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Brand Guide: The Sprinkler Heads You Need To Use 

American Irrigation Repair is your trusted local sprinkler repair company serving customers in Round Rock, Austin, Round Rock, and the surrounding areas.

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Brand Guide: The Sprinkler Heads You Need To Use 

Maintaining a lush and healthy garden landscape requires you to have an efficient irrigation system that delivers just the right amount of water to your turf and plants without waste. The efficiency of the irrigation system depends on several factors, including the type of sprinkler heads you have. 

Is it time to replace yours? Are you thinking of installing new lines or coverage areas? It can feel overwhelming to know where to start with the sheer number of options on the market.

Below, we list a few options from leading brands you can choose from. 

Hunter PGP Rotors

The PGP is legendary.  This is the head that started the “rotor revolution” back in 1981.  Ed Hunter founded Hunter Industries on the back of the PGP, an enclosed gear drive rotor. This head was very different back during a time when the impact sprinkler was the standard. Impact sprinklers have that notorious sound ch-ch-ch-ch, you know the sound! The PGP revolutionized the industry then by making the components enclosed and protected from the elements. While impact sprinklers were wonderful to listen to, they were terrible for collecting debris and getting hung up sticking in one spot.  

PgPs are excellent heads to use in large open areas where there is a large area to cover.  Pgp’s come with a variation of nozzles that can be changed out allowing different flow rates.  This allows you to change the spray pattern and the distance of the spray. You can say goodbye to dragging your garden hose around for hours every Saturday morning! 

Rain Bird 5000 Series Rotors

These units make an excellent choice if your lawn has large open areas without obstruction. The rotors come with nozzles that can be changed out allowing different flow rates. This allows you to change the spray pattern and the distance of the spray.

Rain Bird 1800 Series Spray Heads

Rainbird built the first legendary spray head with the 1800 series. These sprays have been industry legends for their longevity and durability. It is not uncommon for us to find the 1800s over 20 years old in the field working. 1800’s became the gold standard in spray heads because of a reliable flush and seal riser stem seal that allows the head to flush debris on startup, yet not leak at full pressurization.  

The components used in the heads also have a longer-than-normal service life with excellent long-term durability. The 1800’s started out primarily for smaller areas from 5 to 15’ however the addition of newer style stream rotors allows these heads to reach out to 30-35’ radiuses as well. Rainbird spray heads are available with pressure compensating to keep misting down as well as with check valves to reduce low head drainage. 2”, 4”, 6”, and 12” pop-up height varieties are available to clear different turf or plant material heights. Regardless of the size of the area you need to water the Rain Bird 1800 Series will deliver that efficient coverage with long-lasting reliability you’re aiming for.  

Hunter MP Rotators

These make an excellent alternative to the Rain Bird 5000 series or Hunter Pgp gear drive rotors if you want sprinkler heads that can cover large areas effortlessly. Hunter Industries acquired the MP Rotator from Walla Walla Sprinkler Company and Nelson Irrigation.  Nelson knew they needed to either expand to meet the demand for the MP rotator or sell the line to someone who could manage the volume. They hit a home run with this sprinkler. The MP became popular very fast due to the fact that it matches the precipitation rates even after arc adjustment or radius adjustment. MP rotators characteristic is they have the “fingers” that spray at differing lengths, and they look like fingers gently watering the landscape. 

They are a bit mesmerizing to sit and watch. MP rotators are a terrific tool to keep precipitation rates low to allow time for the water to soak in. Water windows can be a challenge so be sure you won’t overrun your restriction window when setting up your system with an MP rotator. Installation of MP’s is fairly straightforward as they can be installed on any number of pop-up style heads including the Rain-Bird 1800 series or the Hunter pro-spray series.   

Hunter Pro-Spray Rotary Nozzles

Some folks refer to Hunter Pro-Spray’s combined with MP or Rain-Bird rotary nozzles, Pro-Spray Rotary Nozzles. We like this setup especially when the rotary nozzles are combined with a 6” check valve and/or pressure-regulated valve or head. This type of head is very efficient with a slow even precipitation rate and will help with water conservation efforts.  

Hunter pressure-regulated spray heads

Pressure regulation is delivered by an in-head regulator that can be installed at the factory or an aftermarket regulator that can be installed on the job site.

Pressure-regulated spray heads help deliver a consistent stream of water even across uneven landscapes by ensuring consistent pressure across all your heads. This helps alleviate inefficiencies from pressure fluctuation due to piping, control valves, or pumps in the system. You don’t have to worry about overwatering in high-pressure or underwatering in low-pressure areas with pressure-regulated heads.  

They do a good job keeping the nozzles within designed pressure ranges, supporting nozzles with multiple throw distances and patterns, giving you more control over watering your lawn.

Irritrol Heavy Duty

Although we don’t install or recommend them now, in times past many professional irrigation installers swore by sprinkler heads from Irritrol. Irritrol was one of the most popular brands of irrigation equipment throughout the 90s, especially in the Austin area. Their Rain-Dial controllers, 205 series control valves, and dome-top spray heads were used in thousands of systems. If you have irritrol equipment in your system aging out, we can review and make recommendations on the best gear to update the system for efficiency and consistent watering.   

Two variants of Irritrol’s gear-driven rotators are the 430R and 550R. The rotors are known to be heavy-duty rotors and make an excellent option for large landscapes. 

Irritrol was purchased by and became a division of Toro a few years back.  

Netafim Drip Irrigation Solutions

Netafim began supplying drip products in the desserts of Israel.  They were forced to pioneer the strategy of doing more with less water through drip irrigation. Are you looking for drip irrigation solutions?  The Netafim pressure-compensating dripper line is one of the brand’s most popular offerings we highly recommend.

With this pressure-compensating dripline, you can expect consistent water delivery to individual plants. This minimizes waste and maximizes efficiency. You can also combine a good bit of area to water with drip lines thus maximizing your water windows. This helps with water restrictions in the Georgetown, Round Rock, and Austin areas.  

Rachio Controlled Systems

Rachio is one of the newest entrants in the industry. They don’t have lawn sprinklers, but their smart sprinkler controller system has been getting a lot of attention lately.  We’ve heard from many folks who insist on Rachio controllers. Although the hardware could use some improvements in our opinion, Rachio does a fabulous job with their software on the controllers.  

From a total package standpoint of hardware, software, local control, and support, we prefer the Rain-Bird ESP ME3 controller. When combined with the LNK wifi module both of the controllers ensure better flexibility with adjusting watering schedules. Using the built-in features to increase or decrease watering based on the weather can help reduce water wastage significantly over extended periods.

Get Expert Guidance on Your Sprinkler System From American Irrigation Repair

Are you thinking about installing new sprinkler heads across your lawn and landscape but can’t seem to settle on the right options? We can help! We have extensive experience in helping property owners design custom, high-efficiency irrigation systems.

Call American Irrigation Repair in Georgetown, TX, today at (512) 943-6080 to schedule a consultation.

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About The Author

Justin Wilson

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