Master valves are a common component in most irrigation systems, but they are not always required.
A master valve is an automatic valve that is installed at the point where the irrigation system connects to the water supply. The purpose of the master valve is to protect the system from a line break by shutting off the water to the irrigation system when none of the zone valves are operating.
Here are three considerations for master valves and why your customer might want to, or not want to, specify a master valve when utilizing a pumping station for an irrigation system.
Watch for Over Pressurization
When a pump station is used to pressurize the water, a master valve can work against the pump station, making it difficult for the pump station to operate properly. Why? Because the master valve may cause the pump to become over pressurized and shut down, to avoid pump damage. There is a way to stop these two critical pieces of their irrigation system from fighting with each other.
Use Pressure Boost Applications to Create Harmony
In pressure boost applications, the pump station can be used to control the master valve. Properly wiring the master valve to the pump station will enable the pump station to open and close the master valve, based on signals from the irrigation clock. This will ensure that the valve opens when the pump runs and closes when the pump is not running, avoiding damage to the pump due to over-pressuring.
Consider Eliminating the Master Valve with Suction Lift Applications
What? Eliminate the master valve? Yep, that’s right. When using a pump station to pump from a surface water source, a master valve may not be necessary at all. In this case, the pump station itself can be treated as a master valve by starting and stopping the pump based on the irrigation clock management – there is no need to have a separate valve to open when the irrigation cycle is called. This can help simplify the irrigation system as well as conserve overall product and installation costs.
There are many variables when it comes to pump stations. Understanding what options are available will help to secure your customer’s trust. If you need help finding the appropriate product for your customer’s application, call or email our Ewing Pump Hotline at 1-844-PUMP-PRO or email@example.com.