Sprinklers & irrigation

Did you know that different types of sprinklers have different watering rates? Check the best setting for your sprinkler system.

Ensuring your irrigation system is not over watering your garden and lawn can save a lot of water!

Use the videos below to find the recommended run times for watering your garden, depending on which sprinklers you have, or to find the best sprinkler type for your gardens needs.

Types of Sprinkler & run times

Pop-up/fixed spray sprinklers

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Rotary sprinklers

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Gear drive rotator

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Dripline sprinklers

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Seasonal sprinkler run times

As the seasons change, so do the water needs of your lawn and garden. The table below shows the adjustments that should be made to your irrigation controllers ‘Seasonal Adjustment’ setting to avoid over watering.

No matter what the season, your controller should always be turned off when it’s raining.


Time of year 

 Seasonal adjustment

January–February  100%
March   80%
April  60%
May   Use manually as necessary
June–August  System turned off (winter sprinkler switch-off*)
September  Use manually as necessary
October   60%
November  80%
December  90%


*A permanent winter sprinkler ban applies to scheme and bore water users in Perth, Mandurah and parts of the South West and Great Southern regions between 1 June and 31 August each year.

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Testing your sprinkler application rates

Catch cups (graduated measuring containers) are a valuable tool for testing how efficiently an irrigation system is operating and the sprinkler application rates. 

To test, you should:

  • spread catch cups or containers of the same size randomly around the watering zone
  • make sure they are at least 1 metre from the closest sprinkler 
  • time how long it takes the sprinklers to fill the catch cups to the depth of 10mm – this is the standard drink for an area of sandy soil.

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Once you have your reading, adjust your irrigation controller to allow for a standard drink of 10mm using the time taken to fill the cups. You can get a bag of free catch cups from this list of stockists while stocks last:

Stockist Address & phone number
Addwater Reticulation 1964 Albany Highway, Maddington
Phone: (08) 9493 8290
Controlled Irrigation Supplies 7 - 8 Delage Street
Phone: (08) 9300 2799
Elliotts Irrigation Pty Ltd 24 Canham Way
Phone: (08) 9342 0636
Muchea Irrigation & Rural Supplies Lot 1 Brand Highway
Phone: (08) 9571 4011
Reece Irrigation - Belmont 85 Belmont Avenue
Phone: (08) 9373 2220
Reece Irrigation - Canning Vale 188 Bannister Road
Canning Vale
Phone: (08) 9256 3433
Reece Irrigation - Malaga Unit 2, 813 Marshall Road
Phone: (08) 9209 2590
Reece Irrigation - Osborne Park 420 Scarborough Beach Road
Osborne Park
Phone: (08) 9201 0286
Reece Irrigation - Rockingham 133 Dixon Road
Phone: (08) 9553 1120
The Retic & Landscape Shop Unit 6, Corner Ranford Rd & Bristle Ave
Southern River
Phone: (08) 9398 4955
The Watershed Water Systems - Cockburn Shop 32/Cockburn South Central, 87 Armadale Road
Phone: (08) 9417 8383
The Watershed Water Systems - Joondalup Unit 2, 7 Delage Street
Phone: (08) 9300 9696
The Watershed Water Systems - Kelmscott 2874 Albany Highway
Phone: (08) 9495 1495
The Watershed Water Systems - Midland Unit 1, 146 Great Eastern Highway
Phone: (08) 9274 3232
The Watershed Water Systems - Morley Unit 2, 150 Russell Street
Phone: (08) 9473 1473
The Watershed Water Systems - Subiaco Shop 20, 55 Salvado Road
Phone: (08) 9381 9700
Think Water Broome 35 Clementson Street
Phone: (08) 9192 6606
Think Water Dunsborough Unit 1, 64 Commonage Road
Phone: (08) 9755 3405
Think Water Geraldton 296 Place Road
Phone: (08) 9921 1777
Total Eden Watering Systems - Balcatta Unit 8, 39 Erindale Road
Phone: (08) 9244 7532
Total Eden Watering Systems - Bibra Lake 6 Port Kembla Drive
Bibra Lake
Phone: (08) 9434 7575
Total Eden Watering Systems - Byford Unit 2, 821 South Western Highway
Phone: (08) 9525 4800
Total Eden Watering Systems - Canning Vale Unit 13, South Street, Corner South Street and Bannister Road
Canning Vale
Phone: (08) 9455 3338
Total Eden Watering Systems - Greenwood 128 Cockman Road
Phone: (08) 9342 1188
Total Eden Watering Systems - Joondalup U6/157 Winton Road
Phone: (08) 9300 3833
Total Eden Watering Systems - Malaga Unit 4/2 Carson Road
Phone: (08) 9249 2373
Total Eden Watering Systems - Mandurah 1/15 Gordon Road
Phone: (08) 9582 0522
Total Eden Watering Systems - Midland 13 Ferguson Street
Phone: (08) 9274 6545
Total Eden Watering Systems - Myaree 89 Norma Road
Phone: (08) 9317 1836
Total Eden Watering Systems - Osborne Park Unit 1, 3 King Edward Road
Osborne Park
Phone: (08) 9244 7477
Total Eden Watering Systems - Rockingham 8 Leach Crescent
Phone: (08) 9528 3044
WA Reticulation Supplies Shop 4, 277 South West Highway
Phone: (08) 9399 9399
WA Reticulation Supplies 12 Lloyd Street
Phone: (08) 9274 5500

Uneven results?

If there is a significant variation in the depth of water captured by the catch cups then your sprinkler system is not applying the water evenly and should be checked for design or maintenance faults. 

If you need help with this, find your closest Waterwise Garden Irrigator or Waterwise Irrigation Design Shop.

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Once the faults have been corrected run the test again to determine how long to run the sprinklers to deliver the recommended application rate.

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