sprinkler on a kitchen garden

Best Sprinkler heads: 2019 Buying Guide and Comprehensive reviews

Hand watering your lawn or garden is always a therapeutic and relaxing activity. However, watering a bigger lawn manually can turn into a challenging task. Of course, with a watering can or a garden hose you’ll have to ensure you don’t over water or under water some sections.

That’s where sprinkler heads come in. An excellent sprinkler head helps to uniformly distribution of water across your garden or yard. This is an essential aspect as it directly affects the quality and health of your plants.

There are quite many sprinkler heads in the market. I will provide you with an insightful guide and comprehensive reviews that’ll help you pick the best sprinkler head.

The Top 10 Best Sprinkler Heads Comparison

Sprinkler HeadTypeWatering Area
Melnor XT Mini-TurboSpray3,900 Square FeetRead Review
Rain Bird 25PJDACImpact5,200 Square FeetRead Review
Orbit 55662 Voyager IIPop-Up/Spray2,123 Square FeetRead Review
Orbit 62100 Yard EnforcerImpact1,600 Square FeetRead Review
Hunter PGP UltraRotor2,123 Square FeetRead Review
Melnor XT TurboOscillating4,200 Square FeetRead Review
Irrigator Pro 525023Spray5,026 Square FeetRead Review
Lawn Sprinkler Automatic 360Spray3,600 Square FeetRead Review
GARDENA ZoomMaxxSpray2,300 Square FeetRead Review
Rain Bird 2045A Maxi-PawImpact/Pop-Up1,590 Square FeetRead Review

What Is a Sprinkler Head?

A sprinkler head is the outlet of a garden or lawn sprinkler that discharges water to irrigate plants. In most cases, it is made up of a valve, nozzle, and a body. As is the case, the body is the one that provides a base while the nozzles sprinkle water.

10 Best Sprinkler Heads Reviews

1. Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler

With the Melnor XT, you can water a medium to large size lawn of up to 4,200 square feet.

It is fitted with an in-built zoom/flow control dial to enable you to control the coverage area with precision. With the zoom feature, you can zoom in to water a small nursery or zoom all the way out to cover a large section of the lawn.

What’s more, it is equipped with TwinTouch controls. Thay help you regulate the width and range of the watering pattern. This is a great feature to avoid spraying water on unwanted sections such as your driveway or corridors.

You may have been a victim of forgetting to switch off your water only to run into a swamped-up garden. The Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler takes care of this with its mechanical water timer which does turn off the water automatically after running for 1-120 minutes. So, you don’t have to set up alarms or worry about overwatering your crops.

Lastly, the sprinkler has an Infinity Turbo precision motor that provides smooth operation at both low and high pressure.

To ensure you get adequate water distribution, the Melnor XT features a large diameter water tube. This tube helps spray the water farther and in a more even pattern from the 20 precision nozzles.

Pros

  • Built-in mechanical water timer.
  • Fitted water control system is great for customizing the region you want to spray with precision.
  • Easy to operate.
  • Silent

Cons

  • Its plastic build is not durable.

2. Rain Bird 25PJDAC Brass Impact Sprinkler

One feature that stands out from this impact sprinkler is its build. The Rain Bird 25PJDAC is made of brass, bronze, and stainless steel which assures you many years of superior service.

The impact sprinkler is simple to tweak around and supports a full 360degree or part circle 20 to 340 degrees pattern of watering. What this means is that for a kitchen garden or a lawn the Rain Bird 25PJDAC will still perform a decent job.

Additionally, it features a straight-through water flow design. With this outstanding feature, you are rest assured that the sprinkler will still deliver excellent results even when using dirty water.

It also has a deflector flap that helps you tweak the stream span from 20 to 41’ radius. In addition, there is a diffuser screw. With a simple turn of the screw you can switch between small water droplets to larger ones. With that, you can easily adjust the water pattern and keep water wastage in control.

Still, on the Rain Bird 25PJDAC list of customizable coverage patterns. You can opt between the full circle (360 degrees) or part circle coverage (20 – 340 degrees). Under the part circle coverage, you get an almost endless pattern adjustment. That’ll help you prevent side splashing onto walkways and walls.

Pros

  • Durable and sturdy build.
  • It has a range of customizable coverage patterns.
  • Simple to set up and operate.

Cons

  • Emit an impact sound that may be a nuisance to some people.
  • It doesn’t come with a manual.

3. Orbit 55662 Voyager II Professional

The Orbit 55662 Voyager II ranks among one of the cheapest sprinkler options in the market. Nonetheless, this sprinkler does pack some decent features and its worth every cent.

The Orbit 55662 is fitted with an adjustable 40-80 ft spray diameter. It makes it an excellent fit for medium to large lawns or gardens.

Next on, its swing arch. It can be tweaked spot on using its adjustment key, giving you a swing of 40 to 360 degrees.

Also, the sprinkler comes with a tree of nozzles to help you tweak the flow rate.

Another fantastic feature of this sprinkler is its enclosed body design which prevents clogs from debris and dirt. Besides that, the Orbit 55662 sprinkler head is also equipped with a filter that keeps dirt out. This means that you can use dirty water to irrigate your lawn without fear that the sprinkler head will get clogged.

And don’t worry too much about cleaning it as the process is simple and straightforward. All it takes is a simple twist to remove the filter, clean it, and resume back to normal operations.

Moving on to matters water wastage. The Voyager II does have lower precipitation levels compared to the old-school pop-up. This will help you reduce runoff and cut back on the amount of water that goes to waste, more so if your garden is slanted.

Lastly, the Orbit 55662 gear drive sprinklers are designed to operate silently. So you won’t be disrupted with the click, click sounds common in most impact heads. Additionally, the gear drive is water powered and water lubricated assuring you of years of excellent operation without breakdown.

Pros

  • Silent operation.
  • Simple to install and customize.
  • It comes with an adjustment key for instant tweaking of its swing arch.
  • Has a decent coverage.
  • An excellent build.

Cons

  • Lower precipitation levels mean areas close to the sprinkler can be under-watered.

4. Orbit 62100 Yard Enforcer Motion Activated Sprinkler

The Orbit, 62100 Yard Enforcer, is a classic of killing two birds with one stone. Not only does this sprinkler head spray water, it also functions as a pest deterrent. That’s also where it gets the Yard Enforcer moniker.

This motion activated sprinkler combines water, action, and sound. It uses these to protect your garden or lawn not only from pests but also larger animals such as dear. What’s more, it does so without harming the animals.

Its unique detection feature features a motion sensor with a 120-degree viewing angle. It has three modes of activation. You can opt for the always-onmode for 24/7 protection, night mode for protection during night hours or day mode for protection during the daytime.

You can angle the motion sensor downwards to detect and deter small animals or upwards to identify bigger animals that are up to 40 feet away.

Its smart sensing technology ensures the Orbit 62100 sprays water and stops pests and animals without wastages on water or energy.

The sprinkler features a 35-foot regulatable setting. It allows you to customize the spray patterns and coverage area. Besides that, it has a 30-minute timed watering setting that enables you to set the times you want your lawn or garden to be watered.

You can also expand its spray area by connecting more impact sprinklers (sold separately). This is via the dual flow-through ports controlled by the valve.

I’m not done yet. The sprinkler is powered by 4 AA alkaline batteries and boasts of over 7,500 activation cycles ensuring your garden or lawn is safe at all times.

Finally, its build comprises of metal dual step spike and brass hose connection for stability and durability.

Pros

  • It is equipped with simple and easily customizable features.
  • Durable.
  • The battery compartment is waterproof.
  • A sturdy metal spike to get into the ground.

Cons

  • Finding spare parts in case of breakage can be tricky.

5. Hunter PGP Ultra Rotor Sprinkler Head

If you want to have total control over watering your lawn or garden, then the Hunter PGP Ultra is what you should go for.

This model from Hunter’s is shipped alongside a unique selection of five hunter PGP ultra-heads with an adjustable arc and a 2.5 nozzle. That’ll give you exceptional control over the spray distance and pattern. Still, on the same, each ultra-head has its adjustable tool for easy tweaking of the spray pattern.

Well, similar to most of the pop-up rotor heads in the market you get the option of tweaking the arc settings which range from 50 degrees to 360 degrees.

Its spray distance starts from 22ft and can be extended up to 52ft which are quite impressive numbers for a pop-up rotor head.

Additionally, its flow rate ranges between 0.5 and 14.1 GPM (Gallons Per Minute).

Next on, the Hunter PGP features the gear drive technology with an improved dirty water tolerance. This helps prevent jamming in the sprinkler heads due to congestion of dirt and debris.

Setting up these sprinkler heads is a straightforward task as each head comes with nozzles already fitted on them. Besides, there is always a handy (packed alongside the sprinkler heads) to guide you through.

Pros

  • It comes with a manual for easy installation and operation.
  • Simple to customize its spray pattern and distance.

Cons

  • Tweaking the spray angle can be tricky.

6. Melnor XT Mini-Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler

Dubbed the world’s most adjustable and innovative sprinkler, this great product from Melnor comes with excellent features.

Like the Melnor XT Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler this sprinkler has smooth operating tabs. The tabs make it easy to water your lawn or kitchen garden.

The tabs help you regulate the watering pattern from 10ft to 75ft. This allows you to water your plants based on the coverage area.

That’s not all; the tabs can also be used to set the water pattern position. That is, you can choose to either focus the water pattern to the left, right or center.

This oscillating sprinkler also features unique one-touch adjustment controls. They help you control the width of the watering pattern from 10ft all the way to 53ft.

Besides, there is also an integrated flow control dial. This dial allows micro tweaking of the water coverage. It also helping you rotate the sprinkler 360 degrees.

With these excellent combinations of control features, the Mini-Turbo Oscillating Sprinkler allows you to stay in control of the watering pattern and coverage entirely.

There is a flow-through base To boost the sprinkler’s coverage area, which allows unit-to-unit connection. So you can connect extra sprinklers to your sprinkler system without too much hassle.

Finally, the sprinkler is adept for use at both low and high-water pressures. Thanks to its infinity turbo motor that helps improve smooth operation.

Pros

  • It offers silent and smooth operation at both low and high-water pressures. Thanks to its infinity turbo gear.
  • Easy to customize the settings.
  • It has quite a large coverage area.

Cons

  • Plastic build isn’t durable and is prone to leaks.

7. Irrigator Pro 525023

The Irrigator Pro 525023 is a gear driven sprinkler that offers other excellent features other than its smooth and silent operation.

At the top of this sprinkler, you’ll find programmable tabs that help you customize the sprinkler’s water coverage without trying too hard.

The Irrigator Pro 525023 offers quite an impressive spray pattern which ranges from 20ft up to 80ft. The sprinkler is quite the fit whether you are watering a narrow flower bed on your porch, a medium sized lawn or garden.

Don’t worry much about the Irrigator Pro 525023’s build. The sprinkler is made of high-density plastic. The plastic is quite sturdy and even though it doesn’t compare to those made out of metal, it’ll most certainly outlast most brands made out of pure plastic.

Pros

  • Gear driven technology for smooth and silent operation.
  • It has a great spray distance.
  • Simple to install.

Cons

  • Limited customization features.
  • Plastic build.

8. Lawn Sprinkler, Automatic 360 Rotating Adjustable Garden Sprinkler

The sprinkler is built out of top-quality ABS. ABS promises constant and robust use for a long time coming.

Next on, it is fitted with two different nozzles. They allow you to adjust between various sprinkling modes to satisfy your water spraying needs. More on that, it features an automatic constant 360 degrees rotating spray with a quick connector via which you can hook up a garden hose.

Additionally, you can draw out the stick and dig it deeper into the ground to improve stability during rough weather.

Regarding coverage and spray distance, this sprinkler can efficiently cover radius ranging from 26 – 32.8ft while covering up to 3,600 Sq. Ft.

Besides, its spray directions are adjustable, and you can choose between a 90-degree or 45-degree angle.

The Lawn Sprinkler is shipped alongside one adapter that fits easily onto the quick connector without thread. Additionally, you will also get one leakproof fitting to help keep water wastage in check.

The sprinkler is multipurpose making it suitable for garden and lawn irrigation or roof cooling during the hot summer weather. Besides that, you can also set it as a summertime sprinkler for kid’s playtime.

Finally, this sprinkler model is a smooth operator so you won’t be hearing any of that clink-clank sounds when your lawn is getting watered.

Pros

  • It is durable.
  • Easy to install.
  • It is packed alongside some handy accessories.

Cons

  • Underwaters areas under the sprinkler.

9. GARDENA ZoomMaxx Oscillating Sprinkler

The GARDENA ZoomMaxx Oscillating Sprinkler is an attractive sprinkler thanks to its excellent design. Nonetheless, its excellent build is just a taste of what this cool sprinkler head has to offer.

One intersting feature about this sprinkler is its large sled metal base. It ensures the sprinkler is stable and cannot topple over easily, even during harsh weather conditions.

At the top of the sprinkler head are 16 flexible rubber nozzles. They ensure that your lawn or garden gets complete and adequate water exposure.

Also, it has fully customizable controls for width, length and water flow. All these allow you to regulate the spray distance and pattern. Therefore, you can rest assured of minimal water wastage by getting it to water only the sections you want.

The GARDENA ZoomMaxx covers a range of 76 sq. feet to 2300 sq. feet making it suitable for spraying large areas and small backyard gardens. The sprinkler’s head is also fitted with a turbo gear to ensure silent and smooth operations when irrigating your field.

Pros

  • Its large sled metal base ensures excellent stability.
  • Fully customizable controls to tweak the spray pattern and distance.
  • Turbo gear ensures smooth operations for a long time.

Cons

  • Plastic build isn’t durable.
  • Prone to leaks.

10. Rain Bird 2045A Maxi-Paw Pop-Up Sprinkler

This impact rotor pop-up sprinkler has a rigid and heavy-duty plastic casing. What’s more, the housing is reinforced with a ribbed design to ensure its toughness and durability.

Your water source isn’t clean, no worries. The Rain Bird 2045A also features a straight-through flow low-pressure loss for great dirty water performance while still conserving energy.

Besides that, the Maxi-Paw is fitted with an inlet filter screen and pressure activated wiper seal that prevent the sprinkler’s internal accessories from debris.

Moving on to matters of water patterns and scope. This rotor pop-up sprinkler does a splendid job and has features to match. First off, its arms are double weighted for a slower rotation but increased distance of throw.

The sprinkler features a full circle spray region, but you can also choose the part-circle arc – 20 degrees to 340 degrees for a more uniform water distribution pattern.

Moreover, it has a diffuser screw similar to that on the Rain Bird 25PJDAC . The screw enables you to tweak the spray distance by changing the size of the water droplets to your liking.

In addition, it is equipped with an optional SealAMatic (SAM) which prevents runoff, puddling, and erosion caused by low head drainage. This helps you minimize water wastage especially if you are spraying slanting lawns or areas that have clay soil.

Last off, changing the sprinkler’s nozzles is simple and straightforward.

Pros

  • Easy to set up.
  • Its straight-through flow, low-pressure loss feature maximizes its dirty water performance.
  • Excellent customization features.
  • Tough build for durability.

Cons

  • Requires high water pressure to perform.

Types of Sprinkler Heads

Sprinkler heads do come in different forms and make namely; impact sprinkler head, pop-up rotor heads, and spray sprinklers.

Impact Sprinkler Head

Effective if you are looking to water or irrigate an average sized lawn. They deliver a decent throw and the highest spray distance.

Rotor Sprinkler Heads

The spray water in a circular motion. They are fitted with great customizable features giving you total control of the spray pattern and distance. But, they need high water pressure to function well. A great choice if you are watering a big lawn.

Spray Sprinkler Heads

Spray water in a circular motion, similar to rotor heads. Additionally, you can switch its position as you deem fit. Can work with low water pressure and suitable for watering small sections such as a kitchen garden or flower bed.

Fixed Sprinkler Heads

Are suitable for watering shrubs or a lawn/garden with high plants. They are set above the ground on an extendable riser.

Pop-up Sprinkler Heads

They are installed in the ground and just like their name, pop-up when the sprinkler system is activated. A good choice for a lawn with trimmed grass where you want to maintain the beauty without exposed sprinkler heads all over.

Choosing a Sprinkler Head Buying Guide

The shape of Your Garden/Lawn

The shape of the garden or lawn you intend to irrigate does have a hand in the type of sprinkler head you should buy.

First off, you want to cut back on water wastage so you most definitely shouldn’t go for a sprinkler head that will spray water to unwanted areas.

The spray type sprinkler is the most suitable if your garden or lawn has an irregular shape. As such you’ll get to customize the spray patterns on focus only on the sections that need be watered.

Besides, if your garden is slant you should go for a sprinkler with a high precipitation rate to avoid water wastage via run-off.

Durability

When buying sprinkler systems, you most certainly want devices that will last for long. As such, when picking a sprinkler head, always check its specification to ascertain that it will withstand the water pressure in your pipes.

Additionally, if you choose one made out of metal ensure it will not rust if left outside for extended periods.

However, if you opt for one made out of plastic make sure that it is the sturdy and heavy-duty ABS plastic which is not only durable but can endure extreme conditions.

Lawn Size

The size of your lawn is critical too when purchasing a sprinkler head. Be sure to check the spray distance and coverage of a sprinkler head–if it’ll cover your entire lawn or garden-. What’s more, if you have an extremely large field you can get extra sprinkler heads for your irrigation system.

Source of Water

The source of water you intend to use plays a huge role in determining the kind of sprinkler you should buy. Especially if you are going to use water from ponds that may contain debris or dirt. If such is the case, go for sprinkler heads that are easy to clean and have improved dirty water tolerance.

Sprinkler Heads Frequently Asked Questions

Why does my pop-up sprinkler head fail to pop up?

There are a couple of reasons why your sprinkler can fail to pop up. The first is low water pressure meaning the sprinkler’s zone cannot run. Secondly, the valve to the main system isn’t fully open.

To avoid such, ensure the pressure of your water is at the recommended operational level. Additionally, always check that the main’s valve is fully open.

Can the sprinkler heads be cleaned?

Yes. They can. All you need to do is to unscrew the sprinkler head and remove it from the sleeve. After that, wash off the dirt from your sprinkler heads. Return the heads into position and test if they are functioning well.

Here is a video by Ben Mester explaining how to clean clogged sprinkler heads.

How to replacing a sprinkler head?

Replacing a broken sprinkler head is quite easy. All you have to do is ensure the water isn’t running before proceeding to dig around the head. Exercise caution so you don’t puncture your water line.

Once you are done with digging, unscrew the head and remove it. Don’t remove its riser. Next on, screw a new sprinkler head back into position.

How do you raise sprinkler heads?

Start by digging up enough room around the sprinkler. Determine the height you want your sprinkler raised.

If your sprinkler has an extendable riser, gently pull it to the predetermined height or else you can buy a riser and fix it. Once done fill up the hole as it was before.

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