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5 Signs That Your Irrigation System Isn’t Working Properly

Jack Moore
Jul 22, 2021 9:29:55 AM

Few things are more frustrating than when problems are happening right under your nose and you don’t realize it until it’s gotten really bad. But this is something that we often find occurs with irrigation system issues.

Problems like this often come on slowly. A small leak can make it seem as though the grass is green one day and yellowing the next.

We know this is incredibly annoying as you find yourself wishing you’d spotted a problem earlier. That’s why we’re talking about sprinkler system troubleshooting. We want to help ensure that you can spot signs that your irrigation system is not working properly.

How to Tell if Your Irrigation System isn’t Working Properly

While not all irrigation problems can be spotted—and frankly, some problems might seem like an irrigation system issue and turn out to be something else—these signs will at least give you a sense of whether something might be wrong with your system.Proper working irrigation

1. Water Pooling in the Yard

Water pooling in the lawn or the landscape is one of the most obvious signs of an irrigation system issue. If you have excess water that has become visible in your yard or in your landscape beds, then there’s probably a system leak.

Even if water isn’t physically pooling, you may begin to see that the lawn has become brown and squishy like a sponge.

2. You Notice Marks on a Fence or Structures (or Hardscaping)

If you’re noticing that you have marks on your fencing or other structures on the property, then you may have a sprinkler head pointed in the wrong direction. It’s a major frustration (and a waste of water) when a sprinkler head isn’t watering what it’s meant to! After all, your sidewalk doesn’t need watering!

Sometimes you have to look for more subtle signs. It may just be a small leak.

If you happen to notice that your driveway or sidewalks are getting just a little bit wet (or maybe even started to grow some moss), this is still an irrigation system issue that should be addressed. You want to make sure that all of your water is going where it’s supposed to go.Sprinkler head adjustment

3. Some Lawn Areas are Bright Green and Others are Light Green

If you look out the window and see that some areas are bright green like they’re supposed to be but others are light green or even tan, then those zones might not be getting the proper amount of water. We would call these “hot spots.”

They can come on slowly and give you the sense that one day everything is fine (and the next it’s not). But the sooner you recognize them, the more quickly you can get a leak repaired.

Of course, as we mentioned, sometimes problems can look like you require sprinkler system troubleshooting when in reality, another issue is at hand. Disease and pest problems can also cause damage that shows up in certain “spots” on the lawn (where the disease or pests are active). That’s why having a professional diagnosis is key to getting the correct problem fixed.

4. Your Water Bill Has Gone Up

Another red flag that you have an irrigation system issue might not be within the lawn or landscape but in your mailbox! If you have a sudden spike in your water bill, it could be an irrigation system leak. Of course, it could also potentially be a leak in an appliance or plumbing inside of the home, so it’s important that you quickly troubleshoot what’s going on. You want to resolve the issue so that you’re not sending money down the drain (literally!).

5. Your System is Watering When it Doesn’t Need to be

Another irrigation system issue that we want to bring up (even though it doesn’t necessarily mean something is wrong), is that your lawn and landscape needs will evolve over time. A brand-new lawn or landscape will need more water than mature ones. Trees are a particularly good example of this. They will require much less watering over time.

That’s why it’s so important that your irrigation output is updated as your property matures.

You should also know that controllers have evolved. Today’s smart control technology can do so much more for your property and also save you money by not wasting water. This includes the implementation of rain sensors which help to ensure your system isn’t watering your property during a storm.
irrigation technician adjusting a smart controller
Keep in mind that technology like this still has a shelf life. Rain sensors do need to be replaced over time. It’s possible that sprinkler system troubleshooting might include updating your system or replacing a part to get the most out of it.

Working with a Pro on Sprinkler System Troubleshooting

Hopefully these signs have given you some sense of what could be going on with your sprinkler system. But the good news is, you don’t have to figure it all out yourself. When you work with a professional, they can handle the troubleshooting and get the right solution underway.

This might include upgrading your system, making repairs, or maybe even installing a new one.

No matter what, you want to make sure that you’re getting problems resolved swiftly. Irrigation issues can be costly. Ideally, if you can be proactive and prevent issues in the first place, it can save you money (and headaches).

At Grassperson, we recommend at least bi-annual irrigation checks in the spring and in the fall. In the spring, we’re making sure everything looks good as we head into the hottest months (and drought-like conditions). We’re making tweaks where they’re needed and making sure any repairs (however minor they may be) are handled. In the fall, we’re making sure the system is set up for winter when the lawn and landscape needs will dramatically change again.

Some clients want more than that and we can accommodate those needs, too.

At the end of the day, it comes down to giving you the peace of mind that you’re seeking. You deserve to know that your system is functioning as it should and that you’re getting the best results.

Instead of worrying about potential irrigation problems that may be lurking, you can leave it up to a pro who knows exactly what your Northern Texas property needs. Get a Free Quote, then you can enjoy the best lawn and landscape on the block!

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