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D Hook

New Member

1

Sunday, April 4th 2021, 8:21am

Valve box (almost) filled with dirt

Opened up the valve box in the yard to turn off the drain valve and found there is dirt piled up around the valves, covering two of the valves almost completely and mostly covering the other 4. I'm assuming this is not the way it should be. So I'll be digging the dirt out around them, hopefully not accidently disturbing/cutting any of the wiring. I can see where the dirt has been washing into one corner of the box. I'm not familiar with how these boxes are constructed. Are they just four sides and the lid or do they have a bottom plate also? Should I attempt to dig out around the outside of the box and lift it out (assuming it has no bottom) or leave it in place and just try to remove as much of the dirt as possible? Over the years, the box has recessed itself lower into the ground, probably from the weight of the lawn mower and would like to somehow get it more level with the surrounding lawn.

I haven't turned on the system yet because I was hoping to get this cleaned out before doing so, so I don't have to deal with so much mud. I don't believe there's a leak in any of the plumbing inside the box but would like to have a clear view of all the valve and pipe connections.


Everything on the system is working fine but not sure it's a good idea to leave these valves buried under the dirt like they are. Would appreciate any insight into this.

Thanks!

mrfixit

Moderator

Posts: 2,509

Location: USA

2

Monday, April 5th 2021, 2:16pm

The valves are fine. It's totally up to you what you want to do with them.
If you left them alone they'd work. But you don't want it filling up with water.
You could always get a second box of the same size, put it over the existing box to make it ground level. Some digging would be required. Just beware of the wiring.
The boxes are open on the bottom. Or just rearrange the existing box by digging it up.

D Hook

New Member

3

Friday, April 9th 2021, 7:35am

The valves are fine. It's totally up to you what you want to do with them.
If you left them alone they'd work. But you don't want it filling up with water.
You could always get a second box of the same size, put it over the existing box to make it ground level. Some digging would be required. Just beware of the wiring.
The boxes are open on the bottom. Or just rearrange the existing box by digging it up.
Got the valves dug out so the tops of the diaphragm covers are all visible and the drain valve is now freed up. I noticed a small leak on the top diaphragm cover of one valve but tightening the phillips screw eliminated the leak. So no leaks now. Later this spring I might take your advice and dig up the whole box and reset it so it's a bit more at ground level. Good to know about it being open on the bottom. I kinda' thought that was the case but wasn't sure. The wiring is all exposed now so shouldn't have to worry about accidentally cutting through a wire. Now that I understand a bit more about the box, digging it up shouldn't be a big deal, if I decide to do that.

Tested the system and all seems to be working just fine. Only had to replace one head (so far) that was broken off down low when I managed to run it over with the riding mower. Probably replace a couple others, too. We have mostly Rainbird impact heads and I've just been replacing them with the Orbit Voyager II heads as they start to act up. One of the Rainbird impact heads is set to turn 360 degrees and I don't know if Orbit makes one that does the same. If not, I'll just leave the impact head in there for now.


Thanks. Sure appreciate your help.

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