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How to install a Master Solenoid Correctly

How to install a Master Solenoid Correctly
August 19, 2016 Luke Porter

Having a Master Solenoid is essential for any reticulation system for a number of reasons

A Master Solenoid acts as a fail safe. A system without a Master Valve is always under pressure; what this means is the main supply pipe, which is usually PVC piping, is under pressure the whole way to each solenoid. A mainline under pressure like this, is much more likely to burst or have slow leaks, which may not be discovered for a long time wasting water. At any point, if a fitting pops off or a pipe is damaged, the water will come pouring out and will not stop. Think about it, if you are away on holidays and your main supply pipe bursts apart then you will be in for some serious water loss as well as possibly substantial damage to your home or property as well. Not only that, without a Master Solenoid, if any of your normal solenoids decides to play up and not shut off or starts leaking, it becomes a serious problem.

A Master Solenoid contains the flow of water at the source of the cut in (cut in is done by a licensed plumber). A cut in is where the plumber cuts into the mains water supply piping – usually copper or some other form of allowed plumbers piping – the plumber leaves a threaded fitting so the Master Solenoid can be screwed, not glued directly onto the mains water supply piping. The fact that it is screwed not glued means it will never pop off. The plumber should install two valuable things when doing a cut in.

Install an Isolation Valve
Put simply, it is a tap in the ground at the source of the cut in used to isolate the reticulation. What this means is that the owner can shut the retic water off complexly for the whole system using this tap but still have access to the water for his house.

Install a Dual Check Valve
A Dual Check Valve is a special valve that allows water through it but stops any water going back. This prevents water from people’s reticulation systems which could have glue or dirt in it from going back into people’s drinking water. This is a requirement for all new reticulation systems in Perth.

After the plumber has installed these things, the Master Solenoid should be firmly screwed onto the Dual Check Valve and plumbers tape should be carefully wrapped around all the threads before screwing on to avoid any leaks. This entire assembly should all be screwed together so that there is no chance of anything popping off in the future. The piping to all the other solenoids is then attached to the other end of the Master Solenoid and runs to all the solenoid valves. This main piping is never under pressure.

When a solenoid is turned on via the reticulation controller the Master Solenoid also turns on sending the water down the main supply pipe to the appropriate solenoid which in turn, passes it through itself to the sprinkler on that section. This is now a safe system. Even if a pipe is burst it will only leak when the reticulation is turned on because the Master Solenoid will shut everything else off after the cycle has finished. Not only that, the Dual Check Valve ensures people’s drinking water is safe and free from reticulation water.

Many old systems in Perth do not have a Master Valve, or a Dual Check Valve, or an emergency Isolation Valve. It’s not worth the risk. Do it right and do it properly! If your reticulation systems is missing any of these items please call us today for an estimate on upgrading this important part of your reticulation system.

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Founder and Director | Luke’s Landscaping and Irrigation Services. My focus is on all aspects of reticulation service, trouble shooting and installation with a strong emphasis on waterwise services and products. We also deliver a range of landscaping services. I aim to provide a professional and efficient service that stands out from other businesses.