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Glossary

COMMON TERMS


Diameter This is the total distance around the outside of a circle. The diameter of a sprinkler is the distance around the outside of the wetted area the sprinkler covers with water.

O.D. Outside diameter - This refers to tubing normally and is the size of the outside of the tubing.

I.D. Inside Diameter - Same as above but it is for the inside of the tubing.

Notes:
In irrigation we refer to tubing by the I.D. or O.D. or both. It matters when you are choosing fittings for the size tubing you have. It can be confusing but two simple rules will guide you to the correct match.
1) If the fittings goes INSIDE the tubing the size spec's will be refering to the I.D. of the tubing.
2) If the fittings go outside the tubing then the spec's will be refering to the O.D. of the tubing.

Flow Rate
The amount of water which will pass through during a given period of time. Drippers, microsprinklers, filters, valves, pressure regulators, tubing, pipe and any other component which has water flow through it will have a flow rate.

GPH
Gallons Per Hour - One of the ways to measure the water flow. The number before the GPH will tell you how many gallons will flow through in one hours time. All drippers and microsprinklers are rated in this manner! Do not confuse this with GPM (Gallons per Minute).

GPM
Gallons Per Minute - This rates the flow through something by the minute. Most conventional irrigation products use this method.
Note: When this method is used there will be much more flow than with the above GPH method. Example: 1 GPM = 60 GPH

MPT - Male pipe thread - You know it sticks out like a guy.......that's it, I'm done.
FPT - Female pipe thread - Like a lady..................................not going there!
MHT - Male hose thread
FHT - Female hose thread


Pipe Thread is a finer thread found on all your PVC, Brass and metal threaded fittings.
Hose Thread is a coarser thread found on common garden hoses and faucets.
Note: Sometimes you will see "FNPT" ot "MNPT". The "N" is just a designation of Nominal. Everything in irrigation that is "PT" (Pipe Thread) all has the same thread count so we drop the "N" to make it less gibberish.

Hose Bib / Hose Faucet
Both of these are the same and it would be any faucet to which a normal garden hose can attach too. This could be coming out of the side of your house or one in your garden / landscaping away from your house.

PSI
Pounds per Square Inch - A measurement of pressure within a closed container.

Mesh
One of the ways to measure filter screens and how fine or small the water passages through them are. The higher the number the finer the screen is. A 200 mesh screen filters out smaller dirt than a 100 mesh screen.

PVC
Poly Vinyl Chloride - This is the common white water pipe found in home centers and hardware stores. It is mostly used for irrigation pipe and comes in different wall thickness. The most common is called a "Schedule 40 PVC pipe". All PVC fittings are "Schedule 80".

Note: Always use schedule 40 PVC pipe. There is also a thin walled PVC pipe but you do not want to use this.....trust me on this, stick with the schedule 40.

UV
The harmful Ultraviolet rays from the sun. Many products have a UV inhibitor called Carbon Black to extend the life span of the product before it is broken down from the UV rays.

AC / DC and Solar
Used when talking about irrigation controllers and the solenoids on valves which they "control"
AC is normal household power. Plugged into a normal household wall outlet.
DC is battery powered
Solar is powered by the sun and normally has an internal battery of some sort to store the solar power. Note: Always match the controller type (AC/DC) with the same type of solenoid on the valve the controller will be......controlling. AC Controller uses AC solenoid valve

TUBING


Poly or PE Tube (polyethylene)

This is the black or now sometimes brown tubing used in Drip Irrigation. There are many different sizes out there so be aware what size you are purchasing.
There is 1", 3/4" and 1/2".
1/2" is the most commonly used. but there are three (3) different 1/2" sizes sold. .520 x .620
.600 x .700 (The most common, try to always use this size!!)
.610 x .710

Microtube
This can refer to either 1/4" or 1/8" and sometimes is nicknamed "Spagettii tubing" (Not by the industry) Once again size matters!
1/4" is the most common. It is used to go off 1/2" poly tube to individual plants and have a dripper placed on the end. Some smaller systems can be made up of just 1/4" microtube.
1/8" is less common. It has only very specific applications so be sure you need it before buying. Some products have 1/8" microtube in a special size which only works for them so read the product spec's carefully.

Drip Line or Dripperline
This is a 1/2" or 1/4" size poly tubing with drippers installed inside the tube. All you see is a slight buldge in the tube and two little holes, one on each side of the tube (1/4" only has one hole). Dripper flow rates vary as does the spacing of the drippers so find the match which is right for you.

Soaker Tape
A thin walled tube which lays flat when no water pressure is present. This tube has drippers installed at the factory during the manufacturing process.


FITTINGS
Many different sizes and styles here are the most common and how they work.


Compression Fittings
A style of fitting which tubing goes inside of. Inside the fitting there is a sharp edge angled backwards toward the inside of the fitting which grabs the tubing. The water pressure when the system is turned on pushes the tubing against this sharp edge increasing the holding power.

Barbed Fittings
These fittings go inside the tubing and have an outward facing sharp edge to grab the tubing. The advantage here is they leave a smooth surface along the outside of the tubing so if you will need to move the tubing at some point there are no edges to get caught on obsticles. They also are not very visiable once installed.

Spin-Loc Fittings
This fitting has an inner part that goes inside the tubing and then an outside part that locks over the outside by twisting it.

Universal Nut-Lock Fitting
Similar to a Sin-Loc but fits a wider range of tubing sizes. Works with tubing that have an O.D. (Outside Diameter) of .620, .700 and .710


DRIPPERS


Pressure Compensating
This dripper will compensate for higher or lower pressure and give you a very close flow rate with either. This feature allows you to make the longest possible single lines with the most drippers on it.

Non-Compensating
This dripper does not compensate the flow rate at differences in pressure. With these drippers if you have higher pressure you will receive a higher flow rate out of the dripper. This difference may not be huge but it is more difference than if you use compensating drippers.

Turbulent Flow
This is one way that drippers can regulate the flow of water. It is a method of making the water move through a very winding passageway before it can exit the dripper.

Self Flushing / Self Cleaning
Most compensating drippers have a self flushing feature now days. When a dripper starts to receive water flow (pressure) it opens up for a split second to allow any dirt / sediment out before restricting the flow at its normal flow rate. This also happens when the flow is shut off.

Non-Drip / Non-Draining
What this does is once pressure is turned off to the dripper and it drops to a certain level (PSI) the dripper closes and will not let water drain out. This is essential for systems where the water supply is above the plants (Overhead). It also matters where you have long lateral lines that have an elevation drop, even slightly because without this feature water will drain out the lowest dripper until the line empties out. This can give too much water/nutrients to plants at the end of a lateral line.

Check Valve
A check valve works a little like a non-drip but it's main feature is once pressure is turned off and drops to a certain level the dripper will not allow anything to be sucked back into it by water draining out lower drippers. This is essential for drippers which might get partially buried in dirt or covered with mulch. Sometime in a hydroponic setting where the drippers are placed in trays that fill up with water and the dripper can be submerged at times.

SYSTEM PARTS

Pressure Regulator
A device which controls the amount of pressure allowed on the water outlet side. This controls how high the pressure will be in a drip system. We sell both pre-set and adjustable models.

Backflow / Anti-siphion
This is a device which keeps water that has passed through it from returning into the water source. This will keep your water supply from becoming contaminated with water that has fertilizer in it (if you are doing that) or just from water that has been in irrigation lines. You should always try to use one. Some locations mandate the use of these in local building codes.

Head Assembly
This can be just one component or many. What it really means is any and all components which are on the start of a drip system. Sometimes it could be referred to as a Manifold but normally a manifold would be a group of many valves all supplied water by a single source.

Manifold
This is different than a Head Assembly. The manifold is normally a group of valves supplied by a single source of water.

Mainline
This can refer to a main water supply line going to a manifold or also a mainline coming from your manifold supplying other lines.

Retrofit
Refers to the changing over of something existing. We use it when talking about changing over existing sprinkler systems to Drip.

Solenoid
A device which is activated electronically by an irrigation controller and controls the on - off function of a valve.

Valve
This can be an automated or manual valve. Anything that can turn on or off the water flow.

Filter
Something which keeps debris and sediment from going past it. In drip systems this is a requirement. Every filter is rated by the screen or disc opening size. How small something has to be to get through it. Common for drip is using a 155 mesh rated screen or disc.
Check the filter section and you can see the difference between screens and disc's.