Sprinkler System Water Pressure too High? Causes and Fixes

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With a good sprinkler system, you can sit back and relax while the sprinklers do their job. But, did you know how much water do they use in order to water the grass and plants? That’s right, the answer is a lot!

And, the situation only gets worse if the water pressure inside the sprinkler goes higher than anticipated. Then, sprinklers will use even more water and that’s going to be a problem.

So, what is causing this kind of thing and what can you do to stop it? Let’s find out together.

Sprinkler system water pressure too high

Sprinkler Water Pressure too High – Causes

There are plenty of things that regulate the pressure when it comes to the sprinkler system. But, when sprinklers have high water pressure, then your lawn will be soaked with water which is never a good thing.

Therefore, here are the causes of high water pressure inside sprinklers.

  • Faulty sprinkler heads
  • Malfunctioning valves
  • Pipe Blockage

Now, let’s discuss this a bit more.

1. Faulty Sprinkler Heads

The first sigh you’ll notice of high water pressure inside your sprinkler system is a soaked lawn. There will be puddles everywhere and uneven water distribution on the grass.

The problem is definitely located at the sprinkler heads. Namely, if a sprinkler head is old or broken in some way that can result in either loss or increase of the water pressure.

In your case, the pressure is increased and you have a flooded lawn.

So, what can you do? Well, it isn’t always easy to inspect sprinkler heads and determine whether they are too old, just malfunctioning or not properly installed.

It might be best to call a plumber and let him do the job properly. This is quite important since sprinkler heads are the main part of every sprinkler system. Simply put, sprinkler heads are regulating how much water will leave the sprinkler system. Also, they are in charge when it comes to water pressure.

Sprinkler Water Pressure too High

In most cases, you will need to change sprinkler heads that are malfunctioning since repairing is not always possible. That’s why when you notice that your sprinklers are operating at high water pressure, it will most likely mean that you have to replace the heads.

To prevent this kind of problem, you can clean the heads from time to time. There might be dirt build-up on some heads that can lower the pressure or make your sprinkler heads to malfunction.

2. Malfunctioning Valves

The second most common cause of high water pressure inside a sprinkler system is located at the valve. Now, you must have a valve that is regulating the water pressure for the water supply line that the sprinkler system is connected on.

If that valve is not operating properly, you might experience a significant change in water pressure. This means that the water pressure could either go up or down depending on the problem.

So, if the valve is old or just broken, the pressure inside a sprinkler system will definitely go up which will result in a sudden increase in water pressure. That will later result in having a soaked lawn full of puddles since water is unevenly distributed all over the yard.


To fix this kind of problem, you need to locate the valve that regulates the water flow inside your sprinkler system. If the valve is not screwed tight enough, water pressure will be too high. On the other hand, if the valve is loose, water pressure will be low.

Next, you will need to determine which problem are you facing, and deal with it accordingly. If the valve is not screwed tight enough, then you should just tighten it with a screwdriver.

In some cases, the valve could be old and rusty which will result in high water pressure as well. If that happens, then you need to change the valve. This is a serious thing and it needs to be done as soon as possible. Having faulty valves can result in serious damage to your plumbing.

3. Pipe Blockage

This is not such a common cause of high water pressure in the sprinkler system, but, it could happen to anyone. Now, what exactly happens inside the pipe that supplies the system with water?

Well, water comes from the main supply line through the pipe and then it reaches the sprinkler system. If the pipe is clogged, that will result in loss of water pressure, right? Well, that doesn’t have to be the case every time.

If your sprinkler system is connected with your water supply line with two or more pipes, then if one is clogged, the pressure will increase. For this to happen, one set of sprinkler heads will not have water at all, or the pressure will be significantly lower.


So, when one pipe is clogged, then all the water is distributed in the other pipe which results in a sudden water pressure increase. Therefore, you will have 100% water distributed in only one pipe as the other pipe is blocked with some kind of build-up.

In order to fix this problem and get rid of the blockage, you simply need to unclog it with a baking soda and vinegar solution. The clog is most likely caused by mineral build-up that was accumulating in the pipe for a long time.

Also, you will need to detach your sprinkler system off of the main water supply line in order to unclog the pipe. The last thing you need is to mess up a perfectly fine sprinkler system.

Conclusion: Sprinkler System Water Pressure Too High

As we can see, having a sprinkler system requires you to deal with a bit of problem from time to time. If you live in an area where the water is hard, then you will most likely face a clogging problem. However, if you have faulty sprinkler heads or your valve is malfunctioning, then a repair is needed. 

In every case, the problem is solvable and you will have normal pressure inside your sprinkler system once again.