Soaker hose not soaking right, plants turning crispy...

rachel77(7 TX)July 22, 2005

I have a couple of different brands of soaker hose, and one does not soak as much as the that good or bad? I'm not sure of the brands. Or do some just not "show" it? I felt beneath the offending hose and it's not damp. I've been having to water by hand a few times a week because the shrubs are becoming crispy.


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Do you have your soaker on a timer? How many gallons are you using? I know this sounds silly, but check the connection if you have it attached to another hose, maybe they aren't connected properly. Also, have you pulled it out to see what is happening when the water is on?? I have lots of soakers and some of the brands have a small circular ring inside that moves side to side sometimes, I just take mine out and they work fine. Just a few possibilities, I don't even want to think about hand watering out in this heat!!!!!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2005 at 10:27PM
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pardalinum(z8 PNW)

Is your "slow leaker" connected to other hoses or is it used separately on it's own? If it is connected to other hoses, the water will seek the path of least resistance, meaning the hoses with the greater porosity. Try testing the offending hose alone with the end capped off. If it seems to work ok (maybe take a little higher water pressure) it might be better to use it as a "stand alone" soaker, not connected to other soakers.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2005 at 2:11AM
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There is an optimum length for soakers as well - I don't recommend anything over 75' and 50' is better to deliver water at an even flow along the entire length. And I'd be curious as to how long you leave it running. Soil conditions will ultimately determine how long a soaker should soak but you want water penetration down 6-8 inches - in my garden with well-draining, amended soil, this takes about 4-6 hours. And make sure water pressure is correct - porous soakers (those made from recycled tires) should just gently ooze water or sweat so that absorption is very gradual and complete.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2005 at 10:21AM
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rachel77(7 TX)

Thanks, everybody! I'm going to go brave the heat later and try everything you suggested...The "bad" hose is connected too the others, so I'll check the connections, etc. I'll let y'all know how it turns out.


    Bookmark   July 23, 2005 at 1:53PM
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If this is the last hose in a chain of hoses, it might be that there isn't enough water pressure to get the water to that hose. I had a problem with that and I bought a cheap hose switcher that I put two soakers on and then I only have to move the switch when one gets enough water.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2005 at 4:08PM
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We had that problem last summer. We connected two fifty footers together. It didn't work right. Our garden is 12 x 24 with a slight incline. Running the soakers up and down the incline was a problem too. This year, we ran it across the incline and made two connections. After I soak the upper half of the garden with the first fifty footer, I disconnect and connect it to the lower half of the garden. Next summer, we are going to use a timer if we can get one on sale. This summer, we have really used the soaker hoses--there is no rain and the heat is bad. We love the soaker hoses and so does the tomatoes.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2005 at 5:54PM
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are the soaker hoses expensive, has any one ever made one from a regualar water hose?

    Bookmark   September 16, 2005 at 9:33PM
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username_5(banned for no reason)

soaker hoses are not expensive. They can be made from regular hoses, but are very difficult to get good water flow from. I wouldn't recommend it, but if you have an old hose destined for the trash there is nothing wrong with trying.

You can get hoses many places, most sell porous hoses that 'sweat' along their entire surface. These attach to regular garden hoses/faucets. Another type is the pre drilled hoses usually used with a drip irigation system. These have drip emitters along their length evenly spaced anywhere from 6" to 24" apart.

If you have to run the hose up an incline or if you have pressure issues with some hoses the latter type are preferable because the preinstalled emitters are 'pressure compensating'. That just means they are designed to emit water at a certain rate within a given water pressure range.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2005 at 9:59AM
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lonmower(zone8 Western Oregon)

Thought I would revive this thread with a question
I got out my two soakers
A 50 footer (working fine)
The 25 footer seems to be plugged (?????)
Both were stored in the garage
They are hooked up independently
Did not have this problem when I put them away last fall

Do these hosed get plugged
How to fix


    Bookmark   May 17, 2008 at 9:17PM
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Thanks, Cattlady!!! I was having same prob. Hooking 2 50 footers together..the further hose not working properly. This is, if I run one, then the other, am I using more water?

Thanks again...I'm going to try running separately!

    Bookmark   June 23, 2011 at 1:51PM
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