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Annual irrigation system maintenance helps prevent water loss
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Maintaining your irrigation system is one of the most effective ways to reduce wasted water. - photo by Photo Contributed

Although the recent rains have prevented the necessity for turning on the sprinklers, warmer weather is approaching and it is important to prepare irrigation systems accordingly. A poorly maintained irrigation system prevents water from reaching its intended source and instead is lost to runoff, evaporation and deep watering below the root zone. Maintaining your irrigation system is one of the most effective ways to reduce wasted water, reduce pollution from run-off and over-irrigation, and improve plant health by applying the correct amount of water where it can be utilized by the landscape.

Ideally, irrigation systems should be checked on a monthly basis. However, a minimum check of the irrigation system should be performed twice seasonally. Once at the beginning of the season when the system is first turned on and again halfway through the season.


1. Inspect the controller and make sure it’s plugged in and functioning.

2. Update the time and date.

3. Check the connection on all of the wires – make sure that rain, wind, or soil moisture sensors are connected.

4. Replace the back-up battery.

5. Change the schedule to reflect the City of Turlock’s allowed watering days and times.

6. Turn on each zone and look for system damage such as:

—  Leaking valves or pipes

—  Broken or missing heads

—  Clogged nozzles

—  Seal leaks

—  Sunken heads

—  Tilted heads

For questions or additional information, please contact the Municipal Services Department at 209-668-5590. Brought to you by the City of Turlock Municipal Services Department.


Replace your turf grass and receive a rebate of up to $2,000: The State of California’s Department of Water Resources (DWR) has a rebate program for removing turf and replacing it with landscapes that require little water. Single-family homes are eligible for this rebate. Visit to find out more on how to apply.