Nearly 81% of Americans have a lawn. If you’re one of them, chances are you’re invested in taking care of it. Lawns come in all shapes and sizes, and serve different purposes for different people. Whether your yard is beautifully landscaped, or simply an area for the kids to run and play, keeping your grass and garden beds healthy matters. If making sure your property looks its best is one of your top priorities, then you may be interested in an automatic sprinkler system.
How Does an Automatic Sprinkler System Work?
Also referred to as an automatic irrigation system, inground sprinklers are now a mainstay in homes across the United States. Automatic sprinkler systems have been in existence for almost 100 years. Formerly developed for agriculture, they exploded in popularity as the technology became more accessible. Nowadays, a large percentage of homeowners list a sprinkler system as one of their most desired features.
Automatic irrigation systems work by connecting a system of sprinkler heads to a main control panel using sensors. Much like air conditioning or central heat systems, owners are able to program their system. High degrees of customization are available. Watering can even scheduled for specific days, times, and zones.
The piping for sprinkler systems is buried around a foot deep beneath the surface of the lawn. Pressure of water released from the pipes pushes the heads up, and allows them to retract once water stops flowing.
However, these sprinkler heads do not retract fully underground. This means homeowners should take care when mowing or performing other lawn maintenance. Luckily, damaging one sprinkler head does not result in complete replacement of the set.
The added control of these systems allows you to water your lawn or garden at ideal times of day, (dawn and dusk), without any additional action required. When properly installed and maintained, centralized systems such as these are seamless ways to care for your landscape with very little effort.
Pros of an Automatic Sprinkler System
These systems have gained massive popularity for good reason. For those invested in the ongoing health of their lawn, watering is critical. Technology makes this process simpler, and then some. From lowering your water bill to increasing your property value, automatic sprinklers are a smart investment all around.
1. Prevent Uneven Watering
From a lawn care perspective, uneven watering is a huge inconvenience. Uneven watering can result in dry patches, plants that fail to thrive, and overall spottiness. Additionally, overwatering or improper watering can affect the way that your lawn grows. Watering too frequently can cause roots of grass to grow too shallowly. This can cause greater problems later on, and can deplete soil nutrients over time.
Automatic sprinkler systems are specifically designed to fix these problems. Installers survey your property and give recommendations as to where heads should be installed. The positioning of these heads will create an even watering palette.
Sprinklers benefit not only your lawn, but flower beds as well when positioned correctly. Those with high volumes of landscaping work can ensure all plantings are getting sufficient water. Often, programs are installed to water different sections of your property at different days and times.
If you are struggling to get an even dispersal of water to your property, automatic sprinkler heads can solve this problem without creating problems caused by overwatering.
2. Lower Your Water Bills
Like many water conservation techniques, installing automatic sprinkler systems may seem counter intuitive. How can watering your property from multiple locations at once actually be conserving water? To understand, consider the alternatives.
Those with mobile sprinklers often place the device in one location for long stretches of time. This placement is often not precise. That results in wasted water for several reasons. Not only are owners likely overwatering specific areas, but a notable amount of water is often not absorbed by the ground at all. Rather, it hits sidewalks and other non permeable surfaces and ultimately becomes run off.
The precision of sprinkler systems ensure very little water hits the ground without being absorbed by your lawn. Furthermore, all areas of your property will be watered at once. Usually, watering occurs for a significantly shorter amount of time than single sprinklers are left to run.
All of this results in less water used, and less water wasted. Logically, this is the perfect recipe for lowering water bills. If you often find yourself hooking up the hose every day, or walking down a wet driveway to find your sprinkler has been sending more water to the concrete than your grass, it may be time to try a different approach.
3. Increase Efficiency
The constant battle of lawn upkeep can be a pain, especially with a large property. Many people are spending way too much time with a hose in hand. An automatic sprinkler is one of the only hands-off ways to maintain your lawn and garden.
Today’s systems have come a long way since they began popping up on lawns across America. Not only are you able to schedule your watering down to the minute, but smart sprinklers can now do even more.
Say your geographical area is experiencing regular or higher than average rainfall. Many of today’s modern systems can detect this and will deactivate your sprinklers. Some can even sense moisture levels in the soil, and adjust watering rates in response. These sensors are just another way you are maximizing efficiency, and preventing waste.
Time you may have previously spent just ensuring your lawn gets enough water, you can now spend on other pursuits such as gardening, planting, or just relaxing in your outdoor space. Pair this no-nonsense appeal with an overall conservation of water and you’ve got a winning combination.
4. Increase Property Value
Even for those who do not place much emphasis on the upkeep of their lawn and garden, there are still compelling reasons to invest in an automatic sprinkler system. If you are looking to resell your home at any point, doing simple things that maximize the value of your property is always smart.
Even if you are not much bothered with upkeep of your yard, perhaps the next family will be. With the amount of Americans who value having lawn and garden space, it’s a safe bet that a sprinkler system will be an attractive feature.
While the actual installation of the system may not be cheap, it should be a largely singular expense. If you’re aiming to maximize your return on your current home, this is one of the simplest upgrades you can make to your outdoor living space.