Adjusting Your Sprinkler System

There are several ways in which to adjust your sprinkler system so that it will operate according to your needs. A new sprinkler system may need to be adjusted several times before it is fully operational.

Initial Adjustments

When preparing a new sprinkler system, you may need to change the arc of nozzle sprayers. You may need to do this several times until you have the right combination of spray to reach all of your plants with the appropriate amount of watering.

You may also need to tinker with the electronic control panel of a new system. Adjust watering times and days until you find the right combination that not only meets any local watering restrictions, but also allows your plants and lawn to get enough water.

Seasonal Adjustments

As the weather turns colder—and maybe wetter—later in the year, you may not need to water as often or for as long as you do in the summer.

If you live in an area that gets extremely cold, turn off your sprinkler system entirely as the weather becomes cooler. Prepare to winterize your sprinkler system by draining the water out of the system and then blowing it dry with an air compressor. This will prevent your pipes from breaking due to water freezing.

Water Pressure

You may need to adjust the water pressure for various sprinklers, especially if you adjusted the nozzles soon after installation. By keeping the water pressure modulated, you can not only maintain how well your sprinklers work, but also conserve water usage and lower water costs over time.

Incorrect water pressure can actually damage water nozzles and even make your sprinkler heads inefficient and ineffective. Water pressure that is too high can result in breaking up the spray pattern and making the circle of the spray smaller. Low pressure can reduce the spray circle to a minuscule trickle.

Other Adjustments

Over the course of the year, it may be necessary to adjust nozzles and spray patterns for various sprinkler heads. Occasionally, a sprinkler head may be kicked or knocked askew so that its spray doesn't reach its intended target. This can be especially true if a sprinkler is located in a high traffic area where it regularly is kicked by children or hit by passing lawnmowers.


Making regular adjustments to your sprinkler system will keep it operating optimally and keep your yard looking lush and green during the height of the growing season. By making adjustments to nozzles, operating times and water pressure, your sprinkler system should function properly for many years.