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Glossary of Terms

Back Flow

Any unwanted flow of used or non-potable water or substance from any domestic, industrial or institutional piping system into the pure, potable water distribution system.

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Backflow prevention device

A safety device which prevents the flow of water from the water distribution system back to the water source.

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Bubbler

A water emission device which bubbles water directly to the ground or throws water a short distance before contacting the ground.

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Check Valve

A valve which prevents unwanted drainage from a sprinkler.

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Circuit

A complete path for electrical current from a power source to a load or electrical device and back to the voltage source through the ground.

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Controller Programming

A device which is capable of setting water days, stations, and start times for the irrigation programs.

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Controller Setup

Set up responsible for setting time and date, configuring master valves, assigning pumps and configuring other basic information to the controller.

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Controllers

An electrical timing device operating each designated zone for a predetermined time and frequency which sends electric signals for automatic valves to open and close according to a set schedule.

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Cycle and Soak

A controller programming feature that breaks up a stations watering time into short watering segments, allowing the soil to absorb the water before irrigation continues.

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Drip Irrigation System

Also known as trickle irrigation or microirrigation, Drip irrigation is an irrigation method which saves water and fertilizer by allowing water to drip slowly to the roots of plants, either onto the soil surface or directly onto the root zone, through a network of valves, pipes, tubing, and emitters.

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ET-based scheduling

A water-wise irrigation method that automatically adjusts watering times based on evapotranspiration (ET) rate in the area.

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Evaporation

Water vaporization from a plant or soil surface.

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Evapotranspiration

The sum of evaporation and transpiration.

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Evapotranspiration Rate

A rate which is measured by how quickly plant material loses water in a given geographical area. Rates vary by season. Measurement taken in inches. Rate is influenced by solar radiation, temperature, relative humidity and wind.

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Fertigation

The application of nutrients through an irrigation system.

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Filters

An attachment to a spray nozzle used to reduce clogging of nozzles.

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Impact Sprinklers

An older form of a long reach sprinkler.

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Irrigation Timer

Simple controllers consisting of clock units which are capable of operating one or more irrigation systems at a time.

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Lateral break

A break located on a non-pressurized line.

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Mainline

Water delivery pipelines that supply water from the control station to the manifolds that are usually under constant pressure as it supplies water from the point of connection to the control valves, or to the valve-in-head sprinklers.

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Mainline break

A break located on the pressurized line. This type of break will produce water immediately after the pipe is compromised.

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Microsprayers

A small type of nozzles which distributes small amounts of water.

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Nozzle

A mechanical device designed to control the direction or characteristics of a fluid flow as it exits (or enters) an enclosed chamber or pipe.  It is frequently used to control the rate of flow, speed, direction, mass, shape, and/or the pressure of the stream that emerges from it.

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Overspray

A spray scenario which often happens in windy situations or when a nozzle is not the correct size or on the correct setting.

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Pop-up

A sprinkler with a valve which opens and the sprinkler rises up (pops up) from the ground. Pop-up heights vary from 2″, 3″, 4″, 6″ and 12″.

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Potable Water

Domestic or drinking water. This water can be used as a source for irrigation water, but once it enters the irrigation system and passes through the backflow device it is no longer considered potable.

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Pressure

The amount of energy available to move water through a pipe, sprinkler or emitter.

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Rain Master Irrigation Systems

Central control or irrigation via the internet through a secure wireless connection which can transmit programming information, operating data and alarms.

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Rain shutoff

Programmable or manual shut off of irrigation clocks during a rainy period. Also known as rain off.

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Risers

A fixed sprinkler head above ground used to irrigate ground cover and shrubs.

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Rotor sprinkler

A rotating sprinkler. Replacing most impacts with rotors is an efficient move.

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Solenoid

A device that turns electrical energy into mechanical motion.

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Spray head nozzle

A sprinkler head which does not rotate.

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Spray or Spray head

Sprinklers which spray in a fixed pattern.

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Surge protectors

Protect main circuitry from damage by popping a fuse. Common causes are due to a bad solenoid and power outages.

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Swing joints

A device which is used when installing subterranean sprinklers to avoid ground breaks below. Allows the sprinkler to move slightly without breaking the fittings or pipe.

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Throw

The distance which water is projected from the sprinkler head to the furthest point of water travels until hitting the ground.

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Transpiration

The release of water vapor from plant leaves.

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Valves

A device used to control water flow.

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Water budget

A programming feature that lets you adjust station run times without reprogramming each station.

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