Our Current Blog Articles
October 12, 2017
What to Do If Your Sprinklers Freeze and Break
Have you ever wondered what to do if your sprinklers freeze and break? All American Sprinkler and Landscaping in Denver, Colorado has all the information you need. We’re moving into the cold winter months with our first snow already on the books. If your system is not winterized correctly, it is in danger of major problems as the temperatures drop.
So, here’s what to do if your sprinklers freeze and break.
Find the Leak
If it turns out that your sprinklers have frozen and broken, the first thing you will need to do is find the place (or places) where it is leaking. Sometimes this will be pretty obvious and other times, not so much. Here are a few tips on how to find it.
Underground pipes are less likely to have this problem as the dirt surrounding the pipe insulates it from cold temperatures. For this reason, start your search with the above-ground pipes, it’s easier! Pipes are more likely to break at joints, so check those first.
If the crack occurred in a pressurized pipe, you will find a geyser shooting up, and the leak will be easy to find. If by some chance one of the underground pipes did rupture, the best way to find it is to search for a wet area, soaking the ground around the broken pipe.
Repair the Leak
You generally can’t repair a leaky pipe or valve since a patch is usually not sufficient to handle pressurized water on a regular basis. Instead, you will have to replace the cracked portion. Repairing a leaky valve is as simple as removing the old one and installing a new one.
If the break occurred in a section of pipe, you must cut out and remove the portion of tube where the crack occurred. Replace your sprinkler system pipe it with a slightly shorter portion of the new pipeline and use couplings to attach it securely. You can find telescopic PVC couplings that make it easier by having a piece that slides out to connect to the original pipe once the new hose and couplings are in place.
Avoiding leaks is as simple as draining the system before winter sets in. Water can’t freeze in the pipes and cause cracks if there isn’t any water in the system, no matter how cold it gets.
Firmly close the main line supply valve to ensure that water isn’t trickling into the system. Then open all the valves and leave them a half turn open all winter. This will drain the system and ensure that if there is a little water left in the system, it has somewhere to go if it begins to freeze. We also provide sprinkler winterization services if you’d like us to take care it for you.
So now you know what to do if your sprinklers freeze and break. If this happens to you, be sure to contact us at All American Sprinkler and Landscaping. Of course, our experts recommend not allowing the pipes to break in the first place. So, if you haven’t already winterized your system, we recommend getting it taken care of as soon as possible.
September 14, 2017
How to Winterize Your Denver Sprinkler System
Today, the experts at All American Sprinkler and Landscaping discuss how to winterize your Denver sprinkler system. This is important, especially in areas like Denver where the winters can get bitterly cold. Otherwise, you will end up with major problems in the spring that you will have to attend to before you can actually use your system. If the damage is severe enough, you might even have to replace the entire system.
Tip 1: Turn off the water
This is the first and somewhat obvious step in how to winterize your Denver sprinkler system. Also, take the time to ensure that the shut-off valve is protected from freezing. If that step was skipped during installation, be sure to take care of it now before winter sets in.
Tip 2: Turn off the timer
The timer, or controller, for your sprinkler system, needs to be turned off separately. You may even have to go one step further and disconnect it from the power source.
Tip 3: Remove backflow preventer
The backflow preventer is a convenient mechanism during the watering season but needs to be removed as part of the winterizing process. This is done in preparation for the next step.
Tip 4: Drain the water
To prevent cracked or broken sprinkler pipes caused by water freezing and expanding in the pipes, all of the water in the system needs to be drained. You can use a wet/dry shop vac to do this, but that method is a bit time-consuming. A quicker method is to use an air compressor to blow out all the pipes. Make sure to open all valves and remove the backflow preventer first.
Tip 5: Know your system
To perform this winterizing well it’s a good idea to know your system. Know where all the drain valves are located, or you won’t be able to get all the water out. You can even draw up a schematic or chart and keep in a safe, waterproof place to help yourself out from year to year, so you don’t have to try to remember it all.
Tip 6: Understand the climate
The entire sprinkler winterizing process doesn’t always have to be performed depending on your location. For example, in areas where the winters are generally milder, you won’t have to drain all the underground pipes as the earth will insulate them enough to keep the water from freezing and thereby bursting the pipes. Unfortunately, here in Denver, you’ll need to err on the side of caution since we do get a pretty deep chill.
Tip 7: Add protection to spigots and hoses
While focusing on winterizing your sprinkler system, don’t forget about your other outdoor water fixtures and equipment. Get and install some styrofoam protection devices for your spigots and be sure to thoroughly drain and store your garden hoses away from snow and ice.
By following these tips on how to winterize your Denver sprinkler system, your irrigation system will be well protected and ready to use in the spring. With a bit of sprinkler knowledge, the right equipment, or just a quick call to a professional like All American Sprinkler and Landscaping, you can save yourself quite the headache come spring.
August 14, 2017
Troubleshooting Your Sprinkler System
Today, All American Sprinkler and Landscaping in Aurora offers some great tips on troubleshooting your sprinkler system. Unfortunately, gadgets don’t always work the way we want them to, but it can often be easy to figure out what the issue is just by knowing what to look for when you need a quick fix.
So, here are five great suggestions to get you started on troubleshooting your sprinkler system.
The Controller isn’t Functioning Correctly
Let’s say you first turn your sprinklers back on after not using them for a while. The controller, basically the electronic core of the system that runs everything, might not be functioning correctly. First, be sure that you turned the water on properly. If that’s not the issue, check the transformer output to verify that the wires going in and out of the controller box look good with no signs of damage.
Water Pressure Too High or Too Low
You may notice that the sprinkler heads aren’t popping all the way out, or the water isn’t thrown as far as it should. This indicates that the water pressure might be low. You may have a blockage somewhere, a leak, or a broken head. If you notice your sprinkler heads misting rather than spraying steadily, you probably have the opposite problem of high pressure which can wear out your system more quickly. Pressure regulating heads or pressure reducers on the valves can help lengthen the life of your system and improve its watering efficiency.
Sprinkler Head Won’t Pop Up
This generally has to do with low water pressure, and you can try the suggestions mentioned above. If it is only one head, however, there could simply be debris inhibiting the head’s ability to come up. Check it carefully for rocks, roots, dirt or anything else that could be the culprit.
Water Puddling on the Lawn or at a Sprinkler Head
There are several potential causes for this issue with your sprinkler system. If the problem is widespread it could be high water pressure, poor drainage or the watering schedule is too intense. If the problem is more concentrated in one area, you could have a leak, or on an uneven property, you may find that the system drains to the lowest heads when it is turned off and leaves puddles around just those heads. A component called check valves can remedy the problem by not allowing the water to drain.
Spray Patterns are Uneven
You might find brown patches where water is not reaching or extra wet patches that are being watered by two heads overlapping each other’s area. Adjust the heads carefully to ensure even watering of your lawn and avoid patchy areas. It could also be that there are a couple of broken heads, so be sure to inspect for that as well.
If you’ve tried troubleshooting your sprinkler system on your own and are still left scratching your head, don’t be afraid to call the experts here at All American Sprinkler and Landscaping in Aurora, Colorado. Our knowledgeable staff can help you with all kinds of sprinkler issues. With our years of experience, we have the know-how to get your sprinkler system running smoothly.
July 13, 2017
Sprinkler and Lawn Watering Tips for Summer
Today, All American Sprinkler and Landscaping in Aurora offers our sprinkler and lawn watering tips for summer. While there is no one size fits all watering schedule, these pointers will help you determine the right amount of water for your lawn so that your grass receives what it needs without wasting water.
An extremely general rule of thumb for how much water your lawn needs is about 1 - 1 ½ inches per week. This can come from irrigation or from rainfall, so be sure to be conscious of how much it is raining.
However, there are a variety of factors that affect this amount. Grass type, soil type, temperature, humidity and lawn age to name a few. If you live in a hot, windy, low humidity area with sandy soil, you will have to water a lot more than if you live in a cooler area with higher humidity. Also, keep in mind that a newer lawn will need more babying as it establishes itself.
Now let’s look at a few helpful tips for finding the right watering schedule for your lawn.
Have the Right System
There is a myriad of different types of sprinkler systems available today, and each type serves a purpose and works best in different situations. Experts like those here at All American Sprinklers can help you choose (and install) the perfect system for your situation.
Determine the Soil Type
Clay takes a long time to absorb water and retains it well for a long time afterward. This means that you should only water for short periods of time otherwise you will create water runoff as the clay can’t absorb the water fast enough. You also won’t have to water as often. However, at the opposite extreme, sandy soil absorbs water quickly and doesn’t retain it well, so you will have to water more frequently.
Watch Your Timing
This is both how long and when you should water. If you see puddles or little streams you should shorten the time you are watering. If you notice that the soil seems dry, either, set your sprinkler system to water for a longer period or water more frequently. Use the timer function to turn the water on and off in a consistent manner. Or you can even get a smart timer that will also monitor rainfall, humidity, and even the evapotranspiration rate, then automatically adjusts your sprinkler system accordingly.
Other things to consider about timing include watering just before the sun comes up to minimize evaporation. However, don’t water during the night because you can eventually cause disease. Also, pay attention to high water use hours in your household, city regulations and avoid those times of the day.
We hope that these sprinkler and lawn watering tips for summer have been helpful to you. For further information contact us here at All American Sprinkler and Landscaping in Aurora. We will help you choose the perfect system and devise the ideal schedule for watering your lawn. With our help, your beautiful lawn will quickly become the envy of the neighborhood.
June 14, 2017
New Fence Considerations
The friendly folks at All American Sprinkler and Landscaping have a few new fence considerations for you if you are thinking about putting in a new one. Fences are a great way to add style and functionality to your outdoor space, but the type of fence to choose is based on a few factors like what kind of material, what you need the fence for and who will be doing the work on it.
When starting a landscape design project, there are several great options for fencing materials, and each comes with its own advantages and disadvantages.
Wood is a great and versatile material with a style that’s easily customizable. Many times, you can find pre-manufactured panels that make installation relatively easy and it’s a great privacy barrier that provides a safe backyard. The major disadvantage with wood fencing is maintenance – you’ll need to paint and seal it from time to time to ensure you maximize its lifespan.
If you don’t want the maintenance, some people choose a vinyl fencing made to look like wood. It’s a durable, low-maintenance option that’s also pretty inexpensive. It also doesn’t have to look like wood; vinyl comes in a wide variety of style and color options so that you can customize it how you like.
Chain link is great if you’re not concerned about privacy. It is durable, long-lasting, relatively maintenance free and inexpensive. If you’re after privacy, though, the plastic inserts and covers that you can use to create a visual barrier with chain link are not very attractive options.
Another area to consider for landscape projects and fencing is how you want to use your yard. Is the fence for aesthetic purposes only? Are you only concerned with corralling kids or pets and giving them a safe space to roam? Do you want to create a privacy barrier for your backyard?
These issues will obviously affect what type of material you choose, as well as the style. If you want to keep a big dog in, the fence will likely have to be built higher than standard fencing. If you often have kids running around, you may want to think about whether the material can be dangerous to them, such as wood giving them splinters.
Who will Install
If you want to try to do the work yourself, that is going to affect what kind of fence to install. Whatever it is will have to fall into your particular skill set and that, of course, depends on your particular level of handyman (or woman) prowess. Choosing professional installers might cost a bit more but it’s a whole lot less work, and you have the broader option of choosing whatever kind of fencing you want and know that it will be installed correctly.
We hope this info about new fence considerations has been helpful. Here at All American Sprinkler and Landscaping, we are all about making your outdoor space comfortable and aesthetically pleasing. A fence is a huge part of that because it is so large and can completely change how your yard looks and functions. To learn more about our landscape services, including fencing, get in touch with us today.