Proper irrigation is a vital part of keeping your lawn lush, green, and healthy. This is especially true here in Middle Georgia where we often experience extended dry periods with high temperatures during the summer. It is critical to keep your irrigation system performing at its best during these times. Having an annual inspection will make sure your system works like it is supposed to all summer long. The best part is, it can also save you money in several ways too! Keep reading to learn more about the importance of annual irrigation inspections and see how much they can save you.
We recommend having your irrigation system inspected at least every two years. Really it is best to have inspections done annually though. The best time to have your system inspected is during the spring once the weather starts warming up, basically when it's time to turn it back on after the winter. Terry McNair, owner of Real Turf Solutions, explains irrigation system inspections in the video below.
Catch Problems before they're a Problem
Sprinkler repairs are a normal part of owning an irrigation system. Irrigation system components often wear out or get broken for various reasons over the course of the year. These issues are often nothing more than a simple routine irrigation repair when caught early on. You can end up with a much bigger problem on your hands if you don't catch these issues though.
A broken sprinkler head can lead to a section of your lawn not receiving enough water and your grass could die. A leaking pipe that goes unnoticed can run up your water bill. It can also create moisture issues in your lawn and lead to fungal problems in the turf.
Improve Spray Coverage
It's important to make sure your irrigation system is providing head-to-head spray coverage. If you notice that your lawn seems to have some dry spots, or spots that don't appear to be getting enough water, this is probably due to inadequate coverage. Coverage is something that a professional irrigation technician will check when inspecting your system. It is usually an easy fix, requiring only a few simple adjustments to correct.
Retrofit for More Efficient Irrigation
Irrigation systems which were state-of-the-art ten years ago are highly inefficient by today's standards. Don't worry though, you don't need to replace your entire irrigation system. Old irrigation systems can be retrofitted with the latest components to bring them up to date. Terry explains more about retrofitting irrigation systems in the video below.
There are also many new optional smart irrigation components which you can retrofit your old irrigation system with. These smart components include technology like WiFi controllers and rain sensors. These can greatly improve your system's efficiency and prevent over watering. If you install a smart controller, you'll be able to control your system remotely from your phone as well.
Optimize Watering Schedule
You don't want to just water your lawn at any time of the day. There's a proper time for watering which is the healthiest for your turf. Watering should be done in the early morning, about an hour before sunrise. This will allow the water to soak into the soil, but not remain wet for too long of a time. If you water in the evening, the soil stays wet all night. This creates the conditions that fungal issues thrive in. Watering your lawn in the middle of the day can result in the soil drying out too fast before the water is absorbed down deep into the root system.
You also need to water your lawn for the right duration of time. You want to be watering deep and infrequent. This means your system should water your grass about 30-45 minutes per zone every other day. Watering your lawn for only 10-15 minutes every day doesn't get the water down deep into the soil, especially in the hot summer months. This means the roots of your grass will stay close to the surface, making them more vulnerable to drought. By watering deep and infrequent, you encourage those roots to grow down deeper into the soil to find that water. When the drought comes and watering restrictions are put in place, your turf will be better prepared to survive.
Our irrigation technicians always check the programed schedule on your controller with every irrigation service call. Make sure your irrigation contractor does this for you when having your system serviced.
Irrigation systems aren't something that you can just put in the ground and never have to touch again. There are a number of checks that need to be carried out periodically. Just like your vehicle will eventually break down if you don't have it serviced, your irrigation system will break down if it isn't serviced. If you have any questions or concerns about your irrigation system, we're always happy to help!
By: William Adams
In 09/2018 William started at Real Turf working in the field having never done manual labor before. He wasn't expected to last the first day. Terry recognized ways William could benefit the company more, and after 5 months of working full-time on lawn service and enhancement crews, William was given a position doing digital marketing, IT, & quality control work.