sprinkler, watering, lawn, lawn care, irrigation system, northwest arkansasWinter is over, and Spring is here. That means it’s almost time to turn on the sprinkler so your lawn and garden can get the water they need to flourish. 

When should I reopen my irrigation system?

Opening your sprinkler system depends largely on the weather conditions of your area and your watering needs. Generally, we recommend waiting until the threat of frost is past. If you’re an early planter, April 15th might be a safe bet. However, May 2nd is considered the safest date to avoid frost damage unless you have a rainy spring. In that case, you might wait until June. Just be sure to have your system fully operational before the summer heat kicks in. 

How do I turn my sprinklers back on?

Starting a sprinkler system is something you can do yourself if you’re comfortable. However, it’s important to note that it can lead to extensive damage to the irrigation system if it’s done wrong or at the wrong time.  It may take you around 1.5-hours to complete the job, and you’ll need a few tools. 

What You’ll Need

Steps to Turn on the Sprinkler System

  1. Close the spigot on your backflow. Typically, this is located outside where the water lines leave your home. 
  2. Slowly open the gate valve. This valve is usually found inside, near the place where your water lines leave the house.  
  3. Open the cover of the sprinkler timer. Find the battery backup (if applicable) and replace it. Follow the instructions in the manual. 
  4. Run a test. Set the timer to run a manual test of all the zones one at a time. Run each zone for about three to five minutes. As each one turns on, make sure they’re working properly. Write down any problems you see so you can address them later. Check for water coverage, leaky heads, and breaks. 
  5. Remove any excess lawn or plant growth away from the sprinkler heads. 
  6. Make sure the sprinkler heads are adjusted correctly, and that coverage is ample for each zone. Adjust as necessary to get the correct coverage using your hand or tools.
  7. Check for clogs in the sprinkler heads. If clogged, unscrew the head casing or nozzle. Check the filter at the base or in the stem and clean it out with water. Make sure there aren’t any stones or other debris lodged in the nozzle. Clean and replace.  
  8. If you notice a problem with a specific zone, turn the zone off on the timer so the rest of the system can continue to operate normally. 

Warning! When turning on your sprinkler system, the most important thing to remember is slowly turning the water on. You can cause a shock wave by the sudden water flow that can burst fittings and pop speller heads off if you don’t. Always open the system shutoff valve slowly to let the system pressurize gradually. It will only take a few seconds and save you the headache of repairs. 

We can Help with Sprinkler Start-Up

Give your lawn the best chance of thriving this year with a well-maintained irrigation system. Trust your spring sparkler start-up and lawn care to the professionals at Nichols Reliable Lawn Care & More this year to avoid any possible damage. Get ahead of the rush and secure your spot. Get a FREE estimate. Call now. 479.502.2192