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A person applying green adhesive to the end of a PVC pipe

Overview

A fixed pipe irrigation system is a great way to keep larger lawns watered. We'll show you how to install a pop-up sprinkler system with PVC piping in just a few steps. 

Steps

1Dig a trench around the perimeter

Work out where you want your sprinklers to go, making sure the arc for each one overlaps the area of lawn they're covering.  Dig a trench around the perimeter of the lawn and calculate how many sprinklers you will need.

A person digging a trench with a shovel

2Cut PVC pipes to length

Cut the PVC pipes to the correct length. Lay out the entire system so you can make sure you have the correct layout. When you are happy, come back and reattach everything using the primer and glue.
A person cutting a length of PVC pipe using a hacksaw

3Insert T pieces at sprinkler positions

In the middle section we have a half circle spray. Insert a T piece joining the pipes together. Put a riser in there and attach a pop up sprinkler in the middle. In the corner we are using a plain elbow and a small piece of pipe to attach a threaded T junction. There is also an elbow with a thread in the top that you could use.
A person joining two lengths of PVC pipe with a T-joint

4Install the solenoid valve at the water source

At the water source, put a T piece in and run a pipe off to attach to the solenoid valve. This valve controls the flow of water to the watering system.  Continue to cut pipe and fit the fittings around the trench.
A person holding a solenoid valve

5Prime and glue the joins

When you are happy with the positions of the sprinklers, you can prime each joint to clean it and use a rider to make sure they are sitting vertically. Apply the glue to both surfaces on the pipe and put your joints together. The glue sets quickly so make sure they are sitting vertically.
A person applying green adhesive to the end of a PVC pipe

6Attach the sprinklers

When everything is in place, flush the system to get rid of any dirt. Attach the small risers to each pop up sprinkler unit and screw them into the joins. 

A person attaching a pop-up sprinkler to a PVC pipe

7Backfill the trench

Now, using your spade, backfill the trench with soil to cover up the whole watering system. 

A person back-filling a trench around a pop-up sprinkler

8Check the system is working properly

Finally, turn on your sprinkler system to make sure that it's working correctly.
Water spraying from a pop-up sprinkler

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Health & Safety

Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.

When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.