How to Find Leaks in Your Under Ground Sprinkler System

We’re going to go through the steps to help you find out if you have an in ground sprinkler system leak.

Fixing leaks not only saves you money but also helps protect the environment by avoiding unnecessary water use.

The first step to check for leaks is to read your water meter

When familiar with your meter take a look at your low flow indicator and see if it is moving when not using water inside and out. If it is, then you have a leak.

If you do have a leaking sprinkler system find your main sprinkler system valve and shut it off. This valve may be inside your home coming off the main water line from your water meter or outside your home near your water tap.

Now that the water is shut off take a look at your local indicator.

If it keeps moving the leak is inside your home. If the low flow indicator stops moving the leak is in your main sprinkler system pipe. So, you’ve discovered you have a leak in your main sprinkler system pipe.

Next, we will do a visual check to determine if and your irrigation zone have a leak.

Start by turning on the sprinkler system valve again and wait at least two minutes.

This allows the main sprinkler system pipe to refill with water. Go to your controller and turn on one zone. The first thing to do is look and listen. Do you hear water running? Do you see water bubbling up from the ground? Are there any wet spots or pooling of water? It is good practice to check the sprinkler heads throughout the zone to make sure they’re not broken. If water is not hitting the target area or flowing out of sprinkler heads, this needs to be replaced.

Repeat this process for each zone. If you see any of these indicators you may have a leak.

Turn off sprinkler system shut off valve once again. Then call a certified irrigation contractor if you don’t already have one, if you’re located in the Tampa Florida area we would love to help. We do recommend you avoid using the sprinkler system until it is inspected an fixed.

With an in ground sprinkler system there are things you can do to prevent a find leaks early.

Make sure you check for leaks throughout the summer. Reference or create a sketch of the location or sprinkler system so you don’t accidentally miss checking all the heads. If your system comes on at night which most do, try putting it on during the day to find leaks.

The most effective way to prevent sprinkler system leaks. is proper winterization. This involves using an air compressor to blow all the water out of the system and shutting off the sprinkler system valve. If you don’t know how to do it yourself, call a certified irrigation contractor.

If any of your pipes are not buried and exposed to sunlight they can degrade and crack. Check them throughout the season. Be careful when aerating or mowing your lawn. Over time pipes can shift or be damaged by the aerator or mower.

Check for loose fittings. Sometimes tightening the joints between pipes or tightening sprinkler heads is enough to stop or prevent a leak. Now that you know how to check for leaks in a sprinkler system take time to check yours. Remember, leaks waste water and cost money. I’d rather use that money towards keeping beautiful landscape, wouldn’t you?