Tips for Replacing Sprinkler Head


Most of the problems that you will encounter for your sprinkler heads can be easily fixed even if you are a first timer in doing this kind of task. Damages on sprinkler heads can be caused by lawnmowers, snowplows, dirt, sand, grass clippings, debris or even due to freezing weather elements during the winter season. After you managed to find out the source of the problem for your sprinkler heads you should repair them immediately.
You must make sure to do regular maintenance of your sprinkler system so that you would not be having lots of problems that might occur to your sprinkler heads. Below are some tips that you can learn in terms of replacing sprinkler head on your own.

To replace sprinkler head, you need:

  • A new sprinkler head
  • Screwdriver
  • Square shovel
  • Garden hose
  • PVC pipe glue
  • Pipe cutters or hand saw (as and when required)

Replacing Sprinkler Head

Tips for Replacing your Sprinkler Head

  • First thing that you need to do is to determine what type of sprinkler head you have so that you can purchase the right type for the replacement that you want to do.
    • Make sure that the sprinkler head is suitable with the nozzle. The size of the nozzle that you should be using can be determined from the size printed on the top of the sprinkler head.
    • You would be able to purchase your new sprinkler head from any major home improvement stores available near your house.

The most common types of sprinkler heads used by house owners are the spray types and rotor. Both of them are designed with built-in filters inside its body. The filters are the usual place where dirt or other debris will get clog. This will result to uneven spraying patterns or might also stop your water flow.

  • Next, you have to dig out the broken sprinkler by using a shovel.
    • Make sure that you cut into the top layer of the ground at least a foot around the sprinkler’s head.
    • This step need to be done in a careful manner so that you will not go too deep as you might accidentally cut through your water line or even damaging any parts below the head.
    • You must also avoid lifting the sod while you are digging in order not to do more damage thus making the replacing of your sprinkler’s head much more difficult.
    • Once you manage to cut a foot round or a square patch, you need to carefully remove the sod layer and lift it straight up.
    • After that, you need to use a hand trowel in order to scoop out the dirt around your sprinkler head. Try to remove enough dirt around it to enable you to grab its head with both of your hands.
  • Then, the broken sprinkler head need to be removed by unscrewing it.
    • The broken sprinkler head must be unscrewed using a counterclockwise manner. Make sure that you do it carefully and do not allow any dirt to drop into connection once you have removed the head.
    • After that, you can replace the head with a new one and screw it securely.

If you notice that dirt accidentally drops into the connection, you need to clear them off by flushing the sprinkler’s head with running water that you run through it until you managed to clean the dirt away.

  • After finish clearing any dirt off your connection, you can proceed to screw the new sprinkler head onto the threaded end of your sprinkler line.
    • If your sprinkler head is damaged by a snowplow or a lawnmower, make sure you dig the hole much deeper than the original hole so that the head sits at least ½-inch above the ground.
    • The above level should also help you prevent the head from being clogged by dirt and grass debris.
    • Then, you need to attach the new sprinkler head to the pipe section through the male coupler and set the head according to the previous height.
    • The next step is to apply PVC pipe glue onto both the pipe and the T-fitting so that it can get into the inside edge of the fitting. Make sure that you hold it for a few seconds in order to allow the glue to set and dry thoroughly.
  • The next thing to do is for you to lift the cap and grasp the stem gently by using your fingers. You can also use the special tool provided with the rotor head by its manufacturer when you purchased the product.
    • Then, the nozzle need to be threaded onto the stem and ensure that it is securely screwed accordingly.
  • For a new sprinkler head that you installed, you need to adjust it accordingly in order to water a specific area of your garden or landscape.
    • The adjustment method that you need to use varies because some sprinkler head types can be adjusted just by turning a slot from its top by using a screwdriver.
    • There are also other sprinkler head that requires special key to be used and insert it into its head to turn and adjust it.
    • While there area also some heads that allows you to adjust its spraying pattern simply by turning a tiny screw that you can find next to its nozzle.

    Always remember that whenever you want to replace your sprinkler head,

    • Make sure to check for any cracks or broken plastic casing on the heads, or sprinkler heads which does not pop-up and also the sprays that distribute water in a wildly manner or even does not spray water at all. It is common for a sprinkler heads to be broken due to the water pressure that has been set too high as well as being run over by vehicles or being hit by the lawn mowers.

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