I have always been very aware of how much water I’m using in my lawn and I’ve always been trying my best to use as little water as possible to keep my lawn green and growing all season lawn. With my new Irrigreen installation that I did myself I’m able to use even less water than I was using before because I don’t have any overspray anywhere any more.
Although I used to irrigate infrequently and deeply and at the right hours of the day to waste as little water as possible my new heads are even better because my irregularly shaped yard with lots of curved lines are now able to be watered without setting a spray pattern to overspray the line into my garden beds or onto the sidewalks.
Not only that but the entire lawn space that used be be watered by 10 different heads circling around my lawn is now able to be watered by a single head right in the middle…that means I’m never going to hit the sprinkler head with a car tire or a lawn edger ever again.
Did you know that you can get a discount on an Irrigreen smart sprinkler system. All you have to do is price out a system for your yard with their online tool here and if you decide to buy one you can get a free sprinkler head using the code “TURFMECH”. Not a bad deal considering these sprinkler heads cost hundreds of dollars on their own each.
Is Irrigreen The Best Modern Irrigation System?
Before I start sounding like a raving fanboy though I do want to warn you though that after having used mine for the past few months there are a few things I don’t like about it. None are likely to be deal breakers other than the cost but they should be stated up front.
If you have heavy wind then the longer spray distances can cause overspray into areas that you don’t want water to go. Likewise the wind might underapply water into certain areas if the wind is too strong.
Also, because of the larger droplet sizes that must be sent out for upwards of 25-feet or more in any single direction, this sprinkler system in it’s current state is not going to be a smart irrigation system for yard owners trying to germinate seed. The water flow will likely be too abrasive and will wash away or simply move around the seed too much.
For many people price will be the deal breaker because not only are you buying a smart controller with this system but also every head is like a tiny computer. Not only do you have to trench a water line to the heads but you have to add a cable to them as well which can be problematic for running lines under pavement. I was able to do this myself under my own driveway but not without a lot of manual labor.
Stick With me, I’ll get to the Pros further down in this review.
Is Irrigreen Worth It For It’s Cost?
Before we talk about specs I do want you to know that I am happy I installed this system in my yard and I think it’s worth the price if you can afford it.
It’s not outlandish to budget a few thousand dollars or more for a 4-5 zone system, and that’s before digging, trenching, and installing. Readers of this website do however get a free head with an order from Irrigreen though so long as the coupon code “turfmech” is used during the purchasing phase.
You can check the pricing out for your own lawn through this link…and you don’t even have to talk to a human if you don’t want to go forward with a purchase.
But with that out of the way let me share with you my story installing and setting up my Irrigreen system in my front yard. It all started with having a plumber come out and tapping into my main water line to give me a dedicated PVC zone just for the Irrigreen water source.
Water Line Prep For Irrigreen
After the plumber came out I ended up having to make a few additional repairs to my old sprinkler valves before I trenched in the new lines to the middle of the yard. Here’s the video I made on that process.
PVC Repairs Made Prior To Trenching
After I had the water lines and emergency shutoff valves installed I then setup an above-ground dry run for the first Irrigreen sprinkler head. To do this I used my garden hose and a few couplers and PVC attachments to connect the hose water to the sprinkler head that I propped up in the middle of the yard. This gave me a chance to see with my own eyes that I had enough water pressure to the sprinkler head to shoot the water a full 25 feet to the furthest reaches of my front yard.
The company and manual say you need at least 40 PSI of water pressure and you need to be able to fill a 5-gallon bucket at your spigot in less than 45-seconds to use these heads and I tested both to confirm I met these requirements but still I wanted to see the proof before I actually dug them into the ground.
As it turns out I did indeed have enough pressure (and water flow) to send the water more than 30-feet, well into the street. Take a look at this video for the full story behind my dry-run using my Irrigreen sprinkler with my hose.
My Above Ground Irrigreen Setup
Make sure to price out how much an Irrigreen system will be for your yard here.
With the hose-end system tested I fiddled around with the calibration of the sprinkler head using my smart phone app and ultimately decided I had to get the system in the ground to do this well because the mapping of the yard depends on the unit not moving and being sunk a little more than a foot into the ground.
I could have gotten this job done a lot faster if I had paid an irrigation installer or a landscaper to do the trenching and installation for me but I wanted to do it myself because the company say’s pain as day on it’s website that this is a DIY-friendly below ground installation that any homeowner can do.
I was able to do it but it was way harder to manually trench and connect all the water lines correctly by myself, especially because this isn’t something I do every day. A Pro with experience and the right tools could do this quickly, for me it took me a couple days to get just the first sprinkler head attached an running.
To further document the process I filmed the whole thing and you can see it right here.
I Hand Trenched Sprinkler Lines For My Irrigreen Installation
With the main yard fully operational I then started legitimately mapping out my yard using the phone app on my Android device. During the week that I installed the first unit the app was updated to a new and improved UX dashboard that was significantly easier to use than the earlier version.
I was able to map out a rough layout for the sprinkler head in about a minute without even having to watch a tutorial video and then I quickly realized that with pinch and zoom I was able to achieve really fine precision targeting of the spray by adding a ton of points, especially on the curves of my property line.
I should say another negative to this system is that it can’t spray any less than five feet so if you want to water a thin area or parkway strip by the sidewalk or road then you have to keep that in mind. A five foot wide sidewalk strip would require a 180-degree setup with zero-points set to the other side of the sphere.
When planning for my installation I decided that I didn’t want to bother with setting up Irrigreen on my sidewalk-strip and would use the hybrid setup where you can run Irrigreen sprinkler heads on some zones of your lawn and traditional sprinkler heads on other zones. The controller actually has a number of slots to control those standard zones so you don’t need to have multiple control boxes (clocks) for each type of sprinkler.
I also didn’t have any obstacles in my front yard that didn’t break line-of-sight with the spray pattern; if I did then the cost of the system would go up with the need to install extra sprinkler heads. For instance if I had a tree ring in the middle of the yard and I didn’t want to water in the tree ring then I’d need one sprinkler head on one side and a second on the other even if a single head could cover the entire space.
The biggest trouble I did have though was dealing with my paved driveway in the next phase of the installation. Instead of using a PVC water jet to send a water line from one side of the driveway to the other I had to tunnel under the driveway with a much larger 1-1/2″ PVC pipe so that I could snake the sprinkler cable through the pipe along with a second smaller PVC line that carried the water. I was able to get this job done but again it was very difficult to get such a large pipe under a 15-foot wide driveway complete with compacted underlayment.
See the following video for my documentation of that process.
Running Irrigation Lines Under My Driveway By Hand
Remember, I’m doing everything manually (by hand). Had I paid an installer to do this for me it would have been quick and easy; I just would have had to pay for the day labor which I didn’t want to do to save money.
I could have stopped there and setup the second sprinkler head on my front yard on the other side of my driveway but I decided I wanted to run a line to the back yard also to install two more sprinklers there so the process wasn’t over; it did get easier though because all the plumbing and tunneling was behind me. For this phase all I had to do was daisy-chain the single trench to the back yard in a straight line which was super easy to do.
One of the biggest pros about setting up Irrigreen compared to a traditional in-ground sprinkler system is that trenching is actually way easier. There’s a lot less digging involved because you don’t have to go all the way around your lawn-space, you just trench to the middle of it and then trench in a straight line to the middle of the next zone and so on to the end of the line.
Because I used the Irrigreen mapping tool on their website I knew I could cover the back yard with just a couple extra irrigation cords and heads which made the price higher but the overall cost per zone lower.
Afterall, the cost of the Irrigreen controller is fixed. It’s the same for a yard with one zone or a yard with 10 zones. Adding more zones brings the cost per zone down, kind of like a discount.
Also, keep in mind that using the coupon code “turfmech” also gives you an extra free sprinkler head so don’t pass up on that perk if you are thinking of getting a system like this for yourself.
Is The Irrigreen Precision Sprinkler System For Everybody?
I don’t think this is for everybody by a landslide…but it is perfect for a lot of lawns.
The smaller your yard is the more likely a different precision robot sprinkler like Otto sprinklers will be right for you. Even above ground installations for only a zone or two can probably be better served with a hose end smart sprinkler.
These systems aren’t going to offer the same kind of coverage or the same potential for water savings but that might be OK if your lawn is small enough.
Also, lawns that are perfectly square or rectangular probably won’t get a lot of benefit out of the layout features and point mapping Irrigreen offers. Most lawn owners are easily able to water lawns with lots of right angles just fine even if they aren’t perfectly efficient.
For larger lawns with more zones and especially properties with curved lines or angles located in areas of the country that don’t get a lot of rainfall then the Irrigreen robot sprinkler is an amazing tool in the shed. I liken it to solar panels in hot/sunny areas of the country that help your home stay green in an environmentally friendly way.
I have purchased five homes in my lifetime and I am positive that I would pay more for a home that had an Irrigreen system installed in it already; it’s that good. I don’t think appraisers are notating these systems for valuation just yet but I would be surprised if this kind of investment doesn’t pay for itself in the form of water savings and property value in the near future.
The pros to Irrigreen are vast and I think it’s worth it for a lot of people all over this country.
Make sure to price out a system for your own property here, even if you don’t think you can afford it and then take a look at your water bill; how many years of water savings would it take to break even? Could be fewer than you realize.