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Sprinkler Precipitation Rate (Water Volume)

Precipitation rate varies for all sprinkler hoses, systems and zones. You can measure the sprinkler precipitation rate of your irrigation device to more accurately determine how long you need to water.

There is a simple test you can perform to determine your sprinkler precipitation rate. Place a rain gauge or straight-edged “tuna” can around the sprinkler. Run the sprinkler for 15 minutes. Measure the amount of water in the can with a ruler. Multiply your results by 4. This is your hourly precipitation rate for that zone, or irrigation device.

If your irrigation system is low volume, you may have to run it for 30 minutes and then multiply by 2, to get your hourly rate.

Multiple “catch” cans may be used, and the results averaged, for increased accuracy. This is especially useful when measuring on a slope or hill side.

Enter your precipitation rate in inches per hour.

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