Q: Why is soaker hose a good source of watering?
A: Soaker hose is an easy system to install and maintain. This system is environmentally safe, manufactured with recycled material and operates at a low pressure, conserving our water resources. It allows water to go directly into the soil, instead of on the plants, which can cause mold and/or disease. Soaker hose allows for consistent watering to plants, enhancing homes and gardens to grow food and save money. The convenience of this no hassle system leaves more time for other things in life.
Q: What is the difference between the 580, 700 and 820 soaker hose?
A: The numbers indicate the outside diameter (o.d.) of the hose, the smaller the number, the smaller the outside diameter. A larger diameter hose produces less friction. The 820 size allows more water to reach the end of the hose quicker, especially for longer lengths. .580 can be run in lengths up to 100’ .700 can be run in lengths up to 150’ .820 can be run in lengths up to 250’
Q: What is the difference between a pressure regulator and a flow disk?
A: A pressure regulator reduces the operating pressure or force of water which helps to alleviate spraying or holes in the soaker hose. Our systems require a pressure regulator to alleviate malfunction of the system.
A flow disc helps reduces the volume or amount of water flowing through the hose or pipe. Flow is measured in gallons per minute (gpm) or hour (gph). A flow disk helps provide a more equal distribution of water from end to end.
Q: What is the water pressure of my system?
A: You may contact your water department for the PSI of your water (pounds per square inch). Average household pressure is around 40 to 60 PSI and well / pump systems may be higher. Using a pressure regulator ensures the pressure remains low to alleviate system malfunction. You can purchase a pressure gauge, if you don’t already have one. If your pressure exceeds 60 psi, you will need a more heavy duty pressure regulator. Typically, soaker hose regulators can only withstand an incoming pressure of about 60 psi.
Q: If a hose malfunctions, such as a split or holes that spray, is this repairable?
A: Yes, but most likely the pressure is too high, creating these two most common malfunctions. A pressure regulator is the first recommendation to alleviate further malfunction. For areas of damage, large holes or splits, cut out the damaged hose and connect the two pieces back together with a compression coupling. If a hole is small enough, you might be able to use a ¼” goof plug to plug up the hole.
Q: How long should my system run to provide adequate watering?
A: Each system will be different based on the region you live, the type of soil you have, what you are growing and the size of soaker hose you are using. A warmer climate will cause water evaporation (option: cover hose with mulch). Soil type can be classified by taking a handful of soil and squeezing it. If soil clings firmly together and forms shapes, it’s clay. If soil holds together, but easily breaks apart, it’s loam and if breaks into tiny grains, it’s sandy. These soil textures absorb water differently: in clay, water expands the farthest outward and then down, in sand water expands least outward and farthest downward, and in loamy soils you have the most consistent in outward and down. To determine the GPM of the soaker hose please see our Specifications Chart to determine your water output.
Helpful Hint: One gardener trick for adequate watering. Insert a wooden dowel reaching the root area, then water, based on the above facts. Once watering is completed, pull the dowel from the soil and check, if the dowel has water saturation at the base this will confirm water has reached the root area. Letting you know if watering time should be increased or decreased.
Q: What type of fittings do I use?
A: Compression fittings are recommended, just be sure that you have the right size to fit your hose. If you are using .580 soaker hose, then you need .580 compression fittings and .580 mainline poly tubing. The same goes for the other sizes. Don’t ever purchase fittings from another store that say they are ½”, find out what the o.d. is. This is very important. (½” barb fittings will fit our .800 soaker hose and our .700 mainline poly tubing.)
Q: How do I use compression fittings?
A: Compression fittings fit over the outside of soaker hose or poly tubing. Simply rock back and forth while pushing the fitting on. Once on, the fitting will not come off. If need be, you might be able to take the fittings off, by gently rocking back and forth while trying to remove. (Caution: this could cause the hose to break off in the fitting.)
A: Soaker hose can be used on the top of the ground surface, or covered with a layer of mulch (recommended) for best results also decreasing water evaporation. Watering before sunrise also helps in this matter. You can bury the hose up to 4” deep if you wish, but this makes it harder to monitor and can lead to damage from roots or digging.
Q: Can a soaker hose be run up or down a hill?
A: This is not recommended. The best installation for this is horizontally across the slope, with the water source at the top of the slope. For multiple lines, horizontally across the slope, a female hose end attached to a male threaded tee with a flow disc is needed for each individual line, preventing water gathering at the lower end of the hose run. Flow discs replace the rubber washer in a female fitting. Rain Barrel Soaker Hose must be on flat ground.
Q: Can soaker hose be used to water the lawn?
A: It can be used on the surface for spot watering. Burying soaker hose for lawns is not recommended, therefore not warranted for this purpose. Roots can grow in to the hose, causing it to clog and not work properly.
Q: Can soaker hose be used for foundation stabilization work?
A: In some clay soils, when the soil dries out, it tends to shift and crack causing foundation and structure damage. The goal of a foundation repair preventive maintenance watering program is to maintain a constant level of moisture in the soil under the house and foundation. The best way to water a foundation is to place a soaker hose from one to two feet from the edge of the foundation. Placing the hose a short distance from the foundation allows the water to soak into the soil evenly. The hose should not be placed against the foundation. While soaker hose assists with this application it is not its intended purpose.
Q: Can I use well water or water pumped from a pond or lake?
A: Well water typically contains debris and minerals that can cause clogging. Using specified filters, such as 200 mesh filter or Calcium Filter, can help prevent some clogging.
Pond or lake water is not recommended as sand and algae are also culprits of system malfunction and clogging.
A: Calcium filters can be used for soaker hoses or any drip irrigation system. White residue or deposits on a hose can indicate there is an excess amount of calcium in your water. By using a calcium filter, you can greatly reduce blockage caused by calcium. Depending on the hardness of your water, calcium filters should be changed once a year.
Q: Why does soaker hose performance decrease over time?
A: If you notice your soaker hose output diminishing or uneven weeping in areas, your hose could be clogging. Make sure you have required filters for your water. You can also do a pressure purge to help resolve this issue.
A: To begin this process, remove all flow or pressure devices (regulators, flow disc). Turn your faucet all the way on for 1 minute then off for 1 minute. Repeat this cycle 3 times. At the end of the third cycle remove the end caps and flush out the system for about 3 minutes. Reinstall the caps, pressure regulator and flow disks.
Helpful Hint: If possible, walking on or squeezing the soaker hose (especially the area of concern) will assist with breaking the buildup from the hose wall to push out during this process.
Q: How long of a run can my soaker hose go?
A: Mr. Soaker Hose has 4 different sizes. 580 can have individual runs up to 100’, but not exceed a total of 500’ from one water source. 700 can have individual runs up to 150’, but not to exceed a total of 500’ from one water source. 820 can have individual runs up to 250’in one length, but not to exceed a total of 500’ from one water source. ¼” mini soaker hose can have individual runs not exceeding 30’. If you have an individual run at its maximum length, it must have an end cap on it. You may not add anything else after this point. You have to come off of your mainline poly somewhere else if you want to add more hose.
Q: How do I winterize my system?
A: In areas of hard a freeze, drain all water from the hose. Unscrew the female end from the outside faucet. Remove all end caps to allow for drainage. If possible, use air pressure to blow out all water from the system. Automatic drain valves are also available. You can also take up your system, if you have used female hose ends on your rows. Just unscrew them, roll them up and put them away. Water left in any fittings will freeze and crack. All timers, regulators, filters and backflows should be removed and stored in above freezing temperatures.
Q: What is the difference between drip system and a soaker hose system?
A: Both systems are designed to water plants at a low pressure. Drip systems place water precisely to an individual plant or area. Soaker hose weeps water the entire length of the hose, making it perfect for any gardening application.
Q: Can drip emitters and soaker hose be used together?
A: You can, but we do not recommend using them together, as each applies water at a different rate, and trying to balance each one of these to ensure each plant or section receives the right amount of water can be challenging. In-line valves can help with this, regulating water in a specified area.
Q: My drip emitters are clogged?
A: Some emitters can be taken apart and cleaned. There could also be something in your line or in a fitting. If that is the case, you will have to remove fittings and flush your system out. White buildup indicates calcium deposits from hard water. In this case remove the drippers and soak for 20 minutes, or even over night in some CLR or even vinegar. If none of these work, it’s time to replace them.
Q: What type of warranty does my soaker hose have?
A: Soaker Hose has a 3 year limited warranty against defects in workmanship and material under “normal use”. This means it is used with low pressure for irrigation, with a pressure regulator of 10-25 psi.
Q: How do I determine what size soaker hose I have?
A: Soaker hose is measured by the o.d., “outside diameter” Our .580 has a yellow stripe. The .700 has a red stripe. The .820 has a green stripe, and our Rain Barrel Soaker Hose has a purple stripe.
Q: Why use Mr. Soaker Hose products?
A: Here are a few reasons:
· Soaker hose systems are easy to install through color coordinated soaker hose and components.
· Bulk soaker hose allows you to customize a watering system to fit your garden.
· 3 year limited warranty against defects in workmanship and material under “normal use”.
· Customer service after your purchase; website references for specifications; frequently asked questions; and videos to assist with installation, along with installation designs.
Please contact us with any additional comments or questions, as we would like to hear from you