Irrigation System Maintenance: Your Handy Annual Checklist

The checklist is a great invention. It helps make sure you get your car oil changed, you remember to bring your swimsuit to your beach vacation and you don’t forget to buy Oreos. 

You need a checklist for your lawn sprinkler system maintenance, too.

There’s a lot going on out there. Or, at least, there should be. 

Here’s a handy irrigation system maintenance checklist for the year to help you stay on top of it all.

Spring Irrigation System Checklist

It all starts in spring, when your sprinkler system wakes up from its winter nap and gets ready to roll.

sprinkler heads water grass

Hello, Sprinkler Heads

Idaho winters can be tough on your sprinkler heads. Take a good look at each one before you expect it to start the season.

  • Frost can cause the ground to heave, nudging  your sprinkler heads out of alignment. You don’t want them spraying the side of your house or your driveway instead of your lawn.
  • Are any sprinkler heads leaking? Or clogged with winter debris?
  • Any damage from snow plows?

Stuff happens. High on your irrigation system checklist: inspect each head before you start up your sprinkler system for spring.

Adjust Your Irrigation Controller

Time to reprogram your controller settings for what time of day your irrigation system should run and for how long. There are four distinctly different seasons here, so this is a key part of irrigation system maintenance in Idaho Falls.

Why Waste Water? Read our Guide to Smart Irrigation
Remember, you can’t just set your controller and forget it. If the last time you looked at your controller was last August, it was hot then, and sunny.

Spring is cool and rainy — your irrigation system won’t need to run as often.

Watering needs change throughout the seasons, so adjust your controller as the seasons change.

Check Your Rain Sensor

If you have a rain sensor, make sure the batteries are still working and that it’s clear and not obstructed by debris.

Irrigation Zone Time

Irrigation zones are set up so the different areas of your yard get the perfect amount of water for their unique needs, without waste. It’s important that they’re all working just right. 

Make sure each of your sprinkler system zones turn on and off and run properly. Manually activate each zone from the controller.

sprinkler heads water flowers

Is each head rotating properly? Spraying where it should? Do you see any leaks? 
As you inspect each zone, adjust heads as needed and remove any debris that might be clogging them. 

Does the pressure seem low in any of the heads? Low pressure can indicate problems, like a leak in your line. You want to take care of any needed repairs now, before the busy watering season begins.

Summer Irrigation System Checklist

You’ve been absorbing a lot here. Let’s make it easy: just repeat those spring steps for summer. 

Summer is the most challenging season for irrigation system maintenance, so it’s a good idea to check your sprinkler heads, zones and controller again to make sure everything’s ready for the busiest watering season. 

sprinkler head waters grass

You don’t want your system to fail just when your thirsty lawn and plants need it the most. 

Fall Irrigation System Checklist

Fall is a biggie. It’s time to winterize your sprinkler system, and this task is super important. 

You absolutely have to get all the water out of your irrigation system’s pipes, valves and heads before the first freeze. It’s a key part of irrigation system maintenance in Idaho Falls.

You can thank science. When water freezes, it expands, which causes sprinkler components to break — which means  costly repairs for you. 

We know what you might be thinking. You have a handy home air compressor. It’s kind of fun to use. Why not just blow out those lines yourself? 

irrigation technician holds cracked valve in hands

Bad idea. Your workshop or garage air compressor blows with high pressure, but not much volume.

You need a big wall of air to get that water out, which means a pro-level air compressor designed for this job. Your high-pressure compressor can actually damage your irrigation system. 

Better leave this irrigation system checklist job to the pros.

Don’t Forget the Backflow

If water freezes in the important backflow device of your sprinkler system, you’ll face a pricey repair in the spring.

Backflows come in different types, with varying procedures needed to winterize them. Irrigation specialists are on top of it and will tackle the job as part of fall irrigation system maintenance.

Ready for Expert  Lawn Sprinkler System Maintenance in Idaho Falls? Trust Outback

If we remember this right, your checklist had a swimsuit on it and Oreos. So what are you doing spending valuable time on an irrigation system maintenance checklist? You clearly have more fun things to do. 

Outback’s skilled irrigation technicians will expertly tackle all your irrigation system checklist tasks, checking your controller, sprinkler heads and zones and taking care of any fixing, replacing or adjusting that’s needed.

And since we have most of the parts necessary for repairs on our irrigation maintenance trucks, you’ll be back to perfect watering in no time, so your landscaping is thriving and you’re not wasting water. 

Regular sprinkler inspections will also help us catch potential problems before they become big, costly ones.

Give us a call. 

Located in Idaho Falls, Idaho, we serve residential and commercial properties in Idaho Falls, Rexburg and Pocatello, Idaho, as well as Bonneville, Madison and Bannock counties. Call us at 208-656-3220, or fill out the form here to schedule an onsite consultation.

We’d love to hear from you.

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