How Much Does Sprinkler Repair Cost? (2023)
- The typical cost to repair a lawn sprinkler system ranges from $132 to $406, and the national average cost is $269.
- Some of the most influential factors in calculating sprinkler repair cost include the size and type of the system, the cause and extent of the problem, the parts required for the repair, the accessibility of the system, and local labor costs.
- The main signs that a sprinkler system needs repair include dripping valves, inconsistent water distribution, irregular water flow, and an increased water bill.
- Handy homeowners may be able to tackle basic sprinkler repairs on their own, but larger repairs like those that require digging are typically best left to the professionals.
Sprinkler system not working?
A pro can figure out what’s wrong and fix the issue. Get free, no-commitment project estimates from sprinkler repair services near you.
Find Pros Now
Successfully maintaining a lawn takes a lot of time and hard work. Fortunately, there are tools to make lawn care easier and more convenient for homeowners. The best lawn sprinkler systems can help homeowners achieve a healthy, plush landscape. Sprinklers seamlessly disperse water throughout the lawn and garden in various programmed spray patterns. An automatic sprinkler system saves time and effort for homeowners so they no longer have to worry about dragging a hose around to water their property several times a week. A sprinkler system also prevents them from having to track how much water the lawn receives on a daily or weekly basis.
Of course, sometimes yard sprinkler systems malfunction and need to be repaired. According to Angi and HomeAdvisor, sprinkler repair cost typically falls between $132 and $406, with $269 as the national average. This guide will explain the factors that play a role in calculating sprinkler system repair costs, the price of each type of repair, the ways homeowners can save money on this project, and the signs it’s time for a homeowner to call a professional for help.
Factors in Calculating Sprinkler Repair Cost
The exact cost to repair a sprinkler system comes down to a few main factors: the size of the sprinkler system, the type of system, the extent of the issue, and the parts needed to fix the problem. The accessibility of the malfunctioning part, local labor rates, and the geographic location of the home also influence the cost.
System Size and Type
As with most home and garden projects, size and scope dictate cost. The larger the lawn, the more expensive the sprinkler system. The type of system can also impact the price of the project. Above-ground systems, in which the sprinkler heads and other components are located above the ground, are easier to repair due to the easy access and do not require digging or extra landscaping work. Repairs for an above-ground system are between $50 and $350. An inground sprinkler system is harder to repair and takes longer, since workers need to dig to access components. These types of repairs cost $50 to $500. Finally, drip irrigation repairs have an average cost of $50 and $450. Drip irrigation can be an above-ground or underground sprinkler system. The underground repairs will cost more because of the additional labor required to access the system.
Problem Cause and Extent
Key factors in determining the cost of sprinkler repair are the cause of the problem and the extent. If multiple components are broken and need to be fixed, making repairs will cost more than just replacing one broken sprinkler head. Of course, if there are multiple sprinkler heads that need to be replaced all at once, homeowners may want to ask for a discount.
Repair Type and Parts Required
The price of each part can impact the total cost of a repair. Plus, most pros mark up the price of parts by 25 percent to 50 percent, in addition to charging for labor. The following table shows the average prices per sprinkler part.
|Backflow preventer||$125 to $900|
|Connections||$0.63 to $7.50|
|Head||$2.50 to $30|
|Manifold repair||$75 to $200|
|Pipe||$0.63 to $3|
|Pump repair||$100 to $200|
|Timer||$37.50 to $450|
|Valve||$12.50 to $150|
|Valve Box||$50 to $85|
|Wiring||$0.50 to $1.50 per foot|
Another factor involves how easy it is for the professional to access the components of the sprinkler system to make the repair. Above-ground systems are much easier to access and cost less than underground systems, which require more time and labor to dig below the surface to get to the parts that need repair.
Labor is the primary factor influencing the cost of a sprinkler system repair. Sprinkler repair companies, plumbers, and other sprinkler specialists charge between $50 and $100 for a sprinkler repair cost per hour. Of course, how much they get done depends on how efficiently they work and how complex the job is.
Most sprinkler repairs take less than 2 hours to finish. A sprinkler head replacement takes less than 1 hour, a valve replacement takes 1 to 2 hours, and a backflow preventer repair also takes about 1 to 2 hours. Many pros have a minimum charge, so homeowners will want to ask about that before hiring them; even if a repair takes only 15 minutes, the professional may charge their rate for a full hour. Others may charge a flat rate based on the project and parts required. The problem with a flat rate is that the pro may overcharge to make sure all of their time and the tools needed for the project are covered in the price. To avoid surprises in the bill, homeowners can ask about the different rates and get a written agreement before the job starts.
Finally, some of the best lawn care services may offer a prepaid annual plan that includes two system checkups and a repair discount. This may be something worth considering to ensure the system is being checked annually and to save some money in the long run.
Sprinkler system not working?
A pro can figure out what’s wrong and fix the issue. Get free, no-commitment project estimates from sprinkler repair services near you.
Find Pros Now
A home’s location can affect sprinkler repair prices for a number of reasons. First, labor costs can vary geographically because of differences in the cost of living. The demand for irrigation repair specialists in a particular area can also have an impact. Additionally, availability of parts can vary by location, causing a shift in prices. If parts are available locally, their cost will be cheaper than if they need to be special ordered. Finally, soil type in a region can affect the amount of time needed to repair inground systems, since different soil consistencies can be harder to break through and may require special equipment that costs more.
To get a sense of cost based on region, the following are some sprinkler repair prices in major metropolitan areas, not including parts.
|City||Average Sprinkler Repair Cost|
Additional Costs and Considerations
Besides the key factors associated with calculating sprinkler repair cost, there are additional costs and considerations for homeowners to keep in mind when determining the total cost of repairing and managing a sprinkler system. Sprinkler maintenance, additional fees for travel and emergency repairs, landscaping repairs, and incremental repairs versus replacement of the entire sprinkler system at once can alter the overall price of repairing a lawn watering system.
Repair vs. Replacement
A homeowner may reach a point where repairing the sprinkler system is no longer worth it and it’s better instead just to install a brand-new one. If a sprinkler system is older than 20 years, needs to be repaired often, or has experienced significant damage from frost, then it is probably time for a homeowner to look into replacing it. An average sprinkler system repair costs $132 to $406, but this can add up over time if parts need repeated repairs. The cost to install a new sprinkler system ranges from $1,679 at the low end to $3,541 at the high end. It will also cost $50 to $100 per hour in labor to remove the old system.
Many professionals will add on a travel fee to cover transportation costs and travel time if they need to come from a distance to service a sprinkler. Generally, the rate excluding travel fees will be anywhere from $50 to $100; travel fees will vary depending on the provider’s rate and the travel distance.
If there is a sprinkler emergency, such as a burst pipe causing flooding or sprinkler heads that will not retract and turn off, homeowners will need to call for help right away. In this type of situation that needs immediate attention, professionals charge an emergency callout fee that is usually in the range of $100 to $200 in addition to the regular rate. If an emergency happens on certain holidays, homeowners will need to be prepared to pay even more.
Keeping up with regular sprinkler maintenance is the best way for a homeowner to avoid costly repairs. While a basic checkup can be done by the homeowner on a regular basis, it is also a good idea to bring in a sprinkler specialist. For DIY, homeowners can expect to spend $20 to $50 on cleaning supplies and tools to check the system, which includes inspecting valves, cleaning heads, and checking landscaping to prevent clogs in the sprinklers. A maintenance call with a pro costs around $75. The pro will inspect the sprinkler system to look at the heads, valves, controllers, pump, backflow preventer, and other key elements; winterize the system; clean sprinkler heads; and run the system to look for any damage or clogs. It may be helpful for a homeowner to set up an annual maintenance contract with a sprinkler repair company; the cost will generally range from $150 to $250 but could be higher for a very large sprinkler system.
Another unexpected cost could stem from homeowners having to repair damaged landscaping. This can occur when a new sprinkler part is being installed, a leak repair is being performed, or new pipes are being laid for irrigation. Homeowners will want to try to preserve any plants by removing and then replacing them once the repair is complete. Lawn care cost can be around $50 to $200, depending on the size of the area and other factors.
Sprinkler Repair Cost by Type
With so many variables in a sprinkler system and potential problems that can occur, a repair could require different parts to address the situation. The parts needed and the associated costs will depend on the specific problem at hand. Repair professionals typically charge for any parts needed in addition to their labor fee. Homeowners can expect a 30 percent to 100 percent charge on top of the part’s price to cover labor. The following information offers a good indication of what each type of repair will cost based on each part.
|Type of Repair||Average Cost (Not Including Labor)|
|Backflow preventer||$50 to $85|
|Box||$50 to $85|
|Controller||$75 to $175|
|Head||$50 to $85|
|Manifold||$75 to $200|
|Pipe||$150 to $350|
|Pump||$100 to $200|
|Solenoid||$75 to $125|
|Valve||$75 to $125|
|Wiring||$58 to $85 per linear foot|
A sprinkler’s backflow preventer is attached to the main water line, and its job is to make sure water only flows away from a home’s central water system. The backflow preventer can get cracked, or small parts may need to be replaced. This is a critical repair, since a home’s water supply can become contaminated if backflow is not prevented properly. This type of sprinkler system repair ranges from $50 to $85 per backflow preventer.
A sprinkler valve box protects the sprinkler system’s valves from the weather. This large box, made out of polypropylene or another plastic, contains the system’s control valves to adjust the settings. Over time, these boxes can become damaged or cracked from being outside in the weather or from something running into them, like a lawnmower. It costs $50 to $85, on average, to repair a valve box.
Some of the common issues with controllers include sprinklers that activate at the wrong time or run too long, a blown fuse, hidden programs that need to be deleted, and memory that needs to be reset. A repair service can adjust the settings of the controller and take care of rewiring and installing new batteries as needed. Repairing a sprinkler controller or timer costs $75 to $175.
The most common repair is fixing or replacing the sprinkler head, where the water sprays out. Sprinkler heads are constantly exposed to the elements and dirt, leading to wear and tear. However, they do not always need to be replaced; sometimes they are just blocked by grass or dirt in the yard and need to be cleaned or to have the head lowered or raised. A typical sprinkler head repair costs $50 to $85.
The manifold is a pipe with multiple openings that allow water to branch off and flow through different lines to reach various valves. It is made of plastic and can get worn down from exposure and begin to crack or turn brittle. Pros can do patchwork for about $75 to $200 per manifold, but it may need to be replaced if it is too damaged.
PVC pipe, which is used throughout the sprinkler system, can last for many years but can crack or burst under pressure. This can happen if the water freezes in the pipes during the winter. Damaged pipes can be patched if the issue is minor; otherwise, they will need to be replaced. The price will be dictated by the type of pipe, thickness of the pipe, accessibility, extent of damage, and cost of labor. For a professional to locate and repair the pipe, the cost ranges from $150 to $350.
Sprinkler system not working?
A pro can figure out what’s wrong and fix the issue. Get free, no-commitment project estimates from sprinkler repair services near you.
Find Pros Now
If the pump fails, it will need to be repaired right away. The pump is a critical component of the sprinkler system, as it controls water pressure in the pipes. Several things can go wrong with the pump: a blown fuse, loose wires, excessive water in the motor, or incorrectly configured settings in the motor. A repair service can fit new fuses, adjust the voltage, and reconnect loose wires as needed. Sprinkler pump repair typically costs between $100 and $200 per pump.
A sprinkler solenoid is a wire coil that connects the sprinkler to the controller. When the sprinkler is on, the solenoid creates a magnetic force that controls a plunger inside the valve so that the valve can open up and control the sprinkler system’s water pressure. The solenoid can sometimes get blocked by dirt, sand, or insects and will need to be cleaned out and possibly repositioned properly. To repair a solenoid, the fee is between $75 and $125.
The valve is a critical element of a sprinkler system since it controls the release of water to the various zones in the yard. It can leak or become loose over time and get cracked or damaged. If this happens, the valve needs to be located, possibly excavated, cleaned out, and either rebuilt or replaced. To make sure the correct issue is addressed, homeowners will want to ask the pro if the problem is from faulty wiring, broken equipment, or both. If the wiring is damaged or disconnected, just the wiring may need to be fixed. The cost to repair a sprinkler valve ranges from $75 to $125. The final price depends on the cost of the valve itself, plus the time it takes for the repair service to complete the job. Valve replacement usually takes 1 to 2 hours, so labor rates will depend on the timing.
Without the wires, the sprinkler system will not work, since the wiring provides the energy to keep it running. Over time, the wires can get damaged and fray. This can cause the system to turn off unexpectedly and eventually stop functioning completely. Either a plumber or an electrician can fix the damaged wires by adjusting or reconnecting them, or getting new covers fitted. Hiring an electrician ranges from $50 to $80 per hour. It costs $50 to $85 per linear foot to repair or replace damaged wire.
Do I Need Sprinkler Repair?
Sprinkler systems typically work for years without any issues, but over time parts can wear out and lead to problems. Addressing issues with the sprinkler system right away will help keep the lawn and garden thriving and prevent the problems from getting worse, which could be costly. There are some telltale signs to watch out for: dry patches; dirty water being sprayed; small holes appearing in the lawn; bubbling water coming out of sprinkler heads; sunken areas around inground sprinkler systems; low water pressure; and mold, mildew, or fungus on the lawn. These issues could be the result of dripping valves, inconsistent water distribution, and irregular water flow.
Damaged sprinkler valves can cause leaking, which wastes water and costs money. Dirt and grass clippings can accumulate in the valves, forcing them to remain open and water to leak out. Signs of dripping valves are pooled water and muddy areas around individual sprinklers. Water might also be bubbling up from the ground. Homeowners will also want to note that the sprinkler system can even leak when it is shut off, which is certainly a sign of trouble.
Inconsistent Water Distribution
Functioning sprinkler systems spray water in a uniform way. If hand watering or hose watering becomes necessary in spots, then there is something wrong with how water is being distributed. Wet spots, dying lawn such as heat-stressed lawn, dripping valves, and a higher water bill are indications that water distribution might be off. Problems with water distribution typically stem from issues with sprinkler heads or control valves.
Irregular Water Flow
Changes in water pressure can create irregular water flow, causing major watering issues. When the pressure is too low, vegetation will not receive enough water, and when the water pressure is too high, then the sprinkler system can wear out and eventually break. To check the water pressure, homeowners can simply turn on the irrigation system and see how the water is flowing. If the water pressure fluctuates, then the system probably has a leak or clog that needs to be addressed. Restoring proper water pressure can cost between $50 and $450, depending on the cause of the problem.
Sprinkler system not working?
Find Pros Now
Increased Water Bill
An unusually high water bill could be a sign that the sprinkler needs to be repaired. The culprit could be water leaking from a pipe, a bad pressure regulator forcing too much water through the system, or an unbalanced control valve. Homeowners will want to review monthly water bills and compare them in case there is an unexpected increase. If that happens, the homeowner will want to call in a pro to check the sprinkler system to assess any damage.
Sprinkler Repair: DIY vs. Hiring a Professional
When a sprinkler system needs attention, some work can be done easily by the homeowner. Many homeowners can clean sprinkler heads and valves with no problem. When a sprinkler head breaks, for example, it can be swapped out as a DIY repair for no more than $20, compared to a professional repair for $75 to $250. Although installing a sprinkler head is a fairly simple task for a homeowner to do on their own, it’s best to learn exactly how to replace a sprinkler system to ensure the project is done correctly. Sprinkler head repair is very different from sprinkler pipe repair and sprinkler line repair, both of which require the attention of an expert. These types of repairs, or others that require digging down in the ground to fix the issue, require a trained professional and special equipment. Trying to DIY it could result in more problems and ultimately more cost for the homeowner.
When homeowners are not sure what the problem is, it’s best to call a licensed professional to assess and locate the issue and determine the most appropriate course of action. Sprinkler professionals are knowledgeable about sprinkler patterns, backflow prevention, and local plumbing and electrical codes, which can help homeowners save money in the long run instead of making costly mistakes when trying to fix an issue themselves. Plus, pros usually provide service guarantees, so they can be called back in if the problem reappears.
How to Save Money on Sprinkler Repair Cost
The best way to save money on sprinkler repair costs is to audit your own sprinkler system every month or so to identify any concerns. First, walk around and look for any sprinkler heads that are leaking water. Keep an eye out for wasteful overspray, which is water hitting the side of the house, driveway, or street. Then cycle through the system to make sure there are no broken heads. Also be sure to check water pressure and the water bill in case anything odd shows up. The following are some additional steps homeowners can take to save money on sprinkler repairs.
- Keep up with routine maintenance. While a service call costs between $50 and $120, hundreds of dollars can potentially be saved through routine upkeep. Proper care includes activation in the spring, winterization in the fall, regular lawn and landscape trimming, and routine cleaning of sprinkler heads.
- Check for discounts. Since sprinkler repair companies usually offer savings if multiple parts need fixing at one time, ask about discounts.
- Wait to schedule the repair. If the repair is not urgent, wait until late fall to get the job done; off-season rates are usually lower than high-season rates.
- Take on some of the easier work. Fix some of the simpler above-ground problems as a DIY project, such as repairs to a damaged backflow preventer, faulty valves, broken sprayer heads, a malfunctioning sprinkler system controller, and/or broken or leaking pipes.
- Don’t skip winterization. Winterize sprinklers by draining the water and turning the system off during cold winter months.
Questions to Ask About Sprinkler Repair
Once problems are spotted with the sprinkler system, it may be time to call in a professional. Homeowners can start looking for one by asking friends and neighbors for recommendations and reading customer reviews and ratings of sprinkler repair pros in the area. Before hiring anyone, homeowners will want to ask the following questions to ensure the company is a good fit for the job.
- How long have you been in the sprinkler repair business?
- Are you licensed and insured?
- Do you have any referrals or testimonials from clients?
- Will you provide a free estimate?
- Do you charge a flat rate or by the hour?
- Is there a minimum service fee?
- Do you offer warranties on labor and parts?
- When will you be available to start the repair?
- How long will it take to fix the sprinkler?
- Can you provide a detailed, easy-to-understand proposal in writing with itemized costs?
- Can you walk me through your process from identifying the problem to repairing it?
Maintaining a plush lawn and vivid garden is dependent upon an effective watering system. An automatic sprinkler system makes this so much easier for homeowners, since they can set a timer and not worry if landscaping is getting enough water. There may come a time, however, when the sprinkler malfunctions and a part needs to be fixed. When homeowners are deciding how to fix the sprinkler or whether they want to hire a pro instead, it is helpful for them to ask the right questions and to understand what they will pay for their specific project. The following are a few questions that may come up.
Q. What is the average life of a sprinkler head?
For higher-end sprinkler heads, the average life span is 10 to 15 years. However, less expensive sprinkler heads tend to last only 2 to 3 years.
Q. How often should a sprinkler system be serviced?
Homeowners are advised to have their sprinkler system serviced at least once every year. To have a professional inspect their system will likely cost between $200 and $400.
Q. How can I know if my sprinkler head is bad?
There are several ways to keep an eye out for a sprinkler head that is no longer functioning properly. These include surplus spraying, low water pressure, physical damage, and a pop-up head that no longer functions correctly.
Q. Why would a sprinkler system stop working?
The main reasons that a sprinkler system would stop working include a problem with the pump or wiring that fails to provide power to the system. If one sprinkler zone is not working, that could be the result of the heads being clogged or broken, or it could be an issue with the lines or valves leading to that particular zone.
Q. Can a sprinkler system leak when it’s off?
Yes; there are two reasons a sprinkler system can leak even when it is turned off. Low head drainage could cause the lowest head on a zone to allow water to drain from the lateral piping and out of the sprinkler. In this case, residual water will stop flowing after all the water has left the pipe. Another reason is water that is leaking through the zone valve due to debris that is blocking the valve.
Q. How can I maintain my sprinkler system to avoid damage?
By consistently maintaining their sprinkler system, homeowners can avoid damage and keep the system running for many years. Homeowners will want to keep up with cleaning sprinkler heads, addressing leaks, checking valves, repairing faulty pipes, repairing damaged wires, and replacing the sprinkler solenoid.
Sources: Angi, HomeAdvisor, Fixr, LawnLove, HomeGuide, LawnStarter
Find trusted local pros for any home project
Find Pros Now
13 Best Tips & Tricks for Irrigation Issues (2023 GUIDE)
If you’re like most homeowners, you rely on your sprinkler system to keep your lawn green and healthy. But what do you do when it starts acting up? This guide offers simple solutions for common sprinkler repair issues so that you don’t have to rely on a professional.
A sprinkler system is responsible for misting your lawn with water every day and keeping it hydrated during the heat of summer, ensuring that grass stays green, vibrant, and healthy-looking.
However, problems can occur, like a sprinkler head that gets stuck opened or closed, causing more water to flow than necessary. This can quickly lead to waterlogging, which will kill the grass and might even damage your plants or flowers.
If you’re having problems with your sprinkler system, don’t panic. There are ways to troubleshoot and repair it without too much hassle. The safest sprinkler repair solution is by reaching out to an expert.
Irrigation systems can be challenging, and you might stumble upon unpleasant surprises, so it’s always best to consult with a professional before starting any repairs.
However, if you feel like taking on this task yourself to save some money, we’re here to give you some advice. Keep reading to find out everything you need to know about repairing a sprinkler system, including components and common issues.
Sprinkler System Parts
It’s important to correctly identify the parts of an irrigation system so that you won’t fidget around the instruction manual every time you need to pick up a tool and shift your attention to a certain component.
Here’s what you need to know before attempting any sprinkler repair:
The sprinkler controller turns the water on and off, usually located in a small box near your yard’s water meter.
They connect to the pipe from the home’s plumbing system and control the output water flow.
It’s a small box on top or below the ground, which houses the control valves. It protects the valves from harsh weather conditions, lawn pests, and naughty pets, like a dog that likes to dig.
They run above or below ground from the valves to the flowerbed, lawn, or someplace else.
These typically attach to the end of these pipes and emit a spray pattern when activated by a valve. Multiple types of irrigation heads are available, including rotors, drip lies, impact sprays, bubblers, and emitters.
It moves water from your home’s plumbing system to the valves. A single-booster pump is enough for a small irrigation system – anything larger requires a multi-irrigation pump.
It measures how much water your sprinkler system is using so you’re not charged for more than you use. It’s also an eco-friendly solution for maintaining a sprinkler system.
It connects to the sprinkler system and its sensors to monitor the water flow and pressure. The controller ensures that the pump switches off when your sprinkler system shuts down and that each zone is receiving the proper amount of water, according to your programming preferences. Plus, it notifies you of any errors and automatically switches off the system in case of an emergency.
It stops dirty water from entering the sprinkler system from outside sources, such as rainwater or pets, like a dog digging around in your flowerbed. The backflow preventer also prevents dirty water from leaving your sprinkler system and entering your household pipes.
It’s set to a certain schedule – daily, every other day, and so on. The timer also activates the valves according to this schedule.
Common Issues with Sprinkler Systems
An irrigation system can start malfunctioning for various reasons. Although a professional might be able to quickly point out the issue, it’s definitely a challenging task for someone untrained.
Here are some common issues you should be aware of when it comes to sprinkler repair:
It’s not uncommon for sprinkler valves to break or wear out. When a valve attached to a zone fails, the affected zone stops working while the rest of the system continues to run. This can cause water waste and unnecessary maintenance.
Broken Sprinkler Heads
Sprinkler heads are often the first part of a system to break down. When they do, water can spray in all directions, creating big puddles and wet spots in places you don’t want them.
Broken or Loose Pipes
Sprinkler systems are connected by PVC piping, which may degrade over time or break when subjected to too much pressure. When a pipe breaks, it can interrupt the water flow and cause the entire system to fail.
Inactive Sprinkler Zones
You may find that you have inactive zones in your sprinkler system – meaning the valves are on, but there is no water running. Perhaps it’s a programming issue, or maybe it indicates a more serious problem.
Low Water Pressure
Although most sprinkler systems rely on low pressure, a test will show if it’s too low. This could indicate a blockage in a system line or valve, a bad sprinkler head, a damaged pipe, or an obstruction in the water supply.
Clogged Backflow Preventer
If your system has a backflow preventer, it’s important to keep it clean and functioning properly. Otherwise, it will clog and cause water to overflow in your yard.
Leaks in the Waterline
If a sprinkler system is losing too much water, it may be time to inspect the line for leaks, cracks, or dents. While some leaks are immediately obvious, gas-charged systems can lose a lot of pressure without any visible signs of a leak. You can use a hydrometer to check for leaks in these systems.
How to Repair Your Sprinkler System
Here are the steps you need to take for sprinkler repair:
1. Check the Backflow Device
The first thing you need to do is check the backflow device. This is a critical piece of your irrigation system that will cause all sorts of problems when it fails to work properly.
Check that the water valves are fully turned on at the backflow device. Otherwise, it could be why you’re experiencing low water pressure.
If the backflow device is defective, you’ll need to replace it. You can find replacement parts at most home improvement stores.
2. Test the Voltage and Resistance of the Sprinkler Zones
You’ll need to check the voltage of each sprinkler zone if you suspect that there is a problem with your solenoid valve.
- Turn off the water valves for the problematic zones.
- Check if any wires in the controller are disconnected or damaged.
- Remove all of the wire nuts connecting wires together in that zone at one time.
- Use a multimeter to test the controller – it should be between 24 to 28 volts. If the voltage is too low or too high, you have to replace the controller.
- Set the multimeter to resistance mode and use it to test the solenoid – it should be between 20 and 60 ohms.
- If it’s below 20 ohms, you have to replace the solenoid.
- Otherwise, If it’s over 60 ohms, cut off a few inches from the solenoid wire and rerun the test. If it’s still over 60 ohms, you have to replace the solenoid.
3. Check the Voltage of the Transformer
Before putting your multimeter aside, you can use it to test the transformer:
- Set your multimeter to voltage mode.
- Identify the transformer terminals on the controller – they are marked with 24-vac.
- Connect the multimeter to the transformer terminals and check the voltage – it should be above 24. If the reading is less than 24, it’s necessary to replace the transformer.
4. Fix a Blown Fuse
If the controller isn’t working, it may be because the fuse has blown. To fix this, simply replace the fuse with a new one of the same size and rating.
5. Replace the Controller to Repair Your Sprinkler System
- Turn off the power to the sprinkler controller.
- Remove the screws from the panel.
- Locate and remove the circuit board.
- Check for broken or disconnected wires. If they are in good condition, you can reattach them to the new controller.
- Install the new controller by following the manufacturer’s instructions. If you’re doing this outside, be sure to protect the wires with a PVC pipe.
- Connect the wires and valves to the power supply.
- Turn on the power to the controller.
- Program the new irrigation schedule.
6. Repair the Sprinkler Valve by Cleaning its Components
- Switch off the controller of the sprinkler system.
- Turn off the main water supply.
- Dismantle the valve by removing the jar top or bonnet screws.
- Carefullyremove the diaphragm and spring.
- If you notice any dirt in the diaphragm or valve body, clean it with fresh water.
- If the diaphragm, spring, or seal is damaged in any way, you have to replace the valve.
7. Replace the Sprinkler Solenoid to Repair the Irrigation System
If you find that there is power running through any wire, it means that the solenoid valve is damaged and needs to be replaced.
- Turn off the controller of the sprinkler system.
- Remove the wires from the solenoid valve.
- Unscrew the solenoid from its case and remove it.
- Install the new solenoid valve.
8. Replace the Transformer
- Unscrew and remove the transformer wires in the terminal.
- Discard the old transformer and add the new one.
- Connect the wires of the new transformer to the controller.
- Insert the wires in the new transformer’s terminal and screw them in place.
9. Check the Sprinkler Head
If you notice low water pressure in a sprinkler head, it could be caused by the debris. In this case, you should be able to quickly solve this problem by thoroughly cleaning the sprinkler head. Do this with a wet and clean rag after turning off the water supply.
10. Repair Sprinkler Heads
If you’re only dealing with one or two sprinkler heads that aren’t working, you can probably repair them yourself. Just remove the head from the ground and replace the nozzle or bonnet.
11. Check the Water Flow Direction at the Valve
An irrigation professional should have no trouble installing a sprinkler system correctly. However, problems like an incorrectly installed valve are prone to happen now and then.
It’s essential to check the water flow direction at the valve to ensure that it’s correct. Otherwise, you risk doing severe damage to the internal components of the sprinkler system, which may lead to reinstalling the whole thing.
And, if the valve was accidentally installed backward, be sure to reinstall it correctly by following the user manual provided by your manufacturer.
12. Unclog the Backflow Preventer
If you notice that some areas of your yard don’t get water during rainy periods or after a heavy downpour, it’s possible that the backflow preventer has clogged. You can do this by following these simple steps:
- Turn off the controller and valves.
- Remove the top of the backflow preventer.
- Look inside and remove any debris that you see.
- Replace the top of the backflow preventer and turn on the controller and valves.
- Check for water leaks. If you find any, tighten the screws on the top of the backflow preventer until they’re snug.
- Test the sprinkler system by running it for a few minutes to ensure everything is working correctly.
13. Fix Waterline Leaks in the Sprinkler System
Identifying and repairing waterline leaks and cracks is a more intricate process that requires additional steps. Here’s what you need to do:
1. Turn On the Irrigation System
Switch on your sprinkler system to see the parts from which the water is escaping. It’s best to do this during a sunny day to have maximum visibility. It may be challenging to find if the leak is small, but don’t give up.
If the irrigation system works in zones, it’s easier to turn on the water for one zone and check it for leaks before moving on to the next zone.
2. Check for Leaks or Cracks
You can check an above-ground sprinkler system by quickly investigating cracks or leaks in the sprinkler line. If you find the culprit, highlight it with a waterproof marker.
When it comes to underground irrigation systems, check for any small flooded areas in the sprinkler line or water that bubbles up from the soil. If you spot the area, place a big rock or something similar to quickly identify it later.
Another way to identify leaks or cracks in an underground system is by checking the sprinkler heads. If they are placed in a series, try to tell which head is sprinkling a lesser amount of water. In that case, you will find the waterline crack between the last working head and the first broken head.
3. Turn Off the Water Supply
Once you’ve identified the leaks, it’s time to deactivate the water supply. There should be a shut-off valve near the sprinkler head that you can turn off to stop the water flow. Make sure to wait a few minutes until the entire sprinkler line is cleared of water.
4. Reach the Underground Sprinkler Line
If your irrigation system is underground, you need to reach it to be able to fix the leak. To do this, use a hand trowler since it’s gentler than a shovel. Dig around the waterline so that you don’t accidentally damage it.
It’s best to make a square cut since adding the patch back to the soil will be easier once you finish repairs. Furthermore, it’s best to cut a patch of dirt deep enough to sustain the grass above it. If the grass crumbles, it will take a while to grow back, and your lawn will look imperfect in the meantime.
If you find a crushed section of the waterline, it could be caused by overgrown tree roots or heavy objects placed above the ground.
5. Clean the Exposed Waterline to Repair the Lawn Sprinkler
Before fixing the crack in the waterline, it’s crucial to prevent any dirt from getting inside. Any debris that penetrates the sprinkler system might clog, causing more problems down the road. You can use a clean and wet cloth to clean the waterline; detergent or a cleaning solution is unnecessary.
6. Repair the Broken Water Pipe
- Use a hacksaw to make clean cuts on the damaged section of the waterline – both edges must be even.
- Remove and discard the broken part.
- Add a band clamp to each end of the waterline, but don’t tighten the clamps just yet.
- Insert a slip coupling into the missing section and adjust it until it fits – it extends for as long as necessary.
- Tighten the two clamps with a screwdriver to seal the sprinkler waterline.
7. Check for Any Further Leaks
Before putting the soil patch back into the ground, you need to check your sprinkler system for further leaks. To do this, turn on the water supply, wait for a few minutes, and inspect the exposed section of the waterline.
The slip coupling and band clamps should hold up. Otherwise, you need to reassess the situation and recheck your work. If it becomes too confusing, don’t hesitate to resort to a professional.
If everything is fine, return the patch of soil to the ground and check for leaks in other areas of the sprinkler system.
Sprinkler Repair Pricing
If you’re having difficulty locating or repairing a leak in your sprinkle system, don’t hesitate to call a professional plumber for assistance. A good plumber can quickly identify and fix any leaks in your system, so you can get back to enjoying your garden.
The cost of fixing an irrigation system depends on various aspects, like where you live and what type of problem you have. For instance, if you need to replace a sprinkler head, a contractor charges you between $5 and $20. Replacing a valve may cost anything between $20 and $40; this doesn’t cover the labor cost, typically around $75 per hour.
Sprinkler Repair FAQ
Discover more information about fixing and maintaining an irrigation system.
How to adjust sprinkler heads?
Sprinkler heads often need to be adjusted if the water isn’t reaching all parts of your lawn. Move the sprinkler heads around and try changing the length and angle of each facing.
How to extend a broken underground sprinkler line?
If you can’t use a pipe cutter or don’t have an extra section of PVC, you can use a hacksaw to extend the line. Cut two pieces of PVC that are each 1-2 feet longer than the break. Make sure the cuts are straight and even on both sides.
How to install a sprinkler system?
- Locate the area where you want to install the sprinkler system. It’s best to install it in an open space, like a lawn or garden.
- Mark the spot where you will be digging the trenches for the waterlines with a shovel or stick.
- Dig the trenches for the waterlines using a shovel. The channels should be at least 12 inches deep and 24 inches wide.
- Lay the waterlines in the trenches and connect them to each other – make sure they’re straight and even.
- Cover up the waterlines with soil and pack them down to stabilize.
- Connect the sprinkler heads to the waterlines and bury them in the soil.
- Turn on the water supply and check for any leaks.
How to winterize a sprinkler system?
If you’re interested in blowing out your sprinkler system to prevent water from freezing inside the pipes during wintertime, here’s what you need to do:
- Turn off the water supply to the sprinkler system.
- Drain the water from all of the irrigation lines and sprinkler heads.
- Next, disable the timer.
- Attach an air compressor to the irrigation system.
- Blow out the sprinklers.
- Disconnect the hoses from the sprinkler system.
- Pack any snow or ice on top of the sprinkler head with a shovel.
- Cover the sprinkler system with insulation.
- Turn on the water supply and inspect the system for any leaks.
How to replace a sprinkler head?
You can change a sprinkler head by using a wrench or screwdriver. First, make sure to disable the water supply to the sprinkler system and drain the water from all of the irrigation lines and sprinkler heads.
Also, ensure that the replacement head is compatible with your irrigation system. Reattach the sprinkler head to its base and tighten the screws. Then, restart the water supply and check for leaks.
How much does a sprinkler system cost?
A sprinkler system typically costs between $300 and $3,000, depending on the size and complexity of the system. However, some homeowners choose to install their own systems, costing as little as $300.
How to drain a sprinkler system?
To prevent standing water from damaging your lawn or garden, drain the sprinkler system before you start digging. You can easily do this by turning off the water supply to the irrigation system, then identifying and removing a valve located near each section where the pipe connects.
How to cap a sprinkler head?
You can use an adjustable wrench to cap a sprinkler head by gripping the head and turning it counterclockwise until it is completely unthreaded. Then, screw in an appropriately sized rubber cap onto the threaded pipe.
How to design a sprinkler system?
Designing a sprinkler system typically involves using an online design tool or buying a guide that you can follow step-by-step. After determining the size of your lawn, click on the different shapes of spray heads to decide which ones will work best for your space.
How often should I water my lawn?
You should water your lawn every day to keep it healthy. If you live in an area that sees a lot of sun or wind, water the lawn more frequently. But don’t forget to prepare for winter by blowing out your irrigation system to prevent water from freezing.
How many sprinkler heads per zone do I need?
The number of sprinkler heads you need per zone is determined by your water pressure, lawn size, and watering techniques. For example, a higher pressure requires more sprinklers to ensure that the area gets enough water.
And if you’re using landscape irrigation or drip irrigation instead of traditional overhead sprinklers, you will need fewer heads.
How to clean a sprinkler head?
You can clean a sprinkler head by using a screwdriver to remove the top. Be careful not to damage the plastic or metal parts. Then, use a brush to clean any dirt or debris from the inside and outside the head.
Finally, reattach the top and tighten the screws. Turn on the water supply and check for leaks.
Final Thoughts on Sprinkle Repair
It may seem daunting at first to repair a sprinkler system, but it’s relatively straightforward. By following our instructions, you can fix your sprinkler system in a jiffy. However, if you’re not comfortable making any of the repairs or adjustments listed in this article, don’t hesitate to hire a professional.
What kind of issues have you stumbled upon when trying to fix your sprinkler system? Share your experience with us in the comment section below!
Maintenance of fire sprinkler systems in Moscow
8 (495) 960-05-91
E-mail: [email protected]
Address: 115093, Moscow, st. B. Serpukhovskaya, 31, bldg. 14, office 104
Working hours: around the clock
In our company Pozhbezopasnost LLC, you can order maintenance of a sprinkler fire extinguishing system in Moscow, as well as in any city in the Moscow region.
A sprinkler is a small sprinkler to which a network of water pipes is connected (the pipes in turn are connected to a water tank).
The sprinkler is equipped with a protective flask that prevents water from flowing out – in the event of a fire, the flask melts, which leads to automatic spraying of water in the room.
Sprinkler installation can be reinforced with accessories – various sensors, valves, remote control and so on. Legislation requires property owners to periodically inspect and maintain sprinkler installations, and for violation of this rule, the property owner can be heavily fined.
Checking allows you to evaluate the performance of the fire extinguishing installation, and in case of detection of breakdowns, specialists will carry out repairs.
Sprinkler Service Intervals
The Water Fire Suppression Maintenance Schedule requires property owners to inspect sprinkler installations and repair them when a breakdown is detected or new equipment is introduced.
It is also necessary to periodically carry out a preventive inspection of fire equipment:
|Every week||Monitoring the operation of the tank, water pump and power plant, checking the locking of valves, monitoring sensors|
|Monthly||Test of emergency accumulators, control of pressure and contamination of pipes, general check of system performance in various modes|
|Every quarter||Flushing and cleaning of pipelines, maintenance of sprinklers, comprehensive assessment of the operation of the plant in an emergency|
|Every year||Tank cleaning, replacement of expired plant components, control of float valves, system testing at maximum load level|
Sprinkler maintenance steps
Our company carries out maintenance according to the following algorithm:
- Our employee comes to your facility, who inspects and draws up an approximate work plan.
If you agree with the plan, then we conclude an agreement, and you pay for the order in full.
- After that, at the appointed time, our employees come to you, who carry out all the necessary work – inspection of sensors and pipes, control of the operation of pumps and power plants, flushing of pipelines, and so on.
- We also start the system in various modes – this allows us to evaluate the overall performance of the fire extinguishing system.
- If any malfunctions or leaks are found, we will repair and replace the damaged equipment.
- At the end, we draw up an act on the state of your fire system – this document is official, and upon verification it must be handed over to the fire inspector.
Fire sprinkler service is regulated by law in accordance with national regulations.
Basic Laws – Federal Law No. 123 “Technical Regulations on Fire Safety Requirements”, SP 484.1311500.2020, SP 485. 1311500.2020, SP 486.1311500.2020, GOST R 50680-94, GOST R 53289-2009 and others. The fire extinguishing system maintenance regulation states that the owner of the building is responsible for the state of the fire system, however, if necessary, the owner can delegate this task to an authorized person – this person will be responsible for this.
Fire service must be carried out either by employees with special education who are on the company’s staff, or by third parties by agreement with the owner.
You can order a full fire service from our company, you can apply remotely by phone or via e-mail.
If you have any questions about service or payment, you can ask them by phone during business hours.
Fire sprinkler system maintenance
Fire extinguishing devices are used in various functions and designs. At facilities where more than 1 person per 1 square meter can be located at the same time, both manual portable fire extinguishing equipment and automatic fire extinguishing installations are provided. Among the latter, sprinkler systems are the most popular. They can be noted in:
- shopping centers;
- sports complexes;
- car parks;
- building markets and museums.
Elements of the fire extinguishing sprinkler system
The complete set of the fire extinguishing sprinkler system includes not only sprinklers that respond to an increase in ambient temperature, but also:
- pumping station;
- control device;
- pipeline network with locking elements.
Fire extinguished with water sprayed with sprinklers. Since the fire extinguishing agent is under pressure in the system, water (or a special composition) is sprayed at a distance of up to 2 m. By evenly positioning the sprinklers in the room (taking into account the information and calculations from airbag No. 88, the parameters and design of the protected object), it is possible to protect the entire territory.
How Sprinklers Work and the Importance of Maintaining Them
Sprinklers operate when the temperature rises – from 79°C to 182°C depending on the model. This happens by activating the thermal lock: the heat-sensitive flask that closes the opening of the device bursts and opens access to the fire extinguishing agent. The opening of the heads occurs somewhere in 2–3 minutes after the temperature rises. According to GOST, the sprinkler response time should not be more than 300 seconds if these are low-temperature elements, or 600 seconds. for high temperature devices.
Sprinkler technicians note that regularly inspecting sprinklers for defects is essential if a facility owner wants to keep the system in working order for as long as possible – up to 10 years from the date of manufacture.
Sprinklers are subject to inspection to detect:
- mechanical damage;
- traces of destruction.
If at least one of the points is found, the thermal lock must be changed to a new one, after draining the liquid. After that, the system is restarted.
Service maintenance of sprinkler fire extinguishing systems
Maintenance (MS) of sprinkler fire extinguishing is about 20 manipulations, from test activities and external inspections of units to pipeline cleaning and complex testing of the entire complex.
An employee of the company with the appropriate license from the Ministry of Emergency Situations to perform work on the installation, design and maintenance of fire sprinklers every week:
- Takes pressure readings from pressure gauges.
- Records the water level in tanks.
- Checks the position of the shut-off valve.
- Tests the alarm, starts the pump and diesel engine.
- Verifies that the heating is working properly to prevent freezing of water in the pipeline.
Once a month check the level and density of the electrolyte in the batteries, if necessary, replace the faulty devices with new ones.
Quarterly works include:
– inspections of premises where installations and sprinklers are located;
– measures to clean the sprinklers from plaque;
– checking pipelines for corrosion and strength of fasteners, restoring the outer coating of pipes;
– checking the backup power supply unit powered by a diesel generator;
– inspection of gate valves to detect incorrect position;
– checking water level alarms.
Once every 6 months, the moving elements of the alarm valves and the electrical part of the signal are subject to inspection to check the access of the alarm signal to the operator on the security console.
Pumps are checked at maximum power once a year. At the same time, float valves on tanks and filters are inspected.
Control inspections of water tanks, restoration of their anti-corrosion coating, repair or replacement of stop valves, alarm valves (if necessary) are carried out 1 time every 3 years.