Flow meter PVC 1 inch install success!

I thought that I would add to this thread with my successful flow meter install. My system uses 1" PVC. I used a PVC cutter to snip out a section of pipe and secured the meter in place with PVC-lock connectors. The meter is about 35 feet from the Rachio controller. The controller reports that the signal is excellent.
The PVC pipe continues straight down into the bark chips and dirt about 1 foot after the meter.
My city just installed brand new Neptune Mach 10 ultrasonic networked water meters. These meters claim to be extremely accurate at very low flows. I benchmarked the Rachio and the Mach 10 against each other. They agreed within 2%. I consider that to be very good.
I do have one concern with this arrangement of connectors. Here in Chicago, the ground moves a great deal with the seasons. With temperature swings and frost heaves, the ground can move up or down a few inches. I worry that the PVC-lock fitting could be wrenched off by the forces this movement could create. I suppose that I will just have to inspect the fittings carefully at spring startup.


@JeremyW Thanks for sharing, love it!


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If the ground moves that much, you will probably snap the threads off the PVC male adapter long before the push on fittings give way.

@JeremyW, please keep us posted if you notice any movement between the ground and fittings. Installation looks great! Did you install a sleeve to keep the mulch away from the pipe?

Hi Emil,
Yes, I installed a sleeve to keep the mulch way from the the pipe and fittings. The sleeve is only about six inches long. The pipe continues down into the dirt another six inches or so after that. My goal way to keep the meter assembly free from obstructions so that I could inspect it easily. The sleeve is just the neoprene from a hub-less coupling that I had on hand.


Just curious, do you get snow in your location? your grass looks like cold season grass.

@Rachio Team is there any risk if a flow sensor get completely covered under snow?

@fpuig, there’s no risk to the flow meter being exposed to snow. The bigger risk is making sure it’s drained prior to freezing temperatures; you don’t want water to freeze inside of it :snowflake:

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@fpuig, yes. This system will get snow. This is the Chicago area. Around here, irrigation systems are drained and blown out before the first freeze. At spring startup, the system is inspected to make sure that none of the components were damaged in the winter.

Yes, it is a cool season grass. The whole lawn is KBG. Good eye.