Waterotor - the water powered automatic irrigation valve
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System Design

Waterotor valves can be used to supply lines of pop up or fixed sprinklers, as well as lines of emitters.

The most critical consideration of system design, is to be sure you have enough sprinklers or emitters on each line, to ensure a minimum water flow of 18 litres per minute through the Waterotor, as required to keep the impellor turning, and the valve advancing to supply each line in turn.

The Waterotor impellor will turn with lesser flows down to about 14 litres, per minute, but if you design at this lower flow you risk the impellor stopping when other demands are made on the water supply, e.g. other taps turned on, or a high general demand use in your area in hot weather resulting in general mains pressure reduction and reduced flow.

Refer to your sprinkler or emitter manufacturer performance charts, and make the calculations necessary to ensure you design for sufficient flow.

Generally, in home garden installation the Waterotor is best suited to supply sprinklers, as it usually requires a large number of emitters over greater than home garden areas to ensure the minimum flow.

Make sure your calculations are correct before installation, which of course applies to all irrigation system design.

All pipework must be at least 20mm internal diameter. Use 25mm pipe from the water supply point to the Waterotor if the distance is more than 10 metres. Pressure and flow loss through the Waterotor is minimal. The pressure loss up to 45 litres per minute is nil, at 55 litres per minute the loss is about 30 K.P.A. and at 65 litres per minute around 70 K.P.A.

We recommend poly pipe and fittings, rigid PVC pipe can be used but is not necessary as the Waterotor is not under static pressure.

The Waterotor will however withstand and operate at pressures up to 800 K.P.A. Do not use metal fittings or over tighten any fittings into the Waterotor threads.

On off control can be as simple as connecting to an existing mains water supply tap (refer to Diagram A).

Manual system

You turn on to initiate irrigation, and off when you have delivered the required water to your garden.

A mechanical or battery operated tap timer can be installed to create a fully automatic system. Selection of a tap timer requires care, to ensure the flow through the timer is not unduly restrictive, as some makes are, refer to the manufacturers' specifications or test for yourself.

The Waterotor valve does not require on off pressure pulses to change to the next line as other sequential control valves do. Once turned on the Waterotor will continue to cycle through each line, supplying an equal amount of water to each group of sprinklers until the water supply is turned off.

When next the Waterotor is turned on it will restart exactly where it stopped. If that for example was line 3 then that is where it will start again.

It will not waste water by going back to line 1 and starting over again. The volume of water supplied to each line is always exactly the same.

Station Timing does not exist with Waterotor. You do not need, and cannot create, different run times for different stations or sprinkler lines.

The System is water volume based, and every sprinkler line receives the same volume, just the same as nature supplies rain evenly to your whole garden.

The total volume applied depends on the total time you run the system. Each cycle takes about 18 to 24 minutes which equates with a 6 Port Valve to about 3 to 4 minutes per sprinkler line per cycle.

Water supply from a pump, as with effluent waste water management systems is ideal for Waterotor, as the on off Control of the pump, usually from a float switch results in a completely automatic system with no other controller required.

Waterotor valves are best used buried underground, or in a valve box with the dome top uppermost connected as shown in Diagram B.

Waterotor connections

Interport connection can be achieved as shown in Diagram C. Using this arrangement will convert a 6 Port Waterotor to a 3 Port, or a 4 Port to a 2 Port.

Interport connections

You can also convert a 6 Port to a 5 Port or a 4 to a 3 Port, but a sprinkler line so connected will receive twice as much water as when connected to a single port.

Do not blank off any port, they must all be connected to a sprinkler line. If a port is closed off, flow through the Waterotor stops when this port is reached, and the impellor stops turning.

Avoid the use of a 90° elbow immediately connected to the Waterotor inlet port. Use a straight connector and at least a short piece of pipe, before any elbow, as shown in Diagram B. This ensures a turbulence free flow of water to the Waterotor impellor for better performance.

The Waterotor can be placed anywhere that suits your layout. It can be at the edge of your garden close to your supply tap, or out in the centre as shown in Diagram D. The Waterotor can be installed above ground if desired, but needs to be protected from direct sunlight by some form of cover. If left unprotected on very hot days the water within the valve can reach very high temperature when it is not in use, and cause fittings to soften.

Diagram D shows a basic layout for full, part, quarter circle sprinklers covering a lawn and shrub garden between 9m and 13.5m long by 6m to 9m wide with the Waterotor in the centre. An inlet supply line to the Waterotor from the garden tap is not shown.

Basic system layout

The diagram is intended to give the designer/installer the basic idea of pipe and sprinkler layout, but of course no two gardens are the same and every installation requires a custom design.

Some installers layout the whole system on top of the garden, using stakes to hold the sprinklers in place, and test run the system to ensure adequate coverage, before placing it underground. This makes modification to the system, should it be necessary, much easier.

Flush all pipework to remove debris, before turning a new system on particularly the inlet line to the Waterotor.

This will ensure that small stones, dirt, etc, that has entered the pipework while installing is not flushed into the Waterotor mechanism or sprinkler nozzles.

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