What You Need to Know About a Home Irrigation System

Posted on: 13 April 2016

Getting the right home irrigation system can mean having a lush, green lawn and healthy garden and landscaping without having to worry about actually standing on the lawn with a hose or having to manually switch on the sprinklers. A home irrigation system can offer you more features and options than you may realize, but it can be worth it to investigate each of these features so you know which are right for your home and your outdoor plants. Note a few tips and things to remember before buying a home irrigation system.

1. Hydrozones 

It may be suggested to you that you create hydrozones in your lawn when you're choosing a new irrigation system. This refers to different zones that will get different amounts of water, or will have different types of irrigation systems for how they deliver the water. 

Note a few differences for hydrozones. For perennials and shrubs, you may want a drip system rather than a sprinkler, as the drip system will deliver water closer to the plant's roots. A sprinkler will deliver water to the top of the plant so that it needs to work harder to move that water down to the roots. With a drip system that sits on the ground, the plants gets water as they would in their native habitat without the extra work, so perennials and shrubs may grow stronger and heartier. You may also use less water with drip systems installed in these zones, as less moisture is likely to run off while the plant is absorbing it. Keep a sprinkler system for hydrozones with grass and shorter plants that need water delivered to their tops and which can keep them cooler in warmer weather.

2. Sensors

To ensure your irrigation system works properly, invest in the right sensors for the system. A rain sensor will keep the irrigation system shut off when it rains so you're not wasting water. An evapo-transpiration or ET system works to note the angles of the sun, how much morning dew has evaporated from your lawn, and other such features so that it can either turn off completely or adjust its own watering schedule accordingly. This may be the biggest investment for your irrigation system but it can make it the most cost-effective in the long run, as it means the irrigation system doesn't just continually run despite the surrounding weather conditions. This can also offer the most protection from overwatering for your plants and lawn.