Top 7 Signs Your Sprinkler System Is Set Up Wrong

Sprinkler System Set Up Picture


Ever wonder if your sprinkler system is installed and set up to run correctly? Is it wasting water? Is it set for the ideal watering times? Is it watering too often, not often enough, or not hitting the right areas? The irrigation team at Heritage Lawns & Irrigation have some simple sprinkler checks you can do to see where your system needs help.


1. If Zones Are All Set for the Same Amount of Time

All zones are not created equal. Sun and shade, high and low spots, types of grass and other factors will affect the specific watering requirements. If all of your zones are set for the same amount of time, it’s most likely set up incorrectly.

2. If Sidewalks and Driveways Get More Than the Edges Wet

You pay for the water you use to irrigate your lawn. If you’re watering the sidewalk and driveway too, you’re paying for water that’s running off into the sewer system and doing your lawn and landscape no good whatsoever. Sprinkler heads may be able to be adjusted to correct this problem.

3. If You’re Watering in the Middle of the Day

The middle of the day is the worst time to water your lawn for two reasons. One – evaporation lessens the amount of water that is actually absorbed into the ground on a hot day. Two – If the weather becomes overcast, excess water may not burn off, sitting on the plants and creating the moist conditions needed for diseases to take hold. Early morning is the best time to water.

4. If You Get a Lot of Runoff

Runoff can be due to several issues. One – you are watering for too long and all at once not giving the water time to soak into the soil. Longer, deeper waterings encourage deeper root growth and will prevent browning and burning during the hottest weeks of summer. Learn more about Sprinkler System Dos and Don’ts here.

5. If Bed Zones and Turf Zones Run on the Same Schedule

Landscape plants and grass require different amounts of water. Lawns here in the Kansas City area require 1 to 1 1/2 inches of water per week. Shrubs and trees have a deeper, more extensive root system and therefore different water requirements. It’s best to have them on a different valve or time zone in your irrigation system. Sprinklers can work, but drip irrigation is a much more efficient and less costly way to care for your landscape plants. A good rule of thumb is 1-2 gallons of water for smaller accent plants like perennial and annual flowers and small shrubs, 3-5 gallons for larger shrubs, and 10 gallons of water for larger trees each time you water.

6. If You Water the Lawn Every Day

Watering every day is unhealthy for your lawn because it promotes shallow root growth. Shallow roots will suffer from burnout in the heat of the summer. Longer, deeper watering will force the roots to grow deeper and give you a more resilient lawn.

7. If Your Sprinklers Run When It Rains

Watering when it’s raining is a colossal waste of water. Rain sensors installed on your sprinkler system will prevent this from happening.Get more tips here A Beginner’s Guide to Setting Up Your Sprinkler System Schedule.


If your sprinkler system is showing any of these signs, give us a call. One of our irrigation specialists will come show you how to set it correctly so you’re getting the most out of your watering and your lawn and landscape will look its best.


Give us a call at (913) 451-4664. Get more tips here A Beginner’s Guide to Setting Up Your Sprinkler System Schedule.


If you’d like to see the coolest sprinkler system ever invented, click on the link below for a free, in-home, no-obligation, Smart Sprinkler Management System demo:

Smart Sprinkler Management System Free Demo