Calling all pros! How to increase overall output (pressure)?

Hi all,
Non Rachio related question.

My system uses reclaimed water that’s provided by a regional utility. I presume it’s on a shared line with the 1000 other homes in my community, but I have assurances from my HOA that there is enough pressure for each household.

I use a combination of rotors and MP rotators and I have tuned them as best I could for arc & throw.

Using the rachio flow meter, my longest drip of my drip lines gets about 18GPM, which is the highest output zone for me.

Another zone that has 8 MP Rotators (MP3500) that should average around 3GPM each is only recording 13GPM for the whole zone - I was expecting over 20GPM (8 x 3GPM = 24GPM).

Could replacing the valve for the zone increase pressure? As far as I can tell, it’s just a cheap hunter valve thats impacted in dirt in a valve box.

Are there pros that specialize in this type of irrigation forensics without charging an arm and a leg?

Any other ideas welcome.

Some Hunter valves have a restrictor screw on the top that can resteict flow, thus decreasing pressure. Check to see if your valve has that, and try backing it all thr way out.

What is making you think that there is a pressure problem? MP Rotators like to stay arijng 40psi to work their best.

good point @tmcgahey. Was going on the flow meter readings (and visually flow seems low), but I do have a valve pressure meter that I can check the individual valves.

Will dust it off and report back.

So I’m currently in a bit of a spat with my HOA over water pressure. I could swear that my zones which were reading 17-18 GPM are now only reporting 10-12 GPM, but the app doesn’t show me any historical data.

Is there any way, as a one-off favor, I could get you guys to run a CSV file of my flow readings? Would be a big help.

This would also be a great addition to the downloadable History CSV you guys currently provide [hint,hint :wink:]


Super-polite bump to the Rachio team (@franz @mckynzee) on this one-off request.

HOA discussions on reclaimed water pressure are heating up - Any chance I can get a CSV of historical flow / zone data?

The 10-12 GPM sounds more in-line with the correct flow ( ie 3/4")

As MP Rotators are Hydraulic, less friction loss and can operate at less flow than a gear driven Toro PRN

What size is the Irrigation Valve? Yes, a flow control could be at question (friction and PSI). However, size of valve and friction loss of the valve is the question.

Up sizing the valve with less fiction and more flow.

You should be able to get your information , from your Meter size and the water department supplying your water.

Are you on separate reclaimed meters for landscape?

What is your water department?

How about an update I see this post is old.

Thank you!


Yes, we get reclaimed water separately. The houses in my HOA aren’t metered individually, they are on a master meter run by the Southwest Florida Water Management District.

The main line on my property is 1", feeder lines to the zones are 3/4"

Not sure about the valves, they look like standard hunter valves.

The HOA has been looking at this more closely. Apparently they are augmenting the master line with lake water and have been sucking up lake debris (lake bottom muck) in the process. Working on installing better filters and Chlorinators in the process.

Was hoping to get a historical readout of GPM per zone from the Rachio team to backup my assertion that whatever they are doing wasn’t working. Though it has been slightly better in the past month.


Hunter manufactures many types of valves. Proper ID is important. Nothing is standard unless is specified for that “standard” operation.

Did you go from a Potable water source to reclaimed and lake water for irrigation, or was it always reclaimed and set up and specified that way?

You need to also find out what PSI is static.

Have you checked out the PSI readings per valve as you said you could do?

With that data at least you can tell with pencil and paper what things should be without Historical Data from the flow meter. Except now the HOA is pumping water.

Looking at your description and specifying from what water sources your now your using , you should be running a Hunter ICV-R 1" valve which can accommodate both reclaimed and secondary water sources.

Really, not sure how the Walla Walla’s :slight_smile: , excuse me Hunter MP’s would do under dirty water without filtration as again they are Hydraulic have they been functioning properly and have you checked their filters? What heads are you using?

Just from your pipe sizing it sounds undersized so you have both PSI loss from demand and friction loss because of it.

Dig up the box and clear the valves from debris ID it along with the other items discussed and at least can be back to irrigation basics.


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All very good points @ProWater. I’ve been traveling for work but I’ll finally get some project time this weekend. Plan is to re-do my main line filter with a bypass line so I can see if the mainline filter is causing the problem.

I did take some PSI measurements and they were as expected (I have the Hunter pressure regulated risers so ~40psi). EXCEPT for the back yard zone which was coming out around 15-20 psi. On that zone I have 6 MP3500 Rotators and 2 Hunter PGP rotors with a 2GPM insert.

My HOA has made some improvements to our reclaimed water quality, though I’m not exactly privy to what they are atm. We were always on reclaimed water, so the source hasn’t changed.

Will hopefully learn more this weekend.

You need a “static” pressure reading, as well as a “dynamic” readings at the end of the line.

Static reading without a Hunters PRS40 installed after the valve…

If you can take both a static before the valve great If you take a reading at the first head Dynamic it would give you the PSI loss of the Valve itself too. Without the PR40 regulator…

Then with A Dynamic test with Hunters MP adapter Tee with a guage you can test with the PR40 at the end of the line or without.

Again, “Just from your pipe sizing it sounds undersized so you have both PSI loss from demand and friction loss because of it.”

Your Zone example aprrox. 6 x 3500 at 2.86 GPM for 180degrees throw= 17.16 GPM plus

2 PGP@ 2 GPM = 4 GPM

Total 21.16GPM

Then you would need 2 Zones or Pipe with 1 1/4" laterals since you said your on 3/4 lateral lines.

Not sure how any of your system is working so if you can clarify that would be great!.

Up to 10 GPM = 3/4″ size pipe
Up to 20 GPM = 1″ size pipe
Up to 36 GPM = 1 1/4″ size pipe
Up to 48 GPM = 1 1/2″ size pipe
Up to 76 GPM = 2″ size pipe