Sprinkler System Flow Rate

Looking for the perfect sprinkler is easy, applying it needs time but before anything else, you need to know about the two things that are essential before purchasing the sprinklers and hoses. One is the water pressure and two is the flow rate. You need to determine how much pressure you will need to make it run properly.

At different pressures, the sprinkler head and nozzle will consume different amounts of water. For example, for rotors, this is about 45 psi, with an operating range of 25 to 65 psi. For spray heads, it is 30 psi, with an operating range of 15 to 30 psi. For drip lines, this is about 20 psi, with an operating range of 15 to 30 psi.

How much pressure needed for a Sprinkler System?

The average water pressure for most residents and commercial owners is ranging between 30 psi and 50 psi. Most sprinkler systems are made to use a pressure of around 30 psi. If you want to find out how much pressure you need for your home you need to buy a pressure gauge. Simply attach it to the outdoor faucet, and it will tell you the current pressure that is using.  

How much pressure can a valve hold?

The standard pressure is between 40-80 pounds per square inch (psi). Any pressure that would go higher than 80 psi can cause damage to your household appliances. Generally, the ideal pressure is 65 psi to every valve.

What is normal water pressure?

The normal range of water pressure should be between 40 and 60 PSI. Homeowners prefer something right in the middle around 50 PSI. Once you measure your home's water pressure, you can now easily adjust it to a setting that is fit for your household uses.

Flow Rate

To find out how many sprinkler heads you can use for each zone you need to know the water pressure and flow rate. Use the flow meter to determine what is the current rate you have. A flow rate from a sprinkler nozzle depends upon the size and water pressure. Typical sprinkler flow rates may vary from 4 gallons per minute (gpm) from a 5/32-inch nozzle at 30 pounds pressures to over 11 gpm from a 7/32-inch nozzle at 70 pounds pressures.

What is the average flow rate?

The standard sprinkler flow rates, in general, are from 4 gallons per minute (gpm) from a 5/32-inch  nozzle at 30 pounds pressures to over 11 gpm from a 7/32-inch nozzle at 70 pounds pressures.

How to calculate flow rate?

Using your flow meter measure your current rate and use the equation below to know your gpm.

Equation: 5 (gallons)/number of seconds to fill, then multiply your answer by 60 to get gpm.

Once you know the water pressure and the total gpm from your faucet, then you can calculate for the friction loss. It will depend on the diameter and length of your hose and how many gpm is flowing through it.

The flow rate and pressure are directly related to one another. If the pressure is not well-controlled, irrigation efficiency will suffer and your system will not work.

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