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Troubleshooting for Sprinkler Timers

With any timed sprinkler system, the timer itself is a very important part of the equation. Any errors in this area can lead to significant watering issues throughout the yard.

At Greenside, our sprinkler installation services include a full and detailed explanation of the timer and any specific requirements here. In cases where issues present themselves that you aren’t specifically familiar with, a simple bit of troubleshooting can often determine and even sometimes solve the problem. Here are a few examples.

Odd Watering Times

Clock and day settings can become skewed for many timer systems, often due to a loss of power or something getting unplugged or disconnected. If you notice that sprinklers are running at odd times, examine the display to be sure the day and time are correct. If not, correct the times and zone settings. If needed, you can set the times and days for a time very soon, such as a few minutes from the current time.

Zones Being Missed

Once again, double-checking here is the first step – make sure your zone settings are as they should be. If a double-check doesn’t do the trick, consult your instruction manual to see if your unit has a self-diagnostic function. It may not provide a solution, but it should at least tell you which zone is creating the problem.

No Sprinklers Running

Check again for simple solutions here, such as a loss of power or a dial turned to the “off” setting by a child. It’s also possible that your timer blew a fuse – if the timer is on and set correctly but the sprinkler still isn’t working, a blown fuse is a possible trigger. Antenna might also be an issue – they typically take a 9-volt battery, so just replace this and see if that solves the issue if nothing else is working.

Turning off Too Quickly

If sprinklers are turning off right away, it’s likely due to faulty duration settings. Double-check by setting the run time for a short duration that you can evaluate right away.

Not Turning Off

Another duration issue is when the sprinkler won’t turn off – it could be due to a timer stuck on the manual setting, or due to a duration set incorrectly. If the dial is correctly placed in the “run” position, correct duration settings as needed. If this doesn’t work, double-check to make sure an external valve isn’t open.

Interested in learning more about sprinkler repair, or any of our residential sprinkler services? Speak to the pros at Greenside today.


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Greenside Sprinkler Repair boasts of dedicated repairmen in Salt Lake City. Contact our experts at Greenside to learn more about our sprinkler repair solutions – everything from valves and dry spots to drip irrigation systems.

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