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Air Compressor

Discussion in 'Do It Yourself (Not Computer-Related)' started by silverado4, Nov 12, 2011.

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  1. silverado4

    silverado4 Thread Starter

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    I have what is supposed to be a 100 psi air compressor. I need to blow out my water sprinkler lines with a higher psi so all the water comes out. I would like to get a stand up compressor, but would like the best for putting out pressure and to hold volume in the tank. I'm looking for about 150-200 psi. I think this would be enough. I think my current air compressor is only doing about 85-90. When I get to my furthest sprinkler head, it hardly comes up. I have to make sure all the water is out for winter. Thanks
     
  2. wowzer

    wowzer

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    What is the tank size of your current compressor?
    I would think 85-90 psi would be plenty if it will hold that for a short time, assuming you don't have a million leaks in the system.

    A compressor that will make and hold 150-200 psi would be a huge commercial unit...very expensive... and way over kill.

    Another thing you can do is blow some non-toxic/RV anti-freeze thru while you're at it.
     
  3. Koot

    Koot

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    I'm not sure why you think you need to purge or remove all the water from your irrigation pipes. That is definitely not necessary. You just don't want the pipes to be 'filled' with water (especially under pressure) so when the water freezes the expanded frozen water breaks/splits the pipes. As long as the pipes are not filled (fully taking up the entire interior volume of the pipe) with water, they won't break/split. Also, the reason the furthest sprinkler head barely comes up is because all the only heads on that particular zone are leaking the air pressure. If you somehow blank-off all but the 'lowest' head (due to gravity water will naturally seek the lowest level), then you will be able to remove most all the water using air pressure.

    Don't forget about the pipes that feed the solenoid valves (pipes that are upstream of the solenoid valves), because those pipes are the ones that have pressurized (full volume) water in them. I assume you are turning off the water pressure to the entire irrigation system and then opening up the solenoid valves to release the [water] pressure. Water-filled pipes that are 'under pressure' should be your main concern...
     
  4. silverado4

    silverado4 Thread Starter

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    No the "bleed" valves are closed for the winter because I use my air compressor I have at the I think they call it the back flow. This way the air goes "through" the solenoids. The last head doesn't come up to high because there is not enough air pressure coming to it from my air compressor. It's a standard size tank that is most common on wheels for home use.
     
  5. pumpman032180

    pumpman032180

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    Your problem is multi-faceted. First, you are trying to fill some pretty big water lines compared to the size of the air line from your compressor. Second, your losing air at the sprinkler heads when they open up thus reducing pressure at the far ends of the lines. Third, due to the larger pipe size you would need a comprressor with a huge CFM output. CFM is the cubic feet per minute the machine can generate and most small home compressors do not put out a lof of CFM which is why some fill tires quicker than others or run air tools better, etc. I agree with the earlier post that the lines don't need to be completely drained as long as the water doesn't fill the line enough that freezing and expansion would break the piping. Your best bet if you really feel you need to blow thru that last sprinkler head more is to close the sprinkler heads prior to that point or set something on them so they won't pop up and bleed off the air, then put pressure to the line and get as much water out from the furthest point as possible. Assuming this is the lowest point that will be the best you can do to bleed the lines out without getting a compressor that puts out more CFM. Hope this helps.
     
  6. hewee

    hewee

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    Take sprinkler head off far end or lower end and hookup a wet and dry vacuum and suck the water out.
     
  7. Koot

    Koot

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    I still can't figure out why silverado4 feels the need to remove the [less-than-full and non-pressurized] water from the pipes.
     
  8. hewee

    hewee

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    Thin pipes and lots of rocks in the ground. Seen that on one job sites in the East Bay and ground moving because of the wet clay being like a sponge the rocks cut into the thin water lines.
    This was not because of the winter or cold but the soil and where it was at where no homes should of been build because of water trouble.
     
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