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Thread: Heads "ooze" water after cycle ends

  1. #1

    Default Heads "ooze" water after cycle ends

    This amateur would appreciate any help. In general terms, I have a 6 zone system for my lawn. I've had 7 years of maintenance free satisfaction. This spring, two of my zones have started to ooze water out of one head each (at the lowest locations) after the cycle shuts off. It "oozes" for up to 5 minutes after the cycle and the water authority has given me a warning. I have replaced both zone valves, both heads, and both nozzles with no luck. About the same time the spring, I had to dig up/repair a 1" pipe that had cracked--maybe I allowed debris in?

  2. #2

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    It is very normal for water to ooze out of the heads for a few minutes at the lowest locations. It is simply draining the water out of the line. If it was oozing water all the time, then you would have a leaky zone valve.

  3. #3
    Rancher
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    Quote Originally Posted by siverhus
    It "oozes" for up to 5 minutes after the cycle and the water authority has given me a warning.
    Oh my... water police... and I know it's coming here too! It's normal for the water to drain out of the supply lines, you could rig up a dump valve at the lowest point to drain into a sump when the valves turn off... but that would seem like overkill, I mean you are watering the lawn.

  4. #4
    Sprinkler Guy Wet_Boots's Avatar
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    I would hand the water police an apple, and tell them to go arrest Sir Isaac Newton, since it's the force of gravity that's draining the water from the zones, which is entirely normal. If you want to throw some money at the situation, you install low-head check valves in the dribbling heads. These usually take the form of a rubber disc on the inlet screen of the head, as something you get when you install 'upgrade' heads (Hunter I-20 instead of the PGP rotor) ~ you might be able to find these rubber-disc-screens as a separate item.

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    Yeah, aren't the water cops just great. Here we are in a draught. Everyone's watering just like normal, no problems, nobody is dehydrated but yet we have the water police driving around writing tickets faster than the youngest meter maid in the city. Gee, I feel so good knowing they are out there protecting us from ourselves. He must have had a slow day, and needed to scold somebody. I mean he does have a badge - Right - He has to do his job and scare someone.

    Coming to a City near you soon Rancher. I know you just can't wait. Ours are already here.

    bob...

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    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    If it the "oozing" definitely stops after a certain time, it is just drain down. First, it means your system may not be built to code. The anti-siphon valves should ooze, not the heads. The valve is too low.


    However, rainbird and toro both make anti-drainback sprinkler bodies, and that is the simple solution to your issue.

  7. #7
    DIY Senior Member ToolsRMe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo
    If it the "oozing" definitely stops after a certain time, it is just drain down. First, it means your system may not be built to code. The anti-siphon valves should ooze, not the heads. The valve is too low.


    However, rainbird and toro both make anti-drainback sprinkler bodies, and that is the simple solution to your issue.
    I don't understand this answer.

    (a) What code? Are we talking about backflow preventers?

    (b) Shouldn't the backflow preventer ooze when there is backpressure and not gravity flowing to the lowest head?

    (c) Is the anti-siphon valve(s) the same or different than the backflow preventer?

  8. #8
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    Anti-siphon valve are acceptable as the backflow means in residential use, at least around here. By definition, and code, an antisiphon valve must e higher than any head on the circuit. That is how it prevents dirty water from a puddle around a head from being sucked into the main. I did mis-speak in that if the anti-siphon is above the heads, it will NOT suffer from leak back. It is when the heads are above, especially on a hill, that the line will drain back, oozing out of the lowest head and possibly also out of the anti-siphon.

    Anti-siphon valve are designed to prevent SIPHONAGE and specifically would not be effective agains back pressure.

    Virtually all plumbing codes include a provision that as a minimum, equipment must be installed in accordance with manufacturer's instruction. Since the instructions for anti-siphon valves specify installation at least 12" above the highest head, then failure to do that is by definition a code violation.
    Last edited by jimbo; 06-20-2007 at 04:03 AM.

  9. #9
    DIY Senior Member ToolsRMe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo
    I did mis-speak in that if the anti-siphon is above the heads, it will NOT suffer from leak back. It is when the heads are above, especially on a hill, that the line will drain back, oozing out of the lowest head and possibly also out of the anti-siphon.
    OK, that clears up my question. Thanks.

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