Frequently Asked Questions

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Can I pay my bill online? 

You most certainly can. Just click here and follow the instructions!

How can I be sure I will get a good system? 

A good lawn sprinkler system is one that is flexible enough for your watering needs. It will put the right amount of water in each area and it will keep operating year after year with minimal maintenance. Your satisfaction with the system will depend ultimately on:

  • The quality of the system components.
  • The craftsmanship of the installation.

We use only components that are professional-grade and engineered, manufactured and tested to give years of trouble-free service.

Why do I have to have a backflow device and does my installation contractor have to be licensed? 

Lawn sprinkler systems, as most are connected to your city water supply, must meet local codes regarding backflow devices. These devices prevent contaminated water from being siphoned back into the water supply. The type of device required and the necessary building permits licenses and certifications required by contractors vary from city to city. While any licensed Illinois plumber can install a backflow device, only an Illinois CCCDI can test that device or assembly. At Commercial Irrigation, we can take care of everything for you with our CCCDI certified plumbers.

How can I tell if I have enough water pressure to have a sprinkler system installed? 

Our staff will do a pressure test and design your system to ensure your sprinklers will operate at the optimal pressure effectiveness. Should a larger water meter or pump be required, we will advise you ahead of time about the specific details involving them.

How often should I check my irrigation system's performance? 

It’s a good idea to check it frequently during the peak watering season to make sure that everything is functioning correctly and water is being applied as needed to the plant material and lawn areas. It is very easy to add a remote device to use as you walk around your property. We do offer this service of inspection during the summer months if you choose. We offer mid-season service checks to ensure your system is working and performing at its optimum.

What should I look for during my system performance checks? 

Turn on each zone and observe the operation to make sure the spray from each sprinkler is going where it’s needed. Make sure all rotary sprinklers are rotating in their intended arc. Look for any wet or dry spots and see if there is an obvious reason why that is occurring. Also, be aware that sometimes the controller may need to be adjusted if temperatures are extremely hot or cold, or if there was recent precipitation.

How much time do I run my sprinklers to water my lawn effectively? 

Our technicians will set the time on each zone according to your soil and site conditions after installation. Typically, rotary heads in full sun should run between 30-45 minutes per zone. Spray zones for lawn and shrubs can vary, but a 10 - 15 minute run time would be average. During warmer weather, all new controllers have a seasonal percentage button to increase the time without changing the entire program individually.

How long does it take to install a system and what about my existing lawn and landscape? 

The average system will take one to two days to install. We use state-of-the-art equipment to pull the pipe through your lawn. After a few weeks, the seams in the turf will disappear. Our crews are trained to protect your existing landscape and plant material. When digging in shrub beds, our crews take special care not to disturb the roots of your valuable trees and shrubs. They are trained on how to lift existing brick walkways and have the necessary equipment to saw cut or bore underneath driveways if needed.

Spring irrigation system checklist:

Spring Opening:

  • Before turning on any water to the system, make sure all manual drain valves are returned to the “closed” position.
  • Open the system main water valve slowly to allow pipes to fill the water gradually. If these valves are opened too quickly, sprinkler main lines are subjected to high surge pressures, uncontrolled flow and water hammer.
  • Verify the proper operation of each zone valve by manually activating it from the controller.
  • Walk through each station on the controller, checking for proper operation of the zone. Check for proper operating pressure (low pressure indicates a line break or missing head), proper rotation and adjustment of sprinkler heads, and adequate coverage. Check and clean filters on poorly performing sprinklers. Adjust heads to grade as necessary.
  • Reprogram the controller for automatic watering. Replace the controller backup battery if necessary.
  • Inspect the rain sensor, if applicable.
  • Finish and clean any in-line filters for drip irrigation zones.

It is recommended that our certified irrigation technician perform this type of service in order not to void your warranty.

Winterization of your irrigation system:

It is recommended that our certified irrigation technician perform this type of “Winterization” in order not to void your warranty. The blow-out method utilizes an air compressor with a Cubic Foot per Minute (CFM) rating of 80-100 for any mainline of 2” or less. The compressor is attached to the mainline via a quick coupler, hose bib or other type of connection, which is located after the backflow device. Compressed air should not be blown through any backflow device.

To start the “blow out”, shut off the irrigation water supply and, with the compressor valve in the closed position, attach the air compressor hose to the fitting. Activate the first zone via the controller. Slowly open the compressor valve to allow the air to flow to this zone. Make sure the compressor does not exceed 80 PSI when blowing out the system. Once the station/zone is dry, you should not continue to blow air through the pipe. Compressed air moving through dry pipes can cause friction, which will create heat and the heat could cause damage. Go to the next zone once you start seeing mist from the furthest head on the zone. Repeat the above step for all the zones on the system. Sometimes it is a good idea to run through the system a second time to ensure all water is gone. Lastly, unplug the clock and remove the backup battery. This will help in the event there are any power outages or voltage spikes.

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