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Thread: New House - Irrigation System - HOW DOES THIS WORK?!

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member niqueyg's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Greenwood, IN

    Question New House - Irrigation System - HOW DOES THIS WORK?!

    So we bought a house and took possession at the beggining of May...and we love it. The problem is, the sun is already hot and the grass looks pathetic, so its time to turn on the irrigation system we have right? Wrong...I have no clue what I'm doing. I've replaced leaky copper fittings and even helped put in a water heater, but this is completely foreign to me. There are basically 4 major points of attraction in my system (that I know of):

    1) The control box with timer, zones..etc. - directions are right on it, and it seems to be in working order
    2) The PVC "U" coming out the round with 2 valves on it (1/4 turn lever valves)
    3) A round green lid in the ground marked "Irrigation control valve" with 1 turn valve (1/4 turn lever valve with no wires, cellunoids etc) in it
    4) A rectangular green lid in the ground marked "Irrigation" with nothing more than exposed PVC coming out of the ground and going back into the ground with no valves and a vertical copper pipe with a flapper on the top which I assume is some sort of bleeder/backwash valve in it

    I have turned all lever valves to the "on" posistion parellel to the pipes and tried to manually start from the control box, but while it says "system watering", nothing is happening
    Also, there doesn't seem to be any "moving water" sound when I turn any of the valves. I have pictures, but it seems they are too large to upload. Any tips or advice anyone?

  2. #2
    irrigation tech. mike1059's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Portland, OR


    It sounds like you need to find one more valve near the water source. This can normaly be found near the meter but if your source is from the house it could be inside.

  3. #3
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Yakima WA


    If you are using domestic water, and it sounds like you are, there is supposed to be a back flow preventer located near where the yard line splits from the house line. These are require by Federal law, but some area ignore the law. The water would be shut off at the tee which is likely way underground. It might be worth paying a yard service to come out this first time and get the system started. Pay attention and after this you can DIY. The system needs to be blown out in the fall. There are almost certainly companies that do this. Again, pay attention and in the future this should not be a problem. It's not like it's complicated, but you have to know where the valves are.

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