How to unblock a drip irrigation system is a frequently asked question to Grekkon Limited’s irrigation engineers by farmers.
Checks to prevent blockage of your drip irrigation system
- Water cleanliness
- Drip tape flow rate
- Removable end caps
When installing drip irrigation kits, we train farmers on;
- how to unblock irrigation pipes
- drip irrigation problems and solutions
- how to remove drip emitters
- cleaning irrigation lines
- maintaining drip irrigation systems
- how to clean drip irrigation filters
- how to tell if the drip irrigation system is working
- when to use a drip irrigation line cleaner
How to unblock a drip irrigation system: Details
1. Water cleanliness.
Irrigation water must be clear, without particles in suspension. These particles cause system clogging. The amount of dirt in the water determines the filtration system installed
A screen filter is for clean water flowing under low pressure. A disc filter is for water under high pressure and with particles in suspension. A sand filter is the best for dirty water.
How to clean your irrigation water filter
- Remove the screen or disc from the capsule
- Soak the screen or disc filter in clean water
- Gently scrub with a piece of cloth or soft brush
3. Drip tape flow rate
Use drip tape with a flow rate of 1.6 liters per hour and above. The higher the flow rate, the less the blockage
4. Removable end caps
We install a removable end cap on the sub-main lines. This allows flushing in the event of clogging within the sub-main-line itself
How to unblock a drip irrigation system
- Flushing using plain water
Remove the end caps at the end of the sub-main pipe or drip line. This allows pressurized water to pass through discharging particles within that are blocking the system.
- Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2) treatment.
Why Hydrogen Peroxide is best to clean drip irrigation systems.
i. It is environmentally friendly because it does not contaminate the soil, and does not harm the aquifer
ii. Indirectly, it makes more oxygen available for the soil, and the plants. H2O2 prevents the accumulation of bacterial slime in the sub-main pipes and drip lines
iii. It cleans the irrigation system of accumulated organic deposits and bacterial slime. It oxidizes micro-elements (such as iron and sulfur), and trace elements (such as manganese)
iv. It prevents bacterial propagation.
Apply a concentration of 500ppm or 500mg/L in the main irrigation tank.
Monthly, add hydrogen peroxide in basin water. This is to remove any bacterial slime and/or organic deposits within the screen or disc filter.