How to Adjust a Pop-Up Sprinkler Head

sprinklers watering a green lawn
  • 2-4 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 0-60
What You'll Need
Small flat-head screwdriver
What You'll Need
Small flat-head screwdriver

A pop-up sprinkler head is one of the most commonly used sprinkler types for lawn irrigation. As the name implies, the head of the sprinkler rises or pops up out of the ground when water pressure is added. You can quickly adjust the angle or spray pattern of the sprinkler by following these steps.

Adjusting the Spray Pattern

Step 1 - Turn the Sprinkler On

First, turn the sprinkler on before you begin adjusting the head.

Step 2 - Turn the Adjustment Screw

Next, turn the adjustment screw by using a small flat-head screwdriver. Turning the screw counterclockwise will widen the spray pattern and increase the amount of water discharged from the head, while turning the adjustment screw clockwise will decrease the spray pattern and amount of water emitted.

Adjusting the Angle

Step 1 - Determine Sprinkler-Head Type

First, see what type of sprinkler head you have. Some can be adjusted to different angles. If this is the case, you can easily move the head. However, most require you to turn the entire body of the sprinkler to get the correct spray angle. This is also a good time to see if your sprinkler head needs any cleaning.

Step 2 - Dig Around the Sprinkler

Next, if your pop-up sprinkler is recessed in the ground, you need to use a shovel to dig around it. Then, turn the water on.

Step 3 - Turn the Sprinkler Head

Grab the pop-up sprinkler body and turn it until the water sprays in the desired direction or area. Use caution not to overturn the sprinkler, as you can break the riser pipe underneath.

If you notice with either of these adjustment methods that your sprinkler head is damaged, you can change it in a few steps.