Clint Allen, Water Application Specialist Sprinkler Packages: When is the Right Time to Update?
Irrigation managers should be aware of:
- Loss of uniformity
- Failure of pressure regulations
- Worn / malfunctioning sprinkler components
- Deformity of nozzle sizing
Restoring accurate uniformity of water application is usually the principle reason for upgrading a
sprinkler package. Since the uniformity of the sprinkler package directly affects not only the accuracy of
water application but also of fertility and herbicide application then being applied through the center
pivot, the condition of the Center Pivot sprinklers is critical. Visual variance in crop production,
especially circular rings, strongly indicate a failing sprinkler package.
Principle Sprinkler Manufacturing leaders point to a suggested sprinkler component life expectancy of
10,000 hours. This is especially true of the Pressure Regulator that is critical for supplying consistent,
accurate pressure to the sprinkler and nozzle. Failure rates of Regulators in any package are not
equivalent as their springs and internal components weaken and designed pressures and GPM increase
intermittently causing dry and wet circular “rings” around fields.
But awareness of an estimated 10,000 hours of life and being observant of sprinkler performance
conditions, consistency of crop production, and visual uniformity of sprinkler components and patterns
will indicate a reasonable time to update a sprinkler package. It has often been said that: “A sprinkler
package installed when needed, does not cost, but actually pays through the resulting increased net
When any questions or concerns regarding a sprinkler package uniformity arise, please contact Lad
irrigation to speak with a knowledgeable representative.
Clint Allen / Water Application Specialist/ Lad Irrigation / 509-521-3533