How to locate irrigation solenoid valves?


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Old 01-02-23, 04:58 PM
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How to locate irrigation solenoid valves?

A friend has a small backyard construction project. The crew accidentally dug up wires, solenoid valves and irrigation pipes. His sprinkler setup has eight solenoids (not in boxes) spread over the yard, a nightmare for any repairs. Is there a way to locate the solenoids? Can the wires be energized (24V AC) and somehow located with a magical wand? Thank you.
 

Last edited by paker; 01-02-23 at 05:23 PM.
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Old 01-02-23, 06:11 PM
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Well..... not a magic wand but an underground wire tracer.
The kit sounds out a tone on the sprinkler wires and a receiver/wand is used to follow the tone.

There are many for sale. Most electricians have them and contacting one may be a better idea.
Just for example.... underground wire locator
 
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Old 01-03-23, 12:33 AM
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Is this the one to trace wires behind the wall? I was going to buy one anyhow. I didn't know it also works on underground wires. I will buy one for him and me.

By the way, is there a reason why solenoids are spread over the lawn? I just don't see any advantage over keeping all solenoids and controller in the same area.
 
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Old 01-03-23, 03:59 AM
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Paker, whoever did the installation made the determination plastic pipe was more expensive than copper wire in my opinion, hence the distribution of the zone valves. As you can see, it took only one zone valve failure to show the installation decision was penny wise then and pound foolish today. In most installs the controller is inside to protect the electronics from rain and cold. Personally, I would go with one box for zone valves and run the wires from controller to the box in buried PVC pipe.
 
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Old 01-04-23, 07:24 PM
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Thank you for confirming the conventional approach, locating the controller, zone valves and water feeder in proximity. We may do it eventually.
 
 

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