Common sprinkler problems, and how to fix them

Jul 06 , 2014

Los Angeles has many luxury neighborhoods, but one truly stands out. Bel Air is renown for its large, expensive homes and wide streets. Perhaps even more impressive than the houses, however, are the yards. Take a stroll along Sunset Blvd. near UCLA and you’ll see beautifully maintained lawns and luscious gardens.

Of course, this doesn’t come without constant upkeep. Sprinkler systems are integral to maintaining a healthy yard, but like any other form of underground plumbing, they’re vulnerable to problems. If you experience an issue with your sprinklers, call the best plumber Bel Air has to offer. Hammer Plumbing and Drain can inspect your lines and repair any leaks or broken parts. However, if you’re inclined, some common issues can be fixed on your own.

Broken head

Given that sprinklers are located somewhat out of eye site, it’s strange that they don’t get broken more often. Whether you accidentally kicked one or nicked it with the lawn mower, all hope is not lost. All it takes is a little digging. Clear out the space around the head so that you can access the riser, which is the small pipe connecting to the main sprinkler line. If the head looks to be in decent shape, try cleaning it. Unscrew the top and rinse out all the dirt.

If the head is clearly cracked, then you’ll need a replacement. But make sure you’ve chosen the right model. Many heads look the same, but even subtle differences will affect the installation and operation. Screw the new head back on, replace the dirt, and you’re good to go.

Erratic spraying

Malfunctioning sprinklers are pretty easy to spot. Water goes shooting off in a strange direction, or maybe it sprays everywhere yet doesn’t reach any grass effectively. When you see this in Bel Air, it’s a wonder the home still looks as good as it does. Fortunately, there’s a relatively easy way to re-calibrate.

Every head as its own method of adjustment. For some, all you need is a screwdriver to insert into a slot. Others may require a key. After you’ve figured out which route to take, re-install the head and then hone its direction while the sprinkler is spraying water. From its off location, turn the head counterclockwise until you’ve specified your target.

Low water pressure

If the volume of water spraying from the head looks weak, you probably need to adjust the water pressure. First, locate the system’s backflow device, which is usually located somewhere against the house. Turn the valve to its most open position. Did the water start flowing again? If not, try to pinpoint where a leak might’ve occurred. Usually you’ll find this between the working and non-working heads. Once you find the crack, saw around that section of the pipe, and replace it with a slip coupling, which should reconnect the two sections of the line. If the problem still persists, call a plumber.

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