With the warmer weather rolling around again, it’s time to think of fresh air, budding blooms and greener grass — which means it’s time to think about your yard. To get in the spring spirit and make sure your lawn is healthy for the summer, it’s important to bring your yard out of its winter hibernation.
When it comes to caring for your grass and plants as the temperature rises, the first step is irrigation. You want your yard to get the right amount of water through the spring and summer, but you might not know how or when to start up your sprinkler system. Here are a few sprinkler tips to help you have the best lawn in your neighborhood.
What Is a Sprinkler System Start-Up?
As an irrigation system designed to provide your grass and plants with the water they need to flourish, sprinklers allow you to control the health of your lawn. To preserve water and prevent freezing in the cold weather, you’ll usually shut down your sprinkler system before winter. When spring starts to bloom again, you’ll need to take the steps in reverse to properly turn your system back on.
Depending on your type of sprinkler system and the components involved, your start-up process may require different steps — but the typical steps of a sprinkler start-up include:
- Checking Your System Controllers: It’s important to clean away debris, check for repairs and replace your controller batteries, if necessary.
- Checking Sprinkler Heads and Nozzles: Clean up dirt, check for clogs, clear away debris and check for damage to your nozzles and sprinkler heads before start-up.
- Inspecting Valves and Pipes: Look for leaks or signs of damage in your above-ground hardware before turning on your valves. You should turn the pipes on slowly to introduce water without causing pressure surges.
- Setting Timers: Turn on your system’s timers to ensure your watering occurs on a set schedule.
Why Is a Sprinkler System Start-Up Important For Your Lawn?
Starting your sprinkler system the right way is important both for your lawn and the system itself. Watering should begin gradually during the spring, so your yard is on a consistent irrigation schedule and won’t get dry in the summer heat. Your system also needs to get used to a watering schedule — if you suddenly turn the sprinklers on full blast when it gets hot, the sudden pressure could cause damage to your valves and nozzles.
Starting your sprinkler system properly offerings the following benefits:
- Promotes your plant and lawn health
- Prevents damage to pipes and backflow devices
- Saves money by alerting you to wear and tear early in the season
Factors to Consider Before Setting Up the System
Just like you need to prepare your sprinkler system for spring, you need to get your lawn ready for the new season. Before you go ahead with your sprinkler system start-up, make sure to:
- Clean up debris from the winter
- Use a soil test to determine the health of your yard — and decide what your watering schedule should be
- Trim and de-thatch to clear out dead growth, if necessary
Best Time of Year to Start Up Your Sprinkler System
Wondering when to start up your sprinkler system? Depending on your system, location and comfort with the possibility of freezing, you have a window from early April to late May. Here are your start-up options:
- April 1-15: If you have insulated valves or know how to drain your backflow device to prevent possible damage from freezing, start in early April.
- April 16-30: If you want an early start, are willing to monitor temperatures and will wrap your devices when it gets cold, mid- to late April is acceptable.
- May 1-15: When you want to avoid freezing and still stay ahead of the dry season, start your sprinklers in early May.
- May 15 or Later: After mid-May, you can be sure the frost will stay away.
Contact Nature’s Helper To Start Your Sprinklers for the Season
When you want help from an expert to ensure your start-up goes smoothly, Nature’s Helper is your helping hand. With more than 18 years in the sprinkler business, we know exactly how to handle all brands of sprinklers and irrigation systems. Call (402) 334-2625 or contact us today to professionally prepare your sprinkler system for spring.