Golf Course Irrigation Maintenance

Tips on Keeping Up with Maintenance for Your Golf Green

Keeping your golf course irrigation system maintained can prevent costly water waste, keep each of the components working optimally, and add to the life of the system as a whole. Experienced golf course maintenance professionals and irrigation engineers will conduct visual and manual inspections of everything from the central control station to golf rotors and sprinklers.

The pros at Vanden Bussche Irrigation have put together the following tips to help consultants and superintendents maintain the golf course and reduce water use. Refer to the Rain Bird Golf Course Maintenance article for more detailed advice.

Golf Rotors Maintenance

Golf rotors can typically throw out a spray of water anywhere from 30-to-90 feet. Although the components of a golf rotor require little maintenance, worn seals and cracked cases can still be a common issue for this popular product. Worn seals and cracked cases are common issues with golf rotors. Extra TLC throughout the season will help prevent performance issues down the road.

 Occasionally, adjust each rotor on the property to maintain the right arc and overlap. Here are common issues that can arise during your maintenance check:

  • Thatch buildup. Decomposed organic material can block irrigation system nozzles. If this is a continuous problem, it might be worth the time to dig up the rotor and put a riser under it. 
  • Poor rotation. If the rotor fails to rotate, you may need a new rotor and nozzle.
  • Worn Nozzles. Worn nozzles can result in a rough stream of water. This could interfere with the arc and reach of your sprinkler system. Therefore, it's essential to replace worn nozzles as soon as you notice them. 


Fine-Tune Your Controller Program

Use historical evapotranspiration (ET) data, almanacs, and other resources to adjust the controller program.

The most significant water savings occur from monthly programming modifications that include:

  • Peak up. Stay ahead of hot weather by adjusting your central control station during hot weather. This can help prevent turf stress and save water.
  • Dip down. You can shorten the watering schedule to prevent overwatering and waste in cooler weather.

Labeling each zone and adjusting your water budget can save you a tremendous amount of money. For example, consider 15-minute runtimes in cooler weather instead of the typical 24-minute cycles. As a rule of thumb, you can reduce your irrigation system to 80%.

Controller Equipment

Include the following controller equipment on your current maintenance checklist.

  • Wiring: Make sure all wires are correctly connected and routed.
  • Cabinet: Clean up debris from insects and animals. 
  • Battery: Replace the backup battery as specified in the manual.
  • Grounding: Your earth grounding should be 5 ohms or less.
  • Rain Sensor: Adjust the external rain sensor suitably.

Our team at Vanden Bussche is experienced in designing, installing, and maintaining golf course irrigation systems across Ontario. Talk to us about your irrigation needs today, and let us help you. Call any of our locations across Ontario or contact us online.