Outdoor Sprinkler Systems
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Do you love a nice, green lawn but dread the work involved in watering? Many people are busy with careers, children, and just everyday life, making time to water the lawn properly a difficult task. With a sprinkler system, you can have the beautiful lawn that you always dreamed of without having to put any effort into getting it done. You can install your own sprinkler system but keep in mind that this is a big project. Regardless, with proper planning and time, you will soon be enjoying your new sprinkler system so you can spend your time on better things.

Before you start putting in a sprinkler system, you will need to first contact your gas and electric company to determine if there are any gas or electrical lines that could be accidentally cut while digging. They will guide you to ensure the project goes easy and you remain safe. Next, you need to check with your city to see if a building permit is required. Finally, talk to your water utility company or city hall about your local watering ordinances. Other things you need to consider include the following:

Water Pressure � Your water pressure will need to be checked with a special pressure gauge. You can rent one if necessary to determine how much pressure you have in pounds per square inch (PSI). When taking the reading, be sure every faucet is turned off and the dishwasher, shower, or washing machine are not running.

Water Meter � You can look on your existing water meter to determine the current size. If you cannot see it, either check on your last utility bill or contact your local water company. If your water comes from a well, you would need to get the size of the pump, which can be obtained by contacting the manufacturer.

Service Line � When laying a sprinkler system, you will need to use the same size of irrigation pipe as what you have for a supply line. This can be done by taking a piece of string and wrapping it around the water pipe. For example, if the string measures 2 3/4-inches, you would need a 3/4-inch copper pipe. If the string were 4 inches, you would need a one-inch PVC or galvanized pipe. You can take your measurement to your local hardware or home improvement store and they can set you up with the appropriate pipe.

Flow Rate � The flow rate is measured as gallons per minute. To determine this, you can use a container with a measurable capacity such as a bucket. Turn the water on outside and then using a watch with a second-hand, time how long it takes to fill the bucket to a measurable level. Then, divide the filled container in gallons by the time it took to fill it in seconds. That number is then multiplied by 60 seconds, which is your flow rate.

Finally, before you get started with the digging process, you need to have a solid layout of where all the pipes will go. This means working with a pad of paper and pencil and laying the system out to work around trees, shrubs, flowerbeds, sidewalks, fences, and so on.
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