When Should I Turn On My Irrigation System in Reno?


After that historic winter, it seems like we’ve finally turned a corner into warmer weather. That has many people wondering whether it’s time to turn on the outdoor sprinklers. Of course, here in northern Nevada, there is traditionally a bit of a risk. Turn them on too early, and you run the risk of frozen pipes if we get a cold snap (which could happen!). Turn them on too late, and your garden doesn’t get the water it needs. That’s not really the case this season, with so moisture in the ground, but the question remains. When should I turn on my irrigation system in Reno and Sparks? 

It’s Just About Time

The rule of thumb here in northern Nevada for planting is to wait until the snow is off Peavine. As far as irrigation, check out the ten-day forecast. The first to third week of April is pretty typical, and some people have already turned theirs on. We’re already scheduling people for irrigation services, so if you’re planning on leaving this to the professionals, contact us today to get on our list.

Irrigation Start-Up

Here at Harris Landscape Construction, we offer irrigation shut-down and start-up services, and it’s something worth considering, especially this year. We had a colder, wetter winter than usual, with lots of snow, which can mean any number of issues in your pipes and sprinklers that may not be noticeable until you turn them on. It’s common for a number of problems to arise with residential irrigation systems come spring, and that’s especially true after a hard winter. Let our team resolve these issues and offer helpful solutions like adjusting or relocating sprinkler heads for improved efficiency while they’re at it. We can also troubleshoot problems like wasted or inadequate watering, as well as any flooding or drainage concerns.

If you plan to manage your own irrigation start-up, here are a few tips;

  • Slowly open the main water valve, which will give your pipes time to fill slowly. Opening the valve too quickly can create a high-pressure surge and uncontrolled water flow, both of which can lead to cracks. If you’re wondering whether you’re doing it right, contact HLC today and we’ll send someone over!
  • Manually activate each zone from your controller to make sure everything is working as it should. Check individual sprinkler heads for proper rotation and coverage, and look to make sure there are no leaks. Take this opportunity to check for low-pressure areas, which can indicate a broken or missing sprinkler or a line break. You’ll likely need to adjust sprinkler heads, and you’ll also want to clean the filters on any sprinklers that appear to be underperforming.
  • Program your controller for automatic water, and double check the back-up battery too. If your system has a weather sensor, uncover and clean that too, along with the back flow preventer.

Prefer to leave your irrigation start-up to a pro? We get it! Contact HLC in Reno today, and we’ll get you on our spring schedule. It’s the easiest way to ensure your irrigation system is ready for the warm weather just ahead.


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