Redesigning sprinkler system help

I had a sprinkler guy “they guy” in the area with great reviews come out and fix some of my sprinklers.
It was put together by the builder of the house, his first time trying to design a sprinkler system.

I thought and the sprinkler guy confirmed that it was done incorrectly.
He piped the yard with 7 sprinkler heads and 4 pipe (PVC) lines leaving the edge of my patio. They were all hooked to garden hoses and he used a faucet sprinkler timer, only one hose could be run at a time because of the lack of pressure.

Now that you know what I have, lets talk about redesign. I’m a geek at heart and I want an automated sprinkler system, hence the Rachio idea.

My guy told me he wants to run a 1 inch pipe split off of the main water with a cutoff line, I know I am not explaining it correctly here, but I know he knows what he is doing.
He is going to run a faucet and some kind of air line nipple, like what you see on car tires for helping drain/ dry out the system for winter, I like this idea, blow it out with my air compressor (only 25 lbs of pressure)
A few things I wanted to verify and make sure I am asking for the right thing.

  1. He is going to install Rain Bird dv100 valve, I have read where that is compatible with the system. Do you see any issues here?

  2. He talked about running all four lines into one valve as they are going to the lawn and they all have the same characteristics, all sun and with the 1 inch pipe he says one valve will handle them all. I almost thinking since they are already 4 separate pipes at using 4 different valves and then I could control them somewhat separately. Thoughts? Since the smallest system will handle 8 zones, I might as well use some of them.

  3. Do I need a case/cover if the system is outside but under a covered porch?

  4. I see some talk about a flow meter and I also see it is on back-order, will any other flow meter work with the system and is it worth getting, since they are already running a new supply line?

Any thoughts or help would be appreciated.


  1. That valve should be fine with Rachio.

  2. Depending on your sprinklers, 1 valve could/should be sufficient for 7 sprinklers. If the guy knows what he is doing, and he knows what GPM the sprinklers are, then you should be fine. If you want to spend the extra money for more valves and more finite control, that is your choice, but might not be worthwhile if the characteristics are all the same for the grass area.

  3. If it is outside, I personally would put it into the case that is available. If you are confident that it will be sufficiently protected from the environment, you could forgo it I guess…

  4. No other flow meters would work to offer the features of the Rachio meter.

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You say you have lack of pressure. What is it?
Is it because your running it off pressure regulated@ the house ?

What Sprinkler Heads and Nozzles are you using?

What size area?

Your tech; sounds like he wants to run an Irrigation sub -main off your mainline supply (unregulated) with a shut off or isolation valve and tie all the “lateral lines” to 1 Valve which is fine. of course if you have the flow. Which is why he wants the supply before the PR.

“Rachio” is a controller…it shouldn’t have anything to do with what irrigation valve your using.

RainBird DVF has Flow Control versus DV. which does not . It’s the same series.

They’re 15 bucks , and I like have flow control.

You need a Backflow device on the system.

A “case”… do you mean for Rachio or the Valves. In both situations ; 1.An Irrigation box for valves. 2. An outdoor box for the Rachio

agree with @tmcgahey

Cleaner Installation and protects the Hardware. In my OP.

  • had a client instruct me to install his $300 dollar unit without a box under the eaves… 1 hour later the gardeners blew dirt all over the unit. Last time, I touch the unit until I have to replace it.

Good Luck look forward to the solutions!

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It is a single faucet with regular pressure, it is at a lower part on the house than the lawn. It is down at the basement level and the elevation gain is about 30 feet in total. It just has a slitter here is a link to what I currently have, attached to the facet.

The sprinkler heads look like this:

No nozzle currently, there are 4 PVC heads with threaded ends for hoses visible.

I have about a 3/4 acre lawn, beside the house, total property is 1.9 acres.

I am thinking about using 4 valves because if any of the lines fail, the other three lines will continue to work.

I hope this makes scene.

I would buy the flow meter, if it were available at Lowes, but it seems they don’t even have it available, maybe someday I will add it myself.

Are there any other things I should look at buying or adding to the redesign?


Sounds like you have a nice property where ever you are.

  1. The start of any system is PSI and design for GPM flow requirements.

  2. Your RB Rotors have a nozzle installed.
    Its show maximum GPM for flow at 4.6 guessing thats for full 360 degree. Use math to figure out what radius your doing.
    Says you need 55 PSI to operate one.

  • are you saying you have 3/4" PVC running in your yard then with a hose connection to the sprinkler heads?

  • We are saying Pressure Regulation regarding a Pressure Regulator at the house not “regular pressure” no such thing.

  • you state your supply is in the basement and Lawn is above it.
    You have a 30’ deficit in elevation not a gain if your house is lower than the lawn at 30’

Thus in that scenario you would actually have a PSI loss just as a start .433 inched per foot x 30 =12.99 PSI loss to just get you to the Lawn Elevation

Call your water Company and ask them what the stated water pressure is for your Street.

That’s a start.

Buy a Pressure Gauge!

Did you say you had a Ewing Irrigation near you?


Hello mcsgt,

I will tell you first off, you are lacking volume, volume and pressure are to real different things. If he has hooked to a garden hose, it is being fed by many feet of 1/2" line, that is most likely being fed by 3/4".To have a successfull system, You want your irrigation A. To Come off your water Main right after the meter and run 1" line to your yard box, even if it is coming in the house 3/4". B. Have a professionally installed backflowpreventer. C. Design the system of your GPM. I am a plumber so I had a little advantage but I used Rain Birds Free Design Program (I paid the fee to speed it up) and installed the system per there design and really, it worked great. It wouldn’t hurt to do the design and see how close it is. Lets say you install a new 1" irrigation line and backflow. What you want to do is at that line, find out your GPM. Lets say it is 14. Then you have to add up the gpm of your heads. If you have 7 heads at 4 gpm each, then you will need a min of 2 zones (valves) which is what the rachio will control, you run one zone at a time. My yard is rather big and I ended up with 13 zones (3 are drip systems) It really does make a world of difference to have a worry free sprinkler system set up correctly…and needless to say, a good looking yard!

Thanks for the replies guys!

I spoke with a highly recommended installer and he is going to run the main line from the road.

I ordered the 8 zone sensor. I am not sure what I would use the other 7 zones for, if I don’t split my lawn into 4 zones. If I do that and any one of the 4 lines messes up I can still run the other three.

Or should I just have them all put into one? The installer said the pressure will be fine to run all of them on one valve but he can run it on 4.

Any other things I should add? A old school faucet attached to a valve for maybe a hose to a temporary thing in the future?

Really the only things left to decide.