New Requirements Regarding Pressure-Regulating Spray Heads | Is your State Affected?

Here at Evergreen Design Group, we have long been solid proponents of specifying and recommending the use of pressure-regulating spray heads in landscapes.

What are pressure-regulating spray heads?

Many landscape irrigation systems throughout the U.S. have excessive pressure for the type of irrigation components that have been installed.  This excess pressure can often lead to water loss and uneven watering areas.  Pressure-regulating spray heads are designed to regulate that pressure to help ensure optimal performance.

Pressure regulating spray heads are not only valuable in conserving water usage, but also in improving landscape sprinkler performance.

How do pressure-regulating spray heads work?

Pressure-regulating spray heads include built-in regulators that maintain a more constant pressure of the water exiting the sprinkler head.  This constant, regulated pressure helps the nozzles distribute the water more evenly and reduces water waste caused by excessive pressure.

A few signs of too much pressure in an existing landscape irrigation system

  • A fine, misty fog coming from the sprinkler heads when they are in operation
  • A high decibel hissing sound coming from the sprinkler heads when they are in operation
  • Uneven, dry spots throughout the landscape

How does excess water pressure waste my water, thus forcing me to pay higher water bills?

Excess pressure in landscape irrigation systems lead to misting, evaporation, wind drift, and poor uniformity, which usually leads to someone increasing the run time to battle the dry areas, wasting even more water.

How can I fix excess water pressure in my existing landscape irrigation system?

Your first approach should be to switch out the current sprinkler heads with pressure-regulating spray heads.  The major irrigation manufacturers carry these.  Rain Bird has the 1800-PRS series, Hunter has the PRO-SPRAY PRS, and most of the others have their own lines as well.

What is the increased cost from regular spray heads to pressure-regulating spray heads?

For a 6” spray head (which is what we specify for smaller turf areas) you can expect to pay around $7 – $9 more per head for a new install.

For a retrofit, the cost will most likely increase due to the additional labor involved.

Keep in mind that this is a one-time cost.  The residual dollar savings will be recognized throughout the life of the system itself.

Which states have the upcoming mandated requirement to utilize pressure-regulated spray heads?

California, Colorado, Hawaii, Vermont, and Washington Will Soon Require Pressure Regulation in Spray Sprinkler Bodies.

Vermont:  July 1, 2020
California:  October 1, 2020
Colorado:  January 1, 2021
Hawaii:  January 1, 2021
Washington:  January 1, 2021

To learn why A/E/C firms choose Evergreen Design Group to prepare their sustainable landscape and irrigation designs, contact us today.