Water filtration is an important part of any irrigation system. Even sprinklers designed to spread solids will need a filter to keep out particles that are too large for the system.
A properly installed filter will help lower your maintenance costs and extend the life of your sprinkler system, especially the heads and valves. Drip systems also need a filter as foreign objects can clog the emitters. Did you know that just a few grains of sand can cause damage to lawn and make it look brown? It can also cause undue wear on components in your sprinkler system.
While sand is the biggest culprit that can clog your sprinkler system, organic materials like algae can also build up and caused clogs and breakdowns.
Now that I have convinced you to install a filter, lets look at a few different options.
The least expensive and most common style of filter is the screen. A simple screen filter installed before your water supply can catch a lot of sand. They are not as effective on algae or mold. These things tend to build up on the screen and clog it. They can also slip through a screen filter easier than sand.
You will need to clean the screen occasionally and this is done by flushing. A simple flushing outlet can be installed to wash all of the debris out of the filter. You can also backwash. This involves spraying water from the "back" of the filter to remove the debris. A second stream of water is sometimes used to sort of "vacuum" what the backwash stream removes.
Cartridge filters are also quite popular. They do not need to be cleaned, you simple replace them. A cartridge filter has a paper filter similar to a screen that can effectively remove algae and mold from the water supply.
Tomorrows's post will cover media, disk, and centrifugal filters. I hope to see you back then. Please leave a comment if would like.
In today's post I am going to cover a few tips to conserve your water. I hope these are helpful. Feel free to leave comments below.
1. Aerate your lawn. If you see dry patches or brown spots in your lawn it might need to be aerated. When the soil gets too compacted the water will not penetrate properly. This situation will require more water to nourish your grass and soil. Thatch build up is another concern. Build up around the grass blades may repel water. The amount of aeration or times you need to de-thatch depend on your type of grass, climate, and amount of fertilizer you use. Too much fertilizer can cause excessive thatch growth. To determine if your lawn needs aeration simply apply some water from the hose to the dry area and observe. It the water does not penetrate you may want to aerate.
2. Add a few inches of mulch or decorative rock around your shrubs. This will conserve water and reduce weeds.
3. Install a filter. Most sprinkler valve and head repairs are due to foreign objects in the water such as sand or insects. Most water supplies have these. Installing a screen filter before the valves can reduce the amount of water needed and save you money on costly repairs.
4. Replace the heads. If your system is very old you may want to consider installing rotary heads. The quality has increased a lot over the last 20 years on these. The old spray heads may use more water than needed.
5. Use drip irrigation for your plants and shrubs. This will save water as well as the other 4 tips. Just click here for more info on drip irrigation. We have a whole page about it.
I hope this information is useful to you and I hope to see you back real soon!