How Often Should I Run My
For information on local watering restrictions click
Honestly one of our most frequently asked questions is, “ How long
should I run my sprinkler?” There are some certain things we must keep in mind.
First, the types of heads that are in your system, weather they be
pop-up spray heads or pop-up rotary heads. These two heads are different because of their precipitation rates
(the amount of water they put onto a specific area within a specific amount of time). Pop-up spray heads have
a much higher precipitation rate (P R) than pop-up rotary heads. Therefore these two types of heads should
never be placed on the same zone.
Second, your soil type is also necessary to know. Here in McKinney and
around are high clay content. Clay soils can only absorb approx. .28” per hour. The amount of water
your lawn can absorb at one time is called,” absorption rate or percolation rate.” The design of your system
may make these times vary. Most systems “should be” designed for matched precipitation.
Example: if a 15” quarter spray uses 1 gallon per minute (G P M). A
15’ half produces 2 GPM and a 15’ full spray produces 4 GPM. These rates truly vary from manufacturer and
from design. If we need 1” of water per week: pop-up spray heads emit approx: 1” per hour. If clay soil can
only absorb approx:.28” per hr set sprinkler to only run the required amount of time necessary to achieve
.28” at one time. Fifteen minutes. would equal approx. time necessary to water without excessive run-off. If
you have the ability to set multiple times on your irrigation controller, i.e. 5mins x 3 times per
day=15mins. 15mins x 4 times a week = 1” or 1hr per week. This is to improve deep watering and to reduce
excessive watering and run-off.
If we need 1” of water per week: pop-up Rotary heads emit approx. .28”
per hour. Rotary heads need to run 4 times as long as pop-up spray heads. 20mins x 3 times per day= 1hr or
.28” 1 hr/60mins x 4 times per week= 1” per week. This is to improve deep watering and to reduce excessive
watering and run-off.
Matthew McMenamy LI # 8050