Summer is fast approaching and so is the relentless summer sun that can take a toll on your lawn and garden. A quick, weekly check of your irrigation system will help ensure you don't run into bigger problems later on.
Here are a few simple suggestions to help keep your sprinkler system in top shape.
After mowing, use the "manual" setting on your sprinkler timer to turn on each sprinkler station for a couple minutes at a time. Then walk around and visually check for these potential problems:
Adjust any sprinkler heads that may have shifted and are watering the street, patio, sidewalk or driveway.
Taller grass around sprinkler heads may block your intended spray pattern and prevent water from reaching your lawn or other plants. Make sure you have at least 3- or 4-inch pop-up sprinklers to fully clear taller grass. You may also need to trim back overgrown plant material that may be blocking the spray.
Look for parts that may have been broken by lawnmowers or foot traffic. Replace any broken parts, being sure to match the spray pattern and distance for peak performance.
Dirt, small rocks or other debris can occasionally clog sprinkler heads. If you notice any heads that appear clogged, simply turn off the zone, unscrew the nozzle, then rinse the nozzle and filter screen in some clean water. Once cleared, replace the nozzle and filter screen, checking to make sure the spray is aligned properly.
For even, efficient watering, each sprinkler's spray should just reach the next sprinkler head. Under-spray may result in dry spots that can eventually turn brown, while over-spray wastes water.
Periodically check your sprinklers to make sure everything is working properly will help keep your landscape looking great all summer long.