The irrigation industry is experiencing a renaissance of technology development. Now more than ever, consumers can find irrigation products that use advanced sensors, Wi-Fi, and app-based capability to automatically adjust watering schedules, communicate problems and save water, giving consumers more data and power to control irrigation systems.
“Smart” irrigation systems irrigate landscapes efficiently. Without wasting water, these systems use technology to know when and how much to irrigate. The days of being beholden to a clock and calendar are over. We are now using real-time data to apply the right amount of water at the right time of day.
By investing in smart irrigation technologies, you can be sure to save water, money, and time in caring for your commercial landscape. Here are three irrigation technologies worth considering on your next upgrade:
Weather-based controller. These controllers adjust the irrigation schedule based on local weather conditions. There is a wide range of products in this category with various weather inputs and landscape-specific adjustment factors. These controllers self-adjust and require very little intervention when programmed correctly.
Sensor-based controller. These controllers rely on soil moisture sensors placed below ground in the root zones of the landscape to determine if and for how long to water. Systems with a sensor-based controller can be scheduled to run based on soil moisture and the specific water needs of your landscape.
Rain/freeze sensors. Irrigating in rain and freezing conditions needlessly wastes water and can damage your landscape. Rain sensors prevent irrigation systems from running during rainy conditions. Rain/freeze sensors add the ability to stop irrigation when temperatures approach freezing to prevent damage to the plants. These devices can reduce overall water usage and help extend irrigation system life.
One size does not fit all, so consult with one of our certified irrigation professionals when you’re ready to upgrade. LMC is a premier partner with Weathermatic, the World’s leader in smart irrigation technology.
Maintain your system & consider high-value upgrades: Why & how often?
Irrigation systems need regular maintenance to keep them working efficiently year after year. Damage from lawn equipment or improper winterization can cause leaks and other serious problems that can cost you a significant amount of wasted water.
Here are a few checks to perform on a monthly, yearly or periodic basis to make sure you’re maximizing your investment.
Adjust sprinkler heads. Remove or correct obstructions that prevent sprinklers from distributing water evenly. Adjust sprinkler head positions and spray patterns to avoid watering sidewalks or structures and to provide necessary clearance over growing plants.
Check the pressure. Pressure can change over time and negatively affect your system’s efficiency. Too high of pressure can result in too much water applied too quickly, causing runoff.
Inspect your system for leaks. Leaks are a huge water waster. A good irrigation contractor can perform regular maintenance checks for leaks, broken or clogged spray heads, and other problems. Ask your contractor to show you common problems to watch for between visits.
Winterize in colder climates. An irrigation contractor with specialized equipment will flush out water that could freeze and crack pipes, valves and sprinklers. It’s easy to overlook this type of maintenance but forgoing it could result in costly damage to your system.
Have your system audited. Hire an irrigation professional to conduct an irrigation audit and uniformity test to verify areas are being watered evenly and appropriately. Make necessary adjustments.
A smart irrigation system is only as smart as the professional who installs it and the customer who uses it. Make the most of your investment and hire certified irrigation professional, like LMC.