5 Ways to Upgrade Your Irrigation System

Commercial irrigation systems are often touted as “insurance policies” for landscaping. They provide water to plants and turf when mother nature fails to. And what property doesn’t want green, lush landscaping – even in the brutal heat?

But, simply having an irrigation system on your commercial property doesn’t mean the landscape is getting proper care. Improperly maintained irrigation systems cause more harm than good – to the landscape and your budget. Leaks, inefficient heads, and poor automatic schedules can actually make an irrigation system less efficient and more costly than no system at all.

How to Save Water for Commercial Properties

According to the EPA, properties with a large amount of irrigated landscape spend as much as 30% of their water bill on irrigation. Choosing an irrigation professional is the first step toward reducing your water use and utility costs. Irrigation technicians are trained to know how to maximize water use without compromising plant and lawn health.

Water requirements change throughout the seasons.  The amount of time the irrigation system runs needs to be adjusted frequently in order to avoid over-watering. Irrigation pros know that adjusting watering times to address specific needs of the plants AND increasing or decreasing water application by the season is smart irrigation.

How long the system runs is important, but so is the time of day watering happens. Water in the heat of the day – most of that water is lost to evaporation. Water in the wee hours of the morning and that water has time to soak deep to the root zone and sustain plants until the next irrigation cycle.

Sprinkler head broken below ground level and leaking
Wasted water running into the street from a broken irrigation head

Another way to stop waste is repairing damage and upgrading components. Leaking pipes, sprinkler heads, and valves are the enemy of water management. Add runoff from misdirected heads and you could be letting thousands of dollars go down the drain – literally. A properly repaired and adjusted system will work efficiently and effectively for your property.

And finally, rain sensors and soil moisture sensors prevent unnecessary watering cycles. These can be added to any system – anytime. Watering when the soil is saturated results in runoff and unnecessary water costs. And, well, running irrigation during a rain storm – that’s a no-brainer. These small additions can turn the efficiency up a notch.

Our Top 5 Recommended Irrigation System Changes or Upgrades:

If your property has an outdoor sprinkler system, you’ve already invested in one of the most beneficial landscaping features. Water conservation does NOT equal turning the system off for good. There are a few simple things to do that can make a significant dent in the amount of water used each month.

  1. Install a Watersense Controller to automate watering schedules
  2. Add a separate water meter to monitor irrigation water consumption
  3. Convert spray heads to drip irrigation to target water to the root zone where it is needed most
  4. Where spray heads are needed, use pressure regulating heads to reduce misting and overspray
  5. Have your system checked monthly for leaks and adjustments and correct issues as needed

How Much Water Can You Save?


Rainbird conducted tests on pressure-regulated heads and showed that properties can save as much as 50,000 gallons of water per year by changing out old sprinkler heads for PRS heads.

Have an irrigation system already or are thinking about adding one to your property? Choose a professional installer like Complete Landscaping.  We make sure your system is outfitted with the most advanced components to minimize water use.  Your irrigation system will keep your commercial landscaping lush – even in the hottest months of the year.

Garden Irrigation system spray watering lawn

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