Can Anybody suggest a contractor for Drip Irrigation

inguvap(z6 NJ)May 16, 2006

I am in East Windsor and I was trying to do DIY Drip Irrigation, but it does not seem to work. I only tried in one bed so far and that is a major bust. Now that I have veggies in the back yard and about 55 rose bushes and assorted perennials and large number of annuals in the front yard, it would not be easy for me to water by hand during summer. I am looking for any recommendations for any contractors who are reliable and a bit cheaper. Please give me any names....

Padma.

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actuary97(NJ)

I was going to try it DIY myself, but haven't gotten to it

What was the problem?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2006 at 3:44PM
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inguvap(z6 NJ)

I bought this cheapo kit from HD and tried it exactly according to the manual. Once I turned on the water, all the pressure valves inserted into the 1/2" tubing to connect to 1/4" tube blown over. I am not sure whether it is too much pressure but these are supposedly called as pressure valves. Now I have ordered 2 kits from dripworks.com along with head assembly (I have 2 outlets one in fron and one in the back. Meanwhile, my husband and I discussed and agreed that we should seek help from a pro. I will try one more time but I still think that it would be better to get outside help. Did you buy the necessary stuff already? Where do you live? If you are nearby, we may help each other and see if we both can do the DIY way.
Padma.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2006 at 4:57PM
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actuary97(NJ)

I haven't done too much other than think about it at this point. Right now I am in the middle of getting a few beds put in. My goal is to try to get the irrigation system in by the time the hot weather hits (July and August). I am in Parsippany so thats a little too far to help out directly. Keep posting, I would appreciate hearing about your experience.

Regards

Dave

    Bookmark   May 16, 2006 at 8:10PM
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actuary97(NJ)

I also noticed that there is a forum here just for irrigation.

You may want to seek some help there.

btw you have inspired my, I am going to hit the local Home Depot myself, get the cheapo kit and see how much trouble I can get myself into

Excelsior

Dave

    Bookmark   May 17, 2006 at 12:02AM
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kathrynd(6 NJ)

I have used the DIY kits from Lee Valley and am very happy with them. They have a instructions that help you figure out your water pressure so that you know how much one line can handle. So far so good, I am adding 3 other lines and timers next.
No help with contractor info - sorry.

ps - I love Lee Valley - wonderful cool stuff. I have ordered on the web from them many times with no problems.

Here is a link that might be useful: Lee Valley

    Bookmark   May 17, 2006 at 8:24AM
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fmart322(Z6SNJ)

You Said:
"I bought this cheapo kit from HD and tried it exactly according to the manual. Once I turned on the water, all the pressure valves inserted into the 1/2" tubing to connect to 1/4" tube blown over. I am not sure whether it is too much pressure but these are supposedly called as pressure valves."

The valves and tubing, are they plastic? If so, did you insert the small brass tubing into the plastic before you tightened it? That could be your problem. Could you give me a link of the product so I could see it for myself, I may be able to help.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 12:48PM
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inguvap(z6 NJ)

fmart322, There are no brass brass tubing. There is nothing that is close to any metal for that matter in this kit. Every thing is plastic and there is a punch tool that came with the kit and that is also plastic. I punched the hole and inserted the presuure valve. I will see if I could get the name of the kit once I go home(I am working right now).
Anyways, where are you in NJ? I would really love any kind of help you could offer so I can save some time not hand watering all these plants that I am planting so furiously....
Padma.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 4:20PM
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fmart322(Z6SNJ)

I live in Cinnaminson. When you get home send me a link and I'll see if I can help you out.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 4:31PM
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inguvap(z6 NJ)

Hi, This is the link for the kit that I bought...
http://www.orbitonline.com/index.cfm?fa=dripmaster.product&productid=150
Padma

    Bookmark   May 18, 2006 at 9:43PM
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fmart322(Z6SNJ)

It's a shame you don't live closer to me because I think I really could help you out on this one. Your about 40 miles and a 45 min drive from my house. I'm a plumber/pipefitter out of local 322 in S-NJ. I've never done a system like this before but I'm sure I could figure it out. Over the years of doing my trade I've learned that when you use cheaper quality you don't get the results your looking for and it's harder and takes more time to do the job. A contractor will charge you pretty good for this type of job IMO and he'll only guarentee his work for 1 year. Like I tell you later in this post, I still think you can DIY, you just need better connectors and valves. Anyone who can grow that many rose bushes, flowers and vegetables is a handy person in my book. :)

I can see your problem with this system, way to much cheap plastic. Not to mention that the only thing holding the valve(s) into the hose is just a barbed end. You might need a pressure regulator to control the flow of water. Did you try running this at lower pressure (i.e not turning the water on full throttle)? That might help. It just seems to me that they (and most other company's) give you one part that's is of OK quality (hoses) but the most important part (valves and connectors in this case) they give you the cheapest thing they can make.
Did you also try to call the company? You might be able to talk directly to them about your problems. How about goof plugs for any mistakes you made, did they supple any of those? Next time you DIY do it one at a time so you can see if it doesn't work right you can use a goof plug to cover the hole and start a new one.

I do like the idea of the product though but if I were to do it myself, and I still think you can DIY, I would use brass valves and connectors with small stainless steel hose clamps or go to a place and order the better connectors and valves (heavy duty plastic fittings). If you go to any plumbing supply shop, or Lowes and Home depot, you might be able to find parts you are looking for. As we speak I'm trying to find things on the web to help you out. be patient because I'm going away this weekend.

Here are some I found by searching for drip irrigation fittings and valves:

http://www.dripdepot.com/cgi-bin/drip/before_you_begin.html

http://www.christmas-tree-farm.com/dripgarden.html

http://www.christmas-tree-farm.com/drippic012.html

http://www.christmas-tree-farm.com/drippic005.html

http://www.dripirrigation.com/drip_irrigation_info.php?products_id=68

http://www.ext.colostate.edu/PUBS/garden/04702.pdf

    Bookmark   May 19, 2006 at 7:31AM
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fmart322(Z6SNJ)

inguvap, I sent you an e-mail on this subject

    Bookmark   May 23, 2006 at 10:11PM
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actuary97(NJ)

Hey Padma

Have you made any progress on this?

Dave

    Bookmark   May 30, 2006 at 11:45AM
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devyani1964(Z6 NJ)

We have had the Lee Valley drip irrigation system since last summer and have been very happy with it. The most time consuming part was figuring out a layout that worked. I was able to talk to consumer rep at Lee Valley before I ordered the system to make sure that I was ordering the right stuff ( I ordered components separately instead of a kit).

Maybe you could call the dripworks folks and get their help if you run into a problem. Dripworks is a reputable company and I don't think you will have much problems installing your system this time around. Most likely the Home Depot stuff was poor quality as is a lot of the stuff they carry. Good Luck.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2006 at 12:49AM
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inguvap(z6 NJ)

Alright! Time for quick update. I have ordered a couple of items from Dripworks and after staring at the package without opening it for several days (dredging what might happen if I open it), I finally bit the bullet and opened it. It's not as difficult as I thought it would be (OK, I am not talking about opening the package). I have installed the main line in one bed and installed one mini jet sprinkler and turned on the water. It worked. So, with so much enthusiasm, I went ahead and did 6 more to cover the entire area of the bed. Again tested it and it's working. Amazing isn't it? So, with renewed interest, I went ahead and ordered 500' of main line and 50 more sprinklers and other related things with the help of customer service rep. from dripworks and I will be getting the package soon. There are several more issues to dela with as to how many sprinklers can be turned on at a time, how am I going to run the main line in the lawn without dismantling the set up every time we mow the lawn (and without digging the trenches ofcourse), how to replace my old leaky spigot, but I will deal with them one by one)
Thank you for everybody to give the encouragement to procede.
Padma.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2006 at 9:59AM
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fmart322(Z6SNJ)

I knew you could do it! Sorry I couldn't be any more help to you but work had me busy.

Now, your leaky faucet, try tighting the (stuffing box) packing nut under the handle with a pair of pliers. Be gentle and don't try to force it and that could be your problem.

Here's a link:
http://www.prier.com/Partsfinder/C-138/C-138STpacking.htm

    Bookmark   June 3, 2006 at 10:43PM
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Sherwood Botsford(3a)

For other canucks: Northern Garden Supply (Smithers BC) and irrigationdirect.ca (Ontario) both have good stuff, and smart people. NGS has top of the line Netafim stuff. ID is cheaper

ID is an offshoot of an american company. The US branch has a different selection and web site. The canadian site can get you anything on the US site -- at least if you're buying enough of it. (I jsut bought 10,000 feet of mainline tubing. 0.700. And 3000 drippers.)

A lot of drip stuff is designed to work at 15-30 psi. A lot of residential water supplies ar at 50-60 psi. Small bits move away at large veloctiy.

Key things for drip irrigation:

0. Timer. Various timers have a bunch of features. I like the DIG one from Lee Valley, but there are others.

1. Filter. Drip irrigation has tiny parts. Reallllly tiny. You need a 150 mesh filter. Clean it every two weeks until you get a feel for how fast it clogs.

2. Check valve. If you ever inject chemicals into the water this is a necesity. If you don't it still keeps a system from running backwards, and sucking dirt into those tiny openings.

3. Pressure reducer. Get the pressure right for what you are using.

4. Mainline -- comes in various sizes from 0.52" to 2" but for residential 0.52, and 0.60 are the two common sizes, both referred to as 'half inch' And half inch poly pipe from the farm store is 0.620 inside. Go figure. Irrigation mainline is thin and cheap, becuase it's used at low pressure.

5. Drippers, sprays and sprinklers. A dripper is 1/2 to 2 gallons per hour. A sprayer (no moving parts) is typically 4-6 GPH. A sprinkler gives more even distribution and usually runs at 10 GPH. A dripper waters 1 plant. A sprayer has a working diameter of a few feet. A sprinkler has a working diamter of 15-20 feet. Some are adjustable.

Lot of the skill is in balancing the bits so that everyone gets the right amount of water.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2010 at 10:36AM
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percystash

These guys do a lot of good equipment in plastic, especially if you are designing your own system and want to buy the specific parts that you need.
As far as any pressure problems go, getting an accurate measurement of the area you are working with is the first step.

Here is a link that might be useful: Irrigation Global

    Bookmark   April 29, 2010 at 5:41AM
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