Best Sprinkler Systems to Meet Home and Commercial Watering Needs

Review & Comparison, Last Update December 2, 2018
The summer is coming and it means that if you haven’t decided on how you will water your yard yet, it’s time to make up your mind. Pick one of the best sprinkler systems available on the market and provide efficient watering for your garden or lawn. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2018
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Type
Coverage Area
Recommended Water Pressure
Spray Distance
Minimum Water Flow
Sprinkler Coverage Patterns
What's in the box
Warranty
 
PROS

This automatic system has a built-in timer that can be adjusted to satisfy various watering needs. You can program the device to work at specific times of the day or days of a week. This very feature rids you of the necessity to control the watering process manually.

CONS

It will take you some time to figure out how to put the system together.

OUR VERDICT

The Rain Bird watering system is a perfect choice for those who need to take care of large areas and don't have time to control the process manually. This smart computerized model not only does the watering job for you but also minimizes water expenses thanks to the rain curtain nozzle technology used.

detailed parameters
Type

Pop-up rotary

Coverage Area

Up to 3000 sq. ft.

Recommended Water Pressure

40 - 75 psi

Spray Distance

Maximum 32 ft

Minimum Water Flow

6 gallons per minute

Sprinkler Coverage Patterns

40° to 360°

What's in the box

6 x sprinklers, Automatic watering timer, 125’ coil of distribution tubing, 6 x threaded male tee fittings, 2 x ½” barbed tee fittings, ½” barbed coupling, 2 x ½” barbed elbows, Barbed fitting insertion tool, Faucet connection kit, Drain valve components, 6 x stakes and cable ties, Roll of PTFE tape, Rotor adjustment tool/screwdriver, ½” male-female elbow fitting, Adapter, ½” male pipe thread to ½” tubing, 12 x additional sprinkler nozzles

Warranty

30 days

PROS

Being able to cover the area of up to 5000 sq ft, the Quick-Snap system needs only 30 psi water pressure to start working. The ability to adjust settings when the device is on/off adds to its usability greatly. 

CONS

Some plastic elements might seem flimsy. 

OUR VERDICT

The Quick-Snap system can suit both home and commercial applications thanks to its impressive coverage area. When not in use, the pop-up sprinkler heads can be neatly tucked away in order to provide effortless lawn moving.

detailed parameters
Type

Pop-up rotary

Coverage Area

Up to 5000 sq. ft.

Recommended Water Pressure

At least 30 psi

Spray Distance

17 to 40 ft

Minimum Water Flow

2.5 gallons per minute

Sprinkler Coverage Patterns

40° to 360°

What's in the box

5 x sprinklers, 5 x hose connectors, 3 x hose line "Y", 5 x bright orange caps

Warranty

30 days

PROS

The system is equipped with a filter that ensures pure watering without sand and dust. Removing the filter for cleaning is the easiest thing ever. Clean it from time to time to prolong the service life of the system. 

CONS

The coverage area might be less than you expect.

OUR VERDICT

The Gardena device will become your irreplaceable helper in taking care of small and medium-sized yard/garden/lawn areas. Three adjustable settings, paired with a sturdy yet lightweight base, make this unit both effective and convenient to use.

detailed parameters
Type

Oscillating

Coverage Area

Up to 2325 sq. ft.

Recommended Water Pressure

At least 40 psi

Spray Distance

10 to 59 ft

Minimum Water Flow

Not specified

Sprinkler Coverage Patterns

Up to 90°

What's in the box

Mechanical timer, Fine-mesh filter, Mounting elements

Warranty

30 days

PROS

It will take you less than 15 minutes to install the Nelson system. It's possible to buy additional sprinkler heads or even one more system to expand its functionality and coverage area. 

CONS

The quality of the hose leaves something to be desired. 

OUR VERDICT

If you are in need of a sprinkler system that is easy to use and set up, the Nelson 50180 may become a sensible purchase. One other argument that might tell you in favor of this model is its incredibly wallet-friendly price. 

detailed parameters
Type

Riser pipes

Coverage Area

Up to 113 sq. ft.

Recommended Water Pressure

At least 40 psi

Spray Distance

Maximum 12 ft

Minimum Water Flow

Not specified

Sprinkler Coverage Patterns

180° to 360°

What's in the box

50 feet of tubing, 5 x spray nozzles, 10 x risers, 5 x half-circle nozzle adaptors, 5 x tubing hold-down stakes, 8 x goof plugs

Warranty

30 days

PROS

Every sprinkler head has an individual flow control that allows you to choose the necessary watering settings for each part of your garden. The hose is made of flexible PVH, which means it's less susceptible to damage and leakages. 

CONS

Water pressure level should be rather high for proper operation. 

OUR VERDICT

Costing three or even four times less than the sprinklers from famous brands, this simple system can impress you with its performance. Although it doesn't cover a large area, it can be extended by additional hoses and sprinkler heads and adjusted to water your garden just like you want it.

detailed parameters
Type

Riser pipes

Coverage Area

Up to 400 sq. ft.

Recommended Water Pressure

50 - 65 psi

Spray Distance

~ 10 ft

Minimum Water Flow

Not specified

Sprinkler Coverage Patterns

5° to 360°

What's in the box

50 feet of hose, 3 x rotor sprinklers, 3 x end caps, 1 x hose coupler, 1 x Y-connector

Warranty

30 days

Rain Bird 32ETI

Innovative Approach to Watering

If you’re looking for a watering device to take care of a fairly large lawn (from 1000 to 3000 square meters) with minimum efforts, the Rain Bird sprinkler system might pique your interest. It has many features and functions to simplify its use, and boasts automatic operation. The system is equipped with a mini computer that has an easy-to-read, large screen, and features a few dials and control buttons which allow for easy control of the watering process. You can program this sprinkler system to water your lawn at specific days of a week, set the start time of watering, and select the watering duration. It’s also possible to choose AUTO mode and let the sprinkler do the job for you. Finally, you can control the watering process manually with the "WATER NOW" and "CANCEL" buttons.

Self-draining properties of the Rain Bird sprinkler system are the feature that should appeal to any house/mansion owner. Stopping the water supply outdoors when the cold season begins is of the utmost importance and if not done timely may cause a serious breakage to the whole water system. With that in mind, the manufacturer fitted this sprinkler with a self-draining function which enables it to remove all excess water at one single touch.

Since this Rain Bird sprinkler system is aimed at watering large areas, it is rather bulky and consists of a great number of parts. That’s why it might be a bit challenging to install the system on your own. Yet, the manufacturer has described the process of installation in details in the manual to make it as simple as possible. And if you ask your relative, friend, or neighbor to help you, you’ll manage the system assembly faster than you expect.

Review of Rain Bird 32ETI Easy to Install In-Ground Automatic Sprinkler System

Take Care of Your Lawn Properly

Watering isn’t the only thing you'll need to do in order to keep your lawn beautiful and healthy-looking. In addition to providing proper irrigation, you'll need to observe these simple rules:

  • Mow the lawn. Lawn specialists say that the higher the lawn is, the healthier it is. The ideal grass height is 2”-3.5” inches.
  • Keep in mind that it’s better to mow the lawn when it’s cool and dry. Doing this during the hottest part of the day or when the grass is wet may worsen its state as the grass is more vulnerable at this time.
  • Fertilize your lawn regularly to provide it with needed nutrients for better growth. Also, make sure to saturate it with oxygen using a special aerator. Give preference to modern appliances to reduce the effort needed to complete these tasks.
Rain Bird 32ETI Easy to Install In-Ground Automatic Sprinkler System in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Quick-Snap QSK-74

Impressive Performance

If you're looking for a sprinkling system that will be able to water large areas while not attracting too much attention, the Quick-Snap GSK-74 is a good choice. It has an impressive coverage area of 5000 square meters and features a discreet pop-up design. Speaking of its performance, this sprinkler can provide you with 17 to 40 feet working distance and 40° to 360° coverage patterns which should be more than enough to meet your watering needs. Adjusting the settings is easy and can be done at any point no matter whether the sprinker is on or off. 

As we've mentioned earlier, the Quick-Snap GSK-74 belongs to the pop-up type. The discerning peculiarity of these systems is that their sprinkling parts are placed very close to the ground which makes them unnoticeable when not in use. However, once you open a faucet, the heads pop up in order to do the job. One more advantage is that the sprinkler starts to work at a pressure as little as 30 psi so you don't need to worry if the water pressure in your region isn't very high. 

Lastly, we'd like to say a few words about the package. Surprisingly enough, while the Quick-Snap GSK-74  has quite a wide coverage area, there aren't many accessories included in the box. In fact, you get only 5 sprinklers, 5 hose connectors, 3 "Y" hose lines, and 5 bright orange caps, which is the standard kit for most sprinkler systems. That being said, the kit this minimalistic also means you won't need to spend a lot of time on preparing your new watering system to work. So you choose what you need more. 

Review of Quick-Snap QSK-74 In-Ground 5-Inch Pop-Up Adjustable Sprinkler

Don’t Miss the Time to Replace Your Irrigation System

Every device or appliance we buy has its own service life and sprinkler irrigation systems aren't an exception. However, that doesn't mean that when the date specified in the warranty expires the device will stop to work immediately. Many of the devices seem to work just fine for many more years after that. What you should pay attention instead are the first signs that will tell you when the maintenance or replacement has to be done. With regards to the Quick-Snap sprinkler systems, here are a few of them:

  • Leakage. If your system starts to leak, what you should do first is to check its heads and valves since these are what usually causes this problem. This way, replacing them alone can often solve the problem. In case you've replaced the heads and the valves but the problem is still there, this might indicate that the time for a full replacement has come.
  • Water bills. They can also help you understand that something is going wrong with your system. If you notice the increase in your bills, this only shows to prove that you have the leakage problem.
  • Water pressure. If the water pressure becomes weaker with every use, most likely than not the hose to which the system is connected is damaged and requires replacement.
Quick-Snap QSK-74 In-Ground 5-Inch Pop-Up Adjustable Sprinkler in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Gardena 6984BZMX

Functionality and Simplicity in One Device

Are you looking for an inexpensive yet good home sprinkler system suitable for small and medium-sized areas? If you are, then this model from Gardena is worth your attention. To save you time on studying all specifications, we've decided to highlight the key features that set this sprinkler system apart from other models in its price range. Here are a few of them:

  • Perhaps, it is one of the most simple-to-use and install system among those presented on the market. It consists of a mechanical timer, mesh filter, and mounting elements and weighs only 1 pound so moving it from one place to another, if need be, is very easy.
  • The Gardena system is a mechanical device with three adjustable settings – width of the spray pattern, range, and water flow – that help you make the watering process of small and middle-sized areas (up to 2325 square meters) both efficient and convenient. This irrigation system also has a built-in timer that can be set from 1 to 120 minutes depending on how much watering your yard/garden needs. Moreover, it saves you the trouble of constantly checking how the watering process is going on.
  • If you like the type and operating principle of this system but you have a larger area that needs irrigation, it’s possible to buy an additional Gardena system and a threaded tap connector to enlarge the coverage area.
  • While providing great performance and efficiency, this sprinkler won't cost you a fortune. 
Review of Gardena 6984BZMX ZoomMaxx Sprinkler on Sled Base with Water Timer

Possible Problems and Solutions

Check the list of common problems and troubleshooting tips you may need when using a Gardena irrigation system:

  • If you’ve noticed that the performance of your Gardena irrigation system worsened, check its filter first. It's the core of the system and is used to capture all dust, sand, and debris in order to produce clean water flow. For this very reason, when the filter gets clogged, the water flow becomes less powerful than it originally was. If that's exactly what you experience, cleaning or replacing a filter will solve the problem. Along with the filter, we'd also advise you to check out the hose to make sure it's not damaged. In case you notice that it drips, replace it, too.
  • The Gardena device isn’t an in-ground sprinkler system and taking into account its lightweight, some users question its sturdiness. However, you shouldn't worry about that. The manufacturer has taken care of it and equipped the system with a weighted sled base to ensure its proper position on the ground. That said, if you still worry that it might tip over when working at high water pressure, you can further reinforce it using additional earth staples.
Gardena 6984BZMX ZoomMaxx Sprinkler on Sled Base with Water Timer in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Nelson 50180

Best Sprinkler System for Flower Beds

Home sprinkler system from Nelson will come to your liking if you want a device to keep small areas watered without the need to check the irrigation process constantly. Speaking of the functionality of this device, the first thing that needs to be taken into account is its type. The Nelson 50180 belongs to the type of riser pipes and it means it’s aimed at watering small areas like flower beds or separate parts of your garden. Just like the majority of the devices of this type, this system has some adjustable settings to meet your very needs. Thus, it can work at the maximum spray distance of 12 feet, while its coverage patterns can be adjusted within 180° - 360° range. One more thing that will come to your liking is that the Nelson model doesn’t need high water pressure for proper operation – 40 psi is enough to ensure effective irrigation.

The beauty of riser pipes is that they are the easiest sprinkler systems to set up. The Nelson device consists of 50-foot tubing, 5 spray nozzles, 10 risers, 5 half-circle nozzle adaptors, 5 tubing hold-down stakes, and 8 goof plugs. The manufacturer claims that it will take you 15 minutes or even less to install the system and start watering your flowers and other plants.

If the description of the Nelson irrigation system meets the expectations of the ideal system to use for your home needs, don’t hesitate to choose it. More so, its price is more than wallet-friendly.

Review of Nelson 50180 Simple Soaker Flower Watering Sprinkler

Reasons to Buy a Sprinkler System

If you’ve already decided to buy a home or commercial sprinkler system, you probably know why you need it. The most common reason is that you want to have a tool that will allow you to take care of your garden or lawn without putting too much of an effort into this process. Some other reasons why you may want to look towards acquiring a sprinkler system include the following:

  • Using such a system, you can save a lot of your time despite having to assemble it first. Luckily, most watering devices are rather simple to install and do not require any special knowledge. Even those bulky units comprising multiple parts should be easy to put together if you follow instructions from a user manual.
  • A sprinkler system can be used as a fertilizer. You can not only water the plants but also add solvable chemicals to enrich the soil with nutrients.
  • When your lawn, paths in your garden, your favourite trees and flowers that grow in your yard not only look beautiful but also are healthy, you definitely get aesthetic pleasure and satisfaction. Your garden becomes your pride and you can invite friends to chill out in your backyard.
Nelson 50180 Simple Soaker Flower Watering Sprinkler in the use

 

Gardener's Supply Company Snip-n-Spray

Perfect Choice for Watering Small Areas

Those seeking the combination of functionality, easy installation, and affordable price in a watering device to take care of small landscape areas in their garden will hardly find a better model than this system from Gardener’s Supply Company. For less than $40, you’ll get a good device to keep up to 400 square feet watered whenever you need. The system is of the riser pipes type and will better suit watering flower or vegetable beds but you can use it for irrigating other areas, too. What we like about the systems of this type is that they usually have many adjustable features. For example, this model boasts sprinkler coverage patterns that vary from 5° to 360° - quite an impressive range that can satisfy any watering needs.

We’d also like to draw your attention to the package of the Gardener’s Supply Company system. In the box are included a 50-foot hose, 3 rotor sprinklers, 3 end caps, a hose coupler, and a Y-connector. The hose is what we like best. It's made of PVC, a flexible material that doesn't tend to bend and can last for many years without leaking.

One more advantage of riser pipes systems (and the Snip-and-Spray model isn’t an exception) is their hassle-free extension properties. If you understand that 50 feet of hose isn’t enough to water the whole area you need, you can buy two or three systems and connect them. You can also buy sprinkler heads additionally if you want better moisturizing throughout the 50-foot hose. The only thing to keep in mind is that it’s recommended to buy spare parts from the same manufacturer to ensure proper operation of the device.

Review of Gardener's Supply Company Snip-n-Spray Garden and Landscape Sprinkler System

What Else to Buy

In addition to sprinkler systems that water land areas of different sizes and in various ways, you may also want to buy some other devices designed to facilitate garden/lawn care. One of them is a fertilizer spreader that should be found in the arsenal of any lawn owner. These simple devices are used not only to enrich the soil with nutrients to promote the lawn growth but also in order to reduce the possibility of weeds appearance.

Pruning shears and tree pruners are another garden tool that should be at hand of any owner of the lawn. Using tree pruners, it's much easier to get rid of old branches and shape trees and bushes than with any other tool.

Leaf blowers come in handy when the fall comes and it's time to clean the yard from dry leaves and twigs. Leaf blowers come in different types and may have various functions and usability features so any owner should be able to find the one that will fit his yard care needs. Moreover, many of leaf blowers pack in the functions of a leaf vacuum and a mulcher, saving you the need to buy them additionally.

Gardener's Supply Company Snip-n-Spray Garden and Landscape Sprinkler System in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

What Is a Sprinkler System?

A sprinkler system, also known as an irrigation system, is a device that usually consists of sprinkler heads connected to hoses or water pipes to provide even watering of your garden, vegetable garden, lawn, or any other area you need to water during hot and dry seasons. In comparison with manual ways of watering lawns like pots or hoses, sprinklers don’t require so much time and efforts. You’ll only need to spend some time on assembling the system before the first use. Once you’re ready with assembly, all you need to water your yard or garden is open a faucet to let the water run through the system. Nowadays, you can find a variety of different types of sprinkler systems on the market that differ in size and design, which makes it easier to pick a suitable model to fit various sprinkling needs. Moreover, the market offers many smart solutions, so if you seek out the ability to control your sprinkler system via your phone, these will make the lawn care a pleasant process for you. 

A weather station is a smart appliance that will let you know how much watering your garden or lawn needs and whether there is a need to water your yard at all. With this device at hand, you’ll be able to water plants just when they need it and eliminate water expenses.

What Features to Compare

In order to choose a sprinkler that will be able to satisfy all of your needs, the first thing you should consider is what type you need. According to different sources, sprinklers may fall into 4, 6 and more types. In this guide, we'd like to provide you with the most widespread classification.

  • Pop-up rotary sprinklers are usually used to irrigate lawns or sporting fields. As you might infer from the very name, sprinkler heads of these devices pop up from the ground when you turn the water on and are almost invisible when not in use. The advantage of this type of sprinklers is that they have a really large coverage area that can reach up to several thousand square feet.
  • Oscillating sprinklers have an oscillating head that produces back-and-forth movements. Thanks to this technology, such devices are aimed at watering rectangular areas. The most sophisticated models allow for adjusting their width, range, and water flow.
  • Riser pipes don’t cover large areas and thus are best suited for watering smaller plots such as flower beds. The sprinkling part of this type can be adjusted to distribute water at different angles.
  • If you’re looking for sprinkler systems to use in the fields, we'd recommend you to consider a drip irrigator. Since this type of sprinkling system is placed right under the mulch, you'll have an option not only to water your lawn but also promote its growth and enhance its look.

The coverage area is one more important aspect that should be taken into consideration as it will allow you to estimate whether the chosen device will be enough for your lawn or you'll need a couple of them. Generally, pop-up rotary sprinklers and drip hose irrigators are considered to be the most effective when it comes to watering large areas. Among them, you'll find many models that will provide the coverage area up to 5000 square meters, making them a solid choice for commercial use. Speaking of the other types we've mentioned earlier, they usually cover smaller areas and thus are mainly used in household applications.

Last but not least, you should consider the package and how many accessories are included in the box. As a rule, manufacturers supply all hardware and fittings necessary for the assembly of the sprinkling system with the tool, yet, make sure to check this. Some models may also include a few additional sprinkler nozzles to expand the functionality of the system or and provide the user with a few spare parts in case of a breakage. Not all but some sprinkling systems may also come with a screwdriver so that you would not need to buy any other tools in order to put the system together.

Did you know?

Short History of Lawn Sprinkler Invention

People have always strived to use fewer recourses to achieve their aims and it was one of the main reasons a sprinkler system was created. The first American patented system was developed by J. Lessler at the end of the 19th century. It was a simple device consisting of a stand and a watering nozzle that was activated by a water hose. It took people more than 30 years before they started to work on improving the first system and invented rotating sprinkler heads to make the system’s performance more effective. Nowadays, you can get lost in all the variety of systems that are presented on offer.

How Sprinkler System Works

You don’t need to be a technician or an experienced gardener to understand the operation principle of these systems. In spite of different types available on the modern - pop-up sprinklers, riser pipes, etc. - each system works according to the following scenario: you connect it to a water supply system, place sprinkler heads at the needed distance, adjust the timer, coverage patterns, and spray distance (if your system supports them), and simply open a water faucet when it’s time to irrigate your yard.

The Watering Tips for Better Lawn/Garden Conditions

- Perhaps, the first and most important thing you need to keep in mind when watering your land is the time. It’s better to irrigate the land when the weather is still cool and the sun is low. Watering between 5 and 10 a.m. is considered the best time to make your new home sprinkler system work.

- It isn’t recommended to water lawns and gardens at midday and in the evening. The thing is that the water evaporates faster under the sun so you’ll need to spend much more water for effective irrigation than in the morning. As for watering in the evening, it isn’t desirable since grass, flowers, and other plants don’t have enough time dry out properly and can start to rot.

- Tracking the weather conditions, especially the amount of precipitation, will help you save money on water bills. One of the best and most accurate ways to find out whether your lawn gets enough irrigation is using a weather station with a rain gauge option.

- Watering your yard and garden is a seasonal event. There is no need to irrigate the land during late fall or winter. The thing is that when it becomes colder outside, the water in water pipes and hoses can freeze and lead to the damage of your water supply system. That’s why it’s crucial to avoid using it outdoors when the temperature is below 32°F.

The Most Innovative Irrigation Systems

Speaking of the development of innovations, especially those in the field of irrigation, which country comes to your mind? If you’ve thought of Israel, you’re right. You have already heard of smart sprinkles that pair with your appliances to rid you of the necessity of soil state control and manual watering, and the first company to make the initial step towards realizing smart irrigation was CropX. Founded in 2013 with the headquarters in Tel Aviv, Israel, the company launched its first Cloud irrigation service a year after its foundation. The system is capable of determining how much water this or that piece of land requires by measuring the temperature and soil moisture levels. This allows farmers to use minimal water expenses to irrigate the maximum land area.

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Publish Date: 2018-06-05 15:35:23