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Starting Member


Sunday, April 20th 2008, 2:20am

need help determining flow rate of 1/4" drip line

Please help. Need info on 1/4" drip line

I am in the process of adding a drip irrigation system to my veritable garden. I want install 1/4" drip line to my 4' by 4' raised beds. I would like to use the type with drip holes every 6". I can not find information concerning the the flow rate of the 1/4" drip line. I would like a flow rate of about 1 GPH per hole. None of the suppliers advertise their flow rates and I'm not sure which 1/4" drip line would work best, the laser drilled or the regular. I do not want to exceed the rate for my entire system which includes 16 raised beds and they are all on one 1/2 distribution line 40' from the house. I also need to know which drip line is flexible so I can bend it around inside each raised bed. I appreciate any information that anyone can offer.


Supreme Member

Posts: 4,102

Location: Metro NYC


Sunday, April 20th 2008, 4:08am

quarter-inch line has just about zero flow capability ~ I use it to connect emitters to end caps, on professional drip installations. The actual flow of water through the drip zones is through tubing over a half-inch in diameter. I use elbow fittings if I need to make a really sharp turn.


New Member


Wednesday, May 28th 2008, 3:17pm

I have a 1/4" drip line with emitters every 6". The tech sheet says it drips almost 1/2 gal/hr. It's very flexible and I was able to rout it around my 5 gal buckets in my greenhouse.


Supreme Member


Thursday, May 29th 2008, 9:26pm

Hear's a list of drip tubing available from the forum sponser. You will see that some list the flow rate of the 'holes' and some don't.

I agree with WetBoots that you don't want to use 1/4" tubing for an entire water bed. The only purpose I could see for that type of tubing would be to circle a single plant with the tubing, but have the circle feed from a 1/2" feeder. Otherwise, if you just want to lay the drip tubing for the entire planting bed, then you should instead use something like the RainBird 1/2" tubing with 0.9gph at 12" spacing.




Tuesday, June 3rd 2008, 1:35am

1/4 inch drip along

I have used 1/4 inch inline turbulent flow emitters on beds much larger than 4 X 4 feet. Depending on soil texture (clay:sand:loam ratio), crop, and upon desired coverage, you can easily snake about 12 feet of the drip along line through the bed with good coverage. The more your flow, the shorter the length of any "pipe" is allowed, so the addage "bigger is better" usually applies. That said, depending on your flow rate, and to a lesser amount pressure, determines the number of emitters and length of tubing allowed. Most 1/4 inch drip along (inline turbulent flow emitters) deliver 1/2 gal/hour/FOOT(Rainbird). The emiters are spaced every 12 inches and easily allow over 16 feet of tubing (or 8 gal/hour) delivery. 1/4 inch tubing can carry 22 gal/hour, but that is pushing it with non-pressure compensated emitters. So, unless you are runing your tubing up an incline, 12 feet is well within the limits. If you use the 0.9 gal/hour in line 1/4 inch drip along, you still should be able to use at least 10 feet of it. Most 0.9 GPH I am aware of is in the larger > 0.5 inch drip along.

Heck, it's cheap enough you can buy a roll and try it. I regularly feed 200 + gal/hour worth of bed off one "zone". For my vegetable garden I do run 1/2 polyethylene flexible black tube to each of my 4 X 8 foot raised beds, but attach two 10 feet long 1/4 inch drip along (excess to get the water to the bed) on 2 foot centers. Feed both rows in the bed. Feed 16 raised beds to a zone (and thats all I have). Jeff

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