February 2016

SPOTLIGHT ON SPRINKLERWORKS

For the third year in a row SprinklerWorks is proud to announce that we have won the Angie’s List “Super Service Award”. This honor is given to the best of the best on Angie’s List and everyone at SprinklerWorks is extremely proud of our achievement. One of our primary goals has always been to provide exceptional customer service and winning this award validates all of our effort towards accomplishing that goal.

TIMELY TIP

As we often do during the winter months we are seeing some of the problems associated with artesian wells. An artesian well is simply a free flowing well that does not require a pump to bring water to the surface. This occurs when the water table in the aquifer is high enough to cause an increase in pressure and this increased pressure forces water to the surface. This usually occurs in our area during the winter months when people are not irrigating heavily and water is entering the aquifer faster than it is being pumped out.

The most common problem we see with artesian wells is water being forced up into a pumps electrical controls, and as we all know water and electric do not mix. When this occurs it is necessary to seal the conduit to prevent water from reaching any switches, controls or wire connections. Artesian wells can also increase the operating pressure on the irrigation system because pumps operate much more efficiently when they do not have to lift water or pump it very far vertically. This increased pressure can cause pumps to cycle on and off, or may cause pressure relief valves to open and release excessive pressure. In order to protect expensive pumps and their controls it is important to have well fed systems checked during periods of high water table to insure that everything is working properly. These problems often only last for a few months until people start irrigating more with the arrival of spring’s warmer temperatures.

CONSERVATION CORNER

Keeping an irrigation system operating properly is a very effective way of insuring that water is not being wasted, and that the landscape is being watered properly. Most irrigation systems run while we are sleeping so unless someone checks the system during the daylight hours we never know if everything is working as it should. A simple broken nozzle can cause such a loss in pressure that none of the rest of the heads on that zone even pop-up. When this happens most of the water runs out into the street and the entire zone gets little water. If you are paying for that water it becomes a huge waste of money.

Valves can also malfunction in either the open, or closed, position. If they stick shut, or will not open due to an electrical problem, then the entire zone goes without water. If a valve gets stuck in the open position it can rob the entire system of water and none of the zones work as they should. Malfunctioning valves are one of the biggest reasons for high water bills and poorly irrigated properties.

Rain sensors should be checked frequently for correct operation and settings. Irrigation schedules should be adjusted monthly to allow for changes in the weather and plant water needs as the seasons change. Most irrigation controllers are set and forgotten about until a problem develops in the landscape. As humans we tend to think that more is better when it comes to watering the landscape and that is just not true. Too much water is a waste of our resources, bad for plant health and vigor and a huge threat to our environment.

Problems with pumps and their controls often go undetected and can result in damage to very expensive equipment. Pumps cycling on and off or running at excessive pressures due to a bad valve can shorten the life of a pump dramatically.

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