Eliminate Urban Runoff
Smart watering eliminates urban runoff from most lawn sprinklers in urban areas. Urban runoff occurs because too water is applied too rapidly, or the soil is too saturated on the surface to absorb it. Runoff can occur even on flat ground.
The first and most important step to eliminate urban runoff is requiring installation of self-adjusting, weather-based ET irrigation controllers which will automatically adjust the irrigation to track the weather as shown to the right. This smart watering will reduce urban runoff which contaminates streams, beaches and drinking water.
"Stop RUNOFF - Set Cycle Limit" will
If the soil is not saturated, then the second smart watering step to eliminate runoff also eliminates erosion. This second smart watering step breaks long runtimes for the valves into shorter hourly cycles. For example, a valve set to run for 40 minutes may cause runoff. But, if this 40 minutes of water is limited to 8 minutes per hour, then this water is applied over 5 hours and may be slow enough to be absorbed by the soil. See photo to right.
The "Cycle Limit" is set to 4 minutes per hour at the factory and will serve most situations. A simple technique to determine a better cycle limit is shown to the right. But most homeowners will not need to change the factory Cycle Limit of 4 minutes of watering per hour for each valve.
This "cycle and soak" watering drives the water deeper into the dry sub-surface and allows air into the soil which encourages deeper roots. Because the roots are strengthened, the branches and leaves are also strong and healthy so that they break the size and the speed of rain drops and irrigation water thrown at the landscape. Reducing the size and the speed of the water drops eliminate the splashing and tearing actions of water drops on soils which are the prime cause of erosion.
Because smart watering creates strong plants with extensive roots and open soils, the landscape will act as a large sponge during heavy rains. Also, because the water is delivered deeply where it is needed rather than running off, the runtime for the valve may be reduced from 40 to 30 or maybe 20 minutes which will also conserve water.
To stabilize slopes, only enough irrigation must be applied to meet the needs of the plants. Soils must avoid lubrication from excess water.
To stabilize slopes, the irrigation must penetrate the soil to encourage roots to grow deeply to bind the surface soils to deep soils.
Smart watering automatically delivers these combined watering practices.
Eliminate damaging mold and moss growing on wet concrete and dirt.
Over-watering is the cause of mold and moss.
Smart Watering is the solution.
The Smart Timer provides a very simple procedure to determine whether the Cycle Limit should be 8 minutes per hour. This practical procedure is described below.
This simple test avoids the complicated inputs required by some ET controllers such as entering the following data for each valve