Rain Bird's commitment to The Intelligent Use of Water™ extends beyond our products. Today, we partner with contractors, designers and municipalities to provide solutions, education, and training to help achieve near-term and long-term water resource management goals.
Rain Bird defines “sustainability” as operating our business in a way that demonstrates environmental stewardship, while continuing to develop products, services, and education that promote The Intelligent Use of Water™.
Ready to start saving water, time, and money?
Rain Bird makes it easy with 5 tips for responsible irrigation.
Survey & Observe: Every landscape has its own unique requirements. Set the project up for success with custom solutions tailored to the environment.
Identify and Understand Landscape Soil Composition —The unique soil composition on a property is an important factor in determining how fast and how often water should be applied to the plant material.
- Recording the soil composition is important for systems like Rain Bird IQ4 Central Control. Soil type is required data for site specific weather based irrigation adjustments.
Choose the Right Plants — Create a beautiful, sustainable landscape using plants native to the area. Check out this site report for Barrel Springs Elementary School in Palmdale, California to see how.
Add More Mulch if Necessary — Mulch helps with drainage, encourages root development and improves soil by making nutrients more available to plants. Mulch also insulates plants in winter months, while cooling the soil and reducing water use during the summer.
Check the Water — Assess the quality of water as well as the system pressure and flow. Poor water quality will clog components. Low pressure reduces flow and inhibits product performance. High pressure increases flow and creates misting and fogging.
- Low Pressure – Rain Bird is the only irrigation company that manufactures pumps. Customize the pump station to perfectly match the site's parameters and needs.
- High Pressure – Rain Bird's PRS Spray Bodies are designed to deliver consistent outlet pressure for optimal flow rates that reduce misting and fogging — resulting in the best possible performance for even coverage and water savings.
- Poor Water Quality – Rain Bird offers mainline filtration systems to refine the water at the source. Secondary filtration is always necessary for projects with drip. Check out Rain Bird’s newest Flow Indicating Basket Filter for one compact solution that provides flow measurement, filtration, and pressure regulation to help make drip maintenance easier.
Assess the Topography — Are there any noteworthy slopes or basins that need to be specifically addressed to prevent water runoff or pooling?
- Rain Bird's portfolio of emission devices features Seal-A-Matic (SAM) check valves to meet the needs of changing elevation, to eliminate low head drainage.
- Xeri-Bug™ with Check Valve (XBCV) is a pressure-compensating emitter that prevents low head drainage by holding back 10 feet (3 m) of water — the highest in the industry. It’s a smart solution for slopes, elevated zones, potted plants and more.
- Rain Bird's XFS-CV offers better uniformity and helps to prevent water drainage at the low-point in the zone. With a pure copper chip inside every emitter, XFS-CV Dripline also offers the industry's most effective root intrusion protection.
Take Micro-climates Into Account — The same species of plant will need different amounts of water in shade versus full sun.
Plan & Design: Design and select products according to site findings. Some water districts provide exemptions to water restrictions for highly efficient irrigation systems. Check with local water providers to see if exemptions apply in the area.
Identify Your Hydrozones —Cluster plants with similar water requirements on the same valve zone.
- Adding a SMRT-Y Soil Moisture Sensor will also prevent watering until plants need it.
- Always make sure turf, ground-cover, shrubs and trees remain on separate valves.
Match Irrigation to Soil —Heavy clays will pool or cause runoff more easily where sandy soils could take longer for lateral water movement. Choose an emission device that matches the soil’s needs.
- Rain Bird's Point Source Emitter Calculation Tool will calculate the daily Plant Water Requirement (PWR), provide the number of emitters required to irrigate each individual plant, and then suggest the run times for a point source drip irrigation project.
- Rain Bird’s 1300 Series Bubblers provide a controlled, gentle umbrella of water for irrigating trees, flowers, and shrub areas.
- Rain Bird's R-VAN Rotary Nozzles feature multi-stream technology, creating uniform coverage at lower precipitation rates to optimize water absorption in a variety of applications.
Recycled Water —is a great way to save! Be sure to use products designed specifically to stand up to the harsh chemicals found in recycled water.
- Only Rain Bird offers end-to-end solutions for reclaimed water applications. To learn more, visit our Rethink Reclaimed webpage.
Retain Water Onsite —Storm-water runoff pollutes and alters nearby lakes, rivers, streams, and oceans. Ultimately, this affects our natural resources and drinking water.
- Rain Bird’s grates, basins, and accessories can help manage water run-off and surface drainage for virtually any residential, commercial, or municipal site.
Know your Flows —Different emission devices require different flow rates. Undersized irrigation materials (Pipe, Meters, Pumps, Valves, etc.) restrict flow and reduce pressure. Make sure product flow parameters are taken into consideration for optimal performance and water savings.
Design & Build: Rain Bird products make precise watering simple. Never underestimate how much time, money, and resources can be saved with the right tools.
Use Targeted Drip Irrigation —Apply the right amount of water directly to the root zone of each plant and save up to 50% more water than traditional overhead irrigation.
Control Pressure and Flow —Site pressures fluctuate throughout a 24 hour period. The only way to ensure nozzles are always getting the correct pressure for optimal performance, is to regulate pressure at every head.
- Rain Bird offers a patented pressure regulating technology called Pressure Regulating Stem (PRS), designed specifically to keep performance at optimal levels (30 or 45 PSI) regardless of varying inlet pressure. On a system with 70 PSI, regulating your spray head pressure to 30 PSI can save a gallon of water per minute per spray head!
Overcome Wind Drift —Even small amounts of wind can cause water to drift and evaporate. Large water droplets offer greater wind resistance and help save water on gusty days.
- Rain Bird's HE-VAN and R-VAN nozzles paired with Rain Bird's pressure regulating 1800® Series and RD1800 Series spray heads dramatically reduce water loss from misting.
Eliminate Erosion —Erosion is the result of water being applied faster than the soil can absorb it. Common causes are: slopes, clay soils, improper irrigation selection, lack of check valves and broken equipment.
- Rain Bird controllers offer automatic cycle and soak. This feature eliminates run off by dividing the total irrigation runtime into shorter cycles, allowing the water to soak into the soil before the next cycle.
- Rain Bird offers built-in check valves in our sprays, rotors, dripline, and drip emitters to prevent low point drainage.
Irrigation Scheduling: Rain Bird controllers can be set to irrigate only at certain times and under specific conditions. Easily adjust controllers to the exact amount of water needed for a healthy landscape.
Avoid Irrigating in the Middle of the Day —Always water in the morning when the sun is low, winds are calm, temperatures are cool, and leaves have a chance to dry out and the chance of losing water to evaporation is low ("Watering Tips | US EPA").
Follow Local Rules —Check with local water providers for the days and times to water a property and avoid costly fines. Using drip irrigation meets the standards for most municipalities.
Don’t Water Within 48 Hours of Rain —Plants don't need water within 48 hours of natural rainfall. Use a rain sensor to prevent or delay irrigation during and after rain.
- Install the WR2-48 to automatically prevent irrigation for 48 hours after rain.
Water Only When a Site Demands It —Rain Bird's WiFi enabled controllers and IQ4 water management software use weather data to adjust irrigation so the landscape gets the exact amount of water it needs.
- Rain Bird Mobile App or IQ4 Automatic ET-Based adjustments.
Protect Against Unauthorized Users —Guard the system against unauthorized use with Rain Bird's IQ4 Pin-Code protection for controllers and Central Control. Pin codes can protect from watering at the wrong time by making sure only those who know how to properly schedule irrigation are the ones authorized to make program changes.
Audit & Identify: Make sure your system is operating at maximum efficiency.
Identify and Repair All Leaks and Broken Equipment —The EPA estimates that a leak the thickness of a dime can cause water waste of 6,300 gallons per month! (“Fix a Leak Week | US EPA”) Products are available to help you detect and fix leaks before they become a costly problem.
Locate and Eliminate Breaks/Leaks —Typical irrigation events take place while we are sleeping. This can make it hard to know when there is a break in your system. Regular audits are necessary to locate these issues.
- Flow Sensors are the eyes and ears of the system, working with the controller to monitor conditions with a high level of precision and accuracy.
- Flow-Indicating Basket Filters allow checkups on drip zone performance with just a glance in the valve box.
- Rain Bird's Flow-Shield™ feature, available in the RD1800 Series spray bodies, creates a high indicator stream that the nozzle is missing or damaged so maintenance crews know repair is needed.
Only Water Things that Grow —As the landscape grows and matures, it changes shapes. It's important the irrigation changes with it. Consider switching heads blocked by plant material to drip, or use select nozzles that offer maximum flexibility to prevent runoff and overspray.
- Rain Bird's HE-VAN or High-Efficiency variable arc nozzles deliver water with precision. The edges of these variable arc nozzles can be set just shy of 180 degrees when installed against hardscape to reduce overspray and runoff.
- The Rain Bird® 1800-RETRO is the easiest and fastest way to convert a conventional spray zone to a low-volume irrigation zone.
Automate Reports —Utilize diagnostic features on commercial controllers that will check system health and send automatic incident reports.
- Rain Bird’s IQ4 Central Control Systems help monitor, control, automate and adjust water usage with any internet connected smart device from anywhere in the world.
- Controllers enable users to manage the amount of water an irrigation system uses based on the needs of the plants as well as compare water usage from one irrigation cycle to the next.
Add More Mulch if Necessary —Mulch helps with drainage, encourages root development and improves soil by making nutrients more available to plants. Mulch insulates plants in winter months, and keeps the soil cool and moist during the summer.