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SPRINKLER MAIN AND DRAINS

WHAT IS A MAIN & DRAIN?

A 'main and drain' refers to the main valve that typically sits about 3-4 feet underground, usually located close to your city water meter. These are required when your sprinkler system is supplied by any potable water source such as city water or a well. You will not have a main and drain if your system is supplied solely by a non-potable water source, such as pressurized irrigation.

MAIN VALVE

It is used to isolate the supply of water between your sprinkler system and your home. With out this valve, there would be no way to turn the supply of water to your sprinkler system on or off without affecting the supply of water to your home. If this valve is faulty, it will leak year-round, regardless of whether or not the valve is open or closed. 

DRAIN VALVE

When you blow out your sprinkler system, you typically blow air from the front side of your backflow preventer into the network of sprinkler pipe. This leaves water remaining from the inside of the backflow preventer all the way to the main valve underground. To prevent the water from freezing and causing damage, the drain valve is opened and the water is drained. This is the importance of the drain valve, if this valve is faulty it will only leak when the main valve is open.

WHY ARE OUR MAIN & DRAINS DIFFERENT?

There are many aspects of our main and drains that are different from the typical main and drain. Our main and drains are both more functional and aesthetic as well as higher quality and longer lasting. Here are a few things that separate us from the competition:

VALVE QUALITY

We only use "curb stop" style brass ball valves with a 25+ year life span. The valves we use are the same valves that your municipality uses in their water meters. Typical main and drains are installed with a much cheaper cross top style valve with an average life span of about 5-10 years. These valves are very susceptible to damage from over-tightening/opening and poor winterization. The valves we use require a different style key to open and close them, which we supply every time we rebuild a main and drain. 90% of the time we rebuild a main and drain, it is because a valve has failed and is actively leaking, costing money and potentially damaging something unrelated. 

BRASS VS. GALVANIZED

FITTINGS

We only use 100% no-lead brass fittings to build our main and drains. Much of the time typical main and drains are built with either all galvanized steel fittings or a combination of galvanized and brass. In both cases, the life span of your main and drain is severely shortened. Galvanized steel only has 1/4 the life span of brass, and mixing galvanized steel and brass causes a rapid corrosion called electrolysis when the two types of metal touch. We only used galvanized fittings on the backflow preventer, and will always run polyethylene pipe between the brass and galvanized fittings to prevent electrolysis. The other 10% of the time we rebuild main and drains is because of corroded fittings or pipe that is causing a leak.

RISER PIPE

Most main and drains are installed with a small 4-inch piece of riser pipe over each valve. This makes it very difficult to see the valves down at the bottom of the pipe. Due to the low visibility you often need to use a flashlight just to get your key onto the valves. We use a single 10-inch piece of pipe with a decorative green valve box that encompasses both valves. This makes it very easy to maneuver inside the box and provides plenty of visibility to get your key onto the valves. 

THE INTANGIBLES

Our years of experience and dedication to quality work are what really separate our main and drains from the competition. We focus on the little details that collectively make up the superior quality of our installs. We never cut corners, because we warranty our work and genuinely want our main and drain to be the last one you will ever need installed. 

SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT

  • PHONE

    (208) 713-9951

  • EMAIL

    mike@mikesbackflow.org

  • ADDRESS

    P.O. Box 1677
    Meridian, ID 83680

MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY 8:00 AM- 5:00 PM

SATURDAY AND SUNDAY BY APPOINTMENT

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