If the sprinkler line breaks, you have a couple of options for fixing it. The method used to fix a broken underground sprinkler line depends on the location of the leak or split in the line. For example, clean breaks that occur before valves typically require a hard bridge repair. However, if it’s further along the line, you have many different types of repair jobs available for the task.
How Do You Fix a Broken Underground Sprinkler Line?
Locate the Damaged Pipe
Finding the leak in the broken sprinkler pipe is the first and usually the most challenging part of repairing the damaged section. Some leaks are easier to source than others.
You might notice a pressure loss in one watering zone or a geyser popping through your lawn. If there’s a pressure loss between heads, examine the line in that area and look for signs of moist soil.
PVC Saddles & Clamps
The PVC saddle is the most common repair kit for connecting standard plumbing pipes. The components in the repair kit hug the line, not the fittings. If the fitting is leaking, you’ll need a hard bridge repair. Some repair kits use PVC saddles, while others use metal clamps and a rubber gasket to resolve the issue.
Most backyards have trees. While they give us glorious shade in the summer heat, their roots can also interfere with sprinkler lines. A tree root can easily puncture a pipe, leading to a broken pipe and a leak.
Since most roots create an upward force on the pipe, the break might be challenging to repair using a hard bridge. Therefore, a flexible coupling is ideal in this instance. This is the best way to resolve the issue without damaging the tree.
Also known as a telescopic coupling, the expanding coupling is ideal for tasks involving the replacement of a leaking fitting in a tight spot. For instance, if the fitting is inside a valve box, you might use this method. The fitting has a stationary end you attach to a section of pipe. The movable shaft on the fitting slips into another pipework fitting.
Sometimes, a repair might involve a hard bridge combined with an expandable coupling, but this strategy adds to the repair bill.
Many irrigation repair specialists use no-glue pipes and fittings for jobs wherever possible. A PVC compression coupling offers the ideal solution for this case. Also known as a dresser coupling, the compression coupling uses gaskets as a mechanical seal.
When irrigation technicians tighten the nuts on the fitting, they force the rubber O-rings into the empty space between the fitting and the pipe’s outer surface. If there’s a leak, another half-turn will stop the problem.
PVC Pipe Bridge
The PVC hard bridge is a common fix for leaking sprinkler lines. This method involves building a bridge using hard PVC pipe and fittings. For instance, in scenarios where the sprinkler line passes over growing roots or if you locate a leak in a small area, that isn’t suitable for the other methods.
The amount and type of fittings required depend on the merits of the situation. However, most hard PVC pipe bridges utilize a series of 90-degree fittings and a section of PVC pipe.
Learn more about our Omaha sprinkler repair services.
Additional Information: Common Sprinkler System Repairs
Pioneer Underground Lawn Sprinklers | Omaha’s Best Commercial & Residential Sprinkler Systems
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