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4 Ways to Spot a Leak in Your Sprinkler System and What to Do about It

A faulty sprinkler or a leak within an outdoor irrigation system can cause all sorts of problems, especially in situations where the leak manages to escape notice. Keeping an eye out for any signs of trouble will help to ensure that you are better able to spot a leak and address the underlying issue before further problems have a chance to develop. Getting on top of a sprinkler problem can be really important, especially when you are trying to prevent damage to your lawn.

4 Ways to Spot a Leak in Your Sprinkler System and What to Do about It

Visual Inspection of Sprinkler Heads

Taking a quick look at sprinkler heads and other exposed irrigation equipment can be a good habit to get into. From rusting and corroding pipes to obvious signs that the sprinklers themselves have become worn or damaged, there are numerous potential issues that even a layperson should be able to spot. Taking stock of the system from time to time or making it a point to inspect the sprinklers whenever you are mowing or performing other landscaping chores can be a smart move. Make time in your schedule to watch the sprinklers run for a little bit to make sure that there aren’t any obvious visible problems in their operation as well.

Look for Mud or Standing Water

While a small leak may not be noticeable when the system is in operation, even slow leaks will be able to release a large volume of water given enough time. The presence of mud or even standing water near a sprinkler or pipe is often a clear sign of a leak. Inspecting your lawn for wet patches can allow you to pinpoint any leaks within the system, especially during dry conditions or when the sprinklers haven’t seen use in a few days. Checking around the sprinklers while you mow your lawn can be a really good habit to get into, as this allows you to have regular inspections of your system while you are already doing other work.

Comparing Past Utility Bills

Leaks that may not be large enough to create mud or standing pools of water may still be large enough to show up on your utility bill. A sudden and unexplained increase in water usage may indicate a leak or other underlying mechanical problem with your irrigation system. Calling in the professionals in order to test for leaks or to perform sprinkler repairs can be a wise precaution. Make sure to have a good professional in mind when you are in need of repairs, as this kind of quick response can help prevent any permanent lawn damage.

Discoloration and Uneven Growth

Grassy areas that aren’t receiving enough moisture may begin to turn brown while any vegetation that may be receiving extra water through a leak will often take on a lush appearance as well as a darker green coloration. While there are plenty of other reasons for lawns to become discolored, uneven growth can also be a common sign of a leaky irrigation system.

Keeping an eye on both the overall condition of the lawn as well as the sprinklers and other equipment can make it much easier to spot signs of a leak or other mechanical problem. Calling in the professionals to test the system, perform an inspection, or to make repairs helps to minimize the scope of any problems that may develop.


Author Bio:  Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max.

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