! A 5 HP gas powered in the back of a truck would be perfect.
  7. Mdirrigation

    Mdirrigation LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,793

    If you have an hour to blow out a 6 zone system , use a little compressor , the minimum CFM that we found that works efficently is 40 CFM
  8. cenlo

    cenlo LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ontario
    Messages: 322

    An hour to blow out 1000' of 1" poly pipe with a 5hp, 10+CFM compressor????????????????????????????????????????? :dizzy:
  9. Wet_Boots

    Wet_Boots LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 50,751

    Getting back to OP, it kind of depends on the systems involved. I could design a system with a two inch main and over 50 gpm so that a little 5 horse dinky could winterize it, given time, but many big systems won't work that way. Little residentials on half acres can be done with a 10 cfm compressor, without too much loss of time. Rotor heads will blow out better than mist heads with lower air flows. Still, you'd be better off getting more than a five horse compressor if you go the truck-mountable route.

    As for equipment, it depends on what you can get your hands on, and what kind of schedule you have. Owning beats renting, in my book.
  10. NC_Irrigator

    NC_Irrigator LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Messages: 1,455

    We shut off the water meter and drain the backflow device (set on unions). No blowing out done around here. We charge the same as the guys that blow out up north.

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