Regular vs Automatic Sprinkler System: Which Is Better?

September 25, 2018 | Gardening, posted by Sasha

sprinklers on grass

Rain is pouring throughout most of Central Texas in the past few weeks. But, depending on only rain to get your lawns watered can spell trouble. When the rains go away and the temperatures start to decline, it can be difficult to go out and water your lawn consistently. This could lead to dead grass, which can be expensive to replace.

For this, it’s recommended that you use lawn sprinkler systems. They are useful to help keep your lawn healthy and properly watered. They come in many varieties, both automatic and manual sprinkler systems, which can be difficult for some who might not be aware of which system works best for them. Here are some benefits and disadvantages for the most common types of sprinklers and why they are worth trying out for your lawn.

Benefits Of Automatic Lawn Sprinkler Systems

Time saved: It goes without saying, but using an automatic lawn sprinkler system saves time that would otherwise be spent on manually watering your lawn or setting down sprinklers.

Precise watering that better reaches the root system: Installing multiple sprinkler heads throughout your lawn can ensure that you have your entire lawn covered. This in turn helps solve many of the headaches commonly experienced with knowing whether you’ve overwatered or underwatered your lawn.

Programmable watering schedules: Are you worried that you won’t remember to water your lawn at night? No problem! Automatic lawn sprinkler systems help run a watering schedule following presets. Add in the fact that some systems have rain sensors or temperature gauges that help adapt watering schedules to be more efficient and you can see why they’re a great option for homeowners.

Money saved: Watering your lawn at just the precise time with the precise amount of water is essential. Thankfully, following those guidelines is easy with automatic lawn sprinkler systems. They’re able to be programmed with little to no effort, making them an attractive option for homeowners who wish to focus on other more important home matters.

Disadvantages Of Automatic Lawn Sprinkler Systems

Cost of the system: More functionality comes with a hefty price tag at times, and not surprisingly asking for more features can in turn cost you more. Prices for fully featured systems can go up to $3,000 or even $4,000 if professionally installed. If you own extensive amounts amounts of land this amount could increase even more.

The need for professional contractors: While the DIYer in you might want to tackle the project alone, it’s important to take into consideration how complex some automatic water sprinkler systems are. They require pipes, control boxes, sprinkler heads, and all of that needs to placed in a precise place to cover your lawn well. Going for a professional installer is the best option to reap the most benefits.

Maintenance is essential: Keeping a complex system running well requires the need of a professional to regularly check your system. This will ensure that your lawn is properly watered and that no issues arise with use.

Installing the system is best done before you lay down sod: If you want to install a system it’s best to do so before there is any grass. If not, this could mean that you have to repair your lawn after the professional installs the pipes and sprinkler heads.

Benefits Of Traditional Lawn Sprinkler Systems

Watering your lawn is easier than doing it by hand: Traditional lawn sprinkler systems are a superior choice to simply walking around with a water hose. They allow you to simply place the sprinkler where necessary and let the system do its job.

Disadvantages of Traditional Lawn Sprinkler Systems

Sprinklers and hoses remain on your lawn: Once you water your lawn you will have to pick up the hose and system to ensure nobody trips over it. It’s a small annoyance, but one that will often take time to do. Compare that to automatic sprinkler systems which retract after watering and you’ll see why many opt for that option.

Coverage is a hit or miss: Have you seen those lawns that have an overwatered lawn area while the rest of the yard looks yellow? Most water sprinklers only spray water in a set direction, which means that the only way you can cover your entire lawn is by moving the sprinkler around by hand.

Wasted water: It goes without saying, but failing to turn off your water sprinklers can mean a costly water bill. This comes as a result of you having to manually shut off the system once you feel that the lawn has been properly watered.

Your lawn may or may not be watered correctly: As mentioned before, you are responsible for turning off the water sprinklers. This means that you may overwater or underwater if you turn off the system before.

You or someone has to water your lawn: If you’re going for a traditional lawn sprinkler you have to ensure that someone will be there to activate the system. If you leave for a few weeks on a trip or for work you could return to grass that is in serious need of some water.

Properly Water Your Lawn To Keep It Healthy

Regardless of what system you decide to use for your grass, proper watering is an undeniably essential component of lawn maintenance–one that will help establish your new sod or ensure its continued health. Check out our watering guide for more tips or contact us to get started on your new lawn today.