Sprays vs. Rotors

Sprays vs. Rotors

When designing an irrigation system we need to decide which type of sprinkler head to use. There are many factors that go into the decision of head selection, including area to be watered, plant material, amount of sun, water pressure, and water drainage. Taking all these components into account allows us to determine an educated solution as to which type of head to use.

Let’s go over the difference between a few of the sprinkler heads that are out there. The two main varieties of sprinkler heads are spray heads and rotary heads. The major difference is that spray heads have a constant stream of water and rotary heads rotate over the area they are watering. Spray heads are designed for smaller areas, like along a house or in smaller landscaped areas. Spray heads pop up out of the ground between 2 and 12 inches. They have a constant stream of water between 2 to 20 feet. These heads put out about three times as much water as a rotary head, and for this reason it is usually not a good idea to put these heads on the same zone. Rotary heads are able to cover greater distances and are more beneficial to large areas of lawn.

When we come across areas where it would be much easier to use a spray head on a rotor zone there is an answer. Using a stream rotor can cover many of the same areas that spray heads do, but at a water distribution rate of a rotor. So utilizing these heads on our rotor zones will help to conserve water and make for a healthy lawn.

Both of these types of heads are necessary in designing irrigation systems. Hopefully this helped to clear up some questions you may have had about why certain types are used in some areas and not in others.

By Bob Balgie, Irrigation Technician at Barrett Lawn Care

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