Sprinkler Timer/Clock

We have found that a common trick for watering is known only to the “industry experts.” Well, we are going to give up the goods! This year, when programming your clock change the time around a little bit to prevent run off and allow the water to soak in better. This trick is easy. Most clocks, have either an A, B, C program setting or they have multiple “System start times.” Say you water each station for 30 minutes starting at 4:00 am and you have 4 stations. Instead of going down the line, stations 1-4, for 30 minutes each then being done, break it up! Set each station to run for half the time, say 15 minutes, starting at 4am as usual. Now, add a second program B, and tell the irrigation system to run all four zones one more time, for 15 minutes a piece, starting at 5:15 am. If you have “multiple start times” options, just add a second start time at 5:15. Remember, you’re still getting 30 minutes per zone/station.

Here is why we do this. We have poor clay soil here in the metro area. Clay holds water well, yet it is hard to get water to soak into the clay, so it needs time to penetrate! By starting the second round at 5:15 am, you are giving 1 hour time since zone 1 ended, and the cycle begins again! Instead of trying to force all of the water on the soil at once, you’re only introducing half at a time, letting it soak in nice and deep, and then reintroducing the second half of your water when you know you’re no longer going to get run off. This is a great technique on hilly areas! You can even get crazy and have it water for 1/3 the amount of time and go around three times! Either way, prevent run off and wasting water, and make sure you’re getting the best bang for your water bill buck!

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