Hose Valves



I have 2 questions. I'd like to automate my outdoor water setup. I live in the UK but still want my irrigation system to work (although it rains quite a lot anyway!).

At the moment I have one of those plugin timers which shuts on/off my irrigation once a day. It is similar to this.

Now what I'd like to do is two things. First, I'd like to know of some reasonably cheap electronically controlled water valves for the water control, they need to handle mains water pressure and will be operated daily for about an hour. I'm looking really for 12v or 24v. It'd be good if they had the correct size inputs/outputs (ie, so I can screw on hozelock fittings). I've also seen multi-channel valves before, ie, prebuilt with one input and say 4 outputs. That'd be acceptable.

I'm also looking for a small pump/filter I could drop into the bottom of my waterbutt to pump water into my pond. I will be installing float sensors in the pond and waterbutt so I can see how much water is in both, and refill the pond if needed. So a small pump powerful enough for that would be good.

As always :eek: I'm looking for stuff in the UK, links are appriciated, sorry for all the questions,
In the US all home improvement stores like HomeDepot have 3/4 and 1 inch solonoid controlled water valves for sprinkler control. About $10 - 15 which is cheap. Need a power supply as well. I recommend the Rain8Net controller which connects to your PC via serial connection for control over the valves via Homeseer or their own sprinkler control software.

Home Depot also sells submersible pond pumps for your other application.
yep, unfortunately in the UK its very different - most people don't bother with irrigation. But I have quite a lot of baskets/pots/troughs that need watering often so it makes my life easier!

Looking round the major DIY stores here (Wickes, B&Q, Homebase, etc) most offer a good range of hozelock sprinklers but they often just have those timer kits which include a clockwork controlled timer. They don't really seem to have electronic valves. I can get hold of heating valves but I don't think they are suited.

I will be putting these in a large waterproof box outside, so they will be protected from rain and stuff. There will be a small hole drilled in the underside of the box incase a valve leaks, it won't fill up the waterproof box.

There are places I can find out there such as this but they don't do valves or anything either.

Man we have all this stuff coming out of our ears at all the hardware stores here in Las Vegas. You can't get any of this on-line then? If not, wonder how much shipping would be from Las Vegas across the pond?

Check out http://www.homedepot.com and search on "sprinkler valves" - you'll find a lot of them ranging from $12 (without flow control) and up. I don't know if Home Depot will ship to the UK, but it might be worth looking into it. Orbit makes a 3-valve manifold ready-to-go for about $55. You'll have to check the Orbit site for more info about the specs of the actual unit, because Home Depot seems to think "specs" means their inventory information... idiots.

Another large store like Home Depot is Lowe's Home Improvement, http://www.lowes.com . They should have similar items.

If you need me to eyeball this stuff and let you know more about it, I'd be willig to head to the local store and take a look for you.

Good luck!

Lowes or Home Depot don't seem to offer delivery outside the US (well actually HD wouldn't tell me).

Flow control is what exactly? Something like this includes "flow control". Does this mean I can monitor via it if water is flowing or not or does it limit flow rate or pressure or something?

I will be travelling to the US in a few months so I will probably be able to buy them and bring them back with me. Control won't be an issue, I have a relay board I will be using with 8 relays so thats ok and I can get myself 12 or 24v power when needed.

Thanks though. I'll probably wait till I go out there to buy though unless I can find a good, cheap, UK source.

Flow control is a manual (usually) adjustment that limits the max amount of water volume that can flow through that valve. This is used to balance a system where multiple valves are open at the same time so the one with the least hose / nozzle restriction doesn't get all the water (decrease that zone's max flow).
FYI, if you are using any type of "drip" system you will also want a pressure regulator (attaches in line between the valve and hose to the drips. If you don't do this your drip heads will blow right off their tubes.

I've thought of a system using 6 valves that would do quite a lot. I think part of this idea I got from someone here but I'm not sure.


Mains Water In -> Flow detector* -> Main water valve -> 1,2,3,4 outputs each with a water valve -> flow detector -> pressure regulator (only on 2,3&4) -> output.

the 1st output will actually have a T in there after it's valve, with another valve coming off for a pressure release. stops the gun popping off the end of the hose which happens sometimes. So after using the hose for something, you turn it off and then after a few seconds it opens the pressure release valve (discharging into a drain) for a few more seconds.

2,3 & 4 go to different sections of my irrigation (mini drippers, soaker hose and other chain of mini drippers). Currently I have Tap > Pressure regulator > 3 of those little irrigation valves you can buy in the UK, just manual things.

*so I can detect leaks/broken valves (ie, if valves=closed but water is flowing, alert me!).

So I think I have the valve issue sorted, I know what I'm looking for, I will then probably purchase the valves when I stop by in the US.

Thanks for your help.