Save Some Bucks with DIY Landscaping Repair

Nov 13th, 2007 | By | Category: DIY, House
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DSCN0608I almost passed out when my landscape maintenance guy told me it would cost $300 for labor and about $150 for parts to fix my sprinkler system. He wasn’t sure exactly what the problem was, so his solution was to swap out all three valves. The part that got me was when he said he wasn’t sure what the problem was. Well, I wasn’t about to pay someone $450 just to test a theory, so I started doing my own investigation. What turned up first was a leak in the sprinkler line. Apparently the original installers didn’t use enough clue and the PVC pipe in one end of a T connector just came loose and was squirting water everywhere. I set out to repair that first.

Cable Saw

I used a 26″ PVC cable saw to cut the other end of the pipe that was still attached to the line. The cable saw makes it easier to cut the pipe while it is still laying in the dirt trench. The left side of the PVC pipe just slid out (on left of photo above) from the T connector because the glue either disintegrated or was never used. To repair it, I needed to re-glue the left end into the T connector and then used a standard couple schedule 40 to connect the other end. I used the original PVC pipe, so all I needed to buy was the couple and the clue (pictured below).

Red Hot Blue GlueThe blue glue needs to be spread inside the couple and on the outside of the pvc pipe that is to be inserted inside the couple. It’s a pretty blue color so that you can see that you are using enough. This was obviously a step that the other guys neglected to see. The pipe needs to be fitted within 30 seconds of applying the glue, and you should see a ring of blue glue along the seam of the pipe once it’s connected (photo below).

The glue only needs about 10 minutes of setting up before it’s ready to go, although 24 hours is needed for complete setting.

Adding the Glue Pipe Repair

So that was pretty much it. Total cost was about $4, and it only took me about 15 minutes to do. That’s only the first step. I still need to finish my investigation to fix the leaky valves.

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